Tag Archives: new york

Let’s Connect!!

‘Tis the season…. And it has been hectic… I have been pretty social on instagram, see below for a couple of my most recent shots (which has a LOT of New York reminiscing going on!!) Follow me and keep in touch!! I love it!!

So here are a couple of things that we have been SUPER busy with – getting our basement bathroom tiled and finished (hoping to paint and install new toilet this weekend!). We need a useable bathroom before the rents arrive here next week!!

So, we have family over for Christmas!! SUPER excited!! Our temperatures have been frigid (understatement of the YEAR!), but they can thank their lucky stars that it seems to be warming up for their arrival… I’m sorry, what I meant to say was that it will be warming up from Friday, just in time for their arrival next week…!! Today is freakin freezing!!

We are going to take them to the mountains – so definitely tune in on instagram for some pretty photos!! My AMAZING hubby brought me a Sony Alpha A6300 mirrorless camera for my birthday!! I took it on our trip to NY and it definitely made travel “lighter”!! I also upgraded my phone (hellooooo Samsung Galaxy S7!!). This is important because now I can wirelessly send photos from my camera to my phone… en voila!! The result is some pretty amazing instagram photos!!

As it is Christmas season with tons of specials, I took good use of this opportunity to catch up on some albums (because I LOVE seeing my photos come to life!!). Although I haven’t shared much of this with you, I have enjoyed the last few trips by paging through my GORGEOUS albums!!! (Intervention has been performed by hubby… apparently enough is enough now!!) 😉

I know there are a few things that I wanted to get done before the rents arrive… but oh well!! We’ll just not mention that and all should be good!!

Work has also been kind-of nuts!! It’s that ever popular end-of-year crunch!! (I am writing this while we are in a lull waiting for some last-minute proposal reviews to come through!!…. EEEeeek!!) Crunch time…. Only a couple more days to go!! Have I mentioned that I am excited?? 😀

The dogs are doing well as well!! I’m pretty sure they just sleep throughout the day… and then take out their energy on us when it is time to wind down…. but we love them!! Hhhhmmmm…. I wish I was with them right now…. I could use their fluffy cuddles and snores!!

Oh well!! Follow along on instagram!! I’m hoping to share some basement upgrades with you soon… but it won’t be untill after the new year!! In which case Merry Christmas to all you people!! Stay warm, stay safe!! And have a great time!! 😀 <3

Prospect Park Smorgasburg

The Smorgasburg located in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, reminded us of the good old Hazel Food Market in South Africa. The Hazel Food Market was literally around the corner from our house, and a favourite stop for us every Saturday!!

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Here in Edmonton the closest thing to these markets would be farmers markets. To tell you the least, although we do have farmers markets, they are a far cry from the from the fantastic food markets we had in South Africa, and this delightful market called Smorgasburg!

smorgasburg hooplahappiness.com

Yum! 😀

There were SO much to choose from!!! Smorgasburg, you were a delight!! In the end I drank coconut juice (directly from the coconut!!)… Hubby ate the smoked beef brisket sandwich!! And for dessert we settled on some delectable sugar coated and roasted coconut doughnuts and lattes!! Hhhhmmm… I am realizing now that I might be into coconut!! – Just a teeny-tiny bit! 😀

We even got to meet up with a German friend who I met in England in 2005, and who now lives in New York – isn’t that just really awesome!?!

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The variety was crazy! I think we must’ve walked through the market four times before we ‘kind-of’ decided what we wanted!! So many delicious options!! …. If we lived near a food market like this, we’d once again have found our regular hangout spot for a weekend morning! For now though… I’ll have to look at these photos and dream about the many yummy options we missed out on!!

smorgasburg hooplahappiness.com

Grand Central Station – NYC

Grand Central Station is undoubtedly one of the busiest and most beautiful stations in the world. Of course a visit to New York City won’t be complete without a stop at Grand Central. The activity in this place is SUPER CRAZY!!! You really just want to stand in the corner and admire the fact that everyone in the station is in a rush to reach their end destination.grand central station - NYC grand central station - NYC

We walked around for a while admiring the roof, the architecture of the building and savouring the fact that we were indeed standing in the iconic Grand Central Station. We found a spot that allowed for a moment of standing still and grabbing a couple of shots. I also found this great article about the clocks at this station – which is always wrong!!! But for a good reason!! The clock pictured below is estimated to be worth more that $10 million USD – this is likely because of the four faces of the clock is made of opal.grand central station - NYC grand central station - NYC

Can you spot me in the photo above?? I just love this photo!!grand central station - NYC grand central station - NYC grand central station - NYC

Best Time to Visit the Charging Bull

When me and hubby were compiling the list of places we wanted to visit and things we wanted to do while in New York City, naturally the Charging Bull from Wall Street came up. Granted, this wasn’t top of the list, but when else are you going to get the opportunity to take a picture with the huge bronze bull that has a pretty interesting story behind it and appears in movies??

