Friday, December 28, 2012

Christmas In The City

Spending Christmas in NYC was not something we had planned. Brandon had earned a 3 night stay at the Hyatt hotel that had to be used by the end of the year. So, instead of letting it go to waste, we booked a hotel in New York during Christmas (the only time we could make it work).
I'll be honest, I wasn't completely on board with this idea. Taking the boys adds a whole new element of "fun" and I knew the weather would be chilly. But the more we talked about it, the more excited I became.
Brandon's parents flew up with the boys, making the travels of our little family more enjoyable, and the 2 of us drove. When we got to the city we found a free parking spot (crazy I know!), bundled up, and got ready for the cold. We walked in and out of shops in time square as the boys gazed at all the chaotic hustle and bustle around them.

A few hours later, Brandon and I handed off the boys to Brandon's parents and their friends we had met up with, and we dashed off for birthday adventures. The day we left, the 23rd, was my birthday, so Brandon had planned a special evening for me. We ate heavenly food, and I mean that in a literal sense. The prime rib sandwich at Hillstone WILL be served in heaven. After our meal we walked to the Hirschfeld theatre and saw the play Elf. It was cute and the perfect thing to see 2 days before Christmas.
Christmas eve started out slow and relaxed. We all laid around while the boys napped. When they woke, we heading into the city. 

A family shot before leaving Jersey City.
G-diddy, aunt Breezy, and Nana
Taking pictures on the metro. Yes, I'm a proud tourist.
 A beautiful church amongst tall, gray buildings 
Christian and Connor sporting their knit hats made by Grandma (thank you! we love, love them!).
A lot of walking is always required when going to the city. We walked to Bryant park which was filled with small shops for the holidays.
 Next we walked to Two Little Red Hens. They sell all sorts of delicacies that are perfectly fattening and wonderful.
 Rockafeller center was our next destination. We had planned on ice skating but after seeing the line and the prices, we decided watching others enjoy themselves, and taking a few pictures would suit us just fine.
We ended the afternoon with Lombardi's pizza.

Aunt Breezy, the boys, and I
 Before heading back into our hotel we decided to bare the cold a little longer and take some pictures of the city lights. What a gorgeous view. As the cold numbed my fingers and nose, I couldn't help but think of my many blessings and the simplicity of the Saviors birth. I love the city for it's bright lights, business, chaos, and diversity. With that said, I'm grateful for the humble, quite, and peaceful birth of sweet baby Jesus. What a complete contrast it was from the city. I pictured myself there at the side of Mary with her baby wrapped in cloth and praised my Savior for his example, acceptance, love, and life.
I am grateful.
After getting back to our room the boys opened their Christmas jams, played with wrapping paper, and were shortly sound asleep.
Then we watched It's A Wonderful Life, a Christmas tradition of ours. I love how it puts things in perspective.
After opening our gifts on Christmas morning, we put the boys down for their nap (with a baby monitor of course), and went to breakfast.
Christmas day was quiet and relaxing. We took turns seeing Les Miserables, something Brandon and I have been dying to see (we are huge fans of the musical).
Right before bed the boys snuck into the Jiff. Apparently they needed a bedtime snack or maybe they just wanted to make a mess so they could stay up longer while I cleaned them up. Whichever, it was darling, and I love that Connor is trying to drink the peanut butter.  
This Christmas was different than normal, but I loved it. We were busy so I didn't think as much about the missing family members. The boys were perfect as we dashed around the city, and the weather wasn't as cold as I'd feared. Our Christmas was merry and bright. I hope yours was, too. :)