Thursday, December 29, 2011

Official New Yorkers

Now, here's a story for you. How we earned our shirts.
Too bad they don't actually give you one after wasting so much time at the DMV. Haha. So obviously New York has a billion too many rules. And exchanging an out-of-state license is no exception.

We had to have several documents proving our names and birthdays. You'd think that's actually easy, and for Marcus it was. The fact that neither my birth certificate or social security card say Hardy really confused the lady processing my application. There were no problems with the two previous people I talked to, but for some reason, she couldn't figure out what was going on with my paperwork. The funny part is that we had gotten everything ready according to the online requirements, but it still confused that lady. Plus, online it said it was like fifty dollars cheaper.

So that lady kept crossing out Page and Hardy all over the place. She thought the guy who'd helped me prepare at the previous window was crazy (but he'd done it all right!), and she kept telling me that I couldn't change my name and just make a maiden name my middle name without going to court... even though my social and Utah drivers license say everything correctly. She'd say it all out loud right and then do something different. Weird.

After she put in my address and name (with Hardy), she said she was then going to do the name change. I had to quickly stop her, assuring her that was correct. She was going to flip everything back to Page! I don't know what she was doing. So she just looked at it and gave up I guess since she'd done it all backwards (of how the first guy had put it together).

And when she finally decided everything was finished, she realized she hadn't done my voting registration or organ donation. So she was going to do another transaction. But then the voting part printed, so I guess she had done it. ??? I had seen a sign about signing up to be an organ donor, so I decided to just do it online. She was just too confused :) So I got my temporary NY license. Crazy!

Now we can legally join this picture of New York.
But don't worry, I (we) do not plan on using my (our) new NY license(s) to drive in the crazy traffic out here! I'll just be a pedestrian here and drive in other states :)
Aww, look at my cute little New Yorkers
So Marcus decided it was finally time to get a haircut. His hair was getting a little crazy, and I think he decided the beard was just too much. So I chopped it all off. And there was so much hair everywhere that he decided to...

Vacuum it up
And he decided to try a new facial hair look
A new look for the newest New Yorker

Lunch with the Starrs

Marcus was pretty excited when he heard that his buddy from the MPS was in town for Christmas. Scott, his wife Lena, and their son Scotty were visiting family for Christmas, and they were in NYC for a show. So we had lunch together (of course it was pizza at Mariellas) with the Starrs.

Little Scotty
I think he was just a couple weeks old the last time we saw him!
Marcus with his eyes closed and Scott squinting in the sun :)
After lunch, the Starrs were headed off for some quick pictures at Times Square. We had two destinations planned as well.
1. Madison Square Garden
We're getting pumped up
And we may have picked a game we'd like to go to... Marcus wants to see Jimmer. Haha.
This picture leads to our second destination. Notice my coldness, despite the cute argyle sweater from Park City. Haha.
I love Macys here. It's so huge. And amazing. With tons of Christmas stuff! And everything I could possibly want or need... including... jackets!
I spent awhile debating which one I really wanted. And if I really wanted one. And if I should actually buy one. ...but they were 60% off...and all New Yorkers have them... Oh, I did it, and just a few days of staying ridiculously warm and shielded from the wind, good idea!

See how happy and warm I am :)
It's even easier to enjoy living in New York City when you have a nice, warm coat. And I think Marcus likes it better when I'm happy in my nice, warm coat too :)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Our Extended Christmas

Since we flew out to New York, we could only take so much with us from Phoenix. Obviously we had pushed the limits anyway, but my mom decided to mail our Christmas presents to our apartment since they wouldn't fit in our suitcases with the rest. Since it was a holiday, the mail was a little slower, and we got our presents today. Of course we didn't waste any time opening them, and some of these pictures are pretty good.

Thanks Mom and Dad!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Our First Christmas in NYC

I'm sure the whole picture overload on this blog will get old fast, but it's the best way I've found to share what we're up to-- especially while Marcus battles with the wifi connection for Skype and other video chats. But I had to post about Christmas. And then we can compare future years and see what traditions we've made :)

For breakfast on Christmas Eve, we made Jiffy's. Nothing special, but I did put them in cute Christmas tins and arrange them like a tree. A for effort :)
It was such a beautiful day outside. Obviously this first Christmas is not going to be a white Christmas. But it's nice to ease into NY weather instead of being dropped in on the crazy frozen winds.
I decided to first clean up a little more of our mess. Not too much though since it was a holiday :)
We spent the afternoon in Manhattan. We went to go see the new Sherlock Holmes movie. We're big fans :) Seeing movies here is definitely more special occasions since they're not cheap. But this one was so worth it! And there are some great movies coming out, including The Dark Knight Rises and The Hobbit.

