The Ultimate Valentine’s Day Gift Guide

This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.com on behalf of Single Edition Media.

Are you ready for Valentine’s Day? Probably not. I feel like Valentine’s Day is the holiday that most people shop last-minute for. In life, you have people who start shopping for the holidays the second post-holiday clearance gets tucked into the back shelves. They’re a whole year ahead of the rest of us. Then you have last-minute Larry’s who descend upon the mall on Christmas Eve, their panic-fueled purchases creating a true hit or miss situation in the realm of gift-giving. But Valentine’s Day is a last-minute shopper’s paradise. And just because we’re all out here shopping a week or two before the “big day”, doesn’t mean our gifts have to be the standard crappy card and drugstore chocolates (though they have their place in the gifting hierarchy too). If you really want to show someone you care (whether it’s your single bestie or your spouse or – hey girl – yourself), I definitely recommend you check out this line-up of potential gift-giving gold:

Ultimate Valentines Day Gift Guide

I first discovered Edible Arrangements back when I was much younger, and I’ve loved them since. They make gifting – especially last minute gifting – an utter breeze. There’s no misinterpreting an Edible Arrangements new Edible Signature Chocolate Box. In my opinion, gorgeous fresh fruit and chocolates from master chocolatier Jacque Torres is the best way to say “I love you”.

Edible Arrangements

I honestly was blown away with this collection. This would be my dream Valentine’s (or Galentine’s) Day gift. Chocolate and a fruit bouquet? Yes, please! The fruit in my bouquet were all perfectly ripe, I loved how you can literally smell them. Good fruit give off the most sweet and intoxicating smell, and Edible Bouquet features great pieces of fruit. Did I mention the chocolate dipped strawberries? So, so good. By the way, procrastinators rejoice – Edible Arrangements do same day delivery! So what are you waiting for? Order here!

*Right now Edible Arrangements are offering The NYC Talon readers $10 off when you spend $39+ through 2/11/17! Click here and use code: ‘SAVE3966′.

Edible Arrangements BouquetEdible Arrangements2

Another excellent gift idea? A gorgeous new perfume! Fragrances are an excellent and personal way to say that you care. Get her/him their favorite scent or get them a Perfumania gift card so they can choose one of their own. Perfumania is your fragrance destination, they have the best selection – I ordered my Valentine’s gift from there three days ago and it arrived yesterday, so the shipping is amazingly quick. My pick is the Dolce by Dolce & Gabbana, which has gorgeous Neroli, Water Lily, Narcissus, Papaya Flower, and White Amaryllis notes. It’s addictive.

Perfumania Coupon CodeDolce1

Score 25% off your order AND get free shipping at perfumania.com from 2/1/17 – 2/14/17 with code ‘NYCTAL25’!

Really impress them with a new watch! The Casio G-Shock S Series GMA-S110CM-2A watch is an amazing addition to anyone’s accessory collection. This tough watch is a part of the G-Shock for Her collection, created for the woman that seeks a sportswear-inspired toughness to add to her modern style. Check out the entire collection here!

Casio Watch valentines day

As someone who comes from a family of artists, I’m no stranger to the Faber-Castell brand. They are the number one product to reach for among creatives, and it’s no wonder with 256 years of experience creating high-quality products underneath their belt. Give that person you love the gift of creativity. Host your own sketch and wine night or paint and wine night with these tools. My picks? The Faber-Castell CASTELL 9000® Graphite Design set, PITT® Artist Pen 8 count Wallet in Black, PITT® Artist Pen Studio Gift Box of 24 and Gelatos® Dolce 2 Gift Set. Check out more from Faber-Castell here.

The Gelatos are super exciting – not only are they available in 68 colors, but they work and blend beautifully with or without water. They even can be used on porous surfaces. Very cool.

