Thank You 2019, Welcome 2020

2019 was a very special year for various reasons.  This is the Year that Isaac, my two-year old, going three, son really enjoyed Christmas.  Isaac’s first Christmas was in 2017 and while he was starting to walk at the time, he really did not understand what was going on. On 2018, I put a tiny Christmas tree on top of a table; Isaac was walking and running by his second Christmas and with safety in my mind, I opted for a small tree that was more a table ornament, than a tree. 

Christmas in 2019, however, was different for Isaac.  Isaac enjoyed it to the fullest.  Isaac and I went to Target to buy the Christmas Tree.  I had him help me choose the tree and as I loaded it on our cart I told him that he was a big boy now and that he would be able to take care of the tree.  Isaac nodded in consent.  We got some ornaments, paid for the tree and headed home to put it together.  Isaac helped me put the tree together.  He was just having a great time.  Christmas at home started early, we put the tree before Thanks giving.  To me, once November begins, it’s the season.

The Christmas tree was not elaborate.  I kept it simple, again, keeping my child in mind.  My boy is a very active child and very curious at that.  Once, we put the tree together and he saw the multicolor lights lit up, his facial expression turned into more joy as he started screaming wow!  He was just so happy.  He started calling the colors of each light, red, blue, green, yellow…  I just felt such a joy to see him so happy and enjoying what what’s going on. 

I also explained to him that Christmas is the celebration of the birth of baby Jesus.  That’s right, any time, is a good time for education.  With the tree up, his curiosity continued.  The first day the tree was up, he behaved nicely, just looking at the tree and passing by it back and forth.  As the days progressed, he started passing by the tree and poking the ornaments.  He then wanted to take the ornament-balls and play with them.  I explained to him the balls had to stay on the tree.  He then started throwing his toy-ball to the tree.   I reminded him of his consent to take good care of the tree.  In all, he was a little naughty with the tree but the important thing was that he was enjoying the season.  Eventually, he also learned to leave the tree alone and the tree survived the season.

In 2019 Isaac also did his first trip to the Bronx Zoo.  What a time he had with the animals, our favourite part so far (we did not get to see all the animals due to timing) was the children’s zoo where we got to feed the donkies, the llamas, goats, etc.  It was awesome. 

My husband, my child Isaac and I also traveled to the Dominican Republic, my native land.  This was another highlight for Isaac in 2019.  In the countryside, Isaac made numerous little friends.  I saw him running, playing, laughing and having fun as I had never seen him before.  This was Isaac’s second trip to DR.  His first trip was when he was about to turn three months old.  He then came back from the trip talking about all of his cousins and his brothers on my husband’s side, and how much fun he had.

Some other highlights for Isaac were: He went to the beach in The Dominican Republic. He went to The Grand Central Station (he loves trains and transportation).  He saw for the first time, the Christmas Tree at Rockefeller Plaza. Let me guess he loves to explore just like his mama.

Thank you God for guiding us in 2019. Thank you God for you are our guide in 2020 and always. Welcome 2020; with God we can do all things.

God Bless You & with love,

Querin

Casual

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IMG_4587 IMG_4591 IMG_4603 IMG_4605 IMG_4612 IMG_4613 The best view of New York City is not from New York City.  The best view of the City is from Boulevard East, a street along Weehawken, West New York,  and Guttenberg.  Even most Newyorkers do not know about, nor have seen NYC from this side.  However, some tour busses are starting to make their way to this side of the Hudson river to appreciate the view and capture it in pictures.  The most beautiful view of New York City is not from the Empire State observation deck.  It is from the Jersey side across the the Hudson.

Iron Bar In Time Square – New York York City

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I left work at around 11:30pm, Tuesday night, June 17th. I took my usual E train and as usual got off on 42nd and 8th Ave.  As usual, I then take the bus and go straight home to West New York.  But this time I did not go straight home. I was hungry and so I walked to Kodama sushi, my favorite sushi restaurant. Unfortunately (or fortunately I should say), Kodama sushi was already close. But I was hungry and determined to find a place where I could eat something healthy and delicious at the same time.

I know that as a healthy eater, eating close to your bedtime is not ideal and definitely not recomended.  I regularly try to have my last meal three to four hours before my bedtime, however not tonight. Tonight I was hungry and wanted to eat. Since Kodama sushi was closed, it’s not like I had many options at this hours of the night (it was past midnight), but then again, I was in New York City—the city that never sleeps. I stepped into Iron Bar. Many times before I have passed by this place, yet I had never attempted to go in, but tonight I did. They serve food until 2 am. Yes, I know we are into healthy eating and not eating very late, but sometimes we eat late.

