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Changing Hands Bookstore

Day 9/90 – WordTasting Tour

Day 9 of the 90 Days of Awesome is in the bank! What made today awesome? The WordTasting Tour stop at Changing Hands featuring Colin Wright, Josh Wagner, Skye Steele, and Joshua Fields Millburn of The Minimalists!

Two Pasty-Pale Minimalists - with Joshua Fields Millburn

Two Pasty-Pale Minimalists – with Joshua Fields Millburn

I became familiar with The Minimalists at the beginning of my journey with minimalism. I came away from their talk at SXSW buzzing with ideas for de-cluttering my life. I saw them again during their tour following the release of Everything That Remains, which inspired me even more. I also ripped off Ryan Nicodemus’ packing party idea when I moved to my new home.

The WordTasting Tour was a fantastic experience to connect with other minimalists and aspiring minimalists and to meet others in the minimalist community – like Colin Wright. He moves to a new country every 4 months and lives like a local to learn new cultures and see the world from a different perspective. Each of these authors is an incredible wordsmith, and they were accompanied and complemented by Skye Steele’s music. This guy is wicked talented.

With Skye Steele

With Skye Steele

I walked away from this event inspired, not only to be more dedicated to minimalism (remembering that things are just tools and focusing on the activities that add value to my life and allow me to add value to others’ lives) but also to my writing. Joshua Fields Millburn has an eloquent saying: “Love people and use things, because the opposite never works.” But I think the most profound thing I heard at this event came from a poem by Josh Wagner: “Shut your mouth and scream.” As a writer, this line spoke to me. It reminded me to quit dicking around and do what I need to do, say what I need to say.

In case you missed it: Day 8 of the 90 Days of Awesome – I almost met The Namby Pamby!

I’m Having Fun This Spring – Who’s In?

One of the challenges of being a business owner is your days are unstructured except for the structure you impose on them yourself. And since there’s always something that needs to get done in the business, it’s easy to get trapped behind my laptop for hours on end, even on the weekend. I realized that I need to schedule in some fun so I get a much needed re-charge at time and enjoy all that the Phoenix area has to offer.

Photo by Devon Christopher Adams - used with permission

Photo by Devon Christopher Adams – used with permission

I’ve decided that I’m going to have more fun this spring and make an effort to get out to more events. Here’s what’s on my to-do list this spring.

I also want to learn to do some new things this year. I think I’ll sign up for some lessons this spring.

  • Skateboarding – I have a feeling that I might be good at this.
  • Golf – I want to learn how to hit a golf ball so I can go to the driving range without making a fool of myself.
  • Trapeze – Santa got me two trapeze lessons. This is going to be awesome!

There’s one more thing I really want to do this spring – take a day trip to Jerome. I’ve heard it’s a charming place. I think it would be fun to go up there for lunch and to wander around the shops for a few hours.

So that’s what’s on my fun to-do list for the next few months. If there’s anything you want to do with me, let me know!

My Favorite Things 2013

Oprah used to do a “My Favorite Things” show every year so I decided to do the same, but without all the freebies. Sorry.

I reviewed my calendar and Yelp reviews from the past year and here’s my list of my favorite things. Everything on this list is something I use or do and enjoy. I’ve not been compensated in any way for including anyone in this post.

Working Out
2013 half marathon pre raceFavorite Phoenix Area Race: P.F. Chang Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon

Favorite Place to get Running Shoes: Runner’s Den

Favorite Place to Work Out: Arizona Canal

Favorite Device for Sore Muscles: The Stick

Favorite Place to get Fixed when I Break Myself: Endurance Rehab

Food
Favorite Doughnut: Buttermilk bar from BoSa Donuts (open ‘til 10pm)

0702131205Favorite Mexican Food: Jordan’s

Favorite Greek Food: Greektown

Favorite Indian Food: The Dhaba

Favorite Dessert for Lunch: Yogurtland

Favorite Food Truck: Jamburritos

Favorite Dessert Food Truck: Mamma Toledo’s

Favorite Ice Krem (Phoenix): Churn

Favorite Ice Krem (Scottsdale): Sugar Bowl

Favorite Place for Late-Night Eats and Work: Gay Denny’s

Life
0511131339Favorite Dog Park: Margaret T. Hance Dog Park

Favorite Place for Shirts with Custom Verbiage: Brand X Custom T-shirts

Favorite Site for Shirts with Original Artwork: Threadless

Favorite Snuggle Wear: REI Yoga Pants

Favorite Person for Fixing my Sore Body: Thomas Porter

Favorite Shop for Music Geeks: Central Music

Favorite Bookstore: Changing Hands

Favorite TV Show: The Big Bang Theory

Favorite Reality Show: Deadliest Catch

Favorite Place to Go When I Really Need to Escape: Firefly Room at the Phoenix Art Museum

