Mamma Sifrit

Hey readers! 

Feels like I haven’t posted in awhile; the blog can wait – adventure can’t! But I’m back and ready to give you a recap on this weekend! 

Preeti had to work the weekend (so sad!) but my mom was able to catch a flight up here for the weekend! 

Friday we had lunch in battery park and then rejoined once I got off work. We spent time in the Flat Iron district. We had a Nutella and strawberry crepe from the Nutella bar in Eataly and some Mac n’ cheese from Bleechers.  We decided to just sample some food from several different places. We concluded the evening walking down the esplanade and looking at the One World Trade Center at night. It is absolutely stunning! 

  
Saturday we started by enjoying breakfast in union Square before getting on the Q to Coney Island. We walked the beach, Boardwalk and played some ski ball. It was an absolutely gorgeous day out! (I even got a little tan/burn!) 

  
We got back on the Q and made our way to Brooklyn Heights/promenade. We walked around a bit, decided it would be an awesome neighborhood to move to if school or a job allows me too, before finding a pizza place and sitting by the water. 

Walking is a common theme this summer – which did not change this weekend! We proceeded to walk the Brooklyn Bridge and enjoyed the views. 

  
After arriving in Manhattan we checked out the South Seaport Market. Once we saw the parts were closed we decided to take the Staten Island Ferry to the other side and come back just in time to see the sun set behind the statue. I would post a picture, but my mother has all of them on her camera. Stay tuned…

Sunday was by far no less busy! Again we had breakfast in Union Square before heading to the Highline. We started at 30th and made our way down to the Chelsea Market. We again decided to sample a few different things to enjoy all the great food New York has to offer. 

Since it was still gorgeous outside we went to Central Park. This time further north since mom hasn’t seen the resoivor. This place is extremely peaceful and offers beautiful views of the city. Again, one of my favorite places to go! 

The weekend went by extremely fast. I’ve missed my mom a lot so it was really great to see her. A little less than 3 weeks and I’ll be back in Orlando and can see all my family! 

Until next time,

Jennifer 

BAILEY WAS HERE.

Hey guys!

Jennifer here… Preeti unfortunately had to work most of the weekend so her adventures are put on hold until further notice. (So sad!)

This weekend my sorority twin Bailey came to NYC and we had nothing short of a fantastic and amazing adventure.

Saturday morning we hit the ground running at 8 am. First stop – 102 floor of the One World Trade Center. The 360 views of Manhattan and surrounding areas were fantastic! The observation floor opened only a few weeks ago and it is awesome to know we were one of the first tourists to visit.

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View from the Top

After taking in all of Manhattan we could see, we walked through the 9/11 Memorials, down the Esplanade (one of my favorites!), to the Wall Street Bull and then down Wall Street. We had to stop in Tiffany’s to marvel at all the gorgeous accessories. We continued to walk around the Financial District for awhile before meeting up at Washington Square Park with Preeti for lunch. We ate outside and had a quick conversation before Preeti headed to work and we headed out to Coney Island.

Coney Island was a new destination for both Bailey and I. We didn’t realize there was beach access! We decided to walk down to the water and came to the very quick conclusion that New York beaches are in no way, shape or form like Florida beaches. First off, the amount of people on the beach was insane! It was hard to even get to the water because of how many people were there. Second, the water was freezing! Our beach exploration was short lived.

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Go Carts

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Cool Snapchat Filter

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“Beach”

Coney Island is basically a giant year-long fair. There are rollercoasters, rides, games, and of course fair-food. Bailey rode a few rollarcoasters before we decided to ride the gocarts. Let’s just say, we might be a little too big for those. However, it was incredibly fun and exhilarating. After a funnel cake and a few rounds of skiball we were ready to head back to Manhattan.

We rested for a moment before heading out to Times Square Forever 21 (it’s 5 floors!). Our goal was to find Bailey a new Taylor-worthy outfit for the TSwift concert she went to Monday night in DC (so jealous!!!). After 3 hours, most of which we wasted in dressing room and cashier lines, I can say we were successful. At this point it was 10:15 and we were starving. We walked clear over to Grand Central Station trying to find food. For being the “city that never sleeps” you would think there would be places open for dinner! Nonetheless, we had Shake Shack at Grand Central for dinner and then called it a night.

