A community-oriented website wouldn’t be the same without a blog, right? So here’s my blog. Welcome! It’s not just me that writes here; Eating Intuitively is blessed to have contributing writers, which means more insight, knowledge, information, opinion, and perception for YOU!
“Life does not happen to us, it happens from us.” ―Michael Wickett
It’s all about the date.
…with me, myself and I, of course.
I’ll let you in on this little ritual.
With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season setting in, a self date is just necessary. I put aside a date with myself, usually on a Friday night or a weekend morning, to go through a “mini-self retreat” as I take a deep look at three major entities in my life: the body, the mind & the soul.
Even if this seems a little far fetched… hear me out and I’m certain you’ll get something out of this!
Set out a non-negotiable date with yourself. Pencil it… wait, actually PEN it into your agenda, phone calendar, etc. and do whatever necessary to make sure you stick to this time so you can avoid rescheduling this hot date in fear of it being forgotten!
Set yourself up with a nice glass of wine or hot tea and bring out your journal, open a fresh word doc, have your agenda handy and get at it!
This starts with taking a good look at how aligned you feel with your life’s purpose, your dharma as it’s called in Sanskrit. Write down what goals you want to accomplish from now until the end of February. Three months in advance seems to be the sweet spot to set myself up with realistic goals that take into consideration the holiday time that I will need off to spend quality time with family.
Order your goals into priority of what week they could best get accomplished. I physically write them out in my agenda so I can see where I’m at as the weeks go by. I suggest reading my post for in depth goal crushing strategy to really tackle any goals that may be giving your grief!
This goal setting review is crucial to the process because by committing to your goals, your mind can be at ease as you are ready to actually check them off as you go! Knowing this is all written down and already visualized, your mind will no longer need to be mulling these thoughts over and over causing unnecessary anxiety. BODY
How does your body feel?
Is there anything your want add or subtract from your eating habits?
Where is your self-care at?
Take an honest moment to check in with your answers to these questions so you can address what needs to be changed. Make those appointments on the spot or add them into your goals for the upcoming week to make sure they happen.
This is non-negotiable time for yourself because for you to be doing your work in the world, you’re going to have to make sure your taking care of that beautiful body of yours!
At this point I usually go in to my gym calendar and book the next three months of yoga classes, strength building and cardio times. This way, those classes are booked, I’ve add them to my agenda, and it’s one reason more that I will be get my butt to those classes, during the inner battle of bed vs. workout!
I like to choose one thing in my eating habits to focus for a month so I can make sure it becomes well, a habit! I try to keep it simple and straight forward so it’s easy to remember on a daily basis!
My personal eating habit change for the month of December is getting more exotic fruits into my diet. Harder to find and a little on the pricy side, but I’m aiming to keep me aware of the how much fruit I am or am not consuming daily!
It’s all about non-judgemental awareness! SOUL
At the end of this process of writing goals, reflecting on the hard questions and knowing where you want to see yourself in two-three months from now, you deserve to give yourself a a few silent moments of gratitude for the work you’ve just done. This also is a time to hold space for any fears, insecurities, doubts as well as excitements, clarities and sensations of reliefs that has arose from this process.
This is where you take time, perhaps in a meditative form, to just sit and thank yourself for honouring your body mind and soul up to this point and for your ability to continuously create your healthy and happy lifestyle.
By making this date with yourself your opening opportunities of self-growth and you’ll gain more from the holidays knowing your on the track to getting what you need accomplished and keeping yourself healthy during it all!
I’d love to know how you set yourself up for a healthy & sustaining lifestyle during the holiday season! Leave a comment below!
https://firstname.lastname@example.org://email@example.com 17:06:472016-12-04 20:20:39It’s a Date! The non-negotiable for a healthy holiday season
Its Britt here. I am the creator of Eating Intuitively and have been passionate about well being since an early age. There was health imbalances and always a question lingering around me ‘why?’. This word, why, is a powerful word I see being used everyday by many people to seek for more. We ask why to learn, grow, and evolve. We, as a collect, are waking up to journeying through our own inwardness. A seed was planted within us to ask why. To wonder and explore the different areas of life and well being. This seed has gifted us the ability to explore more than what is told on media. So why work with a nutritionist? What is the purpose? What do we do? How does it look?
