Earlier this month, I was invited to a birthday party at the Marcia Favrot Gazebo Restoration, located behind the Garrison Institute. It is a chill spot with views of the Hudson and has an off-the-beaten-path vibe.
If you are in the area, looking for a relaxing spot, check it out.
In March, I took part in the ‘Eat Something New in Queens’ Challenge. The purpose was to step out of your comfort zone, try new restaurants and food, and support local restaurants around Queens. Although I took a little staycation during the challenge, I still tried to participate. All the food I tried was excellent!
Here are the restaurants I tried.
Nneji is a West African spot in Astoria. It’s more a pickup type of place but has fantastic food. Don’t feel shy and ask the owner for recommendations on what to eat.
Coco Malaysian Cuisine in Elmhurst.
I’m half Filipino, so Filipino food is life, but I did find a new dish I had never had before at Kabayan Authentic Filipino Cuisine in Woodside.
My family stayed at the TWA Hotel in JFK, in Jamaica, during the challenge (more on the hotel in another post), but we still tried some great food.
Yardie Bistro was in the food court area of the hotel.
Splurged a little at the Paris Cafe by Jean-Georges. It was well worth it!
I had a blast trying all the food. The challenge has an awesome Facebook group page that offers food ideas and recommendations year round. If you love food and live in Queens, or don’t mind traveling to the borough, join the group!
My daughter Maxine celebrated her first birthday on December 19. She is growing up so fast. I really can’t believe it! My cousin’s girlfriend told me about a fun Chinese ceremony when a baby turns one. It’s called the zhua zhou ceremony, where symbolic objects are laid out in front of a baby to grab. Whatever the baby reaches for and plays with can indicate future employment prospects or interests.
We are a little late, but I thought it would be fun to do! I researched and found more information and potential objects to use via Gathered Gifts’ blog story.
Here is a list of some objects and meanings.
I substituted the following:
Abacus to Cash; Paint Brush to Hair Brush; Calculator to Whiteout; Chicken leg to Bamboo; Lego to Puzzle Piece; Microphone to Fan; Stethoscope to Thermometer; Sword to Shield
Moment of truth. Maxine’s top three…
1. Shallot = Intelligence
2. Measuring tape = Designer/Architect
3. Shield = Law enforcement
Rounding out top 5…
4. Cell phone = Tech Entrepreneur
5. Celery = Industrious
Not bad! LOL. I can’t wait till she is older to see what she likes and is passionate about.
It has been quite some time since I’ve written. 2020 was a mess and motivation is hard to come by these days (especially since it’s taken till April to write this lol) but I’m trying to move past it and so it’s 2020 recap time to cleanse my soul.
In June, my husband and I started a little herb garden. We started a little late in the year and a couple of months later all the herbs died but it was a fun experience.
I have many plans for 2021. I’m excited to see what I can make happen.
Last week, Andrew and I accompanied my Aunt and Uncle to the Winter Lantern Festival at Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanical Garden in Staten Island. The holiday light show had over 1000 lanterns of various figures – mostly animals and flowers.
In February, I was lucky enough to visit the museum twice, once with my Mom and another time, on Valentine’s Day <3, with Andrew.
Mom and I focused on seeing the exhibits that were closing. I especially wanted her to see the Michelangelo one because she is quite religious. Here are my favorite shots (one not of the exhibit!).
We also got to see the Rodin exhibit, which was displayed in a single corridor. These sculptures were amazing. Mom and I spent the most time here, taking in all the beauty and laughing at some of the more interesting ones. Here are our favs!
Our last stop was the Japanese Bamboo exhibit and the Chinese Courtyard. They had one huge bamboo sculpture, which I believe was specifically made for the room, but I could be wrong. It was pretty interesting. It reminded me of the bamboo exhibit many years ago on the rooftop. That was one of my favorite rooftop exhibits at The Met. Mom LOVED the Chinese Courtyard; I took a lot of solo shots of her in here.
On Valentine’s Day, Andrew and I got to explore the museum after hours. It was pretty cool, less of a crowd and they had curators in various locations to give you more information. The whole museum wasn’t open, only certain sections but we still got to enjoy the beautiful paintings at the Thomas Cole exhibit, the Frank Lloyd Wright room in the American Wing and our favorite, Temple of Dendur. It’s usually crowded in the room, so it was pretty sweet that we got to see it so up close and personal. Andrew and I ended our night of exploring in the Dining Room at The Met where we had a very romantic dinner =).
I first heard about the show through my boyfriend, Andrew. I got tickets to see Sleep No More in October and he mentioned a couple of interactive shows he heard of that would be great to attend, this show being one of them. I finally got tickets to see it with him and two of my friends, Adrienne and Christine, on a Friday night.
The show is actually inside a pop-up space with the best outdoor bathroom trailer I’ve been to so far :). The atmosphere is very dark, clubbish, with old school paintings everywhere to set the mood and show timeline of Russia in the 1800s. Seating is a combination of bar stools, tables and lounge tables. I paid for bar stools but once we got there, we were given a table, BONUS.
The show is based on the novel War and Peace, which I never read but overall I enjoyed my experience. It was very interactive, the performers dance and sing all around you. Due to our location, we always had a performer near us and we also had a few sit at our table as part of the show. The performers and wait staff also do there best to try to get you to understand who is who. I also like how they modernize the music and how they give you some what of a small summary to follow if you want via the program. It might have been too whimsical for Andrew but the ladies and I enjoyed it.
Here are some pictures:
Program…you’ll need it
Pricey food snacks
I spent about $134 per ticket. We received some snacks (perogies, bread and pieces of vegetables and olives) but we bought a cheese and charcuterie plate, shrimp cocktail and plenty of drinks. Andrew, I believe, spent around $200 on us ladies. I don’t regret my night trip to Moscow, it was quite entertaining, but I’ll pass on the food and drinks next time.
I have been wanting to see the Holiday Train Show at the Botanical Garden for some time now and I thought it would be fitting to start the new year with an adventure.
I went with my friend Adrienne on New Year’s Day. I met Adrienne on the D train, we then took the bus to the garden. I don’t normally ride buses so I was amazed to find out that you could actually track the bus by accessing a QR code at the bus stop. People must use the service as Adrienne and I were the two lonely birds at the bus stop but as soon as we saw the bus 10 people magically showed up. It’s a great tool to use in the future to beat the cold, lesson learned.
We got there around 3pm but had to wait to enter for 3:45pm. We found the holiday food court, while we waited, and ate but it was pretty expensive and there was a just a small selection.
The train show itself was great. All the materials used were apparently plant based. All around were NY bridges and mostly well known buildings and landmarks. Here are few pictures of my favorites:
Building with a train
Spent a total of approx. $40 ($25 admission, $10 for food, $5 for transportation). I would definitely go again but next time I might go at night, when they have ‘Bar Car Nights’. The garden had a couple of nights in Dec, where adults can go and see the show and have cocktails. Probably more my scene and hopefully a lot less crowded.