A week on the Cape

The best of Cape Cod

Growing up, every summer my family made an annual trip up to Cape Cod from New York. The peninsula off the coast of Massachusetts is known for its laid-back New England vibe, its small streets and shops, lighthouses, sprawling beaches, and of course, killer seafood. New Englanders are a friendly species, and whether dunking a tender lobster claw into drawn butter or relaxing on Nauset beach, it's always a nice way to spend a week in the summer. Here are some of my favorite parts about this place.

Fun: Pirate's Cove

Boston Globe

If you're bringing the kids, or even if you're not, Pirate's Cove is a must. It's a pirate-themed mini-golf course located in South Yarmouth. While I don't believe there were any known pirates in Cape Cod, the theme makes you feel like you're a swashbuckler yourself. While every time I visited, I ended up with a ball in the water, it was still a fun time. Whether you want to take Captain's Course or Blackbeard's Course, it's $10.50 for adults and $9.50 for children ages 4 to 12. Under 3 plays free!

Chill: Nauset Beach

John Greim

When you park the car and traverse the gorgeous sand dunes, you'll have one of the most beautiful views in Cape Cod. Nauset Beach is an institution to New England vacationers. It stretches 10 miles from Orleans to Chatham, and offers some of the loveliest sunsets, fishing and surfing. Though if you're not willing to brave the sometimes chilly waters, bring a good book and take in the smell of the sea. You are also welcome to bring food and enjoy it on the beach or in the picnic area.

Grub: Cobie's Clam Shack

Getty

As soon as you get into New England territory, you'll likely start salivating for some seafood. Cobie's is the place to go. In Brewster sits a little shack with outdoor seating on the side of the road that doesn't look like much, but the food will surprise you. Delight in some gems from the sea like lobster rolls, fish and chips, and a quality chow-dah. But they also offer other classic options like burgers and dogs. But the best part about Cobie's is the final touch: the dessert. Their ice cream is creamy and delicious, the perfect cool-down to a warm, summer day.

Lounge: Ocean Edge Resort

Nicole Chan Photography

When it comes to finding the best lodging in the Cape, it's wise to consider beach proximity. I've stayed year after year at Ocean Edge's villages, which are beautiful and homey rooms with access to a golf course, heated pools, tennis courts, kayaking, paddleboarding, and bike rentals. You can get a Brewster Beach Pass, which will give you access to 6 Brewster beaches and 2 freshwater ponds.

Sail: Martha's Vineyard

Boston Globe

If you're feeling adventurous, you should definitely take the ferry to Martha's Vineyard. It's a quick ride with a great view of the water. When you get there, enjoy this island's just as delicious seafood at Chesca's, homemade fudge at Mudrick's, ice cream at Mad Martha's, and a variety of fun and beautiful novelty shops.

Cape Cod is a perfect summer destination for vacation-goers of all ages. And if you think you've tasted great seafood outside of New England, think again! Also, be sure to bring back a lighthouse-themed trinket!

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10 Endangered Animals to Weep Over

Celebrate Endangered Species Day.

An endangered species is not a tragedy, because if a species is endangered, then they aren't yet extinct.

Sadly, there are millions of endangered species across the world, all facing threats that mostly stem from human activities. Still, it's not too late. Take a gander at these majestic animals, and then donate to a wildlife fund or environmental activism group of your choice.


Of course, nature doesn't need saving—humans do—and climate change and environmental destruction are threats to humans as well as animals, but if you need a reminder of the beauty and fragility of the natural world, check out these extraordinary species.



SPONSORED

Do Non-Melatonin Sleep Aids Really Work?

Objective makes a chocolate square.

I Can't Sleep.

I truly cannot remember the last time I had a good night's rest. Even before the stay-at-home orders, I was just a little ball of nerves.

But lately, it's been awful. I toss and turn, it's always too hot or even too cold, sometimes I make myself tea and read for a bit, but when I'm still up at 1 a.m., I reach for my phone and then I'm up until 3. My sister and I have a weekly call, and our small talk about our exhaustion turned into an hour long conversation about sleep.

I Thought I'd Tried Everything. Even Melatonin.

My sister asked why I hadn't gone for the old staple, melatonin and I reminded her about the time we traveled abroad, and it gave me the weirdest nightmares (the horrible kind where you wake up in your dream and you're still in a dream). Chamomile tea didn't work, nothing worked.

She said she had a friend who swore by something I definitely hadn't heard of.

