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Where Community Care and Self Care Meet

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There is a lot of talk these days, and hopefully most of the time too, about how investing our dollars in our local communities and small business has a benefit that is far-reaching. Supporting small local brands is key for all of us surviving the economic uncertainty of the current pandemic and while there are so many stories of lovely people doing amazing things, I decided to share three quick brand profiles here for you, to see three companies that are working really hard in our community to be great service providers in the changing times. 

Feel Good Guru catered our very first event in 2013 and Moira and I became friends. Small business owners tend to connect and want to create opportunity for each other and I am so impressed with her hustle and the care she puts into everything she does. Feel Good Guru recently moved into an expanded kitchen to keep up with their growing office lunch catering business and then....everyone started working from home. So she has quickly adapted to putting more focus on her meal delivery service and delivering healthy, nourishing, plant based meals to your home. So, you don't have to cook....and you can #stayhealthy & #stayhome ....and you can invest in a local business. That sounds delicious doesn't it?  If you would like to order from them, check out their Instagram & give them a try. Moira gave us a "perk"  loganfinley20 is good for 20% off your first order. 

Here's what she had to say when we caught up:

How did you hear about Logan & Finley? 
Hmm… How do we know each other? I can’t remember who came into whose shop first!  ( it was me!) Maybe you came into mine or maybe I first discovered you since we were Queen West neighbours for four years! I recognized right away Logan & Finley is a store I want to support based on your ethos of local, built to last, sustainable - everything is uncompromisingly curated with that mission. I’m a huge believer in creating the world you want to live in and every purchase we make is a vote for that world. Basically my entire wardrobe has been from your shop since you opened and it suits my laid-back high-movement lifestyle. 
What are you passionate about?
I’ve always been passionate about nourishing people. From my first little vegetarian restaurant in Banff in 1994 I’ve been in love with feeding people real food that’s good for your body, your mind and the planet. Of course these last several weeks I’ve been thinking a lot about business and the big scramble to pivot that we’re all in the midst of. My catering business fell off a cliff on March 10. Taking a deep breath and a step back what's strongly resonating for me through the uncertainty is staying true to my purpose. It’s not paying the rent but it is a step forward with intention which I believe is all any of us can do right now. This moment we’re in is an exercise in patience. I’m so grateful right now to be able to continue feeding people super healthy food and that purpose feels higher than ever. 
What Inspires you?
I take inspiration from all the people showing up right now to help. The bravery in the front line workers, everyone putting themselves at risk daily to help their fellow humans. Tough times don’t create character they reveal it and the gems being revealed right now are incredible. There’s a note in my condo elevator saying “Hey neighbours, here’s my number if you need groceries or a pharmacy run.” I’m getting support from old customers who have been loyal throughout the years now doubling down on their orders for “stay healthy at home” care packages for themselves and also for friends and family who are helping. People are literally creating the world they want to live in by the purchases they’re making in support of their small local businesses and by the way they’re showing up for each other in so many creative ways. I’m hearing nothing about competition right now. It’s all about collaboration. I’m here for this! 
 
