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A 30th & 60+5th Birthday Celebration in NYC

Once upon a time, or three months ago, my mom and I traveled up to New York City for a four day adventure to celebrate a year of milestone birthdays for the both of us. It was an incredible trip and it's been long overdue to write about it on here. But, the trip happened right before I hit my 1st trimester work/sleep/eat dinner/sleep/repeat hibernation and now it's time to play catch up. So, ready for it?

My mom threw out the idea of going to NYC back in January, and we booked the trip in March... two days after I found out that I was pregnant. I'd be heading to NYC right around 7-8 weeks pregnant, and figured that it would still be an ok time to go.

We woke up at the crack of dawn, got ready, and headed for the airport. 

We hopped on a quick two hour flight up to NYC and we were at our hotel by about 10:30am. Since it was my first trip and we didn't know the city super well, we chose to stay right off Times Square at the Marriott Marquis.

It was a great location and the best part is that when we arrived, they checked us right in. How awesome was that? We were planning to check our luggage with them and go out and explore before coming back to our room later that afternoon. That alone made the hotel 100% worth it to me!

The weather was beautiful the entire time that we were in town and it made walking around so easy. We set out on foot and wandered around Rockefeller Center before making our way to Central Park. I think that I could have spent days in Central Park and would have been 100% ok with it. We took a break and stopped at The Boathouse to grab a drink... wine for mom, a glass of water for me.

That evening, we ate dinner around the corner at a fantastic little Italian place before walking to The Gershwin Theatre to see Wicked. It was AMAZING and I cannot recommend it enough to y'all! I was blown away by it. I've never been a big fan of going to see plays or musicals, but if I can see more that are along those lines, count me in.

I'm 99% sure that I was asleep within 2 minutes of my head hitting the pillow that night.

I thought we walked a lot on Thursday, but it was nothing compared to all of the miles and places we walked on Friday! Originally, the plan had been to go see if we could get in the background of the Today Show, but sleeping in a little longer sounded oh so much better.

We started off the day by walking from our hotel to Chelsea Market {about a 2 mile walk} for breakfast and shopping before heading up to the Highline to walk around a bit. From there, it was a day all about being spontaneous. We looked to see how far the 9/11 Memorial was and then trekked 2.6 miles through Greenwich Village and Tribeca down to it. From there, we walked half a mile to see the Charging Bull before deciding we had gone far enough and probably needed to start making our way back in the direction of our hotel... considering we were now 4 miles away from our hotel and had no intentions of taking the subway.

Somewhere along our walk from Chelsea Market to the 9/11 Memorial, we had passed what looked like a few great restaurants with outdoor patios that would be perfect for stopping for a mid-afternoon snack. We made it back to one of them {a Mexican restaurant} and settled in for some chips and salsa, water for me, and a drink for my mom. Once we were done eating and we stood up, we both knew we were in trouble.

Y'all, I was positive that my legs were going to fall off. My legs and my feet were so dang tired from all of the walking! We were both limping around who-knows-where in NYC and trying to find a cab or an Uber or anything to take us back to our hotel. We had all but given up home when a cab driver pulled over and I threw myself into the backseat before he could tell us that our hotel was too far away again.

I will stand by my Jack Rogers all day long. I wore them on my wedding day, I've worn them traipsing around Asheville, Charleston, Savannah, Charlotte, Louisville, Nashville, and everywhere in between, and I wore them traveling through Europe. But, in NYC, they did not hold up. My feet had nineteen blisters on them from my Jacks. It's inspired me to find a cute pair of tennis shoes before my next big adventure... because I'm never doing that to my feet again.

That night, we limped downstairs to one of the hotel restaurants overlooking Times Square to have a late dinner. It was well earned - we had walked 25,297 steps and 11.15 miles that day!

They say NYC is the city that never sleeps, but I'm pretty sure they all sleep on Saturday mornings! My mom and I got going super early on Saturday {after our early bedtime on Friday} and we had the city to ourselves. There was nobody at all in Times Square!

We couldn't go to New York without my mom getting a photo in front of Radio City Music Hall {you know, since she was a former Rockette and all... or at least that's what I grew up believing!}

& we couldn't go to NYC without me exploring the Upper East Side and the steps of the Met, a la Gossip Girl.

We walked through Central Park and y'all, we needed to be in workout clothes. Every single person we saw was in some sort of athleisure outfit, was running around, or headed off to a kids baseball game. In our "normal" clothes, we were so out of place! There was plenty of people watching to be had though and I spent most of the time checking out what strollers people were pushing around. True story: they were all UPPABABY strollers. Every single one. I don't think we ever saw anything different.

By this time, we were starving, so we walked through Central Park over to the Upper West Side and grabbed a table at the first place we saw. It was definitely brunch hour by this point and everyone in NYC was up and ready to chow down on some brunch.

Anyone recognize this hotel?

After more wandering and more shopping {without ever finding a single thing to buy}, we headed back to the hotel for a drink and a snack. We caught the end of the Clemson spring game back in our room before going out to dinner. Dinner was... less than impressive. Totally not worth the time or the effort. But, we did catch Times Square one last time at night so that was kind of cool.

Sunday morning, we woke up to typical early April NYC weather. It was about 40 degrees outside and was a little drizzly - a far cry from what our weather had been like Thursday through Saturday! It was a good thing that our plan was just to hit the road to head back home.

Getting back home was a disaster. Our flight took off just fine from New York, but we had to connect through Atlanta to get home. Want to know what happens when you fly through Atlanta in the spring or the summer? You're going to have a delayed or cancelled flight thanks to weather. Sure enough, when we landed, we had texts from both my dad and Patrick that our flight to Columbia had not been delayed but cancelled.

We decided not to rent a car {because we'd be driving straight into the storms} and did whatever we could to reroute ourselves back close to home. In the end, we were scheduled on a flight to Charleston that would arrive around 11:30pm so my dad could pick us up and we could spend the night on Kiawah. Somehow... there was another flight from ATL to Columbia that evening and our luggage made that flight {???}, so Patrick went to the airport to scoop those up for us. Should it be at all concerning that he could just walk into Baggage Claim and grab our bags with nobody noticing?

Whew, all kinds of points to you if you made it to the end of this incredibly long post! Other than the trip back to the south, it was an awesome birthday trip to New York City!


  1. What a fabulous trip! We LOVE New York City! Y'all hit so many of the great spots: High Line, Central Park, Wicked (one of my favorites!), the Met, etc. And what fab weather y'all had for most of your trip! :)

  2. Such a great trip to take with your mom!! We did one like this before I got married with my sister as well and it's just such a great time! You definitely hit all the great spots during your trip and I wish we would have seen Wicked! xo, Biana - BlovedBoston

  3. Oh my goodness, what an awesome adventure! We're huge fans of the city. I grew up about 45 minutes from NYC, and I have been wanting to go back with Ryan forever. SO glad you got to explore with your mom - and see Wicked! Isn't it seriously the BEST show?!

  4. Sounds like you guys had such an amazing trip to NYC! That food looks so yummy and your weather couldn't have been any more perfect with the exception of Sunday but at least that was your scheduled day to head out!


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