“So no one told you life was gonna be this way”

Friends

Now, if you know that the title of this post is the opening line and recognize this couch, than you and I are kindred spirits!

For the 20th anniversary of the first episode of Friends, and in true New York fashion, 8 o’clock Coffee recreated Central Perk in Soho. What a brilliant idea.

I grew up watching this show. I’ve seen each episode at least 15 times each, tell me a line and I will know what episode it’s from. Along with Sex and the City, all real life events will always remind of an episode of Friends, I can walk down the street, see something, or hear something and laugh because it’ll remind me of Friends. I can re-watch Friends a million times and laugh every.single.time! Without fail!

It goes without saying, I love Friends! The news that NetFlix will start streaming it January 1, 2015…O.M.G! You won’t ever get me off it (Hard enough as it is already, currently catching up with Once upon a Time and waiting with baited breathe for Season 10 of Grey’s Anatomy)

When they opened the doors to the pop up Central Perk in Soho, it automatically became a must do! Unfortunately, life took hold and we only managed to make it down to Soho the day before they closed the doors and they weren’t handing out any more passes for that evening! I was so upset, I couldn’t talk, DH promised me that we would return first thing the next day and try our luck, I agreed, but I was still too upset to talk (until he took me into a paper store and all the pretty paper cheered me right up!)

So bright and early the following day, DH literally pushed me out of bed and we made our way down to Soho. We was already a line that wrapped around the block a couple of times. We joined the line at 8:15am. They weren’t opening until 10am. And slowly we watched the mania and absolutely hysteria unfold in front of us.

Waiting in line for 4 hours!

Waiting in line for 4 hours!

The line continued to grow and grow as the morning went on. It wrapped around itself a couple of times before security came along and re-started the line on the next block, but no one told the new joiners where to go so they continued to join the double line and all hell broke loose when they realized there were two lines.

Our line managed to avoid all the hysteria and received our entry passes for an 11am slot. At about 10:40 a silly security guard told us to all leave as we already had our passes and to come back 5 minutes before our time slot. We all looked at him like he was insane and no one budged, we weren’t losing our spot in line regardless. Slowly but surely we shuffled closer and closer to the entrance and like magic we were through the front doors!

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It was like my television came alive right in front of me, the white horse that Chandler and Joey ride in on when they move into Monica and Rachel’s apartment is the first thing you see and I almost lost it. DH didn’t understand what I was doing when I was posing in front of it, eh…as if you don’t know what I’m trying to do! I pity the fool! The Gellar Cup! Monica’s engagement ring…Phoebe’s guitar….SMELLY CAT!!!

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Everything in the pop up was free! Free entry, Free Coffee…except the merchandise…we could even take photos on the couch for free. It would have made an absolute killing, but by the grace of the friends God, they made it all FREE! We got our photo taken on the couch! It was so worn in, it was surreal for me to sit on that couch knowing it was where the entire cast sat for 10 years!

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The entire experience inside was about 10 minutes, a bit longer for us as we wanted to make our four hour wait a little bit more ‘worth it’.

It was a dream come for me, something that I never actually imagined that I could do.

And “so no one told you life was gonna be this way” to me…no one told me life could be this amazing!!!

He's my Lobster

He’s my Lobster

Last SummerDaze in New York: Part Two

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As promised, my Hubby took me back to Central Park to go row a boat! He is definitely very good to me!

This time we had a mission, no dwadling, no grabbing a bite, no getting lost! Make a bee-line straight to the Row Boats. And that’s exactly what we did, except the smallish stop on a park bench to listen to a jazz band for a few minutes, we made it in good time though and there barely was a wait.

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⇑ We rowed so far to the edge of the pond that we actually beached ourselves and got stuck!

Central Park

People couldn’t process why a pregnant lady was rowing her husband around, I kept getting looks and mostly smiles, but they definitely found it strange. I don’t like missing out on fun activities, and I thought I wouldn’t be able to row, but I gave it go. I’ve been quite active and mobile during my pregnancy, but even I was surprised I was about to play on the row boats without making Pebbles unhappy.

