Travel diary: Chicago

Last month i had the pleasure of going on an impromptu girls trips to Chicago. This was my first time in the Windy City but it definitely won't be my last. 

Since the trip was super last minute we didn't have an itinerary set up of what we wanted to do other than of course go to the Bean and do a SUP class we found through class pass. We ended up doing some touristy things but mostly just went with the flow and found ourselves walking around and eating a few too many tacos (which of course I forgot to take pictures of). 

Something that was really cool was going to the Museum of Contemporary Art. They had a Takashi Murakami: The Octopus Eats its Own Leg exhibit, which was so awesome to see. Also on Tuesdays in front of MCA is a farmers market. Do yourself a favor and go on Tuesday and stop by the salsa stand that sells AMAZING vegan tamales! A couple blocks away from MCA is Big Wig Tacos, which also has great food. I of course forgot to take pictures but if you want to know how good it is let me just tell you that we went three times during our five day trip (and yes we went twice one day haha). 

Haha I feel like I'm mostly suggesting food places.. oh well. The number one place you MUST go to if you go to Chicago is Kitchen 17, its all vegan and ridiculously delicious! We decided to order the cauliflower wings, which were so good. They were crunchy and had a nice kick to them. Then we ordered some loaded nachos. We had been to many taco spots prior and had been eying nachos, but of course none of them were dairy free. Then we ordered the best damn vegan pizza. I forgot the name of the pizza but it had roasted artichoke, onions, garlic, spinach, vegan mozzarella and marinara. Ever since I've had dreams about their deep dish pizza. Seriously just go to Chicago and get yourself some great food. I've been telling G that we should go on a weekend trip to Chicago just so that I can get some pizza. Hands down best vegan pizza I've had! 

Last but definitely one of my favorite parts of the trip was going to a nike air society event that dealt with personal wellness, meditation and manifesting your dreams. The girls from black girls in om were the guest speakers and they were so inspirational. They really made me think about everything in life in general. Lauren wrote me an affirmation that I have been taking to heart and reminding myself everyday. Deun drew me an illustration on the same notecard. I framed the notecard and have it sitting on my desk reminding me about this day and what should matter.

Date Night at Modern Love Brooklyn

Okay so I've been dying to check out Modern Love Brooklyn. I don't think you guys understand how bad I've been wanting to go.  I've been stalking their Instagram and subtly hinting that I've been wanting to go so I was so excited to check it out. And I have to say thy didn't disappoint. I can't wait to go back again and I'm definitely making this my go to restaurant for celebrating birthdays. (We all have that one restaurant we celebrate our birthdays right?) 

So start the night we ordered some starters that were special for that night in particular. The first thing we ordered was the Korean rice gnocchi. I’ve been in search for a vegan gnocchi and was so happy to see that they not only had it as a special but also have a different variation as an entrée. (definitely need to go back and try that or the mac and shews!) The second starter was the cauliflower wings, which I have to try to make myself because I need that in my life more often! G by the way who is not vegan what so ever liked the wings a lot! 

For the entrées we ordered the grilled Caesar salad and the hen of the woods piccata. Both dishes were great but that grilled Caesar gave me life! It was so damn good I’ve been showing people pictures of the dish and telling them they HAVE to go. Seriously life changing!!

Then it was time for dessert, we ordered the special of the night which was a lemon mousse pie and yea just do yourself a favor and go to Modern Love Brooklyn like now!  

Summer Reading!

It's that time of the year again school is out and I have requested lots of books from the library. I was thinking of giving myself a break from reading since I have been reading approximately two books a week for school but let's be real, there's so many books I want to read haha. So here are some of the books that I'm hoping to read this summer, some are YA since I took a YA Lit class this semester and my reading list just grew out of control haha

If you want to see what I've been reading and adding to my to read list, check out my Goodreads account.  I'd also love any reccomendations of books you've been loving! 

Strawberry Muffins

The other day when I went to the supermarket I saw that strawberries were on sale 3 quarts for $5, so I had to pick them up. I have been tossing them into salad until I started craving something sweet and thought why haven't I made muffins before?!

I'm not one to toot my own horn but guys these are so delicious! You have to try them!

