Friday, December 2, 2016

10 Best Christmas Trees in New York City


Christmas in New York City is always so magical. I know many of you are pretty familiar with the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree, but there are many more gorgeous designs to see. I thought a nice Top 10 list here would be a good idea. See how many of them you can find on your visit to the city for the holiday season! They are all unique, in design and that is what makes them so special.

In no particular order:

1. American Museum of Natural History Origami Tree 
2. Washington Square Park 
3. Metropolitan Museum of Art 
4. Bryant Park 
5. Madison Square Park 
6. Lotte New York Palace
7. Le Parker Meridian 
8. Lladro Store 
9. Lincoln Center 
10. Rockefeller Center 


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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Throwback Thursday "Rockefeller Center Tree 1950"


I cannot believe it is December 1st already! Where did this year go exactly? I found this very cool photograph from 1950 of the famous Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree. Looks as gorgeous then as it does now, however, I try to avoid area as much as possible. Just too darn crowded for my liking.

A little history on this famous tree:

The tree, usually a Norway spruce 69 to 100 feet (21 to 30 m) tall, has been put up every year since 1933.The trees are now scouted by the Head Gardener at Rockefeller Center, Erik Pauzé. Once a suitable tree is located, a crane supports it while it is cut and moves it to a custom telescoping trailer that can transport trees up to 125 feet (38 m) tall, although the width of New York City streets passing through Rockefeller Center limits the height of the trees to 110 feet (34 m). Local, family-owned business, Christmas Tree Brooklyn provides logistics support for delivering the tree safely into the city.

Once at the Rockefeller Center, the tree is supported by four guy-wires attached at its midpoint and by a steel spike at its base. Scaffolding is erected around the tree to assist workers in hanging 45,000 multi-colored, LED lights.

The star that has topped the tree since 2004 is 9.5 feet (2.9 m) in diameter and weighs 550 pounds (250 kg). This "Swarovski Star" was created by German artist Michael Hammers, who in 2009 additionally designed his own star lighting production. In 2007, the tree went "green", employing LED lights.

The tree in 2016 is from Oneonta, NY, a Norway spruce and at 94 ft, the second tallest tree. I am sure it will be quite lovely as always!

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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Holiday Train Show at Grand Central

A mini version of Grand Central ! How cute is this? 
You had all the large buildings that you see walking around the city in the middle of those trains running along. So nice. 
King Kong climbing the Empire State Building 
Lovely view for you here, I love all the lights on the ceiling  
For the train collector, they sell many items related to train collecting, and items from the New York Transit Museum are available as well. 

I loved this little cabin! I wonder how long it takes them to put this display together? So much detail everywhere you look 






Those bottle brush trees are my favorite! 

I am glad I got the chance to see this during the holiday season. It is a very small area, and with folks bringing children, in strollers or just walking, it can be a bit rough. You may be best to go during the week to be less crowded, as it runs until February 2016. For the train lover, it is a must. 

From their website: 

Lionel trains once again will capture hearts and imaginations at the Transit Museum where Metro-North, New York Central and subway trains depart from a miniature GCT. The Museum’s store and booth at the Holiday Gift Fair offer great gifts for your holiday shopping!


HOURS

Monday – Friday: 8am – 8pm   Saturday and Sunday: 10am – 6pm

Extended holiday hours from November 22 to December 24:

 Monday – Friday: 8am – 8pm  Saturday: 10am – 8pm Sunday: 10am – 7pm

PRESENTED BY


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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Dafni Greek Tavern

My friend and I were in the city the day before Thanksgiving to see the new fashion exhibit at the Met Museum. For dinner, I choose Dafni Greek Tavern, near Port Authority. We were getting our bus home from there, and I liked being close to the terminal. I really love Greek food, it is very similar to Italian, and I have not tasted anything I did not like. We were hungry and excited! 
It is a very small and quaint place, I suggest making reservations whenever possible. It wasn't too busy when we arrived, but by the time we left, it was full. This location, 42nd Street between 8th and 9th Avenue, is good for dinner prior to a Broadway show. 


The first thing that came out was pita bread. I just love pita, my Mom introduced me to them and I love to make a sandwich for work with pita bread. These were INSANE! They were warm, and clearly homemade, we were both pretty happy. 

