The Sisters

The Sisters



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The First Sister

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The Second Sister

The Third Sister

The Third Sister

The Fourth Sister

The Fourth Sister

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Edelweiss Lodge and Resort

I promise that I'm almost done with my Germany posts!

We spent most of our trip at the Edelweiss Lodge and Resort in Garmisch. It is a military owned resort and is on the base in Garmisch. We were really glad we stayed there. It is a nice hotel and is convenient to a lot of the things we wanted to see in Bavaria. The views were beautiful and our room opened up to a large lawn area where the kids could play or run to the park that was right around the corner.

It has 3 restaurants, a snack bar, a pool, a small store and is in walking distance to the commissary and PX. Just as a note, the commissary is in walking distance, but it takes 5-10 minutes and you have to leave the base and cross the street and go onto the other side of the base, so if it's pouring down rain please take an umbrella, not just a raincoat or better yet drive. I speak from personal experience.

The restaurants are good. We actually only ate at each of them once. The dinner at Market station was good and was reasonably priced, especially when compared to other places we had eaten in Germany. The breakfast brunch buffet at the Pullman Place was excellent. They only have them on Sundays so be sure to make a reservation because it fills up fast. You can make reservations through the Open Table App. There is also Zuggy's on the Lower level. They have pizzas which were good, but most of the pizzas out in town are better. There is also a snack bar called The Point, which has a microwave you can use. This was such a blessing for us, because we discovered that the commissary had microwaveable rice and that's pretty much all our 1 year old wants to eat. We also bought some Korean Ramen at the commissary and just asked for hot water at the Point. It was awesome for nights when we didn't want anything fancy. The rooms have mini-fridges so we bought some cereal, milk, fruit and juice at the commissary so the kids could eat breakfast while we got ready in the morning. Plus it kept costs down.

The resort has different day tours that they offer. You can find a list on their website. I was so excited when I saw the list of activities they offered, but then I started to tally up the price per person and figured out that if we did all of the activities we wanted then the costs would really add up, especially since you have to pay for the kids as well. Most things in Germany are free for kids 5 and under. So, I looked into getting a rental car. I'm so glad we did! First, because having a rental car meant that we did not need to take trains for the 5 hour car ride from Ramstein to Garmisch. Second, it gave us a lot of flexibility to go where we wanted, whenever we wanted. Third, this reason:

Our youngest, who had just turned 1, was tired of traveling by planes and trains. If we had put him on tour buses, he would have been impossible. Instead, as soon as we got in the car we gave him his pacifier and blanket and he would fall asleep within 5 minutes. It was awesome. We could drive, in relative peace (we still have two other boys) and he was much more comfortable. Alpine Adventures in the lobby has flyers for their excursions, driving directions, and GPS addresses if you are driving. Also, toward the end of the trip we were expecting rain so we asked them for a list of rainy day destinations. Alpine Adventures also sells American - European outlet converters. I purchased one on Amazon before we left, that worked well, but it was more expensive than the ones at the resort. They have them for $1.25 at the resort. Also, they take dollars at the resort, so make sure you have some dollars available and not just Euros.

Renting a car for 2 weeks ended up being about the same as paying for all of the excursions through the hotel, but we were able to go to places not offered through the resort and we were able to leave whenever we wanted to. Some of our favorite spots were not available through the resort and we loved being able to drive to random little towns and exploring. We may have gotten more information through the tours, but let's be honest, we would have been wrangling children and no one else would have enjoyed it. Keep in mind that you do have to pay for tolls and a Vignette in Austria and gas, but again it ended up being about the same with a lot less hassle. We did get stuck in quite a bit of traffic going to and from Ramstein, but we just had to be patient. There were a few times when the GPS steered us wrong, the worst time being when it took us up a bike path, which can be hard to navigate in a Volvo SUV. Other than that, it worked out pretty well. Driving in Europe can be fun and exciting, especially in Lichtenstein where the roads are about as small as the country itself. Also, be careful in Austria, they have a LOT of speeding cameras. Trust me.

