Happy Monday, everyone! I hope your week is off to an awesome start.
Last week turned out to be quite the adventure-packed week with a ton of fun new experiences, so I thought I'd recap it all here. Keep reading below to see what I was up to, and hopefully get inspired for your own NYC adventures -- enjoy!
MONDAY, JULY 23RD
Monday is Bachelorette night (duh), but it's also Lara-Get-Your-Life-Together day in general. I successfully completed my routine of picking up my weekly groceries at Trader Joe's (see here for one of my grocery hauls), doing laundry, cleaning my room and making dinner, all while squeezing in our typical Bach viewing party / cheese and wine night. Successful night all around if you ask me.
TUESDAY, JULY 24TH
On Tuesday, the girls and I went to the Rooftop Cinema Club for the first time to watch one of my all-time favorite movies, Ferris Bueller's Day Off. If you haven't seen it yet, I'm seriously questioning whether or not you're human.
Overall, the experience was amazing -- we got to relax on lawn chairs, eat bottomless popcorn, and sip on movie-themed cocktails all night long, while perched atop a cute little midtown rooftop. They also give you headphones to listen to the movie, which is actually a brilliant idea because people were then free to mix, mingle and order food without disturbing those who were watching the film. All around an A+ evening. There's limited seating on the rooftop, so I'd grab your tickets before they sell out if you're thinking about seeing a film there later this Summer! They have everything from new hits to old classics.
WEDNESDAY, JULY 25TH
Wednesday was my day off amongst the crazy, so I spent it eating in and binge watching The Office. Typical, but quite soothing.
THURSDAY, JULY 26TH
It's Restaurant Week here in NYC, which means you can get some amazing deals at hot spots all over the city (for three whole weeks, not one, as the name might suggest). I took advantage of that on Thursday, which involved date night at Untitled at the Whitney. As a former Meatpacking District regular, I'd often walked by the museum without having gone in, and I had no idea the ground floor contained this cute little restaurant.
The venue itself was absolutely stunning, with floor-to-ceiling windows that made the space feel open and inviting, especially with the beautiful Summer weather filtering in from outside. The pre-fixe menu options were curated with care, and everything I tried was absolutely delicious. One of my favorite things about Restaurant Week is that it allows you to try new things that you might not try otherwise (whether due to price or just general I-Always-Order-The-Same-Thing syndrome, which I suffer from greatly). This time, I started with the Baby Lettuce Salad (which had the most incredible buttermilk dressing), the Crispy Duck Confit (because A) why not?! and B) it contained my all time fave Shishito peppers), and finally the Caramel Mousse for dessert (which literally melted in my mouth). I paired this all with a few Aperol Spritzes, which added to the Summer ambiance perfectly.
After dinner, we walked along the waterfront and enjoyed the sunset, which was the perfect ending to the night. If you're thinking about taking advantage of Restaurant Week (which again, I highly recommend), go online and book your faves early!
FRIDAY, JULY 27TH
We had some of our West Coast team members visit us in NY this week, which of course called for Happy Hour. After work, we all convened at our fave local wine bar Compagnie (which is literally right underneath our office) for some sips and charcuterie. You can never go wrong with the Cacio e Popcorn (covered in the most amazing black pepper and pecorino) or the chef-curated cheese & meat board, and the on-site sommeliers always have the best wine recs.
After Happy Hour, I jetted uptown to view some apartments (it was raining, and I was leaving free alcohol, so this was quite the feat). More to come on that later!
SATURDAY, JULY 28TH
The weather finally cleared up again on Saturday, so I tried to spend some more time outside. I allowed myself to sleep in, before getting up and heading out to some more apartment showings.
After that, I headed home for a mid-day Office binge-fest before getting ready for a night out. I had tickets to see Jon Batiste (you may know him from the Late Show with Stephen Colbert) at the brand new Pier 17 rooftop, and it was the perfect Summer night for an outdoor show.
This was the first performance to have taken place at the rooftop, so it was cool to get in at the ground level. Everything was put together really well, from the show lights and food/bar carts to the general aesthetic of the venue. There's also a sister bar on the ground level that is right out by the docks! If you need me this Summer, you can find me at Pier 17, cocktail and tacos in hand.
I had an early and jam-packed day planned for Sunday, so I called it a night right after the show.
SUNDAY, JULY 29TH
One of my friends recently celebrated a birthday, so my friend group planned a trip upstate to go rafting along the Delaware River (we rented through Kittatinny). I hadn't been tubing/rafting since college, so I was super excited to get back on the water!
The starting location was about a 2 hour drive outside of the City, so we all met up in the morning to road trip up there together. Cue collaborative playlist making and Dunkin' Donuts to go. Once we were finally there, it was a pretty easy process of signing wavers, shuttling to the start of the route, and picking up our life vests, oars and raft.
The route we went on lasted for about 5 hours, and it was the perfect mix of soaring over exciting rapids and floating around in calmer waters where we could hop off and swim for a bit. We even found a spot that we could cliff jump off of, which was a first for me! Hopefully you got to enjoy that little number on my Stories this weekend. All in all, it was the most relaxing + incredible way to spend the day (cellphone free, natch), and I'm already looking forward to doing it again. Preferably, with a floating cooler full of beer, cider and snacks.
