Share the Love

April 29, 2011 § 18 Comments

In honor of the love, umm… fashion, paparazzi and Royal hullabaloo, I wanted to share what I am loving.

I am loving and missing the Spaniard.

I love looking back at old pictures. It makes me feel close, even when I’m far.

I love Florida skies and Florida trees.

I love Florida weather that just demands thick, creamy, cold, smoothies!

Banana / Coconut / Chocolate / Heaven!

I love Publix.

Where shopping is a pleasure.

I love perfectly pedicured Shrek green toes…

and matching neck flare!

$10 on sale = basically free!

[I love the friend that taught me that.]

I love holding babies.

Practicing for the impending birth. [SO excited!]

I love grapefruit. Especially this one.

I love that though I am currently in Florida, but this picture of citrus gold was ironically taken in Paris.

I love that this picture completely illustrates the relationship between my brother and I.

Can you see the love?

What are you royally loving today?

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Surviving Spain: My Vegan Eats

April 28, 2011 § 21 Comments

You know how when you wait for something for so long, the anticipation builds up and the reality can never live up to the dream?

That is how I feel about this post. Oh how long it has been waiting.

The internet Gods have been mean to me. We are still fighting.

I hope you enjoy!

_______________________________________________________

At the very basics of survival you will find food. Second to water, I am sure … and then I think we all need love.

Love - check!

I’ve had multiple questions regarding my vegan eats. How exactly do I survive in Spain? [But first, how do I tackle this topic as eloquently and respectfully as possible. After all, I do love one it’s citizens.]
I told my vegetable loving story over here, if you want to catch up.

Spain DOES love veggies!

But if I’m honest, it’s hard. I hate that dinner time is 9 pm… at the earliest! This is the absolute hardest part for me. I am starving. Yes, I can snack until dinner but then what’s the fun of dinner? I don’t want a snack, I want dinner. And worse than eating late, is going to bed full. My body just doesn’t like it. I once slept on the couch so I could sleep upright. No bueno.

I also have to go to the grocery store at least every other day. [Trust me, this is no Whole Foods experience.] Refrigerators are small and my food is big. And heavy. My list always includes grapefruit, pears, kiwi, carrots, tomato… just to name a few of the more weighty items.

The Organic Grocery. One of my favs, but clear across the city!

Why is food so beautiful?

Hmm… well, basically those are my gripes. Other than that I am A-okay!

Europe brought my love of Pellegino!

I eat breakfast at home and snack throughout the day. I always carry food on me when I am in the city and eat when I am hungry. I’ve never been big on “lunch time.”

I can’t survive without these: Greens Plus Bars. A trafficed good from the States.

My life blood.

I usually cook dinner at home and eat at a Kristen reasonable time. I try to eat later than I’d prefer just so when we eat out it’s not such a stretch. Some days this works. Some days it doesn’t.

My Spanish Kitchen

And when I say cook, I mean blend hummus, chop veggies, make salads, roast things, etc… There is nothing Le Cordon Bleu going on over here.

Hummus in the making!

My at home eats are similar to what I eat in the U.S. The only thing that I miss is choice.
America is the land of plenty. Aisle after aisle to decide on crackers and cereal. Not to mention 9 different apple varieties. Sometimes I miss this, sometimes I am thankful I’m not stuck in front of the trail mix section. [My all time weakness.]

Though the bean selection is not lacking!

The Spaniard and I operate on different schedules. I eat at my time, he eats at his time. It works for us.

When we go out, we make the earliest dinner reservation possible. Our favorite Italian will make reservations at 8:30 pm. You better believe we are the first ones in the door!

You know you want to go with us!

Another thing we do that helps me manage is before dinner drinks. It is absurd to me to be sitting at home waiting to leave for dinner at 8 or 8:30 pm. Going out for drinks helps me not notice my grumbling tummy.

My favorite!

Once we get to the restaurant eating is usually no problem.

We go to places that we know have dishes that can be ordered “sin queso, carne y huevos.” Though convincing a server that it’s possible to customize food is an entirely different story for another day!

Tomato Salad Art

The tapas culture is completely different. Meat, cheese, a lot of fried food (which I don’t do) are a plenty! Again, I always carry food and eat what is available. I have had a few questions on vegetarian and pescetarian tapas and I am going to write a separate post on that topic. Stay tuned!

For the most part I have really fallen in love with restaurant dining in Madrid. There are some amazing places with fantastic food!

Soy Gelato in Barcelona! Also available in Madrid!

I always look forward to date night with my love, talking over drinks, ordering different courses, and sitting until we are good and ready to leave. There is no rushing and no quick table turnover. After all, servers aren’t tipped here. Sit as long as you like!

I would say a big part of surviving in any new culture is being flexible. But there are just some things I am not flexible on. When it comes to what I eat I am as particular as they come. If I decide to eat eggs one day it will because I want to eat them. Not because there was no other option.

Pack your own Almond Milk for Lisbon's famous coffee.

I have always been a stubborn gal. I like to think it’s one of my endearing qualities. [No comments on that.]

So it IS possible to survive in a pork producing country without eating any. You just may be starving until 9 pm.

Happy and fed in Milan.

Questions:
What would be the hardest part for you living in a new culture?
What food products from your home country can you absolutely NOT live without?

grunt and moan

April 27, 2011 § 4 Comments

Who loves technology?

**raises her hand with a smile**

Who hates technology?

**raises her hand with a grunt and moan**

I know what I know about computers, routers, firewalls and blogging.

But what I don’t know is made glaringly apparent when problems arise.

Patience. Never been one of my strong suits.

I’m working on it…the patience and the problems… with many grunts and moans.

Are you technologically savvy? Care to give lessons? Or the name of your fix it person?

Where Am I?

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