Meet Your Barista

Meet Your Barista: Jenny @ Longest

In Blog, Meet Your Barista, News // on February 20th, 2017 // by // 3 Comments

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If you’ve ever been to our Longest Avenue when Jenny’s working, you know you’ll be immediately greeted by a huge, contagious smile.

As her one of her fellow Assistant managers says, “Jenny is a beacon at our store. It doesn’t matter what mood she’s in, when she comes into work she is full of good energy. The customers and baristas both adore her. She’s picked up shifts at other stores and I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t feel better after having met her.”

So make sure you say hello to her next time you visit – especially if you’re ordering the Turmeric Chai!

 

Which location do you work at?

Longest Avenue. What, what, Highlands folks represent!

 

How long have you been working at HB?

Three whole years.

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Louisville native or transplant?

I’m a transplant. I grew up in Northern Kentucky, in a tiny town called Rabbit Hash. Ever heard of it? The mayor of the town is a dog! If you’ve never been, you should go, because that’s the kind of politics Americans need. Anyway, I moved to Louisville in 2012 for school, and I have loved every second here.

 

When you’re not working at Heine Brothers’, what do you like to do in your spare time?

I love being with my church family at Fellowship Louisville. My time here has been so enhanced by these really great people who have taken me in and surrounded me with the love of God though the gospel. Most of my time, however, is spent either at school, working on school, or thinking about school. I’m a counseling student at Boyce College at Southern Seminary, so you will often find me on campus, reading all the books, and engaging with students.

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What would your dream vacation entail?

Easy. Ireland. I mean, come ON. Sometimes, I’ll just Google images of Ireland when I’m feeling down. I am totally swept away by the beauty of that land. I imagine that sitting outside a cottage and looking at the scenery is as quaint as it sounds.

 

Finish the sentence: I couldn’t live without ______.

Honestly, my gut reaction is cheese. And I don’t think I’m going to amend that statement. Cheese really is the essence of life.

 

Best show you’ve seen here in town?

I’ve seen my favorite band, mewithoutYou, at Headliners a couple times, and each show was incredible.

 

Your most fearless moment or a time you pushed yourself the farthest?

Hm, good question. I would say I pushed myself the furthest when I changed colleges/career paths. In 2012, I was studying political science and English at UofL, and I really loved it. During that time, I watched a love one battle heroin addiction. He ultimately lost that battle, and passed away in 2013. Continuing at UofL and eventually attending law school seemed to be the most secure and financially rewarding thing to do. However, I knew then that my heart was for addictions counseling. I wanted to be a voice of compassion, encouragement, and relentless hope to people who, like my brother, had no voice left. I then transferred from UofL to Boyce to study counseling.

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Since you work at Longest and have close access to Carmichael’s Bookstore, do you have a current read you would recommend?

In shame, I do admit that it took me way, WAY, to long to do so, but in the last few months I began really reading Wendell Berry. His work is a joy. If you haven’t read his writing, let me tell you, you are missing out. Carmichael’s has a wonderful selection of both his fiction and nonfiction. I highly recommend you come see us at Heine Brothers’, meander your way into Carmichael’s, pick up a copy of Jayber Crow, and read it like the Kentuckian you are.

 

Favorite HB drink & why?

Heine Bros’ single origin coffees are so good. Honestly, before you order whatever it is you order everyday, check the board and see what we’re brewing. You’ll really be in luck if the sign reads Ethiopia or Peru. Those two are by far my favorite. But if I’m feeling a little crazy, I’ll order a Turmeric Chai. I don’t know who first combined turmeric and chai, but I owe that person my life. Okay, that’s extreme; maybe I just owe them my undying gratitude. Or maybe just a thank you will suffice. Anyway, thank you, creator of Turmeric Chai.

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Meet Your Barista: John Mike @ Shelbyville Road

