Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Our NYC Trip - Part Two

 Do you mind if I share just one more post from our trip to New York City?  I wanted to share the rest of our trip with you, and truthfully, I took so many pictures while we were there that it is hard to narrow it down to just one blog post!

 When we arrived in New York City, Country Living had so kindly arranged for a car to pick us up at the airport... the driver was holding a sign with my name on it, and as we got inside I wondered what he thought about us country-bumpkins.   

(I so badly wanted to get a picture of my husband carrying his hiking backpack with all our clothes inside... I get tickled just thinking about it!)    

   I know my eyes were huge as we drove through Queens and then Manhattan to our motel.  I didn't know which side of the road to look!  Our hotel (the first picture above) was a perfect location... we were within walking distance to so many attractions. We were on the 10th floor and we loved the amazing views out the windows. 

 We didn't waste any time getting started; after checking in, we were off, walking through Times Square and then up to Central Park.  The people... the architecture... the fast pace... it was incredible to take in. 

 I gasped when I first saw Central Park.  Here we had just walked through throngs of people and beside huge buildings and then there was this.  Central Park was beautiful (I think I said something to my husband about it looking like the movies)... I would have loved to have had time to walk the entire park. 

 The next morning we were up bright and early as we had reservations to visit the 9/11 memorial downtown.  Amazingly enough, I had made reservations almost immediately after finding out we would be traveling to NYC, and it was fortunate since after the hurricane hitting they were only honoring reservations already made.  

We also had our first subway experience!  Somehow we made it to our destination without getting lost (smile).  Walking to the memorial, we saw this beautiful old church in the midst of skyscrapers.

We were amazed when we saw the construction of the new towers.  Above is the tallest of the two towers, which will be the tallest building in the United States.  I love the description of the memorial in the brochure we picked up.  It says that the memorial "commemorates the lives lost, recognizes the thousands who survived, and allows visitors to come together again in the spirit of unity that emerged in the wake of 9/11". 

 The memorial was beautiful and yet sobering.  Two pools were placed where the original towers stood and waterfalls cascade into the pools, which then descend into a center empty space. 

 The names of the victims are engraved in bronze panels that surround the pools.  A sign was posted beside the panels inviting visitors to touch the names engraved.  As we walked along, I had a lump in my throat.  And when I saw the name of a woman with the words "and her unborn child" beside it, I was blinking back tears. 

The memorial was amazing.  We were thankful we had the opportunity to visit it and it's something we'll never forget. 

Afterwards, we walked down to the bay to get a glimpse of the Statue of Liberty.  I took this picture of a grocery store on a corner... the city has small grocery stores and delis everywhere.  I could hardly believe the variety of flowers available at this store.

We spent quite a bit of time walking Battery Park alongside the bay.  It was a beautiful day and the park was peaceful and quiet.  


 That evening, after navigating the subway system like professionals (smile) back to our hotel, we walked to 5th Avenue.  It's amazing that this picture doesn't show the vast amount of people... we were often rubbing shoulders with others.  Of course we had to visit F.A.O. Schwarz where we bought the girls their presents from the city (smile). 

 The next morning brought many butterflies with the anticipation of the awards ceremony.  I showed you in my last post the outside of the Hearst tower, but here is a picture of the inside.  We had just ridden up an escalator beside a waterfall and here we got on the elevator to take us up to Country Living.

 We were greeted so warmly and we got to tour the offices of the magazine and see things like a peek of the February issue and their prop closet.  

(They tried to get out of showing us the prop closet as it was "messy"... but then somebody had the nerve to raise their hand and say loudly, "Oh, PLEASE?".  Yes, somehow my shyness evaporated at the thought of not getting to see the prop closet!) 

After the tour, we met with Rust-Oleum and then headed up to the 44th floor for the beautiful award lunch, which you can read about here if you missed it. 

Our last stop of the day was the Good Housekeeping Research Institute tour, which was so fascinating.  

I wish I could share a photo of every room, but we saw everything being tested, from appliances to paper towels to beauty products.  We also got to see the test kitchen... can you say dream job?  I've noticed the Good Housekeeping seal many times, but I didn't realize that Good Housekeeping honors a 2-year warranty for every product in their magazine.  Neat!

And can you believe there was a room tucked beside the labs that looked like this?  The rooms here are replicas from the original Hearst Tower and the dining room pictured above is often used for entertaining. I loved looking at the antiques displayed... even the rug is original.

It was such an amazing trip! I never imagined I would have the opportunity to visit New York City and I'm not sure I'll ever have the chance to go back.  But if I did have another opportunity?  I would in a heartbeat.

I joked later that we saw many sights and all kinds of people while we were there, but we definitely only saw one John Deere hat (smile).  I'm thankful for my travel buddy... the trip would not have been what it was without him.

And I want to thank you again... I would not have been there without you.  Yes, I know I didn't win Reader's Choice, but your visits and comments are often what have kept me blogging!

Have a wonderful week!  

   P.S.  I also wanted to thank my friend Brenda at Cozy Little House... she asked me recently if I would answer some questions for her blog about blogging called Cozy Inspiration and she had so many kind things to say.  If you'd like to read about my thoughts on blogging and photography, you can check it out here


  1. So glad you enjoyed the city - it's an amazing place and I can only imagine how it was for you - a first time visitor! I was just there the other night - walked by that diamond studded Harry Winston building - how cool is that!

