Sunday, September 14, 2008

summer part one

The summer went by too fast! Before I get too deep into school I thought better blog, otherwise it'll never happen. Due to a crashed Hard drive I only have pictures from a few events this summer. I'm very sad about my loss, but I will recover. 

Summer Highlights:
Lizzy came to visit for two whole weeks! (More below)
Rilo Kiley Concert
"New Restaurant night" with Dana and Leland.
Walks through Williamsberg and McCarren Park
Running along the Hudson River. 
Lizzy got engaged!
Sleeping in Central Park. 
Making friends with the Red Mango people. Actually I'm a little ashamed.
Cooking with Jamar.
Tilly and the Wall concert.
I became an official New York resident!
Trip to Boise and Utah. (More in future blog)

I had the Pleasure I having my friend Lizzy come out and visit. She didn't really care to do too much of the touristy stuff because she has been there done that, so we had a pretty open schedule to take advantage of the city as we pleased! We of course took pictures...

We started the fun with these two, Jordan and Patrick. We had a delicious Fourth of July breakfast of German Pancakes. Compliments to the chefs J and P! 

We ate the occasional Red Mango. 

We spent some time with Dana and Leland.  Dana is my friend from school and work and Leland is her boyfriend. We have spent many nights in this park listening to the Piano guy that is always there, and people watching. 

We made a stop at Babycakes of course. 

We got caught in a down poor when we could not get into a free Avett Brothers concert. We ran into a gazebo, along with half the city. It was raining so hard that we were getting sprayed with rain anyway, so we said "who cares?" and ran around in it. Much more fun that waiting two minutes for it to stop. 

That same night we jumped on a train and headed to the Jersey shore. Our friends Aundi and Ted were living right on the beach while Ted was selling security systems for the summer. We arrived around eleven p.m. and went straight to the ocean. This was the best break from the city I could've asked for. We loved it so much that we went back again. A very big thanks to Ted and Aundi for letting us hang with them and crash in their awesome apartment. 

Liz reading her favorite book.

We searched for sea glass, and hit the jackpot. 

Love the collapsable hat

When we made it back to the city we went to see our friend's band, Someone Still Loves you Borris Yeltsin. 

We spent time in Central Park...

Went to an amazing Austrian art gallery featuring Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt to name a few.

lizzy found a new boyfriend but then dumped him before she left so she could get engaged to Seth. Sorry Sherrod.

Chilled with Jamar and wore pink pants.

I could go on but I think its time I stop. Thank you Liz for a wonderful visit. Thank you for my brown bag work lunches, making my apartment cleaner than it ever is, bringing me Utah bread, meeting me after work, helping me shop, and the list goes on... You just being here was enough for me. 

Sunday, June 15, 2008

To My Dad

So I have decided to not beat around the bush. Obviously Dad, you are not opening anything up from Hillary today. How do I know this? Because I have not sent it yet. I know, I know I am a horrible daughter. They say its the thought that counts, so I have decided to put that saying to the test. Here are a few things (in the food category) that I thought of while thinking about the things you love. Do I not deserve a few points for at least knowing what your favorite things are?

Sara Lee Pecan Coffee Cake. We have been eating this for as long as I can remember.

Apple Pie. When I think of happy moments in life I think of sitting at the kitchen table peeling apples with you and learning your method for a very delicious apple pie, which does include Mom's killer crust.

Black licorice. I know Mom wont kiss you when you eat this and none of us understand your love for it.

Cadbury Fruit and nut bar. This is your staple. The night before fathers day, "Mom, what should I get Dad for Fathers day?"
"Run to the store a pick up a Cadbury Fruit and Nut Bar."
Do you really even like them that much?

Caramel. Not much to say except that I know you are picky about what you consider good caramel.

Henry Wienhard's Root Beer. I think the men in our family feel more like men when they drink this.

Watermelon!!! Oh the knowledge I have learned from you about watermelon. How to pick the ripe ones, how to slice, the art and method to eating it, etc... Umm, I am starting to think you are OCD. I love that in the summer time I can always count on finishing my day eating a slice of watermelon with my dad.
Moms Strawberry Shortcake.

Mom's Key Lime Pie. Man Mom, you sure figured out the way to dads heart.

Bottom Line. Dad, I love and admire you greatly. So many happy moments in my life revolve around you. I know these things are just food, but I do feel like I know you pretty darn well. I am so thankful for all the little, and big things I have learned about life from you. We have so much fun together and that is something I do not take for granted. Thank you for being my Dad. I love you!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


One of my all time favorite New York moments happened last night. I turned out the lights in my apartment, sat in the dark and watched the New York sky glow with constant flashes of lightning. It was one of the best thunderstorms I have ever experienced. The spire of the Empire State Building was lit behind the church out my window. I saw lightning connect with it at least five times. Sometimes I feel so separated from nature in the city but last night brought me back to the times I would sit on my front porch, wrap up in a blanket, and watch the mountains light up in the midst of a thunderstorm. Do I sound corny? Definitely.

View from my window.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

In the City and on the Road with the Parentals

My Parents came to visit and go on a road trip to celebrate the end of the school year. There was never a dull moment! I am so thankful to them to take ten days out of their already busy lives and make this such a wonderful vacation. We sure know how to have a good time!

We took so many pictures so I will just get right to it.


To start off on the right foot we head to Westville for brunch.

