Hey everyone! I just returned from a lovely 10-day vacation on the east coast, where I spent the first few days with my mother and youngest sister in the Virginia country. We passed the days getting plenty of sleep, visiting a few historic sites and neighborhoods in Richmond and Williamsburg, antiquing, playing board games and laughing. Lord knows I needed deep belly laughter this time of year and lots of it!
We also visited Washington D.C. for the first time (and for only five, whirlwind hours!), and ended up in Philadelphia reuniting with one of my oldest and dearest friends, Telly. We grew up in Miami together, and we pretty much revert back to our middle school humor and dynamics every single time. It’s a blessing to have a friend who still gets you and your Miami/Caribbean quirks even if years pass by without a visit. I also got to meet her three little girls for the first time and they were absolutely squishy, precious and very chatty and energetic like their hilarious and very extroverted mother. I also got a little taste of Philly in the three days I spent there–oh, and according to a travel guide my husband was reading, I’m not ALLOWED to call the city Philly if I never lived there. Is this true?? Do I really have to say all six syllables?
If you’re a gluten free person passing through Philadelphia and are feeling kinda indulgent, I recommend going to Paesano’s in the Italian Market district and asking for their version of a GF Philly cheesesteak at the cash register (it’s not on the menu and seems to be surrounded by a bit of secrecy). Also, asking for a PHILLY cheese steak like I did is a dead giveaway that you’re a big ol’ tourist and my friend laughed at me like I deserved to get my underwear pulled over my head and shoved into a school locker. The locals call it “cheese steak.” Be cool like them. I also had an excellent Southwest Burger at Couch Tomato in Mannyunk, a restaurant with several gluten free sandwich and pizza options. And I very much enjoyed my tacos and margaritas at Taqueria Feliz in that same neighborhood later that day. The food in Philly did not disappoint! What did disappoint me was that I only ate Puerto Rican food ONCE on my trip. There is a LARGE Puerto Rican presence in the city and I was so looking forward to some amazing mofongo and roasted pork shoulder, but I ran out of eating time 🙁 Oh well, until next time!
Anyway, onto my Friday Wellness list! Except it’s Monday…I was too busy with friends, family and good food to post last week 🙂
-I’m really digging Julie Bauer’s Paleo Cookbook and her no-nonsense sensibilities. I made the above, pistachio rosemary lamb chop recipe from her book, as well as her hearty bacon and beef stew from the book, except I substituted the beef with lamb. Both were big hits with my husband. You can check out her blog at PaleOmg.
-I’ve been enjoying videos from Holistic Habits, a Canadian health and natural beauty vlogger. Check out her video on hydrosols for skin and hair!
-I also just discovered the affordable, natural beauty company, Silk Naturals, and ordered a bunch of $1 samples and a couple of full-sized products. Why don’t more beauty companies offer samples like this? Anyway, I’ll have to do a post about my findings in the near future! So far, I’m really into their Petal blush, a peachy-pink hue and their velvet matte lipstick in a burnt caramel/tan shade called Pinup. Only six bucks each!
-If you have dry, “clogged”, constricted sinuses or any kind of sinus issues (leaky, drippy, stuffy), be sure to check out herbalist Jim McDonald’s article on surviving sinusitis. I’m eager to try the Ayurvedic practice of nasya, or inhaling oil to the sinuses. I’ll keep you posted on my findings.
-I’m obsessed with Joseph, a trio of harmonizing sisters from Portland I heard live at the Doug Fir Lounge in Portland last year. Do yourselves a favor, listen to their heavenly, harmony-laden folk and assume a fetal position in the corner. (They also recently performed at a Prairie Home Companion!)