This week I noticed corn was finally in season. Hurray! I love me some corn on the cob! And next to that, I love me some vegan corn chowder!
I decided to bring back an old favourite of mine and one of my first ever blog posts back from 2010 (would you believe Mostly Amélie is nearly 10 years old?) Thi recipe conveniently makes around two tons of soup, perfect for the chilly autumn days ahead.
I’ve mentioned a few times on the ‘gram that I’ve had a crap time sleeping recently. Well, that’s not entirely accurate. I’ve slept. Upwards of ten hours at a time, at times. What I didn’t get much of is rest. I’d often wake after a long night of sleep feeling groggy and not rested, with no energy for the day ahead, and especially not for sport. So when I discovered a wearable sleep tracker ring that could help me pinpoint what I was doing wrong and help me fix it, I was all over it. Enter my Oura Ring review.
If you caught a glimpse of me in the flesh right now, you possibly wouldn’t believe that I am one of those nutcases who slather biodegradable sunscreen on in the dead of the Canadian winter when there’s a snowstorm outside. Because, yes, right now I am very, very tan, but this was a long, unavoidable and unintentional process. I am very aware that this is contributing to premature skin ageing, but I am taking most precautions (and I say ‘most’ because, unlike Vietnamese women, I am not willing to wear long jeans, socks, gloves, a hoodie, face mask and hat when it’s 40 degrees Celsius outside) and this is one of the few evils I am temporarily ok to deal with for the sake of travelling. I avoid the sun in the middle of the day, wear a hat, slather on a high SPF (always natural!) sunscreen, yet here I am, returning from a few months in the sun, looking like an Oompa Loompa.
If you follow my Instagram, you might have seen that I attempted a zero waste challenge in May. I just about missed the boat at presenting you my impressions on time for Plastic Free July, but here I go anyway. Now before I go any further, there’s a reason why I used the word attempted: my plastic-free living month was admittedly less than perfect and there was a fair bit of infringement in the form of deep-set habits executed on autopilot.
I took a cooking class at The Thai Farm Cooking School in Chiang Mai, Northern Thailand. The main reasons why I picked this specific school over all the other ones is because they offered the opportunity to veganized everything on the menu and because their farm is fully organic. I had an amazing day, made all of the vegan Thai curry recipe, and met tons of other fun, food-loving travellers! I can’t recommend this day out enough if you happen to be in Chiang Mai.
You might have noticed that things have gotten a little weird over on Instagram recently. If you haven’t, well it is time you be in the known. Someone mentioned to me there were some sort of a celery juice movement happening unbeknownst to most normal people, one of the purported claims being that it could be beneficial to those with chronic urinary tract infections. UTIs are not really something I’ve talked about here, but they are a very annoying real part of my life. In the last few years, I’ve grown to be resistant to several types of antibiotics and spent hundreds of euros on natural remedies and potions of all sorts in the hope of curing this rather annoying condition. And I know A LOT of women relate to this. So if someone tells me that buying two euros worth of stalky things and drinking a big glass of it might help, whatever the benefits of celery juice may be, Imma juice, yo. Imma juice so bad it hurts. Imma juice like there’s no tomorrow.
If you come here regularly or follow me on my social media, you probably know that yoga takes a very big role in my life. Beyond the fancy headstands (and don’t be shy from trying them! check out those inversions for beginners) and strange contortions I sometimes photograph myself into, yoga established itself as a daily practice in my life when I started backpacking through South East Asia. Spending long hours in crammed public transport or walking with a heavy backpack for several kilometers ended up taking a toll on my shoulders, back and hips and I found that daily stretching and yoga was the best way to keep my body limber and pain-free. So today is all about yoga.
I read so many Turkish hammam horror stories online from other travel bloggers that my curiosity got sufficiently piqued: I just had to volunteer myself on the naked altar of the body scrub sacrifice for the greater good of this blog (I know, tough…) – a rather painful and awkward experience by many if not all accounts. Tales of buck-naked merciless scrubs in crowded rooms, with nude masseuses getting to second base with prude North Americans had me sort of worried as I stepped inside Kiliç Ali Paşa Hamamiin Istanbul, not really knowing if the tales were true. Thankfully, I quickly learned that the Turkish hammam experience can be a blissful, relaxing and absolutely beautiful one. Without further ado, here’s how I found myself naked as a jaybird with a bunch of other women from all over the world in the centre of Istanbul. Amongst many great things to do in Istanbul, visiting a hammam is something you should not miss.
From one vegan traveler to the next, I can’t stress this enough: you have to chill, man. There have been times in remote areas of Southeast Asia where all there was for me to eat on the menu were stir-fried vegetables and rice for several days in a row, and other times where the language barrier made it impossible to communicate my dietary needs. I’d hate to see food go to waste, so when this happens, I tend to suck it up and eat around the offender. Fortunately, it hasn’t happened often. But I can’t stress enough that a relaxed attitude will take you a long way. The best we can do is do our best. And take snacks with you, always.
I hit the gym most evenings after work before I became a full-time traveler. While this was a perfectly enjoyable way to spend a few hours by myself and unwind at the end of a long day (especially on cold winter nights where exercising outside in the dark had absolutely no appeal), it quickly became either impossible or too expensive once I started traveling to far flung destinations. It also made no sense to trap myself in an air conditioned room with all this warm and wonderful tropical nature around me to use as a playground. The answer came organically: yoga.