butterfly conservatory


Here’s a baking break for y’all 🙂 Last week, I went with some coworkers to explore the American Museum of Natural History. One of their current exhibitions is the beautiful butterfly conservatory. It was absolutely incredible. So many jewel-toned butterflies fluttering around me… I was giddy. Here are a few snapshots.


If you have a chance, go see them for yourself and also watch the film Flight of the Butterflies, an amazing story about the migration of the monarch butterflies also at the museum. Then say hi to the dinosaurs and blue whale!


American Museum of Natural History
Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024-5192

Broadway on a budget

If my life were a musical, I would obviously be the star. Although that would be difficult as I like singing but not necessarily in front of people. Public performances tend to make me a bit shy.

My dad always tells of my first ‘role’ in my preschool’s Thanksgiving play. I was a pilgrim complete with a white paper plate bonnet and black construction paper collar. Everyone had one line which was: ‘I brought ________!’ filled in by whatever picture of food they had cut out and glued onto their paper plate. My line was ‘I brought turkey!’ Very clutch. But when it came time to present my line, I got so bashful I barely whispered it in the mousiest tone. Apparently all the parents thought it was adorable because they began laughing and applauding. I couldn’t have been more embarrassed but deep down I’m sure I thought Nailed It.

When it comes to performances, I like to leave it to the professionals. BROADWAY baby! This is the perfect city to see all the big Broadway shows, if you have hundreds of dollars to spare, which I don’t. But no worries, because there are plenty of ways to find Broadway tickets without being a slave to the TKTS sign.

(1) Hit the theatres early in the morning

Even the biggest shows will have leftover tickets. So make a list of the ones you want to see and go directly to the theater’s box office the day of the performance (~$30/ticket). They open at 10am but anyone who shows up after 9am is a fool. Call the box office ahead of time and ask what time they would suggest getting there. Make sure to keep your options open as your first pick may only have a handful of tickets available.

Also, if you have a student ID bring it. It can come in handy.

Shows I’ve seen with this method: Mamma Mia, Anything Goes

(2) Sign up for email lists

In many ways, NYC caters to the young. I’m signed up for LincTix which offers discounted $30 tickets to shows at Lincoln Center for those 21-35 years old. And if you have young friends, they can sign up too so that you can all sit together! Oh to be young and poor… yet incredibly cultured.

Shows I’ve seen with this method: War Horse

(3) Find a rich benefactor or… parents

When my family came to visit last summer, my mom, sister and I knew we wanted to go see Wicked. But everyone and their mom wants to see this show (look at previous statement) and I knew the methods above probably wouldn’t cut it. So Mama Choo swept in and took care of it all for us. And you know what, I think she’ll tell you it was TOTALLY worth it! We planned WAY ahead of time (about 2 months beforehand) in order to get the best seats. This is the old fashioned, most expensive way but if one person plans and another person pays, it seems less painful?

Shows I’ve seen with this method: Wicked

Minskoff Theater

(4) Make Broadway friends

Don’t have any? Hang out by the Tisch School for an hour and you’re set. Or find anyone who’s somewhat connected to Broadway. You never know, it could be your cousin’s landlord’s dog walker or your coworker. This week one of the producers for Peter and the Starcatcher gave us some free tickets at work. That’s right, FREE tickets! The best kind.

Shows I’ve seen with this method: Peter and the Starcatcher

coworkers at Peter and the Starcatcher (Brooks Atkinson Theater)

In other news, I’ll be spending Easter weekend in DC! I’m open to any and all recommendations!

Hangin’ at the Guggenheim

Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan is never one to shy away from controversy. His latest exhibition at the Guggenheim Museum, Maurizio Cattaelan: All, which ends today is certainly a spectacle to see. Comprised of a lifetime of all but two of his works, it is a showcase of an artist’s life– all shown hanging.

The building of the Frank Lloyd Wright-designed Guggenheim Museum is a work of art in itself. When I saw this exhibition last weekend with one of my roommates Jess we mentioned how perfect the space was for this exhibition. The walkway of the museum, which spirals up four floors, allows for you to constantly discover different works as you ascend the building. It was like an elaborate game of I-Spy. I definitely felt like I understood a bit of the eccentric and intriguing, yet incredibly whimsical, personality of Maurizio Cattelan.

happy Sunday everyone!

I’m gonna spend my Sunday watching both the Patriots v. Ravens & 49ers v. Giants games. Hoping for a Patriots/Giants Super Bowl!!

and happy Chinese New Year tomorrow as well– here’s to the Year of the Dragon!

Live from NEW YORK…

This summer when I first arrived in the city, I was a bit overwhelmed by the number of people (and sweat) and underwhelmed by the magic of this city. Of course, most of my notion of a “perfect New York” was solely due to watching films like Sleepless in Seattle and Serendipity way too many times. I had relented to the fact that life, especially in New York City, just isn’t how it’s shown in movies. But now, I realize all I needed to do was add some twinkle lights and… New York City is suddenly starting to feel very magical!