Sunday morning was not by any means less busier. We started the morning at Hillsong NYC for a wonderful sermon and worship. We grabbed a quick lunch at Panera before heading out to get lost in Central Park. We were successful. We walked all over Central Park finding the paths less traveled and all the unique offerings the park has. We also stumbled upon a Carousel and decided to relive our childhood. We eventually found a shaded area (it was almost Florida-like out) and decided to just lay in the grass, but ended up falling asleep for a short period of time. Central Park is the only place where you can be in the heart of the city but yet find peace, quiet and tranquility. It is beyond fascinating.

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Central Park

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Central Park Carousel

From Central Park we headed to Chelsea Market, walked around for awhile, and then headed to Brooklyn. We had pizza at Julliana’s which was founded by Grimaldi (where Whitney, Preeti & I ate pizza last week). We managed to eat an entire pizza, just the two of us. I don’t know if that’s something we should be proud of or concerned about… Either way we burned the calories off by walking the Brooklyn Bridge. The sun was starting to set so it was absolutely gorgeous. Upon arriving on the other side we set off to find cheesecake (somehow we still had room for more food). We started walking but realized that once again that everything closes before it really should (why NYC, why?). We ended up finding a wonderful crepes place instead. To conclude, we ended up walking from the Brooklyn bridge back to my dorm on East 10th. Crazy distance but it was quite enjoyable.

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Brooklyn Bridge

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Brooklyn Bridge

This weekend was absolutely perfect! I was so excited to spend time with my best friend, twin, and sister. I am so happy she could come and that we could explore new places in New York. I am also unbelievably jealous that she’s saw Taylor Swift last night.

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Until next time,
Jennifer

American Weekend (with Whitney!)

Has it really been a week since Whitney was here?!

Last Thursday, Jennifer’s friend Whitney flew up from Orlando to visit. Perfect timing as it was the 4th of July! Per our summer’s theme, we spent lots of time walking around the city. This was Whitney’s first time in the city and it was a necessity to be able to take it all in! All of it….so stay with me and you too will be on a virtual tour of NYC…

Thursday night after picking her up from Newark we saw the the Rock, St. Patrick’s, the Empire, the Flatiron, and Washington Square Park. A lot to see in a few short hours!

Friday was a packed day! We started with Union Square, made our way through Chinatown, Little Italy and Soho (again, all walking…). We proceeded to see the new World Trade Center, the 9/11 Memorial fountains and the civic center.

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Whitney

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Jennifer

Moving on to Wall Street we enjoyed a small parade celebrating the 4th of July. There were many veterans in the parade, in their uniforms. It was very neat!

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Wouldn’t be a proper NYC trip without visiting Tiffany’s!

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Wall Street

We saw Jennifer’s office building, the bull, and then came to the conclusion that we needed to sit down for awhile or just not walk anywhere for awhile. With a spur of the moment decision, we decided to take the Staten Island ferry to see the Statue of Liberty a little closer. However, we were one of the last ones on the ferry and couldn’t find a great view. Preeti and Whitney proceeded to fall asleep on the ferry which sums up our energy level at this point. Once we got to Staten Island we decided to camp out at the doors to the next ferry, so we could be one of the first ones on to get a nice view of the Statue. It was worth sitting on the questionable floor for half an hour. The view was fantastic and the weather was perfect. We captured great views of Lady Liberty as well as the NYC skyline, specifically of the Financial District.

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Beautiful Manhattan

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Lady Liberty

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Skyline Selfie

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#throwwhatyouknow

Once back in Manhattan, we walked through battery park and most of the Esplanade. We headed back to the dorm once we finished, since at this point it was nearly 5 pm. We took a “powernap”, rehydrated, and prepared ourselves for another round of walking.

We spent the evening in Brooklyn with some classic New York style pizza. We ate along the promenade and watched the sunset. We had a beautiful view of the Brooklyn Bridge and the skyline; we couldn’t have asked for a better evening.