I love that Logan & Finley is an oasis of hope on Queen West in and amongst the fast fashion shops and disposable everything economy. You've been ahead of the curve but I believe the demand is going to soar on the other side of this crisis for a more sustainable, more self-sufficient, more human-scale world. 
Stay healthy, stay home, stay strong! 
xoxoMoira
I met Ashley, from The Bare Home  at the Green Living Show and loved her straight-forward, warm and caring business approach instantly. I had been looking for a way to include refill options at Logan & Finley, but just hadn't found the way that I thought made sense for us, as so was thrilled to find The Bare Home as a solution. I know many of you are loving all the products and that we are still doing refills in glass jars and offering the 3L home refills as well. You are keeping me busy with your orders, and Ashley, or one of her family members that she has pulled in to help ( or do favours for retailers) quickly deliver us more product when we need it. I love it when I meet another business owner who knows the value of great customer care, effective and lovely product that you want to use and creativity and true partnership. This is what will get us all through this- working together!
Check out The Bare Home products we stock here: 
Hand Soap, Dish Soap, All Purpose Cleaner, Laundry Soap & let us know what we can drop of or have delivered to you! 
#stayhome #healthyhome springcleaning
And here's what Ashley shared when we "chatted":
Was there an ‘aha’ moment you recall where you realized you wanted to put
more effort towards sustainable living?
For me, It was more of a gradual realization that there was a better way. When I say 'better' I don't mean that in a high-brow kind of way but that I could change my consumer habits all while feeling good about my decisions and doing 'better' for our plant.  My husband Connor and I had the incredible opportunity of living overseas in Germany. Our 7 years abroad opened our eyes to this 'new' way to living, more walking (a 2 km walk to the market was normal), more open-air markets in turn supporting local producers all while lowering plastic and food waste. We were equipped with a 'small' fridge, what we would consider a bar fridge in North America. This suddenly meant we had to grocery shop every 2-3 days buying only what we needed, no more monthly runs to Loblaws on Lower Jarvis St. full of overconsumption and highly processed foods. It was hard to turn a blind eye to the benefits of this new way of life for us. it was our gateway drug. 
What excites you about choosing a sustainable lifestyle?
A couple of things;  teaching and educating our children on why we make the choices we do. Kids are so curious, making great conversation and quite frankly, it feels good instilling these values in them at such a young age. Next, the community that comes along with it. is it just me, or when you see another person filling their reusable product bag do you not think, 'you get me, we should be friends'?
If you were to give advice to others about embarking on a ‘greener’ life and
style, where/how would you tell them to start?
Gradually, don't overwhelm yourself or your wallet. Use up what you have at home first, then change out your products for Greener alternatives as you need them, try supporting local shops and producers over big-box, and enjoy the journey! It can be quite fulfilling! 
Herb Market Botanicals is a brand that had reached out to me, and many brands reach out, but this was one that intrigued me from the start. You all know I love good product and then, when it's a local brand with a great philosophy, incredible ingredients and a caring business owner - I am interested. Well the box of goodies that Melissa, quite honestly surprised me. She was so incredibly generous with what she sent for me to try. And then things started to get a little tough, business started slowing down and I needed to make the decision to close our storefront and it's a little hard to think clearly when you're in the middle of this and my approach is to not make any decisions I don't need to, until things become more clear. Melissa sent me a kind note to wish me well and when I saw it, I realized how much pleasure I had taken from her products during this challenging time and when I saw how kind she was, I knew that I wanted to work with her. So check out this incredible new line of luxurious natural skincare we have in the shop. It's all really, really lovely and don't ask me to pick a favourite. But once I started using her facial oil and gua sha, Fern kept complimenting me on my skin ( and she didn't know about my secret natural facelift!) And this....is a game changer too!
#selfcare #naturalskincare #ecoluxury
So welcome to the shop Herb Market Botanicals & Melissa, it's lovely to be working with you.
Melissa is a registered holistic nutritionist, who continued her education learning more about the importance of using pure and natural ingredients for both food and skincare. 
"Making responsible choices is what ties the Herb Market Botanicals' brand together, as we ensure every decision we make positively impacts the health of our planet. Each ingredient is sustainably sourced and stored in recyclable and reusable glass bottles and jars with eco-friendly packaging and shipping materials. As a vegan brand, we support the well being of animals just as much as we support environmentalism. When I was sourcing packaging for Herb Market, I knew it needed to be natural and as eco-conscious as possible. I was faced with many challenges along the way, and was shocked to realized the vast majority of options were made up of plastic or other synthetics. I was determined to find high quality options to convey luxury, but not compromise in environmental sustainability."

 

How would you define your lifestyle? 

Clean, simple… and plant-based. A lifestyle conscious about what I put in and on my body. I preach quality over quantity and try to embody the holistic lifestyle into my day-to-day as much as possible. Mainly meaning supporting the mind and soul, just as much as the body. Balance is important for this and I try to honour that as much as possible.

Is spending time in nature important to you? Tell us why! 

Totally! There’s nothing like a fresh morning run to wake you up. I suffer from bouts of anxiety every now and then, and I find getting outside and taking in the fresh air really helps settle the mind. I always end up feeling better when I return, from when I started. There’s also something so special about admiring a beautiful wild flower along the way, and reconnecting with nature.

What excites you about choosing a sustainable lifestyle? 

 

Knowing my day-to-day activities and contributions are not negatively impacting our precious planet, makes me feel good about what I’m doing. I also love the idea of using something made entirely from plants, as opposed to synthetics. 

 

Was there an ‘aha’ moment you recall where you realized you wanted to put

more effort towards sustainable living?

After watching more and more documentaries on pollution and the overall health of our planet, I became way more aware of everything. Packaging in the stores stood out, I started noticing plastic in my home, everywhere for that matter. I knew I needed to change and be more mindful of the products I choose to buy and support. 

 

If you were to give advice to others about embarking on a ‘greener’ life and

style, where/how would you tell them to start? 

Start by looking at the products you use every single day. Try to make a few small changes to your everyday habits. This can be investing in a reusable water bottle, some reusable cotton mesh bags for groceries, and reusable cloth bags for shopping. This alone cuts the amount of plastic used by so much. It’s these everyday changes that will really add up to make a positive difference.  

 

What are you passionate about? Where do you find inspiration?

I have always been passionate about health and wellness, and overall healthy living. From home-cooked whole foods, to natural DIY cleaning products. I’m all about natural remedies and herbal concoctions, since I value nature so much. This is why at Herb Market, we recognize the true connection between health and nature, and are committed to being entirely natural. Herbs and botanicals really seem to inspire me, both in the kitchen, and in my studio when I’m formulating skincare.

 

 How did you hear about Logan and Finley?

I was pleasantly surprised to find Logan and Finely on Instagram, while browsing high end boutiques and Toronto shops. I saw a thoughtfully curated selection of quality clothing and every day products, and fell in love. Something conveyed such sincere comfort to me. A rare gem I believe.

 

What place do you think Logan and Finley has in helping Torontonians & now the online world! live a more eco-conscious life and style?  

By providing quality, natural products that last and are practical, help provide ‘the path’ towards living a more eco-conscious lifestyle. It helps when you can shop with ease and put trust in a store to provide quality eco-conscious products.

 

Thanks to Moira, Ashley and Melissa for sharing their inspiration with us. I know every small business is working really hard to make everything work right now and we can choose to invest in our local brands and local economy, when we can use things we all sell. 

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