The other thing I appreciated about the resort was the laundry room. I bought some Tide Pods at the commissary and that saved me money from having to buy the little boxes of Tide in the laundry room. I was really grateful for the laundry room, because we were able to pack a little less and just wash clothes a few times. Waiting for clothes to dry can occasionally get a little boring, so you take selfies.

We were there for the 4th of July and BMW hosted a 4th of July celebration with bounce houses, different activities, face painting, food, and a really great fireworks display. It was neat to be in a foreign country, celebrating our country's independence at a resort for military servicemen and their families.

BMW also had a test drive event over the weekend. So my husband was able to take a couple of cars out by himself for a half hour each.

I will write about our favorite places to see around the resort in another post, but we really enjoyed our time there. Everyone was friendly and helpful. The kids loved the hot tub and pool area. We really didn't spend much time at the resort during the day, but we enjoyed our time there! So, if you're in the military or are related to anyone in the military then you should go! We would love to go back and really want to go for Christmas some time. I bet it's beautiful with the snow and different Christmas markets.

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Hotel Rheinfels and the V8 Hotel

We stayed in 4 hotels in Germany, two of which were affiliated with the military. The other two were Hotel Rheinfels in Sankt Goar and the V8 Hotel in Stuttgart, Germany.

We headed to Sankt Goar right when we got to Germany. It takes 2 hours on trains from Ramstein to Sankt Goar, which wasn't two bad since you only have to make 2 transfers. When riding the trains with 3 kids and 5 bags, make sure you book your tickets online and look for the train car for bikes, because there is more open space for bags, strollers and things.

We stayed at Hotel Rheinfels, because it was recommended by my husband's cousin who had stayed there before. We wanted to visit Sankt Goar, because there are two castles in the area that were occupied at one point by my husband's ancestors. They are Burg Katz and Burg Rheinfels. Hotel Rheinfels was right on the river and about a 5 minute walk from the train station. We arrived there late and most things in Germany close early during the week, so we had called the owner of the hotel earlier and he had left a key for us out on the front porch. The owner and his family and other employees were very accommodating. The prices were definitely reasonable. They didn't have a large enough room for us the first night, but made sure to move us to a larger room the second night. My only complaint was that they didn't have a roll away crib. The rooms were clean and the view was fantastic!
The breakfast buffets, were included and delicious!

They set a table, including a highchair, up for us before we got down for breakfast. The showers were a little touchy and would suddenly be really hot, but I kind of noticed that as a trend in all of the hotels. It was centrally located and was directly across the street from the spot where you can pick up the ferry to the other side of the river. It is also a short walk to the small "train" that takes you up to the castle ruins.
The town is small, but fun to walk around. They have great bakeries, little shops and the world's largest cuckoo clock!
The ruins are fun to explore. They have a lot of tunnels and other fun things to explore.

After Sankt Goar we headed to Stuttgart, Germany and stayed at the V8 Hotel. My husband and my boys love cars, so we thought it would be fun. It was a little pricier than the other hotels, but it was fun for one night. Make sure you drive to the front of the hotel, because the back is nothing fancy and if you see the back first you may be worried that your husband has booked a night in a crazy hotel :) The front is much more attractive! The rooms are all decorated with cars. Ours had enough beds for all of us and had a roll away crib. The big bed, which the boys claimed, looked like a car and the rest of the room looked like a garage. There was a big window that looked into a car museum, which is included in your stay.

You can also get breakfast for 15 euros per adult. It was good, but a little pricey. It is fairly close to the Porsche museum, which was fun for the kids and of course my husband. If you go to the Porsche museum, be sure to take your parking ticket in with you and they will validate it at the ticket counter.

So, if you head to Germany check out these two hotels and let me know how you like them!

Space A Travel

Warning: This is long and technical. Bear with me.

