Month: February 2014

local food, a love story

When was the last time you explored your town like a tourist? Have you discovered any new good eats or drinks? Or do you prefer to frequent old favorites? I’m a little of both. Evan and I have several places we cycle through monthly, but we feel strongly about supporting new local folks with upcoming businesses, so we branch out every now and then to find a new one to throw into the mix. However, one of our absolute favorite places in Rincon is a small local place run by Puerto Ricans that only recently starting catering to gringos and tourists. It’s literally in the front of the owner’s home, with covered seating and bar and some of the best fresh made food in town. La Cambija always has fresh fish, and offers some typical cuisine like empanadillas and pinchos. Evan loves their artisan salad (not found on the menu) and I’m amped because they offer lionfish, the most sustainable fish in the Caribbean. La Cambija is named because its location is where the island-wide …

how to: be a savvy shopper

How often do you shop online? Daily? Monthly? Do you ever take a few extra minutes to search for the best deal on whatever it is your purchasing? If you haven’t done so ever before, then you’ll learn something new from me today! I love to online shop, especially since moving to an island where certain items I enjoy are limited. For instance, I buy my all natural hair and skin products, hemp protein and other food items from Drugstore.com and get free shipping. Rather than hunt down these items from several stores within a 50 mile radius, paying premium prices for the imports to the island, I search for them online and save with deals and coupons. Yes, coupons. Not clip-n-save types, but online codes. Then, on top of that, I use a sneaky browser tool (okay, it’s not sneaky, but it does seem that way) called Invisible Hand, which is constantly scoping out the lowest price for the item you’re searching depending on what website you’re currently on (LOVE this tool). Here are …

culinary: toast & egg with avocado

My new favorite brunch and snack! This little quick bite is perfect fuel after a run or before a busy day. I could literally eat this for breakfast daily. It’s essentially a toad-n-the-hole (or bird in the basket, depending on what your grandmother taught you it was called) which is a piece of bread holding an egg in the center (however you like the eggs cooked!). What you Need: 1 slice of  rye toast with hole cut in the center 1 medium to large egg, scrambled 2-3 slice of fresh avocado 1-2 spoonfuls of your favorite salsa Butter the toast and place in a pan to brown. Add the scrambled egg to the center of the toast, slowly to keep it from creeping out around the bottom of the toast. Let cook until satisfied. Plate it and add your avo and salsa, enjoy!

travel: Afar’s Puerto Rico page

Last year, I was asked by the Afar Media team to curate a list of all the exciting things to do and see in Puerto Rico, along with the essentials to know before traveling here. I was delighted to take part in this initiative, and I’m overjoyed to see how well it turned out! Now, it’s your turn to go explore this destination page and tell me what you think! It’s very interactive: you can search for things to do by the categories I’ve created, featuring several highlights of activities around the island. There are food, drink, hotel and outdoor recreation lists, plus several specific to Puerto Rico, like “Best Views” for all you photographers. The “Know Before You Go” feature lists all the details about traveling on the island that will make planning your trip much easier. If you want to identify activities by their location on the island, you can use the interactive map shown above. And if you just want to view all the guides I’ve created, you can view that here. …

favorites: blemish fighting products

I have constantly battled blemish skin from an early age. Living in Texas, my skin was subjected to dry winters and hot summers. It’s partially environment, but a lot of genetics too. But since moving to Puerto Rico, where the humid keeps my face moist, but not excessively oily, I’ve found several products that keep my skin nourished and glowing. The best part? The majority – or all – of the ingredients are natural. Desert Essence Blemish Touch Stick | this product is 100% all natural. Harnessing the antimicrobial properties of tea tree oil, this stick does wonders to reduce redness and blemishes. I love this product so much, that I’ve completely stopped using my prescription medication for acne (whenever spots arise), in exchange for this. The trade off? This stick takes a couple days to produce results, whereas my medication is effective after one day. I’d rather deal with a zit for a bit longer if it means keeping chemicals off my face. Origins: A Perfect World Age Defense Skin Guardian | I have …

photography: iphone macro + wide angle lens kit

Have you ever wondered how those folks you follow on Instagram get the super macro shots with just their camera phones? Wonder no longer, because I’ve got the answer for you – and it’s simple and inexpensive to duplicate: an attachable macro lens kit. You can buy these all over the internet and they range in price, from expensive (Olloclip $70) to middle-of-the-road (Photojojo $30) to inexpensive (Ink361 $18). I tried out the inexpensive version, which shipped from Hong Kong and arrived safely to me in Puerto Rico (free shipping). I was disappointed at first, because the item seemed cheaply made, but I quickly figured out how to use it properly and was shocked at the high quality macro shots I could produce! Here’s a sampling of my macro tour around the backyard: So if you just want to try this out, I would recommend Ink361’s version. If you’re ready to commit to something higher quality, then try the other two options instead. I also tried the wide angle lens feature, but wasn’t as impressed. …

fitness: aerial yoga

I told you last Friday that Evan and I would be attending an aerial yoga session at our local studio for Valentine’s Day. This was something neither of us had ever tried before, so we had no idea what to expect. And… It was awesome. SO awesome! Soooooo awesome! I loved every minute of it, so much that when the class was finished, I didn’t even want to stop! I was pretty excited that Evan would be doing this with me, because it’s something we’ve never done as a couple. We occasionally work out together, but we mostly do our exercising and fitness separately because our styles don’t align – for instance, I prefer running and yoga over weight training and surfing. But this was a fun experience for both of us – we had to trust each other in certain flips, assist each other with different poses and some poses we did together in the same aerial hammock. We agreed that we got a deeper stretch in common yoga poses when using the aerial …

three favorite fitness sites

I’ve been trying to expand my fitness routine to include weights and strength training rather than just yoga and running. Now, I’m perfectly content with my workouts – I do a version of cross fit + yoga on Mondays, running or flow yoga Tuesday through Thursday, and core power yoga on Friday. Today – for Valentine’s Day- Evan and I engage in our first ever aerial yoga session (pictures and review to come next week!). Evan does not practice yoga, but exercises regularly and his stretching involves many common yoga poses. So we’re thinking this will be a great way to try something new, sweat a little, and grow closer together as a couple. I use blogs, websites and books to find new workouts, healthy living and recipes, inspiration and good deals on fitness and health items. I first heard about aerial yoga from my instructor here in Rincon, who runs our only aerial yoga studio. That prompted me to read more about it online, all the while discovering several valuable sites for fitness and …

paper love: artifact uprising

Print your Instagrams and photos on thick lush paper with matte style. I am in love with the quality and options from Artifact Uprising. If you haven’t checked them out yet, you’re missing out on some awesome, serious photo printing. As soon as Evan and I have our engagement photos taken, I’ll be printing our “guest book” with all the images of our sweet moment in December and the fun times in between now and April 2015. You won’t be disappointed with their quality or production time! Note* this is my own opinion, not a paid advertisement.