With all of the attention that I’ve given to the time that we spend at our lake house in New Jersey, it’s easy to forget that we spend most of the week’s waking hours in New York City.
Maybe it’s because I’m from Toronto but I still get butterflies when we cross the George Washington Bridge each weekend and head back into the city.
I love the transition between quiet weekends in the country and our busy city life. Once we park the car, Emma usually joins to help walk Jackson around the block for his final evening stroll, hairbrush in hand.
The irony of this situation is that no matter how hard I try, now matter what sums of glittering gold and cheap Barbie merchandise I offer, Emma will not allow me to come within 3 feet while brandishing a hairbrush. But hairbrush as purse-like accessory? Why not…
Our lake house neighbors are shocked that we’re able to keep everyone, including our dog, alive and free of Rickets when we’re required to take an elevator to get outside. The inconvenience! The lack of fresh air! The sunlight- does your family get any sunlight in that box?
Don’t get me wrong, life in the country has its benefits….but city life has some pretty good perks too.
That view never gets old. Sunset, buildings, silhouettes. And don’t get me started on sunrise….
I love getting up early. I’m able to steal some quiet time with Jackson before the city wakes up. Once in a while I’ll catch a glimpse of the full moon over the Hudson River…
This guy is all smiles during our walks. Less so when it rains and he puts on the brakes, locks his leg joints, and leans into the direction that faces the apartment. But when the sun is shining down, he can sniff a few rear ends, sneak a sip or two of fresh rainwater? That’s when the lips curl back, the smile breaks out and does his doggy prance. I love him.
Morning walks seem to offer the best views…. Hudson River Park without the usual bustle; the Meatpacking District, traffic-free cobblestone on full display; a distant Empire State Building that will soon be filled with slow-moving lines of people from all around the world.
Although we primarily eat at home, we find time to indulge in the occasional treat. This is one incredible food city.
Billy’s for after-school cupcakes…
Haven’s Kitchen when the kids are in school and I’m in the mood for a solo latte & croissant.
Or a cookie. A gigantic chocolate chip cookie sprinkled with Maldon salt, which I might as well christen “the lunch ruiner”.
I atone for these sins with a stop at Organic Avenue to pick up a gingery Royal Red juice. Plus, I love this quote by Micheal Pollan, which they feature smack dab in the center of their wall. Nothing could better represent my philosophy about food.
Then we have Forager’s Market where I can forage to my heart’s content: locally-grown fruit and vegetables, almond milk cold brew, triple cream cheeses, truffled sausage – it’s not where I do the bulk of my shopping, but it’s where I buy the good stuff…The credit-ruining, husband-complaint-inducing, fancy-$10-food-magazine kind of stuff.
I always seem to leave with a handful of their goat milk caramels stashed in my pocket….
Murray’s Bagels is across the street, making it an occasional pre-preschool pit-stop…
Even better is to bring home cream cheese + tomato + red onion on an everything bagel, and eat it in the comfort of my living room.
And we are 1000% spoiled by having a Doughnut Plant only a few blocks away. Spoiled, I tell you. Vanilla Bean for the kids, Crème Brulee for me. Except for the day when I took this picture and they were sold out and I had to go for some hazelnut nonsense. Not the same, trust me on that crème brulee tip. Donuts don’t get better.
But aside from eating a lot of good food, we’ve been spending most of our free time at this place: Chelsea Piers. It’s our home away from home, where the kids come after school to hang out. Gymnastics, tennis, this place has everything. It’s a zoo and often makes me want to run and join the Amish, but then I glimpse the boats, and the mini carousel, and the sun streaming through the floor-to-ceiling windows, and I breathe….and think…”Chelsea Piers, I forgive you.”
Then it’s back home, dinnertime, and time to give the kids a bath.
It’s a busy week in a busy neighborhood in a busy city but it seems to work. Most of the time at least. Have a great week everyone.