it's (just past) christmastime in the city

On Wednesday morning I joined my mom and 21 year old Emily for a trip to the Big Apple.  I believe I've mentioned before that my own 21st birthday celebration also had a New York theme, and that theme was Long Island Iced Teas.

Emily's theme was the Museum of Modern Art.  She really wanted to see the original Starry Night painting by Vincent van Gogh because she is very sophisticated.

A local tour bus company offers day trips to NYC, so we hopped on the bus at 8:30 and were deposited in Times Square at quarter of eleven.  I sat beside Emily on the bus and as we got rolling on the New Jersey Turnpike, Emily pulled out a bag, a mirror, and began applying her makeup, most notably, mascara and eyeliner.

I'm here to tell you that I apply my eye makeup standing in my bathroom mirror in my stationary house, and I still get it all over my face on a not infrequent basis.  Emily applied it while sitting on a coach bus whizzing down the NJ Turnpike at 70 miles an hour and it was flawless.

Maybe I need to re-think my makeup strategy.  Perhaps Matt could drive me around in his old pick-up each morning so I can put on my eyeliner.

When we got to the city we wandered down 6th Ave for a bit past all the fancy business headquarters and to see if we could snag Emily an eligible and financially secure bachelor.  No luck in that department, but we did get our pictures next to these nutcrackers.


We ate lunch at Rosie O'Grady's, and after that made our way to the MOMA.  It was more crowded than we anticipated, but we made a beeline for the fifth floor and there it was, The Starry Night.

I'm no art aficionado, but I will say that the painting was absolutely beautiful in person.  The colors were so vibrant and if there hadn't been a security guard standing there and the consequence of a felony, I would've brought it home and hung it in my living room.

From there we wandered through a few more galleries and then my mom said what I had been thinking, which was "I'm not sure I understand why some of this is considered art."


The next gallery featured this particular larger than life piece of art that to my untrained eye looked like a bunch of crayon and pencil doodles.

People were ooh-ing and ahh-ing, and my mom whispered to us, "I threw away hundreds of pieces of paper that looked just like this when you kids were little."

Sounds like my siblings and I were prodigies whose calling was overlooked.

 After that, we unintentionally but happily walked right into a small cafe offering only one thing: a cup of pour over coffee for $4 flat, with cream and sugar if you so desired.  Nothing fancy and no frills.  We bought a few cups and sat in that fourth floor cafe looking out a wall of windows on the sculpture garden and the city and drank our coffee and chatted and it was lovely.  Not to get all sentimental but it's not lost on me that I enjoy my family so much (and they love me enough to invite me to a girl's day like this).




We walked through the sculpture garden on our way out of the museum, and this was the first sculpture we saw.

My mom gasped, and said "Oh no! That one fell over."

I lost it.  And then we left.

We went to see some other art in the form of diamonds at Tiffany's.  Tiffany's is right next to Trump Tower, so we had to go through a police checkpoint to get there.


 It was worth it though because Emily got a necklace, and my mom was told there are no prices on any item in Tiffany's because your heart needs to fall in love with it first, no matter the price.  My mom's heart fell in love with a pair of sunglasses that the saleswoman then informed her cost FOUR HUNDRED AND TWENTY FIVE AMERICAN DOLLARS, and that love affair ended quickly.

After that, we walked by the windows at Bergdorf Goodman's...

...down 5th Avenue...



...and through St. Patrick's Cathedral.  Mom and Em had been there before but I hadn't, so they sat in a pew while I walked around and to the small chapels behind the altar.  It was so beautiful I almost cried.



We snuck out a side door and made the terrible mistake of walking past Saks Fifth Avenue.  Listen, I am no NYC expert, but I've been several times, and I have never experienced it like this.  We literally could not walk.  It was shoulder to shoulder people, and we just got pushed along with the crowd.  It was impossible to turn back around, so we went with it, but it was a little scary and probably took 20 minutes to move one block.  Because the city was prepared for New Year's Eve, there were metal fences along the sidewalk, so you couldn't even cross the street.  As soon as found a break in the barrier, we crossed the street to Rockafeller Plaza to check out the tree, but since it was so crowded we viewed it from the periphery and kept moving.