Life in the military isn't always easy or fun, but it isn't always hard and horrible either! There are some fun perks. One of those perks is: Space A Travel. I had always heard of it growing up on an Army base and my husband had mentioned it a few times since we've been married, but for some reason it really stressed me out and I didn't think it would be something I'd like to do. Well, then my husband started to tell me about a military resort in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany and he started to show me all of the things you can do around the resort and I was hooked. I will write more about the resort in another post, but suffice it to say I really wanted to go. We looked into flying commercially and figured out that for a family of 5 people it would cost a little more than $6000. Not. Happening. So, we decided to look into Space A. In the end, Space A cost us $260 round trip. The entire trip including lodging, gifts, travel, food, and anything and everything else cost less than it would have cost us to fly to Germany commercially. It was awesome. You do have to pay a relatively small amount to fly Space A. It was $85 or so to fly there and $175 or so to fly back. You have to pay for customs fees. I think it is different if you are on a rotator plane. We were able to fly on 747s both ways, so you do pay a fee because they serve you meals and drinks and what not.

So, how did we do it?! I've had several friends on facebook ask me about it, because I think it's one of those things that people think about, but don't actually take advantage of, especially when you have young kids. The key to Space A is flexibility and planning. We have 3 kids, ages 6, 4 and 1 and I'm not that fun and flexible, so we couldn't really say, "Well, we get there when we get there!" or just backpack around. We needed hotels, rental cars and plans. Summertime is the busiest time for Space A travel and it can be difficult to get on a flight.

If you live close to a Space A terminal you can go to the terminal at the beginning of the month and they should have a calendar for the month with tenative dates and times for flights. You should also go on Facebook and "like" all of the Space A terminals in your area, because they post their schedules 72 hours in advance. Watch their facebook page for trends. They post slides after flights depart to report how many seats were taken and the sign up time for the last passenger that got onto the flights.

If you are flying with the active duty member you can only sign up once they are on leave. You are then Category 3. Most summer space a seats are occupied by Category 3. Luckily, my husband was able to be approved for 30 days of leave. He wasn't planning on using all 30 days, but it is better to have them just in case.

You sign up by emailing each Space A terminal you are willing to fly out of. There are 4 within a 3 hour radius of our home so we signed up at all of those locations. You should also sign up for the return flight at that same time. Sign up as SOON as the active duty member is on leave, but check the leave papers! We signed up at midnight on the day his leave started, only to find out later that his leave didn't start until 8 am. Luckily, he was able to get his leave papers amended to start at midnight. A few hours really do make a big difference in sign up times. We used the app "Take a Hop" and it made the email sign up a little easier. You just input all of your information ahead of time and as soon as they are on leave you hit send and it formats the email and makes sure you have all of the required information.

After you sign up, I would suggest that you wait a few days before trying to get on a flight. We waited 5 days and still didn't get on until the 3rd flight out. Not making it on a flight can be discouraging, so it is sometimes better to let your name sit on the list for a few days and let the people before you clear out before you try to get on a flight. 

On the calendar and on the facebook page they will have a "roll call" time listed. All members of your family who are traveling must be there, "travel ready" at the time of roll call, which means, you have to have all of your bags ready to go and you cannot leave the terminal after they call you. So, you have to have any rental cars returned and you must be checked out of your hotels. You must be checked in before roll call. To check in you have to have the leave papers, passports, IDs and a copy of the sign up email with you. You have to be checked in before roll call, but not all members of your party have to be there to check in. They close down check ins at roll call and they don't always have a record of your email so you have to have that with you. Make sure that they mark in the correct sign up time, more on that when I talk about the return flight.

We wanted to fly out on a Monday or Tuesday so he went on leave the previous Wednesday. When we showed up for our flights on Monday there were 40 seats on the first flight and we almost got on, but they were short 3 seats for us, so we would have had to fly separately, which is not a good idea, because then I would have been bumped down to Category 5. We thought for sure that we would get on the Monday evening flight since there were more than 100 seats available, but unfortunately a lot more people showed up and there were many more duty passengers who have first priority and are considered Space Required. Luckily, we live 15 minutes from the airport. It is harder if you live a little ways from the airport, because you either have to make the trek home or find a hotel last minute. I did see that some people just slept at the airport, but again with kids that's not exactly practical.

