What's New?

Boyfriend Birthday Ideas

Hey 💕 so this past Monday was my boyfriend’s (Logan) 21st birthday. I was able to spend a few days with him so we did something different every day. If you are short on ideas and want to get creative here’s a cute idea that I did for his gifts.

I forgot to take a picture of them before he opened!! I used the 5 senses; touch, taste, smell, sound and sight. Here is what I got him for each gift:

Sound-a waterproof shower speaker
Sight- Nike running tennis shoes
Touch– Nike logo t-shirt
Taste- 2 huge cinnamon buns from a bakery
Smell– men’s body wash

This was after he opened but I wrapped all the gifts in black paper and typed out the senses then added glitter around it. Logan loved it!

Also on Monday we went to Red Lobster with his parents, I haven’t been there in years and it was delicious. Of course we got Logan to order a mixed drink (since he is 21).

 

On Tuesday, I wanted to take Logan out for dinner alone as another birthday treat. I wanted to take him somewhere he has never been before which was The Melting Pot. If you have never been there it is a must for a special occasion such as a birthday or anniversary. It is a little pricy but worth it! We ordered a 4-course meal so we got cheese fondue (comes with vegetables, apples and tons of bread), salads, an entrée (we got pork, chicken and steak) and I ordered double chocolate fondue dessert, just for him. Haha.

I forgot to take a picture of the chocolate before we ate it all, I ordered a s’mores chocolate fondue and a turtle chocolate. Some things that we had to dip in was pound cake, a lot of fruit, brownies, rice krispys, marsh mellows, graham crackers, cheesecake and more.

Today is Wednesday, we decided to go out shopping and we got Starbucks. Logan has enjoyed his 21st birthday.

If you are looking for ideas to do something with your special someone or friend or family the senses gifts are cute, simple and meaningful.

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What's New?

Part 2: Europe and 9 days (Italy)

Hello all! Hope you had a great Memorial Day and ate some delicious food and relaxed with family and friends.

I know I shared some pictures from my Europe trip when I went to Switzerland. I also want to share some from Italy. I loved both places the same, though they were different I thought it was nice to see the different cultures and languages. I have hundreds of pictures and stories that I would love to share but going to keep it limited to some of my favorites 🙂

I could go on and on about the food in Italy. Let me first talk about my love for Gelato. The best Gelato I had was in Venice, Italy. Venice is very packed as you can see from the picture below. It is a tourist spot and it is a maze. No joke, it took me an hour to find the bus stop. I kept making turns and ending up in dead ends. Kind of scary but the buildings are all so pretty. I was told if you make mental notes of where you are by looking at cathedrals you can find your way around. There is this gelato shop deep in the middle of Venice, I’m not sure of the name but I know it is 5 dollars and worth it. The gelato I got was a chocolate cone with sprinkles and a dark chocolate flavor on the bottom with a salted caramel flavor on the top. I only had two licks and was trying to get a chocolate chunk and dropped my cone 😦 I bought another one because it was so good but I wasted 5 dollars.

IMG_0051 Venice, Italy

 

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I took a Gondola ride in Venice which can cost about 80 euros for a ride. I rode with 5 other people and we split the 80 so it wasn’t as bad as riding alone. It was about a 30 minute stroll around Venice. We went under the bridges and got to see pretty buildings, restaurants and talk with the Gondola workers about the history. Though it is expensive it is definitely a must if you go to Venice. We got tons of pretty pictures of Venice while on the water. As you can see fashion wasn’t my concern that day because I had blisters from other shoes on my feet so I just wore my tennis shoes to walk in. IMG_0059.JPG

While in Italy I went to the cheese factory in Parma, Italy to see how Parmesan cheese is made. It was cool to see and way different from what I expected. I actually did not like the cheese. I am probably used to processed american cheese.

While there all I ate was bread, pasta, pizza and gelato. I am an exercise junkie and always eat healthy 98% of the time. This killed me eating so bad, every restaurant I went to I could not find vegetables. It got to the point where I was like this could be a once in a lifetime trip might as well enjoy it. I had tons of nutella stuffed things also such as muffins, croissants and my favorite from the whole trip was this nutella stuffed donut. I was in love when I saw this, haha.