This was out front of Saks.  You can see the heads of ALL THE PEOPLE.

We were home by 9 and exhausted but happy from such a fun day!

Yesterday I just hung around, and today my siblings and I exchanged gifts because my brother was in town.  Annabelle opened her gifts too, and may we all be as excited about presents as she was.


We did a sibling pollyanna this year for a change, and my brother had me.  He got me a scarf, a new set of colored pencils, and a giant coloring book of wilderness scenes.

I'm going to go start on it right now.

Maybe next year, we will be visiting one of my own pieces in the MOMA.

Comments

What a fun trip you guys had!

Emily must be super sophisticated... able to apply mascara in a moving vehicle without ending up looking like a raccoon (I'm like you and manage to splodge it everywhere standing still).... wanting to see Starry Night... just generally looking glam? Yeah, not me at all :P

I feel like I often walk through art galleries wondering why things are considered art. Especially when seemingly sophisticated people around me ooh and ahh and I'm all like "is that a squirrel.. or a scribble?".

I laughed out loud at your Tiffany's experience because the same thing happened to me. I'm someone who is like "I can't fall in love with it UNTIL I see the price tag and then we'll talk about whether it's worth it" so Tiffany totally gives me anxiety :P

I think your pencil picture is 1000000x better than the OOF, by the way. What even is OOF. Isn't that the sound you make when someone runs into you? Haha
Brianne said…
That sounds like such a fun trip. Now I really want to go to an art museum with your mom lol. I don't understand some art either...like oof & scribbles...what?! I can do that too! Give me my millions!
Julie said…
That's one thing I think about art museums too...If they consider a red blob in the middle of canvas as art, we all should be racking in the millions!
Leslie said…
Lol! I'm sure you will be featured next year. :) I've been to the MoMa a few times, and went last summer with my 9 month old. They had an exhibit that was a pile of straws. After seeing that, I decided to head out and go see that at home for free! It looks like you all had a great time!
Michelle said…
It sounds like you get your sense of humor from your mom!

It is my DREAM to go to NYC at Christmas time. I spent 24 hours there on a cold March day. If it's going to be that cold, there should be Christmas trees. I'm so glad you all had such a great day! I'm jealous of your sister's birthday. My 21st birthday was on a Monday, and I celebrated by going to class all day.
Sarah said…
I am not an art museum target audience. I make comments about the art being ridiculous too loudly and it embarrasses Christopher. I appreciate a good piece of art (Norman Rockwell forever!) but I have a hard time spending hours in one. Plus they're so quiet and I inevitably get the giggles.
Lisa said…
How awesome you can hop on a bus for a day trip into NYC. I've got my 3 besties from college and we will all turn 50 in the next few years so we are scheming to plan a girls trip to NYC to celebrate!!! I've never been and always wanted to go. I'd love to see it at Christmas, but prefer to do all the sightseeing in warmer weather. I guess we'll have to figure that out. It really is a blessing that you love being with your family. I feel the same and sure hope our kids will have that same feeling now that they are "grown ups".
Rachel said…
I think I experience modern art the same way you and your mom do. Me and Angel basically can't go to an art museum together. One of my little sisters is obsessed with Van Gogh's Starry Night-- I'll have to concoct a scheme to get her there someday. Sounds like a fun NYC adventure!
Evelina said…
What a fun way to celebrate a birthday! We went to NYC the week before Christmas last year and it was SO packed with people! I totally understand not even being able to walk around there. Oh and that OOF print reminds of a poster that would be hanging in an Ikea! LOL!
Evelina @ Fortunate House
Fran said…
What a fun trip!! I've been to New York once before but I dream of going during Christmas time - it seems magical for some reason haha
Lux G. said…
This looks fun! I also like going to museums, churches, seeing new places.
Nice way to spend post holiday.

Happy 2017!
Whitney Damrau said…
What a wonderful day! Christmas time in the city is so magical and I laughed out loud at you mascara comment. Maybe I am doing it wrong too because I always seem to get it under my eyes!!