Lets look at food first. How many times are we programmed to think we need to eat? some would say 3, some would say 5, and I say when you are physically hungry. Mother Earth has provided an abundance of edibles to nourish us. These edibles come in all forms: plants (vegetables and fruit), nuts/seeds, legumes, grains, herbs, and other medicinal options.
Why do we eat?
We eat and need to eat food (nutrients within) that we can not intrinsically make.
We eat for pure connection with mother earth and our surroundings.
We eat gathered around a table for love and togetherness.
We eat, to receive the nutrients that are needed for our bodies to thrive.
On the contrary if we all ate the edibles Mother Earth provided, nourish the rhymes of our subtle bodies, and followed what spoke to our heart; would we even health care practitioners? No. I truly believe we all have the capability within ourselves to know exactly what is imbalanced and/or what needs more attention.
This is where I am come. See me as the navigator that is leading you finding the root cause of whatever imbalance you may be experiencing. I work with you directly on an individual level to unweave all of the confusion and or unconscious patterns. I am not an advocate of any particular eating regime except eating WHOLEFOODS as abundant on your plate as possible.
We start with food but we really go a lot deeper than that. There is a lot to be said about what we put in our mouth but without care to all other areas of our being we won’t reach our truest balance. Working with a nutritionist, especially a holistic one, we balance all areas of our life: physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. Because life is so much sweeter when we take more time out of daily schedules to give ourselves a lot more self love
But what does this all look like… There are many ways we can work together. I have worked with people through Skype, FaceTime, in person, and email. The recommend meal plans all change depending on what we are working on together. This can come in the form of a day to day plan or a weekly overall plan. All of my programs that I offer you receive special client prices for workshops, events, cooking classes, and other products. This is a little gift for you to take advantage of more knowledge on your own journey and learn various topics and make everyday the tastiest day every.
If you are feeling pulled to work with a nutritionist, lets talk! I offer a free 15min FREE introduction call.
I will be posting upcoming events, workshops, and classes for 2017 on the event page.
https://firstname.lastname@example.org://email@example.com 22:09:012016-11-13 22:19:46Why work with a Nutritionist? .... A Holistic Nutritionist.
It’s been one year since we ended our relationship. I shouldn’t have ghosted you, and I definitely should not have moved out in the wee hours of the morning, but I didn’t know any other way to end things. I was getting resentful near the end, I said some things I didn’t mean. I was feeling smothered, and bored and I couldn’t handle one more conversation about THE GODDAMN ROUGHRIDERS.
I know every three months I came crawling back in a moment of weakness – but holidays are lonely, okay. AND you got to keep all of our friends in the break up. They say time heals all wounds and this year has allowed me to realize what we had. So in honour of our one year breakup anniversary I have compiled a list of things I love and miss about you.
You got my friends. All of them. But I don’t know how you managed to get my family on your side. Snapchat stories alone make me tear up more than a Nicholas Sparks movie marathon (including Dear John, and that one was garbage). I think it’s a little bit greedy, but I am coming to terms with it. I appreciate you taking care of them but if you ever need a break, just send them my way. Please. Even for the weekend. I promise I will take care of them. Just so I can have no mo’ FOMO.
2. Affordable rent.
Ooooohhh how I miss the days where buying avocados wasn’t a luxury. Truly, the best of times.
You were so generous with your abundance of parking spots and I should have appreciated your meter-less streets while I had them. And your non-permit parking is something I dream of. Much love.
In the words of Fergie, you really did want me to be workin’ on my fitness. I never had to google “how much can I sell my eggs for” in order to pay a drop in fee.
5.Reasonable commute time.
Getting from A to B took 20 minutes max, no matter where I was going. I never had to deal with the soul crushing feeling that follows “fastest route” including: 2 buses, a train, and a 15 minute walk.
I never had to say “my boyfriend is waiting in the car” and silently deal with the fact that no, he is not in the car, because I am single. Oh, so single. Not to mention the risk that my craigslist purchase (i.e. my bike) may in fact be a stolen item.
These are six things I took for granted and I have learned my lesson. I hope this gives us both a little closure. And as much as Taylor Swift usually captures my feelings perfectly, we might get back together. Just not right now.
