an update

your girl is truly awful at keeping up with this sweet corner of the internet. 

No excuses but I do feel that it is far better to post inspired content then to just post to post (that’s what I tell myself whenever I see the wordpress icon – approximately 100x a day.)

Despite that, here I am. the whole school here has come and (practically) gone and I’m sitting in a Starbucks on 26th street and feeling excited to chat about year one.

This (school) year has simultaneously been the best and the worst. I was expecting adjusting would be hard but I had no idea it would take practically the full school year to truly begin to find my groove. change has never been something i go through cheerfully (pretty sure this is a common sentiment for humanity) but God has been so good and kind to me as my whole world has shifted and changed and morphed into the life I lead today.

This city is bitter and soft. Dark and light. Good and bad. Everything all at once, including my experiences of it. But I feel I have reached a point spiritually and emotionally where I can talk about the good and bad that coexist 24/7, without romanticizing either. In time, I’ll try to update you on the whole shebang: dating, finding a church, working through loneliness, not having a vision in a place filled with impassioned dreamers, budgeting (ish), finding friends, studies, all the things. I am so excited and overjoyed that I can say (basically, 2 weeks off. I’m definitely counting) that I have freshman year under my belt.

Today, reader, I remind you of this sweet sentiment that has carried me through the trivial and difficult: “No matter what I am feeling, God is working.”

I hope you are well, reader. I have missed this outlet tremendously but haven’t had much to say. I think I do now.

Happy Thursday – may it be filled with dappled sunshine, creamy coffee, and fresh blooms.

XX-

BrittanyCharis

for now, hop over onto my youtube and check out my semester 1 video montage:

P O S T C A R D S from N E W Y O R K  | V O L U M E 1

weekly round-up / nyc

happy labor day! i hope today has been as laborless for you as it has for me. with exception to an errand i ran this morning, i’ve spent most of the day catching up on keeping up with the kardashians in various sleeping positions. i have no shame because i only have hulu for a month. holler.

KUWTK shenanigans aside, yesterday marked another week longer of being in the city. weeks here are full, bustling, and filled: there are adventures on every corner, lining every street, filling every stop and it makes for weeks that are brimming with delight.

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 in which i discover that the first day of classes synonymous with buying gelato:

Monday marked day one of classes here at the FIT and when they wrapped up for the day, I still had time to kill and a belly to fill. I headed out to fifth to try out what is now my favorite gelato place: eataly. I devoured the salted caramel cream before I could snap a picture of it but I did get to enjoy these sites while I filled my belly with sweetness.

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view while eating

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my backyard in the golden hour

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in which i finally have a full day out and use it window shopping:

my usual day-off activity in this city is going onto fifth, are we surprised? it stretches on endlessly with so many places to explore, i’ve really only mapped out 1/8 of the street. there’s so much more discover. i spent most of the morning/afternoon in club monaco. the store is complete with a satellite store of the strand, a florist, and of course the infamous toby’s estate coffee.

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bookstore

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talk about beautiful. florals & the prettiest clothes

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toby’s

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to die

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MET up with a few mishaps:

after a few miscommunications, I found myself on the Upper-East Side with nothing to do. So I embraced my inner serena van der woodsen and enjoyed what the beautiful museum had to offer and I was not disappointed. currently at the met, there is a conde nast feature, chronicling technology in fashion. It displays renowned  designers from around the world, Givenchy to Dior to Chanel. Manus x Machina is a jawdropping exhibit. 10/10 rec.

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spotted

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one of my favorite views

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afternoon shadows

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givenchy; this was my most favorite gown. ugh. jawdropping.

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i’d like one of each, please.

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saturday roaming

my roommate had a visitor so i set off to explore by myself. i ended up going to Ralph’s Coffee on the second floor of Ralph Lauren on (SHOCKER) fifth ave, near the rockefeller center. it was lazy and delightful and i spent the overcast saturday morning, journaling with a pretty mocha.

