NYC Part 2 – April 4th – My Birthday!

I woke up mostly refreshed and definitely ready to start my day!20150404_075714

I had breakfast via room service Saturday morning.  Orange juice, hot chocolate, Special K, banana and mini blueberry muffins.

20150404_090644How beautiful is this?

One World Trade Center “Freedom Tower” is one of the most beautiful buildings I’ve ever seen.  I hope to go to the observation deck next year.  It wasn’t open yet this time.

I visited the 9/11 Memorial and Museum first thing Saturday morning.  I knew going to NYC that this would take priority over anything else I may want to see or do.  This place was everything that I had hoped it would be.  I know I’m like many Americans (especially my generation) this was one of the most impactful things that has ever happened in my lifetime.  It changed the way I looked at the world, at life, at other people.  This memorial was exactly what it should have been.  I loved every part of it.  I don’t think I’ve ever cried so much in public.  People were so respectful.  It was quiet, somber but at the same time hopeful.

20150404_091115South Tower Reflecting Pool

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Some of the names that are along the edge of the pool.

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When you first enter this is the picture that you see.  It was taken from Brooklyn just before the attack.  Look at what a beautiful day it was.  It is sad to think about how many lives were destroyed just shortly after this picture was taken.  In this moment though, they were alive and well.

20150404_093158 As you walk down the first hallway, there are quotes projected on the columns and walls and there are recordings of people telling their stories of death, survival, being left behind.  It is so touching.

20150404_093853 They had projected missing posters on empty walls and columns.  They changed over and over.

20150404_094105The Survivor Staircase

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Trying to Remember the Color of the Sky on the September Morning

Spencer Finch (American, b. 1962)
Watercolor on paper

It is composed of 2,983 individual watercolors representing the artist’s recollection of the sky on September 11, 2001.

To read more about Spencer Finch and Trying to Remember the Color of the Sky on the September Morning  you can click HERE and HERE.

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Located on the same wall as the Spencer Finch piece is this plaque.  When I read this I had to read again just to make sure that what I read the first time was correct.  How heartbreaking.

There were two sections that didn’t permit photography (and I definitely understand why).

One was the room that was entitled In Memoriam.  It had all the pictures of every victim along the outside walls with certain personal effects along the inner wall.  In the center was a dimly lit room that had had a revolving name projected on wall, someone spoke the name, pictures were shown and if there was someone willing to speak about the person that was played too.  Some were sad stories of people learning of the loss, some were funny stories and others just talked about the type of person they were and how they would be missed.  I must have sat in here listening to the stories for 30 to 45 minutes.  I just couldn’t seem to get up and walk away.  It felt as though you really were getting to know them.

The other section was about the attacks (1993 and 2001).  This is such a sad

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People still leave flowers stuck into names along the reflecting pools.  Even with all the years that have passed the pain is still fresh here.  Hope and empathy are too.

I walked a little ways away from the Memorial/Museum and came upon the WTC Tribute Center.  This place has all kinds of first hand accounts of that day.  It has personal effects of people and personal stories.  I was able to hear a first hand account of survival from a woman named Maria.  Maria worked for the Port Authority which manages the WTC.  Her office was located there and she survived.  I won’t get into her story because it isn’t mine, it is hers, but I will tell you that her story was very powerful and I’m blessed to have had the opportunity to hear it.

20150404_134545After leaving the WTC Tribute Center I was on a mission for some food.  I had really worked up an appetite from all the walking (and crying like a baby).  I spotted a Burger King on the corner but I didn’t make it that far.  I smelled pizza and made a beeline for it.  I walked into Pronto Pizza and the smell was divine!  Their showcase with all their different pizzas made my mouth water and my brain go into overdrive with the choices available.  I went for good ol’ pepperoni though.  I was so hungry I didn’t feel like I had time to narrow down from all the choices.  I grabbed a coke too and headed back to my hotel room to put my feet up, rest and eat that wonderful pizza!  I ate every last fatty, greasy, delicious and bad for me bite!  It was so worth it!

