Monday, January 24, 2011

Woes and Wins of Winter

I woke up this morning to a brisk 7 degrees. Seven. It got me thinking about winter and how it's possible that I am managing my most fretted about season. Rest assured that I am pushing through it, learning lessons quickly, and trying not to let the "winter blues" set in. Here are some positive and negative observations I have made, just in case you're considering a move to an arctic tundra any time soon.

-Taking an extra 2 minutes to put on a jacket, scarf, mittens, and snow boots
-Remembering all of those said items before you walk down 5 flights of stairs
-Losing gloves
-Slush, big puddles of slush
-The crabbiness of commuters when it's raining, snowing, or sleeting
-The feeling of wind whipping through buildings, and how you never expect it. It takes your breath away.
-Seeing people that don't have a nice, warm apt to come home too on the street. I recently learned there are 37,000 homeless people in New York City.

-A reason to buy lots of cute scarves, mittens, and a new "sleeping bag" jacket.
-Flannel sheets, ahhh, there is no safer place in the world than in a bed with flannel sheets during the winter.
-Tea, coffee, hot chocolate, cider, and soup
-Running in Central Park covered in snow and on the Hudson, watching ice chunks float by
-Excuse to stay in and watch movies
-Kids wrapped up in snow suits, who can never seem to put their little arms down.
-Dogs wearing sweaters and little paw protectors, I always smile at them.
-Shopping for spring clothes-gives you hope this may end.
-The joy of eating in a cozy restaurant with the windows fogged up, or even just walking by one and seeing people enjoy that feeling.

So see, there are lots of reasons to complain about and celebrate winter. It's a season like any other, and will be over before you know it. The arrival of spring will probably never mean more to me than this year. Until then, I will keep enjoying the wonders of January, February, and possibly March, although I am hopeful.

Stay warm friends!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Oh Martha!

Everyday this weekend, I woke up around 4:10 AM. Just woke up, mind started racing, and I couldn't go back to sleep. Then today, it dawned on me, I was just excited. Excited that it was the weekend and that I had fun things planned for the day. And what a great MLK weekend it was! I slept in, ran on the river and in the park full of snow, had brunch with friends, had a taco night and played games, saw "The King's Speech, went to church, AND got to see the Martha Stuart Show tape this morning!

We waited outside "on line" (northeastern term) in the quite brisk morning air and were directed inside the studio by some very Martha-like interns, dressed in burberry scarves. When we had checked our coats and gotten settled, the audience director, Joey Cola, came out to pump us up! He is such a neat guy, I bet you have seen him if you watch the show at all. He explained the segments and then we taken into her show's studio! The place was filled with busy little producers, camera men, lint rollers, light checkers, sound checkers, and important looking people with headsets. It was all very impressive! Everyone was focused on making everything "just perfect."

As the time ticked down to start, I looked around at the audience. Everyone was dressed their best for Martha. The show had emailed out last week that we were going to be on the "HOT" show filled with hot food, guests, and crafts. (What is a hot craft?) So, we were to wear hot colors like red, orange, or pink. People followed directions very well. I felt a bit blinded as I am quite used to living in a sea of black now.

The show began, we clapped and cheered, and the segments began. There was a super hot, French chef making excellent looking shrimp and pasta, a designer named Zac Posen who showed off new pieces and dyed pillow cases with Martha, a gadget guy from the NY Times, and a hot pepper expert. We got to drink hot chocolate, clap, say yummmm, take home a chile pepper cookbook, and meet Martha's dogs after the show. Not Martha herself, but her dogs.

It was a great time! Thanks to my friend, Susan, for getting tickets. We finished off our Martha morning with a decadent brunch of buttermilk pancakes with caramelized bananas and cinnamon butter at Cookshop! We also saw Dean Sheremet aka LeAnne Rimes ex-husband at brunch. Susan has the best eye for the celebs. We did some research and oggled as he walked to the bathroom and back.

Great friends, fabulous weekend, best city! So blessed! Wonder if I'll wake up at 4 AM tomorrow? Doubtful!

friends all dressed up in HOT colors

the greenhouse set

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Going Postal

Wow! Has it really been three weeks since Christmas? I can't believe how fast time has flown. I apologize for my absence to the blogging world. The last couple weeks have been dedicated to getting "back to reality." I had a great holiday in Texas, but it was hard to get back to city mode again. As happy as I was to be back, I forget about packed subways, the 5 floor walkup apartment I live in, COLD weather, and the hustle and bustle of it all. It's good to be back though and I have just passed my 6 month anniversary in NYC! I am already scheming a big one year anniversary party for August!
Today I wanted to share with you an amusing observation I have made over the last several months. We begin at the post office. I went to the pleasent post office in Amarillo to mail three giant boxes back to the city full of Christmas goodies and that's when it really hit me-NYC post offices are war zones. They are hostal I tell you. You walk in and feel the negative energy surround you. I go quite frequently to pick up packages, and usually wait for about 15 minutes each time. It's fine, I expect it now, but it's given me some serious observation time in that dungeon. One immediatly notices the mail workers are behind bullet-proof glass. I thought this was awfully strange the first time I saw it. Is it really neccessary? Six months in and I can tell you, yes siree Bob it is!
The usual suspect walks into the office and lets out a big sigh. I am especially fond of the ones that voice their frustration. "Oh, I picked a great time to come to the post office," and "unbelievable", "sh**, is this really the line," and "I don't have time for this." Then they get in line, shift back and forth, and invariably are the customer whose package has been lost, after they've waited in line for 20 minutes. (twenty minutes is essentially an hour to new yorkers)
Once, I even saw the mysterious post office manager come out because the lady in front of me was throwing a fit. She was like, "You are disrespecting me and I've got witnesses." I was the only one behind her, loved getting included in that drama.
It sounds as though I am being dramatic, but I am telling you these are not isolated instances. It's EVERY time I go there. Let it be known that I am prepared to one day see the bullet proof glass be tested.
realization of the long line