Friday, December 25, 2015

Christmas with Family and Friends

This year, our Christmas celebration was a bit unusual (in a good way). My friend from London came over to visit me and spend some time in New York. I suggested that she come with me to Philadelphia to spend Christmas with my family. 

In prior years, we would usually go to my aunt and uncle's house. They would have a big celebration for our families and friends. This year, however, their kids were spanning Christmas in New York, so they decided to spend Christmas at my parents'.

Living in New York, I don't get to experience the real Christmas spirit. That is why going to my parents' house is always an exciting experience for me as I get to see the true spirit of Christmas. My mom was in charge of Christmas decorations and cooking. When we came, the house was flawless. The whole living room was covered in lights and Christmas decoration, and of course in the center of it all stood the most beautiful Christmas tree. This home never feels more like home as it does on Christmas.










Friday, November 27, 2015

Thanksgiving Day 2015

As always this holiday crept up on us unexpectedly. Every day of our lives is filled with ups and downs, happiness and sadness, joy and disappointment. And every day we should be grateful for each of those emotions and experiences as they lead us to becoming stronger, better, wiser. On this day it is especially important to take a step back and think of all the things we can be thankful for. I am very thankful for each moment I experience with the people around me. My parents, my friends, my coworkers, people I meet for a mere minute at coffee shops - all of you create those special moments which fill my life and make it an incredible one. Thank you very much, everyone! 

And here's a little photo session from this day..











Friday, November 13, 2015

The Delancey

Just a fun night out at the Delancey on Lower East Side, NYC; wanted to share my outfit. 



Sunday, November 8, 2015

Mom's Bithday and Trip to Virginia

On my mom's birthday itself, our plan was a trip to Virginia to see the Luray Caverns and driving through the Skyline Drive. My mom had been to both before and she absolutely loved it the first time she went there with her girlfriends; that is why this, for her birthday, she wanted to take my stepdad and me to those places. We got up bright and early in the morning, brushed out teeth, threw on comfortable clothes and left for our adventure. The first stop, of course, was Starbucks on one of the Service Areas en route. After fueling up on coffee and pastry, we took the course to our final destination. 



The second we got to the Caverns, it became very clear why my mom wanted to bring us there so much. The place was absolutely mesmerizing! First, we walked around the property, which included an old farm and a couple of tiny but interesting museums; and after the area was well-explored, we headed for the Caverns themselves. Amazing!








And after the Caverns, we got into the car and drove straight to the Skyline Drive. 


The plan was to have a picnic outside. However, as we started setting up the table and building the fire, we realized that it was way to cold outside, so we moved our picnic into the car and continued there.



Saturday, November 7, 2015

To-Kai

This year the plan for my mom's birthday was a three-day celebration filled with different events and activities. Since her birthday fell on a Sunday, I took the following Monday off just so we could relax and not rush our celebration. On Saturday, we had a girls-only party at To-Kai, an Asian fusion restaurant in the Russian area of Philadelphia. I had heard a lot about this place as it became one of the first choices for all outings and holidays; however, I myself had not been there before my mom's birthday party. 
This place is definitely a worthy option to have, with its beautiful decor and delicious menu. We had a truly amazing time, taking, laughing, catching up after a long time of not having seen each other.
After the 'opening night' at To-Kai, we had big plans for the rest of the weekend, but the details are to come in the next post.




Sunday, October 18, 2015

The Russian Experience: Russian Samovar

The third Russian stop was another Russian restaurant on 53rd street in Manhattan. Located right across from the Russian Vodka Room, the Russian Samovar is a true, worthy competitor. So far, this place is my favorite it regards to their food, service and ambiance. 








Saturday, October 17, 2015

The Russian Experience: Russian Vodka Room

The second Russian experience stop was the Russian Vodka Room, a Russian restaurant and piano bar on 53rd street in Manhattan. I had been to this place twice before, both times on dates (with different guys). I can see how this place can be a good date spot - it's dark, with a cool relaxing atmosphere, and amazing drinks. 

This time I came here with my roommate, and while everything was as great as it usually is here, we were not impressed by their food. It was just ok, nothing special. Except for the desserts, their desserts were indeed exceptional. 



Monday, October 12, 2015

Beautiful Weekend

Finally, I got a weekend with no plans and beautiful weather outside. What better way to spend a weekend than walk around through Manhattan, stopping in various cafes and coffee shops, shopping and sipping wine with a friend And since my plan was to walk as much as I can, I opted out for this comfy outfit.