Valentines Day Gift Guide

Last, but certainly not least, is the latest snack that I have found myself absolutely obsessed with – Sunsweet PlumSweets. Now I know studies have shown that eating prunes supports bone health, especially in postmenopausal women, but I honestly just snack on them for the flavor. PlumSweets feature diced prunes coated in premium dark chocolate. And before you ask – they are made with real fruit and absolutely no high fructose corn syrup. Sunsweet for the win! Bring this over for a romantic movie night, toast with champagne and enjoy!

Score your $1 Sunsweet PlumSweets coupon here and find out more info about this tasty treat here!

Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss Debut New Coconut & Almond Milk Creamers at Tasting Table Event

This past week I was invited to join Coffee-Mate & Natural Bliss at Tasting Table in Soho to get a closer look at their new plant-based creamers in action. If you don’t know, Tasting Table is basically a test kitchen and dining room – it’s where all the cool culinary action takes place, from video shoots to invite-only dinner parties. I’ve heard so much about it, that I was so glad that it lived my expectations. It is such a dreamy space and their team is amazing.

Tasting Table CocktailTasting Table NYC

Tasting Table & Natural Bliss put together a ‘Breakfast for Dinner’ menu that blew my socks off. There was a fun Acai Berry Bowl station, where Coffee-Mate’s Natural Bliss Coconut Milk Creamer was put to the test. I’d never actually had an acai bowl before and if they’re anything like the one I had at Tasting Table, then I can see why they’re so popular.

Acai bowl station at Tasting Table

We also had Citrus and Beet Salad, Mushroom and Soba Salad, Vanilla Almond Chia Pudding with Fresh Fruit, and my all-time favorite item of the evening – Almond French Toast.

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Because I was in a breakfast sort of mood, coffee was a must. Made with no GMO ingredients, natural bliss Almond Milk and Coconut Milk plant-based, non-dairy, creamers are deliciously smooth and creamy. My pick? Caramel Almond Milk Creamer. I’m a sucker for caramel anything, so this with my standard coffee is pure gold. There’s also Hazelnut Almond Milk Creamer, Vanilla Almond Milk Creamer, and Sweet Crème Coconut Milk Creamer (which made my acai bowl extra special).

Natural Bliss Almond Milk CreamerCoffee Mate Creamer

Avacado toasts, Carrot Apple Kombu Shooters, and Chickpea Panisse rounded out my evening of fun. And I can’t forget the Caramel Tres Leches Cake as dessert, which was perfectly done.

Tasting Table Avocado ToastAvocado Toast

Coffee-Mate Natural Bliss Almond Milk and Coconut Milk Creamers are now available at retailers nationwide – with the Hazelnut flavored Almond Milk creamer being sold exclusively at Target stores. For recipes and more information on the new natural bliss products, click here.

On Our Radar – Events in & Around NYC this Winter & Spring

This list will be updated continuously throughout the Spring of 2017. Keep coming back – or follow The NYC Talon on twitter (@KristaK2) for updates!

My Little Pony and Milk & Cookies Kids Spa and Salon Offer “My Little Pony Pamper-Me” Pop-Up Spa | February 9-17

The NYFW Pamper Me Pony Pop Up Spa

Little fashion fans and their parents are invited to get ready for the runway by stopping by the My Little Pony Pamper-Me Pop-up Spa at Milk & Cookies Kids Spa and Salon.  This unique My Little Pony experience will allow kids (and parents) to rest their hooves between runway shows, play with all new My Little Pony fashion-themed products and enjoy an exclusive menu of My Little Pony-inspired spa treatments, named after the Mane 6!  Services include:

Spa Services

1196 First Avenue (btw. 64th & 65th St.), more info here.

French Wink is opening the first pop-up concept Store dedicated to French lifestyle products | February 10-14

Valentines Day Pop Up Store NYC

French Wink is opening the first pop-up concept Store dedicated to French lifestyle products.

We selected the very best of France from the internationally renowned French brands to the new designers and creators not yet seen in the US. 
We will welcome you in our little Paris where you’ll be tempted by our unique selection of clothes, fashion and home accessories, kids products and gourmet food.

A lovely way to say it in French to your Valentine. 