In Blog, Meet Your Barista, News // on December 30th, 2016 // by // 2 Comments

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If you frequent our Shelbyville Road store, you probably recognize one of our long-time baristas,  John Mike. Not only is he friendly, thoughtful and fun to work with, John Mike recently made a volunteer trip to Gatlinburg to help with the wildfire relief efforts there.
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Which location is your home store?
My home store is Shelbyville Road in St. Matthews. #streetsharks
How long have you been working at HB?
I have been working at Heine Brothers since 2014. I was originally at the former Westport Village location until it closed. Upon closing, I was transferred to Shelbyville Road and have remained there since.
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Louisville Native or Transplant?
As much as I want to say Louisville native, I am a in-state transplant. I came to Louisville for school at Boyce College.
You recently went to Gatlinburg to volunteer for wildfire relief – what inspired your trip?
Volunteering to serve the people of Gatlinburg and Sevier County, Tennessee was definitely a eye opening experience. While this was not the first time I went straight into disaster, this one was different: absolutely nothing was salvageable. My inspiration behind going to Gatlinburg is my Christian worldview. Just as Christ died to serve us as an atoning sacrifice, how much more am I called to go and serve those who are in desperate need? Ultimately, that is what inspired me to go.
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Was there a particular story or person you met during your trip that really stuck with you through this experience?
There were a number of stories that stuck with me. Story of a family who was trapped, ran on foot down a ridge for their lives; a local D.J. who has lost thousands of dollars because of burned down venues and wedding cancellations; a small local Church that lost their sanctuary with ten members who also lost their homes; the faces of family after family coming to the donation pick-up center I was sent to filled with anguish as their “new normal” was confined to a shopping cart filled with donated goods. Any one of these stories alone can bring tears to one’s eyes followed by heartbreak. Yet, these are the realities for those who call Gatlinburg/Sevier County, TN home.
Is this the first volunteer trip you’ve taken?
No. Previously, I partook in mission trips with my local Church at home in central Kentucky. While we met physical needs where we could, we also worked to proclaim the Gospel message of Christ as well. As previously mentioned as well, I also participated in the Henryville tornado clean up.
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Are you planning any other trips this year (volunteering or for fun)?
The biggest adventure that I will be taking in the remainder of 2016 is home for Christmas. Looking to 2017, I intend on going back to Gatlinburg to aid in the clean up efforts as things will begin to shift from material/donation needs being met to recovery/clean-up efforts. There also might be some other trips throughout the next year. I’m quite the traveling person.
Do you have any goals for the new year?
Goals for 2017: *insert generic new year goals here that no one keeps*
What advice would you give your 16-year old self?
Do not give up on your faith & obedience in God. Having endured several close relative losses, death of a friend, various personal issues, and even a desire to want to do things completely alone since I was 16, my faith in God and the response of the Church has been the thing that has kept me alive. Even though I have been faithless, God has graciously been faithful to me.
And finally, what’s your favorite HB drink?
My favorite drink has to be the Miel. Just the right amount of sweet, spicy, and delicious.
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Meet Your Barista Lunchtime Poll: Christmas Edition

In Blog, Meet Your Barista, News, Uncategorized // on December 21st, 2016 // by // No comment

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Our baristas answer the question: What was the best (or worst) holiday gift you ever got as a kid?

Kody: “A new belt from my distant aunt that I later got spanked with for not appreciating my new belt.”

André: “Best: Having your birthday on Christmas . Worst: Having your birthday on Christmas.”

Josh: “A re-gift of cheap cologne”

Kalee: “Worst – a furby”

Ashley: “Worst: my family used to have one of those “steal a gift” game things where everyone brings something for like $10. I took home outdated computer software.”

Marina: “Worst: $1 check from Grandma. Best: Harry Potter Lego set of Hogwarts Express.”

Patrick: Worst: A set of scrapbooking supplies with a complimentary scent of cigarette smoke.”

Alison: “Worst: A goldfish that died the next morning.”

America: PS2 with all PS1 games. Best and worst.”

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Thank you for your donations to Gatlinburg Wildfire Relief!

In Blog, Coffee 101, Community, Meet Your Barista, Travel // on December 20th, 2016 // by // One comment

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Thanks to the generosity of our customers and baristas, we were able to reach our match goal of $500 and raised over $1350 with the help of your donations! The money you helped us raise will go to The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee, which we chose for a number of reasons.

The Community Foundation has created the Gatlinburg, Pigeon Forge and Sevierville Emergency Response Fund that gives grants to victims and nonprofits who are providing on-the-ground immediate assistance AND long term services. The unfortunate reality of wildfires is that the effects are long lasting; people are displaced from their homes and some have to essentially start from scratch.  Being able to give the money as directly as possible to the residents and people affected was important.

You can find out more about The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee’s wildfire relief efforts and donate with them here: http://www.cfmt.org/

One of our barista’s, John Mike, was moved to go volunteer to help distribute donated goods to those affected. You can read about his experience and look at his photos taken in the area in his blog post below:

 

Mountains. Space Needle. Aquarium. Cabins. Wildfire.

