On our last day there we wanted to stop by St. Patricks Cathedral. We were surprised to find that it was under construction. Despite the construction we were still allowed to go inside and see the Cathedral. It was beautiful even though there was scaffolding all over. I’m glad we stopped by. After spending time at St. Patricks, we headed down to Bleeker Street in Greenwich Village. I really liked this area of New York…smaller streets with lots of cute stores. Here we ate at another yummy gluten free restaurant, Risotteria. There entire menu is gluten free and they are known for their, you guessed it, risotto!Look we found some Murray’s Cheese Retail and Bar! We even found a Murray’s Street later in the day. After lunch we headed down to the Financial District so we could see the new Freedom Tower. By the time we got down there it really started to pour down rain so we decided not to stand in line (outside) for the museum. It was nice to see the new tower up though. Looks great! After this we headed back to our hotel to grab our bags and fly back to sunny Florida. We had a great time visiting with Ann and exploring the city but it’s nice to be back in the warm Florida sun 🙂
Before our trip we bought tickets to “The Ride,” which I thought was supposed to be a bus tour around the city but it really just took us around Times Square…It was an interesting ride…that’s all I have to say about that! After The Ride, we ran into Johnny Depp. He was kind enough to pose for some pictures with Ann 😉 Be sure and check out my other posts on NYC: Part I, Part II, Part IV.
While Ann was napping, Luke and I decided to rent some bikes and ride them through Central Park. Neither of us realized that you’re not actually allowed to ride through the Park…only around the park on the designated bike lanes. We definitely got yelled at once, no twice. One time I was in the running lane going the wrong direction and got yelled at by a girl that looked my age. It was terrifying. I felt horrible! Maybe some New Yorkers aren’t very nice after-all…Be sure and check out my other posts from NYC: Part I, Part III, Part IV.
Luke was invited to speak at the Renaissance Society of America conference in New York City at the end of March. Since this was Luke’s first speaking event, I didn’t want to miss it! My sister also wanted to be there to hear Luke speak and spend some time with us so she took the train from DC to NYC and met us there. Luke’s talk was on Thursday evening so we had the rest of the trip free to have some fun exploring the city. Unfortunately, I don’t have any photos of Luke talking because I was too embarrassed to use my camera during his talk…but he did an excellent job! The topic, was of course, way over my head…but he sounded great and even impressed a professor from KU Leuven who later took him out to lunch. All in all it was a fun trip and a nice break from work, work, work 🙂 When we arrived we took a Taxi to Blooms Deli. They have a ton of great gluten free options. We enjoyed sandwiches, burgers and french fries. They even brought us a big bowl of pickles…that none of us touched. haha The next day while Luke was out to eat with the professor from KU Leuven, Ann and I trekked to another part of the city to have some mac & cheese at S’MAC. The weather wasn’t ideal while we were there. It wasn’t too chilly but it did rain quite a bit. Thankfully on the day with the most rain, a man offered us a free umbrella. Who said New Yorkers weren’t very nice? I’ve been to both Bloom’s and S’MAC on prior trips to NYC. They are favorites of mine 🙂 S’MAC offers a variety of mac & cheeses…from the original All-American to Mediterranean, Cajun and even Buffalo Chicken!Be sure and check out my other posts on NYC: Part II, Part III, Part IV.
Luke and I had a really fun time renting a house with some friends of ours who moved away last year. They now live in North Georgia where Barrett coaches the Young Harris tennis team. They were in Florida for some tennis matches so we drove a couple hours to meet them and spend the week with them. The tennis team had an awesome week where they went 3 and 1 and even beat a nationally ranked team! The house was awesome with beautiful views of the bay. It was all a big surprise to me as Luke and Barrett planned the whole thing. I have to say I was quite impressed with the house!The house was just a few miles from Honeymoon Island. We spent most of our time by the pool at the house but we did get to the beach one day. It was the perfect day for the beach, 70’s with a cool breeze.One of our favorite things about the house was the zip line into the pool and the hot tub! Below are some animated photos of the boys being boys 🙂…and Aimee and I 🙂The house even had a kayak that Luke took out one day. He went all around the bay looking at all the big houses.It was a super relaxing trip …as you can see from the pics below. Luke definitely had a relaxing time 🙂 He cracks me up! But alas…we had to say goodbye and leave our friends and the beautiful bay. We’ve been back to work for about a week but Luke has a conference in NYC next weekend so I should have some more travel pics up soon!
Luke and I just got back from a quick trip to Michigan. We were there to check out my parent’s ministry Awaken and to be prayed over by a Priest my mom knows. I’ll talk more about that in another post! We had an awesome time and as an added bonus my sister came into town too! Somehow I spent the whole weekend at my parents house and didn’t get any pictures of my mom OR dad! Oh well, here are the few pictures I did take! PS Ann is wearing another one of the headbands I knit 🙂As you can see we enjoyed all the snow Michigan had to offer…but BRRR was it COLD! Luke also enjoyed the weekend indoors finishing up his book by Thomas Merton, The Seven Story Mountain. We braved the cold one more time for some snowy pics 🙂 And lastly, below are some pics I took on my phone. I enjoyed spending time with Lucy on the couch while I knit Luke a sock! It’s the first sock I ever knit and it actually turned out! Now I just have to get the motivation to knit the second sock… 🙂 OH and Lucy was absolutely adorable with her ball this weekend. She wouldn’t go anywhere without it, it was so cute!
