Wednesday, December 14, 2011

New York City!!!

Last weekend we went to NYC for a quick getaway.  We went with Sean's brother, Daniel.  He had served his mission in New York City but never got to see the Manhattan sights.

Ellis Island and Statue of Liberty

We took the ferry out to Ellis Island which got some pretty good views of the lower Manhattan skyline and Lady Liberty. My advice to visitors to NYC is to buy your Statue of Liberty tickets online.  We got to go through the security line before those who had just bought their tickets and therefore got good seats on the ferry.


 I was glad we had some time to walk through Ellis Island.  The boys were excited to see this room since it was featured in Hitch. 

You can see Lady Liberty through the window of the Ellis Island Museum.  The Statue was closed so we didn't get off on Liberty Island but the ferry provided enough views of the statue. 

Brooklyn Bridge

The bridge had a lot of construction on the Brooklyn side so it limited our view.  


 We went near dusk so the lighting was perfect for good shots of the city.  We couldn't get over how many skyscapers there were in NYC. 

I don't know the significance of these but I did see it a couple of times on the cables of the bridge. 

We took some great shots on the Brooklyn Bridge.  I love these shots of Sean because they are so candid. 

Rockefeller Center

 We went to the Rockefeller Center.  It was SO crowded!  I have been to New York 3 times before, once in summer and twice during Christmas and I have never seen it this crowded!  There was a super long line to ice skate and it was pricey.  We just walked around the square before heading up to the Top of the Rock.

Top of the Rock had really great views of the city.  I had done the Empire State Building twice and I can say that I enjoyed the view from the Top of the Rock much better.

Central Park

 After three trips to the Big Apple I have never gone inside Central Park.  I have walked on the street bordering it but never through it.  This time we did and it was a very pleasant walk.  It must be so pretty in the summer time when the trees are so full.

Our Apartment

Hotels were super expensive in December.  I had some friends who always get apartments when they visit places and there happened to be a couple listed online at half the price of a hotel.  We decided to try it and it worked out perfectly!  We were located in the heart of Midtown, around the corner was literally the Empire State Building.  We had a small kitchen which allowed us to keep breakfast food in the fridge.  The only problem was that we were located on the 4th floor and one of the landings was very squeaky, but we survived! 

Grand Central Terminal

Apple just opened their largest store at Grand Central Terminal.  It didn't feel like a store.  It was all open and it basically took up the balcony of the terminal.  

How to Succeed

  I really wanted to see this show.  We were told they sold rush tickets for $30.  We got up early and headed to the theater two hours before the box office opened.  There were already 30 people in line.  We made friends with the people around us who gave us some good insider information about tickets, the show and how to get Daniel Radcliffe's autograph.  We ended up getting third row but they were off to the side and considered "partial view" seats.  But for $30 we loved it!  I'll admit, I was excited to see Daniel Radcliffe in the show.  He was pretty good.  After the show Sean and I ran out to the stage entrance to wait for Daniel Radcliffe to come out to sign.  It was a madhouse!  The highlight was a woman who feigned an anxiety attack to get to the front and convinced the bouncers that her daughter needed to meet Daniel Radcliffe because she made him a gift.  As the daughter was squeezing by to get to the front, she apologized to the crowd saying her mom was a compulsive liar and she was a very bad daughter.  It was classic!  In the end, I got his autograph!  But only after the girl in front of me grabbed my playbill and passed it forward to another person who grabbed it from her to get Daniel Radcliffe to sign it.  Then they passed it on to me.  Very considerate fans.
World Trade Center

 Word to the wise:  You need tickets to get into the memorial.  Get them online and print them, it will save you TONS of time!

I really like how they did the memorial.  I saw lots of it via the coverage during the anniversary but it was still neat to be there in person.  I like having the footprint of the buildings there and the names of all the victims (flights, pentagon, trade centers, first responders and even the 1993 victims) engraved around each building.  The above picture shows the famous tree that survived the ordeal and the new 1,776 ft tall building in the background.

The End
We had a lot of fun during our trip to New York City.  We had authentic pizza, delicious Chinese and yummy Italian.  It was a little bit chilly but our apartment was toasty warm.  We saw almost everything we wanted to see so it was a big success!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Cinnamon Bear!

Can you imagine sitting around this and being entertained for the evening?  People would have their thriller shows like Suspense or Lights out, their comedy shows like Abbot and Costello or the Burns and Allen show and sometimes their were special holiday shows like . . . . The Cinnamon Bear!
I first heard the Cinnamon Bear back in high school.  There used to be an AM station on the radio that would play old radio shows.  The Cinnamon Bear was a series that played everyday between Thanksgiving and Christmas.  It was the adventure of Jimmy and Judy trying to find the Silver Star to place on top of their Christmas tree.  With the help of Paddy O'Cinnamon they go to Maybeland in search of their star.  If you haven't had the chance to listen to The Cinnamon Bear than you can listen to it here.