All of these words perfectly describe Gatlinburg, TN with the exception of one which is obvious. The small, tourist Tennessee town was taken by complete surprise when a wildfire exited the Great Smokey Mountains National Park, speeding down the hillsides with grander due to 80+ m.p.h. winds. The wildfire, striking Gatlinburg on Monday, November 28th following its inception on November 23rd by two juveniles, has already caused upwards of $500 million in damages. Most of the structures that were destroyed were homes of people that lived in the city leaving them with the clothes on their back and nothing else.

There is much to be done. After hearing the news and knowing people who almost lost their lives in an attempt to escape from their resort, I knew something had to be done. The news broke in under a week after the fire that Heine Brothers’ would be teaming up with Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee to take up cash donations for the victims. The amount of support that has been shown at our cafes has been astounding! While seeing the cash pour in from behind the counter, I still knew that something more had to be done to help this town. That was when a roommate and I signed up to volunteer and drove straight into the area of disaster. Little did we know what we would see or hear about.

For our volunteering, we were sent to a distribution and pick up center for all the goods donated. The amount of goods donated is on another level. The country is uniting to support the people of Sevier County and have shown that with the five warehouses that are now full of goods. While the support is great, seeing the families pour into the facility to pick up the pieces of what they now call a “new normal” is heart breaking. Family after family, child after child, relative after relative now find their whole life confined to the contents of a shopping cart full of donated goods. While volunteering, I personally got to interact with people who had story after story of relatives that lost their house and business, employees that were now unemployed, families relocating across the country, and small Churches destroyed along with members losing their homes. Keeping a straight face during all of this was difficult to do. Every moment I could I would step away to breath for just a moment. You simply do not realize how big a disaster is until you see the people it affected right before your eyes.


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Keeping all of this in mind, what can you do? Well, glad you asked! The Community Foundation of Middle Tennessee is still accepting donations via their website which are still very much needed. But, I would encourage you to go a step further and volunteer to go to Sevier County and help. You can sign up to do just that. There is a massive need for volunteers to just sort through the donations to ensure their efficient arrival to the fire victims. Similar to how we love to keep Louisville weird with our local businesses go to Gatlinburg and spend your money at their local businesses. The continued tourism to the area will aid tremendously to the recovery of the town. Plus, you will be spending time in the mountains! Who doesn’t love a Smoky Mountain getaway? I beseech you to go to Gatlinburg to volunteer, visit, or even donate. The people of Gatlinburg will appreciate you for it.

Smoky Strong. Mountain Tough.

 

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Meet Your Barista: April @ Main St.

In Blog, Meet Your Barista, Uncategorized // on December 2nd, 2016 // by // No comment

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Have you met April from Main Street, yet? April is new to our downtown Louisville store, and also the co-owner of SnoWhat Snoballs!

Erica, a fellow barista who nominated April, said, “April is amazing. She is a business owner, always takes care of other people and has THE BEST customer service in all of downtown. I love working with her and today she bought me lunch!”

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Which location is your home store?

Main Street.

How long have you been working at HB?

Just a few months.

Louisville Native or Transplant?

Transplant. I grew up in Eastern Kentucky, and moved to Elizabethtown when I was 11.  I moved to Louisville in 2000 for college and never left! There’s a bumper sticker that says “I’m not from Louisville but I got here as quick as I could!” – I couldn’t agree more.

You also founded SnoWhat Snoballs – which look awesome! Tell us about your business.

Awe, thank you! We’re a mobile food truck serving gourmet shaved ice. We have signature flavors that are homemade using real fruit, cane sugar, and no high fructose corn syrup or artificial coloring.  We also offer classic flavors such as Cherry and Blue Raspberry for the kid at heart and those who really can’t live without a blue tongue! Right now, we’re still pretty small, operating mostly on the weekends at fairs, festivals, and local events, such as the Buy Local First Fair, and Forecastle. We’re also available for private events, corporate parties, weddings, and birthdays! We create custom flavor profiles, even alcoholic “boozy” balls.

So what exactly is a snoball?

I’m glad you asked! The reason we call our icy treats snoballs is simple — our ice is fluffy just like snow! It’s not your typical snow cone.  Our ice practically melts in your mouth and absorbs the real fruit syrups we drizzle on top.  As an added bonus, we use toppings like sweetened condensed milk, caramel, and sprinkles.

