Monday, June 30, 2014

Confessions of a Night Owl

I have a love hate-relationship with my snooze button. The minute my phone starts playing my annoyingly loud, cringe-inducing alarm in the morning, I practically punch my snooze button in annoyance. I hit my snooze again when the alarm goes off nine minutes later. And then I hit it again, and again, and again, until I finally drag myself out of bed.

Half of the problem is that I'm simply not a morning person. No matter how many cups of coffee I drink or how much cold water I splash on my face, I still feel like a zombie until about noon. The other half of my "snooze button problem" is that I have trouble going to bed at a decent time. I may be tired and groggy all day, but as bedtime approaches I inevitably get a burst of energy. Suddenly there are a million-and-a-half things I would rather do than go to bed, and those things need to be done right then.

So, here are 10 things I typically do late at night when I should be sleeping:

1. Organize my room. I rarely feel like cleaning, so when the urge starts in the wee hours of the night, I'm obviously doing myself a favor by tidying up. Right?

2. Watch Netflix. Actually, binge-watch Netflix. While stuffing my face with some sort of homemade Mexican food.

3. Skype with my boyfriend. This one is a bit more justified, but our Skype sessions tend to be hours long. Some even involve watching movies. (We only Skype when we're apart in the summer. During the school year, we do the most random things at night... like make up trivia games or walk 20 minutes to get tea).

4. Order food. Why do Chinese takeout and buffalo wing cravings hit the hardest anytime after 11 p.m.?

5. Read books. I've always been a little bookworm, but I haven't had much time to read lately. The inspiration to start reading again always kicks in, without fail, after the sun sets.

6. Treat myself to a full-blown manicure, which especially delays my sleep schedule because crawling into bed with wet nails is a pretty impossible task.

7. Start a blog. True story.

8. Start a DIY project. If I don't start at midnight, it may never get done!

9. Go through every single one of the 1,200 pictures on my phone.

10. Stare at the ceiling. Plain white walls are never as entertaining as when you're supposed to be sleeping.

Friday, June 27, 2014

Weekly Highlights

The highlight of my past week was definitely my mom’s visit from Thursday to Sunday. We jam-packed each day with restaurants and events, including an amazing Broadway show, Jennifer Lopez concert in Central Park, frozen hot chocolate at Serendipity, and people watching for hours in Times Square. Cramming into my minuscule dorm room every night only intensified the NYC experience. I learned that taking on New York is less intimidating and more exciting with my mom by my side.

Trying the frozen hot chocolate at Serendipity 3 in the Upper East Side.

Little Italy never disappoints. I got veal parmesan and pasta!

Guy Fieri's restaurant near Times Square was touristy, but delicious. The garlic fries were delicious!

My mom and I saw JLo perform as part of Good Morning America's Summer Concert Series. The concert began at around 7 a.m. in Central Park, so we were out the door and on the subway by 4 a.m to wait in line. Ugh! (Sorry for the blurry picture)

Bagels and Lox from Europa Cafe: Arguably my favorite breakfast in NYC

My mom and I saw The Cripple of Inishmaan on Broadway. Daniel Radcliffe was amazing!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

My Favorite YouTube Channels

I've always been a huge YouTube junkie. Ever since middle school, I've turned to YouTube for anything from makeup advice to song lyric compilations (and the occasional Fred video... I had great taste in middle school). The website is undeniably addicting. I could start watching a smoothie recipe and end up still glued to my computer an hour later watching Jimmy Kimmel videos.

My favorite YouTubers change pretty much every week, but I have a solid list of accounts I've been following for a quite a while now. Here are some of my favorites...

Ingrid Nilsen - missglamorazzi  

I've been watching Ingrid for years now! She was originally a fashion/beauty guru but started doing recipe, lifestyle, and DIY videos, too. Her personality is so quirky and fun. You can tell she puts a lot of work into her videos.

The Saccone Jolys- SACCONEJOLYs 

The SacconeJoly's have uploaded a YouTube vlog every day for more than four years. During that time, Jonathan and Anna (the vloggers) got married, had two kids, and very recently moved from Ireland to London. Their simple life never fails to entertain me, and little Emilia and baby Eduardo (and their six dogs) are adorable! Anna also has her own YouTube channel and fashion/beauty/lifestyle blog,

Zoe - Zoella

Zoe is my one of my latest YouTube discoveries, even though she's been popular for years (with over 5 million subscribers!). She's known for her beauty and fashion videos, but I especially like her fun lifestyle videos and helpful advice videos. You can tell she's very open and honest to her viewers.

