At the peak of quarantine my boyfriend, Akuroseokike, started a fund to provide direct support back to his community in Minneapolis. He was fortunate to raise almost $4,000 just from crowdfunding and posting his story on Instagram and Facebook.
Akuro donated money for supplies for protestors, food for volunteers who were helping clean up the streets and distribute supplies to the residents of North Minneapolis, and he's even donated a large sum to a community garden to help feed the neighborhoods affected by the burning of Lake Street.
With the fund still growing, he's started the brand Defend MPLS as a way to raise more awareness for the people devastated in Minneapolis and shed a light on the artist community in the city, which has a large footprint. In doing this, he created these t-shirts.
Proceeds of the DefendMPLS t-shirts goes towards the InnerG Production Fund and the ability to further the DefendMPLS brand and messaging. The website www.defendmpls.com will feature creative writing, music, art and photography, clothing, and other products made by Minneapolis-based artists.
Proceeds from those sales will go to those artists who are striving to make a living off their craft. Stay tuned, you might find something you'll like!
Of course a day out and about calls for a food stop. We made several stops throughout Downtown Brooklyn and while on our way to the train to Manhattan, debating between Mexican or pizza, we smelled Charm Kao Thai from across the street!
When we approached the restaurant, there was one couple seated well over 6 feet away and we had 2 tables well spaced between us. The hostess greeted with hand sanitizer and seated us right away.
The first thing I politely asked her for was a Thai Iced Tea! On an 80 degree day with the sun blazing everywhere you walk, this iced cold, creamy drink is exactly what you need. Thai Iced Tea is actually one of my top 3 favorite type of drinks, it falls behind ginger beer, obviously. Not only is the orange color so attractive, but the sweet taste of tamarind, black tea, and condensed milk together make this drink so dreamy. It's so hard to not chug it the first 5 minutes especially on a hot day!
When we approached the restaurant, the sandwich board on the sidewalk listed a Massaman Curry with Beef Short Ribs as the lunch special.
Since I make curry a lot at home and eat it so many different ways all the time whether it be one of the many thai curries, a jamaican curry, or another West Indian curry. I just love the many flavors it has and can be and it's so easy to throw together especially for veggie meals in my house.
I knew what I was getting the moment I saw it as an option. Usually when I order a Thai curry, it's made with either chicken or shrimp so the beef was a new one for me!
Beef stews are actually my favorite comfort food. When the meat just melts off the bone or shreds so easily with a fork, those are the moments I love most.
The second dish we ordered is a fan favorite and one Akuro just can't avoid ordering, Tofu Pad Thai and very rarely does he order a meat protein.
The Pad Thai was just as good as we expected. The way they prepared their pad thai sauce almost had us asking for extra on the side! And the tofu did not disappoint; lightly pan-seared on all sides and holding all the fishy, peanut-y flavor.
After our meal we headed into Manhattan to finish a few more errands before making our way back home. We ended the day with ice cream from Lady Moo Moo in Bedstuy.
This tiny, ice creamery serves you from a walk-up window. The flavors are pretty simple and you can get all the classics like cookies & cream, pictured. They also have a Rooftop Honey flavor that tastes like creamy gold, if you can imagine.
We're so lucky to live so close to this ice cream stand, but now that I'm home a lot more it would be nice if they were open during the week as well.
With a day this full, it would've been so rude of me not to share. I hope you get the chance to visit Charm Kao Thai! Don't forget to check out Defend MPLS and feel free to support the brand and order a t-shirt while you're there!
193 Schermerhorn St, Brooklyn, NY 11201