We have been married for 8 years and have been living happily in Brooklyn, NY. By day we are both employed as photo and video professionals and it’s no surprise that outside of work we are just as passionately documenting our relationship and personal projects. Between the two of us we have collaborated and produced documentaries, art installations, and commercials that can be found sprinkled across the web. Our work has sent us all around the U.S. as well as to Europe, Asia and Africa. 2017 is the year we are finally establishing a centralized place that will bring together all of the rich visual stories we create. It’s our hope that this project, No Stranger to Us will be a chronicle of our quirky everyday life and the convivial travels and adventures that we take together. We are also hoping to find like-minded collaborators to partner with on future projects.
It’s 21 degrees outside and after bundling up Cooper and I brave the still undiscovered back streets of Bushwick. What are we in search of you might ask? Pizza, burgers, donuts and yes grilled cheese sandwiches made expertly with Vegan cheese! Welcome to the vegan shopping extravaganza at the Vegan Shop Up.
Last Saturday we visited the Flatlands Reformed Church Cemetery which is the oldest church cemetery in Brooklyn. It interns the remains of some of the first families in Brooklyn who lived here in the 17th century. I was surprised to learn that Juliette and I are related to some of the interned: The Hooglandts, the Newkirks, the Bergens, the Schnecks, the Rapaljes. When they immigrated many of them were political and religious refugees of their homeland. Yet we tend to only think of them as settlers.
Taking time for yourself is so hard. One of my resolutions this year is to practice more self-care and focus on my mental health and well-being. Prepping for the week ahead isn’t just checking schedules, or cooking pre-made lunches. It’s strengthening your mind for all of the challenges and distractions that will be pushing and pulling you during the week.
This Sunday transform your my bathroom into a spa-like sanctuary. Light a candle, que up your favorite tranquil playlist, and relax your mind. In an effort to make this tub session more luxurious, I have made my own natural bath salt and mask recipe using two of my favorite fragrances, lemon and lavender.
Winter in New York makes my combination dry/oily skin go crazy. My face and body become excessively dry, and if I apply too much daily moisturizer I find that I have acne flare ups. Lemon and lavender are natural ingredients that I like to use to soothe and treat my skin.
Below you will find all the ingredients needed for this Self Care Sunday sesh.
It’s that time, again, when I realize I’ve beaten up my eye glasses and start thinking about getting a new pair. The real impetus for change last time was Juliette. She really wanted me to replace my safety eye glasses since she didn’t care for the way that they covered my eyes. Her qualm was understandable since I use my eyes to emote and otherwise non-verbally communicate.
The last time I was in this predicament I spent 2 hours in a Warby Parker store obsessively trying on hundreds. I shared the top 4 picks to my social network with great success. Folks love when you ask their opinion, especially when given a finite set of choices. So I’m looking for feedback again. Interested?
This week, February 20th – 26th there is a special vegan menu created in partnership with Riverdel Cheese shop hosted at Citrico. They took classic Mexican recipes and used vegan cheese from the Riverdel Cheese shop. I am fortunate to be able to take advantage of the robust amount of vegan food options that Brooklyn has to offer. In particular I always have my eye out for vegan cheese because of my allergy to Casein.
We had our first visit to the Artists & Fleas artist, designer, and vintage market over the weekend in Williamsburg. I was initially lured by the promise of vegan food options. Upon entering I was immediately drawn to the shimmering BOBO Jewelry stall. Cooper was laughing at me as I salivated over all the bracelets, necklaces and rings adorned with genuine gem stones. While chatting with the owner I found out that BOBO was started in Southern California and that they have an online store.
I am skeptical about buying gem stone jewelry online. Holding a stone in your hand and feeling it’s textures is a meaningful part of the process when choosing the right gem for you. After spending a good amount of time examining all of the stunning jewelry I began to narrow down my favorites. There was an abundant amount of agate and amethyst. I found a delicate amethyst bracelet with a magnetic clasp and had to have it, it was so easy to put on.
Amethyst stones are described as being meditative and calming. They are believed to promote balance and peace. I use them as an emotional healing stone and believe that it will help bring a sense of stability or inner strength when I am wearing it. I love the rich and diverse color of amethyst stones, and think this sweet little bracelet will be a perfect everyday statement piece for me.
The quality and craftsmanship of BOBO Jewelry is outstanding. I was impressed to see a wide range of more rough/organic and fully finished design styles. Now that I feel confident in their artistry I will for sure be visiting the website for more one of a kind jewelry pieces.
On Saturday I bought a winter hat that I had eyed for some time now. It is a Russet Plaid Tweed Bugatti Kangol that I bought at my local hat store, Al’s Men’s shop on Fulton St in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn. Last time I bought a hat there was when shopping for my wedding in August of 2008. Their stylish lid selection is unmatched in Brooklyn.
This tweed cap is 60/40 wool & polyester so it is very soft. My new cap is distinctly British yet was made in Italy. The ear flaps are very important in a winter hat since I have large ears that often get cold. I tried on at least 3 other hats before I was certain that this one was “the one”.
Day 4 – Riding a Dragon
On our fourth day in Iceland we visited the Laxnes Horse Farm just outside of Reykjavik for a two-hour horse riding adventure. Laxnes Farm is own and operated by the Jónasson family and they are dedicated to maintaining a good quality of life for these horses.
In celebration of our eighth wedding anniversary we traveled to Iceland for six days in August 2016 and because we had a limited amount of time I conducted a large amount of research on the area prior to choosing our daily activities. To say that Iceland is otherworldly is an understatement. Iceland has a unique and dramatic landscape that features hot springs, geysers, volcanoes and most noteworthy, waterfalls!
Each day was an epic adventure, and I’m so happy to have spent so much time exploring and experiencing new things with Cooper.