Nick Pitera- goonieman86

If you enjoy singing videos, you have to check out Nick Pitera. His character voices are flawless. My favorite is the One Man Disney Movie... I still don't understand how he can nail the voices of Disney princes, princesses, and villains.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Energy of NYC

I'm determined to take advantage of New York City as much as possible this summer. I started to keep a continuously growing bucket list of things I wanted to do, but that list is now overwhelmingly long. No matter how much time I spend here, I don't think I'll ever cross all of the restaurants, shops, attractions, Broadway shows, or places off of my list. I just don't have the time or money to explore all that the city has to offer.

Fortunately, I have been able to cross a few items off of my list in the month I've been here. I did most of the typical touristy stuff (Times Square, a Broadway show, the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, the Metropolitan Museum of Art) and have started exploring a little deeper (Little Italy, Soho, Central Park, Chelsea). Living here for a month doesn't make me an NYC expert by any means, but I thought I'd share some of my experiences and what I've picked up about life and tourism in the Big Apple.

I'll start off with the basics: the people and the atmosphere.

New York City has a certain energy that I find difficult to describe. There's a general sense of hope and excitement, and a very potent feeling that anything is possible. The fast-paced lifestyle is invigorating and fresh. After being here a month, though, the excitement has started to fade with every late subway, every crowded sidewalk, and every sun-blocking skyscraper.

I can easily see how the city can be overwhelming; you cross so many people every day that you start to blend in. Escaping the crowds is almost impossible in Manhattan. Coming from a small Midwestern town that was deserted by 10 p.m. every night, I wasn't too fond of this aspect of NYC when I first came here. However, I've learned to love the energy and excitement (in small doses), and now I feel like my hometown will be extremely boring when I return for a couple of weeks in August.

On to the people. New Yorkers have a reputation for being impatient, rude, and hurried. I've found this stereotype somewhat, but not entirely, true. Everyone always walks absurdly fast, crossing the intersections before the walking sign even turns green. Most people keep to themselves- no small talk on the subways. Part of the apparent hostility is probably due to the sheer amount of people in the city; everyone wants some degree of privacy on their commute.

On a more positive note, I've noticed that New Yorkers are usually willing to help. They may get annoyed when you stop in the middle of a busy sidewalk to take a picture of a skyscraper, but they will likely be happy to give you directions to the nearest subway station. I'm also constantly amazed by the amount of diversity here. The sheer amount of different languages I’ve heard and clothing I’ve seen is almost dizzying. In a city of millions, I find it refreshing that nobody looks and acts exactly the same.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Jalapeño Popper Grilled Cheese

Living on my own lends itself to extremely simple dinners. Since I'm usually cooking only for myself, I just don't want to spend the time or money preparing an elaborate meal. Grilled cheese is always a favorite of mine, but I can only eat so much melted American cheese on whole wheat bread without getting tired of it.

After some googling and Pinterest-ing, I came upon this recipe for jalapeño popper grilled cheese. I knew I had to make it for dinner that night! I went to the grocery store and bought  pickled jalapeños, cheddar cheese slices, and cream cheese. After combining everything between two pieces of wheat bread, I headed to the kitchen to fry it up.

My mouth is watering just looking at these pictures. This is definitely going to be one of my go-to recipes for a simple dinner!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

My "Currently" List

I thought I'd kick things off with a "currently" list that I saw floating around Pinterest (aka my procrastination destination). Here's what I'm currently...

Watching: "The Vampire Diaries" on Netflix. It's my guilty pleasure!

Reading: "Paper Towns" by John Green, inspired by all the hype surrounding "The Fault in Our Stars" right now.

Listening: I'm a big country fan, and Luke Bryan's "Play It Again" has been on repeat lately.
Eating: I'm living in a college dorm with a kitchen in New York City this summer, so I've eaten my fair share of quesadillas and grilled cheese.  I love having visitors, though- it's an excuse to go out and enjoy all the delicious food in the city! I'm pretty partial to gyros from the food vendors and pasta from Little Italy.

Drinking: Coffee and water.

Enjoying: My awesome internship with a publishing company! Also, I love exploring NYC. You can never run out of things to do here.

Wanting: A visit from my friends, family, or boyfriend. I'm meeting people here in the city, but familiar faces are always comforting.

Wearing: Lots of dresses and pencil skirts to work, and sweatpants in my dorm room!


Welcome to Meet Me in Midtown!

I'm Nicole, a college student studying magazine journalism in New York. You can read more about me here.

I've always associated summer with new things - following a new schedule, traveling to new places, starting new jobs. I typically shy away from change, but I can't seem to avoid breaking my routine this summer. In the spirit of being adventurous, I decided now was the perfect time to start my own blog.

Thanks for visiting! Check back for more about lifestyle, DIY/decor/fashion inspiration, travel, and college.