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A Moving Memorial

by Meghann on February 2, 2012

Back in August and the beginning of September, Derek and I became obsessed with watching every 9/11 memorial special on TV. We recorded dozens of them and learned everything we could about that day and the events leading up to it. We were particularly interested in the ones that focused on the building of the Freedom Tower and the memorial that surrounds it.


The 9/11 memorial museum doesn’t open until later this year, but the memorial grounds opened to the public this past September. When I discovered you could reserve tickets online for the memorial grounds in advance, I reserved two for Derek and I for this morning to pay our respects.


The memorial was gorgeous and very moving. There’s construction and people all around, but the memorial itself is blocked off in such a way that it feels so peaceful and quiet standing by the two infinity pools that represent the two towers.


The names were really what jumped out at me. I traced my hand along a few of them trying to imagine their story and their journey through life. So many lives were cut too short that day, it’s hard not to tear up over it.



After we explored the memorial site, Derek and I hopped in a cab to Motorino – a pizza place that came highly recommended by a few NYC friends.   



$12 pizza and salad lunch special? Don’t mind if we do.


The ‘personal sized’ pizzas were actually a pretty decent size, so Derek and I opted to split the special. We shared the mix green salad.


And the brussels sprouts and pancetta pizza.


The pizza was amazing. It had an olive oil base with fresh brussels sprout scattered on top and crispy pancetta. The 1/2 pizza each was the perfect shared amount.


Probably our cheapest lunch in NYC. Ever.

After we had our fill of pizza, we did little exploring.


And found our friend Jacquie at a local coffee shop (I had tea).


We picked up a Cookie Dough Crumbs Cupcake to split.


Happy Early Birthday to me. 😉


I loved the chocolate filler, but this would have been even more awesome if there was actual cookie dough in the middle. 🙂


T-minus 30 minutes until we’re on our way to the mountains!

Here’s a look back at last year’s ski-cation shenanigans.

Vermont – February 2011 – Ski-Cation

Good times. Good times.

1 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats February 2, 2012 at 6:19 pm

There’s a cupcake shop right next to me here in Chicago called Molly’s Cupcakes, and they do have a cookie dough cupcake with a cookie dough filler! My friend got it when she came to visit on her birthday!
Katie @ Peace Love & Oats recently posted..February Goals!

2 Christina @ Food.Fitness.Fun. February 2, 2012 at 6:40 pm

I love Molly’s! Their mint chocolate is my favorite. They actually just opened a NYC location as well.
Christina @ Food.Fitness.Fun. recently posted..Learned my lesson

3 Lindsay @ Running the Windy City February 2, 2012 at 8:34 pm

Molly’s definitely has the best cupcakes!!
Lindsay @ Running the Windy City recently posted..Protein Success

4 Tami February 2, 2012 at 6:28 pm

My high school healthy teacher died in one of planes, thanks for posting those pictures

5 Hillary February 2, 2012 at 6:29 pm

Crumbs cupcakes are the best I think I’ve ever had. Out of this world!
Hillary recently posted..The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

6 Shannon [Tropical Eats] February 2, 2012 at 6:35 pm

ah still need to go there. waiting for the right time =/
Shannon [Tropical Eats] recently posted..Post Marathon Life Is The Good Life

7 Kathy February 2, 2012 at 6:44 pm

I can’t believe you are blogging/posting for us in between your vacation. (At least I like to think you are doing it all for US…ha! Not too mention your family and personal memories..ha!)

Love the pictures and updates…..
Kathy recently posted..Skiing 101…..

8 Liz February 2, 2012 at 6:57 pm

If you are ever in Santa Barbara there is a place called Whodidly cupcakes that has amazing cupcakes with a cookie dough center!
Liz recently posted..2012, One Month In

9 Sarah @Blonde Bostonian February 2, 2012 at 7:03 pm

I’ve been meaning to visit the memorial – it’s such a beautiful and poignant tribute to the lives lost.
Sarah @Blonde Bostonian recently posted..Them’s Fighting Words

10 mindy @ just a one girl revolution. February 2, 2012 at 7:12 pm

If you and Derek are interested in 9/11 related stuff, make sure you check out “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close” – it was amazing. Bring tissues, though.
mindy @ just a one girl revolution. recently posted..unexpected family time.