Merry Christmas! Luke and I spent our Christmas visiting his family in Oregon this year. I hadn’t been there since last Christmas so it was wonderful to be back and see everyone! Almost as soon as we got there Luke was asked if he would play in the Alumni basketball game at his high school. He was an all-star back in high school and he’s still got it! He hasn’t been able to play much basketball in recent years since he tore his ACL on both knees but he decided to put on a brace and go for it. I’m so glad he did! It was so fun watching him in action! 🙂If you remember last year, we spent Christmas at Luke’s family’s cabin in the mountains. You can see my post about it here. This year we spent Christmas at their home in Heppner and then headed up to the cabin the next day. Below are some of the awesome gifts everyone got. I’m especially excited about my photography and knitting books and all the classic movies 🙂 A really cool gift that Luke’s brother Sean got was a book titled The Way of the Kings. His brother Ian got it for him while in Europe this past semester and had it signed by the author. Pretty cool!Luke and I gave his parents an album from Pinhole Pro with photos from last Christmas. We had it shipped directly there so I hadn’t seen it when they opened it. It turned out really nice! I will definitely use Pinhole Pro again 🙂 We also received an entire binder full of the best recipes from all the family members. Very excited to try out some yummy dishes! Luke also got a Kindle HDX from his parents…he loves it! Yes, we are spoiled! The next day we headed up to the cabin which is always super relaxing. We spent time reading, watching movies, hanging out by the fire pit, I finished some knitting projects, and I took lots of pics! We had a LOT less snow this year. We could actually drive to the cabin. Usually it can only be reached by snowmobile in the winter time. It was actually kind of nice being able to drive there…but I would have preferred lots of snow! Oh well, next year 😉Speaking of taking lots of pics…I took A LOT of pics of Luke and I :). Luke got me a really awesome travel tripod for my birthday this year and I recently ordered a wireless remote for it…so we had to test it out…in several different locations 😉 We even got Luke’s dog Bella in some of the shots! I can’t talk about the cabin and not mention the new sauna Luke’s dad built! What a great way to escape the cold weather! The sauna sits just to the left of the cabin in it’s own little house. When you walk in, there is a room with a shower, towels, and some water to cool off with. To the left is the sauna. My lens wasn’t quite wide enough to get the whole sauna in the picture but it’s just about big enough to fit 6 or so people. Below are some more pics taken with my new tripod and remote :). I had just finished knitting that headband for a friend and wanted to get some pics of it before mailing it off. We also got a family pic out on the lake, minus Ian who was still in Europe 🙂 I was afraid we might fall through…but we all made it out with our lives!Last but not least, Ian came home! He had spent the last semester studying abroad in Italy. We all drove to Portland on the 30th to pick him up from the airport. We had dinner together and then we spent the night at a hotel near the airport so that Luke and I could fly out early the next morning. I’m so glad we got to see Ian, but wish it would have been for longer!At least we got one family picture together with everyone! Merry Christmas from the Murrays 🙂
I guess I should really say, Happy New Year! I’m finally getting around to posting about Thanksgiving. By the time I have Christmas photos ready it will probably be Easter 🙂 Just kidding. Luke and I spent Thanksgiving in Kansas City with my mom’s side of the family and it was great fun! Below is a family pic followed by pics of some of my cute little cousins!
After we spent some time outside taking pics of my older cousins we had to go inside and take pics of our new little cousin, baby Elise! After Thanksgiving dinner at my Aunt Donna’s, we all headed over to our hotel on the Plaza to watch the Plaza light ceremony! A bunch of us then walked down to the Plaza to grab some Starbucks (and check out just how long the line would be this year), a Thanksgiving tradition!The next day, before my cousin Melissa and her kids headed out of town, a bunch of us met at Crown Center to go ice skating! Afterwards, my Mom, cousin Kelly and I, hit the mall for some fun 🙂 Last but not least, we were blessed to be able to attend a football game at Arrowhead Stadium, where the Denver Broncos (Luke’s favorite team) beat the Kansas City Chiefs! A special thanks to my Aunt Becky and Uncle Gary for the tickets! We had great seats in the end zone and got to see lots of action! We bravely wore our Broncos jerseys and were fortunate to escape Arrowhead with our lives!!
Our final day in Michigan arrived and I realized I had not taken any pictures of the beautiful fall colors like I had hoped! To remedy this situation my mom pulled over on the side of the road on our way home from Mass that morning and we hopped out of the car and took these pics 🙂 I think they turned out pretty nice for just picking a random spot on the side of the road! Glad we were able to make it happen! PS wish my dad had been with us! He drives to Mass separately because he’s a sacristan and has to get there early. Oh well, next time!
While in Michigan we celebrated my bday a little early. Luke had me totally fooled about my gift. He had dropped subtle hints that he had gotten me something totally different so I was completely surprised and so excited that he actually got me exactly what I wanted which was a really nice tripod! I love how happy he looks in the pics below…he’s so happy he could make me happy! Love my hubby!Below is a family photo we took with my new tripod! Worked like a charm 🙂 PS we missed you Paul and Lauren!Later in the afternoon we all drove to Frankenmuth which is a town in Michigan known for it’s Oktoberfest! No one could believe that my parents have lived in Michigan for 10+ years and have never been to Frankenmuth! It was a first for all of us. Of course before we could do anything we had to stop at Bronner’s where it’s Christmas all year round!After Bronner’s we headed to the Bavarian Inn for a yummy German meal 🙂