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delight

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art

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sunday afternoon & the sun’s a-blazin:

after church, lunch, and grocery-shopping, we were all ready for a little chill time. we headed down to madison square park and enjoyed some music in the park, complete with chubby little toddlers bopping along to the barbershop quartette.

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peek-a-boo baby

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rows

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laborless monday morning:

and finally, this morning.

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broadway

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$2 lattes are the best thing.

$2 lattes (count me in) from the coffee shop down the road, journaling, and walking around our (not so little) backyard. i love this city so much. the hustle, the bustle, the music of a thousand dreams.

next week? i’m (so) ready for you.

xoxo,

brittanycharis

first impressions / nyc

nyc has been an adjustment. between learning to understand the grid that is the city streets, wrangling the insanely high food tax and figuring out what times to be in or out of our little oven of a room, i haven’t really had a moment to really process where i am and what i’m doing. if i’m being honest, i still feel like i’m on vacation: life here for me has made 7 days feel like one incredibly long one, there’s no stop. you wake up in the morning and half of the world is already seated at a desk in the heart of the city, while you groggily wipe sleep from your eyelids. and when you pillow your head at night, half the world is still running around in circles, finishing up last minute tasks and some are even just beginning their night at the bar down the street. regardless, manhattan is charming. tough and hard to crack, a little rough around the edges and a little hard to navigate, but so delightfully charming.

i made myself a tourist this week, exploring all the must-sees, jamming in as many excursions as possible into our endlessly free summer days that are coming to an end tomorrow. high-line was one of my favorites.

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remodeled from an old railroad track, highline stretches across the city heights, providing beautiful look outs on each avenue and street from Ganseevort street in West Village to the 30th street on the outskirts of Manhattan.

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in addition to high line we have eaten gelato in chelsea, devoured shakes and fries in madison square park, explored 5th ave and gone to coney island. each offered their own private experience of the city, creating a well rounded atmosphere dubbed “the concrete jungle.”

it has been such a privilege and a blessing to be able to discover the streets that create my dream, but with each beautiful moment has come a lot of hurdles.

anxiety is one of them. being surrounded by so many people all the time is one of the most magical aspects of this place but it can also be the most challenging. i have found that “alone time” is hard to come by and have found a newfound respect for headphones. living in nyc with anxiety means: always having a water bottle, gum, and prayers flying all the time. The Lord has been very sweet to me, and brings his aroma into my days often. but the anxiety is still there, lurking, and sometimes even just going for a walk is hard. regardless: taking a few steps despite my minds best efforts has been the most rewarding. beautiful moments happen on the other side of fear.

so all-in-all, nyc has been exactly what i thought it would be. challenging and exciting, hard work and beautifully easy, it is a strange oxymoron, a contradiction in and of itself, and walking down each avenue and street has decoded just a little of its riddle. i am so excited about these next few months, these next few years, this season of my life that will be spent decoding each avenue as passions drift by worn on the sleeves of those who walk.

 

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xoxo,

brittanycharis

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a few favorites:

dorm tour / fashion institute of technology

one of my most favorite parts of the college experience thus far was planning, designing and implementing our dreams in our dorm room. i scored a double apartment (complete with a mini kitchen and moderately sized bathroom). thus far it has been a bit of an adjustment simply because it is close living, which for everyone is a very difficult transition to make. regardless, having a spot that we can call home, a place that feels like home, has made the difficult transition a little bit easier. i thought i would share the nooks & crannies of our general “room” area with the products detailed. the process of moving to chelsea has been an interesting one, but oh so rewarding as every day provides a new adventure. so, reader?

welcome to my crib.