The decor is lovely, and it's a very small space. Reservations are a must, even for lunch. 

This is what pita heaven looks like! 

Our entrees came with a salad. Fresh, homemade feta cheese was sublime. There is a huge difference in homemade cheese than the stuff in the supermarket. Another 10 here. 

Haloumi 
Distinctive Cypriot cheese wrapped in grape leaves

Neither one of us ever tried this dish, but oh my goodness. The cheese had so much flavor, and with the grape leaves, out of this world! It couldn't get any better, we thought. 

Yes, it could get better 

Garides Mikrolimano 
Sautéed shrimp with tomato sauce, feta, olives, over rice

My friend's dish was pretty sublime. She said it was the best thing she ever ate in New York City. She had more of that homemade feta cheese too, lucky her! 

Seafood Brochette 
Grilled seafood over rice

My meal was completely insane! Salmon, calamari, huge shrimp and scallops. It was just oh so darn wonderful! The salmon melted in your mouth, as well as all other seafood. 

The portion was huge and I was happy to take some home for my Friday night dinner. 

Oh and our wines were very good as well. Forgot to mention those wines. We had to do dessert because it just made sense. We opted for items we never had before, I always love being with a friend who is just as adventurous with food as me. Thank you Mary!! 

Walnut Cake with Homemade Yogurt and Honey 

Another homemade item here was the greek yogurt. This was really very good, nothing to me beats the flavor combo of walnuts, honey and yogurt. 

Galaktoboureko 

This was just plain silly. This is made with layers of golden brown crispy phyllo, sprinkled with melted butter, filled with the most creamy custard and bathed in scented syrup. INSANE. Oh so good this was, I can't even explain. Are you getting the hint this is a great restaurant? 

This is really what New York City is all about. Don't visit a chain restaurant when here, find a gem like this to be totally blown away by your meal. You can eat at a chain anytime, these places are once in a lifetime when visiting New York City. 


That custard was the most yummy in the world. I would seriously go just for a piece of this and a cup of java. Happy I would be. 

We just about killed both of them. I cannot wait to go back to try something else and I am now ever so glad I leave from Port Authority at times. Who knew? 

On our way to the Met we became 10 again seeing the balloons for the Macy's Parade being blown up for the next day. The taxi driver was laughing at us, but neither one had seen the balloons before and it was pretty neat. They are really very HUGE, but oh so darn cool. Next year I think I need to investigate this more! 

Dafni Greek Taverna Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

If you are looking for a restaurant in this area, and you like Greek food, stop here. It was just so excellent, and the prices were very good for New York City. Large portions as well, so the men in your party will be sure to get full. I really cannot wait to get back and try something else. New York City truly is one of the best foodie cities in the world! 


325 West 42 St  New York   NY  10036 (between 8th and 9th Avenues)

Tel: 212-315-1010    

Business Hours: Monday - Thursday, 11:00 am - 10:30 pm

Friday-Saturday, 11:00 am - 11:00 pm

Sunday, 11:00 am - 9:30 pm


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Monday, November 28, 2016

Casa Casale at Peddler's Village

With today being Cyber Monday, I thought I would highlight for you the amazing Italian shop Casa Casale in Peddler's Village. This is not a sponsored post by any means, but if you are looking for authentic gifts from Italy, this is a great place to shop. They do offer online shopping, and you can have a lovely gift basket made and sent to loved ones.  



I loved the different pastas available. Their shop carries Olive Oils, Spreads, Pesto and Sauce, Sweets, Balsamic, Linens from Italy.  





If you are looking for anything Italian, this is a good place to check out. If you cannot stop in person, online ordering works well on their website. It is a place I always check out when visiting Peddler's Village! 

Some information from their website:

Step into a charming world full of wonderful Italian food, gifts and decor for your home and kitchen. Open since 2000, Casa Casale was created to celebrate Italy and its rich traditions. In May of 2015, Mike and Michelle Kriwasch bought Casa Casale from its founder, and their goal is to keep everything that makes Casa Casale so special, while adding new and exciting products as well.

Casa Casale
Peddler's Village Shop #1
Rt. 202 & Street Road
Lahaska, PA 18931

Parking Right Behind the Store!

215.794.1474

Hours (check for extended during holiday season)
Sun-Wed: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Thursday-Sat: 10:00 am - 8:00 pm

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