Opening hours: Friday 10th at noon – rest of the days from 11am to 8pm, at 230 Mulberry Street, NYC.

More info here.

Meatpacking District Announces ARTech: Adventures in Art + Technology, A Pop Up Activity Center for Children | For the entire months of March & April

Art Tech NYC Meatpacking District

The Meatpacking Business Improvement District (BID) is proud to invite you to experience ARTech: Adventures in Art + Technology!

What Is ARTech?
ARTech is a two-month long pop-up activity center
comprised of STEAM-based experiential workshops, installations, and interactive moments for school age children + their accompanying adults.

What Is STEAM?
STEAM (Acronym, Adjective) – Of, or used to describe the disciplines of Science, Technology, Engineering, Art and Mathematics.

Who is involved?
ARTech is hosted by the Meatpacking BID and programmed by Children’s Museum of the Arts and the New York Hall of Science.

How Much Does It Cost?
ARTech is FREE and open to the public! RSVP is required for a timed entry slot.

When Is It Open?
ARTech will be open March 1 – April 30, Wed +Thurs from 3pm-7pm and, Sat + Sun from 10am-5pm, hours may vary.

What’s The Goal?
ARTech is designed to inspire young minds to explore and consider how these principles impact their daily lives and the world in which they live.

ARTech will enable exploration around problem-solving and creativity and seeks to facilitate experiential learning.

RSVP and more info can be found here.

Care Bears 35th Anniversary Celebration Collaboration with Sprinkles!

Care Bears will always have a special place in my heart, because – like most people my age – I used to watch the show when I was a kid. I distinctly remember my sister informing me that I was Grumpy Bear and that she was Cheer Bear, a comment which of course incited an all-out war. Ah, siblings. Actually now that I’m older I much prefer to be associated with Bedtime Bear, for obvious reasons. Last week Care Bears announced a partnership with Sprinkles, the first cupcake bakery, as a part of their 35th anniversary celebration. From January 5th-25th, Sprinkles will offer limited-edition Care Bears cupcakes and sweet surprises at all bakery locations!

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First of all, can you believe Care Bears is 35 years old?! What?! Second of all, what could possibly be sweeter than a cupcake with a Care Bear on it? Nothing. Nothing could be sweeter or cuter.

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I was invited to decorate a cupcake of my own, but after a clumsy attempt (alas, I am no cupcake froster) at it I mostly stood around texting pictures of the cupcakes to my sister. Sweet revenge. Also, if you’re looking for a real treat, try enjoying your Care Bear cupcake with some nice champagne. So, so good.

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In addition to limited-edition Care Bears cupcakes, whisper words will be revealed weekly on the Care Bears and Sprinkles Instagram pages with instructions for fans to redeem freebies and special goodies at check out. On January 21st, aka National Hug Day, big celebrations will take place at select stores where fans of all ages can partake in product giveaways and cheerful activities.

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Stick around for lots of sharing and caring and hugs from Care Bears with Sprinkles and other great partners in 2017!

The Ultimate Holiday Gift Guide (for last minute shoppers)

This post is sponsored by BabbleBoxx.

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Calling all last minute shoppers! If you haven’t checked off everyone on your holiday shopping list, then you’re not alone. Normally I’m really good about getting my shopping done earlier, but this year I’m still hunting for the “perfect” gift for some of my friends and family. I blame school, work, and the three weeks that I spent being atrociously sick. Luckily, my BabbleBoxx friends hooked me up with the ultimate package of perfect gifts. Any one of these items would make a great gift, so feel free tweet/share this post as a massive hint to the people you’ve been nice to this year. Or you could always choose the fail proof method of treat-yo-self (just saying, it’s fail proof).

quick-and-easy-holiday-gift-guide

When I was much, much younger I used to spot the Omaha Steak ads in the Sunday coupon adverts. I swore that one day I would order steaks from them, they looked amazing and special and I just knew they would taste so good. Fast forward to recently and I can honestly say they are some of the tastiest steaks that I’ve had. And my whole family – including my hardcore steak fan father – agree, they are super tasty.

omaha-steaks

The Tasteful Gift Gourmet Collection includes 2 filet mignons, 2 top sirloins, 2 boneless pork chops, 4 potatoes au gratin, 4 caramel apple tartlets, and 1 signature seasoning packet. You can gift this collection by way of a gift certificate. Omaha Steaks associates are super-friendly and cashing in their voucher is a breeze, shipping is included in this collection and can be enjoyed year-round. Honestly, if you know someone who likes steak or good food, this is a perfect gifting option.