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Brooklyn Bridge

As we walked along the promenade, Jennifer’s GPS decided to take us the not-so-scenic route back to the subway. Let’s just say we were glad to be together in a group. We walked almost 2 miles before finding the subway back to Manhattan.

The day had truly wiped us out and we were exhausted once we arrived home.

Saturday morning started with a bang as Whitney and Jennifer explored Central Park (and crashed a wedding! Kinda…) Beautiful scenery and semi-fresh air was a relief from the hustle and bustle of city life.

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Central Park

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The Never-ending Path

The big event of the day was heading to Yankee Stadium to see the Yankees take on the Tampa Bay Rays. We low-key cheered for the Rays, but they unfortunately did not win. The weather was questionable in the beginning and we were super thrilled that our seats had cover. By the end of the game, the sun was shining and the temperature had risen to a comfortable level. We can now both cross of Yankee Stadium from our bucket list!

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Yankee Stadium!

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#throwwhatyouknow

The forth of July wouldn’t have been the same without fireworks! Macy’s fireworks are a NYC bucket list item, and what’s better than watching them from a rooftop in Brooklyn Heights?! Logan was very kind to let Whitney, Preeti and Jennifer crash his party with Tyler and join them in Brooklyn. The view was fantastic! Although I must say Red, Hot & Boom’s fireworks are better, it was an experience I will never forget!

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Macy’s Fireworks

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Macy’s Fireworks

Hillsong NYC was the destination Sunday morning. The sermon was brought to us from Sydney, Australia where Judah Smith was giving a sermon. I heard Judah Smith speak before at Passion 2013; and this sermon was nothing less of spectacular like the last one I heard. If you have about half an hour I found it on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e400W3ialNs

After the service, Logan, Whitney and Jennifer headed to the Soup Nazi for lunch. The lobster bisque was on point! We walked around Times Square for a bit before meeting up with Preeti at Carlo’s Bakery (can you tell we like going there?!).

Per Whitney’s request, we rode the subway all the way to 86th street. Whitney realllyyyy loves the subway (she hasn’t seen them at rush hour). Nonetheless, we ended up at the Central Park Reservoir, and again walked. Absolutely beautiful day. New Yorkers were freaking out because it was 90 degrees, but to us Floridians it was a beautiful relief.

We rode the subway back, collected Whitney’s belongings and took her to Penn Station so she could catch the NJ Transit back to the airport.

It was a crazy packed weekend, but a well enjoyed weekend. We saw pretty much everything there is to see in a weekend. It was great to see a friend from back home because Preeti and Jennifer are getting a tad bit homesick. It’s hard being so far away for such a long time. Don’t get us wrong, we are loving NYC but not being able to see our friends and family at the drop of a hat is hard. We are over halfway through and are looking forward to exploring in the time we have left before we go back to our family and friends.

We are looking forward to Jennifer’s friend Bailey visiting this weekend and the adventure we will have with her!

Until next time,
Jennifer & Preeti

Everything and Then Some

Hey guys! Jennifer here! This weekend Preeti went to Princeton to visit family and I stayed back and spent the weekend with Aimee, another intern at JDRF.

I don’t know how we survived this weekend. In fact, I don’t know how our legs survived this weekend. We calculated that on Saturday we probably walked about 6 or 7 miles. Crazy right?! Well here’s the story…

Friday we made an impromptu decision to go to the Frick Collection. They were having a free event, so why not?! The art was absolutely incredible and the size of the house was in – stunning. It was most definitely worth the trip out.

Saturday was a very early morning. I reluctantly agreed to meet Aimee at 8 am near Chelsea Market for a popup museum. Little did I know, that because Chelsea Market is West of where I live, there was no subway that would take me over there, which lead to walking a mile and a half. We sat in line for awhile, but we made a bucket list of everything we want to see before leaving NYC, most of which we can do after work! (Stay tuned for updates!) We were one of the first one’s in to the Hulu-sponsored pop up museum for Seinfeld. The museum featured a replica of the Seinfeld apartment as well as props used in the show and other interactive displays.

