I'm a born and raised New Yorker. A native to this concrete jungle, if you will, and as such it is my duty to know and embrace all things NYC, right? Wrong. In fact, it's usually us "native NY'ers" that forget how great our city is in the first place! It's cliche, but we get caught up in the hustle & bustle of our everyday lives that we forget to take a minute to appreciate our hometown. Which is why when Catherine's invited me on a NYC Staycation, I gladly accepted the invite. Two days of fun and excitement in my own backyard, and what better way to fall back in love with my city than with an incredible group of friends by my side!
Looking to embrace the staycation life? Grab some of your closets pals, prep yourself for adventure and JUST HAVE FUN!
Snag some inspo from my Catherine's Staycation w. my blogger and IRl gal pals Ty of Gorgeous In Grey, Kelly of Kelly Augustine & Beck of Manfattan below..
I always imagined I'd have a picnic in the park in a stereotypical place like Hyde Park or at the edge of the Cliffs of Moher (been both places, but a picnic I did not have). So you can imagine my surprise when I realized that this simple and rewarding pastime could (and does) happen in NYC .. all. the time. Like, literally there were people picnic-ing all over the place. I mean, they didn't have a beautiful snapchat & instagram worthy picnic beautifully catered by Kerber Farms, but it seemed this "picnic in the park" thing was in fact a thing, and that I had been missing out on all the fun. I am so grateful to Catherine's for the lovely mid-day break they set up for us - not only was it delicious (cue the lobster rolls and apple cinnamon donuts!), but it was nice to just unplug, sit back and laugh with my friends.
Shorts | Top | Sandals
This look was perfect for our afternoon of picnic fun!
The lightweight denim short & peasant top made for a fun and casual look that was comfortable and on-trend! The shorts' waistband is partially elastic making these THE perfect short for sitting down (read: eating) at a picnic ;) These pieces are so versatile, I'll def be re-working these shorts and this blouse into plenty of other looks this sunmer!
Because what's a day without a selfie ;)
Kelly and I in our element, enjoying some refreshments and chit-chatting!
We even had a good, old-fashioned potato sack race! Where I 100% did NOT win!
After the picnic, potato sack races and delicious bites we headed out for our next surprise adventure!
The Catherine's crew had us scheduled for a NYC heli tour, and it was AH-MAZZZZZ-ING! If I'm being completely honest, I did get a little case of the nervous butterflies before we boarded, but it all worked itself out and in the end this was a really incredible experience. Not only did we check off a bucket list moment that I likely would have NEVER done in NYC, if at all, but I got to do it with my gal pals!Seeing NYC from a bird's eye perspective was such a special and beautiful moment for me. I got to see my city from above, something that I never even considered in the past, and the more we choppered over town, the more I realized out gigantic little island is more special than I could imagine!
Naturally we were STARVING after the fun adventures.. and our apple cinnamon doughnut overdose had worn off....so before we checked into the Ludlow hotel we popped into Katz's deli and had ourselves a stereotypical dining experience with a side of pastrami!
Then we were off to kick back and relax in our amazing rooms at the Ludlow Hotel before getting ready to hit the town for dinner at STK! Prior to dinner, we took some photos in our evening looks. This black label dress is EVERYTHNG you want in a grab & go polished piece & more! Comfortable and lightweight (are you seeing the theme here? Summer = light fabrics that don't make me sweat more than I already am!), this dress is also a great option for the woman who prefers her pieces to be a bit more modest and forgiving in fit.
Dress | Sandals
After a lovely dinner, filled with great conversation and lots of hearty laughter we all retreated to our cozy rooms at The Ludlow. And while I can't speak for my friends, I know I headed back to my room with a grateful heart. We had had a LONG day filled with so many bucket list moments, that I just couldn't help but lay my head down and blissfully fall asleep dreaming of the day's adventures. ZZZZZZZZZZZZ's all the way into the next day :)
Pants | Blouse/Poncho | Tank | Sunglasses
Knowing we were heading out early to enjoy the nice weather and take some more "very NYC" pictures, I chose to wear this Tahiti Poncho with the flat front white pants. I wanted a crisp, clean and summer-inspired ensemble and I knew with a fresh white pant and a pop of color or print in a blouse it would easily tie together effortlessly. The colors in this Tahiti poncho are so beautiful - I can't wait to re-style it with leggings/skirts/jean shorts and more all summer long!
After snapping some pics on the highline and in the streets of NYC, we spent the rest of the afternoon at the Aerie Ancient Baths. The baths were beautiful, serene and with limited spaces for each time session the experience was intimate enough where I could really relax and have an almost meditative experience.
*Photos by Lydia Hudgens & Christine Emilie*
It was on this trip, in the streets of my own city that I realized I have lived in NY my whole life, and had never done, or even thought about doing, some of the things I did during this staycation with Catherine's. I had the opportunity to see my city with a fresh pair of eyes, alongside some of my most adored friends, in really beautiful looks/outfits. I'll travel the world, I'll take it all in but I will always be a NY girl at heart. Thank you Catherine's for reminding me of that :)
**This post is sponsored by Catherine's , but opinions are my own**