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And that’s not all that’s a great gift for the foodie in your group of friends and family. The Vermont Brownie Company has an amazing Gourmet Brownie Sampler, I’m pretty much heartbroken now that I’m done with mine. With flavors like Espresso Dulce de Leche, Maple Toffee Crunch, Triple Chocolate Chunk, and (my personal favorite) Peanut Butter, this sampler is a definite win.

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Usually I have to beg my sister to make brownies, but now that I know that the Vermont Brownie Company makes such tasty brownies – well, let’s say I won’t be asking her to make hers any time soon. The Vermont Brownie Company’s brownies are all fairly large (you could probably split one between two people if ice cream is involved), and are dense without being cakey – pretty much model brownie material. The Company sources their ingredients from local vendors, which include the likes of Cabot Creamery, Callebaut Belgian Chocolate, Vermont Creamery and King Arthur Flour. The Vermont Brownie Company is offering 15% off to The NYC Talon readers when you order through this link!              

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Have a yogi in your family? Chances are you probably have a friend or family member who have perfected their mountain pose and downward facing dog. YogaJewelz Unity Om Pendant Necklace is great gift for the yoga lover (or “serenity now!” shouter) in your family. Promoting energy and strength – which, honestly we all use a lot more of – this petite pendant is a gorgeous piece for anyone’s jewelry collection.

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I love how intricate the design is, but also how simple and unobtrusive the necklace itself looks. A constant reminder to live an inspired life, YogaJewelz Unity Om pieces make a truly meaningful gift.

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Since I pretty much flat iron my hair every other day, the LumaBella Cool Mist Straightener is without a doubt the coolest beauty product I’ve seen this year. Why? Well this straightener delivers a conditioning treatment, via cool mist technology, to your hair as you straighten it. This technique helps prevent frizz, hydrate and moisturize strands, and delivers salon-quality shine. It’s pretty darn amazing and yes, I’m obsessed. Score 20% off your own LumaBella Cool Mist Straightener with the code ‘MIST20’ – this offer is valid through 12/30/16 so snap up yours now here!

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As someone who has respiratory issues, the Spire Wearable Wellness & Activity Tracker immediately caught my attention. I’ve always been curious about gathering data regarding my breathing behavior, especially whilst I sleep. The Spire stone works by sensing respiratory patterns to detect changes in your state of mind, then it delivers gentle notifications, insights, and suggested breathing exercises to help you unlock a more mindful and productive day.

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I’m always down for anything that will help to manage stress, and I love that the Spire is fully integrated into the Apple Health App and works with Apple watch and an Android App is also now available! And for a limited time you can also use this link for $10 off your Spire purchase  – which makes gifting even easier!

So what do you think, which of these items are making it on to your wishlist?

Gilt & Gilt City’s Black Friday Sales Reveal!

As the holidays loom ever-closer, most stores are rolling out their best deals and savings. If you’re like me and prefer to shop Black Friday sales from the comfort of your couch – with leftovers and pie within reach – then you’ll definitely want to check out what Gilt.com & Gilt City are offering for the holidays. You don’t even have to wait until after Thanksgiving! Starting on Sunday, November 20th through Cyber Monday on November 28th, you can stock up on coveted women’s, men’s, and kids’ fashions and accessories, chic home essentials, and unique Gilt City experiences, all at steep discounts! Gilt has given us the full schedule of sales to share with you! Check it out:

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Black Friday Countdown

GILT:

Sunday, Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday (11/20-23):

Extra 40% off on categories such as: Cashmere, Outerwear, Shoes, Designer Accessories, and Top Holiday Gifts (sales launch at Noon and 9 PM ET and run for 24 hours only).

