Sunday, December 11, 2011

Kick up Those Heels

When Dominic and I told Aunt Dee we were moving to New York City she was thrilled. One of the first things she told us to do was see the Rockettes at Radio City Music Hall. We made that happen tonight Aunt Dee. The ladies did not disappoint!

Talk about holiday cheer, this was quite the show! With high kicks and precision, dressed up as reindeer and Santas, the whole production was delightful. There was a live nativity including parading camels and donkeys (does everyone know about this but me?). Radio City was stunning.

Not one to miss out on commercial Christmas opportunities, Dominic even treated me to a bag of chestnuts roasting on an open fire before the show. I thought of you Aunt Theresa - they were delicious.

We're crossing NYC to-dos off our bucket list one at a time this year. Next up - New Year's Eve in Times Square?! Are we up for it...

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Forget Santa, Rachel's Comin' To Town!

You all have one; she's that friend that'll do anything for you. That friend who could care less about distance, time zones or poor correspondence - she's there for you no matter what. For me, that gal is Rachel. Twice. Twice! Rachel has flown to NYC to spend a long weekend with Dominic and I. She's just the best.

Rachel came to town this weekend and enjoyed the Winter Merienda and the big city life at Christmastime. I spent some quality girl time enjoying shopping in the upper West side, the holiday windows along 5th Avenue and Rockefeller Center's bright tree. Thankfully, Rachel will do two things very few guests will tolerate: excessive walking and obnoxious crowds. What a friend!

We had some quality time to catch up. After several people-watching train rides, meals and skinny mochas at Starbucks we knew just about everything happening in each other's lives again. Isn't it nice when you can pick up right where you left off and pretend like you live next door again?

Window displays on 5th. Lady Liberty's wrap (above) is made out of Jelly Belly jellybeans!

I hope we showed you a good time Rach. Thank you again for making the trip!

Friday, December 09, 2011

Fordham's Winter Marienda

Each year, Fordham recognizes the graduating class of International Political Economy and Development students at a December merienda. As far as I can tell, in the Philippines a brunch or mid-morning snack is called a merienda. Here at Fordham, the rules are changed a bit and the professors, students and the dean of the graduate school gather for a formal dinner and awards ceremony.

Be prepared readers, as our dear friend Elizabeth commented after the event, "Dominic won IPED!"

Dominic was inducted into Sigma Iota Rho, the Honor Society for International Studies. He was also inducted into the Ancient Order of the Silver Kalabaw for his studies in the Philippines last January. What was most impressive, however, is Dominic also received the Maria Carmella Dela Rosa Oliveros Award for earning a high pass on all four of his comprehensive exams and the Matteo Ricci Award for Academic Excellence! Way to go Dominic!

Here are three things I didn't know about Matteo Ricci before the Merienda:
  1. Ricci was a missionary in China in the 1500s: He wrote The True Meaning of the Lord of Heaven arguing that Confucianism and Christianity are similar in many ways. He used this idea as a missionary to convert Chinese men who were educated in Confucianism and the Chinese classics.
  2. Ricci was an intelligent man: He was one of the first Western scholars to master Chinese script and Classical Chinese. He was a skilled mathematician and cartographer.
  3. His current title is Servant of God. In the Catholic Church, this title designates someone who is being investigated by the Church for possibly being recognized as a saint.
The night is also a time for students to award their peers with superlatives. These fun certificates are meant to bring out the personality and lighthearted humor among the classmates. Dominic's superlative - a testimony to his leadership and charisma I'm sure - was:
Dominic: Most likely to serenade the crowd with a Katy Perry song when he's inaugurated as the 45th President of the U.S.

Now... where to hang that plaque?

The Millennium Network

I have a great friend from the Peace Corps who works for the Clinton Foundation. She generously invited me to be her date to this year's Millennium Network fundraiser. I wasn't sure how I'd be holding up after the red-eye back from Seattle, but who passes up the opportunity to spend time downtown with a great friend and former U.S. president?

Between the free drinks, movie star, rock band, Chelsea and Bill I didn't know what to do with myself. It was quite the event and a neat chance to meet some fascinating people like the Talk to Me Guy Bill who happens to be my friend's boss. He sure had some stories to tell!

I hear the night was a success (based on the mailing list I ended up on the next day). "More than 1,000 young professionals and philanthropists coming together at Terminal 5 to support the life-changing work of the Clinton Foundation."

It was neat to learn from Clinton himself how he and the foundation have encouraged world leaders to make Commitments to Action to improve schools, agriculture, energy efficiency, health and small business development around the world. It was endearing to hear Chelsea talk so lovingly of the father she admires. He might have looked older, but he sure is busy these days.

After they finished speaking the Fray got up to perform.

You might have heard their song on the radio before:

Thank you for the invitation Jenny! You're too kind.