New York City -Spring Break 2011

Spring Break 2011 was extra special for us this year, primarily because Dale had been working super super fulltime between school and work and he had about 5 days completely OFF. We planned a trip to NYC -my (Hannah) first time EVER (The greyhound station at 5am one morning does not count) and all we knew was that we wanted to see 2 Broadway shows and we had less than 38 hours to do so. So we traveled to DC, hung out for a few days with my sister and family and they were able to take a few days off of work to watch Lindy while we were gone. So, bright and early Wednesday morning, Dale and I boarded a MegaBus bound for NYC! We got the front row seats on the top -a VERY nice view. We were able to sleep most of the way and woke up right outside of the Lincoln tunnel. I didn't care how long the bus ride was...I was pretty much elated to have my husband's undivided attention for the next 38 hours. First stop? Empire State Building. I was impressed by the line system they had going on in the building. I kept thinking, "Oh, it is right around the corner." Had there been 500 people ahead of us, I would have been cranky. Luckily, we were in a line of about 50 people, so we made our way through the line efficiently. I would HAVE NOT waited in a line with 500+ people and I'm sure many people do. To give you an idea of how fast we made our way through. We got off our bus, walked to the Empire State Building and came down in the first hour and a half in New York. FAST. Forgot to use the bathroom before we got all the way back to the bottom. Had to find a bathroom! Found a bathroom on our way to Pennsylvania Station. Couldn't miss a restaurant along the way...can you see what it is above? We sent Lindy a picture message and she loved it. We were on a hunt for a restaurant for lunch BATHROOM. Found a pizza joint but not bathroom, skipped it. Found another place, Cafe Metro and took advantage of the facilities. Never realized how much I'd miss a bathroom when I am pregnant and in a city where they are not easy to come by. Ate some pizza and salad and then started walking towards Times Square. Quick stop in Grand Central Station. Between lunch and our first show, we had an hour to spend in Times Square. So, we tried to catch a bus. Now, we are both city folk, we have some street smarts...promise. So, we jump on a bus, pull out our dollar bills and guess what? They don't take dollar bills? We had to have coins or a transit card. !! Ugh. So, we hoofed it to Times Square. Times Square was incredible. Absolutely amazing. I have never had any real desire to spend time there or care to do so...but I could have stood there for hours soaking it all in. Yes, it was pure commercialism but it was almost art to see everything going on. Amazing. The weather was nice, the sun was out, and we were able to just stand there in the middle staring at everything. The popular American Eagle corner. I was proud to work for AE … [Read more...]

Missing Days -an explanation

I have been joking with my mother and sister Liz that my "readers" are probably wondering why I have been so inconsistent in writing the past few days... Sunday evening last week, my sister Liz and family drove through town to stay for a few days while their moving truck drove to their new house -CLOSER to me!! Yes, my sister has moved to the DC area -only a 3 1/2 hour drive instead of a 9 hour drive. Lindy and I were planning on driving to DC with them to help them unpack. Anyhoo. We thought it would take the truck 2 days to get to DC. Monday evening they called and said, be ready tomorrow morning at 8am. So, Lindy and I packed a bag quickly and we all left Pittsburgh on Monday evening and arrived in DC at the new, empty house at midnight. We got our air mattresses out and had an adventurous night filled with excitement about the new place. The next morning, the truck arrived at 10:30 and the 2 workers proceeded to unload the entire truck for the next 9 hours straight. I was tired just watching them. All that to say, I wasn't able to post on Tuesday because of no internet...my mother flew in on Wednesday and that night a TERRIBLE storm came through and we lost all electricity for the next 2 days. Welcome to the neighborhood! So, I have been without electricity and therefore internet for a few days. It actually was nice. I read a 350 page book and had some nice time with family and helped unpack a few of the 200+ boxes. We plan on heading back home on Sunday to spend the afternoon with Dale after he gets off work at 2pm. An exciting week for him!! He starts Grad School on Friday the 20th!!! … [Read more...]

Our Cruise -Day Five

Finally, the last day of our cruise. We didn't realize that we could have sent our luggage to the airport ahead of us so we we headed off the boat with all our luggage at 9:30am to roam the streets of Miami until our 3pm flight. Now, this last day was almost as adventurous as the entire cruise and it only cost about $50. We asked our cab driver if he knew of a place that we could drop our luggage for the day. He recommended a hotel and drove us there. We were approached by a couple of porters and we sheepishly asked if we could store our luggage there while we were hanging out at the beach. He leaned over and whispered, SURE, we just ask for $5 a bag and we'll keep it here for you. I (Hannah) the skeptic looked at him and said, "this is totally legit?" He laughed and said yes. We proceeded to follow him into this BEAUTIFUL hotel and he asked the woman at the desk for a name of someone who had already checked out. I was given that new name and he said, there is a pool on the roof, showers, and beach deck chairs all for you "Miss Olin". Ha!! We went to the beach and gave the lady our "name" and she gave us deck chairs, towels and an umbrella. It was very obvious that everyone was "in" on it because she winked at us. We found out later that her brother lives in Pittsburgh and she has attended our church!! That was actually one of the more relaxing days that we had -I napped on the beach in my comfy chair and fed the seagulls. I think I've mentioned that I like animals right? After our relaxing stay on the beach, we headed into Miami to a locals restaurant Las Olas Cafe -this was NOT your typical tourist place. They only spoke Spanish and I didn't recognize anything on the menu besides rice. It was delicious. We had to get some change so we could tip the porters so we stopped at a little outdoor restaurant that had 30+ flavors of smoothies. We were told the price for a small was $7. Our jaws dropped open due to the cost but we HAD to make change so we bought one. I (Hannah) started sipping my new fruit smoothie, not really enjoying it. Something was wrong with it. Dale grabbed it -"um...it has alcohol in it Hannah, this is a margarita" Ha. We had a good laugh. My first drink and it was accidental. If I'm keeping tabs, I don't consider that a real drink. I had 2 sips. Nasty to say the least. yuck. That $7 went down the sewer. We headed back to the hotel with our change, showered on the roof near the pool, and gathered our belongings. It was a beautiful hotel -I highly recommend actually staying there -especially because of the customer service. It is called The Hotel of South Miami. We made it to the airport just in time to find out that our flights were delayed for at least an hour and half due to weather in Atlanta. Wish we would have known earlier. We could have spent more time on the beach. We spent hours sitting on the Miami beach airport floor waiting for our flight. We were assured that all our connecting … [Read more...]