Thursday (11/24):

Up to 80% off on categories such as: Designer Apparel, Designer Handbags, Designer Fragrances, Designer Sunglasses, Designer Shoes and Fine Jewelry; Bedding, Bath, Furniture & Lighting, Kitchen Steals, Barware and Luggage; Kids’ Clothing, Accessories, Gear and Toys (sales launch at 8 AM and Noon ET).

DOORBUSTERS on must-haves from Giuseppe Zanotti, Adrienne Landau, Max Mara and more (launch at 6 PM ET).

GILT CITY:

Thursday (11/24):

20% off Site-wide “Rush” from 5 PM EST – 10 PM EST


 gilt-city-sale

Black Friday

GILT:

Friday (11/25):

Up to 80% off coveted designer brands such as: Jimmy Choo, Cosabella, Australia Luxe, Moncler, Schutz, Tod’s, Paul Smith, Jacadi Kids, Nespresso and Dyson (sales launch at 8 AM and Noon ET).

DOORBUSTERS on must-haves from Missoni, Yves Salomon, Cuisinart and more (launch at 8 AM ET).

Win Your Wishlist Sweepstakes: Gilt recently launched a new feature where members can Favorite products (via the heart buttons) and create Wishlists from these Favorites in the Account section. Enter to Win Your Wishlist starting at Noon ET!

Saturday (11/26):

12 Sales running for 12 Hours only on seasonal merchandise. Sales include: Luxe Winter Essentials, Holiday Dressing, Designer Ties, Shoe Steals, Candles & Diffusers, Toy Time and more (9 AM to 9 PM EST).

GILT CITY:

25% off Site-wide from Friday, November 25th at 6 AM ET through Saturday, November 26th at 11:59 PM ET.


 gilt-city-holiday-sales

Cyber Monday

GILT:

Sunday (11/27):

Cyber Preview: Sales on Top Brands including Roberto Coin, Spanx, Ray-Ban, Diesel, Burberry, and Mini Melissa (sales launch at 9 AM and 9 PM ET).

Monday (11/28):

Cyber Monday: Sales on Top Brands continue with Charlotte Olympia, Salvatore Ferragamo Accessories, Cartier, John Varvatos, Villeroy & Boch, and Kidkraft toys (sales launch at 8 AM and Noon ET).

GILT CITY:

20% off Site-wide starting on Sunday, November 27th at 7 PM ET through Tuesday, November 29th at 11:59 PM ET.


 

Gilt offers so many exciting items, and Gilt City is such a great resource for new and exciting experiences – there really will be no shortage of gifting options!

The NYC Chocolate Project: Teuscher Chocolates of Switzerland

With two locations in the city, Teuscher Chocolates of Switzerland offers NYC tourists and locals some seriously decadent confections. Founded in 1932 in Switzerland by Dolf Teuscher, Tuescher’s signature offering are the champagne chocolate truffles – of which I have eaten many, many, many of. The chocolates themselves aren’t the prettiest things to look at, they’re simple, polite domes dusted in a powdery white sugar coating. But the quality and care put into creating these unassuming treats are obvious in the flavor.

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Teuscher’s champagne chocolates are made with Dom Perignon champagne (the good stuff! I feel like Ina Garten would approve), butter cream, surrounded by a dark cream ganache, then enrobed in milk chocolate. These rank up there with Grey’s Papaya hot dogs, good pizza, and good sushi for me. Pure comfort. My family has actually made a yearly tradition of walking to see the tree at Rockefeller center, taking a touristy picture, then swinging by Teuscher. There’s something about being surrounded by the chaos and glamour of the city while enjoying fancy chocolate flown in from Zurich. Then, of course, we brave the crowds and descend upon the problematic subway system (you did hear that they’re raising the fares soon? Crazy!).

