I love coffee shops! Just to grab a quick drink, catch up with a friend, or do some work. Coffee shops are the best, but I do think we can agree that some are better than others. Since I’ve been home I’m exploring more of my city and trying some new places that I haven’t tried before or were not here when I left. Today I’m sharing some of my favorite coffee shops in Indianapolis, so you can grab a book or a friend and go get some coffee!
I recently went here for the first time and loved it! I had a golden milk latte with cashew milk and it was delicious. This coffee shop is located in the former coat check room at the historic Athenaeum Theatre.
One of my favorite things to do when traveling is trying all the local food and drinks! Lisbon did not disappoint in that area at all. Situated right on the ocean, you can get fresh seafood and enjoy a beautiful view. The Portuguese also really love to eat meat, so you will see a lot of meat dishes on the menu. I’m starting to get hungry thinking about it so let’s get right into the food and drinks you should try in Lisbon!
Pastel de Nata
These are custard filled tarts that are sooo good! I didn’t really think I would like them as much as I did. There are rumors about what place has the best ones, but to be honest I didn’t have one I didn’t like. So get them everywhere!
Or Vinho Verde. This wine is not literally green, but it just means it is young wine. It is usually sweeter also. I was also not disappointed at all at my glasses of green wine 😉
There is A LOT of seafood dishes in Portugal. They have so many that are their “specialty” too so it’s hard not to just put all of them on this list. At a restaurant you are at ask them what their specialty is or what is Portuguese and they will help you out.
Each restaurant will have a choice to get some local cheeses. I would definitely recommend trying some. You can even get a meat and cheese board if you would like.
You can get a liter of sangria for around 12-14 euros and it is very refreshing. Eating some cheese and drinking sangria while sitting on a patio is my happy place!
There are so many different foods to try in Lisbon! I don’t think you will be disappointed with any of it. I will say I was surprised that it was not as cheap as what people advertised. On average we spent 20 euros on a meal (it did include wine or a drink of some sort). This may be because Lisbon is getting more popular so prices are rising.
If you want to read about what I did while I was in Lisbon click HERE. If you are interested in taking day trips click HERE.
What was your favorite thing to eat in Portugal?
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So, I’m not vegan. Since I am living in someone else’s home and they buy my food and I cook dinner, I’m not going to put my diet on them. I do plan on going back to vegan when I return home though. As I said before I do cook dinner for the family and I do cook vegan recipes for them a lot, but sometimes I will have meat or something on the side for the kids to add in. The kids have tried so many new things since I have been cooking for them and I’m excited they have been open to them. Here are some of my favorite vegan recipes that I cook quite often!
Not only is this recipe delicious, but it is also soooo easy! It only takes about 25 minutes to make. If I make it just for myself, I like to take the leftovers for lunch and also freeze it for quick meals in the future. Here in Finland I will make Shrimp for the kids on the side to put in theirs so they will be enticed to try it 😉 You can find the recipe HERE.
So we are really into lemon pasta here. The pasta absorbs the lemon so well and you don’t need to add any cream, so it’s pretty healthy. I really like this recipe because you also have zucchini and chickpeas. I will say that I did not like the chickpeas roasted in this pasta, maybe in a salad. But the crunchy didn’t go well in my opinion and I think it would be better if they were just cooked. You can find the recipe HERE.
I love love love chili! It’s the perfect fall and winter meal. I do like to eat it anytime though really. This recipe includes sweet potatoes, which is another favorite of mine. You can find the recipe HERE.
I couldn’t leave a vegan desert off of my list! These energy bites are the best. I eat them for a quick pick-me-up or when I have a chocolate craving. They give you that sugar taste without the sugar! You can make them any way that you want, you just need something to make them “stick” together like almond butter. The energy bites pictured are called almond joy bites. You just need 1/2 cup of almond butter, 1 cup of dates, 1-2 scoops of chocolate protein (you can get my favorite kind HERE), and 1/2 cup shredded coconut. Add all of the ingredients into a food processor, roll into bite sized balls and then roll into coconut, and enjoy!
Spain is one of my food heavens! My number one is still France, but Spain is right behind it. Sitting at an outdoor table with friends, beer, and tapas is my ideal day. While on my weekend trip in Barcelona we even tried to do a tapas crawl (we didn’t make it very far). But I did get to try some yummy food. If you are planning a trip soon, I’m sharing food you have to try in Barcelona!
Patatas Bravas (Spicy Potatoes)
This was a group favorite. The sauce is almost like a chipotle mayo. Overall super delicious and a must try.
I don’t think it’s a trip to Spain without trying some paella! Since you are right on the Mediterranean Sea you can get some with fresh seafood! If you are not a seafood fan you can also have meat or vegetarian version.
The only reason I actually tried this is because it was brought to our table on accident. No one ordered it, but we ate it anyways! We were all glad it came to our table.
