“We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open.” - Jawaharal Nehru

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I love you, Greg Laswell

Nick and I had a ohsofun night this past Wednesday! Something a little fun and different.

I love music. I think it allows you to experience so many emotions. You can hear a song at any minute and be transported to a different time. I can't tell you how many songs I hear that instantly take me back to the first year Nick and I started dating.

I love being introduced to new artists. Another thing I love is T.V. Combine the two and I am in heaven. A lot of my shows have amazing music. Grey's Anatomy, One Tree Hill, Parenthood, etc. They don't play your typically pop/well known songs. They showcase unknown artists or up and becoming artists. And I love how the songs have a indie rock feel to it. Once of the artists I came to love is Greg Laswell. He has been featured in many Grey's Anatomy episodes.

So when I saw that he was playing in the city I was all about getting tickets. It turns out the venue he was playing in was this really cute, intimate setting. It's called City Winery and I definitely recommend seeing a show there! You can order wine and eat food during the show. Who doesn't love drinking wine and listening to some great music!

Andrew Belle was the opening act. I had not heard of him before but I sure do know him now! He was amazing! Loved his music!!! He played an amazing set and his songs were just so passionate. Loved every minute of it!

Greg Laswell was up after that! I just love him... has such a great sense of humor too. Really gets the crowd involved. And his music is just so beautiful. Go listen to his music. You will not be disappointed!

Nick and I had such a great time! It was a perfect Wednesday night.

City Winery!

Andrew Belle

Greg Laswell playing the piano! Love!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Weekend Fun

There is tons to do in New York... tons. You can pay to do something or you can find a free event. And free is always nice when your husband is attending graduate school.

We decided to experience Shakespeare in the Park. It's kind of a New York staple. Something you must see. But you have to deal with the long lines. Tickets are not handed out until 1pm but people start lining up around 6am or earlier. We definitely didn't plan to wake up that early. We strolled into the park around 11:15 and the line was already crazy long... probably a good 500 people in front of us.

We really didn't have anything else going on so we decided to stick it out. Nick got us lunch from Lenny's and we just relaxed and enjoyed the beautiful weather NYC is having. We met a really nice guy who was visiting from Calgary. We talked with him the majority of the time and that helped past the time.

Soon enough the line started to move. I wasn't sure we were going to make it. There are only two tickets per person allowed but there were plenty of people ahead of us. We get to the front and the lady hands us our two tickets and right as we step out of the way we hear, "Only single tickets left - seats are not together." Can you believe that? We got the last two tickets seated together! It was great! We were so excited. It would have been so disappointing to wait for 2 hours and not even get to sit together.

After that we grabbed a nice waffle snack in the park. Drizzled with nutella! Yum!


Later that night we grabbed dinner at Nonna in the UWS. It was a cute Italian restaurant. We sat outside and and some drinks and a wonderful meal. After that we headed to the Delcorte Theater where the play was being held.

This was the glass my wine came in... pretty funny. Not your typical wine glass. It made me want to take large gulps instead of drink at a leisurely pace!

Measure for Measure was the play we were seeing. This was my first Shakespeare play (if you don't include high school and I am not). It was so good! It was unbelievable how those actors learn the Shakespearean lines. Even though it was difficult to understand at times we were able to keep up. It was a beautiful night and we enjoyed something that is quintessentially New York City.

Today I went for my first bike ride with Nick. I am trying to decide if this would be something I would enjoy. I had a really great time. So much better than running! It's definitely going to take some time to build up my lungs and leg strength but I think it's worth it. Great exercise and a activity Nick and I can do together.

Side note: I saw two famous people this weekend... well, one famous and one who is a TV personality.

First, Spike Lee. Yep, I was walking down Madison Ave around 8ish and there he was. He was all by himself and he walked right past me. Pretty cool.

Second, Ross Mathews. He's been on Jay Leno and Celebrity Fit Club and he can be regularly seen hosting pre-award shows. He was walking out of Central Park when Nick and I headed into the park.

Pretty awesome!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

A Few Things...

Here is a little wrap of what happened these past few days.

