A look back before 2019

This blog first began when I moved to Manhattan for my master’s degree and was killing time while job hunting after graduation. During said #funemployment period, I was ferociously hunting down a dress during the Lilly Pulitzer end of summer sale. I was super frustrated to find there was no listing of LP signature stores.  So I created my own and the rest is history.

From there, I tried to impart some hard-learned knowledge to make living in the City easier for hopeful new urbanites, from writing tips on how to how to master the NYC bus system during rush hour, to creating a resource guide for the notorious task of  finding a New York City apartment, and even highlighting the correct way to order a New York bagel (yes, there is a wrong way) during peak holiday season. If you’re wondering, these are the 5 dead giveaways that you’re not a New Yorker, and finally – a few thoughts on how to know when it’s time to leave NYC.

And that I did – happily said goodbye to the concrete jungle and moved back to Boston. Don’t worry, my love of Lilly is still going strong and I remain a prep through and through, just in a new city.

Please know that I won’t be in Boston forever though, and fully plan to retire to West Palm by the ripe old age of 75. But for now I’ll keep on jaunting my way around New England. Hope you enjoy coming along for the ride.

-Danielle

Post-note: My dedication to blogging has come and gone through the years, and it’s pretty evident with the sporadic postings…but it’s back again. So watch out 2019. 😉

Lululemon Warehouse Sale in Boston this weekend, Oct. 16-18

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While living in New York, I learned a thing or two about navigating sample sales. And tonight, I was able to attend Lululemon’s special VIP pre-shop of their #BOSThrowdown Warehouse Sale. The deals are AMAZING, it is honestly worth waiting in line this weekend when the sale is open to the public (to a degree, of course. No pair of yoga pants is worth your sanity).

Here are some general tips for perusing the sale and maximizing your time:

  • Know your size before entering. – Last week I visited a Lululemon retail store and tried on various styles, so I wouldn’t have to waste time trying them on at the sale.
  • Prioritize the items you want to purchase. – For me, yoga pants were my number one priority, followed by workout tops, sports bras and then other items. Go directly to your priority items the second you get in the room to ensure they don’t sell out.
  • Racks are organized by size. – Don’t freak if the size on the price tag doesn’t match the posted size for that rack/aisle. Some are in European sizing, but the size on the actual garment tag inside the clothes will be correct.
  • Be sure to walk the perimeter of the sales floor and also check out the center aisle. – This is where accessories, scarves and sports bras are located.
  • Grab everything you possibly may want off the racks and carry them around with you as you shop. – The more quickly you can snap up your items, the better. You can edit down your selections later. The clock is ticking, and more and more shoppers are being let onto the sales floor. This is bad. The more shoppers, the more competition for the items that your want.
  • The dressing room is pretty spacious and is set up with a lot of different mirror stations. – This sure has NYC sample sales beat, where you usually have to battle other half-naked ladies to a quick glimpse in the mirror. At the Lulu warehouse sale, I had my very own mirror in the communal space. Amazing. Once you snag a spot at a mirror, set up your dressing room command post. If you’ve pulled multiple sizes to try on, sort them into piles by size and style of clothing. This helps to streamline the process, so you can get in and out of the dressing room as quickly as possible. UPDATE as of 10/16 – According to the LululemonWHUS twitter account, dressing rooms have been removed to make room for more product. 
  • While in line for the dressing room (if they add one back) or to check out, start taking clothes off their hangers. – The sales associates have to do this before you enter the dressing room or pay for your items, so help expedite the process and speed up the line.
  • Inventory selection was on-point. – There were tons of black yoga pants and leggings, which are pretty much my uniform of choice. Also a bunch of different length options, even shorts – both cycling and running. Lots of types of tops with different fits, from form-fitting to flowy. I was a bit disappointed with the sports bra selection, but wasn’t able to dig through the boxes very much due to the huge pile of clothes I was lugging around. So I’d recommend hitting the boxes towards the beginning of your hunt. And the best find of the night were the sweaters. They are located in boxes on tables in the initial aisle you enter when you go in the room. They are sooo soft, well-made and hug you in all the right places. Definitely my favorite find of the evening.
  • Pricing is sort of confusing. – Sometimes it is unclear what counts as a “top” vs. “tank.” But prices are clearly marked on posters and monitor screens throughout, and you can ask a sales associate for clarification. Here is a snapshot of the pricing screen that I took.