Spain is a great place to relax either alone or with family/friends! The relaxed feel, architecture, food will make you fall in love instantly. If you have never been abroad or looking for a place for you next trip I would definitely recommend Spain as your destination. I have only been to Barcelona, but I have only heard good things from others who have traveled to different cities.
This is just a short list of the good food available in Barcelona. I could go on for days!
Summer getting closer and I’m not sure if my clothes are getting any looser (maybe the opposite)! I’m currently living in Finland where the main food group is CARBS. Bread, pasta, and more bread. Oh and potatoes. Since I am an au pair I live with a host family I don’t get to choose my food all the time. When I first arrived I didn’t want to be disrespectful by denying their food. Now, 7 months in, I want my healthy food back!
Since I will be returning to the States in two short months I decided that now is the time to start shedding the bad eating habits I have picked up these past months and get back on a healthy track! Here is how I did it!
I met a friend through an online travel group and she was posting about a 10 day program to help get you shred your bad eating habits and replace them with healthier ones. Last month was my first one and I am hooked now! You get meal plans, shopping lists, a food and exercise dairy, a private group to talk to others doing the shred, and a coach who you have access to 24/7! Seriously so much! If you are looking for something to do to help you get on track I would recommend doing this! If you have any questions on when the next Shred 10 is happening, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Drinking More Water
This is like a no brainer, but sometimes so hard! I also found that waking up and drinking a glass of lemon water or just water right away is a great way to boost your metabolism! I’ve seen a lot of apps to remind you to drink water, but I haven’t found one I love yet. If you have one let me know!
Don’t Eat After 8pm
In Finland they have this thing called a “night snack” where they eat before going to bed. I started doing this (because I was hungry since all I ate was carbs all day) and got into a bad habit! To break this I drank a glass of water when I felt hungry and it help!
Protein powder has been a lifesaver for me! It keeps me full and I love love love having a smoothie in the morning! My favorite it this protein powder with spinach and a banana. I sometimes add other fruits depending on what is available. They also have chocolate and even individual packets of protein powder for when you are on the go! This has been a lifesaver for when I am traveling!
Get Your Vitamins!
I recently found out that most people have a vitamin D deficiency and they don’t know it! This can make you tired and also feel depressed. So if you don’t currently take vitamin D, go and get you some! I got mine from Amazon.
I also reallyyyy love these capsules. As I’ve mentioned before I’m an au pair and I cook for a family with 3 young boys. Sometimes they can be really picky (what kid isn’t) and new things don’t always go over well. So most of the time pasta is a go-to food for them. I also don’t buy the groceries so it isn’t very reasonable for me to ask for a whole separate grocery list for myself. This has caused me to eat a lot less fruits and veggies than before. But these capsules are amazing because they are real fruits, vegetables, and berries! It feels good knowing I will still get some of the nutrients I need!
How are you getting rid of bad eating habits?
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Every time spring rolls around we start to come out of hibernation and shedding our thick layers. A lot of times, unless we have sticking to our healthy meals, we realize the extra pounds we have gained during winter. Or maybe you just want to have a fresh start on eating healthier foods. Whatever that may be, spring always feels like a fresh start and makes me want to get outside, be active, and eat fresh healthy food!
Eating healthy doesn’t have to be difficult either! I love simple recipes that don’t take forever or use a million ingredients. No one has time for that! So today I’m sharing some of my favorite healthy recipes, that are also easy, to try out this spring!
Look at this! This salad basically screams spring! I am a huge fan of salads and could eat them everyday especially during spring and summer. This salad has all my favorite things like cucumbers, strawberries, and feta cheese. It’s topped with an apple cider vinaigrette. Perfect and easy spring meal. Check out this recipe HERE!
Lately I have really been loving quiches! I used to think quiche was such a hard thing to make, but after finally making one, they are so easy! And delicious 😉 This recipe has cheery tomatoes, spinach, and used almond milk instead of milk or cream. Check out this healthy recipe HERE!
This recipe only has 7 steps and one of them is to enjoy! So quick and easy, which I love. This year I have been experimenting with citrus in foods more and have really loved using lemon in recipes. It goes great with pasta and also chicken like in this recipe. Check this healthy recipe out HERE!
Now let’s get to cooking! What’s your favorite spring recipe?
Other than the question of “what language do they speak there,” I mostly get asked how different the food is in Finland. Honestly the everyday food is not that different for me because I make dinner, but there are some traditional Finnish foods that I really love and wanted to share! Here are 10 Finnish foods you need to try!
This is one of the things on my list that I didn’t like in America, but here it is so good! Rye bread is popular in Finland and very common to eat for breakfast or night snack.
This one is not really a food, but something I think you need to try when in Finland. I hate licorice in America, but in Finland it taste amazing! You should also try salted licorice and get a mix with fruit candies in it too.
