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What I've Been Up To Lately (Spoiler: Packing!)

Date: March 16, 2016 at 10:09 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 37

Hello! Do you remember me?!

A few weeks ago, I ran into some big-time blog issues. Turns out, for the past six years, I haven’t been properly resizing my photos, and I basically blew up my server. My blog is now the size of the entire NSA archives. It’s still a work in progress (one I am ill-equipped to handle myself), but in the meantime, it’s been an active few weeks! Here’s what I’ve been up to…

Make nachos, not war! (Hers says "So fetch.")

Make nachos, not war! (Hers says “So fetch.”)

I saw Hamilton. Though I never doubted it for a second, the show absolutely surpasses the hype.

It is an unreal piece of groundbreaking musical theater. I don’t know where Broadway will go from here. The bar has been raised to ridiculous heights. Every member of the cast is so talented. There’s no dialogue in the entire nearly 3-hour show — it’s all singing, which makes for a physically and emotionally demanding show.

Without further adoring praise, a few snapshots from the very magical evening…

Outside the Richard Rodgers Theater. No witty caption.

Outside the Richard Rodgers Theater. No witty caption.

The view from my seat. Take note of the bottom right corner.

The view from my seat. Take note of the bottom right corner.

Iconic and shit.

Iconic and shit.

"Will Ferrell! You're my favorite actor." "FAVORITE? Really? Wow." "Yeah. When people say, 'Who's your celebrity crush?' I say you." [Will Ferrell walks away, files restraining order, is not thrilled to realize he is seated right in front of me.]

“Will Ferrell! You’re my favorite actor.”
“FAVORITE? Really? Wow.”
“Yeah. When people say, ‘Who’s your celebrity crush?’ I say you.”
[Will Ferrell walks away, files restraining order, is not thrilled to realize he is seated right in front of me.]

Backstage after the show with my idol and the show's creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Backstage after the show with my idol and the show’s creator, Lin-Manuel Miranda.

Christopher Jackson plays George Washington. I met him backstage after In the Heights seven years ago. He remembered me as "the dance girl."

Christopher Jackson plays George Washington. I met him backstage after In the Heights seven years ago. He remembered me as “the dance girl.” So I hugged him the way you hug an old friend.

Daveed Diggs is a gem. I want to listen to his voice all day, forever.

Daveed Diggs is a gem. I want to listen to his voice all day, forever.

I told Jonathan Groff that Glee will forever be one of my favorite TV shows because it changed the game for dancers. I also said I was happy his character married Rachel Berry in the end.

I told Jonathan Groff that Glee will forever be one of my favorite TV shows because it changed the game for dancers. I also said I was happy his character married Rachel Berry in the end.

Leslie Odom Jr. plays Aaron Burr and this guy needs a Tony Award, STAT. I told him his voice "sounds like soft butter." IT DOES.

Leslie Odom Jr. plays Aaron Burr and this guy needs a Tony Award, STAT. I told him his voice “sounds like soft butter.” IT DOES.

This is my dear friend Kamille Upshaw. She's a swing, which is the most intense role you can have in a show, IMO. We met when she was a student at Juilliard and I got to write about her for Dance Spirit. A few years later, when I was editor in chief, I put her on the cover. Now she's IN HAMILTON.

This is my dear friend Kamille Upshaw. She’s a swing, which is the most intense role you can have in a show, IMO. We met when she was a student at Juilliard and I got to write about her for Dance Spirit. A few years later, when I was editor in chief, I put her on the cover. Now she’s IN HAMILTON.

Meredith Vieira was there, too! All my role models!

Meredith Vieira was there, too! All my role models!

I’ve been writing a lot. Here are a few recent favorites:

I have the flu. My fever has been hovering around 101.8 for the past two days and I am over it. Last night I finally gave in and popped some Ambien so I could get some quality shut-eye. It worked. I feel slightly better today, and my fever is down. Zika Virus, be gone! (And yeah, first week of Brooklyn Half training is going great what with all this extra rest! Don’t run with a fever, people. Be wise. They say you never regret a workout, but I once went for a three-mile run while I had a fever and it knocked me out for weeks. I regretted that workout.)

STOP COUGHING NEAR ME.

STOP COUGHING NEAR ME.

But enough about me, what has Ellie been up to?

Our growing girl has had a roller coaster few weeks. At six months, she’s clocking in at 44.4 lbs. (For reference, she was 12 weeks old and 18.6 lbs. when we got her.)

As always, we’re holding her rapid weight gain in a very positive light. Instead of using words like “huge” or “massive” or “I can’t pick you up,” we say things like, “perfect” and “all muscle” and “Wow, picking you up is great strength training!”

All good, Ellie, I GOT U.

All good, Ellie, I GOT U.