I had so much fun rowing us around, DH was quite amused by it all. I must say though, he was almost ready to pull out of the entire expedition. He got himself worked up and was talking nonsense about being worried I’d fall in and the water is dangerous (haha) and I basically can to pitch to him that I.was.fine. and PLEASE do not take this away from me. Come Sunday, he was all for me having a row!

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It was another glorious day in Central Park, the sun was high and hot. We found a little shade and chilled for a few moments. Taking in this city and this view from a row boat on a pond in the middle of the concrete jungle. AMAZEBALLS!

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Did you know an hour goes quick? Who would have thought an hour on a row boat on a smallish pond would go so fast!?! We had lost track of time that we had to speed back to return the boat!

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⇑Bump takes the Literary Walk and finds some acorns!

We briefly stopped by the bar at the lake for a beer and a sparkling water to absorb all the fun we had and just be in the moment. Another glorious memory we made for ourselves, another Everyday Adventure to add to our books. It was a perfect weekend and I think I’ll be talking about this one for a long time!

Thanks for stopping by everyone!

xox

V

Last SummerDaze in New York

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Feels like Fall has finally stepped into gear but over the weekend we were granted one final hurrah from Apollo this past weekend and it felt like summer wasn’t quite ready to lose the fight with winter and it was glorious! So, we headed up to Central Park for some wanderings, getting lost and ticking a couple of things off our New York Bucket List!

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⇑ Bump has brunch!!!

We started off our day with brunch of course! Le Grainne Cafe was actually the first cafe I visited when I moved to New York, I only had a latte, sat outside and though cute, there was a big white truck parked right in front of me, so it kind of ruined the atmosphere and I’ve been wanting to go back ever since to try their menu. In hindsight it maybe wasn’t the best idea while pregnant as there wasn’t much I could actually eat on the menu that I liked. I went with the omelet, I’m not sure why, cos I don’t even like omelets and ordering this, basically reconfirmed that I really don’t like omlets. BUT everything else was great, inside is adorably vintage French, the staff are buzzing around, busily tending to their tables, all with smiles on their faces. For such a busy New York Cafe, you could, maybe, excuse a place for having grumpy staff, you’d kind of expect it actually, but they really weren’t here. They were all really sweet and friendly. Will need to go back and have what DH had, I really miss my lattes and poached eggs! yummmmmm!

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I love Central Park. It is my favourite place in this entire city,  and the aim of today’s game was to go on a row boat adventure! But coming out of the subway, we ended up entering the park at a completely new entrance, so typically us, we got lost but I love getting lost here, you stumble upon new things and places all the time, like this ⇑ bridge! You know this bridge, everyone knows this bridge…ok my husband didn’t know about this bridge, but he isn’t into pop culture and rom coms like I am, so I can’t expect him to know this bridge. But I’ve been searching for this bridge forever! As you can see I was absolutely delighted to find it!

We’ve lived here for over a year now, we visit the park at least once a month sometimes more, but we found so much this weekend, it as amazing! How can you visit one place continuously for over a year and still find wonderful places? This is why I love New York! It’s impossible to be bored here, it’s jaw droppingly gorgeous and always buzzing!

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⇑Still lost, and I look down and it suddenly dawned on me…GAHHH I have a beach ball of a belly! Where did that come from! So crazy how your body changes, in what feels like, overnight!⇑

Central Park (4)We eventually found our way, it was about midday and we were starving. We figured we’d ‘grab a bite’ at The Boathouse. HA! Little did we know, this place isn’t for the faint hearted. As this decision lead to a 10 minute wait to be grab a buzzer that had an hour and half wait to be actually seated. We made the executive decision to just wait. We’ve been wanting to eat here for a while now, it was on the Bucket list, we’re here now, so we may as well. We did grab a something small for the bar to tie us over, sat in the courtyard and chatted and before we knew it, we were getting buzzed. And oOo so fancy here, worth the wait, but if you can get a reservation, I would plan it out a little better. I also like how spontaneous it was, something we’re trying to take advantage of while we can.