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my bed

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peekaboo bathroom

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roommate’s bed

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. . . . . .

my dorm faves:

towels || throw || pots || fur throw

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xoxo,

brittanycharis

north bakery / cafe daze no. 5

i bring coffee into 98% of all conversations. a lot of people are annoyed by this BUT occasionally, i come to find that the person i’m talking to is a coffee-lover and they often will then refer me to their favorite local spots.IMG_0817.jpg

n o r t h  b a k e r y / providence, ri

location | nestled in a thickly settled residential area, north bakery blends in with the surroundings. it’s sign glows fluorescent neon in the window, but most would just attribute it to a hipster couple living in an apartment. wrong. it’s just a 2 minute drive from white electric coffee and totally off the beaten path BUT it’s one of the sweetest bakeries i’ve been to thus far in our excursions.

the atmosphere | laid-back, closely knit. the seating is scarce as it seems to put more emphasis on their bakery items and less on their drinks. however, there were extra chairs scattered throughout that could be brought up to the additional 2 bars, if need be. what made the atmosphere truly unforgettable were the bakers. rolling out buttery dough and mixing together fruit compotes, cutting squares for pastry items, they busied themselves within the view of the customer.  it was so much fun to watch product being made whilst sipping our coffee, and the smells that erupted from the oven were second-to-none. my mouth is watering just thinking about it.

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the prices | incredibly reasonable. i paid 2.75 for a 16oz. cold brew. their espresso drinks were pretty average in their price ranging 3-4 dollars based on size.

the food | we went for mid-morning coffee, so unfortunately i didn’t try the food. however, seeing that it is a bakery and the smells were so utterly delicious, i don’t think you should expect ANYTHING short of amazing. i’ve gotta go back and try those scones, oh my my.

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the coffee | exceptionally delicious. it only came in one size, but 16 oz was plenty. the brew itself was smooth and strong, the perfect pair. adding cream didn’t make it taste watery which is a major plus and i didn’t notice the taste of separation between the bean and water that often accompanies cold brew. ultimately, 2.75 was a great price for such a delicious cup of coffee. it was refreshing and strong and kept me caffeinated until dinner!

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final thoughts | though north bakery emphasizes baked goods their drinks by no means pale in comparison. it’s the perfect place for a grab and go or a solo trip for working but doesn’t necessarily accommodate social outings. however, being in the area that it is in, there is plenty to do once the brew has been acquired. i would definitely recommend this cafe to anyone in the providence area as it was cheap and delicious, whilst offering the ultimate hipster cafe scene. in my book it was a 9/10!!!

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happy drinkin’, new englanders!

xoxo,

brittanycharis

. . . . . . .

wanna see where we go before the blog does?

track the hashtag:

#cafedazewithjandb

to keep caught up with all our latest excursions!

bolt coffee co. / cafe daze no. 4

 

a little backstory & how we found them | travel sites and pinterest have never been more frequented by my sister and i. in our intense and extensive searching of the internet, we stumbled across gorgeous shots of a tiny little shoppe in downtown providence. it was unanimously decided that we had to check it out. the following morning we headed into the city to do some shopping and stopped to enjoy the cafe beforehand. totally worth it.

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b o l t c o f f e e c o / providence, ri

the location | nestled in the first floor of the dean hotel in providence, bolt coffee provides an ecclectic, closely knit layout that’s located just off the beaten track. it is only a short walk from providence’s mall but the community it tailors has a range that is far greater than just shoppers. businessmen, students, tourists, and ] locals all frequent the shop since its location lands right in the middle of downtown providence. street parking was easy to find BUT all the available spots required charge (the meters accepted credit/debit cards as well as coins, which was definitely an added bonus!)

the atmosphere | very mod. most of the decorations were black and white with exception to the large purple/pink neon letters that read ‘fine’. overall it was very mellow and laid back, the barista was friendly and the service was efficient. the persona of the cafe made for a very enjoyable and vibey experience. in other words, it was totally rad.

the prices | if there’s anything that has become a constant in these cafe explorations its this: the smaller the cafe, the pricier the brew. bolt coffee definitely lives up to it. their iced coffee selection was limited to a cold brew which priced at $5 for 24oz. of coffee. espresso drinks ranged similarly from $4-6, depending on the size. and though it is to be expected of these companies, the pricey product does make their brand seem a little more unattainable.

