We survived!!!

We survived our first very NYC Day! Yesterday we hit the streets in hopes of becoming new yorkers. It was an awesome day! It started well and it ended well! Our goal when we left the house was to find everything to furnish our apartment. We need a couch, chairs, dishes, rugs, basically everything you need for daily life. We ended up with a set of cups and a frying pan. I think that online shopping might be our best bet. I had these big dreams of finding the most perfect unique piece of furniture in a tiny boutique. The closest we came was a bright orange sectional futon. Literally a futon. It was horrible. But desperation for a couch almost tempted us.

The day started out perfectly with a smiling baby and a winning result for Zack's favorite soccer team! Go Arsenal!!

Then we got ready for the day and headed out to attempt the subway! I'd say our first ride was a success. Okay, so we had the attendant yell at us, and missed the first train, and got off a stop early, but we did meet a really nice man who helped us figure out how to pay. And I think we managed to look like we belonged! Unfortunately, Gunner won't remember any of it because he slept through both subway rides. Classic Gunner.

does anyone's 6 month old make it through the day in one outfit?!?!

We wandered around the city, somewhat aimlessly for hours. We stumbled upon Central Park! I can't believe I didn't take any pictures of it!! But I did take pictures of some of the amazing flower stands and my lunch! We looked up the block we were on and tried to find the restaurant most out of our comfort zone. That happened to be Jerusalem Restaurant, which, contrary to what you'd assume, was a Greek restaurant. They had delicious wraps. I had the chicken Kebab and Zack tried the Lamb Shawarma!

While sitting waiting for my lunch, I got a very pleasant surprise when my cute nephew called me on FaceTime. He got bored quick though and I got to chat with my sissy! Thank heavens for Technology!! It makes Utah feel a little closer.

After lunch we met up with my very best childhood friend Ellen! She lives in Brooklyn which is so close, but so far away! Its probably only like 15 miles away, but its a solid hour and a half on the subway! Luckily, everything exciting is smack dab in the middle of us! It was so fun to see her and I am excited that we can start hanging out more! Its been over ten years since we've lived in the same state!

On our walk to dinner Gunner was feeling really social. He was perked up in his seat and was smiling and showing off his new waving skills (its insanely cute!!!) People were like falling all over themselves for him. But, can you blame them?! He's seriously like the cutest thing I've ever owned.

After dinner we started our trek home. Somehow we had wandered like more than 30 blocks from where we started (which is nothing by NY standards). Luckily, they have a subway stop every few blocks. I've decided that subway is the way to travel. You just sit back, put your feet up, take a nap, read a book, knit, ect.

All in all it was an incredibly full and exciting day! I think that NYC is so much less intimidating than I had prepared myself for. I can see how people fall in love with it. There is a distinct pulse and energy. We saw restaurants and shops of every ethnicity and type. I feel like you could find anything you need or want within 10 blocks (except a couch or bedding apparently).  It has so much to offer! I can honestly say we didn't meet a single rude person the whole day. We probably have Gunner to thank for that.

Last night as I started uploading my pictures from the day I had my sweet baby boy snuggled up next to me chatting away. I was overcome with gratitude and pride. I am overwhelmed and humbled by this amazing opportunity Zack, Gunner and I have! I cannot wait to explore for the next nine months! This week I'm starting with our neighborhood! There really is so much to see within walking distance (including a Target!!!!). Thank you to everyone who pushed us to come here and do this! I'm so glad we did!!
Love and Miss you all!!!

P.S. A bunch of people have asked for pictures of the inside of our apartment... but its a total wreck right now. Its a bed and a few piles of clothes mixed with suitcases. Once we've gotten in cleaned up and semi in order I'll send pics!

P.P.S. Leave me comments. Just for fun?!?


NYC Bound... literally

Well we are officially NYC bound!! Literally. I think I'm on the Jersey Turnpike? (Why do I feel like I should be doing freaky dance moves?!?) 

We flew into Baltimore on Wednesday to visit family and now my cousins Pat and Sam are driving us up to the city today. Can I start calling it that yet?!? Anyways, we've had a blast visiting with My Aunt Bobbi, Uncle Bob and like 15 cousins! As a kid, I used to live out here. I was in Maryland for 4 years and Virginia for 4 years! It's a little weird how much the East Coast feels like home! 

I'm so glad we got to spend some time here before all the scary stuff happens! It's been a really awesome little adjustment period. I'm adjusting to not being "home", but without being out on our own yet! On Wednesday night my cousin Katie hosted a big dinner and almost all of my VA/MD cousins were able to come! It has been 9 years since I've seen my cousins Brittany and Felicia. How does that happen?!? I'm determined to not let that happen again!! 

