Small Joys to Sip

I feel like my last few posts have been a bit heavy so I thought I’d dedicate this post to something a bit more light hearted. Something I’ve gotten into since the start of quarantine (a simple pleasure of mine you could say) to brighten up my day has been sparkling water. Honestly, I’ve always been a coffee drinker but with the onset of the pandemic I really started limiting my coffee intake because a) I don’t like drinking cold brew on a daily basis (so premade concentrates from grocery stores isn’t my thing) b) I don’t have a coffee machine and c) I wanted to limit the amount of times that I had to physically go in to a coffee shop (especially since I never used to even buy coffee daily even prior to the pandemic). But I wanted something I could just sip on through out the day, something with a bit more flavor then water. I had just started dipping my toes into sparkling water as my office used be stocked up on sparkling water. But I wouldn’t say I was completely addicted yet. When we started doing work from home I really missed having a tea or a coffee during the day so I thought sparkling water would be good compromise since I could buy it packs and boy it is. So below are my favorite flavors and brands ranked that I’ve tried thus far. I want to be completely honest though, I am wary of the fact that these drinks come in metal cans so I have slowly been trying to ween myself from drinking these from once a day to once a week but I 100% still enjoy them!

  1. San Pellegrino – This has been my favorite sparkling water so far but the only down fall to these is that unlike the others on the list, there is added sugar and they are not zero calories. But because of this they also have a stronger but yet still pleasant flavor. My favorite flavor thus far has been the limonita. I would give San Pallegrino #1 for overall taste. P.S. This brand is slightly more expensive compared to others on the list.
  2. La Croix – For me La Croix is #1 overall in terms of having a variety of flavor offerings, being on the healthier side compared to San Pelligrino, but still having a good taste. There’s no added sugar and it’s 0 calories. They have such a variety of flavors but my personal favorites are the passionfruit, tangerine and the pamplemousse (which I believe is a fancy word for grapefruit). The flavor I’ve tried and didn’t like was the razz-cranberry, it was definitely an odd taste not for everyone. I really want to try the limoncello flavor next!!
  3. Waterloo- Waterloo is pretty much on the same page is La Croix with it being 0 calorie, 0 sugar and naturally essenced. The only reason I gave La Croix the edge is because as superficial as it sounds I prefer the look of La Croix’s packaging as it just has less going on, on its can and Waterloo is slightly more pricey than La Croix for no reason I see fit. My favorite flavors from this brand are their black cherry, their mango and watermelon. I would say out of all flavors on this list mango was my favorite!
  4. Bubbly – Bubbly was my least favorite out of all the brands mentioned. Their cans felt noticeably smaller to me and they do add artificial flavors which was very obvious to me (and not in a good way!!) because the flavoring came off too strong. In all honesty, I’ve only ever tried the lime flavor but I’d think this would be a good flavor to try out first since most brands mastered this popular flavor. I don’t think I’ll be trying more from bubbly because I’d rather first try out more flavors from the other three brands. I was really disappointing on this one because quite a few colleagues of mine are bubbly fans, but personally for me I couldn’t get over the artificial flavoring.

But as the months get cooler, I feel like I’ll slowly get back into teas, coffees and hot chocolates so look out for another favorites then! To be honest, it’s the small joys in life that matter because they give you something to look forward to daily! I hope everyone has something that they look forward to everyday, as small as it may be πŸ™‚

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Little Joys Getting Me Through Quarantine

I just wanted to share a few things that have been getting me through this period in time. Just a couple of fun things that may lift your mood or give you ideas on what to do during your free time.