It's officially summertime in the city! I am super excited... bring on the heat. I will take 100 degree weather over 50 or 60 any day. I know, crazy. But, I grew up in Texas...

I decided to start the start of summer off with a new purchase. A purse. Not just any purse but a gorgeous, flirty, summer purse.

Louie Vuitton! I love Louie! Isn't it gorgeous? Yes, it is. It's the perfect summer tote and I am in love. Bags are my definitley my guilty pleasure.

This past Wednesday night I met up with Ariane, Amber, and Julie at Flor de Sol. It's this really cute and fun tapas bar. They have some of the best sangria! The restaurant is really cozy... it's like this Gothic Spanish feel. I love it! There was music playing in the background and they had a flamenco dancer as well. And the food was really good! It was so great to meet up with them and catch up! We planned a lot more activities for the summer months.

Last and probably most importantly... I have decided to resign from my position at my job. I was offered a opportunity I felt I could not pass up. I will still be in Dermatology but the practice is smaller and more intimate. I like the idea of working for a solo physician and really creating a great relationship with her as well as the patients. I am very excited about this new chapter and I really believe that this is a place I can learn and grow into and hopefully be at for a while.

So, there will be more news to come when I start my new adventure in a few weeks!

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Drinks & Dinner

Tuesday night I met up with my wonderful friend Jenienne over on the UWS. It was a much needed catch up date!

And of course we had to catch up over margaritas! We met at Rosa Mexicano. A new Mexican restaurant for me and I loved it! They had an amazing pomegranate margarita. It was heaven.

We sat on outside along Columbus street and watched the hustle and bustle of the evening commute go by as we talked.

I met Jenienne shortly after Nick and I moved here (through work). She is the kindest person! I've wrote about her and her wonderful family before. We went to her apartment and had Thanksgiving dinner with them (since we were not able to get home). Just love her! And Mike (her hubby)!

We had a great time and already decided that we will meet again Saturday night.... with the hubby's for a group dinner! Yay!

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Vacation Part 2: Belize

Disclaimer - this will be a long post!

Hello warm weather, beautiful crystal blue water, and relaxation. Yes, we made it to Belize!

Nick and I were oh so very excited for this trip. Much needed relaxation for the both of us. The trip started off a little rocky. Our flight out of Dallas was delayed by 2 1/2 hours due to weather. Yep, shortly before we were to board a hail storm blew in. Our plane was re-routed to Oklahoma. It landed there and waited on the all clear to head back to DFW. So about the time we finally took off would have been the time we actually landed (had we left on schedule). Oh well, what can you do?

We landed in Belize City about 5ish. I should add I did pretty well on the flight. I think I was just super excited about getting there already. How short lived that was. I then realized I had to do something that scared the living daylights out of me.... get on a propeller plan. Yeah, not at the top of my list. But we had to take it to get to the island we were staying on - Ambergris Caye.

We received our boarding passes and proceeded outside to the small plane. It looked like a toy next to the 737 American flight we just got off. I'm walking next to Nick so incredibly nervous. We get to the stairs and one off the staff of Tropic Air tells me to wait.... that I will be sitting at the back. Excuse me? WHAT! He starts going on about weight distribution... the smallest and lightest people need to be at the back. The one time I wish I was not a petite female. I was even more anxious now. He could tell... then explained to me how this was a great day to fly (with a huge smile on his face). Yeah, whatever!

I say again, I CANNOT believe I got in that!

I sat next to two other girls (small as well). I was on the right hand side. I explained the the girl next to me if I inadvertently grab your arm/hand, I apologize. They were both really nice and we talked the whole flight. The small planes are really so different. It was fairly smooth but when we did hit a little turbulence the plane dropped some and since I was in the back you felt the tail moving side to side.... like window washers...just constant. Ugh! But we made it and I lived and faced a fear. Go me!

The view - obviously Nick took this. I was too busy praying I made it safely to the ground!

The resort we stayed at was amazing. So beautiful and the staff were wonderful. They handled everything. We were welcomed with a rum punch when we arrived. Yum. And also were informed we received a complimentary upgrade... 2 bedroom villa. Not like we needed it but we took it!

