New Year, New Non-Profit Partner!

Happy new year, all! We are excited to announce that this month, we are donating our proceeds to A Light of Hope. Check out their cause, and support them by buying at Undergrounds!

Who They Are

A Light of Hope (ALOH) is a support group system for individuals in crisis and their families. They provide support for youth and young adults 14-26 years of age struggling with substance abuse and/or self-destructive actions or behaviors. At ALOH, they believe that where there is light, there is hope. ALOH is a fellowship of parents and young adults, coming together to share experience and support.

What They Provide

Weekly services and alternative peer group activities for youths and their families. ALOH emphasizes a 12-Step approach to family recovery, as well as Alternative Peer Group (APG) community of caring and welcoming experience for young people and their families. APGs play a vital role in successful recovery by introducing young people to healthy environments and opportunities for new relationships. By recognizing the powerful influence of peers, ALOH looks to channel that in positive ways. Family members, including siblings and friends, are encouraged to attend parent support meetings. Other services they provide include:

Counseling – Individual and Family
Specialized Small Groups
IOP Intensive Outpatient Program
Free Weekly Support Groups
Sober Activities
Family Interventions
Inpatient Treatment Referrals
Treatment Transports
Sober Living Referrals

Why We Love Them

A Light of Hope is doing good in our community by working to change lives by emphasizing positive community. Through APGs and family involvement, they help build a team of support around a struggling individual. They are faithful and powerful servants, offering light and hope to those who have grown accustomed to a life without both.

Help Us Do Good with ALOH

Each cup of coffee you purchase in Undergrounds in January helps ALOH accomplish their mission. Put simply, when you buy at Undergrounds, you help change lives. Come by Undergrounds and do good today.

Do you know someone who could benefit from A Light of Hope? Contact them here. They are here for you!

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We love the arts here at Undergrounds – of all shapes, sizes, sounds, sights, and stories. We love listening while local talent shares lyrical and melodic art on stage, and we love viewing what local artists share through a canvas, clay, or camera. In this case, we are particularly excited to welcome local Santa Clarita artist Scott Parker to the Undergrounds living room for an exhibit of his work on Saturday, December 7, at 7:00pm.

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Meet Scott

A practicing artist of over three decades, Scott’s talent was proven through his own drive and dedication. “I had some formal art training in high school and at the local community college,” he explains. “Otherwise, I am self taught.”

Most of Scott’s work consists of color and black and white pencil drawings, but he has also tried his very capable hand at sculpting and has worked with acrylics. The subject of his art has generally been Science Fiction and Fantasy, but he has “recently enjoyed painting portraits and wildlife.” As I was flipping through a collection of Scott’s work, I even saw comic book characters, animals, and portraits of movie characters! A wide range of subjects, Scott’s creative eye and excellent execution is apparent in each piece.

Scott is currently part of the Santa Clarita Artist Association and has participated in several gallery showings with them both as a volunteer and as an exhibiting artist. The revenue created by art sales through these events and gallery sales are raised for charitable events and art scholarships for students continuing their art careers or for other charitable organizations.

In addition to his charitable work with the Santa Clarita Artist Association, Scott has participated in art shows to raise money for cancer awareness programs as well as programs that support wildlife preserves (such as actress Tipi Hedren’s Shambala Wildlife Preserve and Roar Foundation. The money raised from the sales of his paintings was used for the operational costs of the wild life preserve.

Why Arts in Undergrounds?

We’re all about supporting the SCV community through connection over coffee, community, and culture. Our Arts Underground shows are a way we bring our community together to support local artist talent. These gatherings are free, with no cover charge for the public. Our goal is to provide an inviting space where art and the artists themselves are valued and able to show their work.

Come enjoy and support local talent at a chill spot with organic, local roasted coffee. I can’t think of a better way to spend a fall Saturday night. But hey, that’s just me.

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Herbal Tea Benefits

November 15, 2013 / Uncategorized /

Do you love tea?

…. yes?

This one’s for you then! Coffee lovers keep an ear turned this way as well, as herbal teas are a fantastic addition to your routine!

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Tea or Tisane?