After the Seinfeld museum we decided to walk the High Line. The part we walked was approximately 1 1/4 mile. It was a beautiful day for the walk and we saw incredible art work and views of the city. The High Line is such an interesting park – especially in the day light. Last weekend I was able to go, but in the evening and it was hard to see much of anything. In the day light the uniqueness of the park is more prevalent.

When we finished walking the high line we decided to walk down to Times Square (about a mile away) to go to Carlo’s Bake Shop – yes, THE Cake Boss’ bakery. We both had our very first cannoli. Good heavens it was good.

We caught a subway from there to SoHo for our next mission – the original cronut. Dominique Ansel’s Bakery is the original creator of this combination of a croissant and a donut. Unfortunately, by the time we got there they had sold out. (Later we found out they sell out around 10 am and the line goes down the street) This didn’t stop our adventure! We got a light snack, including a Blueberry Lime macaroon which was incredibly delicious. We sat in the cafe for awhile until it was time for our scheduled walking tour.

By this point, it had started to rain, and it wasn’t too bad, at least that’s what we thought at first. We had scheduled a walking tour of SoHo, Little Italy and Chinatown. The tour started in SoHo showing us tourists all the famous shops, homes of famous people, movie locations and the history of how SoHo came out from being a rough area to a very sophisticated and well-to-do area. We proceeded to see Little Italy and Chinatown, but at this point its downright pouring. Neither of us were about to pull our cameras out to take pictures while the heavens were opening up. Sadly, we don’t have many pictures but we plan on going back out and seeing the areas sans rain. We concluded our evening with chicken fried rice in Chinatown.

That was just Saturday. Let’s say all those sweets we ate, we burned those calories very quickly.

Sunday Logan and I attended Hillsong’s early (10 am) service at the Best Buy Theater in Times Square. Once again, the sermon was on fire. How a pastor can use the phrase “You do you, boo boo” and still have the sermon make sense and be relevant, is beyond me. The worship blows me away every week and I can’t wait to take Whitney next weekend!

After the service, Logan and I grabbed lunch and, you know since we were already there, went to Carlo’s Bake Shop. No shame.

Aimee and I met up again and since the heavens still hadn’t finished, we decided it was a museum day. The Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) has a pay-as-you-wish system. This is nice because we can afford to come back over and over again, and take our time! So we attempted to tackle the first floor. We got through 95% of Egypt and the “China Through the Looking Glass’ exhibit before calling it a night, 3 hours later. We will have to go back later to see the rest of Egypt and the American wing – and that’s just the first floor!

It was a weekend filled with walking but we are amazed at how much we were able to see – and still manage to get full nights worth of sleep! Next weekend is a holiday weekend so we get off work early Thursday and completely off on Friday! One of my friends, Whitney, is coming and I am unbelievably excited to have a dose of sorority sister/Orlando/friendship. It’s crazy to believe that I’ve been in this city for 37 days already. I miss my friends from back home and this weekend is going to be great. I don’t want to give any details away – you’ll have to read about them next week. 🙂

Until then,

Jennifer

PS. If you want to stay updated on what I’m working on at my internship check this out – www.insulinpoweredintern.wordpress.com 

50% Chance of Rain, 100% Chance of Adventure

Wow… was the weekend really 4 days ago?! Time, it seriously flies.

This past weekend we set out to explore Governor’s Island… the one issue, it was supposed to rain. And it did. Did that stop adventure?? No way! We took a few wrong turns but eventually found the Governor’s Island Ferry and were on our way for a very misty and wet day. Despite the lingering clouds, the mist only lasted momentarily and we were able to explore all that the island has to offer.

First stop – Hammock Grove. Yep, sounds exactly like what it is – a grove of hammocks, a large area with just hammocks, hammock after hammock after hammock, I think you get the point. Man, we would definitely take that $2 ferry back to just relax on the hammocks. You just sit there staring up at the sky and its amazingly, perfectly and wonderfully QUIET. No people shouting to be heard over the roar of traffic, no tour guides shouting over the hustle and bustle of people to be heard, no car horns, no subway screeches – absolutely nothing. But yet, if you look at a map Governors Island is not far from Manhattan. It’s a weird feeling – being so close, yet so far away.