The next day we saw on Facebook that the Tuesday flight only had 10 tentative seats and the roll call wasn't until 10:30 pm, which meant we wouldn't be flying out until past 1 in the morning. We hesitated, but felt good about trying again. Always try for a flight, because you never know if more seats will open up! We went and set our kids up with all of their devices and their nap mats and two of the three slept for a bit in the airport. It ended up that 40 seats were available. They will do an initial roll call and then they will say that there are still a number of duty passengers who haven't shown up. They usually have about a 10 - 20% no show rate, so more seats usually open up. They do another roll call an hour later. If you are within the next 20 people or so on the list then stick around. We didn't make the first roll call or the second. We made the third roll call about 15 - 20 minutes after the second roll call. Luckily the man working at the counter told me to stick around after the second roll call since we were the next name on the list, because we made it! They ended up having 60+ seats available even though it started out as 10 tentative. We flew on a 747 and there were plenty of extra seats so for the 5 of us we had 7 seats. They served breakfast and lunch and the flight attendants were very friendly and helpful.

We stayed in Germany for 2 weeks, so by the time we left we had been on the sign up list for 21 days. There were 3 flights going out of Ramstein the day we wanted to leave. We did not get called for the first 2 flights that had 20 seats on each of them, so we thought we would for sure be called for the flight to BWI that had 117 seats available. However, after they had called 60 people I started to get a little nervous that we weren't even on the roll call monitor yet, so I checked a list and noticed that they were calling people who had signed up on July 1st. We had signed up on June 18th. So, I sent my husband back to the counter and one of the servicemen working there said that the person who had checked us in had gotten the sign up time wrong, but that it shouldn't make a big deal, well after some nagging to get him to check again it turned out that he had recorded our sign up time as being July 18th, which hadn't even passed yet. So, had we not nagged we would not have gotten on the flight. We actually should have gotten on one of the earlier flights. So, make sure they have the correct sign up time in their system! Luckily, they hadn't given away all of their seats yet so we were able to get on their flight. If not there would have been one very angry mother of 3 boys stomping around their terminal. :) The flight was great and the kids all did really well, again there were extra seats so we had 6 seats for the 5 of us. We were pretty lucky in that the day we wanted to fly out there were 3 flights available.

The other big question I've gotten is how do you plan for lodging and transportation if you don't know when you're going to get there. We made our reservation for a hotel for Friday in Stuttgart and for the resort to start on Saturday and started trying to fly out on Monday. Just keep in mind when you can cancel things without having to pay a fee. Most places give you at least 3 days.

We made plans just in case we got there right away. We didn't want to make reservations for Tuesday through Thursday because we wouldn't have been able to cancel without a fee. So, we had a list of hotels and things we wanted to do if we had the extra days. When we found out Tuesday night that we had made a flight my husband quickly pulled out his phone and booked two nights at a hotel. So, we were good with lodging. We had made reservations for a rental car to start on Friday, but unfortunately you can't make last minute changes to your reservation online. So, we ended up checking with them when we got to Ramstein, but they didn't have any cars and most rental car companies on the base only rent cars to people stationed there on the base. So, we ended up using the train and taxis for 2 days, which was an adventure with 3 kids and 5 bags, but was do-able.

There is an Air Force Inn on the base at Ramstein, but it fills up fast! For the return flight we wanted to stay at the Air Force Inn, because it's right there across the street from the terminal, they have family apartments, and we were going to have to return our car there at the terminal. To book a room at the Air Force Inn you have to make it one night at a time and no more than 3 days prior to the day you want to stay. So, starting 3 days before the first day we were going to try to go home we called every morning to make a reservation. They didn't have rooms right away, but we called throughout the day and were able to reserve the rooms. You do have to check out each morning, because you have to be checked out in order to get on a flight. After the first night, we checked out and made sure we had rooms for the next two nights just in case. They put a hold on the room, but do not store your credit card information so as long as you check in by 6 pm you have a room, but if you get on a flight there is no cancellation fee. We ended up not needing those extra few nights. Also, as a note, my husband is in the Navy so when we saw the different facilities and amenities on the Air Force Base..I was impressed to say the least. If you do have to wait for a day or two in Ramstein, there is a huge shopping area, commissary and PX right across from the terminal.

