New York Part 2

If you’re on the edge of your seat after reading about our first day in New York, you’re in luck! If you forgot that we were ever in New York since it was almost a month ago now, you’re in luck too! Here’s Part Two. We decided to spend our first full day of the trip in Brooklyn, since that was where we were staying and would be heading back into the city for dinner with one of my closest friends.

I started the day off with coffee from downstairs in the lobby and got ready for our 40 minute walk to Doughnut Plant, the next vegan doughnut place we wanted to try. If you’re concerned for my well being after the sheer amounts of doughnuts consumed on this trip, I should let you in on a secret: Doughnuts are O’s favorite food. Honestly, they’re probably his favorite thing period. He has a spreadsheet. A real life, Excel Spreadsheet for doughnuts across the world. Doughnuts in Paris, Italy, Santa Barbara, St. Tropez, Destin, Africa, Dallas, Spain…you name it, he’s eaten a doughnut there. And the doughnuts get a ranking…and the carrot cake doughnut from Doughnut Plant in Brooklyn made top 5. TOP FIVE. (Carrot cake isn’t my thing and when we get doughnuts, I stick to whatever chocolate one they have and call it a day.)

From Doughnut Plant we wandered in and out of shops until we came to a children’s store I’d really been wanting to visit called Norman and Jules. I can’t even begin to say how wonderful this little shop is. We spent an entire hour there and it’s pretty small! They had so many of my favorite handmade toy brands, but the best part of visiting curated little shops like this is discovering new brands for kids. We picked up a xylophone for each of them to put under the tree on Christmas morning and also our “we’re home!” gift for each of them- a wooden taxi for him and a matching pink car for her. Also I did a little bit of Christmas shopping for the other kids in our life because it was so, so good.
We headed back to the hotel to recharge before heading to Midtown to meet up with my friend after work. She’s been a fashion designer for Aiden Mattox for six years in the city but I’ve never been able to actually go into her office. Seeing as we met as fashion design majors in college, seeing her living out her dream and all her hard work coming to life makes me so giddy and proud. After getting the grand tour of her office, we headed right across the street to a little hole in the wall for  pizza. We always choose a meal or two to eat dairy on a trip and really just enjoy ourselves (since neither of us has an actual intolerance) and I’m so glad we did! This pizza was so good and the garlic crisps they bring before the food actually arrives may just rival the pizza itself! We spent so many hours at this table that we actually boxed up the pizza we split thinking it had to be time to say goodbye, but ended up finishing it by the time we actually left. Those are some of my favorite nights! Catching up with great friends over great food.

Once we got back to the room, we really took advantage of Postmates delivering just about anything to anywhere and ordered Van Leeuwen Ice Cream. I read over and over that they had the best vegan ice cream in the city and needed to see for myself…and yes. It’s true. I got the peanut butter and it was absolutely insane! It tasted even better than regular ice cream! We decided we’d order it online when we’re hosting really big parties or having friends stay with us to serve with warm cookies because it’s just that worth it (O may or may not have ordered it a couple weeks ago…)

The next day, we woke up to snow. Not just sprinkles, not just flakes, but a full on complete snow storm. All of my New York at Christmastime dreams had come true and I was elated! So elated, in fact, that I chose to A. Curl my hair. (What?) B. Wear a very fancy hat. (What??) C. Skip the scarf and opt for the thin gloves. (WHAT???) I made awful snow day choices, friends. Especially since we decided to tackle Soho all day long which meant lots of walking, lots of snowfall, and lots of time regretting the mornings’ choices. You live and you learn, right?

By the time we made the quick walk from our hotel to the Subway, I was so cold and my hair was straight up raggety. The heat of the subway mixed with the moisture of my hair created a nice little Diana Ross situation which was in full effect by the time we walked from the Subway station to lunch at By Chloe. Thankfully, lunch was fantastic enough to make me completely forget what I looked like and want to relive the meal over and over again for all eternity.

We both got a quinoa kale salad which was so good we ended up having it delivered to our hotel for dinner later in the afternoon. It was incredible- and I’m not a “salad is life” kid of girl so that means something. I also got the banana pancakes and I don’t even LIKE bananas so that really means something. By Chloe is fully vegan and has such refreshing, delicious options that the majority of their customers aren’t even vegan-the food is just that delicious. We lingered longer than we needed to, gathered up all our warm thoughts and headed back into the snow armed with a very strategic list of all the shops and cafes I’d settled on seeing that day.

Just a tip- if you’re traveling and walking around multiple places in the same area, dropping pins on Google Maps helps to show the best plan of attack. I do this every time we’re in a new city and I’ve researched a few places in walking distance and it’s a game changer.

We visited my favorites like Ulla Johnson, Space N.K, Sezane, Maman and Creatures of Comfort while managing to stop in to random new boutiques that I’d never heard of. The one place we knew we must try out was Dominique Ansel Bakery and man, the line and cramped/smooshed standing room was more than worth the wait. I had a cookie that tasted like angels hand crafted it just for me and it took all of my strength to stop at just one. We spent over an hour strolling through a bookstore that caught my eye and I would easily go back to Soho just to visit that place again. We found some journals for my dad and brother, a new prayer journal for me that perfectly matches my blush leather bible with gold lined pages and some cute ornaments and books for the babes.

We left our cool New Yorker dreams behind and ditched the subway on the way home in favor of an Uber instead. O is a boxing fanatic and his current favorite, Lomachenko, had a boxing match that night in Madison Square garden. We’ve been to fights in Vegas before but never in New York so while I can’t stand watching people punch each other in the face, it felt special to be there with him for that one. We had only a couple hours before we’d need to be ready for fight night but that rest time was wonderful. The By Chloe salad came just in time and served as the perfect early dinner since I planned on ordering more pizza when we got back that night.

Lomachenko won, the pizza was downright dreamy and my chest was more sore than ever (why must you always fail me, pumps?) and leftover doughnuts served as the absolute perfect end to a day so lovely it might just be one of the days I remember forever.

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