Monday, March 20, 2017

Practicing Mindfulness

We all want to make changes when a new year arrives. We spend the latter part of the year making to-do lists for the next, resolutions that we know we won't keep (I'm guilty of this too), and

But after a series of events caused me to lash out on those close to me, I had to take a step back and re-evaluate my actions, no matter what date the calendar shows. In the past few weeks, spending time with myself allowed me to discover mindfulness. I know it sounds ridiculous to discover something that should be innate, but being mindful in today's society is no easy feat. While you don't want to overanalyze mindfulness, which essentially would be doing the complete opposite, you do want to practice it.

We often to turn to practice of self-care - a luxurious bath or purchasing an inexpensive yet impulsive item - and while those certainly put us in a good mood, mindfulness goes a bit deeper than the external.

A few things you can do to help you on your journey: 

  • Meditation - quiet time allows us to reflect and center ourselves. 
  • Cutting Clutter - an overcrowded space leads to an overcrowded mind. 
  • Abstaining form prolonged use of electronics - yes, it's ironic seeing as though I am typing up this blog post on a computer. 

When I have quiet time, I like to reflect while drinking my Deliciously Matcha tea. Matcha is grounded, loose tea leaves in powder form that can be used in many different culinary ways. The most simple way is to boil warm to hot water and whisk the matcha in for about five minutes. Matcha is a pure form of green tea, much more potent and has higher levels of antioxidants. Some benefits include:

- Boosts metabolism and burns calories
- Detoxifies effectively and naturally
- Calms the mind and relaxes the body
- Is rich in fiber, chlorophyll and vitamins
- Enhances mood and aids in concentration
- Provides vitamin C, selenium, chromium, zinc and magnesium
- Prevents disease
- Lowers cholesterol and blood sugar

Aside from my outburst, I am getting older and trying to cultivate the life I want and what I envision that life to look like. As a Virgo, I am constantly worried about the future (a negative habit) and I am always trying to find time for everything in my life - friends, family, me-time. Burn-out for young millennial women is an increasing epidemic and I don't want to fall into that category. Being centered emotionally, physically, and mentally will make me a better friend, daughter, girlfriend, and a better person for myself. My journey to mindfulness and self-care has just begun and I hope you will join me. 

Deliciously Matcha is sponsored by Shopping Links but views are my own

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Spring Awakening with Uniqlo

Uniqlo Spring 2017 Denim
This post is sponsored by Uniqlo USA, but my love for their modern apparel is my own.

Gone are the days when we need a hog in the ground to determine the end of a season. Although New York's weather has been teetering on Spring temperatures for the past few weeks, it's not quite there yet. But instead of wishing for consistently warmer climate, I've partnered with Uniqlo get my wardrobe blooming despite what the forecast says. 

Uniqlo Spring 2017 Drape Collection
Uniqlo Spring 2017 Drape Collection

Uniqlo's Lifewear is synonymous with style, function, and innovation. The drape collection stood out to me - the color palette is on trend for spring, with blush and pastel tones in wearable silhouettes. I'm obsessed with the drape camisole and gaucho pants. For a girl of my stature, it's refreshing to find oversized pieces that don't dwarf me. 

Uniqlo Spring 2017 Drape Collection
Uniqlo Spring 2017 Drape Collection

The utility style of the drape washed shirt is perfect for lounging or dressing up. The drape fabric has a washed texture that is low-maintanece and easy for on-the-go. It can easily be worn as a sophisticated look when paired with pumps or brogues or dressed down with sneakers. 

Uniqlo Spring 2017 Denim
Uniqlo Spring 2017 Denim

Uniqlo's women denim is like an extra layer of skin. The unique fabric is breathable, perfect for warmer weather. For now, I'm layering the white drape camisole over a turtleneck for a fresh look. 

Uniqlo Spring 2017 Drape Collection

Visit Uniqlo's Spring 2017 style guides for more information on Uniqlo’s innovative approach to denim and apparel – and to purchase the latest styles yourself! 

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

National Margarita Day with Patrón

Today is National Margarita Day! (As if you need an excuse to drink tequila). I'll be celebrating with Patrón to find the best Margarita of the Year. I'm rooting for the home team below but I'm excited to try out all of the concotions- besides, you can never go wrong with Patrón. Interested in making your own libations for your National Margarita Day fete? Here are the top seven recipes of the year below. 

High Plains Drifter Margarita, Charred Pineapple & Sage 
Created by Shawn Gordon of Atlanta, Georgia, USA

1.5 oz Patrón Silver
.5 oz Patrón Citrónge Orange
2 Slices charred pineapple
.25 oz Yuzu juice*
.5 oz Fresh lime juice
.25 oz Simple syrup
+ 4 Sage leaves, 2 for garnish
+ 2 dash Lime bitters
+ Slice charred pineapple for garnish
+ Chipotle salt rim**

*If Yuzu juice is not available, substitute 2 parts lemon juice : 1 part orange juice.