So, one afternoon while we were in the financial district, we swung by that area… This is what we saw…

Source: www.colinsnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/188-04.jpg

Source: www.colinsnotes.com/2016/01/21/the-bali-horror-show-forests-of-snakes-and-eyeballs-for-breakfast-and-terrorism/

Source: www.travelcities.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/11/b002.jpg

Source: www.travelcities.net/2015/11/u-s-a-and-canada-east-coast-travel-part-vinew-york/

Now, we realized that New York is SUPER busy!! But Oh.My.Goodness…….. What value will this type of photo be to me? A bunch (understatement of the CENTURY!) of people and the butt of a ‘supposed’ bronze charging bull statue. I say ‘supposed’, because what is visible is only the back of the huge statue.

So, we skipped this spot… for now!! In all fairness, it was Saturday!! So one expects tourists to be all over the place!! But, when we returned to this spot sometime in the afternoon of Monday, there was no improvement. I think my exact words to hubby was ‘Well it seems we’ll not be taking home a photo of the famous Charging Bull’!!!

I come bearing good news, mainly for us, but also for the many many people that plan to visit New York City in the future… We got our photo!! 😀 So, you might ask, when is the best time to get a photo of the Charging Bull?

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Here’s our story. Very early on the Tuesday morning (05h15 to be exact), I got up and jumped through the shower – bursting with anticipation that today might be the day!! My hubby followed queue, and we were on our way by 06h15 – joining the working force of NYC! We arrived at the Charging Bull location around 07h00. I had made peace with the fact that there probably is NO GOOD TIME to get a good view of this statue, but my-oh-my!!

When we emerged out of that subway and saw the Charging Bull wide open, I wanted to break out in a sprint even though there were no people around!! It probably ended up being one of the highlights of our trip (for both me and hubster!)!!

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I guess my advice is this – beat the tourists!! While everyone is still sleeping, get up and go!! You wont be disappointed!! Or (and we did not test this one), wait for the tourists to go home after a busy day. My guess is that you will be lucky then as well!! The only people around us was the suits on their way to work… Such a happy day!!
charging bull hooplahappiness.com

charging bull hooplahappiness.com

Views from the Top of the Rock

Everybody loves a great view, and the view from the Rockefeller Centre does not disappoint!! Also known as the ‘Top of the Rock Observation Deck’. We really had two choices: Go up the Empire State Building (aaaah Sleepless in Seattle 😉 ) or go to the Top of the Rock…

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Hmmmmm…. a view from the Empire State or a view of the Empire State Building?? Although I’m sure that the view from the Empire State building is super pretty, it was really this view that I was after…

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Yes, yes, we chose Top of the Rock!! I am not going to lie, (… don’t judge me…) but I wanted to push a couple of people off that building!! At $32 per person (no cheap attraction!), everyone should get to have the opportunity to spend a couple of minutes enjoying the view from the front of the queue. I really do not understand how they allow tripods up there!?! A lot of people got to the front and then set up their whole tripod setup and just stood there, taking a gazillion photos.

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(Rant NOT over!)… And then you get the other third of the spectrum, the extremely rude people, who would just PUSH you out of the way. I am sorry, but just wait a couple of seconds and you’ll get your chance!! Are we the only people who feel this way?? Everyone pays a lot of money to get up there. People should just relax and enjoy the views – you are not more entitled than anyone else. Be courteous and make way after you’ve enjoyed your turn!! I guess this is something that will just get worse with time… tourists spoil tourist spots (says I while typing this rant!!)!

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(Rant over!) Oh my goodness!! The views are AMAZING!!! It was a dream come true to see the city from so high up!! That view of the South tip of Manhattan with The Empire State gracing the skyline!! It was gorgeous!! And to the North you can see for miles… A bird’s eye view of Central Park make you realize just how big this park really is!! In an ideal world we would have watched the sun set from way up there… Alas, after about an hour of crazy people we decided to head down. We had soaked up every angle of that view!! Even with all the idiot people, I think that this was one of the highlights of our trip!!

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