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The best nutella donut 

The day before I left I went wine tasting in Domaso, Italy. I took a ferry through Lake Como (where I learned George Clooney actually has a mansion on the lake supposedly). Domaso is a very rich part of Italy. It was very pretty and the houses were gorgeous. We went to a wine cellar where they served us food and turns out George Clooney picked out this wine for his wedding there and Flava Flave shot a music video there. At the end of the Wine tasting they brought out a drink called Grappa. So Grappa is made fresh from the seed of the grapes. The alcohol content is 60% alcohol which is very high if you did not know. Higher than Vodka, etc. I am 21 and legally allowed to drink in America. However, I did not drink much wine and did not drink the Grappa. I did not want to get drunk or feel anything, it is a wine tasting after all the point is to taste not drink hard. I had a 4 am wake up call the next morning as well. I took a picture to show the Grappa.

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Grappa
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Wine tasting in Domaso, Italy

I had a cooking class while there as well and made some amazing pasta, gnocchi covered in pesto sauce and tiramisu. Hands down the best pasta I have ever had before. The class was 3 hours long then I got to eat what I prepared. My feet were KILLING me. I give them props, a lot of work goes into making pasta but that hard work pays off. Since I have been home I have made lasagna from the recipes I got there and its amazing. Homemade is way better than canned.

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After the cooking class with food I made

I also made a stop in Milan where I of course went shopping. I only had 2 hours but I visited the Duomo di Milano Cathedral and strolled around some shops. There was a red carpet premiere for a tv show or movie called 1993 I think it is big in Italy? There were tons of people taking videos and news reporters and people being interviewed on the red carpet. I didn’t know them but I stopped and watched for a little bit. While at the Duomo cathedral there are people who try to get money and target tourist. This guy got mad because I wouldn’t give him money for corn and he threw it at me. They were very rude and I was angry about that. So always watch your surroundings and people targeting tourist, trust me I know I stand out.IMG_9824.JPG

I also got to hold pigeons and feed them from my hand there. Milan is a must place to visit if you are going to Italy. IMG_9858.PNG

A lot of shops close early in Europe so I only got to browse in a few but I did buy 2 pair of shorts from Zara. I have never been in a Zara and have always wanted to go so this was really cool for me. It was huge! Some other stores on the strip in Milan was Prada, Louis Vuitton and other name brand stores. They were closed when I got to them.

While leaving Italy we flew over mountains that were insanely beautiful. They were covered in snow. Though I had a lot of fun in Europe I was ready to get home and get back to my clean eating, exercise and sleep that I lost because of the time difference. This trip was such an amazing experience that I am glad I got to be a part of. I would love to go back to Europe and travel through it on my own or with friends some day. I know I will be back soon. I tried to share a lot of my best memories without making a super long post. Hopefully this will make you want to go too.

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Domaso, Italy

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What's New?

Europe and 9 days (Switzerland)

Hello all!

I have been away and enjoying my time on a trip. My wifi did not work well in Europe so it was hard to get on and post things. I went to Europe for 9 days and want to share some pictures and adventures. This post will be about Switzerland and I will do another one about Italy soon.

On May 7th I left America and got on a plane to go to Switzerland. I stopped in London where I have always wanted to go but was on a timed schedule and couldn’t make it out of the airport to see anything. I was bummed about that but the airport was really cool and I know I’ll go to London one day as I have always wanted to visit.

I jumped on a second plane in London and flew into Geneva, Switzerland. The total time it took to get to Switzerland from American was about 13 hours. I have never been on a plane before and was a little nervous and felt a little sick due to turbulence. I could not sleep at all on the plane and when I arrived in Switzerland it was 6 hours ahead of America so I lost a full night of sleep, that is always fun, ha.

I first went to Geneva lake and automatically thought Europe was beautiful. I had free time to walk around for about two hours so I visited a tiny cottage cafe near the lake and a chocolate shop, however I didn’t buy any chocolate….yet.

