It’s officially rainy and autumn, which means that it’s time to go thrift shopping for wear-once sweaters, drink mulled wine, listen to the Avett Brothers (I’m not sure why I find their sound so melancholy autumnal!), and pursue all-things-cozy. Even after living in New York for almost two months, sometimes I worry that I’m never going to fall into a rhythm of it feeling like home. This is mostly because my work schedule is so scrambled from week to week. While I’m a creature of habit (it sucks that I can’t watch American Horror Story every Wednesday, and lord knows it would slip off of the table entirely if my roommate didn’t shame me into watching it after the fact), I’m trying to appreciate the spontaneity of my new life here. I’m getting better at embracing the chaos while still hoarding those quiet moments of introspective down-time that keep my weeks sane. Here are a few things that defined my past week!
- There’s a Beetlejuice Bar in the East Village called Beetle House NYC that is an October must. When I went there, there was someone in costume as “Betelgeuse” who, in looks and voice, was a dead ringer for Michael Keaton. Sip your drink while bathed in lush purple lighting and discuss all that is beautiful and creepy in life. Visiting this bar was a good excuse to replay the Halloween classic; revisiting young Alec Baldwin is always an added goodie for your pillow-sack full of treats.
- My favorite neighborhood in New York is fast becoming Nolita (North of Little Italy). Nestled snugly along its cute streets are Greecologies, Ruby’s Cafe, McNally Jackson Books, Jadis, and Mother’s Ruin, to name a few of my favorite recent discoveries. There are still so many little shops there that I want to get lost in. Greecologies is a greek yogurt/coffee shop. I’ve used their rose petal preserves in a Linzer Heart cookie recipe as well as a buttercream icing recipe, and I’m rarin’ to try their bergamot orange preserves next. Ruby’s Cafe is the coziest little restaurant with ambiance that spills out into the street on warm nights. It offers surprisingly affordable food with a self-proclaimed Australian influence. What does Australian influence mean? You won’t find any kangaroo burgers here, but everything on the menu looked like ideal comfort food. McNally Jackson is the most inviting bookstore that I’ve found in New York. I like it a little more than Strand, which has established itself as a staple for the city’s most bookish. McNally Jackson has self-publishing services and a cafe with single-seater desks that reminded me of grade school, in a good way. While the cafe’s wifi ban was initially irksome (I have to write a blog, people!), I’ve actually grown to appreciate its intention of making customers actually focus on the novels that they’re so eager to purchase. Jadis is an inviting wine bar for a friend date or a real date. Honestly, I’d also enjoy going there alone to read a book or write a letter with a glass of wine. I’m definitely going back for their mulled wine when they start serving it next month. Mother’s Ruin got me in there based entirely on its name, but beyond that my roommate and I found that it was the perfect place to collapse with a beer and a veggie burger after a long week.
- My sugar consumption has become a bit too regular and I think my body and mind are getting too used to it. I’ve noticed that on my days off, there is a cupcake-sized lack of energy right in the middle of my day. It’s so strange to see how my habits have changed in a little under two months! It also made me laugh that both a coworker and I brought in chocolate bars to nibble on during our sugar-coated work at our sugar-laced cupcake job. Apparently my diet is reaching a state of balance; It usually only takes me a couple of hours to reach the RDA of my favorite sugar categories. My ultimate goal is to cultivate some wellness habits that will hopefully temper the gains that result from my daily indulgences.
- I know that I suffer from FOMO and find it painful to turn down invitation and opportunities, especially since I’m new to the city and want to discover everything at once. I don’t know if this go-go-go mentality will wear off once I’ve lived here longer, but my guess is that it won’t. I just have to get better at pacing myself and staying on track for the long-term trajectories that I’ve set my sights on. I advocate for the occasional personal day where you just sit in bed and think (or purposely don’t think). So, while I’ve just given you a list of places to check out, remember that you should say no-no-no to the go-go-go once in a while!