I think I covered everything! I know some of the information is specific to Germany, but it is a popular hub for a lot of European Space A travel and I couldn't find a lot of detailed information on blogs before we left. All in all, I think Space A worked out great, because we had contingency plans and mostly because my husband had a good chunk of leave so that we weren't stressed about when we left or when we returned and we had some time to let our names sit on the sign up lists. You do have to be flexible and have to be well prepared to entertain your kids. There isn't much in the waiting area at BWI, but the terminal in Ramstein, Germany has a play area, lounge chairs and places to eat.

I will post later about the things we took that helped entertain the kids and make them more comfortable.

Don't be intimidated by Space A! It's fun, exciting, a little stressful, but the price is right! If you have any other questions let me know. Whew! Thanks for hanging in there until the end of this long post!


My family and I recently returned from a 2 week vacation to Europe. It was so much fun! There will be a few more posts about that trip, but I wanted to start off with my favorite dish we had in Germany.

Germans definitely know how to do breakfast. The first hotel we stayed at had a breakfast buffet with the most delicious rolls with meats and cheese. Amazing.

By the time we got to our third hotel we decided to save a little money and buy cereal and milk and eat most breakfasts in our hotel room. Well, one morning we decided to get breakfast in the town where we were staying, Garmisch-Partenkirchen. We headed to a cafe called Thron. It was a bakery and it had some delicious looking chocolates and treats as well. My husband ordered some pancakes called Kaiserschmarrn. We were a little hesitant to order them, because it said that it took 25 minutes to make and we had our 3 young kids and 25 minutes can be an eternity. So, we ordered other foods to hold them over. We are so glad we waited the 25 minutes. These pancakes were delicious. I looked them up when I got home and found out that they are Austrian Pancakes. They were crispy on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside. They had a similar taste to German Pancakes that are baked in the oven, but were a little different. They were cut up into pieces and sprinkled with powdered sugar and came with a side of apple puree.

So, when I got home I hit pinterest to see if I could find any recipes that could compare. I found this one on I tried it out and I thought it turned out great! I did not have any applesauce or apple puree, but I did have a jar of apple butter, which was more like apple sauce anyway. It was delicious. I think next time I will make sure that the outsides get a little more crispy, but other than that I thought it was a good recipe. Try it out and let me know what you think! Sorry the pictures are less than stellar again! I blame jet lag. 

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Cheesy Taco Buns

This was one of those recipes I pinned and was not sure if it would be any good. It seemed sort of lazy to me for some reason. So, the other day I had one of those days when I needed a lazy kind of meal. My husband was out of town and my kids don't appreciate fancy meals anyway, so Cheesy Taco Buns were on the menu!

I got the recipe: HERE on Centsless deals' website. You can read all of the nitty gritty details there, but here's a quick overview:

Brown up your ground beef and add taco seasoning, preferably in a cast iron skillet, because they're awesome.

Then you have to make a sauce with cream cheese and salsa. Unfortunately, we were all out of salsa, but I did have this taco sauce, which worked out well.

Then you have to get your Pillsbury Refrigerated Rolls. I used these:

Then you roll them out flat, like so:
Put a little dollop (I used that word because Sister #1 hates it) of the salsa/cream cheese mixture, add some meat and cheddar cheese.
Then pinch the dough together to make a cute little taco bundle and place it in our your cookie sheet, seam side down.
I just realized that the recipe said to brush the tops with butter. I didn't do that! Darn. Butter is always a great addition, but mine were still good without it.

Then you bake them for about 15 minutes! Easy Peasy!

Mmmmm..yum. Clearly, not at all authentic taco cuisine, but still a good meal. It was a big hit with the kids. I was kind of expecting that the leftovers wouldn't heat up very well, so I was pleasantly surprised when they did!

Try it out and let me know what you think!