…..Nope. Still don’t care. I tried. Love, Stevie.
https://eatingintuitively.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/10/Blog-7-Cover-Post.firstname.lastname@example.org://email@example.com 12:10:052016-10-19 12:10:05 A Love Letter to my Hometown
Saying “I’m never drinking again” is a staple in my life. So much so, I have considered making it my instagram bio. Which for me is pretty much the highest form of commitment I can have to anything. But as we all do, I continue to have one too many drinks and hate myself for it.
In theory, for my age I should still fall under the “drink as much as I want and wake up ready for a spin class” hangover category. Unfortunately, for me, this is not the case. I usually wake up the next morning feeling like I was hit by a truck. A tequila delivery truck. But as I accumulate the hangovers in my collection, I have come to appreciate these hangovers and the exceptional wisdom they provide me. So in the spirit of keeping your enemies close, here are 5 things hangovers teach us to appreciate.
Not Vomiting in Public.
At no other point in life, except while hungover, do you stop and think “wow, I sure am happy I’m not about to throw up in this extremely public place.” Like that time I was about to get on a bus from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem looking like that girl from The Ring, praying to some higher power to give me the strength to get through just 90 minutes without being sick on a bus full of mostly hasidic jewish men. I made it through and I am now a believer in something.
I am already addicted to sugar and the struggle of my everyday desire to eat donuts pales in comparison to hangover induced lack of self control. Suddenly I am a poster child for onset adulthood diabetes. Ice cream? Yupp. Cookies? Sure. Fries? Duh. Poutine? Obvi.
Unfortunately Sephora has yet to come up with a hangover grade concealer. Trying to appear like a healthy looking human is not an option when hungover. Looking in the mirror hungover vs. the next day is like catfishing yourself. So in some fucked up way, hangovers teach us a little lesson about self love because when we are out of that dark eye circle, grey complexion, sweatshirt wearing shit storm we appreciate ourselves a little bit more.
Alcohol is a phenomenal depressant. Truly a gold medalist in the olympics of pessimism and shitting on one’s self worth. In true hangover fashion my thought process usually starts with regret, moves into feeling worthless about my life and concludes with a grand finale of anxiety. So a giant thank you to hangovers for helping me appreciate a non-depressed mindset and average self esteem.
The Will to do anything
Spending all day in bed watching netflix is much more enjoyable when you aren’t in agony. Going to brunch is much more fun when you can actually eat. And going to work is less dreadful when you don’t want to just sit down in the shower and give up on the day.
To all my friends out there who claim they don’t get hungover, that’s just too bad because hangovers are really helping me on the path to enlightenment. LOL….just kidding. I’m really jealous of you.
It has been almost 10 months since my two bare-feet arrived back on Canadian soil. Let me just say, its been a lot. I came from a schedule that had me wandering around the planet enjoying the new smells, sights, and atmosphere as frequent as possible. To a place of childhood memories, struggles, accomplishments, and so much more.
There was many reasons why I was guided to come back here to my hometown asides from surprising my whole family on christmas day. I could list them all down but that would keep you here for days reading all my reasons. My body just knew within all these reasons; I came back to heal. But, I didn’t know exactly what I was about to experience.
Within a few weeks, my body surrendered. I was covered head-to-toe in the biggest welts/rashes, my joints aches, sleepless nights, and my whole system completely in havoc. Shortly after I was about to embark on a new healing journey. One deeper than ever before. As time moved forward and I was doing everything possible to heal and feel alive again I knew staying in Saskatchewan was about to become a lot more interesting. My physical healing from parasites really was a journey to heal the areas of my younger self I had left years ago.
A few friends from the west coast and I would refer of any darkness as a “storm” when we lived together. This was a way we communicated with each other we were having a rough day, moving through a past trauma, etc…. Sometimes it creeps up and you can prepare other times it comes out of no where. Within these storms you become aware of the chaos that needs to be addressed; while a rainbow in the distance always lingers. The bright cheerful colours as a reminder that this storm will dissipate away le
aving you FULLER and more RADIANT than before. They come and go live the tides of the sea shaping you into the person you are today.
I have to admit there has been times this year where I felt like I was going to crack and never be able piece myself back together. But I kept dreaming and mediating towards the rainbow; fully surrendering to what was going through me. I have put together a few tools that I have used to help guide me through the ‘storms’ this past year.