It was around dinner time when we got there so we went on a search for dinner. They have all this cute and colorful restaurants along the water. We had been given some suggestions but figured we would just wander. We did have a specific goal in mind though. The Mavericks were playing and Nick wanted to find the game. We stumbled upon a place called Fido's. The menu looked good and they had a bar area with a television with the game on. Perfect! As we sit down and turn to our left we then see the HUGE projector screen broadcasting the game. Nick was in heaven. They had a band playing in the background and it was just a great laid back atmosphere. The food was heavenly too!

GO MAVS! (As we speak they are fighting for that title!)

The next day we spent by the pool the whole day. Yes, I did have the SPF 85 and 50 coated on us. I am in dermatology! We ordered lunch from the bar - Caliente. Mexican food, haha! You would think we would be tired of it by now but nope. It was sooo good. I had chicken quesadillas and Nick and shrimp tacos. It really was awesome. We ordered drinks and sat by the pool.

Later that night we went on a sunset cruise on a catamaran. It was about a 2 1/2 hour trip and it was lovely. The sunset was just gorgeous. We had some rum punch and snacks. We met some really nice people as well. One couple was from Chicago and on their honeymoon. We met a lot of honeymooners. A lot. After the cruise we ate dinner at Blue Water Grill. It's rated the best restaurant on the island... it wasn't our favorite. Not too impressed.

He's the best!

So pretty!

The next day started off with a morning snorkeling trip with Alfonso. Apparently he is a celebrity there. If you watch the Travel Channel, which I do - since I love to travel, he was on one of Samantha Brown's Central America shows. She filmed in Belize and had him take her on a snorkeling trip. He's also like a "fish whisperer" .... wherever he is the fish are.

The water was crystal clear.

We didn't have an underwater camera... stupid, I know. Next time we won't do that. But we saw a lot of amazing coral, fish, and some scarier things like an eel and barracudas. The eel looked nasty... like it just wanted to bite into you. I stayed far away. The second part of the trip was Shark Ray Alley. Yep, sharks and sting rays. And what did we do? We got in the water with them. When did we get in the water - shortly after Alfonso threw in food to the sharks. Yep. We were swimming with sharks while they were eating.

He kept saying the sharks and sting rays are very friendly. I kept thinking... "didn't Steve Irwin die from a sting ray - his tail stabbing him in the chest." Right. But carpe diem! It was really exciting. Alfonso would put the sting rays on his head. We did get to touch both the sharks and sting rays... which are slimy. Oh, and Nick held a shark. Yep, for like 10 minutes in his arms. CRAZY! I couldn't believe he did that. He was holding a nurse shark and it just stayed in his arms. Unbelievable! It was a great experience.

We went back after snorkeling and just relaxed by the pool the rest of the day. Later, we had a nice relaxing dinner and watched the Mavs game!

The next day was a long day but ohsovery fun! We woke up at the butt crack of dawn to catch the prop plane back to the main island. Yeah, can you believe it? I took it again! We had organized this day to be "activity" day. We were going to go visit the Maya ruins, Xunantunich, experience zip lining for the first time and finish the day with cave tubing. Lots to do!

The Mayan ruins were so amazing and beautiful. It was really hard to imagine we were standing where an ancient civilization once was. Xunantunich or "Stone Lady" dates back to the classic Mayan era between 200-900AD. We went to the top of the highest pyramid, "El Castillo" which was about 130 feet tall. We were able to see so much of Belize and were able to also see into Guatemala. The intricate detail in the hieroglyphics were unbelievable. They were such an intelligent civilization and way beyond their time.

It was so pretty up there but incredibly HOT!

Next was zip lining and cave tubing. Neither Nick or I had ever been zip lining. He has a fear of heights so it's not something that is always at the top of his list. We got to the spot, received our gear, had a small tutorial, and were on our way. It was great! I loved it. I wish it had been longer. You are going to so fast and are so high... we were in the jungle part of Belize and it was just beautiful! Next, cave tubing. It was considered "dry" season in Belize so the water level was pretty low. There was certain parts we had to stand up and move our tube through. But overall it was relaxing. The underground caves had been there for millions of years. There was one part that sparkled like diamonds... wish it really was diamonds. I would have gone over there and taken one!

