Creating Your 2020 Vision with laurieG of root & bloom

by & filed under Our Favorite Things, Portraiture.

As we move into a new year I am finding time for both reflection and new plans. 

On the advice from a dear friend and yoga instructor – laurieG. This project is excerpted from her online meditation and self-study project root & bloom

http://Learn more at http://ittakesanopenheart.com/root-bloom

I wrote a letter to myself about 2019 and 2020 which was very cathartic. I realized what a wonderful year 2019 had been, how much I had grown and how excited I am for 2020.

Make Your Bed: Best Linen Bedding

by & filed under Portraiture.

When my linen duvet cover lost the will to live I began searcing the Winter sales for a high-quality replacement. While the rest of the world is obsessed with weighted blankets I truly believe that a good night’s rest starts with great linens.

Weight and softness are two of the main points of discussion. The problem with ultra soft, ultra thin sheets is that they’re more susceptible to shredding, especially if you use them often. That’s why the highest quality linen sheets will feel thick and even a little scratchy at first—they’ll get softer with every wash and will last forever.

Cultiver is well-priced, has a large variety of colors and sources like Vogue, Apartment Therapy and House and Garden rate them as best in class.

Snowe is another good option and has a store in NYC so you can actually touch what you are considering purchasing. Their bedding is all made in Italy of Belgian flax they’re created with a special air-washing technology that basically achieves the softness you would get after a few dozen washes. (the packaging is also gorgeous!). Also worth noting: Snowe has a 90-day trial period so you can be sure the high price is worth it.

West Elm While their sheets feel similar to brands like Parachute and Brooklinen, with an ultra light unlike linen feel, if you’ve never slept on linen before, this is a great starter option. I am concerned that these ultra soft, ultra thin sheets will be how they wear over time. West Elm’s sheets aren’t exactly a long term solution but you can get a feel for whether linen sheets are for you- oh, and they are currently on sale…

I discovered that Gilt has great pricing on luxury bedding in the end purchased a set there from Matteo for a great price

The Local Ice Rink List

by & filed under Family Time : New Jersey, Family Time: New York, Portraiture.

Ice Skating Season

Holiday break is here!  Take the opportunity to hit the ice (hopefully not literally) weekdays when the crowds thin out. Choose one of the NJ rinks like Pershing Field  or The brand new rink at American Dream.  

Make a day of it at NYC rinks from iconic Rock Center and Wollman rinks to the free rink at Bryant Park! Please call to confirm opening times and policies. Most offer “skate buddies” for little beginners.

American Dream- Rutherford, NJ

Take advantage of free parking in the early days of this NHL regulation sized rink. Skate all day for $19, $6 skate rentals and free helmets!Newport

Skates – Jersey City
Located in Jersey City’s waterfront community, Newport Skates is the perfect place to skate with kids. The rink is on the smaller side and pretty empty (or mostly kids) weekday afternoons. Season passes, lessons, and group party rates are available.

Charlie Heger Ice Rink – Jersey City
Also known as Pershing Field, this outdoor rink is covered—you can skate (or learn to skate) in all types of weather. Plus, it’s quiet and very affordable. The 2017 skating season will run through mid-March.

NEW Pier 17 South Street Seaport Rink- Downtown Manhattan

This winter at the South Street Seaport, the Winterland Rink adds to the list of seasonal outdoor ice skating options in the the city. Situated on the roof of Pier 17, just a short walk away from the Seaport Museum, the Winterland Rink bills itself as the only rooftop rink in the city.

The Rink at Brookfield Place – Battery Park City
Enjoy stunning views of New York Harbor and the Statue of Liberty while skating around this rink, which returns for its fifth season. The ice is cleaned at the end of every 90-minute session, so don’t dawdle getting out there. At 7,350 square feet, it beats the Rock Center rink for space and can accommodate 250 skaters at a time. Prices, however, are steeper than at some other rinks. Parent-and-child skate lessons and hockey classes are offered. Afterward, you’ll find plenty more to do in the family-friendly Battery Park City neighborhood. Adjacent Brookfield Place has bathrooms, hot cocoa, and snacks, as well as Santa and plenty of rotating art and winter fun come the holidays.

Bank of America Winter Village at Bryant Park – Midtown West
FREE admission; skate rental prices and hours vary. NYC’s only free-admission rink attracts massive crowds. The best time to go is early in the season, before Thanksgiving, when the weather is mild and the lines are short (or at least, shorter). Don’t even try to go during holiday break. Later in the season, stick to weekdays before 5pm and early weekend mornings if you can. If you really can’t stand to wait, spring for the Express Skate package, which includes entry, skate rental, and bag check for $30. Afterward, grab a hot chocolate or choose from a selection of comfort foods at the Public Fare Snackbar, then hit the always-popular holiday shops. Bring your own blades and locks for a truly free skate session.

Ice Rink at Rockefeller Center – Midtown East
Every tourist’s favorite rink opened for the season October 7. Despite its popularity, three-hour waits aren’t always the norm—just when the Christmas tree is lit. Skating early or late in the season is fun and easy—if expensive. (Even during off-season, it’s by far the priciest rink in the city.) It accommodates just 150 skaters, hence the wait, but some believe it offers one of the most charming, intimate skating sessions, smack in the middle of NYC. Sign up for one of the special packages such as breakfast with Santa for an extra-special holiday treat. There are plenty of family-friendly sights in the area, too.

The Standard Ice Rink – Meatpacking District
The Standard hotel’s 3,000-square-foot ice rink opens in mid-to-late November, depending on the weather, and it’s a surprising gem. Despite the swanky hipster scene at the bar, you’ll find loads of local kids on the ice, wobbling around the small rink. Rent or bring your own skates, and there are usually skate buddies (little penguins and other support racks) available to help newbies find their footing. The atmosphere is friendly and low profile. Parents can even grab a drink at the bar and mingle rinkside if the mood strikes. The rink makes a good destination after an icy winter walk along The High Line or a visit to the Whitney.

Wollman Rink – Central Park
This is the iconic NYC skate spot in Central Park. Though it is perpetually crowded, every family should skate here at least once. Try to arrive at the start of the first session or right after school to get a few spins in before the hordes arrive. A moonlit, post-dinner skate is always fun, too. You’ll be rewarded with one of the most famous views of Midtown, not to mention a perimeter of pretty, possibly snow-dusted trees—as well as tired kids, ready for bed. Lockers are available for a fee. Note: It’s cash only.