Be gentle with yourself- By limiting all of the yang activities we can really nurture our yin side. This is also refereed to as you feminine side. Slow down your life completely and start enjoying the slower moments. I took extra time away from day to day tasks and slowed down. Maybe for you this is spending more time cuddling with your kids, taking a mid-day nap, or walking through nature. My daily habit became a bath filled with epsom salts, clear and rose quartz, tranquility oil from (Saje Natural Wellness). Connection to the water element was what I was pulled too. Being gentle with yourself also includes what is happening on the inside; being gentle and kind with self-talk/thoughts.
Allow yourself to fully be present in the storm- Fully feel whats happening inside and around you. We get to experience every sort of emotion possible and it can be a pretty cool experience if supported. At this point yang activity may be important. The last thing a person wants to feel is the build up of a certain emotion/sense. You want to find a healthy and safe way to release this energy so it doesn’t turn into something bigger or resentment or twirl you down into something even deeper. This one took me a while to figure out what worked best and how to fully feel whatever came up; never suppressing. If I felt like screaming I would go to a field and scream. If I felt like crying I would let myself cry. If I left like I needed to run, I would run. Honour what comes up.
Laughter- Its medicine. When will doctors start to prescribe more laughter? Seriously, its uplifting and makes us take life not so seriously. Watch a funny video, tell jokes with a friend, go to a laughter mediation (yes it is a thing-click here). Life can present some pretty wild things and finding the lightness in every situations always takes the pressure off. We can take everything extremely personally when we are in a state of vulnerability. Give yourself some love and find the beauty in the situation.
The universe never hands you something your spirit can’t handle. You just have to trust the process.Really trust and encourage yourself take each ‘storm’ and really grow from it. We are meant to experience these little bumps (or big bumps) to grow our heart bigger. So we can fill it with more love, strength, curiosity, and creativity.
Laugh, be gentle, and feel the present. You got this. No matter how much pain, sadness, confusion or whatever may be happening in your life right now we got this. As a tribe we are in this together. The universe supports you and I do as well.
If you feel like connecting; send me a message. We can lean on each other friend.
Photo Cred: My iPhone camera (feet) and http://hiroshi-nakanishi.tumblr.com/post/127880874391/expression-venusia-lightning-at-sunset-dazzling for the lightning photo. Feature image: Dustin Veitch
https://firstname.lastname@example.org://email@example.com 23:07:522016-10-14 16:11:17Moving Through a Storm
After 7 days immersed in the culture deprived Ayia Napa, we made our way south to the city of Larnaca. For what this city lacked in beautiful beaches, it made up for in its ridiculously perfect mix of traditional Cypriot alleyways and modern hipster decor.
We only had 2 days in this city and I left feeling as though I had just been to a real life version of my ideal pinterest decor board. To my absolute joy I found a cafe called BakeIt and enjoyed probably the best cappuccino of the trip. But then again, after drinking nescafe for days on end, my taste buds may have just given the fuck up on me.
I spent the morning on the beach which was not as picturesque as those in Ayia Napa but give me a beach and I shall lay with a smile on my face. I spent the afternoon wandering the streets and delightfully found myself in an area that from western culture could only be described as hipster. With cafes and bars situated in the small alleyways with tables set up lining the sidewalks it was very much my scene. We made our way back there in the evening for some drinks. We decided on a place called Stories, which is now inspo for my apartment. Dark stained wood was accented with brightly painted shutters and neon velvet furniture. I stuck to beer because I’m a broke ass student, but my travel partner got a seriously delicious passion fruit cocktail.