Later that night we decided to stay in and order room service. Much deserved after a wonderful and exhausting day.

Our last day in Belize was simply relaxation. We stayed by the pool and read and took a nap. Just heaven. Later that night we had a nice dinner at another resort... one of our better meals. They had a musician playing out on the patio we were sitting at under the stars. It was really romantic. That's one thing Nick and I realized we really miss... stars. You just can't see them in the city. It's sad too - they are so beautiful!

Belize was a great vacation. Just what we needed! I am already planning our next one :)!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Vacation Part 1: The Big D

Nick and I headed back to the Big D... Dallas. It was hard to believe we hadn't been back home since we left last August.

It was so nice to be home. We stepped off the plan and were greeted by the hot Texas weather. Love. My mom picked us up and what was our first meal? Chick-fil-A. Sooo good! Nick and I were in heaven!

Later that night we went to our local neighborhood Mexican restaurant...Anamia's with my parents, Evan, Mike and Sandy. Hello Mexican food! And what did we get? Oh yeah, fajitas! It was so good. I knew I missed Tex-Mex food but I didn't realize how much until I took that first bite. Delicious.

The next day we drove to Houston with Mike (Nick's dad) to see our new nephew, Jacob. It would be a quick trip... drive down in the morning and come back at night. We had a great time with Laura (Nick's step-sister). Jacob was two weeks old and was the cutest little guy. He was so quiet too. He slept the whole time we were there. We just passed him between the two of us. Definitely gave me a little baby fever but not enough to want one anytime soon! We met up with Nick's other sister, Cerise, and her family for dinner. Hello, Pappasito's. Nick and I are going for a record!


So precious!

Friday was an interesting day. Nick and I saw our old trainer, Johnny! Oh how I missed him and surprisingly his workouts! Then I went to my old middle school. Coppell Middle School East. My brother, Evan, is starting 6th grade in August. On a side note: can you believe he is going to be in 6th grade. No, I can't. It makes me feel old. And what makes me feel even older? My old high school basketball coach is now the principle of Coppell Middle School East. Crazy! So I went up to the middle school and saw Coach, or now Principle Springer. It was 1) so crazy to be in that lunchroom and 2) to see her so many years later! Just really makes you realize how fast time goes by.

Later that night we went to Frisco and spent some time with Nick's mom, Karen. We had a nice relaxing night and some more yummy Mexican food. Hello, Uncle Julio's. It was just really nice to relax at home for a little while... we had been on the run for the last two days.

Saturday we had lunch with our very close friends from McKinney plus their two cute daughters. And where did we have lunch. Yep, La Hacienda Ranch... Mexican. It was so great to see them. We missed them so very much. I couldn't believe how big Andi and Claire had gotten. It was actually the first time we had seen Claire...she was born shortly after we left Dallas. They are such close friends and we miss them terribly!

So cute... doesn't Claire look like she could be ours!

The boys!

The group! Love them!

That night I met up with my old boss, Adean. Oh, I missed her so much! If I could have stayed in Dallas I would have retired with her. She is the best person and most amazing boss anyone could have. I love her! We met at Taverna. A cute Italian restaurant... I know, not Mexican! It was so great to catch up with her and hear all her crazy stories. I missed that a lot.

Sunday, our last day in Dallas, was spent with my parents and Evan. We watched Evan play in his championship soccer game. He lost but it was so close. And he played a great game... had some awesome saves at goalie. Afterwards we went and saw Thor. I didn't quite know what to expect but I really liked it. I kept telling Nick, "wouldn't it be awesome if another galaxy like that really existed." Hah! And where did we go to lunch... one of the last places on our list... OTB. On. The. Border. Love it! I really think I could survive on chips, salsa, and queso.

It's funny... Nick kinda of looks like our brother. All that dark hair!

Later that night we enjoyed hanging out in the TV room and having a home cooked meal. It was so nice to be back home and with family and friends. Nick and I both agreed that it didn't need to be another 10 months before we came back. It's home. Nothing more important than home.

Next up: Vacation Part 2: Belize!