How The Co-Op at 1st Can Help You Keep Your New Year’s Resolutions

You’ve probably heard that if you keep a routine for three weeks, it becomes a habit. Every year, millions of people make “resolutions” to do or accomplish in the new year, so in the first three weeks of January, it’s not uncommon to see fresh produce flying off shelves, gyms packed with newcomers, and donations or volunteering requests from new faces.

It’s no secret, though, that many people see these new routines die off quickly as they settle back into their “usual.” So we want to help you fix that!

One of the best things about our space is that we have something for everyone. We pride ourselves on being a multi-faceted organization aimed at addressing accessibility, which means that we can help a lot of people achieve their goals, whatever they may be.

new years resolutions

We did some research and found some of the most popular New Year’s Resolutions – we are here to help you follow through on them and turn your resolutions into routines!

1) Eat Healthier / Lose Weight
One of the most common resolutions is eating healthier or eating more fruits and vegetables. This can be easier said than done, especially when trying to stick to a budget, as fresh fruits and vegetables tend to cost more than foods with preservatives. Well, luckily, we accept SNAP benefits, formally known as food stamps, so that you don’t have to compromise on the quality of your food. We partner with local farmers and producers to ensure that our produce, meat, and dairy products are of the highest quality.

We also accept SNAP and EBT benefits for our My Food Box subscription, in case you are less interested in doing the grocery shopping and more interested in having the food conveniently provided for you. As a bonus, we offer delicious weekly recipes with all of our pre-made meals if you are looking for new inspiration in the kitchen.

fresh produce box

2) Support More Local Businesses
Supporting small businesses is practically what we do! We partner with small businesses across the state to bring their products to you. As a result, our market is stocked with products like locally made honey and jewelry. We pride ourselves on redefining what it means to be a local market – we want to be your one-stop-shop!

We have also designed our space to accommodate businesses needing physical space to operate instead of a shelf for displaying products. That’s why we thought it was essential to create several different areas. Our commercial kitchen is perfect for companies who need to make their product in a commercial-grade kitchen with specific safety and health licenses. We have a fitness space for pay-what-you-can yoga classes and other tenants like a massage therapist.

Our membership program reflects our offerings and encourages people to continue to support all of the local businesses that use our space!

locally made jewelry

3) Self-Care
We hear many people notice that they need to prioritize themselves and their self-care more. Obviously, self-care comes in many different forms, but we hear some distinctly popular ones most often.

Massages are an obvious and easy way to decompress completely. We really can’t think of anything more relaxing, especially if your body needs healing. Vital Roots is our resident massage therapist – they specialize in helping you recenter and achieve ultimate relaxation in your mind and body.

Our market vendors have something for you if you are interested in self-care at home, like a skincare routine or nightly relaxation and meditation. Clay Love offers clay-based skincare to keep your skin smooth and nourished. Colorado Medicine Woman keeps us stocked on CBD products and tinctures to give you that ultimate wind-down. Pair it with a cup of Orenda and Sage herbal tea and you will feel your worries melt away.

massage denver

4) Learn a New Hobby/Skill
We love this resolution because the possibilities are endless! You could become a Kung Fu master if you want to. But, we’ve found that most people have slightly less ambitious (but equally admirable) goals.

Gardening has grown in popularity recently, and we are in full support! Nothing is more satisfying than harvesting fresh fruits and vegetables from your garden. During the gardening season, we offer weekly gardening classes for anyone interested! So keep an eye on our calendar for that schedule.

If you are more interested in a physical hobby, we have weekly yoga or Zumba classes in our fitness space that are sure to get you hooked – they are a wonderful mix of energy and intention and are a great addition to your week.

Another popular resolution that we love is learning how to cook. Once you start exploring the kitchen, it’s hard to go back. We pride ourselves on keeping our market stocked with fresh ingredients and spices to take your cooking to the next level and discover your “dish.”

premade meal denver

No matter your goals or resolutions, we want to help you reach them! We try to offer something for everyone so that hopefully, we can be a part of your new routines, too.

Share this on social media if you found it helpful, or tag it in posts as you work on your resolutions! We love to hear from you.

filled community fridge

Where You Can Find a Community Fridge in Denver

A pivotal part of our mission as a Co-Op is to help our community address food insecurity and accessibility. We fundamentally believe that everyone should have access to nutritious food without worrying about how to afford it.

 

That’s why we love the Denver Community Fridge Project. We are aligned with their goals and are eager to help however we can – we have filled a few fridges with some healthy donations, and we thought it’d be helpful for us to spread the word, too.

 

What is a community fridge?

A community fridge is a refrigerator located in a neighborhood filled by community partners, organizations and individuals. They are intended to help fight food insecurity and have become a great way to get food to families in need discretely.

 

Who manages it?

Community fridges are often considered a mutual aid project, which means that multiple people and organizations contribute to them. Essentially, it means that people are working together as opposed to institutions. We like this approach because we think it’s always better when we work together!

 

How does it get filled?

There are a few ways these fridges get filled! Organizations like ours will donate pre-made meals and fresh produce deliver it ourselves. Some individuals will donate fresh produce or store-bought meals or food items. It’s important to note that all pre-made meals must come from a commercial kitchen which means that homemade meals are not accepted.

filled community fridge

 

Does it get cleaned?

As a mutual aid project, some of the maintenance comes from the people who contribute. There are guidelines on the Denver Community Fridge page about etiquette for the fridges. If you are donating to one and see food that needs to be removed or something that needs to be cleaned, it’s requested you spend extra time to help the community and get that taken care of.