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Chocolate in Geneva

 

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Lake Geneva

Next I walked around Geneva and admired all the buildings. I noticed some are the Gothic type architecture, which I love. Then I went to dinner because I haven’t had anything to eat since the plane when I was in American time and was starving. I was staying in a hotel in Lausanne which is about an hour from Geneva. I decided to walk to Pinte Beeson, a restaurant that is known for cheese fondue. I had chicken, vegetables, potatoes and fruit.  image4.JPG

I came on this trip thinking I could eat healthy but really all I could find was bread, pastries, croissants and meat and cheese so I was like well might as well enjoy these next 8 days 😉

I have a lot of pictures of the roads and shops around Switzerland but this post would be so long if I posted them all so I’m just going to highlight my days.

The breakfast in the hotels was insanely good. I have never drunk so much coffee in my life, I think it is a European thing? I ate so many nutella stuffed croissants. In American we are used to eggs, bacon, sausage, etc for breakfast but in Europe I came across meats, cheese and bread. It was cool to see the difference. The peanut butter was so good, I think better than American peanut butter. I have the name of it but could not find it in any shop that I went into. I also ate something called muesli. Oh. my. It is amazing. It is kind of like dry oatmeal and you would add water or milk to it. The oats soak it up and you can eat it cold and you don’t have to cook it! I would add seeds and a teaspoon of peanut butter. I ate very good to say the least.

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Muesli

I went to the red cross in Geneva where I got to hear a presentation and visit the Aids museum that is in it. The building is very pretty and the museum was so cool to go through and see everything. There is a cafeteria in the building where I had this amazing spinach quiche.

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The Red Cross

I also went to see the Swiss Alps. I am used to being in 70-80 degree weather and went to Switzerland where it was 55ish, which was a big difference to me, haha. The Alps were beautiful. This was my favorite day of the trip, I went to shops and stayed around the mountains for about 2 hours. I loved it and would go back!

 

 

 

 

 

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Swiss Alps

I would love to go back to Switzerland, I feel like I was rushed because I did not have much time but the chocolate was fantastic. I want to go back just to get that. The streets are very clean and all the hotels I stayed in were really about recycling and being clean.  I also tried my first gelato here and after trying gelato I never want to go back to regular ice cream. I’ll share pictures of gelato in Italy on another post. I wish I could share everything I did day by day and all the shops and restaurants I went into. Switzerland is truly a beautiful place to go.

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What's New?

Unicorn everything?

I think I am late on this trend. All of a sudden everything around me was unicorn this…unicorn that. But I love the magical feeling the word “unicorn” brings.

I started seeing unicorn food such as hot drinks, unicorn fudge bars, trail mix and of course the new Unicorn Starbucks drink that just hit the menu this week for a limited time only.

I was walking to class and saw some students carrying a pink frappuccino looking drink and thought, wow what is that? Then leaving class an hour later I then saw somebody else with this pink looking drink. I was confused at first and took it to twitter where I saw a Unicorn creation from Starbucks. Though I am scared to try it because of all the sugar in it, I have heard mixed reviews about it. Have you tried it and do you like it?

I thought I would share some Unicorn recipes just in case you wanted to feel a little more magical 😉 I have to say, I am loving the look of all the desserts! They are so pretty and colorful.

Unicorn Hot Chocolate:Image result for unicorn hot chocolate

Ingredients:

  • 1 c. white chocolate chips
  • 2 c. half-and-half
  • 2 c. milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • pink food coloring (to your liking)
  • whipped cream (to taste)
  • sprinkles (for garnish)

Directions:

  • Place the white chocolate chips, half-and-half, milk, and vanilla in a medium-sized sauce pan.
  • Heat over medium heat, whisking continuously until hot (do NOT boil).
  • Whisk in food coloring until you get your desired color.
  • Add to individual mugs and top with whipped cream and sprinkles.

 

Unicorn Bark:

from thespruce.com

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Ingredients:

  • 1 lb white candy coating
  • 1 oz each various candy coating colors (suggested: use 4-6 colors)
  • Assorted sprinkles and candy pearls

Directions:

  • 1. Cover a baking sheet with waxed paper or aluminum foil. Melt the white and colored candy coating separately in the microwave, each in individual bowls. Heat and stir until ever color is smooth and fluid.
  • 2. Pour the white coating out onto the baking sheet, and smooth it into an even layer about 1/4-inch thick.
  • 3. Working quickly, drizzle the other colors of candy coating over the white coating in a random pattern.
  • Drag a toothpick or knife through the bark to create pretty swirls.
  • 4. While the coating is still wet, add rainbow sprinkles and candy pearls on top. Refrigerate the tray to set the bark, for at least 25 minutes.
  • 5. Once set, break the break or cut the bark into pieces. Store in an airtight container at cool room temperature for up to 2 weeks.