What was so special to me about this place, was that as soon as I walked in, Pierro, the host was so naturally hospitable. I am very critical of hospitality as it is my field of expertise. Pierro handed me a menu; I took a look at the options. I noticed that among their selection of dishes, they had some salads and gourmet pizza with smoke salmon. I wanted to eat some fish (that’s why I had originally headed to Kodama sushi), but I definitely did not want to eat pizza, especially at this late hours. So I asked Pierro if they could do a salad for me with the smoke salmon.  Pierro very kindly asked me which salad did I want and he even suggested one of the options—the beet salad.

Once I decided to go with his suggestion, he then introduced me to Jason, the restaurant manager. He asked Jason if they could make a special order for me. Jason shared this was the first time they were making this change (the salmon is only used on the pizza with smoked salmon), however, he did not hesitate and immediately sought to make the special order—the beet salad with the smoked Salmon.  Jason then had a server assist me to a table. When I received my salad, I was not disappointed. They exceeded my expectations.  This is one of the best salads I’ve ever eaten.  I also enjoyed the ambience of Iron bar; it is very inviting. The décor is an open floor plan with tall windows; wide doors that make you feel the outdoor is part of the indoor, and high ceiling. On the bar side, it has a series of TVs aligned for sports fans.

Thank you to the team at Iron Bar for accommodating my needs, to Pierro in particular for giving me such a warm welcome when I walked into the place.  I for sure will be back.

Thank you,

Querin

The Rebirth Of The World Trade Center

 

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I pass by the 9/11 memorial site almost daily.  The museum opened its doors to the public a few weeks ago.  My mother had been wanting to go to the site, so we both went to the museum for the first time today.  It was a profound experience.  The museum is actually underground.  It is a story about the endurance, resilience, courage, rebirth and love of the American people.   God bless The United States of America.  God bless us all.

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Before arriving at the memorial museum, we made a quick stop at the Liberty Park (formerly known as Zuccoti park) and took pictures with the financial man statue.

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My Bicycle and I

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The summer is over and it’s time for autumn, but did I have a memorable summer time with my bicycle this past summer… I purchased my bicycle, a Giant Escape, last year (2012).  I had been wanting to change my workout and exercise routing and put some excitement to it, other than just hit the Gym every time.  So I opted for a good brand bicycle.  When I got my Giant, it was love at first ride.

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Riding my bicycle gave me a sense of freedom and empowerment.  I felt the wind caress me.  I heard the sound of the birds.  Every time I rode my bicycle, I was present.  I was in the moment.  The summer of 2012 and this past summer I rode it On and Thru the George Washington Bridge; this was an experience I will never forget.   I truly felt I could go anywhere on my bicycle.  It was a feeling I cannot describe.  Let’s just say that each time I rode it, I became in tune with my self, with my surroundings.  I also became more in touch with nature.  It was just my bicycle and I.

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I like photography and sometimes I would take my camera, with me and take random pictures of the scenery.

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I took pictures of the trees while lying down on a bench in the park. 

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In this amazing, beautiful and busy world, where routine sometimes tends to get the best of us, I urge you to find time for yourself, time to ride, time to jump, time to run, time to laugh, time to meditate, time to just be in tune with your self, and where you are completely present in the moment.

Don’t wait to accomplish something big to feel successful.  You are already successful.  Keep setting goals for yourself that keep you motivated and continue to challenge yourself, but know that success is a state of mind and you can create that state of mind.  When you create a state of mind in which you always feel successful, you will start attracting to your life all those other things that will help you continue to be successful

Thank you

Remembering September 11

I really wanted to publish this post before midnight, but my schedule did not permit.  So here is a recount of my day yesterday, a day we will never forget: Tuesday, September 11th.  As part of my daily routine, I’m waiting for the bus that will take me in to NYC.  The sky is bright, bleu and clear.  It’s a little cooler than in previous days, nevertheless it’s a beautiful day.  I hop on the bus; it rides along what I call the most beautiful street-Boulevard East in West New York, New Jersey, my town.  From afar, I can appreciate a view of the Freedom Tower standing tall.  I observe the Hudson River how calm it seems today, as if it too is paying a moment of silent for what took place 11 years ago.

Pictures taken while on the bus

We ride through the Lincoln tunnel and in New York City we arrive.  As it was expected, there was a lot of police activity everywhere in the city, yet it was more manageable moving around then last year, the 10th anniversary. I stroll the streets of NYC at least five days a week yet today it feels very different.  Of course, it is a special day.

I meet some firefighters.  They take a moment to pose for Querinexplores I want to thank the FDNY for always being ready to protect our great city and for always being willing to take a brief moment to pose for the cameras :).

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I meet Michele, she is a detective with NYPD.  She and her team were on a special operation during 911 called, operation Hercules.  Their job…to keep the city extra safe.

Then I meet Honschar.  As you can see, he is an artist who was filling the sidewalks with special phrases and quotes for this special day.

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You may find more about Honschar on his facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/pages/Honschar/358433244227879

Here she is, the Freedom Tower, up close. One World Trade Center will be her address once she is open for business.

Into the evening reflecting the patriotic colors of our great nation.  God Bless America!

Thank you!