They Were NOT Pills, Teas or Anything I'd Seen Before.

A company called Objective makes Fast Asleep, a sleep solution delivered as chocolatey treats. They're created with saffron and GABA. If going to sleep was as easy as eating a piece of these chocolatey, minty delights every night, I'd be sold.

What Exactly Was In It?

Cocoa contains caffeine, so I didn't know how this would help me sleep. After talking with my sister, I went online and saw that the calming, sleep-supporting ingredients cancel out any of the very little caffeine content.

Saffron, the spice, is apparently known to help with staying asleep, and their GABA is a fermented version of the neurotransmitter that's known to help you relax and fall asleep faster. In a study, 100% of customers saw improvement in their sleep quality thanks to saffron. One hundred percent!

Do I Try It?

A bag of 30 pieces was only $40, and they had a money-back guarantee.

They're keto-friendly and only 30 calories a piece, so not too decadent before bedtime.

They were chocolatey-minty, which is my favorite flavor, so I was sold. I ordered a bag to try.

The First Night, I Wasn't Impressed.

I took one piece (super yummy!) - 30-60 minutes before bedtime is recommended - but when I climbed in, I didn't notice a difference. I was worried I'd wasted my money.

However, once I fell asleep, I stayed asleep until my alarm went off, which hasn't always been the case for me.

I checked the site again, and noticed that many people didn't notice a real difference until the third or fourth night - it builds up in your system over time, so I decided to keep an open mind the rest of the week.

The Second Night Was Completely Different

Without doing anything differently from the first night, my second night was amazing. I felt calm and sleepy as I was getting ready for bed, and once I hit the pillow, I was out the whole night.

It had to be these sweet treats. The next day, I even felt more balanced and relaxed - Fast Asleep helps boost serotonin levels and reduce cortisol (the stress hormone), and I definitely noticed a difference in my overall mood and alertness.

I Already Ordered More.

Just In Case! There's nothing habit-forming about this product, so it's completely safe to take every night, and I honestly always want to keep it in the house. I'd also love to offer it to anyone staying over in the guest room, whenever we have guests again.

Now that I'm getting a healthy 8 hours of sleep every night, I feel more equipped during the day to tackle the things I need to do and deal with some of my daytime stressors. I finally had the energy to clean the kitchen, which had been bothering me so much for the past few weeks.

With Objective's Fast Asleep, I get real sleep and balance my levels, so I don't have to feel tired during my waking hours. Sleep in the form of chocolate squares sounds so weird, but oh my goodness, do they work.

Our partners at Objective Wellness are currently offering a 25% discount if you use the coupon code STAYHOME. Check them out here!

Food & Drink

The Best Apps for Craft Beer Delivery

Try beers from all over the world–from your phone.

With breweries and distilleries out of business for the foreseeable future, your favorite beer may feel particularly out of reach this time of year, especially with the weather changing. But don't let quarantine suck all the fun out of summer. Luckily, thanks to technology, a lot of craft beer is now deliverable straight to your door step. Here are a few of the best apps to help make sure you stay up to date on the latest trendy brews.

Tavour

Tavour

Simplistic and elegant, Tavour allows users to easily fill up a box of beer over a period of time before shipping. The app offers more than 650 different breweries both local and national and is perfect for those who like to experiment. It's easy to use, and their menu rotates regularly so you and your beer never grow stale.

TapRM

TapRM

TapRM offers a wide range of both craft beers and hard seltzers. While based almost exclusively in New York City, the app offers fast, same day delivery from some of the best beer brands in the world. They also provide a unique selection of beers to help you find your new favorite. All you need to do is download the app and place your order!

Drizly

Offering a stark variety of craft beer, Drizly allows its users to mix and match 12-packs, sixers or by the bottle. Their guarantee is that they can have whatever you order delivered to your house in less than an hour. You can even schedule your delivery for a specific time, with each delivery taking around 20-40 minutes.

Saucey

Saucey takes delivery very seriously. When you order with them they guarantee that they'll deliver in 30-minutes or less, or they guarantee two day shipping. Also, beer aside, their entire liquor cabinet is also up for grabs. From tequila and whiksey, to vodka and wine, nothing is off the table for Saucey.

Beer Menus

BeerMenus

For those who enjoy strictly local beers, BeerMenus features a tap list from local bars and a broader stock list from your neighborhood beer store. With that, you can make sure to create a list of your favorite beers in your neighborhood, so that when they're in stock you can be ready to go.