Mavens | Sarah McLean + Cait Bourgault of Alpine Women Collective

If you were to ask my husband, Brian and I, what made us decide to pull the trigger and move to Portland, Maine we’d have to say, the creative/outdoor community and the people behind it. Not only that, but the close proximity to New Hampshire’s stunning White Mountain range, Acadia National Park and Baxter State Park allows us to stay outside and connected to nature. Plus, all the food and beer — just being honest.

The Alpine Women Collective was one of those organizations that made me feel excited and inspired to explore this place and meet the amazing people who call it home. Run by Sarah McLean and Cait Borgault, AWC is an all-women’s hiking group for like-minded ladies to sponge up the benefits of being outside together. That in and of itself is special but to hear more about their love for this project is something else entirely. So, I’m thrilled to share that with you here. If you’re someone who has always wanted to spend more time hiking, backpacking or adventuring outdoors but don’t know how or where to start, make sure you read all the way through for some wisdom on breaking through that barrier. It’s real good, I promise.


Continue reading Mavens | Sarah McLean + Cait Bourgault of Alpine Women Collective

Green Living | INSPIRED ACTION

Here at The Basic Goods, I write, share and create all different kinds of content.

Whether it’s an interview, a DIY or a featured shop, each piece underscores the importance of making sustainable and conscious choices. That’s why I’m taking a moment to say that the heart and soul of this blog is all about taking action.

If you’re reading this, you most likely have the ability to make powerful and impactful decisions that affect the environment and other people — seen and unseen. But let’s be real, we can’t assume that homemade bread or buying a reusable water bottle will solve our most crucial problems. The real power of these everyday things lies in shifting our perspective and being willing to change . As Yvonne Chouinard says in his film, 180 degrees South, simple living is more complicated than living fastContinue reading Green Living | INSPIRED ACTION

Q + A | How to Make a Feature Film

It’s not everyday that you get the chance to have a conversation with two feature-length filmmakers. Especially when those two filmmakers decided to buck the trend, ditch the industry standards and make their movie the way they want to do it.

While this is a little bit of a departure from our regular content on The Basic Goods, Kate and Daryl inspired me to get outside of my comfort zone and shake things up a little. After all, this blog is dedicated to telling stories of a life well lived and these two devoted filmmakers and hardworking creatives truly embody what it means to make things happen — no matter what.

So, without further ado, here’s my conversation with Kate Forsatz and Daryl Ferrara, filmmakers and producers of the upcoming feature film, Thre3bound!

Check out their website to learn more about Thre3bound, here.

Continue reading Q + A | How to Make a Feature Film

Impact | Gifts that Give Back: Jabonarte Soaps

What I love to do most on The Basic Goods is share with you all the talents, missions and big hearts of people I am lucky to call my friends. This one especially strikes a chord with me because Nia Salas, founder of the Costa Rican-based social enterprise Jabonarte, was my fearless leader on a volunteer trip to Costa Rica years back. The kindness, warmth and pride of the Costa Rican people who welcomed me and my father into their community made such an impression and today I’m deeply honored to have an opportunity to give back again.

Jabonarte is a social enterprise in San José, Costa Rica that designs, creates and sells artisanal soaps. By employing women who have survived domestic violence every purchase helps to ensure permanent jobs and safe futures for the makers and their families.  Continue reading Impact | Gifts that Give Back: Jabonarte Soaps

On Staying Connected

On Staying Connected- Crystals2

Recently, I took a trip to the snowy mountains of Canada. It’s a beautiful, natural and serene place — the kind of place where the silence feels good — where it sits comfortably both in, and around you. I ended each day watching a burning red sunset melt into the snowy horizon and woke up to the soft, yellow glow of a rising sun peeking through pine trees. The days were wonderful, despite them being busy, and I spent a good deal of time consuming good food, good wine, and great company.

When I returned back to my chaotic, everyday life, where the mountains are skyscrapers and the quiet is interrupted by wailing sirens and manmade noise, I felt rattled and frustrated by how difficult it was to stay in touch with myself and to maintain a bigger perspective. Sure, there’s a fleeting quality to experiences you have when you’re in a peaceful place like I had been: time felt as if it moved more slowly and because of that, things, life, people — I, had more time to settle in. Yet, despite the idyllic setting, the question of, how can you stay connected, etched itself into my mind.  Continue reading On Staying Connected