This weekend was a wonderful surprise in itself when one of my Vanderbilt friends, Erica, popped into the city for a visit with her sister and boyfriend. We spent the afternoon culturing ourselves first at MoMA (Museum of Modern Art) which is renowned as the home of van Gogh’s Starry Night. I personally love MoMA as it also has one of the best photography collections and the building itself is a very stark, contemporary space.

We then stopped by Rockefeller Center to see the assembly of the new Christmas tree as well as the skaters on the ice rink.

Margaret trivia fact #1: I have never ice skated in my life.

Afterwards we got some Chinese food nearby. Scratch that, Erica, her sister and boyfriend got Chinese food while I smuggled in some Chipotle I had picked up (so cultured and refined I know but I was craving it!). We were struggling to get through dinner though in anticipation for what lay ahead afterwards…


Oh, do I love a Broadway musical! And this one was a steal for $31 (tip: Erica had checked with the ticket office earlier that day and bought student-rate tickets). The show was fantastic– full of outlandish costumes and fun dancing! It’s given me a new motivation to attend as many Broadway shows as possible. Because like twinkle lights, I really do think they make the city magical…

Margaret trivia fact #2: As a child, I was OBSESSED with the Sound of Music and can to this day recite the entire film. It’s a gift and a curse (for my family).

Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)
11 West 53 Street  New York, NY 10019
(212) 708-9400
Rockefeller Center
48th-51st Street btwn 5th & 6th Avenue, NY NY
(212) 549-5100
Mamma Mia!
1634 Broadway, New York, NY 10019

Just another Manic Monday…

here’s a silly text conversation between two working girls in the city (myself and my friend Anne Larimer). she bought me a beautiful monogrammed mug from Anthropologie for my birthday which I was so happy to bring to work today!

M: Seriously love my mug! Perfect for this chilly weather xo

AL: Yummy is that hot chocolate?

M: No I wish! Ginger green tea. With honey 🙂

AL: My twin mug and its coaster 🙂

Speaking of all things beautiful and British, did anyone see Kate Winslet (in Elie Saab) at the Emmy’s last night? stunning in red.

and a big hip-hip-hooray to Downton Abbey for winning four Emmy’s including Best Mini-series! Can someone in England please send me a boot-leg copy of Series 2?! I can’t wait til JANUARY!!

my favorite look of the night, however, was Christina Hendricks (in Johanna Johnson). so sparkly and va-va-voom!

happy Monday everyone!

the one and only, the Met.

i don’t think i could ever get sick of walking up these steps.

every weekday (and some weekends) i wake up, take the 4 or 5 line to 86 St then walk across to 5th avenue. and every morning, i seem to be even more exhausted and drained than the last. but when your walk to work includes seeing lines of people patiently awaiting hours before the museum even opens, it perks you up better than a shot of espresso.

my internship at the Met has been both physically and mentally challenging, yet completely rewarding. within the first two weeks, we met with curators and educators of every department from Art of the Ancient Near East to Modern and Contemporary Art. it was unbelievable meeting and hearing from the best of the best in each specific field. i found myself learning so much about topics that i never thought i would have interest in. (if you ever want to learn about slit gongs from oceania, hit me up).

in addition, each intern is responsible for designing two guided tours to the public. the first incorporates the “highlights” or most well known works at the Met. out of a list of 115 or so items, each intern picks 6-8 works with a theme linking them all together (mine is “the working woman found in art”).

Edward Hopper, Tables of Ladies, 1931

the other tour is an open-ended special topics tour in which any works can be chosen to develop a very specialized tour of our own interests (mine is entitled “European Art through the Five Senses”).

Edouard Manet, Young Lady in 1866

i found this process to be at first daunting, and now utterly empowering. i appreciate that the Met doesn’t spoonfeed us a list of “top hits” that must be included in every tour, but instead gives us the leeway to design very personal, individualized tours. every tour you get at the Met will be completely different from the next because it has been carefully tailored by that tour guide through hours (and hours) of thought, consideration, and immense research.

some of my best moments at the Met so far have been:

  1. meeting all of my fellow interns and realizing that we genuinely like each other (you never know with art folk)
  2. seeing the alexander mcqueen exhibit early one morning by myself (so scary, yet so stunningly genius). i must say i never understood how moving fashion could be, until i saw this.
  3. having a visitor ask me how to get out of the museum. and me actually knowing!
  4. rediscovering just how lucky i was to finally listen to my heart and follow my passion, art.

so if you ever find yourself at the Met this summer, let me know. you will find yourself on a tour with me around the museum, whether you’re willing or not.

Savage Beauty, Alexander McQueen Exhibit

“There’s no way back for me now. I am going to take you on journeys you’ve never dreamed were possible.” Alexander McQueen

Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 5th avenue, ny ny
(212) 535.7710