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IF YOU GO
What: Lululemon Boston Warehouse Sale (AKA Beantown Throwdown)
When: Friday, October 16th: 8am – 8pm (last entry 7pm); Saturday, October 17th: 8am- 8pm (last entry 7pm); Sunday, October 18th: 8am- 8pm (last entry 7pm; inventory dependent)image2
Where: Hynes Convention Center – 900 Boylston St, Boston, Massachusetts 02115. You must enter at the 900 B
oylston door.
How: Parking is available at the Prudential Center and nearby at the Pilgrim Parking Hynes garage, though it is recommended to take the T in to the city as parking might get tight.
Cost: Entry is free. Credit and debit cards are only means of payment accepted.

Hope you enjoy the sale as much as I did! I got a bunch of great items for an amazing price, and it was a fun night out with my girlfriends.

How to know if NYC is not for you

New York City is not for everyone, and I will certainly admit it was not for me. I’m proud to say that I “made it” in such a cutthroat place (and had a lot of fun doing it), but I decided to relocate back to Boston.

It took a lot of careful thought and weighing of options, but I ultimately knew moving was the best choice for me.

However, sometimes the decision is not so easy and you can find yourself wavering back and forth. Here are the deal breakers that helped make me make up my mind. Hopefully they can help you too.

  • Cost of Living – New York is one of the most expensive places to live in the world. No exaggeration. Want a $15 cocktail? No problemo – even the skeeviest of dive bars will easily charge that price. New York gets you coming and going – literally – evening paying for movers is insanely expensive.
  • Transportation – If you don’t mind public transportation, then kudos to you. But I love my car and prefer driving – mostly for the cleanliness, personal space and not having to talk to/make eye contact with strangers. But it is cost prohibitive to keep a car in the city. Sadly $450/month is a good deal. This fact made me weep on a daily basis, especially when I had to pay that in a pinch one time. It is possible to find less expensive rates, but you will then have to commute to the lot – which costs time, money and convenience. In this case, if you can afford it, just bite the bullet and pay the higher price for the closer garage. You’ll use the car more and it will be worth the money in the long run.
  • Quality of Life – I grew up in the suburbs and went to college in a nice suburb. I am ALL ABOUT THE ‘BURBS. So living in a city was completely new to me. Long gone were the days of in-unit washer/dryers and a spacious, new construction 1-bedroom unit with included parking space. Hello to shared laundry rooms (if any at all), dingy hallways, loud neighbors and walk-ups (luckily my buildings had elevators – but not all of my friends’ did). Not going to lie, I was not all about city living.
  • Dirty and Smelly Factor – There’s no getting around it. New York is one dirty city and always smells like urine. Always. Regardless of the season. Take one walk through the subway, and you’ll know what I’m talking about.
  • Housing – Unless you rent directly from the owner of your unit, your rent WILL get hiked up every year. So unless you can afford it, you’re going to have to move to a new apartment every few years, if not every year. And God help you if your neighborhood becomes trendy and the prices REALLY go up. RIP Brooklyn.
  • Nightlife – New York is one of the best places for nightlife. But when you live there, it can be hard to actually afford it. One Saturday night out could easily run you $150. While that seems outrageous, it’s sadly realistic. Let’s break it down…
    • Taxi from UES to LES: $25
    • Dinner (entree, 1 cocktail, tax/tip): $50
    • 2 after-dinner drinks over course of night: $30
    • Taxi from LES to UES: $25
    • GRAND TOTAL: $130 😦
  • Social Opportunities – While living in the city, I was a member of Magnises, which is basically a social club with special member perks (like free drinks at certain restaurants, etc). They hosted weekly networking happy hours and I met some really nice friends through the club. I was sad that I had to leave this behind, so it was definitely a sacrifice of moving out of the city.
  • Health and Fitness – One of my favorite parts of New York was the plethora of boutique fitness studios. Classpass was my absolute JAM and I looked forward to trying new classes every day after work. The downside is that New York is so large, so it can take almost an hour to get to different studios all over the city. Nevertheless, I found a few near my apartment that I really loved. There are certainly a bunch of studios in Boston, but the sheer multitude of studios in NYC is incomparable. So this was definitely a downside of relocating.
  • Parks – Sure, there are nice parks in the suburbs too. But it was SO convenient to stroll out of my building with my dog and be at the dog park within minutes. And the gorgeous view of the East River didn’t hurt either. So…another downside of leaving the city.

Everyone is unique and values certain things differently, so you have to think long and hard about what is important to you. But first and foremost, be honest with yourself. Unless you REALLY want to be in New York, the positives are not always going to outweigh the negatives. You have to do what is best for you.

If you’re still in doubt, this article from yesandyes.org was extremely helpful to me (specifically the hating your city aspect, not the job part – so skip to the second half of the article). Take a look and best of luck!

And with that — I officially announce my relocation to Boston, so get ready for posts about life back in New England. Don’t worry New Yorkers – if I think of a helpful tip or blurb, I’ll still blog about the city too.hqdefault