After I rested I got a cab to the J.P. Morgan Library & Museum in Midtown.

20150404_151120A Certain Slant of Light

Spencer Finch (American, b. 1962)

To read more about Spencer Finch and A Certain Slant of Light click HERE.  20150404_151448J.P. Morgan’s portrait over the fireplace in the study.

20150404_151453Mr. Morgan’s desk in his study.

20150404_151506Stained glass in the study.

20150404_151929I could have spent forever in here!

20150404_152548The Gutenberg Bible at The Morgan.

20150404_152554I thought the details of the Gutenberg Bible were very interesting so I made sure to take a picture.

20150404_194813I got back to the hotel and ordered room service for supper.  I was just so exhausted from the day there was no way I could go out to eat.  I ordered their California Turkey BLT and a side salad.  It was so good!

I was able to Skype with Jason and Rylan before bed so that helped keep me from missing them to bad.  Rylan kept giving me kisses through the phone/camera.  It was so sweet!

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NYC Part 1 – Friday, April 3, 2015

 

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This spoke volumes to me about this trip.  I have never traveled by myself before so this was all new to me.  I had been through New York but had never spent time there.  Everything was unknown and exciting!

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Rylan taking Mama to the airport.  He’s so cute it hurts!

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My first flight wasn’t crowded at all so I had three seats to myself!  It was great!

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This was probably the smoothest flight I’ve ever had.  We didn’t have any turbulence at all.  The sky was gorgeous!

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Hello Atlanta!  I’ve never gotten a good picture of the Atlanta skyline from a plane before.  I’ve always either had someone in the way or it has been bad weather/foggy.

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Lunch time!  I don’t eat a lot during travel.  It seems to just weigh me down if I do and I get really groggy.

I wish I had been able to get pictures coming into Newark airport or when I was driving into the city but it was dark and foggy in spots.

I had a car waiting for me at the airport to take me to my hotel.  I used Dial 7 car service and I highly recommend them!

I stayed at the New York Marriott Downtown.  It was only a couple minutes walk from the 9/11 Memorial and Museum and the room was wonderful!  The staff was extremely friendly and helpful as well.

20150403_225620Walking into my room.

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20150403_225647The bed was so comfy!

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Quick Update and Photo Dump

Okay, I had a few minutes to do a quick update and put some pictures on here.

I’m still going to the Y and taking Zumba twice a week.  I’m still loving it!  I am losing weight and toning up but most importantly I’m feeling great!

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Me and Anna Ruth.  I look weird but whatever…we’re having fun!

I leave tomorrow for NYC and I’m so excited!  I think I have everything ready.  I’ll do one last quick check but I should be good to go.  I think I will do a packing video as well as try to do some vlogging while I’m there.  I don’t know though, I’ll just have to see when I get there.

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The skeptical shopper.

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Ava Braun Crowder giving Grumpy Cat a run for her money!

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My baby in a rare cuddle mood.

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Hanging with Dad

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Sneaky….

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In Richmond for the weekend and Rylan decided that the ice bucket was a great toy and hat.

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He loved the Krispy Kreme hat!

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Climbing all over his Uncle Jerry.  This reminds me of my childhood because I would do the same thing!

20150311_152644Falling asleep on his Sis….so sweet!

I wish I had gotten a few pictures of Momaw with him.  I was able to get video but forgot pictures….smh.  Oh well…next time!

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Playing with part of his Easter Basket from Momaw.  He has a whole collection now of handmade wooden trucks and heavy equipment thanks to our buddy Jimmy.

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He loved to hug the soft rabbit.  He’d say “Awwww…..” and hug it so tight!

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Running around the yard like a wild man!

So far it has been a great start to spring!  When I get back from my trip I plan on starting on my gardening and I’m sure I’ll have plenty of posts on it.

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