As I'm sitting in the very back of the van next to a wall of luggage I'm feeling rather sentimental.

 We are embarking on a life changing adventure and I'm inexplicably calm.Well most of the time I am. I go through moments of intense anxiety, but it only lasts a few seconds, then it is quietly replaced with peace and confidence in the decisions we have made. I feel like we're exactly where we should be, doing exactly what we should be. That alone brings me so much peace! I'm so grateful God has a plan for my little family (because we sure as heck don't have one). We are basically living and breathing by faith these days! 

It's sort of surreal how blessed Zack and Gunner and I have been! We are surrounded by so many amazing people! I really hope our families and friends understand how much they mean to us! Without the love and support and insane generosity of so many, this move couldn't happen! It is because of their constant support and belief in us that we feel like we can do this! The relationships that we have are what make this move both possible and incredibly painful. 

We're about 20 minutes from city limits and I better start getting to know my new home! Stay tuned for pictures and another post once we get to our new apartment!! AAAAAHHHHH! Unreal. 


P.S. did I mention we got into student housing?!?!? Another story for another day! 


Exploring the city... Kind of

T-Minus 18 days until departure. I’m freaking out… partly because we have yet to find an apartment. We have plane tickets, so we know we’re going. We just don’t know where we’ll sleep… So  what. We’ll figure it out right??? I hope.
So in all our apartment hunting we’ve found that it’s incredibly difficult to find and pick an apartment without being there. Everybody wants you to come and see the place and sign paperwork there. We feel like we would like to see them in person, maybe smell it, make sure it doesn’t wreak. Check for rats, ect. Plus, neither of us knows much about New York so we’ve had a hard time deciding on a neighborhood and how far is too far from the school, or from a subway stop. Being a million miles away really complicates things. So one of the first things I’ve learned about New York is... (drumroll please)... try to go visit before you move there. But, If you’re like us and don’t get a chance to visit before your move, take advantage of Google Earth. Have you used this before??

I have spent hours and hours on Google Earth lately. It’s amazing! I type in the address and I can see how long it will take to get to campus, the temple, central park, anywhere. I can see the route if I’m walking, if I’m taking the train or bus, if I take a cab, even if I’m biking. Then, my favorite part STREET VIEW. Seriously whoever invented this deserves the millions and billions of dollars he’s making off of it.

Here’s a link to the Funniest Google Street View Findings . I haven’t quit laughing. Maybe #35 is my favorite. But seriously Google Earth is the greatest thing to ever be invented.
So as I’m looking at apartments and they say “GREAT NEIGHBRHOOD!!” I can pull it up and see that none of the signs are in English and there are some sketchy characters hanging around. I can also see how close things are to the projects. Which, it turns out, EVERYTHING is close to the projects because there are over 300 different project developments in New York City. Luckily, they aren’t all equally dangerous.

But, street view is unreal. I can “walk” the route to the closest park; I can see what restaurants are on the street. Once we actually have an apartment picked out, you know I’ll have that whole neighborhood memorized. I won’t even need GPS because I’ll already recognize it. Okay, that’s maybe an exaggeration. I’ll definitely still need GPS (note to self:  always carry a cell phone charger). But really, Google Earth has given me so much more confidence and made me so much more comfortable with the city. Believe it or not you can really get a feel for a neighborhood just by exploring online.

Now, if we could just get an apartment figured out already we’ll be good to go! I am so excited and it’s all I think about, but there is this tiny piece of me that is just screaming like a little girl. I’m terrified. I don’t know how we’re going to get it all figured out and make it work, I just know that we will. This is an opportunity people dream of and I am going to try to take advantage of everything it has to offer. I think we’ll make a New York Bucket List so we don’t miss out on any of the amazing and unique things NYC has to offer!

I’m learning that I’m going to be a very very small fish in a pond bigger than I could ever imagine. Like it’ll be more like the ocean and less like a pond. I think the best way I have found to prepare myself for this move is to get comfortable with the city(via google earth). I have “walked” up and down hundreds of streets and I’m getting really excited. However, I don’t think I’ll ever really be fully prepared for how my life is about to change.

I’m grateful to know he next step in God’s plan for our family. Mostly I’m just glad to know that he has a plan for our family. I know that moving to Hawaii was such an amazing growing opportunity and it was truly where we were meant to be. I cannot wait to see what God has in store for us as we take on this next huge adventure.
Thanks for reading my rants!