Cory and I live right outside of the City in Jersey City. With the proximity to the City there are lots of foodie-friendly restaurants (many of which are BYOB!). Below is a list of some of our favorites.
Antique Bar & Bakery
This used to be a bakery with the best bread! But with rent raising, they had to move. They left the coal burning oven behind and taught the new owners how to use it. The restaurant now offers food in a hip seventies-inspired spot in Hoboken. It's small and always busy so make a reservation or plan to wait. The food is fresh and delicious and the cocktails are inventive. It's such a cute vibe and you can go casual in jeans or dressed up a little. It's one of our favorite nights out for a special occasion. Some of our favorite items include: lasagna edges pasta, the dirty rib eye and the bread pudding! The place is a bakery by day - you have to get the bread pudding!
The Cuban, also in Hoboken, serves authentic Cuban food in a cute restaurant on the main strip in Hoboken (Washington Street). The cocktails are delicious but strong! The first time we went I didn't realize and by the time we left dinner was roaming Hoboken pretty tipsy. Get the paella. You won't regret it. And the empanadas to start.
Ok, the ramen isn't to die for but it's convenient and it's solid ramen right on Grove Street in Jersey City. The bar is open and serves food until midnight or later every night. We love to go and grab a drink around the corner at The Archer while we wait for a table. Then we get the steamed buns and 2 bowls of ramen. You will have leftovers but it's even better the next day. And it's a cool vibe!
Probably my favorite spot for brunch in Hoboken. The churrasco steak will cure even the nastiest hangover and is to die for on any occasion. So is the guava-stuffed french toast - you can ask Guy Fieri. He agrees. Go to the uptown location, it's cuter and has a full bar!
The secret's out. Some of the best pizza in New Jersey, maybe even in NYC depending who you ask. Inventive toppings. Delicious crust & great cocktails! Go but plan to wait. Plenty of places nearby to grab a drink while you wait.
It's recently cooled down here in NYC the past few days hanging around 50 degrees throughout the day. Below is a sweater I got mid-winter that's super fun for cool spring/summer days with it's bright color! Unfortunately, this exact sweater is sold out but I've rounded up a few of my other favorite spring/summer sweaters below.
Sometimes I get really excited to share photos with you guys and this is definitely one of those sets! Sometimes I'm really feeling shooting and other times I'm not. Well I was really feeling it for this shoot on one of my last days in NYC.
As you all know by now, Cory and I recently made the decision to leave our home in NYC to move to South Florida for a job opportunity. Full story here. As I talked about, it was a very hard decision for us to make as we were comfortable and happy in our NYC lives. But dreams over fears people. When I got this job offer, we knew we'd have to take it and I think that's part of why it was a hard decision - we knew accepting it meant we'd have to leave our home in NYC. And let's be honest, we were scared. So, dreams over fears...
Moving to a different state, to a new job, whatever your new is is scary. Novelty/the unknown is scary. But dreams over fears. You have to put your long-term goals over your short-term fears. How do you do this?
I focus on the long-term and when I get unsettled or that fear creeps in I remember why I want that long term thing. So for example, with this move, I was sad to leave friends, a great job where I was very comfortable, my husband for a few months, our apartment, my city, but when I got sad I would just remind myself of all the reasons I was excited/happy for the new - the beach, the ocean, career advancement, a new city to explore, being close to family, starting a new chapter.
Fear is natural. You can't let it keep you from accomplishing your dreams. Focus on why you want the scary thing and take the plunge! Start that blog you've been thinking about, start that business you aren't sure will survive, accept that big new job, go on that crazy trip, quit the job you hate, whatever it is - don't let fear hold you back. What's the worst that could happen?
Summer is right around the corner! 42 days and the sunny warmer weather is already creeping in. As a native Floridian, summer is my favorite time of year! Pool days, BBQs, bonfires, beach weekends - everyone is just lighter.
Once we decided we were moving to Florida, I had 3 weeks left in NYC and so much I wanted to do! When you live somewhere you always feel like yeah but I could do that later and then you run out of time. I quickly snapped into gear and put together a NYC bucketlist for things I wanted to do before I was no longer a resident. Below, I've rounded up what I think are the NYC must-do's from downtown to uptown.
1 - Highline: The Highline is an above ground park along the Hudson River. Grab a friend and wander. I prefer to start at Chelsea Market with a taco from Los Tacos No 1 and walk uptown.
2 - Row boats in Central Park: We were skeptical, thought we'd be bored quickly but we weren't. It was beautiful. It's cash only though so plan accordingly.
3 - Shakespeare in the Park: A community performance of Shakespeare held in the ampitheatre in Central Park on Saturday nights in the summer. Here for how to get tickets. You can bring in food and drinks. We packed cheese and crackers and a s'well bottle of margaritas. I suggest you do the same. Though they do have available for purchase at the theatre as well.
4 - A drink at The Public Hotel rooftop. It's expensive and not worth more than 1 drink but the view is the best view I've ever seen of NYC. We're talking unobstructed 360degree views.
5 - Dim Sum in Chinatown. TBH I don't have a fave but it's a fun thing to do. Get a foot massage while you wait and the best cocktail you'll ever have from Apotheke.
6 - MOMA: Constantly changing exhibits with some great classics - Van Gogh, Monet, etc. Best in the winter or when it's free on Friday nights.
7 - Yankee Game: touristy but do it. You can find tickets pretty cheap.
8 - Eat. My two staple must do restaurants when anyone asks for a suggestion are: L'Artusi, the best Italian you'll ever have. Trust me. and Uncle Boon's, it's Thai but when you think of Thai food you think of Pad Thai and overly-sweet drunken noodles. Not here. Best meal of 2018 and reasonable as far as NYC goes.
