December 21, 2023

Christmas in New York

Posted in: Travel

“Welcome to New York / It’s been waiting for you” played in my head as we flew over the concrete jungle. Airlines really miss an opportunity to play songs like this when they arrive. Is it too much to ask for them to play Sweet Home Alabama when we come home? 🙂

Last year, Amanda said she and her husband, Shane, were planning on taking a trip to New York around Christmas. I told her I was jealous and that I’ve always wanted to visit New York around Christmas. She said we should come with them. Weston didn’t believe me at first, but they texted us that night and we started planning our trip!

DAY 1 

We left our house at 2:30 am – that’s right, the morning one. Our flight was leaving from Birmingham at 6:00 am and we gave ourselves plenty of time to get to the airport and through security.

Instead of trying to navigate the subway system with our luggage, we hired a driver to take us from LaGuardia to our hotel near Times Square. One hundred percent recommend doing that in New York! It definitely made traveling a lot less stressful.

After checking into our hotel, we found Joe’s Pizza and had a quick bite to eat before going through our to do list for the day. Just the first day we went to Bryant Park, Grand Central Station, Saks Fifth Avenue, Rockefeller Center, Top of the Rock, St. Patrick’s Cathedral, and Times Square. We had dinner at Carmine’s and headed back to the hotel to rest for another long day.


We hit the ground running the following day to see as much as we possibly could while we were in town. After getting our caffeine fix, we took the subway to the Staten Island Ferry. The breathtaking views of the city and the Statue of Liberty were worth seeing even with the piercing wind.

Our next stop was a popular photo spot in Dumbo, just across the Brooklyn Bridge. It was much more crowded than we expected, but we still got some cool photos. Then we made our way to the top of the Brooklyn Bridge for some photos. We ended up walking all the way across though!

At the 6th Avenue Fountain, I had three groups of people approach me and ask me to take their photos. I guess I look like a trustworthy person 🙂 While we were crossing the street in Dumbo, I offered to take this family’s photo so they could have one with everybody!

We saw quite a few influencers on our trip – and even saw the same one two days in a row! Amanda did a great impersonation.

Next on the list was Wall Street. We saw the New York Stock Exchange building and continued exploring.

We found the flagship Tiffany store and had to check it out. Roberto made it an exciting experience for me and Amanda! We both got to try on multiple rings, including one with a price tag of $101,000. He treated us to sparkling water and lots of laughs!

We passed the running Bull statue and made our way to Serendipity for lunch. The food was so good and we were almost completely full, but we had to try one of their famous milkshakes! They were way too large for us to eat by ourselves, so we got four cups and split one.

While we waited for our carriage ride reservations, we checked out Central Park, The Plaza Hotel, and Bergdorf Goodman.

As the sun set, we cozied up in our horse-drawn carriage for a ride through Central Park. Our guide told us all the special places we passed that were in movies or had some historical significance. I believe she said over 200 movies have been filmed in Central Park! We made a few stops and took photos at each one.

Dinner was at Haven Rooftop that evening. We weren’t sure how cold it would be on the rooftop, but it was covered and heated!

We got a little adventurous after dinner and decided it would be a good idea to take the subway to see the 911 Memorial. Probably wouldn’t have been a big deal, but it was after 10:00 pm and we were still newbies navigating the subway. You probably guessed it, but we got lost. And movies make it seem like there are subway entrances on every corner. Definitely not the case. We ended up wandering around the Financial District and finally found the subway going back to our hotel. We boarded the last one running for the evening.


Even though we had a late night, we knew we needed to start early so we could do all the items on our list. We started in China Town, then made our way to Little Italy to try some authentic Italian pastries.

Then we made our way back to Midtown for allll the shopping. A few stores that we had to visit were Macy’s, FAO Swartz, and Lego.

We had early dinner reservations at La Grande Boucherie before seeing Wicked on Broadway. We wanted to be fancy one night, so we made the guys dress up with us. Amanda and I found the perfect dress and shoes – so perfect that we both bought the same ones! We had planned on tricking our husbands into wearing matching suits and ties, but Weston threw a wrench in that plan the night before we left. He refused to bring more than a total of two pairs of shoes, so he ended up wearing a completely different outfit. I sent a picture of his outfit to Shane and Amanda and Shane happened to have a similar one, so they ended up matching after all!


When we started planning our trip, I told Amanda we had to take pictures in Central Park. We got up super early to beat the crowds of people, but it was totally worth it!

I’m still cracking up at Amanda’s incognito attire that she wore on the way to Central Park. At one point, it looked like I was her personal assistant and Weston was her body guard. One guy stared at Amanda pretty hard trying to figure out if she was a famous person haha.

Here are just a few of my favorites from my “big” camera (aka not my phone).

I could have stayed in Central Park all morning to take pictures, but everyone was freezing and we had to get back to our hotel. We quickly packed up, checked out, and grabbed a bite to eat at Magnolia Bakery.

As we were leaving, it started snowing! We couldn’t believe it. We wanted it to snow enough to see it, but not so much that our flight home was delayed. Our wish came true!

The last item on our list was to see the Rockettes Christmas Spectacular. We had great seats and thoroughly enjoyed the show. I was pleasantly surprised to see them do a full nativity scene. I just didn’t expect any kind of reference to Jesus in New York, but I’m glad to be proven wrong.

We made one last coffee stop while we waited for our driver to take us to the airport. Good thing we were a little early because it took a lot longer to drive to the airport with all the traffic.

It was so nice to have an adult vacation with friends, but we were all ready to see our babies! New York is very fast-paced and I think we had our fill for this year. We walked about 80,000 steps during the four days we were there. After we got home, we made a shared photo album, so there’s a good mixture of all of our photos in the blog post. It’s probably mostly mine and Shane’s photos though. We learned that Weston and Amanda hate taking pictures about as much as me and Shane like taking them. Can’t wait for our next adventure!

  1. Kathryn Simpkins says:

    Sounds like the perfect time!
    Y’all packed in so much and I am so happy for y’all. Sounds like the perfect trip and I enjoyed all the pictures !

  2. Crystal Ballard says:

    Pictures are great! These just convinced me I’m taking the trip next year. Been putting it off too long!

  3. Lisa Sexton says:

    Did y’all plan your trip yourselves or did you have help from a travel agent? If y’all put all this together, I’m impressed and…I want to hire you! 🤣🤣🤣

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