While researching loose leaf vs bag teas and the benefits of herbal beverages, we learned that herbal teas are referred to as ‘teas’ but actually classified as ‘tisanes.’ Tisanes include the whole plant- stem, roots, and leaves. In loose leaf form, one can reap the full benefits that tisanes offer because they contain the whole plant. Bag teas may taste yummy(and offer cute sayings on the tag… who could resist) but they only contain crushed leaves and dust. Hashtag letdown. And kind of gross if you think about the dust part too long.

Luckily loose leaf teas are not hard to find! Here at Undergrounds, we are proud to be your one-stop loose leaf shop! That stomach-soothing cup of chamomile is calling your name! Or perhaps you’re searching for a natural way to treat insomnia and anxiety around exam time? Lavender is your go-to! Herbal teas vary slightly in mineral content but the anti-inflammatory properties are the same. A few herbal teas we recommend? Rooibos, chamomile, lavender, and hibiscus. These teas all promote healing, lessen swelling, and promote digestive health.

Rooibos is All the Rage

Rooibos tea(pronounced ‘roy-BUS’) is a powerhouse tea. This caffeine-free choice is low in tannins, which can leave a bitter or astringent-like aftertaste. Polyphenols fight free radicals(unstable cells in your body that attack healthy ones) and protect against Parkinson’s disease, as well as Alzheimer’s. Rooibos also contains high levels of magnesium(essential for the nervous system and aids in calming anxiety), calcium(for strong teeth and bones, holla!), zinc(important for a healthy metabolism), and iron(no anemia over here!). It improves circulation, lowers blood pressure & cholesterol, and the high levels of flavonoids relieve muscle cramps & indigestion. I also read that rooibos is a safe option for soothing colicky babies. For those with skin problems, rooibos baths are suggested as natural alternatives to soothing eczema and psoriasis.

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Calming Chamomile

Chamomile(which is delicious when mixed with rooibos, just sayin’) also has anti-inflammatory properties, promoting healing and lessening swelling. It soothes the nervous system while it’s antimicrobial properties protect your body from the bacteria that infections such as strep throat. This tea soothes and relaxes the muscles and lining of the intestines, which lowers the risk of developing certain stomach cancers. Chamomile also promotes healthy skin- soothing eczema, allergies, and acne! You can find skincare products with chamomile extract, but be wary of how other ingredients may interact. A fun option is to steep some to add to a bath or to rinse the skin with, similar to the rooibos bath idea.

Lovely Lavender

Worriers and insomniacs look over here! Lavender is the ultimate soother, whether you’re drinking it or using it for aromatherapy! While calming your nerves, it may also ease headaches. This tea has high antiseptic qualities, it was used to treat wounds in wartimes. Like rooibos and chamomile, this means it is great for treating irritated skin. This tea is safe to drink during pregnancy- most herbal teas are, with the exception of hibiscus tea.

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Hiibiscus is Hip

Hibiscus is a natural diuretic, preventing bloating and regulating your body’s water levels(and it looks real nice in a mason jar). Like other herbal teas, the polyphenols have anti-inflammatory effects and stimulate the digestive system(which deters the growth of stomach cancers). However, this tea interacts with acetaminophen, rendering it less effective and causing it to leave the body faster. Hibiscus lowers cholesterol and may aid in maintaining good blood pressure. However, it is not recommended to drink during pregnancy, check with your doctor before giving it a try if you’re a mama-to-be!

You may find these in bag form at the grocery store, but we recommend loose leaf teas for full benefits. Because loose leaf teas contain the whole plant rather than leaves and dust, they still contain all the essential oils.

You’ve Picked Your Tea, Now What?

As with everything, there is a right and wrong way to do tea. Use too much tea and you end up with a warm cup of bitterness, use too little and your cup will be wimpy. The golden ratio is 2 grams of tea(or a teaspoon) to every 6 ounces of water. Fresh water is better than water that’s been boiled a few times, but your ratio of water to tea is more important.

So- you’ve picked your tea, you have the correct ratio of leaves and water, now just let it steep for 4 minutes then enjoy :)

We carry all these teas and more, so stop in for a chat and sniff around the tea display!