We ended the night with a semi-spontaneous trip to the Sugar Factory for dinner and their famous Goblet drinks, which was a fun way to end the day and overall weekend (even though, it wasn't so much fun when I had to get up early for work this morning, slightly hungover).
That's it! I hope you enjoyed following along this week, and I'm excited to see what my new week has in store for me. I hope your week is just as exciting!
Happy almost-weekend, fam!
I spent the majority of last weekend watching movies, shopping, and aimlessly meandering around the city, which means I didn't snap too many photos. So I figured that in lieu of my typical Weekend Recap post, I'd share the what I picked up at Trader Joe's this week. I get a lot of questions about how I manage to cook dinners and lunches at home when I live in a city filled with endless amazing food options, so hopefully this will start to inspire your own home cooking, too!
Read on to see what I picked up this week:
Total for the week = $49.37
One of my favorite things about Trader Joe's is how they get new items in every week, so there's always something new to try! Pro Tip: In general, I tend to heavy-up in the freezer aisle so that I can stock up on items that won't go bad if I eat out more than usual during the week.
Some of my other staples from them include:
That's all from me! Leave a comment if you have any fave TJ's products or recipes to share, and have an amazing weekend!
I'm a little late this week, but it's better late than never... right?
I tried to keep this weekend pretty chill since it was following a basically 2-week long OOO spree, but I still managed to pack in a ton of fun + adventures in along with some downtime.
Being the end of a week that felt like a weekend, but also like a game of post-holiday catch up with work, I took Friday night off for some much needed me-time. I went grocery shopping when the Trader Joe's line wasn't insane (gotta love TJ's, but not on a Monday evening), took a stroll through the park, and cooked dinner at home. I followed this by re-starting The Office for the billionth time, and tbh it was the best decision I've ever made. I needed to rest up, because the next day was quite the adventure.
On Saturday, I got up bright and early to take the ferry out to New Jersey to see one of my BFFs, Alexis, who also happens to be a coworker (aren't they the best that way?!). I hadn't taken the ferry out to deep NJ before, so it was a fun and refreshing way to spend a Summer morning. If you're looking to take a trip from the city out to the shore, I took the Seastreak ferry.
When I got there, we were STARVING, mainly because Alexis insisted I waited to eat until I could try NJ's signature pork roll. I'm not sure how I would describe it, other than a very thin version of SPAM. It was good, but I wouldn't give up my baconeggncheese for it ;).
After that, we explored her favorite neighborhood haunts, including a stop by the Asbury Biergarten, which has the cutest little rooftop patio that was perfect for soaking up rays while knocking back a cold one. I highly recommend the Schofferhoffer, which is a delectable sparkling grapefruit beer that they have on tap.
After a TV / nap break, we headed to Lighthouse for some cool Summery treats. The Italian Ices looked amazing, but I opted for a classic mixed cone.
After taking the ferry home I was ready for bed (the last ferry leaves NJ around 7:30, but it was late so I didn't get back to the city until 9pm), but I decided to rally and see what my friends were up to. I ended the night bar hopping on the Upper East Side, which never disappoints.
After basically two weeks OOO, I was really starting to feel the Sunday Scaries, so I was looking forward to a chill Sunday to end my extended weekend.
I started off by walking to Strand Books, arguably the best bookstore in NYC. I had just finished the previous book I was reading (The Futures by Anna Pitoniak), so I was in the market for a new casual reading book. After scouring the discount racks outside (at $1-$5 you have to check!), I meandered around inside and settled upon Neon in Daylight by Hermione Hoby, which I've just started but am already quite enjoying. Can you tell I have a thing for books about people who change their lives by moving to NYC? I took my new book out to the park, and read while I laid out in the sun with a friend, which was exactly what I needed.
As Summer progresses in NYC, I have lots of exciting things planned including concerts, day trips and more! Stay tuned for my next adventures, and as always, leave a comment below if you have any recommendations or questions regarding things to do around the city :).
It's that time of the week again!
I'm back with a super exciting weekend recap, as I took a trip out to Provincetown, MA for my boss' beautiful wedding. It was an absolutely incredible weekend of partying, celebrating and exploring, and I'm excited to share my adventures with you all. Let's dive in.
This weekend recap starts one day early, as the entire office left on Thursday to head out to P-Town. We took an Amtrak train out to Boston around lunchtime, and were lucky enough to snatch a table in the café car. Hello, dreams of working on a scenic train route whilst heading off to an even more scenic beach locale, where I could then work by the pool/ocean! Although the train ride was long, I really enjoyed getting that old American experience (with food and alcohol, natch).
When we finally arrived in Boston, I could not believe how beautiful the city was! I had an idea of what New England looked like in my head from movies and the like, but I had never actually seen much of it in person. I quickly became obsessed with the mix of modern and old-town architecture, as well as the overall culture of coastal towns.