We left the next morning and made our way to the archaeologically famous city of Pafos. And you guessed it, another beach town. Pafos itself is a little bit of a bore. To give you some context; according to Tripadvisor, the number one thing to do is visit the archeological park seconded by visiting Aphrodite’s brewery….I’m sure you can guess which one of those we did. We made it our mission to get to the brewery. And let me disclose that the Cypriot bus systems are not the easiest to figure out so inevitably we got off at the wrong bus stop. Fortunately the stop we got off at was basically in someone’s front yard. Looking like two confused tourists, the homeowners quickly came to our rescue. They spoke little English and us no greek but they understood where we were trying to get to. Instead of pointing us in the right direction like most Canadians would have done, they proceeded to start cleaning out their vehicle so they could drive us. Turns out we were not too far off, only about a kilometer away. The little mishap was so worth it. If for some reason I end up on death row, this meal would be my last request. The beer was not so much our style (mostly darker, heavier beers) but the pizza was something from my dreams. We both ordered the fig and goat cheese pizza with capers, red onion, arugula and a balsamic reduction that I would take shots of. I will be comparing all future boyfriends to the happiness this pizza brought me, and I will probably fly 11,000 km to eat it one more time in my lifetime.
Cyprus is a beautiful country with warm, kind hearted individuals and amazing scenery.
Pafos restored my faith in humanity and the kindness we were shown in this city was exceptionally heartwarming. I left Pafos slightly less of a cynical asshole than when I got there and that’s a win in my book.
I recently shared a delicious raw Taco Night with a few dear friends here in Saskatchewan. We gathered in the kitchen all taking a taco station and ended up creating a beautiful spread to share over a long table filled with candles and wine glasses of kombucha. We bless our food out loud (I am very used to quietly blessing my food incognito, I may write a post about this) and then enjoy the nutrients Mother Nature have gifted us through fruits and vegetables. After sharing our meal we clean up and loose ourselves in conversation about various topics. This night was different though…We journeyed back, sharing, the layers of each of ourselves.
During this dinner… we sat around and looked at our past together through pictures, conversation, and videos. With no judgement but pure curiosity of our transcending being. Each layer of ourselves moving into the next shaping who we are today. I couldn’t help but think how incredibly vast we are as humans. Its freaking beautiful that we are able to choose to expand ourselves everyday. Fall deeply in love with an interest and than move upward to the next. The only commonality is the curiosity of the divine self.
We grow up with a distinct personality as a kid, our true essence. The only aspect that changes is how we are brought up and the external influences (society, media, etc…). This, to me, is the most fascinating part about kids. They express their emotions, desires, interests, and say it how it is. There is no sugar coating with these gems. Then growth happens with the external part of the world and we start to experience. We learn and try new topics that interest us; maybe from a past life, for a day, or maybe for a lifetime. As we experience we learn about ourselves. We experience more and subconsciously we start to journey through all of the layers of ourselves. From a perspective view we could look differently, talk differently, and act differently; during this time of our lives. Within these chapters of ourselves we still attain the true essence of ourselves; its just coming through in different ways.
I used to be ashamed of all of my mini lives. I used to keep them hidden from new people I met. I am not like that anymore because I vowed to myself to love wholeheartedly. Giving compassion to my past, present, and future. I love the journey I have been though. I may not be so proud of certain moments but I forgive myself and have learnt. Like the quote: The first time is a mistake the second time is a choice. Life can give you twists and turns to see how much you are aligned with your core. No matter what mini life I am journeying through I vow to move through these journeys aligned with love and curiosity.
We move upward to peel back the layers that no longer serve this life to seek more purity of spirit. We explore the depths of our being because we are curious. We fall more deeply and passionately in love with ourselves as we peel back these layers. We learn new modalities to expand our own consciousness. We transcend into the next self that is closer to our child self. The curious one with a mind full of creativity and love.
Be curious and strive to be the best version of yourself each and everyday. Yes there are hiccups and phases in our life. But learn from them and let them dissipate back into the earth. Let thyself learn and explore to clear the path to the divine child essence.
Be authentic and love every inch of you; because you are DAMN beautiful and authencity is magnetic.
Cheers to one of the many photos that was shared of a mini life (full Facebook timeline was shared haha): the summer dancing cheetah red solo cup version…
Well… It comes from a fruit. This fruiting tree which is wildly popular around the globe produces a beautiful fruit that is made into cacao or cocoa. We will go into the detail of the difference later on. Once picked, dried, and fermented there are two components of the fruit we eat: cacao powder and cacao butter. Both extremely nourishing yet super delicious when made into what we love: chocolate.
Cacao is the rawest state that hasn’t been heated or treated with anything. You may remember reaching into your grannies cupboard for the cocoa to make a hot cup of hot chocolate in the colder months. Cocoa comes from the same plant although it has been treated. This denatures all of the healing and healthy benefits of the plant. That is why I recommend purchasing your ‘’chocolate’’ in its purest form: cacao. Listed below are a few health raw cacao gifts to us.
