I finally figured out my New Year’s Resolution…..27 days late:
Write a “Smiling Buddha” journal. In it, I must write everything, as trivial as it may be, that I have done in a day that makes me happy because I never want to go a day feeling dissatisfied with myself. Therefore, I must either do something that pleases me everyday or be happy with what I do everyday.
“I spent an hour happily watching the latest episode of Grey’s Anatomy and forgetting about the philosophy paper I should write soon.” “I spent 10 seconds after an intense sequence of sit-ups feeling Jillian Michaels fit.” “I finally remembered to get free music from iTunes.”
And by the time it’s 2012, I will be like the Happy Dwarf from Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.
Okay, so this coffee shop is instant happiness. Belle Pastry. I love the feeling of Old Main Street in Bellevue. If you’re still looking for a Valentine’s Day spot, Old Main Street is so ideal. Gorgeous old-fashioned streetlamps and shops. Street of Fran’s chocolates, Amore chocolates, 520 Bar and Grill, and, my new favorite, Belle Pastry.
Ever since Italy, I have developed an unadulterated love of local coffee shops. Seeing a coffee shop (not Starbucks, or Tully’s, or Seattle’s Best) that has homemade pastries and is locally owned, makes me melt like a chocolate baking bar. But it’s pricey. Local coffee shops are pricey. Scratch that. All coffee shops are pricey. ($4 for a frappuccino in summer? Eat slugs, Starbucks!)
But the local coffee shops are unbelievably more worthy of your precious money. The atmosphere is completely different. No calling out “Short vanilla latte for Nata–..wait…Natalie!” No big groups of high school girls ordering their strawberries ‘n’ cream frappuccinos while wearing pink Uggs.
Instead, we have classical music playing, crisp white linen tables, and the pastries. Pastries…like the ones from Italy! Jam-filled cookies, tiramisu, chocolate mousse cake, apricot crostatas. And Europe came back alive for me. I remembered my first time in Paris and our fresh baked butter croissants and jus d’orange every morning. I remembered Italy and our counter top cappuccinos with tiramisu parfaits, when we were feeling extravagant.
And to think that all this lay in my beautiful city Bellevue. Unbelievably.
Go to Belle Pastry if you live here and sip a cappuccino on a cold wintry afternoon while trying some tiramisu.
You’re sure to fall in love too.