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Teriyaki Salmon with Sriracha Cream Sauce

I recently found a recipe for Teriyaki Salmon with Sriracha Cream Sauce on Pinterest. It can be found: HERE.

Let me just start off by saying, I don't really like seafood. If someone makes it for me then I'll eat it, but I very rarely choose to make it or to order it at a restaurant. I am usually ok with salmon. I really like Giada's recipe for Salmon Fish Sticks which can be found: HERE. Ooh...and this one too, Cheesy Onion Baked Salmon found HERE. Anyway, I decided to try this Teriyaki recipe and I really liked it! My kids liked it too. Awhile ago, Sister #2's daughter told my son that salmon makes you smart and he pretty much takes everything she says as gospel, so he eats salmon really well. I wonder if she can talk to him about shrimp and broccoli too.

The recipe is pretty simple.  You have to marinate the salmon in a teriyaki sauce recipe listed on the link. The longer you marinate it, the better. I let it marinate for a couple of hours and it was good.
Then you have to make the Sriracha Cream Sauce. I thought it had a little bit of a kick, but not too spicy at all. You can add extra Sriracha afterwards.

I clearly have a hard time taking pictures of meals after they are all made. I think at that point I'm a little too excited to eat or something. So, for a pretty plated picture, head over to Damn Delicious' website. Again, here's the link: Teriyaki Salmon with Sriracha Cream Sauce.  It was really good and went well with rice and kimchi, but I'm Korean so most things are good with rice and kimchi in my opinion.

Try the recipe and let me know what you think!

Favorite Places in New York

A few weekends ago, a couple of my friends and I decided to take a trip up to New York City. We left Friday morning and came back late Saturday night. One of them had never been before and the other had been a couple of times. I am by no means an expert on New York, but I've been a couple of times and now have some favorite spots. So, this is my "tourist guide" to New York city.

We decided to ride the bus and I was a little hesitant, because...well I don't know why. I was just hesitant! I'm glad we decided to go with the bus though. We took Mega Bus and it left out of White Marsh. The crazy ladies I was with decided that we should take the 6:20 bus, which got us there around 930. I don't really have any complaints about the bus. The time seemed to go much faster, we didn't have to worry about fighting traffic ourselves, gas money, or parking once we got into the city. It lets you off right in the city. Now, taking it back to Baltimore was a little different. The stop is a little farther away from downtown, but still..not bad at all. Don't forget to bring layers. It gets a little cold in the bus. There are also USB outlets so that you can charge your phones at your seat.
We stayed at the Renaissance Hotel on Times Square and it was a great location and the room was huge compared to other hotel rooms I've seen in New York. We were able to drop our bags off there before we were able to get into our room and we left them there during the day on Saturday after we checked out.

After dropping off our bags we headed to my favorite pizza place of all time, Grimaldi's. It is a chain, but there really is nothing like eating pizza in Brooklyn under the Brooklyn Bridge. It. Is. Delicious. You want to get there right when it opens, because there is usually a line. We got there right around 1130 and were able to walk right in and be seated. Also, it's cash only, but they do have an ATM. 
Then we walked across the Brooklyn Bridge. It's always fun to people watch while walking across the bridge. Unfortunately it was pretty cloudy and misty that day, so we couldn't see the Statue of Liberty across the water. It was fun to see all of the locks couples have put on the bridge.

Once we got off the bridge we headed over to see the 9/11 memorial. You do have to get tickets to go see the memorial. They are free, but they ask for a small donation. You have to go to the museum to get tickets and then go over to the memorial. It took a little while to get into the actual memorial, because there is a line and security screening. It is still under construction, so I'm sure when that's all finished that it will be much faster. It was definitely worth seeing. The fountains they built are amazing. It is impossible to get a really good picture from ground level. They really have done a fantastic job.
After that we headed over to Chinatown and Little Italy to look around and to have cannoli! We like to go to Cafe Palermo. I'm actually not a huge fan of Cannoli. It's a little sweet for me. So, I had a lemon blueberry cheesecake and it was delicious! They are known for their cannolis though and I know Sister #4 is a big fan.
At that point we thought we were going to pass out from exhaustion and over eating! So, we headed back to the hotel to check into our room and freshen up a bit. The view from the room was so fun! After a little bit we headed down to Ellen's Stardust Diner. We decided not to go to a show this trip, so we figured we could get a little of the Broadway experience by going to Ellen's. It's a diner where a lot of Broadway hopefuls are the waiters and waitresses. So, they sing and perform throughout the night. I am NOT a fan of crowd interaction, but it was still super fun. The food was actually nothing to really write home about. It's diner food, but it was good and it was more for the experience anyway.