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What inspired you to start your own business?

I have always wanted to own my own business! I’ve worked as a manager for a few companies, and while I’ve loved the jobs, there are certain things that are just out of my control.  Being able to make decisions in your business and having the ability to be creative in ways that a corporate job just won’t allow. I love all the little details of ordering products, and building relationships with customers and vendors. If I see a friend and want to step out of the truck and give them a hug, I can! My friend and business partner, Jessica Bledsoe, moved just outside of New Orleans for a short period in 2010. Snoball stands are everywhere in NOLA, and after trying one, we both knew, we just had to bring snoballs to Louisville. After a few years of planning and saving, and the invaluable Kayla Allinger joining the team, SnoWhat served its first snoball in April 2015.

Do you have a personal favorite snoball flavor?

Green Apple will always hold a special place in my heart, but our homemade caramel apple made with granny smith apples, cinnamon and other spices, and drizzled with creamy caramel is my new favorite.

What advice would you give to other entrepreneurs starting out? 

Get up and start! I have the tendency to over-plan and overthink.  After Jessica and I purchased the block ice shaver, her husband Adam said, “Well, go make some snoballs!” We jumped in with an event that weekend and haven’t looked back.  It’s definitely been a learning experience.  Find mentors! I talk to everyone that is willing to have a conversation with me.  Their advice is golden.  Always take more than you think you’ll need. Lastly, it may sound cliche’, but be prepared for failure. My first test batch of our Watermelon Basil was probably one of the most disgusting things I’ve ever tasted. I kept trying and now have a recipe that our customers love.

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Do you have any exciting holiday flavors or events planned?

We have recently started experimenting with snow cream! I use to make it when I was a kid, and it dawned on me that I have an endless supply of snow at my fingertips. We tested it out at Yelp’s Art in Action event and the crowd consensus is that we must add it to our menu.  We’re also preparing winter flavors such as eggnog, sugar cookie, and cranberry for private parties and corporate holiday events during our off season.

What do you enjoy doing in your free time when you’re not working at HBC or SnoWhat?

Cooking, creating, and cuddling with my animals.

And finally, what’s your favorite HB drink?

That’s probably the hardest question of this interview! I’m going to have to say the Fair Trade Mayan Mocha, but followed very VERY closely by the Beekeeper and the Banana Chiaberg.

Interested in booking SnoWhat Snoballs for an event this season? Contact them at hello@snowhatlouisville.com, and find our more on their website: www.snowhatlouisville.com or through social media: @SnoWhatLOU.

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Your Baristas Get Lit with the Louisville Free Public Library!

In Blog, Community, Louisville, Meet Your Barista, News // on December 1st, 2016 // by // No comment

Reading and coffee are better together! That’s why we’re getting lit – literature from the library, that is.

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We’re kicking off Get Lit Louisville with the Louisville Free Public Library by including a reading list of our Baristas’ favorite books that you can check out from the library and enjoy all winter:

Jay: A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole

Leslie: The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Madison: The Once and Future King by T.H. White

Mal: House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

Ella Jean: The Rainbow Stories by William T Vollmann

Katt: Neverwhere by Neil Gaiam, Who Fears Death by Nnedi Okorafor, The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin, Lilith’s Brood by Octavia Butler, and Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austin

Rachel: The Poisonwood Bible- Barbara Kingsolver, It- Stephen King, The Sirens of Titan- Kurt Vonnegut, The Sound and the Fury- William Faulkner, Being Dead- Jim Crace

Hillary: Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams, The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood, Anansi Boys – Neil Gaiman

Amy: The Hobbit JR Tolkien

Kalina: Interview With A Vampire – Anne Rice
A Song of Ice and Fire series – George R.R. Martin
Dracula – Bram Stoker
Speaker For The Dead – Orson Scott Card

Cortnee: Lolita – Vladimir Nabakov

Kalee: The Consolation of Philosophy – Boethius
The Weight of Glory – CS Lewis

Kimmi: Teachings of Don Juan

Greyson: Catch-22 by Joseph Heller and Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut

Aaron: The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane-Kate DiCamillo
The Bell Jar- Sylvia Plath
I Am Messenger- Marcus Zusak
1984-George Orwell
Slaughterhouse 5- Kurt Vonnegut
The Missing Piece- Shel Silverstein
The Girl on the Train- Paula Hawkins