We shopped and went to the green market then came home to chill before the evening... I found this picture that must have been taken by my sneaky Mom.

And across the Brooklyn Bridge to Grimaldi's and ice cream per my Dads only request of what we did while in the city. I didn't fight it, I love pizza.

And we were greeted by a very long line. Two hours goes by pretty fast with a good game of twenty questions. I learned my mom is a pretty competitive twenty questions player. I did not know that was possible.

Not the most flattering picture, but I think it captures the moment quite perfectly.

Dinner with Karli, Reagan, and Lexia.



Watkins Glen is a village on the southern tip of one of the Finger Lakes, Seneca Lake. It is also home of Watkins Glen State Park, which was the main attraction for us.

And this is Watkins Glen State Park. Parts of Last of the Mohicans were filmed here. You enter through that little cave on the right hand side.

What you see on the other side is amazing. The pictures do not do it justice.

We hiked it in the evening...

And again the following morning.

This is my Mom's happy place.

And this is the above view of the same place.


Palmyra is a beautiful city. I really appreciated the visit here in that it helped me visualize the restoration of the Gospel.

I thought this understated temple was beautiful tucked away it the trees.

One of the only pictures with all of us not taken by an outstretched arm.

We also went to the publishers house where the first 5000 copies of the Book of Mormon were published.

On the way to Niagara we decided to take the scenic route and drive along Lake Eerie. It was massive. It felt like we had reached the ocean.


We saw the falls from both the Canadian side and the U.S. side. Maybe I am naive but I never realized how close civilization was built to the falls. The Canadian side felt like Las Vegas but It had great views. On the U.S. side the area next to the falls, goat island, is a state park. Thank you to the visionaries who saw the area as a place to be protected from civilization.

We decided to do Cave of the Winds. You get in a elevator that takes you to the bottom of the falls. It was quite an experience to get that close. It's pretty amazing how loud the falls are and how insignificant they can make you feel.

Thank goodness they provided us with slickers and sandals. Grandpa is such a good example to the grandkids.

I loved these sandals so much.

Another picture of my Father that I cant help but laugh.

I was so glad to put my slicker to good use!
Love my Moms expression.


In the spirit of spontaneity we decided to stay for a night at a Bed and Breakfast/farm at Lake Chautauqua. It was on our way to Pittsburg and both my parents had been to the lake before because our good friends, the Smails, have a lakehouse there.

The Great Tree Inn and Stables

Side note. On our first night in Watkins Glen we stayed at a B&B as well. I was inspired. I am now very keen on the idea of opening a bed and breakfast. This farm we stayed at in Lake Chautauqua got my mind rolling even more. The couple who ran this place, Louie and Sam, were amazing. They are from South Africa and have made their lives interesting to say the least. They met when he was a captain on a sail boat and she was the chef. Every five years or so the tend to change the direction of their lives and do something different. She got sick of seeing palm trees so they decided to open a B&B in this small city. They have done an amazing job running this place. It had so much character , it was cozy, and the breakfast was amazing. When we drove up a horse and her colt ran right up to us. Later Sam and Louie told us that they had bought the horse, Maggie, from the Amish to save it from the slaughter house. Apparently she was just too stubborn to carry out the tasks she was needed for. To Louie and Sam's surprise Maggie turned out to be pregnant. So they got two for the price of one! We got to watch the nine day old Colt follow Louie around like a puppy. The cult would and nuzzle and hug as if he was a small furry animal. To sum it up this was a place I will remember forever and hopefully be able to model my own B&B after.

The lake. Not exactly lake season.

The Smails Cabin. The yellow one.


Cranberry is a town outside of Pittsburgh. My Dad had a meeting with a client here who found out about him because he designed the house pictured below. It belongs to the Dick and Lynn Smail, Parents of Rick Smail who lives in Park City. Same Smails who own the lake house. I am so thankful they let us crash with them. They are wonderful people to be around and such gracious hosts. It was also a treat to get to see the house in person. Dad, I love your work.


My Dad and Mom taught me about falling water when I was a little girl. Basically every art or design class I've had, Falling Water is mentioned. To actually see it in person was breathtaking, and I am not being dramatic. The architect Frank Lloyd Wright played a key role in my Dad becoming an architect, and this was my Dads first time seeing the house as well. We got an in depth tour and saw everything from the boiler room to the owners bedrooms. It all just confirmed Wright's brilliance and amazing attention to detail.

Its timeless. Walking through, there is nothing design wise that really screams that this house was built in the 1930's.

Entrance from the living room to the waterfall.
Pretty amazing stove. Its interesting how today the Kitchen is the main attraction in many homes. In 1935 it was a place only the servants saw.

Wright promoted organic architecture. The building should grow from its surroundings. The huge boulder in the picture was already there so wright incorporated it into his design.

After Falling Water we bombed it back to New York City. About a five hour drive. When we got back we just kept on going. We went to Better Burger, Shake Shack, Mom and Dad when to the Cloisters while I worked, and we met up for our last New York meal with my friend Dana.

Thank you so much Mom and Dad I enjoyed every minute of this trip. I loved listening and singing along to 96.1, hits your mother used to listen to. I loved the fact that we didn't plan each day out and that just did whatever we felt like. I love that we never ran out of things to talk about. I loved eating dessert after every meal. Really I just loved being with you guys and I am so grateful that you guys made it possible for me to see and experience all those wonderful things.