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Don’t sleep on Teuscher’s other chocolate offerings though, these jewel-shaped gianduja truffles were silky and ideal. The Bailey’s Irish Cream and Pistachio truffles are definitely worth trying too. What’s really pleasant about Teuscher chocolates is that you can taste the intensity of the chocolate without missing out on the flavoring aspect. You taste the champagne in the champagne truffles, but the chocolate is good enough that you taste that too. There’s nothing quite as trying as a champagne truffle that doesn’t taste like it has even the remotest splash of champagne in it. You won’t experience such disappointment here.

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Though the $112 a pound price tag can cause general sticker shock, two champagne truffles usually cost between $8-9, which is not entirely astronomical considering that they’re flown in from Zurich and are comprised of quality ingredients. If you’re looking for an extra special gift, stop by during the holidays. These pictures are from the Summer, where they go all out on décor and specially styled boxes, so you can imagine the effort and imagination that goes into the holiday offerings. My family actually hangs a little Swiss doll ornament that we purchased at the Rockefeller Center shop years ago.

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If you’re looking to avoid the crowds, the 61st Street shop is much smaller, and much quieter thanks in part to their no cellphones rule (suggested by a sign posted on the door). Find more information about Teuscher, and to purchase your own chocolates, click here.

Must-Have Home Tech: Netatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor!

Chances are, you have the latest tech in your pocket. The newest phone, the latest laptop, netbook, tablet, and activity tracker. We adapt to new technology because they adapt to our needs, they make our lives easier – they change the quality of our lives. So when new tech like the Netatmo hits the market, I definitely sit up and take notice. With a seamless design and fully integrated app, Netatmo is the smart indoor climate monitor that takes four critical measurements of your indoor environment which can then be used to make healthy changes.

Netatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.com

Netatmo hosted media (including me), this afternoon for a Parisian baby shower, where we were able to have a first-hand view of the Netatmo Healthy Home Coach in action. The event was held at The Hudson Hotel penthouse – which has some of the prettiest event space in the city, and is simply gorgeous.

Netatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.comNetatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.comNetatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.comNetatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.com

We were joined by lifestyle expert Limor Suss, who shared with us the ways that Netatmo makes her life easier as a mom. The Netatmo Healthy Home Coach is slim and compact, allowing it to blend seamlessly into your nursery or home décor. What it does is use sensors to measure that space’s noise, humidity, air quality, and temperature. Lorni mentioned how babies sometimes wake up from their naps a little sweaty, well, the Netatmo climate monitor will notify the app on your phone when the room gets a little too warm or humid for your baby and offers suggestions on how to alter the room’s climate.

Netatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.com

The mobile app is compatible with iPhone iOS8 and above, as well as Android smartphone 4.3 and above. Alongside a handy dashboard, you can ask Siri the status of a rooms climate (it works with HomeKit), and the app also enables you to send notifications to whomever (babysitter, grandma, husband/wife, etc.) is at home and would be up to opening up a window when it gets too hot, or turning down the humidifier.

Netatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.comNetatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.com

Believe it or not, according to Netatmo most of us spend up to 80% of our life outdoors. So it’s definitely wise to invest in maintaining our indoor space. I really loved what the Netatmo representative said, “Stop guessing and start knowing”. Netatmo’s Healthy Home Coach is not just for babies – if you’re especially sensitive to humidity or would love to track the noise levels in your New York City apartment that might be causing you loss of sleep, the indoor climate monitor will definitely be useful to you too. Personally, I’m pretty excited to incorporate this device into my home, I love the concept of having access to information that will allow me to take more control over my home environment.

Netatmo Debuts Smart Indoor Climate Monitor | read more at nyctalon.com

The Netatmo Healthy Home Coach is available online here, as well as at Best Buy, Home Depot, and Amazon (ARV $100).

