Friday Follow Up – Grateful for Winter

This week has been about hot Tazo tea and hot Evolution Fresh simmers and soups…

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Evolution Fresh hot apple juice too….

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And even MORE hot Tazo (Earl Grey) tea!

Red Cups and Red Lips

With the Seattle weather being the typical rainy and windy mess it is in winter, no wonder we are the home of HOT GOODNESS like coffee & tea from Starbucks!

Speaking of Winter… at the beginning of this year, shortly after meeting Christine Hall online, another Starbucks “insider” introduced himself to me online, Winter.  I’m pretty sure most everybody that reads this blog knows Winter and his challenge to visit every Starbucks store around the world (termed “Starbucking” in his documentary).  Winter has been taking this challenge on since 1997 and you can read all about it on his website Starbucks Everywhere.

Luckily, this year I also had the pleasure of meeting Winter in person a couple of times since he was on a contract position in Portland, OR for awhile.  We first met at a favorite place of mine here in Seattle… Roy Street Coffee & Tea.

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Not only has Winter been a great inspiration for my Starbucks year-long challenge, sending me photos of places he has been (especially of the foods which are very different Internationally!), keeping me in the loop about Starbucks interests he has found, but he has been a good online friend that I hope will stay in touch with my future challenges…No matter what, as long as Starbucks stores are still opening around the world, you will have plenty to follow with Winter’s challenge.

I am grateful to have met and to now know Winter and his amazing dedications in life!

Red cups are here…. and so is Winter.  Let the holidays commence.

Weekend Wrap Up – Treat Receipt Style

This weekend was filled with plenty of activity…good thing those treat receipts kept my explorations going all weekend long!

First, I’ve been watching construction on my new (walking distance) Starbucks store which is so exciting!  I’ve never thought about all that goes into a Starbucks store before this year, but with all the different locations around the world that I see through my eyes or the eyes of partners/customers, I have a LOT more appreciation for all the design and work that goes into them now!

The latest Seattle store proved that to me on Sunday… so follow on down this post to see more about the new store and what’s happening all around us with Starbucks if you stop to take a look around….

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With the oldest at the farm, my Saturday was spent all day and night with my youngest…just the two of us!  We spent a good portion of the morning relaxing but then went for a swim at our community center and then enjoyed the last outdoor movie of the season in our garden.

The bonfire was burning and s’mores were a melting (at least for the little one)…and WAY too many chocolate pieces were eaten!!!

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That is probably why there was a lot more watering and playing in the garden going on than watching of the movie!

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Sunday was a busy one that started with meeting Winter and his filming crew for a National Geographic show at Kerry Park.

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It was great to see Winter again, speak to him at least for a little while and meet the NatGeo team and hear about their show!

From Kerry Park I just had to take advantage of the beautiful afternoon and get a Beechers cheese & Salumi plate at Roy Street Coffee.

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While enjoying one of my favorite dishes I get a text from Winter who’s right down the street taping at the new Broadway & Pike Starbucks store, with news that a wonderful Tazo partner, Cody, was now at this newest store.  Of course after enjoying my Roy Street Coffee dinner I knew I had a #TreatReceipt in my pocket just waiting to be my last of the summer season, so why not make it at the new store!

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The store is simply beautiful!  From the carefully restored antique doors at the entrance, to the restored wood tables and up cycled lighting, to the open-case, Parisian-style baked goods display…no stone was left unturned when putting this complete Starbucks package together!

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I learned a LOT on Sunday!  From Winter & National Geographic’s crew, about the focus at Starbucks to get new stores to be LEED certified, to the Broadway & Pike’s restored, up cycled and Eco focused design.  I especially loved learning about the new, yummy “Evolution Harvest” treats for Starbucks stores that are of course inspired from the brand I love, Evolution Fresh, and soon to be coming to a Starbucks store this fall!

When NatGeo was interviewing me for Winter’s show they asked if I was tired of the Starbucks menu 7 months into my challenge?  I get asked that question (and what next years challenge will be) a lot now.  But with all I’m surrounded with already, and now with even MORE goodies like “Evolution Harvest” coming out soon…. I ask you how I EVER could get tired of the innovative, amazing options from the brilliant minds at Starbucks?

Everywhere I turn lately something new is being introduced that’s part of a bigger, grander plan…and these new options are all starting to support each other in the Starbucks stores too, not just as individual, stand-alone concepts anymore!