Tess: And The Mountains Echoed by Khaled Housseini

Sean: Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Powell

Ashley: hitchhiker’s guide to the galaxy by Douglas Adams and Slaughterhouse five by Kurt Vonnegut

Lauren: I love Tom Robbins. “Still life with wood pecker” is my favorite

Kristina: American Gods by Neil Gaiman
Everything is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri

Audrey: The Once and Future King by TH White, Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Ian: It’s a good year to reread 1984 or anything by Kafka

Tiffany: Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling, Eating the Cheshire Cat, Helen Ellis, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Betty Smith, The Cuba Diaries, Isadora Tattlin

Alec: The Martian Chronicles – Bradbury, A Sand County Almanac – Leopold, Dune – Herbert, The Satanic Verses – Rushdie

Annie: Einsteins Dreams. American Gods. Atonement. Pride and Prejudice.

Georgia: Watership Down

Sierra: It’s Kind Of A Funny Story by Ned Vizzini and The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

Marina: Life of Pi by Yann Martel

Kimmi: The curious incident of the dog in the night-time

Katy: Night by Elie Wiesel; The Screwtape Letters by CS Lewis; Waging Heavy Peace by Neil Young.

Justin: The Waves by Virginia Woolf
Lord of the Flies by William Goulding
Lituma en los andes by Mario Vargas Llosa
Foe by J.M. Coetzee
Beloved by Toni Morrison

America: The Black Jewels Trilogy – Anne Bishop
Captive Prince – C.S Pacat
Harry Potter – Mom
Dream Boy – Jim Grimsley
The Very Hungry Caterpillar – Eric Carle
Lilly’s Purple Plastic Purse – Kevin Henkes
Haroun and the Sea of Stories- Salman Rushdie
Lost Souls – Poppy Z Brite

Sami: Nobody Belongs Here More Than You by Miranda July

Mickey: One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Bloodchild – Octavia Butler
Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
Dubliners – James Joyce
The Color Master – Aimee Bender
Cathedral – Raymond Carver
Pastoralia – George Saunders
The New Jim Crow – Michelle Alexander
Between the World and Me – Ta-Nehisi Coates
Just Kids – Patti Smith
M Train – Patti Smith
Love Goes to Buildings on Fire – Will Hermes
Um and anything/everything Harry Potter related

Ashley: I recently read “The Secret of the Wind” by Carlos Ruiz Zafon and LOVED it; definitely going to be a favorite from here on out. “Jane Eyre” will always hold a top spot for me on a
Favorite Books list, as well as both “The Kite Runner” and “A Thousand Splendid Suns” by Khaled Housseini. Henry James’ “The Turn of the Screw” also makes the cut for being a pretty fantastic Victorian mind-bender of a ghost story.

André: Berlin Noir by Philip Kerr

Tyler: Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews

Joe: Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Ragtime by E.L. Doctorow and Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism

Katie: Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
Perfect Match by Jodi Picoult
Bag of Bones by Stephen King
Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

Paige: The Awakening by Kate Chopin

Evan: Tender Is the Night – F. Scott Fitzgerald
Brave New World – Aldous Huxley

Cheryl: Crime & Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Bluets – Maggie Nelson, A Perfect Day for Bananafish – J.D. Salinger

 

 

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Meet Your Barista Lunchtime Poll: Giving thanks… for the FOOD!

In Blog, Meet Your Barista // on November 26th, 2016 // by // No comment

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The truth is clear: Heine Brothers’ baristas LOVE Thanksgiving food!

So which dishes did we love this year? Check it out:

 

Mal: “My Grandma makes a mean thanksgiving meatball + sauce, I’ll tell ya.”

Lindsay: “All of it. Turkey and dumplins is special as its a family recipe and tradition but I do love all of it. Sweet potato casserole, green bean casserole, turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie… all the things!  Is it weird that I really like eating the crisp skin off the turkey as soon as its out of the oven? I know, I’m a monster.”

Erica: “Omg everything. Literally can not pick.”

Madison: “The potatoes. All of ’em. Every kind. Mashed potatoes, fingerling potatoes, sweet potatoes. The stuff of dreams.”

Alison: “Hawaiian rolls. But even better. One step up….Stuffing MADE WITH HAWAIIAN ROLLS.”

Perri: “Green bean casserole”

Leslie: “SWEET POTATOES!”

Olivia: “The turkey!”

Georgia: “Green bean casserole! And wine…lots of wine”

Ian: “All. The. Casseroles.”