Unicorn Popcorn:

from Bethcakes.com

Ingredients:

unicorn popcorn! - bethcakes.com

  • 1 (8-oz) box Orville Redenbacher Naturals popcorn, need 2 bags
  • 1½ cups Wilton ColorBurst Candy Melts
  • ½ cup purple Wilton Candy Melts
  • ½ cup blue Wilton Candy Melts
  • 1 cup white Wilton Candy Melts, divided (optional)
  • small colorful sprinkles
  • pink heart and gold star sprinkes

Directions:

  • Pop one bag of popcorn according to package directions. Transfer to a large bowl and remove any unpopped kernels.
  • Pop the second bag of popcorn. Divide in half and put each half in a separate bowl. (So you’ll have one large bowl and two smaller bowls!) Remove unpopped kernels.
  • Melt ColorBurst candy melts according to package directions. Pour over the popcorn in the large bowl and use a rubber spatula to stir until coated. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread out into an even layer and immediately sprinkle with sprinkles. Let the candy coating set and then break clumps back into pieces.
  • Combine ½ cup blue candy melts and ½ cup white candy melts. Heat for 30 seconds, stir, and repeat. Pour over one of the smaller bowls of popcorn and stir until coated. Spread out on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. (I used one baking sheet for the white popcorn and fit both the purple and blue on a second baking sheet.) Sprinkle with sprinkles and let candy coating set. Break popcorn back into pieces.
  • Repeat with purple and white candy melts.
  • Combine all popcorn in a bowl or bag and enjoy!

Unicorn Rainbow Cheesecake Dip:

from chocolatecoveredkatie.com

No one can resist the charms of this magical rainbow dip - the recipe is kid-friendly and super easy to make!

Ingredients:

  • 12 oz cream cheese, such as TJs vegan
  • 1 cup plain yogurt, such as coconutmilk yogurt
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup unrefined sugar, or xylitol for sugar-free
  • 1 additional tbsp sugar, or pinch uncut stevia
  • food coloring OR a pinch turmeric, acai powder, spirulina, and blue spirulina

Directions:

  • Bring cream cheese to room temperature. Blend all ingredients except the colors until smooth. Although a blender, food processor, or hand blender will yield smoothest results, you can technically stir by hand if you must. Divide among four little dishes and stir a different coloring into each dish. (Be very light-handed if using turmeric and spirulina, as these flavors are strong and a little goes a long way.) Drop spoonfuls of each color into a serving bowl, alternating colors. Then swirl colors together with a spoon. Leftovers can be covered and refrigerated up to three days.

Unicorn Ice Cream:

from bigbearswife.com

 Yield: 1 loaf pan of ice cream

Unicorn Ice Cream (5)

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups heavy cream (1 pint)
  • 2 tablespoons vanilla
  • 1 (14 oz) can sweet condensed milk
  • Neon Pink Food Coloring
  • Neon Purple Food Coloring
  • Neon Blue Food Coloring
  • Neon Green Food Coloring
  • Rainbow SprinklesDirections:
  • In large bowl (or a stand mixer) whip heavy cream and vanilla together a few minutes until stiff peaks form.
  • Add in the sweetened condensed milk and whisk until combined.
  • Separate mixture into 4 bowls.
  • Tint one bowl of ice cream base mixture with a few drops of the neon pink icing. Mix well. Add more pink and mix if desired.
  • Do the same thing with the remaining colors and remaining bowls of ice cream base mixture.
  • You should have one bowl of pink ice cream base, one bowl of purple, one bowl of blue and one bowl of neon green.
  • Spoon mixtures into a loaf pan, alternating spoonfuls of color.
  • Once all of the mixture is in the loaf pan, take a knife and run it through the load pan in a figure 8 a few times to swirl the ice cream colors.
  • Sprinkle with rainbow sprinkles.
  • Freeze for several hours or over night until frozen.
  • **NOTE/TIP** – a glass loaf pan will work but a metal one will freeze the ice cream better.