Thursday, December 17, 2009


As part of the Social Concerns Committee at church, I helped with the Holiday Winterfest. At this event, we invited various vendors to sell their fair-trade goods. We also invted the community to consider doing some Christmas shopping from these vendors. "Fair trade" means that the product was made by someone who was paid fairly for it. Out idea was, "What would Jesus want us to buy?" or "How can we buy some gifts that help others?" So there were scarves and purses from a co-op of women in rural Mexico and ornaments from Peru and baskets from Vietnam, along with fair trade coffee, tea and chocolate. It was a fun event (read: too much work!) and we were able to pick up a few gifts for those on our list.

Oh Christmas Tree!

We put up the tree a few weeks ago and did a little bit of decorating. When I say a "little bit of decorating" I mean it. And I don't mean "... and we'll finish decorating soon!" I just don't own Christmas decor. I never seem to be stable at Christmas. Last year I was planning my wedding. The year before that I was having a breakdown and was in the process of moving in with my parents. The year before that was my best attempt but it was really my first Christmas in my own place and I was broke and busy.

So we have a tiny tree and a few random ornaments. My friend Ashley donated a few more. Maybe I'll shop the after-Christmas sales and pick up just a few more festive items.

Monday, December 7, 2009

NYC Photos

If I Make it Here . . .

. . . I'll make it ANYWHERE! It's up to you, New York . . . Neeeew Yoooork!!!
(Sorry Aunt Barbara. I know you hate that song!)
The Monroys Take Manhattan!
Thursday: Thanksgiving day! Well, we spent it on a plane/in airports/in a car. When we got to our hotel at 11:00 PM we wandered our neighborhood for a bit and then found a diner where we got a roast chicken dinner with mashed potatoes, broccoli and stuffing. So we had a Thanksgiving after all!
Friday: We had bagels for breakfast then we went to Times Square - which we didn't really like. It felt more like Vegas. Then we walked to Rockefellar Center, which was also busy (HELLO! Black Friday?) but beautiful. We went on a tour of NBC. Then we headed to the West Village and wandered around before having dinner at a cute little Italian place called Po. I LOOOVED the West Village. Later that night we got dessert with my college BFF Monica. She lives in Boston but came to NYC to hang out with us!>.
Saturday: We went to Chelsea with Monica and shopped at vintage stalls. Then we went to Lombardi's for pizza - supposedly they are the original pizzeria in the US. Later we saw an improv tournament at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater.
Sunday: Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, then we saw a bit of the financial district and got Chinese food. At night we went to Gramercy Tavern for super-late dinner that was amazing.
Monday: We slept in, since we had been staying up until 2:00 AM every night. It was raining but we shlepped to the Lower East Side for Katz's Deli and had yummy pastrami. After a nap (me) and homework (Aaron), we grabbed a slice of pizza and saw The Toxic Avenger musical. It was off-broadway and it was really fun! For American Idol fans out there, Dianna Degarmo played the blind librarian and was great.

Tuesday: We were going to go to the Moma . . . but it was closed! I was soooo sad. We went to the American Folk Art Museum next door which was awesome. We got Gray's Papaya for lunch and Magnolia cupcakes/banana pudding for dessert before taking a long walk through Central Park. Then, sadly, it was time to go home!
Overall, it was a great trip! New York did not disapoint. I can't wait to go back. Next time, I'll want to go in the spring so I can actually tolerate being outside more.