Lyndsie: “I wish I didn’t read the other comments, I am SO hungry now 😭
But definitely broccoli casserole and derby pie.”

John: “Stuffing.”

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Meet Your Barista: Bonnita @ Main St.

In Blog, Meet Your Barista, News // on October 24th, 2016 // by // 2 Comments

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Bonnita has been inspiring people at our downtown stores for a while – maybe she’s even inspired you!

In 2013, she made a drastic lifestyle change and a commitment to exercise for just 4% of her day (or one hour). Soon, that blossomed into a love for running and a life philosophy: “Be the 4%.”

The idea that you can commit 4% of your day, just a small portion, to any goal and attain it through consistency has been a driving force in her life since then.

Our Operations Manager, Toni explains,  “You cannot meet Bon and not love her.  She is an amazing person and a great barista, and so much fun to work with and laugh with.  But more than anything, her commitment to fitness and changing her own life has been inspiring to watch. Bon is the perfect example of someone who woke up one day and decided to take control of her own life and for that, she is so much happier and healthier.  She encourages and helps folks everyday by sharing her story, more than she even knows.”

Read more about Bonnita, or ask her next time you’re in the store!

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Which location do you work at?

I work two locations, Main St. and 4th Street Live.

 

How long have you been working at HB?

About 18 months.

 

Louisville native or transplant?

I am a transplant from Jeffersonville, IN.

 

Your most fearless moment/time you pushed yourself the farthest (so far)?

In 2013 I started exercising each day and have lost over 200 lbs to date.

 

Who is your greatest inspiration and why?

I have several people who inspire me but most of all I get inspired by anyone that is overcoming things they never thought possible.

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What’s your main life philosophy or rule to live by?

Believing that all things are possible.

 

If you could give your teenage self one piece of advice, what would it be?

Save Money!!!

 

What’s your greatest fear?

Heights

 

Do you listen to music when you work out/run – what’s the top of your playlist right now?

Music is a must have when I run. At the top of my playlist I have 2 Chains, Michael Jackson, Rihanna, Nick Jonas, Sam Smith, Gucci Mane and lots more

 

Do you have any pets? Tell us about them!

Yes!! I have one Aussiedoodle and her name is Lola. She loves playing frisbee, catching balls, going on long runs and visits to the dog park. Her favorite treat is popcorn and she loves to swim.

 

And lastly, what’s your favorite HB drink & why?

Con Panna because I really enjoy just espresso with a hint of whipped cream.

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Meet Your Barista Lunchtime Poll: Spirit Animals

In Blog, Meet Your Barista // on October 5th, 2016 // by // No comment

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In this Lunchtime Poll, we asked our baristas: What’s your spirit animal and why?

“A momma bear. I’m very protective.”  -Erica

A raccoon – because I am both trashy and adorable. That – or David Bowie.” -Erin

“Labrador, because I love the outdoors and I can be extremely lazy.” -Josh

“A fox. I’m sneaky and like to hide.” -Perri Leigh

“GIRAFFE” -Em

“This guy (Hank, my cat) is my spirit animal” -Andre

 

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Meet Your Barista: Josh @ Blankenbaker

In Blog, Meet Your Barista, Uncategorized // on September 13th, 2016 // by // No comment

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Meet Josh this month!

Between graduate school at UofL, working as Educational Outreach Coordinator at Louisville Youth Group, acting as on Just Creation’s Board of Directors,  and volunteering with True Colors Outreach Ministry at Highland Baptist Church, Josh has a full schedule. But he still manages to find time to kill it as a barista at our Blankenbaker store.

His manager, Kate, nominated Josh because he “is totally sweet and down to earth! He was actually one of my favorite customers long before he ever applied to work here.”

 

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Which location is your home store?

Blankenbaker Parkway, home of the BEST manager, Kate Vanderlip, and assistant manager, Erin Day!

 

How long have you been working at HB?

About 5 months

 

Louisville Native or Transplant?

Louisville Native!

 

You’re a grad student at the UofL Kent School of Social Work – which class are you most looking forward to this semester?

I am most looking forward to my Practicum because it gives me the opportunity to apply the skills I need to master before graduation, and I can learn where I need to grow.

 

Finish the sentence: I couldn’t live without ______.