However, what I gained in cultural exposure and experience I unfortunately lost in personal belongings... while waiting for our ride to P-Town, we decided to stop at a Shake Shack nearby. I'm a HUGE shake shack fan (though it'll never be better than Burgerville, for all my PNW'ers out there), so I was excited when we decided to stop by. Somehow, I set my wallet down while I was in the bathroom, and it was stolen shortly thereafter. FYI: suddenly becoming ID-less and money-less at the start of a vacation is not fun. 0/10, I do not recommend it. This is the second time in about a year that I've had my purse/wallet stolen, and while replacing all of my cards and belongings is expensive and incredibly frustrating (especially over a holiday weekend), I'm trying to keep a positive mind frame about everything. Thank God for Venmo, forgiving bartenders and good friends!
Once we made it into Provincetown, we arrived at the cutest little ocean-side hotel, Surfside Hotel and Suites. It has its own private beach, a pool, and the cutest beachy aesthetic ever (not to mention a few of my favorite things -- free breakfast and pool-side margarita service). The men who ran the front desk were the sweetest ever, and made us cocktails until the hotel's bar closed down for the night. Needless to say, after a day of travel and wallet-losing, I was ready to pour some back and hit the hay.
On Friday, I started the day off lounging by the pool, getting some color and working by the water. I've now decided it's my life goal to figure out how I can do this all the time -- traveling and working by pools and oceans full-time sounds a lot like how I want to live my life. Anyone have any leads here?
For lunch, the team had an off-site outing at Pepe's Wharf, an adorable waterfront restaurant that was legit Instagram aesthetic goals. We sat right by the water, sipping tropical cocktails (although basic, I highly recommend the Strawberry Daiquiri) and catching up. I felt like I had to get at least one Lobster Roll while in MA, so I wasted no time and got one here. It was SO good, and was of course the perfect first meal in P-Town. After lunch, we all went out on the beach to talk about our goals + desires for the rest of the year.
We then headed back to the hotel to get ready for the rehearsal dinner, which took place that night at the historic Provincetown Inn. I wore the above matching set from Necessary Clothing, which if you follow me on Instagram, you'll remember is a fave that I also wore for my birthday this year. They're one of my absolute fave places to shop for occasion outfits (and everyday outfits too, tbh).
The evening was absolutely beautiful -- the weather was perfect, the food was delicious (a traditional North East BBQ, featuring decadent chicken wings, potato salad, lobster rolls and more), and the open bar was flowing all night with Summery drinks. We even played some good ol' rounds of bingo and corn hole, which I can never say "no" to! Overall, it was a great night of celebrating love with some amazing friends + coworkers.
Saturday was wedding day (finally!), but we also had some extra time during the day to explore more of the area, which was great. We started the day off by the pool once again (how could you not?!), and then headed off to scout out a place for brunch. We started at the cutest rooftop spot Spindler's for some tiki-themed cocktails, and then walked over to a Mexican-type eatery called Yolqueria, where I had some amazing chicken & french toast. They also had the STRONGEST Spicy Paloma of my life, which I tried to soak up with one of their fresh-made cinnamon rolls. Life is all about balance, amiright?
We had some spare time to kill before getting ready for the ceremony, so we headed out to the beach for some sunshine + sand. There's nothing like laying out with the seemingly endless ocean a foot away from you, sand between your toes. Bonus points if you have a great cocktail in hand, too.
The wedding ceremony, which also took place at the Provincetown Inn, was absolutely beautiful. The bride and groom were stunning, the backdrop was insane, and the ambiance was incredible. I always get teary-eyed at weddings, and of course, this one was no exception. It's so heartwarming witnessing so much love shared between two people, from their subtle gestures of intimacy, to the way they looked at each other with excitement while promising a forever together. It makes me that much more excited for my special day sometime down the road! For my look, I wanted something that was breezy and light, so I opted for this flattering H&M slit dress. It comes in a few colors, and was only $25 (I also had a coupon!), so it was a total no-brainer.
After the ceremony, it was of course time for even more celebrations. We started with well-appointed appetizers ahead of the speeches, and then settled into dinner (the steak was INSANE) ahead of the traditional first dances before the entire venue took over the dance floor. It was such a great time, making some amazing memories with some amazing people.
Once that venue died down, it was time for the after party! They even had "party trollies" to transport everyone from the ceremony to the next stop, which was a fun little dive bar on the water called Pied Bar. They had a pool table, dancing, endless drinks, and of course, pizza for all. It was absolutely amazing, and the perfect night cap to an incredible day and weekend in general.
Sunday was mainly a travel day for me, but I'm also gearing up for a week of remote work as our CEO and her new hubby are out on their honeymoon. I'm excited to take some time to explore and work from different parts of the city, meet new people, and squeeze in some Independence Day celebrations with friends. If anyone has any recommendations for fun spots to work/hang at during the week in or around NYC, let a girl know in the comments below! I'm all about a great coffee spot, pool, bar, etc..
That's it for now! Thanks for following along all weekend on IG and IG Stories, and for reading this post if you've made it this far. I'm excited to continue sharing my adventures with you all, so stay tuned for another post next week!