Maybe it’s the news, or the natural disasters, but it’s been harder to get to sleep lately. So we’re asking some of the busiest people we know how they get ready for a good night’s rest.
Sabrina Diaz loves watermelons. ?Her apartment is full of them. A watermelon dish. ?A painting, a pencil drawing. Sometimes her nails are watermelon. ?Her dog Nas, named after the rapper, was once a watermelon slice for halloween. ?Fruit paraphernalia extends to the decor of her juice bar, Grass Roots Juicery, which also has real fruit (and vegetables) cold-pressed to perfection.
Diaz’s eye for produce comes from her family, Dominican-Americans who own a set of ?supermarket franchises in New York and throughout New Jersey. “I kinda knew produce,” Diaz says. ?“Since my parents worked all the time I was often going to work with them. I started as a bagger at the register, then cashier, then office things. I learned about produce, from ordering produce to ?display, to pricing.” Her first entrepreneurial pursuit, which she says is still her “true love thing” was buying and selling vintage and second hand clothes and furniture. ?It was during her lunch breaks working at the supermarket in East Williamsburg that she realized the area was lacking something. At home she always loved cooking Dominican food: mangu, mofongo, tostones, pastelitos and rice and beans, but at lunch she wanted something healthy.
Five years ago, a retail space was vacant near the supermarket. ?Diaz and her family got together to bring her health food business idea to fruition. With the store she got to apply her interior design aesthetic to her love of clean eating. The space is fitted with custom shelves in a rounded enclave, and outlined with bright blue paint. “It came together really slowly,” Diaz says, “[But] I noticed people appreciated parts of my personality showing in the store which gave me the confidence to embrace it.”
A year ago, CBD products were added to the Grass Roots menu. ?Diaz began to believe in the oil’s effect after seeing it used to treat cancer patients. ?Her boyfriend’s mom had been struggling with cancer and always rejected Diaz’s wheatgrass shots, but CBD oil was something that her helped with pain, mental clarity, and appetite. “If she believed in it, I knew I should.”
At Grass Roots, CBD oil can be added to just about anything, the same way one might add a protein shot. Though it’s routine in L.A., Diaz is an early adopter in New York State, both professionally and personally. Before she sleeps, Diaz prepares a hot drink of lemon, fresh ginger, around 10mg of CBD, and 1 scoop of magnesium powder. ?Then she scrolls on Etsy and reads a lot of David Sedaris.
What’s on your bedside table?
A stack of books. ?Books are always in rotation: Sick in The Head by Judd Apatow, Calypso by David Sedaris, How To Change Your Mind by Michael Pollan, and The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene. ?My crystals. Essential oils. And, um… jewelry. And my jade roller!
Do you look at your phone at night?
Yes. So much. I’m on my phone until I start dozing off.
What’s the last thing you check on your phone before bed?
Etsy. ?Vintage. ?I’m always looking at vintage. ?The last thing I bought was a Victor Costa gown for a wedding, yesterday.
Patterned sheets or plain?
Plain. I’m really serious about my bed, and about sleeping. There is nothing I love more, and I will invest in nice sheets for sure. ?I think my mom instilled it in me; she would always tell me that your bed is something you should invest in and take seriously (I knew about thread counts since age 3) . It’s where you spend most of your time and sleep is important! Sferra is my favorite, they make great quality linens.
What’s the best kind of blanket, in your opinion?
I just switched to a quilt which is interesting for me.
How many pillows?
A lot of pillows, nine or 10 pillows. ?I sleep with one under my head and one on my side and one on top of the one I'm sleeping on. ?My routine when I get in bed is like, “this pillow goes here, this pillow goes here,” all in place.
PJs or au naturel?
Naked or in a little nightgown.
Is there a sound that helps you fall asleep?
The sounds of the city.
What sound do you wake up to?
Ugh, my alarm clock. ?I hate it so much.
Do you set a bedtime?
1 a.m. is my cut-off.
Do you remember your dreams?
A month ago I started sleeping with rose quartz, malachite, and salenite under my pillow and I've been having the most vivid, realistic dreams. ?My last dream was about my friend Jessica, we had this massive insane party…it was very real, I was 100 percent sure it had happened.
Sunlight or blackout blinds?
Sunlight; we don't even have blinds.
Do you believe in electric blankets?
When I was little, as soon as the laundry used to come out from the dryer, I’d take a nap on top of the pile of warm laundry. ?A heated blanket sounds amazing. I’ve been looking into gravity blankets recently, they sound great.
Do you get news alerts?
I do. I was just thinking the other day though that I need to turn them off. ?At this point with our president, it’s too much of a mess and nothing surprises me.
Where do you call “home”?
I’ve been living in New York since I graduated high school in 2007, but home to me is still New Jersey, Bergen County. ?I grew up there and I’m still very much a Jersey Girl.
Is there a scent you associate with rest, or with home?
Yeah, there is. I don’t know what they are but when I smell [home]...I know.