Interview: Katie Cassidy on NYFW #Hot2Adopt Feline Fashion Show & The Modern Cat Lady

This past week I was lucky enough to catch Katie Cassidy, star of CW’s Arrow and The Flash, between shows and speak to her about her NYFW Hot to Adopt Feline Fashion Show and Lounge with Fresh Step. In addition to a feline-inspired fashion show, complete with cats on the runway, the Hot to Adopt lounge also offered attendees an exclusive opportunity to adopt their very own feline right there!

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More information about the exclusive Hot to Adopt tee (as seen on Katie) after the interview:

The NYC Talon: Can you tell me a little bit about your Hot to Adopt Feline Fashion Lounge with Fresh Step, what can we expect?

Katie Cassidy: Yes, so you can expect feline inspired looks which I think is fun. I’ll be hosting the Hot to Adopt Feline Fashion event and fashion show with Fresh Step and I think it’ll be fun, I think it’ll be interesting. Obviously it’s for a good cause and you can actually purchase this shirt [pictured above, more details below] at freshsteps.com and part of it will go toward helping cat shelters all over the country, which is such a great cause and I’m excited to do it. I’m excited to see what people will wear, and actually we’ll be having cats walking down the runway which will be fun, yeah it’ll be very cute.

TNT: So I saw your post on TKC [Katie’s blog, post seen here], are cat ears something we’re going to see on the runway?

KC: Yeah, I certainly think so, I probably will wear some. I know there’ll be cat accessories that are very feline inspired, and it’ll be fun to bring that sort of awareness to people and get rid of that sort of crazy cat lady stigma. So we’ll be taking fashion and felines and sort of turning that stigma around. I actually just bought this clutch will a little cat face, it’s very cute.

TNT: Yes – I just saw that Kate Spade’s fall accessories have this adorable cat icon!

KC: Yeah and I just got this jacket from Stella McCartney that has this cat print all over it!

TNT: That sounds awesome. So, I know you have a cat…

KC: I do

TNT: And I think you have a dog, I’ve seen tweets with Felicia –

KC: [Laughs] To be honest with you I just love animals, and Felicia is my dog that I actually co-own with our stylist we have on Arrow, our hairstylist. Because when I travel, it’s hard when you have a dog or a cat, but a cat, obviously they can take care of themselves – but not for too long! But you can’t really leave a dog at home. Yeah, she’s been really fun.

TNT: I know you mentioned earlier about the cat lady stigma, what would you define as the ‘modern cat lady’?

KC: Hmm, the modern cat woman. Well, that’s what I think is so cool about this kind of thing because it’s bringing fashion and felines together and you have these, like as we saw on the cover of Porter magazine recently that there is a cat on the cover and I think adopting cats is more than just on trend, and we’re seeing them more on like cute clutches and shoes and it’s a sign of strong independent women. It’s something that’s cool, and again I love cats – actually [laughs] I want to get another one!

TNT: I’m a massive fan of your blog, are we going to see some What Katie Wore posts for Fashion Week?

KC: Yes! You certainly will, I have a photoshoot happening at some point tomorrow, I don’t know what time but yes you will.

TNT: Cats are kind of classified as lounging animals, if you have one day to absolutely lounge about and devote to rest & relaxation, what would you do?

KC: Everybody loves the spa, I feel like. Probably…I don’t know if I would just like have a relaxation day… I would probably go get a facial, or go to the gym, or not talk on the phone, or go on social media. I would probably just want to be by myself, you know? And order lots of pizza.

TNT: A girl after my own heart!

KC: Yeah – girl, pizza is my jam!

And that concludes my interview with Katie! She was so sweet, and I was very excited to interview her. She was in a rush, which was lucky otherwise I very well might have bombarded her with my embarrassing Arrow/The Flash Black Canary/Black Siren questions.

To purchase Katie’s exclusive Hot to Adopt t-shirt, check out FreshStep.com here.