  • Sparkling Water -> I really like both La Croix and Waterloo. My current obsession is the La Croix passion fruit flavor. Also love the Waterloo mango, watermelon and black cherry flavors.
  • Online Chess, NYT Daily Crosswords, Scrabble, Puzzles (Jigsaw Puzzle App)
  • Reading (I have a blog post of books I’ve read during quarantine and what I’m planning on reading) -> Just finished Where the Crawdads Sing and I highly recommend!
  • Streaming TV: HBO Max, Netflix, Amazon Prime (I have blog posts with my favorites) -> Current favorites shows are Friends (HBO Max) and The Order (Netflix).
  • Podcasts / IG Lives
    • LadyGang Podcast-> It’s basically about three girlfriends that are discussing topics relevant to their day to day lives and they each have really funny commentary to add about each other. They also have guest speakers join sometimes as well, like authors and TV personalities.
    • Giggly Squad -> From Paige and Hannah from Summer House. They get real on how they’re feeling and discuss pop culture news. If you want a 45 minute distraction definitely tune into their IG live, which is typically every day!
  • Van Leeuwen’s Ice Cream -> I love the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Flavor and their dairy-free option is really good too (it has a coconuty flavor to it cause I think they substitute it with coconut milk)! Also sold at Wholefoods!
  • Dark Chocolate -> I’m addicted to sweets but I know that if I have a ton of sweets at home I won’t have self-control and will eat all in one sitting (especially since we’re basically home all the time now). With dark chocolate, it satisfies my craving for sweets but doesn’t force me to want more sweets for the rest of the day, and I feel less guilty for eating it cause it’s on the healthier side (so I see it as a win-win). My current favorite brand is Theo!
  • Getting fresh air (of course while wearing a mask) -> It clears your head after being indoors all the time, plus you get some sunshine!
    • Bike rides
    • Walks
  • Naps -> Sometimes we need a mid-day refresh!!
  • Journaling -> It’s a great way to get what’s on your mind out!
  • Rummy -> My first “adult” card game I’ve learnt during quarantine, many rules and you need to be on your strategy A-game but worth it for the fun!!
  • Cleaning / Decorating -> When I got notice that I would be working from home, I decided to give my space a bit of a refresh since I figured I would end up spending a lot of time here. I was on budget so I didn’t do too much just added a few pieces to my room a bit more “homey” – a rug, pouf and bed table. I’ve also done a closet refresh and have cleaned up spaces in my room that I’ve neglected. Trust me, you’ll feel so accomplished after doing this!
  • Listening to Vintage Music – The French Cooking Playlist on Spotify is one of my go -to’s!
  • Online Classes – At one point I felt like all I was doing with my days was working my job and then watching Netflix. I felt like I was wasting my time after work, so I decided to do a bit of learning. Whether it be improving your technical skills or just learning about topics your was curious about, I think taking a class is great use of time. I of course, still make time for alot of Netflix!
    • Masterclass -> Love Kelly Wearstler’s class on Interior Design!
    • Udemy -> Taking an Intro SQL class that’s great for beginners like me, looking understand the fundamentals.
    • LinkedIn Learning -> Will be taking a class on Google SEO, as this seems very interesting to me! Be on the lookout, sometimes employers will offer discounts or have subscriptions to these kinds of learning resources. Also, comes with your premium LinkedIn membership.
  • Working Out (I have a blog post on all my go-to free workouts) -> Currently obsessed with the Body by Simone classes.
  • Something creative – This period in time has really allowed me to explore the creative side of myself. I used to put off these things as “I don’t have time to do this” but have always been curious about trying. Well this was the perfect way to keep myself busy, feel productive and try something new!
    • Baking (See my blog post of things I’ve tried baking) -> Most recently I baked brownies with walnuts, which came out tasting decent but the texture was more crumbly then chewy. So I have some work to do!
    • Calligraphy -> Bought this intro book and this starter pen set. Would highly recommend both if you’re a beginner looking to learn!
    • Procreate -> Trying out new graphic design techniques with this tool! Procreate is relatively easy to learn on but they have so many features and functionality, it took me time to and I’m still learning to how to make use of everything. (I have blog post on a few designs I’ve created).
  • Making lists of all things I want to do post-Covid -> Lol I created this list to give me hope, and to know times will get better. It gives me something to look forward to!
  • TAKEOUT – I think this has been my number one favorite! Food is what brings me joy and ordering takeout makes me very happy. Support your local businesses and thank you to all the employees that are working during this time!
  • Coffee – This is something I definitely look forward to when I wake-up. Whether it be cold brew or whipped coffee (I still am into it!) it gives me an extra boost of energy and I love the taste!

This is definitely not a favorite, but in some ways it has been helping me cope with the quarantine. Although it may come as a surprise and is debatable if it’s helpful, personally for me it has been. And its crying. I don’t want to lie and say everything has been smooth sailing and quarantine has made me a better person. I want to be honest and let others know who might be feeling the same way, that this uncertainty and the decrease in normalcy and human interaction does have side effects. For me personally its resulted in quite of few tears and that’s okay, its just a coping mechanism. I just let them out because the feeling after getting a good cry in is like having a burden lifted off your shoulders. I want to keep it real here and although it’s good to focus on the positive things, it’s all also equally as good to be in touch with your feelings and not to ignore them.

I’ll end on a positive note from a quote from one of my favorite books.

β€œTomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it… yet.”
― L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

P.S. Another one of my favorite pass times is virtually hanging out with friends. But I’ll be dedicating a whole entire post on new ideas to liven up phone calls or Facetimes with friends.

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