Central Park (5)After our fancy (THIRD!!!) brunch, we were ready to hit the high waters and go rowing! The sun was lower, so it was a perfect time to go, but it seemed everyone else had the same idea. The line was ridiculous! We took one look at each other and said, nope, no way! DH promised we would come back the next day when the line isn’t so crazy.

The day was still so perfect that I wasn’t ready to go home, we saw the lines for the Global Citizen Festival and decided that we’d plonk ourselves outside the gates and listen to the great live music. Though upon walking to the Great Lawn, we stumbled, once again, on a couple of other places we’d known about but hadn’t seen yet. The Alice in Wonderland statue and the Conservatory Water pond where you can sail boats! We scrapped the festival and wandered around here for a little while longer. There was a jazz band performing, children playing and the sun was setting, it was just magical.

Central_Park4The light…sunset light, it’s magical, stunning and beautiful.

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Seriously, #nofilter. The light is amazing (so are my fabulous Tiffany sunnies!)

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Though we didn’t get to do our row boat adventure on Saturday, DH promised me we’ll come back first thing tomorrow and row our hearts off! I loved this day regardless. It felt like a dream, because I mainly remember the light, the adventures of discovering so many new places in this beautiful park, the fun we had getting lost and wandering randomly through. Truly one of the best days I’ve had, and all in my back yard!

Playing Host In New York

Playing Host In NYC

We played host over a couple of weeks in September when two groups of friends came for a visit. It’s always such a treat to have friends visit us here in this magnificent city that we get to call home.

We loved seeing them and spending time catching up and laughing, it honestly felt like we were back home when we all saw each other, especially when we’re so far from everyone during the baby bump phase in our lives.

Here’s the little path we took our friends on

A Guide to Chelsea

Almond – Yes, not technically Chelsea, but close enough. This a little gem I found wandering about around the Flatiron building and it’s a great place for brunch. The decor provides a charming rustic atmosphere with farm style tables and earthy tones. There’s a room where they simply cut the bread,  and billiards table in the back of the restaurant where you can work off your meal!

Playing Host In NYC

 Eataly – I love wandering through here, the buzz is always electric and the aroma of fresh food fills your nostrils and makes you just want to eat everything! Playing Host In NYC

230 Fifth Rooftop – This is an absolute MUST go to rooftop bar. It’s one of my favourites and yes it’s a little touristy, but who cares, when you are in this city, you just want to absorb everything it.  The moment The Empire Building rises above you as you walk onto the deck, its breathe taking and you are in absolute awe of this city!

Playing Host In NYC

Chelsea Market – If you can’t tell, I love food, so it’s only fitting that we ended up at our second foodhall in one day. I love the vibe here as well, I especially love the salt and balsamic tasting store and the massive lobsters you can buy in the seafood market!

A little further out near Union Square is a great dinner spot called ABC Cocina. The food and decor are amazing here.

A Short Guide to Brooklyn (In the Summer)

Smorgasburg – I’m a huge huge food truck fan! And this has to be one of my favourite summer activities. Heading over to Brooklyn and stuffing my face with fantastic food! Today, I had a Vietnamese omelet and topped that off with some Mac & Cheese! Yup, I’m very global!

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Playing Host In NYC

Wythe Hotel Rooftop – So, I’m not a huge fan of this place, I think the views of Manhattan are better from the riverside of Smorgasburg. I think the line is stupid and I think the staff are pretentious and down right wankers (that’s an Australian term) I never recommend coming here but this stop was not my decision (and I’m not linking them here for that reason)

Playing host

Remember I said I really wanted a fur coat? Well, this one is not it! It was more of a scruffy dog than a coat!

Lower East Side Wanderings

I’m not calling this a guide as it was our friends who mostly led the way around this neck of the woods. We don’t typically venture out this “far” so here were out pit stops.

Spitzers Corner – This cool American gastro pub has a fun vibe, very loud and full of people. Long family style dinner tables and a great menu to boot. I really wanted the Pork Belly for dinner, but when they said they were out, the waitress recommended the fish tacos, and my god, they were divine! Would definitely go back here

Sweet Button Deserts  – Seeing as though I’m not participating with my drinking companions, I opted for a sweet dessert. We stumbled upon this gorgeous little dessert bar and was absolutely knocked off our feet with how scrumptious their desserts were! MAYBE the highlight of my night! OK it was!Playing Host In NYC

Little Rascal Cafe and Bar – we ended our lovely night here. A great little bar that our out of town friends had stopped by and wanted to go back to. It’s cute and intimate and the staff are lovely.