Benefits of cacao, but not limited too:
1. super source of antioxidants. Nearly 4 times the antioxidants than the store bought chocolate brands
2. contains a good dose of magnesium (yes ladies this is wonderful to ease menstrual cramping)
3. lots of fibre to ensure our bowels are working at their optimal function
4. trace minerals to support our bodies daily functions
5. aphrodisiac properties
6. essential fatty acids to support brain and hormonal function
7. raises your serotonin levels giving you a sense of relaxation, happiness, and calmness
While all of these benefits are fantastic the truest gift about cacao is the heart opening ability is holds. Two people recently came into my life to share the extensive benefits of this divine fruit. They have gifted me with so much joy, inspiration, and knowledge of this fruit and the subtleties this fruit can provide. We recently hosted an Uncooking Class at Glow Juicery that was name: Chocolate is the topic.
Our night started with a mini Cacao Ceremony lead by Kyle to open our creative minds and centre our hearts. After the ceremony Jillian and I constructed a Double Chocolate Bliss Cake (recipe below) and shared the nutritional benefits and how simple it is to make nutrient dense cake that doesn’t give you a sugar hangover the following day. When I was leaving the night my heart was beaming (and still is) with so much love for these two people that came into my life and everyone that joined us that evening. We had an incredible turn out and will be hosting more chocolate infused nights very soon. You will have to keep checking our Events page and on Eating Intuitively’s social media for dates.
Double Chocolate Bliss Cake
Creators: Brittany Reid, Jillian Jordan, and Kyle Jordan
Makes 24 slices
A sweet heart centered raw cake that nourishes the soul with silky mouse chocolate ‘cheese’cake filling and a graham style crust that is infused with ceremonial cacao.
– Food Processor
– Mixing bowl
– Measuring cups and spoon
– Spring form pan (12 inch)
– Parchment paper
– 28 medjool dates
– 1 cup coconut shreds (unsweetened)
– 1 cup almond Meal
– 2 tsp vanilla bean powder
– good size pinch of sea salt
– 2 tbsp. coconut oil (melted)
– 1/2 cup ceremonial cacao powder
– 1/2 cup agave nectar or maple
– 1/2 cup coconut oil
– 3/4 cup lemon juice (freshly pressed)
– 3 tbsp. cacao butter (melted)
– 2 tbsp. coconut butter (softened)
– 2 cups almond mylk (room temperature)
– 4 cups raw cashews (soaked for 2 hours and rinsed)
– 1/2 cup cacao powder
– 1/2 cup ceremonial cacao powder
– 2 tsp. mega mushroom blend (New Earth Organic)
– 1 tsp. maca powder
– good size pinch of salt
– 1 tbsp. vanilla bean
Any ingredients you feel drawn to for decoration
1. Start soaking your cashews (2 hours) and review items that need to be melted or made into a powder (ceremonial cacao). Line your pan with parchment paper.
2. In food processor, combine all ingredients and blend into a fine consistency. Once the mixture is blended finely and is sticky remove from the processor and press into a cake pan. *** you will still want it to have some texture.
3. Rinse the cashews and start adding all liquid ingredients first then the dry ingredients into the blender. Tip: start by adding the liquid first and then the powders/solids.
4. Once you have added all ingredients, blend on a high speed to create a creamy consistency. You may need to use a tamper to help blend as it is very thick. If you don’t have a tamper simply stop the blender and use a spatula, scraping down the sides.
5. Pour the mixture from the blender into the cake pan over the crust.
6. Set in the freezer overnight to solidify.
7. Decorate with any ingredient that is in your pantry that you are drawn too. We have added ceremonial cacao shavings, coconut shreds, and cacao nibs.
Lots of sweet chocolatey love being sent your way.
If you try out this recipe please tag @eatingintuitively in your photos and let us know what you think in the comments below.
Please check out: www.cacaosoundmovement.com and www.facebook.com/cacaosoundmovement to learn more about the celebration of the nourisher, Cacao.
Photo Cred: Jillian and Brittany
https://firstname.lastname@example.org://email@example.com 17:26:422016-12-07 19:11:19Chocolate is a Fruit.