11 Angela @ Happy Fit Mama February 2, 2012 at 7:38 pm

Next time we go to NYC, the memorial is on the list to see. It sounds and looks like it is a beautiful tribute to those that lost their lives on that day.
Angela @ Happy Fit Mama recently posted..Music and Baking

12 Army Amy* February 2, 2012 at 7:54 pm

I visited the Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial not long after it happened. It was so emotional. I’m sure the 9/11 Memorial is much the same. I’d love to visit it and pay my respects.*
Army Amy* recently posted..The Laziness is Strong in This One

13 Ashley @ My Food 'N' Fitness Diaries February 2, 2012 at 7:57 pm

oh boy, a cookie dough cupcake sounds incredible! i agree, a cookie dough filling would be the BEST!
Ashley @ My Food ‘N’ Fitness Diaries recently posted..Thursday Threes

14 Chelsea February 2, 2012 at 7:58 pm

Have you seen the movie Remember Me? It touches base a little with 9/11 (well only the ending really), but it really broke my heart. It honestly puts you in someones shoes that just happened to be working in the towers that day…I can only imagine what it must’ve been like living in New York when that all occurred…

15 Megan February 2, 2012 at 7:59 pm

Now that is a SERIOUS cupcake!

16 Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs February 2, 2012 at 8:01 pm

The last time I was in NYC was in the summer of 2001, just before 9/11 happened. We are hoping to get there sometime this spring, and definitely want to check out the memorial!
Also, that cupcake looks delicious!

Have a great time in the mountains!
Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs recently posted..Story Time

17 Missy February 2, 2012 at 8:28 pm

Okay, burning question here — are you bringing your DSLR camera on the slopes? Or are you going to be using a point ‘n shoot? I ask because I am going on a ski trip myself (Park City!!) soon and I want to bring my DSLR with me on the slopes to snap cool pics but…ugh. What if I fall? If you are, can you PLEASE tell me what your setup is/how you haul it?

18 Meghann February 3, 2012 at 7:11 am

Hi Missy, I’m just going to ski with my point and shoot – there’s no way I would trust myself with my DSLR up there! 🙂

19 jana @ newly wife healthy life February 2, 2012 at 8:39 pm

Wow that brussels sprouts and pancetta pizza looks incredible! What an awesome flavor combination!

I visited the 9/11 site last time I was in New York too. This was in 2008 though, so much of what the memorial would potentially look like was still in discussion. Just being there was so moving and it really made such an impact on me. Something I will never forget that’s for sure.
jana @ newly wife healthy life recently posted..Not-Refried Beans

20 Jessica @ Sushi and Sit-Ups February 2, 2012 at 8:42 pm

I definitely want to see the 9/11 Memorial. We watched the documentary series on Discovery Channel about the building, and not only is it such a great memorial and so moving, but it’s a really great archaeological accomplishment. It’s so interesting!
Jessica @ Sushi and Sit-Ups recently posted..Sea Thai

21 Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife February 2, 2012 at 9:13 pm

WHOA that cupcake looks awesome!

What a neat/special memorial. I had no idea it was open–how cool and how sad. I know the families will never forget. Thanks for sharing!
Annette @ EnjoyYourHealthyLife recently posted..Protein-Packed Mexican Lunch (Recipe)

22 Cait's Plate February 2, 2012 at 10:41 pm

Happy early birthday indeed! We have the same birthday so I think I should be picking up one of those babies as well!
Cait’s Plate recently posted..Winter Escapes

23 Aditi February 2, 2012 at 11:02 pm

Yay! I am so glad you guys made it to Motorino! Its is by far my favorite place to eat out in NYC and this is coming from someone who really enjoys eating out 🙂

I was actually there for dinner tonight by random chance and also enjoyed the brussels sprout pizza! Its so so good!

24 Colleen February 3, 2012 at 12:54 am

I was in NY for one week in March 2001 and was in the Towers area multiple times via subway, bike, walking, shopping, etc. I have a good friend that was working in downtown that faithful day and watched the events unfold from her office window. I would love to go back and see the memorial.

Have a great time skiing!

25 Emily February 3, 2012 at 8:02 am

That cupcake looks AMAZING!
Emily recently posted..Another day, Another RUN!

26 Hope @ With A Side Of Hope February 3, 2012 at 8:21 am

I’ve always wanted to try a Crumb’s cupcake! That one looks incredible. I tried a cupcake from Magnolia a couple of years ago and I was not impressed.
Hope @ With A Side Of Hope recently posted..Beginning of February Favorites…

27 Lee February 4, 2012 at 1:15 pm

Yikes. The 9/11 memorial might warrant its own, respectful post. The transition from that to pizza & cupcakes was rough.

28 Life's a Bowl February 5, 2012 at 8:31 am

We’re planning to check out the memorial- it’s my #1 sight to see next weekend 🙂
Life’s a Bowl recently posted..Extremely & Incredibly

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