Around 1:30 we had a scheduled (FREE!) tour of Fort William. Side bar – the beauty of this island is that it’s a national park and historical landmark, so everything to do is free. Which in New York is a rarity. Okay, back to the story of Fort William. This fort was original build to withstand attacks, but was never used due to a fort that was built further from the city. The architecture at the time was seen as  absurd because of its round shape and use of arches to support walls. Since the fort was never in use for its original purpose, it was turned into a Prisoners of War compound.


 After touring the fort we decided to do something crazy – rent a sury bike. It was so much fun biking around the island and enjoying the views. I think we biked around the island atleast 3 times… Don’t even get me started on that hill we tried to bike up. Let’s just say it didn’t really work. We were quite sore after the hour but it was worth it.


[Don’t bike and video tape kids…]

When you’re trying to take a picture but the wind has other plans.

We walked around Fort Jay before making our way back to the ferry. We made it to the ferry just before the sky opened up and down poured once again.

Once back in the city we found a sushi place for dinner and called it a night.

It was a day filled of adventure and a day that will be remembered.

– Jennifer & Preeti

2 Weekends + 1 Post

Well, it’s safe to say that Preeti and I have been crazy busy the past week – so busy we forgot to post last weekend! So, brace yourself for this 2 weekend report in just one post!

Last weekend, Preeti and I slept in. When I say slept in.. I mean ’til noon. Between working, working, more working, even more working, this city has us wiped out! But the city never sleeps so there was plenty of time to get some NYC site seeing in. We started with heading up to the box office to get cheap broadway show tickets. We ended up seeing “Something Rotten” which after the show we gave a solid 5 tomatoes out of 5. HILARIOUS. Seriously, if you are in NYC go see it. Set in the Renaissance, a struggling play writer was competing against Shakespeare and his plays. Long story short he makes the world’s first musical… but it wasn’t that easy to make. Both of us aren’t incredibly into plays and musicals, but this was definitely worth it! We finished off the evening with Shake Shack. For Jennifer, this was her first experience and very much enjoyed.

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First Broadway Play!

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Shake Shack!

Sunday morning was, yet again, unseen until almost noon. Once we got breakfast, uh Lunch I mean, Preeti was off to work. Jennifer explored the esplanade down by her Grammy’s former apartment. It was a beautiful, fairly cool, day for a nice walk. The esplanade is by the Hudson River and is one of the few places in the city where fresh air can be found.

Later that evening, Jennifer attended Hillsong NYC yet again. This time, she went to the late service (7:30 PM) and the sermon was on fire! Carl Lentz delivered the word it was phenomenal. If I ever find it on YouTube I will be sure to share it!

It's still unreal to think that I attend church in Times Square!

It’s still unreal to think that I attend church in Times Square!

Well that pretty much sums up that weekend! It seems like we didn’t explore a lot, which to be honest we didn’t. But it was the perfect low-key weekend we needed after what seemed like the longest week of work.

This past Tuesday, the MarCom (Marketing & Communications) team went to a Mets baseball game. Although the game was a no-hitter, and the Mets lost terribly (not like Jennifer was rooting for a particular team), it was a great way to end the work day and experience yet another NYC bucket list attraction.

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Brittany, Jennifer and Erika

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Finally, we have arrived to this weekend! Both Preeti and Jennifer left the hustle-and-bustle of the city to spend time with our families (you know, we did leave them for 12 weeks, so they did want to see us…)

Jennifer spent time in Lancaster, PA with two celebrations of life. The first one on Saturday was to celebrate her cousin Ronni Ann’s high school graduation. The afternoon was spent eating lots of cake and sitting outside enjoying the nice country air. Sunday, around 200 people gathered to celebrate the life of Ray Kauffman, our dearly beloved father, husband, grandfather, and friend of so many. He passed away in March of this year and this memorial was to bring memories and closure to his passing. The grandkids, daughters, sons-in-law, wife and a few dear friends joined in releasing butterfly’s in honor of his life. We miss him dearly but one day we will see him again!