**Chipotle salt rim
.5 Cup salt + .75 tsp dried chipotle powder

1. Char 2 pineapple slices and reserve one slice
2. Combine two pieces pineapple, 4 sage leaves and simple syrup in shaker and muddle.
3. Add remaining liquid ingredients and shake vigorously with ice to chill.
4. Double strain onto fresh ice in a chipotle-salt rimmed rocks glass.
5. Garnish with a slice of charred pineapple and two sage leaves.

Mumbai Margarita, Mango & Indian Spices
Created by Hemant Pathak of New York, New York, USA

1.5 oz Patrón Reposado
.5 oz Patrón Citrónge Lime
1 oz Fresh lime juice
.5 oz Fresh mango puree
.5 oz Spicy rose syrup*
+ Green chili-salt rim**
+ Dehydrated lime wheel for garnish
+ Mint sprig for garnish

*Spicy rose syrup:
Mix .5 oz simple syrup, a jalapeño coin and a dash of rose water.

**Green chili-salt rim:
Fresh green chilis, cilantro and a bit of garlic.

1. Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake with ice to chill.
2. Strain into a chilled cocktail coupe with a chili-salt rim.
3. Garnish with a dehydrated lime wheel and mint sprig.

Tiki Rita, Grapefruit & Tiki Spices
Created by Mindy Kucan of Portland, Oregon, USA

2 oz Patrón Reposado
.5 oz Patrón Citrónge Orange
.5 oz Fresh lime juice
.5 oz Fresh grapefruit juice
.25 oz Vanilla syrup
+ Splash Allspice dram
+ Grated nutmeg for garnish
+ Lime wheel and cloves for garnish
+ Hawaiian sea salt rim

1. Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker and shake with ice to chill.
2. Strain onto fresh ice in a Tiki glass that has been rimmed with Hawaiian sea salt.
3. Garnish with fresh grated nutmeg and a lime wheel pierced with three cloves and grated nutmeg.

Tropicante Margarita, Mango & Fresh Avocado
Created by Alexander Kady of Denver, Colorado, USA

1.75 oz Patrón Reposado
.5 oz Patrón Citrónge Mango
.5 oz Light agave syrup
1 oz Fresh lime juice
.25 Medium avocado
+ Short dash celery bitters
+ Short dash grapefruit bitters
+ Chipotle chili salt*
+ Sliced mango for garnish

*Chipotle chili salt: 
.5 Cup of salt : 1 T chipotle powder

1. Cut the avocado in half and remove the pit.
2. Scoop out half of one side and add to cocktail tin, mashing with spoon until soft.
3. Add liquid ingredients to the tin, use a spoon to release avocado from the side of the tin, and “dry shake” the contents (without ice) until the avocado is broken up and emulsified.
4. Rim a double old fashioned glass with chipotle chili salt* and fill with ice.
5. Add ice to shaker tin and shake vigorously until well chilled.
6. Use a mesh strainer to “fine strain” the cocktail into the iced glass.
7. Garnish with a ribbon of mango.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

NYC-Based Valentine's Day Ideas

There's no shortage of things to do in NYC but that also leaves you with too many options when selecting the ideal date night for the day of love. Using a little creativity, you can create the ultimate date night for the special day.

A Staycation

The Marmara Park Avenue room service

New York City has some of the most beautiful and luxurious hotels, no doubt but no need to break the bank to get your loving' on. Apps like Hotel Tonight*, Travelzoo, and Tablet Hotels offer discounted and perk-filled options for luxe but comfy stays. Breakfast in bed is always sweeter when it's complimentary. 

*You can use code AATWATER8 to get $25 off your first HotelTonight Booking (if you spend $135 USD+). 

Pool Hall Date

Society + Billards NYC

Unpretentious yet sultry, pool is a great option for couples (or Galentine's) no matter what stage of the relationship. Society Billards + Bar in Chelsea is a great option to skip the cheesy dinner and a movie date. Slip into something slozy (slutty + cozy) and head downstairs to the sultry pool hall.
The Woodsman Martini is a sexy sip, bourbon with peach schnapps topped with an orange peel. Snacks range from grilled cheese to croque-monsuier sliders. Bonus: happy hour is Monday - Friday 4-7 pm, so you can avoid the typical V-day crowds while saving a few bucks. 

Foreign Film Night

photo via filmmaker magazine

The Film Society of Lincoln Center is always showing at least one foreign film at any given time. Show bae you have some culture (and tolerance to read through subtitles for a few hours) with a foreign film night. Cute tip: if heading to dinner, match the cuisine with the origin of the movie. 

Brunch + Museum
Row House Harlem
Row House Harlem French Toast

Ah, brunchin' and museum hopping - two of my favorite things to do. If you're anywhere in Manhattan, there's bound to be at gallery or museum in close proximity to a dope brunch spot. In Harlem, Row House has a great brunch deal ($15.95 for an entree and drink) plus the stuffed french toast is heavenly. Just a few blocks away is the Studio Museum, a contemporary art museum dedicated to African-American arts and complimentary admission on Sundays!

So how are you celebrating Valentine's Day?