Israel wasn’t on my travel bucket list. In fact, I knew as much about it as I know about how taxes work….literally nothing. But my best friend was there and watching Broad City, swiping on tinder, and doing homework is no fun alone. I booked myself a plane ticket and off I went. After 17 hours of flights, there she was, in true BFF fashion, waiting for me at the arrivals gate at 3:00am with a sign that said “BOO! Dis Good, Dis Real Good”
My first couple of nights were spent in Tel Aviv. I really immersed myself in the culture…. a.k. a. stayed out until 5:00am for multiple nights in a row. For me this is a fucking miracle as I am perfectly happy being in bed by 9pm, but I was just doing as the locals do. The nightlife in Tel Aviv is a more chill version of the sloppy binge drinking culture over here in Canada, which was to my delight because I suffer from hangovers from hell. For some reason,my body refuses to acknowledge i have ever had a taste of alcohol.
My second favorite thing about the nightlife scene was the Israeli guys. They seem to be almost too polite/shy to approach you which for some might be frustrating but for me it was a refreshing experience not having to explain to some drunk bro that “it’s a girls night” or some bullshit like that to get him to leave us alone.
While in Tel Aviv and hungover AF, I attended my first Shabbat. Shabbat is a weekly day of rest in jewish culture. It begins Friday at sundown and goes until Saturday at sundown. This is a time where friends and family get together and have dinner and drinks and the following day is spent resting. Public transportation does not run, and most businesses are closed which can get a little interesting when you are not jewish so you forget and then run out of food and are forced to go out for insanely expensive dinners. I saw my credit card start tearing up at one point I swear.
My first shabbat happened to fall on my birthday and we went to a house with about fifteen other young people, each of us bringing a dish to share. There is a brief prayer before dinner but other than that, it does not feel as though it is a religion based get together which is great because religion is something i’m not super into. Everyone was so incredibly friendly and they even put together a little birthday cake with some candles for me. So as 15 strangers sang me happy birthday, I sat there like a fucking weirdo but being incredibly thankful for their warm welcome nonetheless.
The rest of the time was spent in Jerusalem. If you are wanting any insight, opinions, or a history lesson on the politics surrounding this city…too bad, this isn’t NPR. I had a weird fear of jerusalem after hearing a story of my friend being kicked in the market by a hasidic jewish man for wearing shorts. Yes, you read that right….he kicked her. But fear was quickly put to rest or at least replaced by my fierce love for falafel. I would love to sit here and tell you that I ate it a couple of times a week and at least pretend like I had some form of self control but that my friends, would be a dirty lie. I ate falafel almost every damn day. Should I have done it? No. Do I regret it? No. Do I wish I ate more of it? Yeah, I do. Sue me.
I did get some actual culture in by going to see the western wall, the tomb of jesus and the Dome of the Rock Mosque. Aside from the beauty of the mosque none of these places meant much to me as I am not religious so I really just left confused as to why people were rubbing their souvenirs in plastic bags all over the Jesus’s tomb….it all seemed very odd to me.
The “Shuk” is the local market in Jerusalem. It is one of the coolest places I have ever been. Fresh produce, spices, tahini, baked goods, fish, and cheese are sold amongst the small corridors in the Shuk. There are coffee shops placed amongst the vendors where you can sit and sip a cappuccino while watching the locals shop for the day or just watch several groups of jewish teenage Birthright tour groups snapchat their little fingers off.
But the real magic of the Shuk happens at night. When the produce vendors shut their stands down, several bars and restaurants open up in the same areas. Whether you want traditional israeli food, lebanese, italian pasta, craft beer, or hookah; the shuk at night has got you covered. Spending time at the Shuk, listening to live music, drinking craft beer, and sitting amongst the dope ass street art made me feel much cooler than I actually am so I tried to spend as much time as I possibly could there. I hoped some of the Israeli we-are-so-hipster-we-are anti-hipster coolness would just wear off on me but it didn’t, I came back as basic as I ever was.
