Saturday, September 11, 2010


Living in New York City has proven to be an incredible experience. Everything is so different from what we know and feel familiar with. Life is more fast-paced, diversity is all around, and the opportunity to grow is everywhere.

One such opportunity presented itself to us today on the 9th anniversary of the September 11th attack on the World Trade Center right here in the city. Megan and I, for the first time since moving here, took time just to walk around Ground Zero, remember, and reflect on that tragic event. Being there in person makes all of it seem very real; not just a picture on a TV screen, but something that directly impacted the lives of so many who cased the grounds along side us tonight.

The vastness of the site is staggering. In the dark, it is a massive, gaping void that punctures the New York skyline. A black hole among a cluster of stars. There is something so unsettling about it, so out of place, like the feeling of a phantom limb. It's a space you know that should be filled, but refuses to be covered up. It is a deafening silence that drowns out the passing cars and the subway trains; the tired feet and the nervous whispers; the mournful trumpet call and the muffled sobs of those nearby.

But after reflecting on the pain of the place, we also marveled at the miracle of the human spirit and its ability to cope, to move on. The area now seems just as busy as any other in the city. People learn to cope. We heal, somehow, and make due with what life has given us. The fear subsides, and although it still lingers—especially in the moments when we confront it—we make the choice to keep living our lives anyway. It's incredible, really, when you take the time to think about it.

I use "we" as though I was there when it happened. I was far away, safe and sound, watching events unfold on a television set from the comfort of a high school classroom. I didn't understand the full import of what was happening at the time. And admittedly, I still don't, and don't think I ever will. But tonight, standing in the dark near ground zero, I think I caught a glimmer, the smallest sliver, of what 9/11 truly cost, and what it means today.

So here are my thoughts. Let's mourn. Let's remember what happened, remember the pain and the suffering of a nation stricken with grief. Remember the fear we all felt after the towers fell. And after all of that, let's celebrate life. Let's go on living our lives the best we can and let's not let that fear stop us from doing good. Let's fill up those parking meters when we can; let's pick up some trash on the subway car; let's volunteer at a shelter or in a classroom; let's for once just listen to what others have to tell us instead of arguing our point; and let's let a customer purchase a large shake and split it into two smalls, one chocolate and one vanilla (this last one happened to us tonight at McDonald's).

And let's remember what this great nation is all about:

E pluribus, unum.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Houston's Birthday!

So this post is a little late, but Houston had his 26th birthday on August 17th and we had such a fun day! When Houston and I celebrate, our favorite thing to do is to make no plans at all. We like to play it by ear and just do whatever we feel like. We have found that when we make plans, things often don't go as planned and then we are stressed out and that is no fun. So, when we finished at work we decided to go check out a store we had been hearing about called Uniqlo. This store is awesome, definitely a new favorite of ours. The store here in New York is apparently the only one in the states, so if you want to check it out come visit us and I will take you there. We did some shopping there and got Houston some new clothes, in which he looked very handsome. Then we decided to walk around and find a new restaurant where we could have dinner. We were in Soho, which is a great area for eating, shopping, exploring you name it. We love it down there. Anyway, we came across the cutest restaurant called Epistrophy; picture Anthropologie meets little Italian cafe. Beautiful. The atmosphere was so charming and the decor was fabulous. Also, I ordered some fantastic lasagna, which we ended up sharing because it was so yummy (Houston's chicken wasn't bad either). We loved this little place and we were glad we decided to be adventurous and find something new.

The inside of the restaurant. I love the exposed brick with the beautiful natural wood tables and the great windows.

Some of the decor.

Our cute little oil and vinegar.

Here was our dinner. I love those mismatched plates.

This was the check. I squealed when they brought it to us. Cutest check in the whole world.

After we ate we spent the rest of the night walking around Soho and stopping into any store that caught our eye. Mostly it was just nice to relax and talk and forget about everything else. We have so much fun together. I am so lucky. Love that man.

Happy Birthday Houston!