    I haven't had the chance to go to the 911 memorial yet - but will be going as soon as it warms up.

    Random fact -did you know the Statue of Liberty is in NJ?

    Glad you had fun - and congrats again on your well deserved win.

  2. Lovely tour of your trip to NYC. It's quite a city, isn't it? We have two children who live in the city, one in Queens and one in Manhattan and it's always fun to visit. So much to see and do!
    Mary Alice

  3. I just love NYC! I love hearing about your trip and I am so glad you went to new york being you showing up with the hiking backpack and john deere cap! Congrats again, i am still thrilled that you were recognized.

  4. I am so glad you loved NYC. I went to school there- right in downtown Manhattan. Love the John Deere cap! Congrats and I am so happy you won- Blessings- xo Diana

  5. This is a great post! I am new to your blog and popped over here from "Thistlewood Farms." I have your blog to be a very warm and inviting place and i look forward to visiting again soon. I'm so glad you had such a wonderful experience in NYC. My husband is from Manhatten and all of his family still live there. Although I have now been there many times I am always blown away by the very things you mentioned in this post. Isn't it just so amazing how you can be in a city with millions of people and then go and find a quiet spot in Central Park? I fall in love with that city every time I visit. Thanks you for sharing your wonderful photos from your trip. Your photos of the 9/11 Memorial brought tears to my eyes. I hope that you have a blessed week and holiday season.

  6. What an amazing trip, Andrea! I'm so happy for you ~ I have loved your blog from the beginning. You just have a very special way of showing us the simple pleasures of living a country life. Congratulations!

  7. Andrea, thanks so much for sharing your trip with us! I've never been to NYC but it's on my bucket list.

    You so deserve this award and I am so happy for you!

    Congratulations again!


  8. Such a great trip you had, thank you for sharing! I have never been to NYC, my husband goes all the time for work, but I never get to go :(
    Maybe someday...
    I love the shots of Country Living and Hearst Tower...so fun and fascinating to see!

  9. It would have been disappointing had you not shared more! :) What a fabulous trip. Your photos are beautiful. I hope I get to go to visit someday! I also enjoyed readying your interview you gave the link to. Thanks!

  10. It was such a wonderful trip and your photography is beautiful! The memorial looks amazing! Thank you so much for sharing your heart and your stories :)


  11. Simply wonderful. Thanks for sharing.:)

  12. Congrats again Andrea. So well deserved and another life memory made. Wow, New York...New York! So glad that not only Country Living, but readers as well can see that you are a very grounded young mother and wife. Your talents and care continue to shine through your blog. I love that your husband wore his "country boy" hat. I hope he realizes as well, that he provides so much more than a hammer and nails. Thank you both for sharing and being an inspiration. I love your blog.

  13. Such an amazing, once-in-a-lifetime trip! Thank you for taking us along with you. I would so love to see the memorial. I always think and say that I could never live in a big city. Not even in a small city. (I live outside a tiny town, pop.609)--but then I see something like your post, and I start thinking maybe it would be kinda cool to live in New York. If one had bundles of money, of course. I am so glad your sweetie was able to go with you, and that you took loads of pictures, this was an experience you will remember forever, and those photos will be so precious in years to come.(and he is so darn cute, that smile of his is so sweet!)

  14. I love seeing every single picture. I am so happy you had this experience. I bet it want be the last.

    I really love the John Deer Hat. I love someone being who they are all the time wherever they may be.


  15. Wonderful post. I've only been to New York once and it made a big impression on me. I'd love to go back and spend a whole day seeing Central Park. Even with living in Chicago, big cities always excite me! Your photos are just great!


  16. I'm so glad you loved NYC. Sometimes when a person visits for the first time as an adult it can be overwhelming. I was born there, and raised in New Jersey just outside the city, so we made many trips in to visit aunts, uncles and cousins. At Christmas we would wander the streets wide-eyed as we enjoyed the amazing store windows. We'd see a show at Radio City Music Hall. And one of my best birthdays was when we saw the NYC Ballet at Lincoln Center. New York is my favorite city in the world (of those I've visited). Again, I'm happy you liked it so much and had fun. You must promise yourself to go back! And congrats on your win

  17. I think I liked the backpack and John Deere hat the most :)

    Andrea I thought that you'd WON readers choice...not sure if you had typo'd or what when you said that you had not...I went back and re-read your original post, then went on to CL and all. Visited the RC blog ( it was nice ) but evidently your judges choice is better as YOU won the trip and RC did not! So congrats again! Since you evidently won the higher award in CL eyes :)

    In the end, it was a wonderful experience and trip and getaway for you and your husband and I am glad for you / though as many times as I voted you should have had both, lol! :)

  18. Oh my goodness what an amazing trip. Looks like you all had so much fun. We have never been there but after seeing your post it makes me want us to hop on a plane and go!

  19. I love New York...the excitement, the beauty...I have not seen the "memorial" yet...they were still working on it on my last visit there....I am so happy that you enjoyed your trip and was able to share your incredible experience with "your travel buddy"...


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