This year’s theme has been coming into view for me for months and is now being supported in every direction I turn…. Community!

So with that, I tip my hat (or should I say Frappuccino?!) to you, the partners of Starbucks because whether it is Howard’s grand design or a collaboration of minds at corporate, there is no grander word, no grander concept in the world than the building of and the establishment in a strong, beautiful community that cares like this Starbucks one I see all around.

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Thanks for the #TreatReceipts, the (sometimes too many to keep my girlish figure!) Frappuccinos, the new push towards more LEED & Eco living that we all HAVE to implement into our lives, but mostly…thanks for this community Starbucks.

Community is what the world continues to fight for, what we dare to dream big about, what we all continue to be inspired through and (I believe) is at the core of every humans desire to belong and be apart of something bigger than ourselves in some way shape or form.

Starbucks, take it from a person who’s been living your brand for over half a year, a sense of community is what anybody will see everyday, through and through if they are stopping to take a look around…and yours dear siren is growing into a community that is nothing short of spectacular!

Weekend Wrap Up – Winter in Summer

This weekend my youngest and I went to his first movie theater experience.

We stopped by the Starbucks drive-thru for our popcorn and frappuccino ahead of time…

Bubs with Starbucks at first movie

Just look at this Frapp… so lovely!

Movie Starbucks Frapp

What a great time we had all weekend in sunny Seattle!  Going to parties, community festivals, parks, waterfront beaches and of course one of my FAVORITE Starbucks drive-thrus… South Lake Union!  This trip was made even more pleasant with the help of a very nice partner, Sterling.

Westlake SLU Starbucks

I’ve been playing around with different combinations of Starbucks items all weekend, this Evolution Fresh Pomegranate juice mixed with Tazo White Cranberry tea was excellent!

Tazo and Evolution Fresh Summer Drink

Then on Sunday I had a wonderful afternoon talking to the Starbucks legend himself, Winter, at a favorite place of mine Roy Street Coffee and Tea!

I was pleasantly welcomed into the store by the friendly partner Coral and the whole environment at Roy Street Coffee and Tea seemed active and wonderfully upbeat, representative of the glorious sunny day outside!

Roy Street Coffee with Winter

Winter and I had great conversations about his history with Starbucks, the menu choices they offer around the world, his love of Scrabble, music, the arts and many more wonderful things about my new Starbucks friend!  Just touching upon his amazing journey so far definitely educated me, but really piqued my curiosity into this world of being a coffee connoisseur.

I left our afternoon thinking about what a blessing it is to be able to meet these amazing people during my challenges.  I am so lucky to get to know them, learn from their experiences and not only apply it to my own life but to share these adventures with you!

Thank you Winter for spending your afternoon with me, I hope you accomplished your goals for the day and your Seattle trip.  I also hope that we keep in contact because your wisdom of coffee is inspiring to my growing awareness of its culture and appreciation… a focus for my last 5 months and possibly one that will become an everlasting part of my life after this year!

Friday Follow Up – Summer Starbucks Drinks

We now have officially been surrounded by summer in the Seattle area for weeks (well, besides today) and my drink choices are feeling it!

First I had to try out all those Starbucks Discoveries that I purchased last weekend on our farm trip.  Which turns out are a great addition to Starbucks Iced Coffee VIA packets!

Iced VIA and Starbucks Discoveries

And because I always have to balance out my Starbucks coffee with some great Evolution Fresh juices and Tazo tea (Teavana you are on my serious radar now) I also started making my custom “Arnold Palmers” with a variety of choices between the brands.

Perfect mixing for these hot summer days!

Tazo and Evolution Fresh blend

This is pretty much what you feel like when you blend Starbucks products together to customize your summer drinks… rays of sunshine lighting up your day!

Starbucks Sunshine

And for all those that gave me a heads up about the Starbucks BOGO this week, and all those that “thought of me” when they got theirs… I hope you enjoy(ed) your Starbucks mouth-watering choices this week!

Next up… treat receipts, YEAH!  Keep those cool summer offers coming Starbucks, WE LOVE THEM!

Starbucks BOGO
I know the Seattle area is going back into a sunny weekend, but it’s kind of a Winter-y looking weekend for me!
I look forward to meeting this Starbucks legend in person!

Have a great weekend everybody!