I love Fresh Step’s commitment to encouraging and celebrating cat ownership, and this tee is honestly adorable. But there’s more! All through the month of October Fresh Step wants you to step out and declare your love of modern cat ladies (and gentlemen too!) by declaring “Feline Fashion Fridays” – cat owners cat show their love of cats by posting a picture of themselves with their cat to Fresh Step’s Instagram using the #freshstepcontest hashtag each Friday for a chance to win free Fresh Step litter, a $250 VISA Gift Card, and the limited edition #hot2adopt T-shirt!

Check out FreshStep.com for more info.

Why You Do Not Want to Miss the 2016 Food Network & Cooking Channel NYC Wine & Food Festival

Every year NYC eagerly awaits the hottest food event of the year – the Food Network & Cooking Channel New York City Wine & Food Festival. The NYCWFF is a four-day long festival featuring a variety of food related activities and as many food celebrities as you could ever want to see. You can rub elbows with Rachel Ray at her annual Blue Moon Burger Bash, or hang with the entire cast of Chopped at their rooftop event at Pier 92. Why stop there? With a plethora of food events, tastings, and seminars and panels, you really have a multitude of options – here are some of our favorites:

The Grand Tasting presented by ShopRite

If you only do one event, go to the Grand Tasting. Not only do you get a swag bag, but you also get to spend hours wandering around a 130,000-square-foot culinary wonderland. You’ll get to sample food from some of NYC’s finest establishments, sip wine & spirits from the Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits of New York portfolio, and collect cooking techniques and tips at the Samsung Culinary Demonstrations. Bring a friend, you’ll both have an amazing time. Tickets start at $185, get yours here.

Brunch

While the coveted Lobster Place Oyster Bash is sold out (we’re still crying over our lack of tickets), there are three other brunch events to choose from – Josh Capon will be hosting the New York Yankees Pinstripe Brunch presented by Delta Airlines, if you have a Mastercard then you’ll definitely want to check out Broadway Tastes presented by Variety, and if you’re on a budget A Brunch with Craftsman and Wolves hosted by James Beard Award-nominated Chef William Werner is only $85! Act fast, tickets sell out quickly!

Bank of America Dinner Series Curated by Chefs Club

So you’ve missed out on A Dinner with Ghetto Gastro hosted by Martha Stewart, but don’t despair there are plenty of other great dinners to attend. Explore Israeli and Middle Eastern culinary traditions at A Kosher Dinner with Elior Balbul, Eden Grinshpan, Amitzur More, and Yehuda Sichel, who are bringing kosher cuisine to the forefront of the NYC dining scene.

Other options include:

  • A Dinner with Melissa Clark, Marco Canora, Sara Jenkins and Marc Murphy – Thursday, Oct. 13th at 7:30pm, $250.
  • A Dinner with Floyd Cardoz and Anita Lo – Thursday, Oct. 13th at 7pm, $250.
  • A Dinner with Mourad Lahlou and Alex Stupak – Thursday, Oct. 13th at 7pm, $250.
  • A Dinner with Deuki Hong and Edward Lee – Friday, Oct. 14th at 7pm, $250.

Full listing here.

Hands-on Classes

nycwff-hands-on-classes

If you’re looking to get your hands dirty, NYCWFF offers some excellent hands-on events. You can learn how to add spice to your kitchen with Lior Lev Sercarz’ A Guide to the World of Spices, where you’ll not only create your own custom blends but you’ll also head out with an early release of Lior’s upcoming cookbook!

You can also learn how to bake bread with Zach Golper of Bien Cuit, roast like a pro with The New York Times’ Melissa Clark, and decorate cakes with none other than Sylvia Weinstock! Classes will take place in state-of-the-art professional culinary kitchens at the Institute of Culinary Education. For a full listing of hands-on classes, and to buy tickets click here.

There really are so many awesome events to choose from, and if you’re on a budget then definitely check out the $100 and under options as you’ll certainly find something to your taste there! Are you planning on going to the 2016 Food Network & Cooking Channel New York City Wine & Food Festival? What event sounds the most exciting to you? Let me know in the comments, or feel free to send me a tweet with the #NYCWFF hashtag!

*Photos courtesy of NYCWFF, from NYCWFF 2015*