We had a blast with our friends, and though we were exhausted, I felt like we got in our last social hurrah in. As we don’t typically stay out until 1am in lower east side bars, it was good to be able to hang with our friends sans baby in toe and not worry too much about getting home for whatever baby reason. We won’t have this luxury in a couple of months, so it was nice to indulge in being young and free!

What are your must-sees you always take people to when they come to visit you?

Birthday Celebrations

Happy Birthday

I celebrated my birthday a couple of weeks ago and I’ve always been very anxious when it comes to organizing anything. This year I wanted to get away, be on a beach, sing happy birthday and blow out my candles on a mini cake. But enter my amazingly, adoring husband and this year and every year, he simply amazes me in celebrating me.

My Birthday

I started off my day with the ultimate gesture from my DH. He got up super early to prepare for me a lovely breakfast in bed that was accompanied by the biggest bouquet of flowers and my first gift for the day which was sent from his family. I say ultimate because my DH is not, in any way, a morning person, and for him to get up, change, head out for supplies and prepare breakfast for me is something for the history books because you don’t understand how much of non morning person he is! So that alone was heart melting to me. I tell you it’s the small things he does that means the world to me!

Birthday celebrations

Happy Birthday

Only a geek would be thrilled to receive this as a birthday present! I squealed in delight when I opened this lovely gift from my family-in-laws! I’ve been wanting one of these for years!

I did have to go to my 9-5 on my birthday and I’m so glad I did as my favoritest person in the whole world sent me some beautiful flowers to my desk, I also had a lot of colleague come by to say happy birthday which was sweet of them. I got more flowers when I got home sent from my awesome brother! Basically my house was filled with beautiful flower arrangements and I couldn’t be happier.

Birthday celebrations

Gorgeous flowers sent from my lovely brother

Gorgeous flowers sent from my lovely brother

My birthday coincided with our friend’s visiting, so the get away had to be postponed for a week later, so we could spend time with people we haven’t seen in over a year, which I’m so glad we did. I also share my birthday with said visiting friend so it was even more fun that I get to share the celebrations with him.

Me and my Birthday Buddy!

Me and my Birthday Buddy!

As our birthday fell on a school night, we had organized a dinner and a couple of drinks and then have a party that Saturday. For the dinner venue, we scoured New York City for the perfect venue. I wanted something, nice, fun and casual but not too casual. And eventually we found Toro in the Meatpacking District.

My Birthday My Birthday

I’m more about the venue and atmosphere than I am about the food, don’t get me wrong, the food always has to be good, but I do like to look at pretty things. At first I thought it might be a little to man-ly and industrial, but it got great reviews and once we arrived there, the atmosphere was perfect, even for a Wednesday night. We ordered our tapas selection to share amongst us and a paella to share. The paella was divine, the tapas we ordered were good but I just wish there was more of it and I do wished there were more meat options, but that was due to us not actually picking the items, and leaving it to the waiter to select the house favorites.

Birthday celebrations

My Birthday

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We ended the night with a night cap (and a soda water for me) at Revel in the Meatpacking district. I’m glad we came here as it was more the vibe I was looking for, so greeny stuff on walls, mood lighting and just a general coolness in the air.

This gorgeous rose needed to be the centerpiece of the huge bouquet DH presented me. Simply beautiful

This gorgeous rose needed to be the centerpiece of the huge bouquet DH presented me. Simply beautiful!

It was honestly a great way to celebrate my birthday, great friends, great food, and a perfect city!

Here’s until next year!

My Birthday

Sunday Funday’s

Chelsea Piers and Highline 24 August 20143We took a lazy Sunday afternoon to hit the driving range at Chelsea Piers. I bought a voucher online that included a $25 ball card and rental of one club for $15! Bargain I say! I really love finding discount vouchers for adventures I like to take anyway. I feel like I’m cheating the system! WOO me! 