  • 1 cup non diary milk (I used rice milk)
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 cups gluten free flour (I LOVE Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free 1-to-1 Baking Flour)
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 kosher salt
  • 1/2 brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract (or more if you want-- I like adding more personally)
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • handful of cut up strawberries 

Preheat oven to 350F. In a small bowl, combine non-dairy milk with lemon juice to allow it to curdle (acts as buttermilk). In another bowl mix flour, baking soda, and salt. In a bigger bowl mix sugar, melted coconut oil, vanilla extract and lemon zest. Once it is mixed well add in buttermilk mixture. In thirds add in dry mixture. Lastly fold in strawberries. Make sure you don't over mix! Spoon mixture into muffin tin -- I filled the muffin liners quite full because I wanted the muffins to grow big. Bake for about twenty-five minutes, and look every so often. Remove when they're golden brown and try your best to let them cool down before digging in,

A vegan dines at Nix

When I heard about Nix being a new vegetable inspired restaurant in the city, I knew I had to go check it out. Then I found out they received a Michelin star and thought oh god I need to go there now! I went a few months ago and only had some small dishes but they were all delicious! Other than being vegetable based (vegetarian)  they also have a vegan menu.

For starters we ordered hummus with zaatar as well as an avocado dip with mint and curry. The dips also came with tandoor bread as well as gluten free Indian crisp bread called papadum. My favorite hands down was the avocado dip.


Other than the dips we ordered two salads to share. They were both sooo good! I don't remember the name of the first one but I do know that the second one was ribbons of jicama with fresno chili & blood oranges.



This post is long overdue but I finally have most of the pictures. I bought two disposable cameras and keep forgetting to develop them. (Putting it on the top of my to do list right now!)

Iceland was on my bucket list for quite a while. I kept seeing pictures of Iceland popping up online and kept thinking "I NEED to go there!" When I saw that Icelandair was having a sale, I immediately jumped on board. We booked the trip for a total of six days and it was definitely enough time to get a lot done. 

We arrived in Iceland very early so we drove off to Blue Lagoon. Didn't really take pictures since my phone nor camera is water proof and of course I forgot the disposable waterproof camera in the car. (Yes I know I'm a mess!) The rest of the trip consisted of chasing waterfalls and becoming one with nature. The MVP of the trip was hands down my hiking boots! 

The trip was definitely one of a lifetime as it was filled with loads of magic. Being surrounded by nature was just amazing! My favorite parts happen to be when we'd come across beautiful horses and sheep. At Jokulsarlon Glacier Lagoon, we even came across a seal! 

Disclosure and a big thank you to my friends that went on the trip with me. They took awesome pictures and let me borrow some! 

Surviving the cold weather

It's funny to think that this time last year, it was warm enough that no one had to wear a jacket. Everyone was talking about how great the warm weather felt. This year is different, the cold weather is in full affect and I'm doing my best not to hide indoors. Here are some tips to survive the cold weather:

1. Chapstick // Don't forget to take care of your lips! Dry and cracked lips are seriously no fun. To hydrate my lips, I use Nuxe Rêve de Miel everyday before I go to bed and use Chapstick throughout the day. 

2. Hydrate // Don't forget to drink enough water. My throat has been feeling extra dry because of the cold weather so I've been doing my best to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate!

3. Moisturize // I have recently been waking up with my face feeling dry. I hate when my skin feels dry so I've been extra cautious about lathering up with moisturizer.  

4. Layer up // Sweaters are your best friends when it comes to the cold weather. Don't forget your gloves and hat.

5. Use a humidifier // The other night I felt like I was getting sick so I turned on my humidifier. I woke up feeling so much better. Humidifiers also help with cleansing the air, turning one on before going to sleep can be soothing especially if you add some essential oils to the water. 

A vegan dines at Le Botaniste

I've been walking past Le Botaniste for a while and finally decided to check it out. There's only a few places near the upper east side that I pop into to catch a quick and cheap bite. Le Botaniste has officially been added to that list.

We ordered the mezze, which includes a plate of vegetable sushis and home spreads. The spreads are green pea hummus, young coconut ceviche, seaweed tartare, red beet caviar and potato bacalao. They're served with gluten free crackers and slices of super seed bread. We also ordered the super seed avocado, which is hands down our favorite thing! The avocado is coated with seeds and topped with sauerkraut and this yellow dressing that tastes so good!!