Xoxo,
Whitney & Blaire
Peaches In A Pod


Jenny said…
What a fun trip! Sounds like you girls had a blast. I've never been there before but hope to someday!
Elle Sees said…
This is seriouslyon my bucket list--nyc at christmas time!! Loved seeing your adventures!
We just missed each other at MOMA! I was there on December 18! Starry Night was definitely the highlight for me. I love those colors. I'm so glad you had a fun time in NYC! It's one of my favorite places. I even love going there during the craziness of the holidays!!
This looks like so much fun! Thanks so much for sharing!

xx
Lauren Elizabeth
Petite in Pearls
What an amazing way to ring in 21! And $425 for a pair of sunglasses - yipes! Love Tiffany's, but man alive! Happy New Year gurlie <3
Green Fashionista
Rebecca Jo said…
Trump Tower - the new White House.
Art is so amazing to me. I've seen some that sells at the HIGHEST prices that I swear, a 4 year old could do. I dont get it. I really dont
Have I mentioned how envious I am of your girls days with your mom and sister? Your trip sounds amazing! And I can barely put mascara on in my bathroom. And that's fairly new for me. Haha. Trump Tower?! That would have been so cool! Happy New Year!
rooth said…
That was definitely a whirlwind trip but I'm also jealous that you can do a day trip to NYC!
Haha, I saw that OOF "art" on your Instagram and I was cracking up. At first glance I thought it was the Ikea logo. haha. To each his own, I suppose!
NYC for the holiday's look truly amazing!! Your sister is quite talented with that mascara I must say. Happy New Year!
Hena Tayeb said…
Sounds like a wonderful trip and birthday celebration.
NYC is at it's prettiest around the holidays.
We are of a similar opinion when it comes to Modern Art.
This looks like such a fun day!! I love your mom's commentary. Sometimes I don't understand why certain pieces are art either! St. Patrick's looks so beautiful! That lady at Tiffany's sounds crazy. I need to know prices before I can decide if I love it lol!
Andrea Nine said…
LOVE this! I took my mom to NYC for her 60th birthday and we had a ball. Met some celebs, went to Broadway musicals and shopped til we dropped. It truly is magical around the holidays. Happy New Year beautiful!!
Doused In Pink said…
What a fun way to spend the day with family! There is no way I could flawlessly apply mascara on a bus either! :)

Jill
Doused in Pink
Jenny Evans said…
I love NYC! Phillip and I went for an anniversary trip a few years ago (we also took a bus) and it was the best. I love your mom's comment about some of the "art." I once saw a video where people tried to guess if something was modern art or a toddler's drawing. They guessed wrong way too often for my comfort.
What a fun trip! I've always wanted to see NYC during Christmas time. I blame it on Home Alone Lost in NY. haha
Jen said…
I love NYC! We were last there 2 years ago, for a week over new year. On new year's eve we completely avoided the whole of midtown because we knew it would be crazy crazy busy! I've never been to MOMA but did see some of Van Gogh's work in Paris and it's so beautiful. I don't get modern art though, I really don't. And I sure couldn't do my make up on a moving vehicle, that's some mad skills right there!
Traci said…
We went to NY for the first time in July. I absolutely loved it. I can't imagine living so close! I know what you mean about St. Patrick's. We went to Mass there & it's just so beautiful. Words can't describe it. Happy New Year!
What a SUPER fun mother/daughter trip!! Ah this is SO up my alley! NYC is my favorite place.... I love a few days to just walk around, so now after this post I'm dying to go back up there that much more!
jenn said…
hey there, lady. first of all, i'm one of those gals who loves fresh boxes of crayolas, so i love that picture of the sharpened colored pencils.

second, i'm thinking about making a trip to new york city for a writers conference. so thanks for posting about your adventures.

third, that oof painting... i can only say that someone must've thought it'd be most impressive to get a canvas that consistently a vibrant blue and then get those light yellow letters to be so perfectly centered and well-rounded... otherwise, yeah. that's crap.