Young, Wild & Free
Exploring the world before, after and during college can be one of the most insightful times in our life. It’s where we learn who we are, what we want out of life, what we don’t want. All of that is enough to think about without stressing over what to have with you when you’re discovering these life-changing revelations. Whether you’re trekking cross-country or just driving to the nearest mountain lodge, you’ll want to pack light. For wardrobe, pack light layers and neutral outfits that can be mixed and matched with ease. For travel snacks, opt for granola, protein sticks and other items that will give you lasting energy. Also, Google a map of local farmer’s markets in each city you hit to have access to fresh fruits and veg and don’t forget your journal to document your memories.
As a pair, you’ll need to learn the fine art of compromise. I got lucky and married someone who has a similar goal list when it comes to our travel desires, but not all couples will. Mix it up and keep it spontaneous. Take turns choosing the destination or excursions along the way, allowing yourself to be open to new experiences. When traveling with your honey, always have a tent and a picnic basket with an unopened bottle of wine in the car (caution if you’re traveling where it’s warm. I learned the hard way, that in heat, corks will burst.) It makes for a great impromptu romantic night of sleeping under the stars. Also, travel with comfortable blankets and pillows and map out a local drive-in theater for a little nostalgia. Battle of the Sexes card games are always fun to have when driving long hours, as are books on tape.
Mommy & Me
Pile in the littles and everything changes. The days of packing light in a fashionable mini-backpack are long behind you, though I hope you’re still scheduling time for the romantic picnics when the kids are with the grandparents, and visions of “Are We There Yet” chants hang in the air. Have no fear. With the right essentials, you needn’t expect anything but a fun road trip where both you and your kiddos can be entertained. First, make sure the snacks you pack are healthy and filling. Think about how you’d feel if you were given a heaping serving of sugar and empty calories and then strapped into a seat for five hours. I’d probably throw a tantrum too. Snacks that are balanced and nutritious, such as fibrous vegetables, berries and healthy crackers and cheese (if dairy is tolerated) are much better alternatives to sweets. For in car activities, pack a variety of books and games that are a mix of stimulating, educational and fun. Another way to expel more energy and to add adventure, purchase tickets to a museum, park or children’s center along the route that can break up the trip and give the kids something to explore.
No matter the age, the journey is half the fun. With a little planning and knowledge, the stress can be taken out, leaving much more room for adventure and memory making. You can also check out my post on how to have a budget-friendly staycation.
This past weekend I was in Los Angeles for a work event. Mr. Charming and I rented a darling home in Toluca Lake in a beautiful, peaceful neighborhood and explored many neighboring cities and beach towns on my time off.
I had one of the best Italian meals of my life, all gluten-free and vegan, and I had to share my top seven list of healthy eats in Studio City, CA where the crew and I spent a lot of our time while I was in town. Make sure to check out #1 to read about the best pasta in Hollywood.
1. Vitello's Italian Restaurant
About: After going through a drastic renovation to make it a modern piece of eye-candy in Studio City, Vitello's offers live entertainment (which was amazing) and delicious Italian options for gluten-free and non-GF foodies.
Favorite Selections: Hands down the gluten free Capellini. The freshest ingredients I've tasted on the West Coast. The gluten-free pasta was cooked to perfection, the olive oil was pure and clean, the tomatoes had a kick of spice, the large garlic cloves were divine and the basil was fresh and delicate. A 10+. My non-GF husband RAVED about the lasagna.
Location: 4349 Tujunga Ave, Studio City, CA 91604
Nosh & Nurture was born of this journey I am on to better the health of myself, my family and those around me. What started as a simple compilation of recipes has grown to a all-around lifestyle journal with ways to incorporate organic products into your home, pantry and beauty cabinet. I also include stories on pregnancy, new motherhood, travel, Proverbs 31 marriage, and spiritual health, as I am a Christian who couldn't do any of this without my Lord & Savior Jesus Christ. For more of my story you can click here.
All recipes are gluten-free and dairy-free with a lot of soy-free, grain-free, sugar-free options.