Vegan – Plant Based (or close to it!) at Disney’s EPCOT Food and Wine Festival
It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Oh wait, wrong season. But it is Food & Wine Festival time which is one of the best times to be at Disney World. The 2016 EPCOT Food and Wine Festival has begun. The Traveling Gals have made their first visit of hopefully many! Every year seems to get better and better. No matter how many times I visit, I still feel a thrill walking from the Beach Club through the International Gateway and into France. It’s even better during the Fest!
There are new offerings and returning favorites this year! All together there are 25 booths in the freshly branded “Global Marketplaces”. The Chew Collective, Chocolate Studio, Islands of the Caribbean and Wine and Dine Studio are all new. My focus is on the healthier fare. Here are our picks for staying plant based at EPCOT during Food & Wine! Read More
You may remember a previous post where we introduced you to our longtime family friend Carol D’Anca and her website Food Not Meds and books she has written on living a healthy, plant-based lifestyle. Carol also takes people on trips to Italy and she has a trip coming up in May 2017! Of course we wanted to share this with you because Italy is all about the food and culture. Carol’s family origins are in Naples and this trip will take you through Naples and the Amalfi Coast. You will get to experience Italy from a local perspective and enjoy all of the fresh foods and wine. Can’t forget the wine!
The trip is 4 nights in Naples and 4 nights on the Amalfi Coast staying at 4-star hotels. You will get to see all the sights as well as meet local people. A highlight of the trip is the cooking class with the trained Neopolitan chefs at your hotel. There will be plenty of time for shopping as well!
Healthy eating is probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you think of a cruise. You might instead be thinking of the 24 hour buffet. However it is possible to eat healthy. We do it every time we cruise without sacrificing the enjoyment of eating! It all starts with a positive mindset, some willpower (okay maybe a lot of willpower), and a little creativity.
The Basics of Eating Well on a Cruise
The Buffet – Often times the buffet gets a bad rap, but it can be your best friend when trying to eat well. Start by perusing every option available and then put together the best choices. Of course, salads are usually the best option, but don’t just stick to the salad bar. There are often great choices to add to a salad at the burger condiment bar or the taco salad bar. You can also take a simple baked potato or plain rice and add to it for a healthy and tasty lunch.
Don’t Be Afraid to Ask – While eating at the buffet, get to know the chefs that are walking around. Ask questions and don’t be afraid to make special requests. Everyone is usually very accommodating. We tell the head waiter on the first night of dinner about our various diet restrictions. The waiters appreciate this because then for the rest of the cruise they know what to suggest and what needs to be adapted. The last cruise the kitchen created a special and delicious entrée adapted from the regular menu each night. The chef even came out to comment on how he enjoyed the challenge of creating something different for a change.
One of the best parts of taking a vacation is stepping out of your everyday routine. For most of us, working out while on vacation is probably the last thing on your mind. Even though you know you should, you really don’t want to. For me, I work out extra hard and extra long the entire week leading up to going out of town. This helps give me the boost I need to not have to maintain my early morning regimen while I’m away. However, I still want to fit into my bathing suit, so I try to stay as active as possible while having a great time! Check out some of these suggestions to stay active with having to “work out”:
This is a question hotly debated by parents all over the country. My answer to this question is YES! You should absolutely allow your child to miss school for travel. The only caveat being if they are truly struggling and even then you should still consider it.
In my own experience, I have never hesitated at taking my daughter out of school to travel from pre-school throughout college. I am sure this is why she is the main Traveling Gal, Ashley! Education goes far beyond the classroom. While the classroom is the foundation and largest part of studies, life experience is crucial to learning and overall education. I have always stressed the importance of a solid, first-rate schooling and my daughter achieved that goal. However, there is no substitute for experiencing culture, lifestyle, history and landscape for yourself. To study World War I and II and then travel through Europe only strengthens your knowledge and deepens your understanding. After learning about the Vietnam War and then traveling through Vietnam you gain perspective that can never be found in books. The same can be said for the current world situation. We are inundated with information regarding the global state or affairs. To visit other places you only hear about, can completely reshape your mindset about issues and develop a more well-rounded viewpoint. There is also unparalleled benefit in spending time as others live in other parts of the world or even our own country. Firsthand exposure to other cultures and standards of living is an education unto itself.
It is up to you as the parent to make the most of travel. You need to emphasize the educational aspects and teach your children how to appreciate learning while having fun. Anticipation and planning are an important part of taking a big trip. Here are some ideas on how to prepare in advance to make the most out of the academic side of travel:
Research important significant places in each city you visit and read so you are informed before you get there;
Download podcasts that correspond to places you are visiting. Many museums and historical landmarks offer podcasts on-line.
Read travel essays or novels that take place in the countries you are visiting;
Educate yourself and your children on exciting events that have taken place where you are traveling;
Try a new sport or going to a sporting event from the country you will be in.
My daughter has been provided with a very well rounded education as well as a mature view of the world and her place in it through both the classroom and travel. Although an excellent student, her journeys while growing up have proved equally important. As a Mother, our travels together have been the best times of my life. It is priceless bonding time and worth a few make-up tests and homework assignments.
Oven Baked “Fried Rice” – Quick and Easy Everyone loves fried rice! This recipe is a base and can be easily customized to accommodate your preferences. It is tasty, quick and very easy. It was given the seal of approval by our whole family. Give it a try! Traveling Gals Tip: This recipe is perfectly paired with Miso… Read More
Real Food for Healthy People by Carol D’Anca One of our passions is healthy eating and we are lucky enough to have a close family friend who has written two great books on the importance of why we need to eat healthy. Carol D’Anca has found her passion in healthy eating and encouraging others to take… Read More
How to Stay on Track with New Year’s Resolutions! How many of you are maintaining your New Year’s resolutions? For most, by now good intentions have given way to bad habits. Without a realistic plan and steps to achieve your goals, resolutions fall by the wayside. Now that the fun of the holidays have passed… Read More