Ellie got to skip town for a day! A few weekends ago, Brian and I rented a Zipcar for a few hours so we could drive out to New Jersey, all in the name of puppy play. Brian had read about this massive dog park — Brookdale Dog Park — and we wanted to take her there since the dog runs in Manhattan are small and crowded, especially on nice weekend days.

All the room to run and play!!!

All the room to run and play!!!

She loved the car ride, and loved exploring the huge park. We walked around for a while and eventually led her into the fenced-in “big dog” area. She ran around and made lots of friends and had the best day ever. So did we.

Suburban life!

Suburban life!

...but still not allowed off-leash in non-fenced areas. Sorry, pup. You cannot be trusted yet!

…but still not allowed off-leash in non-fenced areas. Sorry, pup. You cannot be trusted yet!

She spent her first day away from mom. I had jury duty a few weeks ago, which meant spending two full days away from my precious puppy. I had a full-on cry fest before walking out the door Wednesday morning. I had packed her lunch and filled out her daycare forms, but it was our first day apart since we brought her home in December, and I felt guilty for leaving her and sad because I would miss my favorite coworker. (Again, all emotional indicators point to “unfit for children.”)

Brian picked her up and he said she spotted him standing outside and was so happy to see him. YAY!

Brian picked her up and he said she spotted him standing outside and was so happy to see him. YAY!

Unsurprisingly, she did great, and was sufficiently exhausted after each day.

Separation anxiety!!! (Me. She's fine.)

Separation anxiety!!! (Me. She’s fine.)

Ellie got hurt at the doggy park. It was a wonderful little Saturday, and after our runs and rides, Brian and I took Ellie to the dog park. At one point, she was running alongside a bigger dog, and they both tried to run into a tight space between a bench and the park’s wall. Ellie, being the smaller pup, got jammed and smushed and she screamed and yelped and cried and I fear I will never get that noise out of my head. We immediately scooped her up and took her out of the park and comforted her for a while, but when we put her down she had a hard time walking, and was limping. Her front legs were clearly hurt, so we took her right to the vet.

The vet poked around and said they didn’t think anything was broken, but that she had soft tissue damage, and to keep her rested for a few days. She hasn’t been herself, she’s sad, and it’s been heartbreaking. I’ve cried a lot. (I do not know how parents handle their children being hurt. Holy shit. THESE EMOTIONS.)

All I wanna do is protect you, Ellie!

All I wanna do is protect you, Ellie!

And now she has to get spayed. No puppies for you, Ellie! She gets spayed on Friday. Poor thing.

We’re moving! Out of Manhattan!

I KNOW, THIS IS CRAZY. And we’re moving soon — next Tuesday, in fact.

The new backyard! Not Central Park, but it'll do.

The new backyard! Not Central Park, but it’ll do.

Brian and I have lived in this Upper East Side apartment for the past four years, and we’ve each been in the neighborhood for many years before that. We’ve outgrown this apartment (too. many. bikes.), especially now that we have Ellie, and it’s just gotten stupid expensive. So it’s time for a change. With our lease expiring in April, we decided to look elsewhere, and fell in love with the very first apartment we saw — across the Hudson.

OK fine.

OK fine.

That’s right, kids. We’re packing up and heading to New Jersey. The apartment is bigger (TWO FULL BATHROOMS OMG, A CROHNSIE’S DREAM!), cheaper, right on the water, and very dog friendly. I’ll get to have an actual office, instead of working from the couch and coffee table like I’ve done for the past year and a half. It has a gym and a basketball court (JOIN MY TEAM) and a pool. It’s right next to the ferries that take you to Manhattan in a mere 10 minutes, so it’s not like I won’t be back in Central Park on a regular basis. I love the area, and I’m excited for the change. I keep waiting to feel sad about leaving Manhattan and the proximity to Central Park and November Project, but for now I’m just really excited for our family to make new memories somewhere, and to explore a fresh area.

The newest residents of West New York, NJ. Yes, the actual name of the town is "West New York." New Yorkers for life.

The newest residents of West New York, NJ. Yes, the actual name of the town is “West New York.” New Yorkers for life.

DO YOU WANT TO COME VISIT ME IN NEW JERSEY? RSVP IN THE COMMENTS AND LET ME KNOW WHAT POSITION YOU WOULD LIKE TO PLAY ON THE BASKETBALL TEAM (WHICH I PLAN TO CALL “THE ELLIE-OOPS”). I WILL BE THE DEFENSIVE GUARD, SO THAT POSITION IS TAKEN.

Comments (37)
 
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Date: February 12, 2016 at 10:42 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 19

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Puppy model. Showing off. Such stillness.

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Date: January 28, 2016 at 1:24 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 24

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Date: January 21, 2016 at 1:57 pm- by Ali- Comment(s): 14

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