No Pants Ride 2013 - Photo by Joseph Abbruscatto from Flickr (used with permission)

No Pants Ride 2013 – Photo by Joseph Abbruscatto from Flickr (used with permission)

Online
Favorite Webhost: Dreamhost

Favorite Social Media Platform: Twitter

Favorite Podcast: Savage Lovecast

Favorite Online Cartoon: Foamy the Squirrel

Favorite Site for Travel Suggestions: Roadside America

Favorite Site for Everything Else: Reddit

Events and Activities
Favorite Flash Mob: Improv AZ’s No Pants Light Rail Ride

Favorite Community Event: Ignite Phoenix

Favorite Place on a Friday Night: ASU Women’s Gymnastics Meets

Favorite Phoenix Geek Event: Phoenix Ultimate Geek Smackdown (PUGS)

Favorite Place to see Who’s Who in the Local Zoo: Local First Arizona Fall Festival

I hope you’ve enjoyed my list and perhaps it’s inspired you to try some of my favorite things. 😉

Indie Week 2013 Recap

I had an awesome time during Independents Week 2013. Over 300 members of Local First Arizona offered 20% discounts to patrons with Golden Coupons. Here’s the rundown of every place I visited last week.

ZiaStop #1 – Zia Records
Apparently if you went to high school in the Phoenix area in the 90’s, Zia Records was your go-to place to buy and sell movies and music. The shop was huge and had a massive variety of products, including a ton of pop culture paraphernalia. I wished they arranged the DVDs in the sales bins so you could read the spines and not have to flip through each case. I walked out with a copy of Argo – one of the movies on my “must buy” list.

Pink SpotStop #2 – Pink Spot Ice Cream
Anyone who knows me knows that I love ice cream (ICE KREM!) I’d never been to Pink Spot and Indie Week gave me a chance to check it out. They have a limited selection but a lot of creative flavors. I also enjoy the inviting quiet ambiance of the place.

Stop #3 – Urban Cookies
When I heard that Urban Cookies has gluten-free cupcakes I knew I had to check them out. Urban CookiesIt was a moist chocolate cupcake with vanilla buttercream frosting. It was heavenly. The shop is adorably tiny and the staff is super sweet.

Stop #4 – Write On’s
This stationary and gift shop has been part of my family for decades. It’s the only place I go for greeting cards. Indie Week gave me an excuse to stop by and stock up.

Stop #5 – Arizona Fun Services
Ever since I saw a head-to-toe spandex body suit, Write OnsI wanted one. My partner-in-crime and I have had several discussions about what types of flash mobs and pranks we could do with these. Arizona Fun Services is the only shop that has ever let me try one on. They didn’t have the colors we wanted in our sizes but they took our names and numbers and will let us know when they get their next shipment. This costume shop is huge with a wonderful selection of costume pieces. I will definitely be back.

Body SuitStop #6 – The Dhaba
I fell in love with this Indian restaurant when I came here for lunch with Local First Arizona. I don’t know what most of the food is but it’s all delicious. We ate way too much and it was totally worth it.

Stop #7 – Melrose Pharmacy
I had heard of Melrose Pharmacy but I had never been here. It’s a charming little shop that is primarily a pharmacy with small retail area compared to other drug stores that are mostly retail and a little pharmacy.

0702131205Stop #8 – Changing Hands Bookstore
I love Changing Hands – the diverse book selection, the other items they sell, and their wonderful events. I rarely buy books because I usually check books out from the library if I only plan to read it once. However, when there’s something I want to own, it’s a great place to go. And I love that they buy used books. I have a stack of books from my minimalism project that I Duck and Decanterwill be bringing to them with the hopes to exchanging them for store credit.

Stop #9 – Duck and Decanter
I love Duck and Decanter. It’s a wonderful deli that has edible gluten-free bread and delicious sandwich options. They have excellent desserts too including amazing fudge. They have indoor and outdoor seating which makes it a wonderful place to enjoy a meal with friends.

Stop #10 – Jamburritos 
JamburritosI love food trucks. I think the owners are determined and make themselves stand out in wonderfully delicious ways. I’m looking forward to the weather cooling down so I can get back to Food Truck Friday without having to worry about melting. Jamburritos is my hands-down favorite food truck. The Cajun-Mexican food is awesome and the staff is so sweet. I made the trek out to the Downtown Farmers Market (which is also awesome) just to pick up lunch.

So that was my Indie Week 2013. I had an awesome time and it was definitely worth it to make my schedule work around these awesome deals. If you used your Golden Coupon somewhere in Arizona this week, I’d love to hear about it.