Marcus was really hungry when we got back from the movie, so we had our little appetizers. Crackers and a cheese ball.
And then the dinner preparations began. We wanted to so some traditional foods, and the Hardys usually have clam chowder. I was not too big on that idea, so we compromised. We were going to make soup. Marcus made bread bowls from scratch!
He was a little nervous about them because the rising was going as well as he'd hoped.
And I made Cozette's recipe for potato soup. We make a great team :)
All smiles for the perfect bread bowls
Look how pretty it is! It was really good too!
And later we did make some cookies for dessert using special swirled chocolate chips. They turned out perfect. I'm really liking a gas stove and oven! So much better than our crazy ones in Provo!
Marcus' family opens their presents on Christmas Eve. My family doesn't. Just PJs. So after lots of pleading, I gave in and let Marcus start with a couple Christmas Eve presents. We opened our ones to each other.
I gave Marcus a gyropter, that he'd picked out at BBB awhile ago, a picture frame for his desk at work, and a religious/inspirational/patriotic plaque.
Marcus apparently wanted to do something I couldn't guess this year, since usually I can always figure out what he got me :) He pulled out a little blue box...
...with blue diamond earrings. He did lots of research and got them during a Black Friday sale. I guess Marcus really is a keeper :)
Of course, Marcus wanted to try out his gyropter. And the kitty did not approve. They had a good face off. She even swipped at it a few times.
Technically we also opened a present from my family. They had sent two gifts in the mail, which will probably arrive Tuesday. But we had sent the Blu Ray player on the moving truck, which has conveniently been here all week. So we broke it in on Christmas Eve with some Potter. And it looked good!
It was a very simple Christmas Eve, but it was really nice.
We woke up on Christmas with enough time to open presents before church. Chicago had been so patient-- we gave her hers first. Naturally it was a cat toy with feathers. (We think we left her chicken toys in Arizona.)
She started playing with them before we even got the bow off :)
And Chicago gave Marcus his present too-- more jeans! He's only been complaining about having so few pairs for over a year, since I stole his last ones and made the quilt.
He was really excited.
The cat finally discovered the Christmas tree after attacking the bow on her toys. She pulled that one off the tree and tried to pounce on it too.
We had fun opening presents from Marcus' family, G/G Hardy, and Nana. We received some really great books, games, gadgets, scarves, gift cards, socks, and movies. Basically we were spoiled rotten. It was worth carting it all through the airport like crazy people. Haha.
This isn't the best picture, but I tried to get one on my phone before we left for church. Marcus looked very snazzy in his green suit and red tie, and I wore my new shirt and sweater from Mimi, new warm tights from the Hardys, and my pretty blue diamond earrings.
We got back from church before noon, and it was omlette time! Another tradition we definitely had to keep.
Marcus studied the art of Grandpa's omlette making while in Arizona, and these were really amazing!
We spent the rest of the afternoon relaxing. No unpacking. No cleaning. I read and blogged. Marcus figured out how to set up the TV and fought with the Internet. And the cat slept. She slept on my lap. Under my chair. In the bed. On the bean bag. Basically everywhere. We talked to family via Skype. We ate too much. Listened to Christmas music on Pandora using our new sound system. Great times.

As we prepared dinner, we put on one of Marcus' new movies, Despicable Me. Definitely a favorite. Marcus loves those minions :)
You can almost see our meal in this picture. Marcus used the broiler to make some steaks. And I made mashed potatoes and a salad. I thought it was pretty good :)
And instead of making a dessert, we decided to buy some cupcakes at Crumbs. I think those are my favorite. I had a peppermint hot chocolate cupcake, and Marcus had red velvet. I was going to quote Florian from Cupcake Wars about how good they were, but then we realized all the great quotes are negative. And these are the best!
It was a sweet end to a fun holiday. We hope you had a great Christmas as well!