Photos courtesy of Action Shot Media

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Meet the Staff!

October 04, 2013 / Uncategorized /

Good day, Do Good-ers!

With the start of a new season, we thought it’d be cool to kick off the new season by introducing ourselves!

Meet the Manager

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I’m Janie, and if we haven’t had the pleasure of meeting, pop in sometime! I began in my role as Manager at Undergrounds in April, and still pinch myself that I work at my favorite place in the Santa Clarita Valley. Undergrounds is my second living room, and I hope you find it to be as comfortable and inspiring as I do!

My coffee background is a journey that starts in Northern California – Folsom, to be exact – where I grew up. I served my first cup of joe in a bakery and coffeehouse in my home town, and was destined to be a lover and respecter of coffee after that. I moved to the SCV when I got married in 2010, and you can find my musician husband Wil and I brewing Chemex, Siphon, and cold brew in our coffee-loving home. (You may have seen Wil playing guitar or drums on stage at RLC or at GENERATE.)

I envision Undergrounds being a place where excellent coffee is served excellently, where community is found, promoted, and contagious, and where art and culture is not only appreciated, but cultivated and affected. I am passionate about the great social causes Undergrounds aids right here in our community and around the globe, and I’m excited that I get to join you in making our community a better place, one cup of Undergrounds coffee at a time.

Meet the Supervisor

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[Side note: Janie is a peach. End side note.]

I’m Katie, Supervisor and resident catlady in Undergrounds! In November of 2012 I started in Undergrounds as a volunteer and was later fortunate enough to assume the Supervisor position in March 2013- a day after my birthday! Pretty sweet birthday present, right?

Aside from felines and lattes with extra foam, my interests are rooted in psychology and the arts. In the past I have earned a degree in Psychology and attended art school; both experiences played a part in discovering a passion for photography and cultivating positive environments. Currently, I attend College of the Canyons and am found lurking around the photography and art departments.

What I love about Undergrounds is that it is a positive place for everyone to find refuge from the daily grind. Before I started working behind the counter, it was a safe place to enjoy a cup of joe and some company. Now my coffee knowledge is being expanded daily and you can find me debating whether to purchase a cold brew toddy or a chemex for home! If we haven’t had the chance to meet yet, come on in and say hi! I’ll show you cat pictures, promise.

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Fall is upon us, with all the coziness of sweaters, hot tea, and boots, but accompanied with the very un-cozy stress of a chaotic season. How easy is it to get lost in a world of our own busy-ness now that the carefree days of summer are over? Undergrounds is a haven from a fast-paced SCV everyday, but this October, we’re taking it a step further: yoga.

Free Yoga Classes

On Saturday, October 12, and Saturday, October 26, Stacy will be leading a free yoga class from 9-10am right here at Undergrounds! Stacy is in the training program at YogaWorks, our neighbor right across the way.

Meet Your Instructor

“I’m Stacy and I believe that everyone can benefit from Yoga. I am currently a teacher’s assistant in YogaWorks Teacher Training program, in hopes of becoming a full time Yoga teacher. Thank you for this opportunity to grow!”
We asked Stacy what yoga means to her: “Yoga is my connection to God, it teaches me to stay present and [teaches me] acceptance. Yoga helps me live in gratitude and joy everyday. My desire is to be able to give away the same blessings I’ve received from this practice.”

What should I bring?

Wear comfortable clothes to move in. Bring yoga mat. Stacy has one extra, but plan on bringing your own in case a newcomer needs it.

Why Yoga?

We’re all about supporting the community of Santa Clarita through connection over coffee, community, and culture. Yoga is a way for us to come together as a community and to help you detox from your busy fall schedule, packed with classes, homework, jobs, and long commutes. So grab your study-weary pals and ease into a stress-relieving Saturday morning. If you’re worried about your lack of yoga experience, have no fear! Let me just tell you that my inflexible body be there, so you won’t be the silliest-looking pretzel in the class.
And did I mention it’s free? You really have nothing to lose. Stay a while afterward and treat yourself to a calming Spearmint, Rooibos, or Jasmine Green Loose Leaf pot of tea. Doesn’t that sound like a beautiful start to the weekend?
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