 

Can I just take food from it?

Yes! This essentially operates on an “honor system” meaning there is a general expectation that only people suffering from food insecurity take food from the fridge, but it’s a no-questions-asked situation. We want everyone to feel comfortable getting the food they need!

 

How can I get involved?

There are a few ways to get involved. If you live in Denver or the surrounding areas and would like to donate produce or meals, check out the community fridge locations for the one closest to you so you may drop off your donation! If you don’t have the time or resources to contribute to a fridge directly, consider donating or volunteering with an organization that actively contributes to them.

 

What can I donate?

Fresh produce is always welcome along with dairy items, non-perishable pantry items and prepared meals. As we mentioned, prepared meals can only come from kitchens that meet certain safety standards, i.e., commercial kitchens so please refrain from donating homemade meals as they will be thrown away. Also, raw meat and expired or rotting food is not allowed. The goal is to give people fresh and edible food. Additionally, if you have small items such as a can opener or a pair of gloves, feel free to donate these. But please understand community fridges are not donation centers such as Goodwill or ARC.

denver community fridge

We love the emergence of community fridges and believe they serve an important purpose in addressing food insecurity. If you are interested in getting involved or are a community member who is in need of resources, make sure you get in touch with the team at the Denver Community Fridge Project or contact us and we can help you further. 

 

Top 5 Reasons to Get a Food Subscription Box

Have you noticed recently how businesses are evolving to get their customers everything they need in the most efficient, effective and convenient way possible? Well, The Co-Op at 1st is no exception to that trend. We have recently introduced our new My Food Box subscription, which is a hybrid subscription box containing pre-made meals, fresh produce along with eggs, dairy and more. 

 

Colorado is one of the most beautiful states in the country – there is so much you can do here! From hiking and biking to gardening at a local community garden, to seeing Denver and learning about its rich history. With so much to do, and what often feels like so little time, the last thing most people want to do is go to the grocery store. 

family hiking

The convenience of a food subscription box like the My Food Box is unmatched, which is why you should consider signing up! There are week-to-week and monthly options for you, depending on what makes sense for your lifestyle. 

 

In an effort to get you out of the grocery store and into the greatness that is Colorado, we put together the top 5 benefits and reasons that you should sign up for our food box. 

 

1) Convenience

  • We did the math, and if you live a mile from a grocery store and are shopping for just two people, you can account for about two hours of time including transportation, shopping and putting the groceries away. Having your groceries and a pre-made meal delivered to you, or ready for pick-up, can save you at least two hours a week, assuming you’re not shopping for more people. A food box subscription is the ultimate convenience and it helps you to maximize your time. Convenience isn’t just your time though! We have all run into “writer’s block” when thinking about what we want to cook, and it’s helpful to have the brain work taken out of grocery shopping and meal preparation. 

 

2) High-Quality Products 

  • Have you ever been to the grocery store looking for a fresh ear of corn or a big, juicy peach only to find that your options are the furthest things from “the cream of the crop”? When you order your food through a subscription service like ours, you’ll get only the freshest produce from local farmers and partners. We try to get you the best produce and dairy products available in Colorado so you can feel good about the ingredients you are putting in your meals. Our pre-made meals are also locally made from chefs at Food Bridge who pride themselves on bringing exciting flavors and ingredients to all their dishes.

3) More time to do what you love 

  • When you live in Colorado, it’s really easy to fill your time. You can go explore in the mountains, you can go play in the city, you can hang out in your neighborhood and start a garden – the world is your Rocky Mountain Oyster (we had to!). If you add the time that it takes to grocery shop weekly, and add a night of cooking and preparing meals, you’re looking at at least 5 hours of time that you could be spending doing what you love. Unless, of course, doing what you love is cooking, in which case you should come shop for fresh ingredients at our indoor, year-round Farmers Market!

 

4) Expands your palette 

  • You’ve heard the age-old saying, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” Well, we aren’t saying that your family meatloaf recipe is broken – we are just saying that you might not want to eat it ALL the time. A food subscription box ensures an exciting variety of produce and food options like locally-grown mushrooms, delicious jams or humanely-raised meat products. It will be like an exciting surprise every time it arrives or you pick it up! If you come up with any fun recipes while using our My Food Box, be sure to share those recipes with us so we can feature your creativity! 

 

5) Supports Local Business

  • While sometimes the Big Box grocery stores have a little more variety, smaller markets and produce subscription boxes directly support the local economy and associated businesses by shopping small. We work with all different types of businesses from local artisans who make the jelly we include to dairy and produce farmers right here in Colorado. By subscribing to a locally-based food subscription box like ours, you are supporting your local farmers and business owners while getting all the benefits and delicious food that you can find at most big box grocery stores. 

food subscription box

As you can see, there are plenty of great reasons to add a food subscription box to your weekly routine. Plus, who doesn’t love getting packages when they come home from work or step outside to let the dog out? 

 

An additional benefit of our subscription in particular is that we accept SNAP Benefits and Double Bucks as payment methods along with credit/debit card, check and cash. Our ultimate mission is to make good, healthy food accessible to everybody. That’s also why we offer delivery and pick-up; we don’t want transportation to get in the way of you being able to eat healthy and live the life you deserve to live.

 

The Co-Op at 1st is driven by the mission statement that Good Food = Good Health and we take the responsibility of making healthy food accessible very seriously. Our My Food Box subscription is a great way to take advantage of our programs without having to leave the comfort of your home. 

 

If you are a My Food Box subscriber and you have any fun recipes to share, please reach out to us at [email protected] for the opportunity to be featured on our blog and social media!