a perfect afternoon in the Upper West Side

You all know how yesterday morning started out. Not great. But it was only up from there! The kids took their nap at 9:30am (their naps just get earlier and earlier, don't ask me why!) and when they woke at 11:30am our scheduled play date to Central Park was cancelled. Which was fine, but left us hanging a little. I'd promised Lily a trip outside before her nap so we couldn't stay home and cuddle which is all I wanted to do. What's new?

Anyway, I was obligated to get the kids and myself OUT. So we just started walking in search of NYC adventure. And thus began, the perfect Upper West Side afternoon. The Upper West Side is a great neighbourhood, of which we're at the cusp. We live in one of the very last streets to qualify and are awfully close to Harlem. The UWS is all the streets from 68th to 110th and the avenues of Riverside Park to Central Park West. We live at 107 to give you an idea just how close we are. But the really great stuff is in the 70s and 80s. Which is where we headed.

It was close to 40 blocks (thus 40 minutes) and a great workout pushing the stroller there and back. We enjoyed everything we passed and it was a really interactive day. Stopping to look at the exotic birds in the window of a pet shop, stopping to sit frequently (Lily LOVES sitting on things that appear to be Lily-sized, like steps or curbs that she must think are benches/couches just for her), meeting other moms and babies, etc. Our first official stop was to read some books on the steps of the American Museum of Natural History. They have a gorgeous green lawn that is fenced off (which makes zero sense if you ask me) so we were enjoying a concrete park of sorts. Lily and I read some books on the steps while Oli snoozed in the stroller. There was a fashion shoot happening on the steps that Lily ran through. I apologized but the model and photographer were like "Go Lily! No problem!".

Next we went to Housing Works - an amazing NYC thrift collective filled with high end home goods and clothing. The proceeds go to HIV/AIDS victims and there is a ton of amazing stuff. I was on a mission to spend no more than $10 today (hard when you're out in Manhattan) and I'd already had a Starbucks iced coffee, so I didn't seriously shop. I did find a great vintage Newcastle Brown Ale mug for Brad for $3 and loved browsing their designer jeans (only $35 for Rock and Republic, Seven, and Citizens!). Turns out he doesn't like that beer (who knew?) but he loves the cup :)

Then we stopped at a small book cart - they're all over the city and have amazing used books in terrific condition for super cheap. When my parents were here we got a hardcover over-sized Madeline book for $7 and today I picked up If You Give A Moose a Muffin (remember it from my list?) and a lovely board book on the Nativity that I'll save for Christmas, all for $4. Lily and Oli flipped through their new books while I window shopped, finishing at the most fabulous store I've ever been in - Johnathan Adler.

I'd heard of Johnathan Adler before, but didn't know to correlate his style with him. That said, I've loved his style for-EVER but didn't know I was his fan. Now I know. And I love me some Johnathan Adler. Without knowing it, I've attempted to decorate my home after his trademark style. Now that I know him and his work, I will all the more. Browsing there was literally a breath of fresh air compared to my black and dark apartment. I loved chatting with the store employees (one from Edmonton!) and just enjoying dwelling in such a lovely space. Oli was napping again so Lily and I walked around. She loved the stuffed owls, but at $40 a pop I didn't even let her hold it, ha!

Johnathan Adler, 74th and Columbus
On the way home, Lily and I split a Magnolia vanilla cupcake and then we all played at the Safari playground in Central Park. Central Park has some incredible play grounds (post on that coming up!) and I love the variety of style. This one was mostly huge statues of plastic hippos and there was a large canoe immersed in the ground which was painted as water. What a cool park! And a great day.



  1. What a fun day in NYC! I love that Lily ran through a photo shoot and everyone was cool about it :)

  2. This sounds like so much fun!! Designer jeans for 35 bucks? I am in!

  3. sounds so fun! i love nyc...and i love all the fun little shops hidden throughout the city!