I couldn’t live without my “me” time. It keeps me (somewhat) sane! I have been practicing mindfulness meditation for about a year now. While not the best at establishing a formal practice and certainly not the spokesperson for the practice, I like mindfulness because you can participate no matter where you are – driving to places, walking in the park, reading a book. Formally sitting is helpful, too, because you have to focus all of you attention on the sitting. The idea is that you bring yourself back into the moment. It’s easy to get depressed about the past or anxious about the future, but life occurs in the here & now. Practicing mindfulness and putting myself back in the moment enables me to prioritize & take life one day at a time. The Passionist Earth & Spirit Center hosts monthly group sittings on the third Sunday of each month from 7-8:30.

 

Tell us a little bit about your work with Louisville Youth Group – how did you get involved?

Louisville Youth Group (LYG) is a 501 (c)3 non-profit organization dedicated to creating a safe place for LGBTQIA+ & Allied youth to socialize, learn, and grow. I am currently a “Mentern,” which is a super cool name for a “Mentor/Intern.” As a graduate student, my Practicum placement is with LYG. I am an outreach coordinator, and my primary function is to reach out to local public and private middle and high schools to share about what LYG does and to aid in the implementation or progression of a Gay-Straight-Transgender Alliance (GSTA) in these schools. I am also working with individuals in Appalachia to develop a group for youth in that region.

 

What’s the best thing about volunteering your time there or some of the other organizations you work with?

The best thing about working with LYG is that I can be who I needed when I was younger for these youth, and I can aid in providing a safe space in which they can be authentic. I struggled with my identity during high school and college, and honestly, for much of my younger twenties. I am at a point in life now where I have accepted and am comfortable with my identity, I have made resolutions, and I can use my experience to try to improve the experiences of these youth.

In addition to volunteering time with LYG, I am also Vice-Chair of the Board of Directors at Just Creations. Just Creations provides marketing assistance to low income craftspeople in the developing world. The sale of these products helps to provide a fair wage for the artisans and enables them to pay for food, education, healthcare, and housing. I also serve on the Outreach and Board Development Committees, and I volunteer on Trolley Hop Fridays. The best thing about volunteering here is the relationships I have formed with Board and Staff members, and I can play a small part in making the world (and my local community) a better place. I also chose to work at Heine Brothers because of their commitment to Fair Trade!

I am also a member of True Colors Ministry at Highland Baptist Church. Highland Baptist is a thinking, feeling, healing community of faith. True Colors’ purpose is to provide welcome, support, and spiritual education for the LGBTQ community. I grew up in a religious background which made the acceptance of my identity a struggle, and Highland showed me that God accepts me for who I am, and everyone for who they are. No exceptions! Highland saw the good in me when I couldn’t see it in myself.

 

Josh_4

 

Favorite place to go in Louisville (or Southern Indiana)?

I love going to the Parklands of Floyd’s Fork! It’s huge, and I can get lost in it and be ok with it! Pretty much anywhere that allows me to be in nature is my favorite place.

 

What’s your main life philosophy or rule to live by?
Oh man, what a question! Love yourself so you can love others. Forgive yourself so you can forgive others. Know your worth. No one decides your fate but you. Your past is your past, and you can’t change that. Focus on today. Who can you be today to insure that you will not be who you were yesterday? Who can you be today that will get you where you want to be tomorrow?

 

What’s your favorite HB drink?
My favorite drink at HB. I like all of the things! Honestly, when I open in the mornings, I start with a 4-shot Americano. It is probably my favorite drink, especially at 5:30 in the morning!

 

Interested in finding out more about some of the organizations Josh works with? Check out these resources and events:

Join them for Glitter Gala: Not Your Fifth Grader’s Fall Festival
        Where? Play Louisville
        When? October 8
Time? 7-10
        Cover? $20, benefitting LYG (7-9)
This is not a fifth grader’s fall festival! There will be booths, prizes, games, art plinko, corn hole, and live performances by Squeez-bot and Bridge 19. Of course, Play’s bartenders will be mixing drinks all night! You can also stay at Play for the drag show at 10:30!
 

Just Creations

Join them for Customer Appreciation Party & Fair Trade Chocolate Bake Off

        Where? Just Creations, 2722 Frankfort Avenue
        When? October 26
        Time? 6-8
To enter the bake off, find your favorite chocolate recipe and register by October 21. Purchase your Fair Trade chocolate ingredients at Just Creations. Then join us for an evening of decadent chocolate delights!Register by calling Just Creations at 897-7319 or emailing us at info@justcreations.org.
Josh exterior
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