Blue cheese in Finland is completely different than in America! It is creamier and just all around better. During the Christmas time they also make a gingerbread roll with blue cheese in it. I haven’t tried it yet, but I am interested in giving it a try.
Cloudberries grow up in the Northern part of Finland, Lapland. This fruit is a must try when you’re in Finland! You can get them in yogurt, pastries, cakes, or just the berries at a local stand.
Pea soup is traditionally made on Thursdays with pancakes (see below). It tastes great with sour cream and bread!
These pancakes are thick and dense compared to American pancakes. They taste great with jam on top!
This is one of my favorite foods in Finland. They are filled with potato usually, but they can also have rice or sweet potato filling. They are traditionally topped with butter and egg, but you can also top with cheese and your favorite vegetable.
These are delicious cinnamon and cardamon rolls! You can usually find them at any cafe along with other delicious pastries.
They still call them “Swedish meatballs” here, so really you can get them in Sweden also (or at home). But there are still yummy here 🙂
The translation is “Christmas tart” and they are made starting in October. You make these along with a drink called “glogi” that is a warm mulled wine.
What is a favorite traditional food from a country you’re not from?
Since moving to Finland I have realized something about myself, I love baking! I find it not only relaxing, but also fun. One of the boys recently told one of his friends that stayed for dinner that, “I do bake a lot.” This is when it hit me, I do bake a lot and not because I just think they will like the food, but because I actually enjoy it! Some of the recipes are baking and others could be for meals! Here are my favorite recipes for fall:
In this recipe you layer the bread and apple cinnamon/bread sugar mix, which creates a great balance of bread and topping! I think my favorite part is the brown sugar cinnamon mixture 🙂
Super Simple Banana Bread
This recipe comes from Eazy Peazy Mealz (it took me five tries to write that because of autocorrect lol)
I am a big fan of banana bread! It is so easy and versatile. You can make it just the way it is or add cinnamon, chocolate chips, or blueberries! The possibilities are endless.
I really like this websites recipe also because the writer, Rachael, gives different ways to make the recipe healthier. Who doesn’t like that?
Pumpkin Spice Cookies
Pumpkin spice has to be on my list of favorite fall things! One thing I do miss being here in Finland is that they do not make a big deal out of fall and fall flavored things. I mean it’s September shouldn’t there be fall flavored everything with Halloween decorations! I mean it is already September and I have not seen one Christmas decoration out 😉 Just so Tasty posted this recipe for pumpkin spice cookies and they are SO GOOD! A perfect sweet and chewy cookie.
Do yourself a favor and make these 😉
Chili to me just screams fall. It reminds me of tailgates at IU football games.
This chili recipe is from Sprinkle Some Sugar. Pair it with some cornbread and you have yourself a perfect fall meal!
Ground Turkey Sweet Potato Skillet
It took me a while to like sweet potatoes, but now I can’t get enough of them! I eat them all year, but I think this recipe is savory and perfect for colder weather.
This recipe comes from Primavera Kitchen. Olivia, the writer for this website has a lot of healthy recipes that I love!
I hope you enjoy these as much as I do! What are your favorite recipes for fall?
Recently while out with a friend to eat, we both noticed how many people were out in downtown Indianapolis! Over the past few years there has been a growth in restaurants, apartments, and also population in Indy. One area that that is popular with great restaurants is Massachusetts Avenue or Mass Ave. I love this area and going to brunch or dinner and drinks on Friday or Saturday. I have not made my way through all of the restaurants yet, but here is my top places that I always love going to.
Bakersfieldis by far my favorite restaurant on Mass Ave. With their pitchers of margaritas (even spicy and pineapple), tacos, and guacamole can it get any better?? You can order tacos individually so you can try different flavors, my favorite one is the Mole. I also really love the Papas tostada, it has just the right amount of spice and is also meat free for my vegetarian friends.
Bru Burger has amazing burgers that are also so unique. The honey chipotle bbq burger is one of my favorites with bacon, caramelized onions, white cheddar, onion rings, bbq pulled pork, and black pepper mayo. Seriously so delicious! Their burgers do not come with a side, but I do suggest getting the bru fries along with it to share. The fries come with three house made sauces, which are all delicious.
Ralston’s DraftHouseif you love bloody mary’s, then I suggest trying one here. I like mine a little spicy, but not much so you can still enjoy it. The Peachy Pig flatbread is topped with pulled pork, cheddar, ginger, and has a peach-chipotle reduction. I never realized pulled pork and peach could be so delicious.
Mimi Blue is a restaurant that is centered around meatballs! You can even get meatball sliders. You can choose the meat that the meatballs are made from and even the sauces. They also have brunch where you can get lemon thyme pancake balls which are amazing.
I love patios, so all except Mimi Blue has great ones that are perfect for brunch or enjoying a drink. I love trying new restaurants and food, what is your favorite place to eat in Indy?