Thursday, July 25, 2019

Our Environment

Hi Guys - this post is a little out of the ordinary for me but lately I’ve noticed a lot of waste around me in general. I’ve been feeling very strongly about doing my part to try to save our planet and wanted to share a few ways we’ve been making small adjustments to our daily habits.

1.       Grocery Shopping

Moving to the US last year, I was so shocked to find that grocery stores double bagged everything in plastic bags unless you specifically asked them not to. Some stores don’t even give you the option to buy any reusable bags! We try our best to remember to bring our large grocery bags every time we go shopping.

This past weekend I bought some cotton mesh bags for produce this past weekend. They’re machine washable, durable and all the reviews say they’ll keep produce fresh for longer in the fridge. I can’t wait to test them out!

2.       Coffee

My office uses a Keurig machine. Some of my colleagues and I struggled with that since the single pods are not recyclable and end up in a landfill somewhere. I received a universal reusable K-Cup for Christmas and now I get to refill it with my choice of coffee every day!  

At home we have a standard coffee percolator. I ordered this reusable coffee filter for our grinds from Amazon and so far so good. We also have a Nespresso and we collect all of our empty pods in a designated bag (which you can find at any Nespresso store) and will return them once the bag is full!

3.       House Cleaning

I noticed we were running through a lot of paper towels very quickly at our house. I ordered this pack of microfiber towels and love them! We use them to wipe down counters, dust, clean mirrors and even dry some of our hand wash only dishes. They’re machine washable and we even toss them in the dryer. Easy breezy! We also ordered this pack of silicone sponges for our puppy's dishes, cleaning the bathroom etc. Every once in a while I just toss them in boiling water for a few minutes and they’re all clean! The best part is that they don’t smell at all like traditional sponges!

4.       Packing Lunch

I noticed I was using a lot of plastic baggies for snacks, fruit etc. and just ordered my first Stasher during the Amazon Prime days. It’s on the pricy side, but if I find this one useful, I’ll add a few more on my Christmas wish list this year. We freeze a lot of stuff now and it’s just great to be able to reuse these baggies for lunches, marinating food, freezing food, and even trying out the sous-vide method! It's super easy to wash on the top rack of the dishwasher too!

I hope this has helped inspire you a bit to take a small step closer to a zero waste lifestyle and help save our planet! 

Sunday, July 14, 2019

Hunter's Point Conservatory

Hunter's Point Park Conservancy is a nonprofit volunteer-run organizations that was formed in 1998 (called the "Friends of the Gantry" at the time) and has evolved into a gorgeous waterfront park with hundreds of free events each year!

My friend and I found a volunteer gardening opportunity and had a great time meeting new people, while cleaning up and weeding the lawns! There are so many great volunteer opportunities around and I was glad to come across this one online!

After our volunteer shift we walked along the water and treated ourselves to iced coffee a the Coffeed stand and just took in all the nice views! Such a perfect day in Long Island City!

Monday, July 8, 2019

Breads Bakery

Breads Bakery is a New York bakery dedicated to producing high quality artisanal homemade breads. They have four locations: Union Square, Lincoln Centre, Time Out Market in DUMBO, and a Kiosk at Bryant Park. We visited the Lincoln Centre location and there was plenty of space on the patio outside. We managed to snag a table inside to relieve ourselves from the heat and cool off with the AC.

I’m not usually an iced coffee person, but ordered an iced latte which was very a bit too milky for me but still refreshing and we ordered a number of different pastries to share. My favourite had to be the cheddar croissant, and the spinach burka. We also tried the feta bureka, potato burka and the almond croissant. The chocolate babkas looked amazing and seem to be a favourite as well! I couldn’t resist taking a photo of the gorgeous rugalach sandwiches fresh out of the oven - chocolate croissants stuffed with mascarpone, strawberries and Nutella.  

Breads Bakery offers bread baking classes which would make a great gift or be a fun corporate event! I wish I could’ve tried everything on the menu but I’ll definitely need to come back! This spot is a carb lover’s dream and a must try for locals or visitors.

Travel Tip: This is right by the south west entrance of Central Park. Rent some bikes and cycle through the gorgeous tree lined paths to escape the concrete jungle and enjoy some greenery!

Monday, July 1, 2019

Fire Island, NY

One of my favourite things about living in New York City is that we can easily escape to the beach or go up north on a hike whenever we want! The areas surrounding the city offer so much more than just the hustle and bustle of Times Square or snazzy restaurants with overpriced cocktails. We decided to take a Friday off work to explore Fire Island which is just off Long Island!

It was a bit of a trek to get to, but after an hour long train ride followed by a ferry ride, we finally got to Ocean Beach where we spent the day swimming and relaxing in the sand! The island is very narrow so you can get to the beach quickly but it's quite long with multiple beaches so I did some research ahead of time to find the right beach for us. Ocean Beach was so cute, and had lots of great waterfront restaurants and bars as well as some shops. We had an amazing lunch (lobster roll and muscles) at Rachel's Restaurant and Bakery topped off by ice cream from the general store.

My favourite part about the island is that vehicles are prohibited and all you see are pedestrians and bicyclists on the streets! This would be such a great spot to rent a summer home and enjoy beach time with family or friends! It's a great idea for a day off or a stay-cation and I hope to go back again with a group of friends!