VSCO Cam-6.jpgthe coffee | it leaned towards mediocre. the barista who served us that day was incredibly helpful and gave us all the info in regards to the beans they use. after learning where they came from and how they were processed, i was expecting a stronger brew. what i got was definitely exotic coffee: it had a smooth texture and was easy to drink, but you could taste the separation of bean and water. i drank it and the caffeine level was rocking but i’m not sure i would get the cold brew again since that definition is not something i particularly enjoy! i definitely want to go again and try a latte – i’ve heard that they’re the thing bolt offers that is out of this world!

final thoughts | the atmosphere was totally killer and i’ll definitely go back to try some of their other menu items. though the product wasn’t as good as i perhaps was expecting i DID enjoy my visit to this cafe and i would gladly go back! on a ten point scale, i would probably give it a 6.5 (but again, that is entirely based on the iced coffee i tried!) i’m hoping to visit again soon and i’ll update this when i do.

until next time, coffee drinkers!

xoxo,

brittany charis

. . . . . .

wanna see where we go before the blog does?

track the hashtag:

#cafedazewithjandb

to keep caught up with all our latest excursions!

T E A S & J A V A S / cafe daze no. 3

a little backstory & how we found them | our family frequents the area around the cafe & we’re always seeing the little black & white storefront on our way to the starbucks a block down. i have been there before but jackie hadn’t & so we decided to include it on the “cafe tour.”

T E A S & J A V A S / providence, ri

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the location | it is in the same vaccinity as thayer street but is more domestic & laid back than the one-way iconic street in providence. the retail within the area is limited to a few restaurants, starbucks, a yoga studio and 2 bookstores (one used, one new). street parking is pretty easy to find and for the most part is free. since today was a sunday, our parking required a little walk to get to the cafe but seeing that it is spring, we didn’t need to complain.

the atmosphere | parisian. it’s a black and white color scheme with fun chalkboard menus. very much like a patisserie that you might find in france. the decorations are minimalistic, bright, and there’s a lot of natural light which further adds to the “city vibes” of the cafe. a very welcoming atmosphere, perfect for pretty much anything, whether a date night or a grab-and-go, it makes for the ideal instagram picture (priorities, people.)

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the prices | food-wise it’s inexpensive. breakfast sandwiches are about $4, baked goods $2-3, their gelato (squeals) $1 a scoop, and their bistro items about $4-7. coffee is a bit more expensive. their espresso drinks are 4-7 and their classic brews & iced coffee range from $2-4, both depending on size.

the food | delectable! with the prices being what they are, it’s pretty easy to be ok with mediocre food but T&J definitely impressed with their food quality. fresh & made swiftly, it tasted gourmet. i left the store with a happy tummy (and wallet). 10/10 recommend. (side note: i have  just gotten gelato before and it is just as good and filling as any other menu item. the creamy deliciousness isn’t a common menu item for the area but theirs is so delicious & it doesn’t leave you feeling groggy and heavy, like ice cream does.)

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the coffee | i had already had an iced coffee (yay starbucks) that morning, so  i opted for an espresso drink. for $3.75, i was a little disappointed with how acidic the espresso tasted. it wasn’t as silky-smooth as most lattes are. it definitely appeals to those who like a stronger espresso drink, but i like a purer taste for my lattes. the pretty mug & foamed milk swirls (not quite latte art, haha!) made up for it, but it definitely wasn’t as decadent as some other drinks i’ve tried. i’m hoping to go back and try their iced coffee and see what that’s like, i’ll probably go back and edit this when i do and let you know how it is. ultimately, i probably won’t get the lattes again because they’re quite expensive and their taste doesn’t suit me well. would give it probably a 5/10 taste-wise.

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final thoughts | i enjoyed my afternoon lunch here! the atmosphere made me feel so content and though the espresso wasn’t my “cup of tea” if you will, it won’t keep me from going back. definitely recommended if you’re looking for a nice cafe in the brownu / thayer street area that’s not blue state coffee or starbucks.

yay for pretty places that make for pretty pictures and enjoyable lunches!

xoxo,

brittanycharis

. . . . . .

wanna see where we go before the blog does?

track the hashtag:

#cafedazewithjandb

to keep caught up with all our latest excursions!