The Shuk is my perfect nightlife situation because it’s super chill…way more chill than Tel Aviv. Hanging out for one beer and being in bed by 11pm is acceptable (JUST THE WAY I LIKE IT!). We did take a wander down to the actual club scene one night. My friend had turned in her last essay of the semester at midnight and was dealing with a one day old break up wound and drama like that deserves whatever the fuck she wanted. I’m sure she could give you a better review of the club scene because honestly whether it’s Saskatchewan, Vancouver or Israel, a club is a club and I hate them all.
Aside from the falafel and craft beer one of the coolest things I was able to do was visit the dead sea. The dead sea, which is actually a lake, is a salt lake located 400 metres below sea level (it is the lowest point on earth.) And that water is no joke. Make sure you are a stable floater because if you get that water in your eyes, you are going to want to die because it stings like a bitch. But once I rinsed my burning eyeballs out, I got my zen on like never before. I have never been in a float chamber, because I’m broke as shitttttt, but I would imagine its just like that but in nature and beautiful. And like the canadian tourists we were, we covered ourselves in that dead sea mud because it is the closest I will ever be to feeling like a Real Housewife at a spa and I wasn’t about to pass that up.
Israel is confusing, exciting, relaxed, hipster, stressful, beautiful, and interesting. It is 100% worth the trip once in your lifetime. Also, everyone is good looking so that should be of some motivation…and did I mention the Falafel?
Shalom My Friends, Shalom.
*Apologies for the lack of photos from Tel Aviv…as mentioned above I was too drunk/hungover the whole time to take any.
Written by: Stevie J.
https://eatingintuitively.ca/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Blog-5-Cover-Image.firstname.lastname@example.org://email@example.com 22:31:192016-08-04 22:33:02Israel…It Got Real
Sometimes life throws lemons at you and you have to listen to lemonade on repeat and go on a post break up getaway with your bff. This is how we found ourselves in Ayia Napa, a club fueled, european tourist haven in Cyprus. Cyprus is a country in the mediterranean located between Turkey and Greece and Ayia Napa is the Cancun of Cypress. Several corny restaurants and clubs lined the streets (including a Senor Frogs) and we were constantly being asked to go on 5 hour party cruises that sounded like floating frat parties that you could not leave. A quick stroll down the bar strip at night allows for the viewing of several alcohol poisoning cases in the making. These were not the reasons for our visit to ayia Napa and after the second night we did try to get a refund on our airbnb as being blindly puking in the streets was not our style. In contrast to the painfully fratty vibe, the magical landscapes Cyprus has to offer will quickly brainwash you into staying. Normally I would want to punch myself in the face for using the term “magical” to describe anything but as soon as you take a trip to nearby Cape Greko National Park, magical is the only fitting adjective. There is a 4 km trail that runs along the coast of the national park taking you to sea caves, incredible views, and an adorable Greek style church. The party boats were constantly rolling in to try and fuck up our zen but after their drunk passengers saw the blurred crystal waters and became distracted by another rum and coke they quickly moved on. The Agioi Anargyroi sea cave which is located beneath an adorable white and blue church was one of our first stops. As soon as we walked inside the small inlet, we quickly stripped and dove inside the insane turquoise water. Being in a cave that opens up to the Mediterranean ocean was such a stunning sight that I literally thought a mermaid was going to appear; probably try to sell me fantasy boat party tickets but mystical nonetheless.
Konnos Bay beach is at the end of the trail which is breathtaking itself if you can look past the tourist infested sea of beach umbrellas and russian men in speedos.We stopped by for a quick swim and a rest before we made our way to the main sea caves. We got lost obviously but eventually made found our way to the caves, which were by far the highlight of the day. The sea caves are a massive bay of cliffs laid inland that look like a something out of a Greek fairy tale. The bay has developed after thousands of years of the waves eroding the cliffs There is a section of the caves where cliff jumping is popular and with a 40 ft drop I can tell you it’s fucking fun but terrifying. Once you have jumped (or climbed) down, there is a large portion of exposed rock you can just chill out on and watch the cliff jumpers from above or just swim around in the bay and watch the terrified cliff jumpers hesitate at the top.
Take it from me, Ayia Napa is a playground for twenty somethings. The scenery is worth it for a couple of days, but never book an Airbnb for a week because people don’t like giving refunds! Next stop is Larnaca! Where we will hopefully be able to find some authentic Greek food instead of a Flintstones themed restaurant.