Travel Planning: New York at Thanksgiving – A First Timer’s Guide to Food in Manhattan

I’ll preface this post with an apology – I only took two food photos during our trip. I know I’m a bad blogger in that respect, but honestly, most of the time I was too focused on scarfing my food to worry about taking a photo. I can’t help it, I’m a girl who likes her food. 🙂 To read more about our New York adventures, check out the shows we saw here, the sightseeing we did here, and our arrival here. PARK LANE HOTEL When we arrived at the Park Lane Hotel our first day in the city, we were ravenous. Even my mom, who’s been strictly dieting the last several months, was ready to eat whatever they put in front of us. I guess being on a flight that doesn’t feed you for over five hours will do that to a girl! Our late breakfast at the […] Read More

Travel Planning: New York City at Thanksgiving – Broadway Bound!

My favorite New York City experiences, without a doubt, were the shows! We saw Frozen at the St. James Theater, the Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular starring The Rockettes, and the New York City Ballet perform George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker. I would have loved to see at least one more show, but you know… money. For more about our trip, check out my other posts covering our sightseeing as well as our arrival to the city. FROZEN THE BROADWAY MUSICAL – 11/21/18 If you take nothing else away from this blog, know this – if you’re buying tickets for a show online, pay the extra to get them shipped to you! We bought our tickets February 2018 before Frozen even opened. Although I had thought I was buying them through Ticketmaster, apparently I got re-routed to a third-party website and was unknowingly sent invalid digital tickets. The customer […] Read More

Travel Planning: New York City at Thanksgiving – Playing Tourist

Welcome to part 2 of my New York adventure! In part 1, I previously covered our two hotels as well as our transportation to and from the airport. I also covered some of our planned excursions in my pre-planning post here. In looking back at that post, I wanted to touch on what we ended up doing, what we skipped, and the hidden gems we found along the way. CENTRAL PARK Our first day in New York, we arrived at the Park Lane Hotel shortly before lunch. Since we had no solid plans that day, and with the hotel right across the street from Central Park, we made that our first stop. Although tempting, I passed on trying out the skating rink which was probably a wise decision since I’m accident prone. Visiting a NYC urgent care wasn’t really high on my list of places to see! Central Park […] Read More

Travel Planning: New York City at Thanksgiving (Part 1)

I’m back from New York! If you haven’t had a chance, check out my pre-travel blog post detailing what I (foolishly) hoped to accomplish. This trip was truly a classic example of hard work and detailed planning paying off. Although there were a few stumbles along the way, for the most part the trip went smoothly and I couldn’t be happier with my first trip to New York. PLANES, TRAINS & AUTOMOBILES This trip was full of travel firsts: my first time using points to book my airfare, my first time using my two free United Club passes, and my first time trying to use my Priority Pass Select lounge access. Two out of three of these things went off without a hitch. I had no issue checking my free bag and accessing boarding group two, and the United Club at LAX was quite nice. However… I sorely underestimated […] Read More

Halloween Planning: My 2018 Costume – Little Dead Riding Hood

It’s that time of year! If you live in Southern California like me, it’s still eighty-five degrees, the trees are still green, and very few houses are decorated. California doesn’t really do seasons as much as “moments,” so it’s hard to embrace a fall-specific holiday like Halloween. Thanksgiving is a bit easier weather-wise, but that one gets lost in the mix with Christmas steam-rolling everybody, so I’m not sure if that one counts. FITTING IN When I started working for my current company June 2015, it was made clear to me that Halloween is a BIG DEAL. Everyone goes all out, we do a costume contest, and kids get to come in and trick-or-treat. Anyone wearing everyday work clothes gets serious side-eye, and the bigger, the better. The result? My piddling costume efforts of the previous years went by the wayside. I didn’t want to be the odd kid out, so […] Read More

Why I (Sort of) Quit Facebook – And How I Did It

This past year, I’ve been trying to take steps to improve my mental and physical well-being. Although I’m not doing so great with the physical, I’ve definitely taken steps toward the mental. How? I’ve (mostly) stopped looking at Facebook. SO HERE’S THE STORY It’s hard to believe, but I’ve had a Facebook account since 2005. It began when I was preparing for college and received a flyer from my university suggesting that I sign up for this future behemoth. I’m channeling Iliza Shlesinger here, but back in my day, Facebook was so much simpler. You had your page, your high school and new college friends had their pages, you posted random funny shit, and you poked each other for attention. There was no newsfeed, you couldn’t really share external content, and – gasp! – you could only add 60 photos to a photo album. I think Facebook really changed […] Read More

Travel Planning: New York City at Thanksgiving

2018 has been quite the travel year for me! Normally, Mr. P² and I do maybe one long-distance trip and one road trip per year. Between our trip to Paris last December (yes I’m including that in this roundup), a last-minute trip back east, our road trip to San Diego Comic-Con and an upcoming overnight to Lake Arrowhead, I’m all over the place! However, the biggest trip this year as far as I’m concerned is my very first trip to… New York City! DEVILS IN THE DETAILS People who know me are always shocked when I tell them I’ve never been to New York. It seems like one of those places that most casual US-based travelers have checked off their list pretty early on – like Hollywood, Vegas or Cabo (haven’t been there either). For some reason, New York has never seemed like a priority and always plays second fiddle […] Read More

Planning for Your First San Diego Comic-Con: A How-To Guide (Part 4)

REALITY: CHECK After a series of initial successes between being prepared (Part 1), getting a great hotel and parking spot (Part 2) and surviving our first day (Part 3), we knew something had to give, and the universe kindly delivered. Friday morning in one of the smaller ballrooms, there was to be a panel for an animated series that Mr. P² and I both enjoy, Young Justice. The series was cancelled abruptly several years ago despite rave reviews, and will be making a comeback on the new DC Universe streaming service some time next year. The panel included voice and creative talent, and we figured they would be showing new footage, so we were anxious to get inside and grab seats. Remember the “C” doors we got stuck at the first day? We were stupid enough to try getting in the same doors on Friday, and not only were they not […] Read More

Planning for Your First San Diego Comic-Con: A How-To Guide (Part 3)

PUTTING IT ALL TOGETHER After all the research (Part 1), and all the travel decisions (Part 2), it’s finally time to head down to San Diego Comic-Con! In order to beat LA traffic and avoid paying for an additional night at the hotel, we were on the road by 4:45 AM on Thursday. Let me tell you, I am NOT a morning person, but the prospect of a fun road trip (and Starbucks) always gets me out of bed. If you are driving and don’t mind an absurdly long day, I’d highly recommend leaving early – we hit zero traffic, and pulled into the hotel parking lot at 6:55 AM. Luckily, we were not the only bleary-eyed Con goers in the lobby, and the hotel kindly allowed us to store our luggage and perishables in their air-conditioned storage. Since we decided to bring food with us that needed to […] Read More

Planning for Your First San Diego Comic-Con: A How-To Guide (Part 2)

Hotel, Parking & Passes, oh my! Finally, Part 2! It’s been a busy couple of months for me, and my planning sensibilities have been on overload. However, I didn’t want to leave anyone hanging, so for your reading pleasure, here’s Part 2 of How To Survive San Diego Comic-Con (with your sanity intact). Here’s Part 1 for reference 🙂 In conjunction with my initial research and provision preparations, I tackled what could have been the most costly part of the trip – our accommodations. As a newbie travel hacker, I have been steadily accruing Hilton Honors points for some time through a credit card signup bonus and everyday spending, and although I had earmarked the points for a different trip, I knew the only way we’d be able to swing this trip was by using all available resources. Thankfully, I found a Hilton Garden Inn not too far from […] Read More