Sunday Funday

⇑ Denim Jacket: Gap. Shorts: Maternity Shorts from Old Navy. Top: Basic white tank from Supre

⇑ Denim Jacket: Gap. Shorts: Maternity Shorts from Old Navy. Top: Basic white tank from Supre

Chelsea Piers and Highline 24 August 20144I’m a total novice, I know I’m not any good, I just like hitting the ball. My goal is usually just to hit the ball in the first place and to hit it straight, which don’t necessarily happen simultaneously, really just luck of the draw. But today, today was different, I was kicking a$$! and I totally kicked DH’s a$$ today. You see, DH is much more sportier than I am, he is like a fish to water on almost everything and so I take much pleasure in being better at things whenever the occasion arises. Which was today. Double WOO Me! As you can see, I’m not a gracious winner. 

Sunday FundayAfter the excitement of the driving range, we took a walk along The Highline and aimed to get to the very end, as we usually have to drop off midway, usually due to rain or something and we when we hit the point that we usually turn back at, DH said to me “I feel like we’re heading into Mordor, lands we’ve never ventured into before”. It was a big moment for us! 

Chelsea Piers and Highline 24 August 20146 Chelsea Piers and Highline 24 August 20145The Highline is such an oasis, and I’m so pleased they made such a great space out of nothing. Living in the city, I find that I’m on a constant search for nature, when there’s a patch of grass somewhere, I immediately take my shoes off and walk my tooties through the grass, and I’m hyper sensitive to the tweetings of birds. I’m not sure why, but I literally stop and just listen. The other things to listen out for? People’s random conversation, the Highline is arrow and crowded, so it’s not hard to hear snippets of people’s conversations, one liners that, as outsiders, are taken totally out of context and are totally hilarious!Chelsea Piers and Highline 24 August 20147 Sunday FundaySunday FundayWe got to the end of the line, we were very please with ourselves! Mission accomplished! Stood there for a little while and we could see the extension and it seems to a pier that extends into the Hudson and looks like they’ve opened up the space, very excited to explore that section once it opens up. If you ever get the chance to visit this wonderful space, please do so, look past the crowds and enjoy the oasis.

⇑ We went to our local Vietnamese Restaurant after our walk. Love this place!

⇑ We went to our local Vietnamese Restaurant after our walk. Love this place!

Sunday FundayIt was a lovely, laid back weekend in New York and as usual, I will await for next weekend!

What did you get up to this past weekend? Have any tips for NYC on where we should take our next adventures?

 

 

Brooklyn Wanderbouts

We headed over to Brooklyn to finally check out Smorgasburg and boy did we eat well!
We don't have big appetites, we couldn't really move after eating all this food.
We don’t have big appetites, we couldn’t really move after eating all this food.
How cute is this ice cream parlor?!?! That picture of the stopwatch is DH literally counting how long it would take me to crash from the sugar in my ice-cream.  Obviously, I didn't last long!

How cute is this ice cream parlor?!?!
That picture of the stopwatch is DH literally counting how long it would take me to crash from the sugar in my ice-cream. Obviously, I didn’t last long!

The cool places you stumble upon when you get lost looking for food

The cool places you stumble upon when you get lost looking for food

Yup! #IWokeUpLikeThis

Yup! #IWokeUpLikeThis

DH is going through an 'Art-teest' photo phase "We need to take more interesting photos and angles" he says. This manhole covered in stickers grabbed my attention and this was his 'art-teest' shot. I quite like it!

DH is going through an ‘Art-teest’ photo phase “We need to take more interesting photos and angles” he says.This manhole covered in stickers grabbed my attention and this was his ‘art-teest’ shot. I quite like it!

Geeking Out at The Met and its Rooftop

Summer in New York is a mix of wanting to get out and about and trying to stay out of the searing heat and humidity. Sunday wasn’t any different.
 
We were meant to hit a beach this weekend, but the looming clouds and threats of thunderstorms kept us in Manhattan. DH suggested The Met, which I promptly agreed to as I’d been wanting to check out the Rooftop they open over the summer, and it did not disappoint

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