New York City Vacation

Long weekends are the best, aren’t they? Well, they’re even better when you extend a long weekend to make it even longer… and travel to NYC to visit your sister and brother-in-law! Over Labor Day weekend, I flew up to the city for five full days of fun with two of my very favorite people in the universe! Despite a 3:30am wake-up (seriously), I was overjoyed to arrive at their apartment by 8am to kick-off our long weekend together. Bridgette and I are huge fans of itineraries and making plans/reservations, but we equally love to leave enough room in our itinerary to relax and be spontaneous. You know it’s going to be a good trip when 1. your sister sends you an extensive Google doc filled with all of your favorite things to do/see/eat/explore in NYC and 2. you get to do all of these fabulous things with two of your favorite people. Needless to say, I was oh-so-excited about this trip!!!

Bridgette and Rob are pretty ecstatic to be living back in NYC, and their adventures are wonderfully chronicled in Bridgette’s blog, Let Love Guide Us. If you need any NYC (or Charlottesville or South Africa or Iceland, etc etc) travel advice, tips, adventures, or itineraries, you don’t want to miss out on her amazing blog. Just sayin’!

Bridgette and I kicked off of Friday fun with THE most epic, beautiful, wonderful picnic in Central Park. I’m not really kidding when I say that picnics are my love language, and when it’s a picnic filled with my best friend, gorgeous cooler weather, a setting in Central Park overlooking a pond and castle and willow trees, rose wine, lemon feta dip, baguette and crackers, brie and goat cheese, prosciutto, and strawberries… well, perfection. Oh, and macrons to top it all off. Why yes, it was the most idyllic few hours chatting with Bridgette and thoroughly enjoying ourselves.

Once Rob was off work, we headed to the Met to explore some of their favorite exhibits and galleries. It’s such a grandiose museum (and was surprisingly busy at 6pm on a Friday), and I loved poking around quickly. We headed up to the rooftop of the Met for cocktail hour and the most stunning views of the sunset over Central Park + the city. I loved seeing this view, and it was so picturesque!

I love that we cooked most dinners at their home (the cost of eating out all the time in NYC is no joke!), and I’m continually impressed by their cooking skills and menu selection. We always enjoyed a nice glass of wine (or Maker’s Mark + Coke!) while cooking and devouring meals. I love our endless chatter and great conversations. Oh, and the view from their apartment is unreal! I loved watching the sun begin to set, then the sunset, and then seeing all of the lights emerge around the city.

We headed to the US Open all day Saturday (AHH!!!), and I’ll definitely share more about that very soon!

Sunday was our “day in the life” day in the itinerary! We cooked breakfast together, went to their church (it was fun seeing friends I’ve met before!), and enjoyed a delicious lunch at Shake Shack. Wandering around the Upper East Side, admiring the beautiful homes, poking in adorable shops, and taking it all in is one of my favorite things, and it’s always astonishing how much you end up walking – which is a good thing! We watched a good amount of the US Open on TV, curled up on the couch and just enjoying relaxing time together.

On Monday, we headed to the Tipsy Parson in Chelsea for brunch. I’d seen this adorable cafe in many Instagrams and on blogs, and it was fun to check it out in person. And the food was really great, too! Bridgette and I were also huge fans of their infamous book wallpaper & had to be sure to get a good shot of it. We wandered around Chelsea Market (I could spend so much time here!) and walked along the High Line. I love the unique views and cool history of the High Line, and I almost always visit it when I’m in NYC. We wandered all through the West Village with a destination of Washington Square Park and NYU in mind. My uber-smart sister just started grad school at NYU, and it was a joy being able to see the buildings where her classes are and scope out the school!

Rob had to head to work on Tuesday, but Bridgette and I enjoyed a quiet – but fun – day together before I flew home. We grabbed authentic NYC bagels, which was high on my priority list. I mean, you just can’t beat a hot, toasted everything bagel loaded with cream cheese! We attempted to walk off our bagels as we strolled around their neighborhood and wandered around their local park. After a little more US Open watching and such, we said our goodbyes as I headed home. I am so thankful I’ll be back in NYC for Thanksgiving, though! Two months is long enough to be away from Bridgie, for sure!!

As usual, my visits to New York are always filled with the best people and countless happy adventures and memories. I’m so grateful to Bridgette & Rob for their hospitality and zest for life!! I also can’t wait to share more about the US Open soon, as that was a definite highlight. And NYC, I’ll see you again quite soon!

Happy 2nd Anniversary, Bridgette & Rob!

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Happy, happy 2nd anniversary to Bridgette and Rob, my incredible sister & brother-in-law!! It’s a little surreal that their marvelous wedding day was two years ago (where does the time go?!), as it seems like it was just yesterday. I absolutely love reminiscing back on their wedding, and it bring back so many joyous, love-filled memories! Bridgette and Rob are such an inspiring couple, and they’re two of the most genuine, loving, encouraging, wise, adventurous, hilarious, selfless, Christ-following, wonderful individuals in the world – and they’re even better people when they’re together! It makes me so unbelievably happy (“happy” seems too trite of a word!) that my best friend and sister found the love of her life and her lifelong best friend + husband, and I just adore these two. Right now, they’re celebrating in South Africa – not a bad way to celebrate a second anniversary (and the end of business school!).

I’m sharing a few of my favorite images from their wedding day, all from the incredible Robyn Van Dyke Photography. I love taking a walk down memory lane, and these photographs hold so much value, meaning, and the most joyous of memories. It was a beautiful, love-filled, perfect day!

Ceremony Venue: University United Methodist Church
Reception Venue: The Carolina Inn
Wedding Gown: Allure
Getting Ready Robes: Etsy – Just Cottons
Bridesmaid Dresses: Alfred Sung by Dessy
Groomsmen Ties: J.Crew
Florist: University Florist
Hair: LULA Hair & Makeup
Make-Up: Susan Ballard
Cake: Sugarland
DJ: Mark Woodell
Videographer: Inkspot Crow

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Their incredible photographer, our favorite Robyn Van Dyke, shared many more stunning images from two years ago on her blog!

Happy 2nd Anniversary, Bridgie & Rob! Love y’all oh so much!!