Saturday, July 26, 2014

Wanna Wallet

Today in the midst of packing, I've been presented with a new conundrum that only shopping can solve. If I remember correctly, the odd-looking Monopoly money used in the UK does not fit in my American wallet. The bills are fatter and sort of stick out of the top (also, my wallet has sort of given up on life and decided to dangle open at one end) so obviously I have to go shopping for a new one.
Here are few on my wish list and, well, I want it to be cute.

Sidebar: I'm not sure that any of these would work, except the one I found online from a UK-based store. Does anyone know the term I would search if I were shopping online for a women's wallet that fits Monopoly (British) money? I'm vaguely aware that they're referred to as "purses," but otherwise I have absolutely no idea. Please comment below and let me know!

Vintage Turkish Coin Purse, found on Etsy
Card Holder, from John Lewis
Phone wallet by Coach (and it''s on sale) from Macy's
This beaded beauty that probably weighs a ton from Anthropologie

Pell Street

There are a lot of things that I will miss about living in NYC, but I think that this particular one-lane side street might take the cake. Home of the legendary Joe's Shanghai, my favorite dim sum parlor, and the best haircut you'll ever get (for under $15)... Pell Street in Chinatown. 

While walking down the tourist-shop-laden Mott Street, one might miss this unassuming looking alley. From either end, the only thing you might see is a steady queue of people waiting for their chance to indulge in soup dumplings at Joe's. I've cured many a hangover with an overloading of "brunch" at Delight 28 dim sum. The first time I stumbled across this dining hall, it took me a few months to find it again; it used to be impossible to find on Google maps, a sort of Narnia of all things delicious. 

Only blocks from my favorite watering hole, I once took a bet (from the bartender) and went to a hair salon on this street to have all of my hair cut off. All of it. Pixie on a whim. And it was amazing. 

I'm going to miss everything about this little place, this little neighborhood that made me feel as if I had a place in this anonymous labyrinth of a city. And I need to go back one more time before we leave.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Stress (Relief)

I had a lot more I wanted to say this morning, before the internet stole the past two days of my work. 
I find it ironic that I had written and edited this post about the relaxing and stress-relieving properties of lavender essential oil, and have ended up very stressed out in the process. Ah, technology. You never cease to fail me. 

I love lavender. I have a lavender plant on my bedroom windowsill that I have somehow managed to keep alive for about two years. It looks a bit depressed, but I'm proud of my wilted green thumb nonetheless. There is a vial of essential oil next to my bed, and every night before bed I like to dab a few drops on my pulse points to help me unwind.

Lately, though, I've found an even greater use for my favorite oil: bug bites! I'm a magnet for mosquitos in the summer months, and dabbing the lavender oil eliminates itching and swelling (and has natural antiseptic properties, to boot!). I personally think it works better than any over-the-counter allergy cream I've bought before, and I feel a lot better about putting something natural on my skin. 

With the increased use of my little bottle, the need for a refill arose. There is a really interesting shop down the street from my apartment, but I've always avoided it because of the strong hippie incense vibe I got when I walked by. I couldn't have been more wrong! I'm really glad I stopped in yesterday, because it was stunning just to look around.

 All of the walls were lined with shelves filled with colorful glass bottles containing a variety of oils and perfume base scents. Everything from dark brown bottles containing the light-sensitive essential oils, to brightly colored essences of bubblegum and chocolate mint stood in neat rows around the entire interior of the store. It reminded me of an ancient apothecary, and I loved wandering around while the owner measured out a new vial of lavender oil for me. I'm just sad that I only just discovered this magical shop right before we're about to leave!

Now, time to unwind from my technological difficulties this morning and prepare for another hectic day of packing.

What is your favorite essential oil? How do you use it? Comment below and let me know!