On Saturday morning we woke up early and headed to Central Park. I had never been before and I have to say that it is now one of my favorite spots in New York City. It was so fun to walk around at a little bit of slower pace than we had on Friday and to just enjoy the scenery. We could not figure out where everything was though, so luckily we found an awesome guide there who had a great map. So, if you see one of the guides ask them for a map! It was such a life saver. We really wanted to go on paddle boats on the lake, but they weren't open because it looked like it was going to rain.

Here were some of our favorites in Central Park:

The Alice in Wonderland statue:

Belvedere Castle was fun. It was small and you could go to the top where there is a fantastic view of the park.

This was the John Lennon Memorial.

We got to see a lot of different spots that show up in movies which was kind of fun. I kept thinking of that line from You've Got Mail, "It'd be a shame to miss New York in the Spring."

We ended our trip to Central Park by riding on the carousel. You're never too old to ride on a carousel.

After leaving Central Park we headed to look at the Plaza Hotel. I kept playing that movie, Big Business in my head! Then we walked down 5th avenue and looked at all of the ridiculously expensive things for sale. We walked through Tiffany's which was kind of fun. We went up to the floor with all of the engagement rings and dreamed a little bit. Then we walked over to Rockefeller Plaza and Radio City Music Hall.

After that we headed to Carnegie Deli for lunch. I have to admit that the first time I went to Carnegie Deli I was not really sure what the big deal was. So, we decided to try it again. I'm so glad we did because I really liked it. They have an amazing and huge Reuben sandwich for $27 and they add $3 to share it. We bought one and were able to split it between the three of us. We also split a giant pastrami knish. It was delicious. Also, GET THE CHEESECAKE. Delicious.

Then we headed to the Empire State Building. It ended up being a good time to go because it started to rain and we were inside during the storm and it cleared by the time we got up to the top. For those of you in the military, there is a discount so make sure you ask for that. The wait wasn't too bad. It probably took an hour and a half all together. We walked up and down the last 6 flights which cut down the wait a little. There a lot of people trying to sell fast pass tickets outside and we were told by the people inside that there is no such thing as a fast pass ticket, so it's best to just buy your tickets inside. I kept thinking of Elf!

Once we got out of the Empire State building we did a little bit of shopping and looking around there on 34th street. It started to storm again so we had to rush and find something to eat before getting our bags and heading to the bus. We were just a couple of blocks from Koreatown! I was so excited to find my people! There were a ton of restaurants that looked delicious, but we were in a little bit of a hurry so we went to a restaurant that was a little cafeteria style. It was really good. I want to go again the next time I go so that we can try a different restaurant.

After that we headed to the bus. We used the Subway a lot and got pretty good at it by the end. There was only once when we got pretty confused, but other than that we did pretty well! I saw a giant subway rat, so I figured my experience was complete.

The only other tips I can think of are to make sure you wear comfortable shoes, walking around is part of the experience. I wore my Reef flip flops and my feet weren't at all sore. My calves and thighs..well that's a different story. Also, I was so grateful for my portable charger for my iPhone. I use the Yubi, which is the only one I've tried that works with the 5s. I was also grateful for the New York Subway app. If you put the address into Google Maps on your phone and click public transportation it will switch you over to the Subway App and it was really helpful.

So, there you guide to New York City. It's always fun to visit, but then I like coming home and not living in a city. If you go, then let me know your favorite spots! Sister #4 is going in the next couple of weeks so I'm sure she'll post about her favorite spots as well!