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The poem read for the butterfly release

It was a bittersweet weekend for Jennifer, but it was fantastic to be able to see family, including her parents and brothers.

After working almost 80 hours the past week (which for a sloth like Preeti is unprecedented and probably will be unsurpassed), she visited her aunt and uncle in good old New Jersey – home of your boss who  commutes five days a week. It was peaceful, relaxed, light, green, clean (She was obviously not in Jersey City) – pretty much everything a non-New Yorker would associate with the Garden State.  Preeti spent time with her little cousins, swimming, eating, singing karaoke (don’t ask). She didn’t want to leave but unfortunately, the cyclical 80-hour workweek anxiously awaited her arrival like the needy spouse it was. Onto the next week which you will hear about soon! 

Thanks for reading this tremendously long post – we promise to be better at posting more frequently! 🙂

– Jennifer & Preeti

A Breathtaking Start

After a long week of work for Jennifer and visiting family for Preeti, we took on the role of tourists for the weekend. Our friends from back home, Amanda and Debora, were visiting New York so we spent much of our weekend in their company. Friday night was spent catching up and chatting on the rooftop of their hotel. The nighttime view of the city was absolutely incredible and provided a perfect backdrop for our crazy pictures.

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The city is ours for the summer!

Saturday was a whirlwind. We scrambled up atop the Rock at 9 AM. This was undoubtedly too early for us and coffee was required to get through the endless walking and sightseeing but the view at the top was worth every minute of lost sleep. Breathtaking views of Central Park, Midtown and Downtown. Let the pictures try to do the views justice….

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Central Park Side

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Meet our new friend – Mr. Empire.

The fun didn’t stop at the Rock. We went to the Met to see the incredible “China: Through the Looking Glass” exhibit. One word: stunning. The dress designs were absolutely gorgeous, curated by fashion idol, Anna Wintour. If you are in the NYC area, do yourself a favor and check it out. Of course, Debora and Jennifer had to have the ‘Blair and Serena’ moment and sit on the Met steps. For those of you who don’t get the reference, the Met steps are in every iconic “lunch scene” from the CW show Gossip Girl. But upon exploring the area, it made no sense that they would go all the way to the Met for lunch… just sayin’.

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gossipgirl

After the Met, we explored Central Park – from the Alice in Wonderland sculpture, to the bridge in Enchanted, to the Bethesda Fountain (another Gossip Girl location!), and lastly the Strawberry fields. Side note – clearly the creators of the so-called “Strawberry Fields” have never been to Plant City, FL to see an actual strawberry field. Regardless, the tribute to John Lennon made up for the lack of fields. (Don’t worry, we get the Strawberry Fields reference but if you’re reading NYC tourism department [highly unlikely], throw in some strawberries and make a festival out of this place.)

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Central Park

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Gossip Girl – Where Chuck & Blair got married

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Memorial to John Lennon

After taking a brief break from walking (and walking, and more walking), Amanda, Debora and Jennifer took a sunset dinner trip to Brooklyn Heights. Unfortunately, construction got in the way of viewing the Brooklyn bridge entirely, but the sunset along the NYC skyline was incredible. The weather could not have been more perfect. Crossing off bucket list item after item, we concluded our evening with a slice of famous NY pizza.

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Different Perspective – Brooklyn view of NYC

Sunday morning did not slow Jennifer and Debora down as they attended Hillsong Church. The church meets at the Best Buy Theater in New York, and it was a fantastic service. The worship was on point and the sermon hit home. This will most likely be Jennifer’s church home for the next 3 months.

It was sad to say goodbye to both of our friends, but it was a joy to have spent our first weekend in the city with these girls. We have been close friends for so long and our adventures together are only just beginning.

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This week Preeti starts her internship and Jennifer continues working on a special project for the JDRF.

Just two small(ish) town girls learning how to find their way in this big city – but we are loving every single minute. And coming home exhausted. But that’s New York, right?

Thanks for reading!

Jennifer & Preeti