As you all know by now, I'm no longer an NYC-resident. So what a perfect time to finally write a dining guide to NYC. Stay tuned for my NYC bucket list coming in the next few weeks. There are 24,000 restaurants in NYC. That doesn't even make sense to me that's such a big number. I used to get so overwhelmed by the choices and panic and then never be able to actually pick a place to go - Cory refers to this as "falling down the Yelp hole." So, to save you the same stress in case you're a psycho like me. Below, are some of my absolute favorite NYC restaurants/bars.
When you think Thai food you think Pad Thai and overly-sweet drunken noodles. Think again. Uncle Boon's is authentic and better than anything else you've ever had. They don't take reservations so put your name in and grab a drink around the block. Best part is it's reasonably priced.
What to get: My fave items are the green curry (Khao Soi Kaa Kai) and the raw scallops (Plaa hoi shenn) and you have to try the ice cream dessert.
So today... I am leaving NYC and moving to South Florida. Cory and I are originally from South Florida and I recently received a job offer that we felt like we couldn't refuse so back to Florida we go! When we moved up to New York, we'd always planned to return to Florida one day, knowing we'd want to be closer to our families. And a little over 4 years later, that day has come.
We are so excited to be closer to family and start building roots in a place where we plan to stay long term. I accepted a position at another Advertising Agency and look forward to getting to know my new team there. We're of course sad to leave New York and see that time in our lives come to an end - we've built great careers and friendships here and have loved our time here but felt it was time to return back where it's warmer. It was a very difficult decision to make as we are giving up a part of our lives that we've grown to really love but know that we're exchanging it for another part of our lives that we're excited to build. Plus we'll always have New York.
Sadly though Cory is not coming with me yet. We are still under lease in New York and he is already scheduled to take his Professional Engineer exam there in late-October so he is going to stay through the end of October and then move down to join Oliver & I. So until then, I will be staying at my in-laws and living life a little less settled than I might like. But we grow most when times are tough they say. Luckily however I was able to arrange with my new company that I can work remotely every other Friday so I can go back and forth between NYC frequently while Cory is still there. So lots of long weekends in NYC for a few more months but my primary location will become South Florida.
We're excited and sad and all the emotions that come with a decision like this. We're looking forward to see what South Florida has in store for us. PS - For any Florida readers out there, we haven't lived there in almost 4 years. I'd love your recommendations for things to do and any great bars and restaurants to check out.
I'm obsessed with crop tops for summer. I wish almost daily that I could wear them to work and struggle to find a top that goes with these pants/shorts/skirt as well as a crop top. So I'm sharing my obsession. I've rounded up some of my favorites below and sharing how I've styled some of my favorite crop tops.
I love a crop top with just about anything. it adds a light feel to flowy pants, is perfect for the beach or pool with jean shorts or dressed up with a hat and a skirt for date night or drinks with the girls. Crop tops add a fun look to everything and are perfect for summer. Which is why I can't get enough! Plus with high waisted anything they can be super flattering. Now if only we could figure out how to pull them off in the office..
Cory and I have lived in Jersey City for 2 years now and we love it. It's a nice escape from NYC while still being 1 quick subway stop away. Jersey City is such a cute city with so many fun things to do. We love going on walks after work in the summer and frequently run into live music events with one of our favorites being Groove on Grove on Wednesday nights at the Grove Street Path station. When we went out to take these pictures, we ran into some live music in a park near our apartment.
I'm obsessed with this romper. It runs a little big so you could size down but I like the oversized fit of it at my true size. Especially when paired with a jean jacket. I've worn it on the plane, to work and running around on the weekends. It's cute enough for any and all occasions & super lightweight for those especially hot days. Plus this fabric doesn't need to be steamed, it's supposed to be light and a little wrinkled.
If you've been following me for any amount of time, you know how much I love summer. Can you believe it's already the middle of July and we're halfway through this sunny time of year!? Here's how I'm making the most of summer.
one - outdoor concerts
Living in the NYC area, there's lots of live music throughout the summer. Jersey City has bands perform every Wednesday night outside on the Grove Street path station. Cory, Oliver and I have made it a recent habit to head down on Wednesdays to sit outside with a glass of wine and listen to whoever is playing this week. It's become one of my favorite nights of the week.
two - happy hour. outside.
Being outside is my favorite thing about the summer. Cocktails outside, on a roof or near the river is another one of my favorite ways to spend summer evenings with friends. Sunday nights Cory and I like to walk to a nearby bar in Jersey City called Lutze. TBH their drinks aren't the greatest but the venue is so cool - it's all outside and on the Hudson River. Another great spot we recently went for my sister's birthday is the roof at the Public Hotel in the LES. It's expensive but worth going for the view, get 1 drink, check it out and head somewhere more reasonable.
three - BBQ with friends
We're lucky to live in a building in Jersey City that has a large roof area with room to entertain and lots of space to grill. Have your friends over to hang outside, throw something on the grill & don't forget the s'mores!
four - summer reading
I love sitting at the pool or beach and flying through a good book. In the summer, I probably read nearly 1 book per week. I'll be doing a post soon on some of my favorites so far.
five - relax in the sun
Beach day. Pool day. Grab your book, some rosé and don't forget the sunscreen and relax in the sun.
six - summer vacations.
Summer is the perfect time for weekend road trips to the beach or week-long trips to a bucket list destination. We always go to Cory's family's Lake House outside of Knoxville, TN every year. It's one of our favorite trips because the whole family goes - aunts, uncles, cousins, there's usually 15 of us - floating in the lake by day and cooking, sitting by the fire at night.
How are you spending the rest of your summer? Let me know in the comments!