Food Blog Forum Orlando: Disney Fun

I had the best time this past weekend at Food Blog Forum in Orlando, Florida in Walt Disney World. I was so fortunate to get to share a round table speaking with the amazingly talented, humble and genuine, Angie of Bakerella. We spoke on “Writing a Cookbook From Two Perspectives” to four different groups.

Food Blog Forum was founded by Jaden and Scott Hair of Steamy Kitchen and Todd Porter and Diane Cu of White on Rice Couple. This one day conference is always so inspiring (this was my 3rd event), and this is the most wonderful, sharing, open and welcoming group of speakers and food bloggers. I must give a shout out to the fantastic staff at Walt Disney World for their incredible hospitality and generosity as well as to Julie, from The Little Kitchen, and Dawn Viola for coordinating this event. One the big themes of the weekend which spoke to me is: “Dream big and share your dream with others” via the man himself, Walt Disney.

Of course, there was food to be had at a “Food Blog Conference.” We had the most incredible parties, including Friday night by the beach at the Grand Floridian, lunch by a multitude of top Disney’s chefs (see above), and a wonderful Irish dessert party while watching fireworks in Epcot on Saint Patrick’s Day.

I met so many new fabulous food bloggers, and I had the pleasure to connect with old friends as well. (See Kelly, from “Just a Taste”, and me at Epcot, above).

I also had the chance to check out some of the best Disney attractions. The Epcot “International Flower and Garden Festival” (above) was this month. It was unreal!

This shot (above) from Animal Kingdom is the mountain of Expedition Everest. Doesn’t this look like I could actually be at Mount Everest?

We went on the Kilimanjaro Safaris ride (above) in Animal Kingdom, and we saw so many rare, beautiful animals. I can’t believe how close this giraffe got to our jeep.

Downtown Disney is always a blast. You never know what you might find in Disney World. Did I mention that my kids came along as well? They haven’t been there in seven years, so it was quite a treat. My son, Zachary, was a little timid of her (above).

My daughter, Leigh, (above) told me she wanted a picture with Mickey and Minnie. Honestly I wasn’t sure that it would be possible, but if there is a will, there is a way.

We loved staying at the convenient, and very, fun Polynesian Resort. Their beach (above) was so pretty, and their water slide in the pool was a hit with the kids. It’s a perfect way to spend time outside of the parks for some down-time.

Three Berry Antioxidant Juice

My 3 kids absolutely love homemade juice, and I mean “love”. Lately I have been getting so many questions daily about a “juice cleanse”, and my thoughts on that… I like to tell people I believe everything in “moderation”. Regardless, this Triple Berry Antioxidant juice is antioxidant-packed and made with blueberries, raspberries and strawberries. It is a homemade juice that is great for hydration, boosting your metabolism, cancer prevention, your skin and more. This recipe makes a great morning pick-you-up or kid’s afternoon snack. I was trying to save some I made this afternoon, and my daughter finished it before I could turn around.

Broccolini with Pumpkin Seeds Recipe & Health Benefits

Broccolini is a cross between broccoli and kai-lan, a chinese broccoli. It is slightly sweeter than broccoli, and its stalks are thinner so it cooks quicker. I love it when I need to prepare a healthy, fast side dish. Broccolini has great health benefits such as having anti-inflammatory properties, cancer fighting benefits, high antioxidants and more (below). This recipe for Broccolini with Pumpkin Seeds is one of my new family favorites. My kids ate this with no complaints. This recipe is also gluten-free on the paleo diet, and is a super healthy side to add to your weeknight dinner table.

5 Health Benefits of Broccolini:

1. It has beta carotene which helps boost your immune system.

2. It has high levels of vitamin K and Calcium which is great for bone health.

3. It is high in fiber so it aids in digestion, curbs overeating and maintains blood sugar levels.

4. Broccolini is high in Vitamin A and C which help boost immune system, contribute to better vision and helps boost metabolism.

5. Broccolini is high in potassium which is good for the nervous system, promoting brain function and muscle growth.

For more recipes and great information and recipes on metabolism, health and wellness see my FoodLife Project. My first coaching class starts the week of March 26th.

Boosting Your Metabolism: Speaking Event Saturday

How can you boost your metabolism? I’ll be speaking this weekend at Bikram Yoga Birmingham on Saturday at 11:15 (immediately after the 9:30 class) on this important topic. I’ll be talking about the top foods, drinks, tips and types of workouts that will maximize your metabolism to its fullest potential. If you can’t attend, check out my “small group coaching series online” this month being held online for The FoodLife Project.

Fitness Friday: Lululemon Giveaway

Happy Fitness Friday. Since it’s my birthday week, I thought I would offer a fun giveaway for an awesome tank from lululemon athletica. We are so lucky to have a lululemon athletica store in Birmingham so check out their Facebook page. If you live in town, did you know that they offer yoga at their store every sunday night from 6 to 7 p.m? The class is taught by a different local yoga instructor each week. Fun, huh? If you’re in town, be sure to check it out! Back to my giveaway… To enter to win one of their latest tanks (it might not be these exact ones pictured, but it will be one of their latest tank tops), leave a comment telling me what type of yoga you would like to try or how yoga has impacted your life. Also do the following below for extra chances to win and leave me a comment letting me know you did. One lucky winner will be drawn on Tuesday, March 13th at 8 a.m CST. Good Luck!

1. Like Ingredients Inc on Facebook

2. Follow Alison Lewis on Twitter

3. Follow Alison lewis on Pinterest

4. Subscribe to Ingredients, Inc. via email

5. Like FoodLife Project on Facebook

6. Sign up for The FoodLife Project  first “small group series” for 10 chances to win.

 

Easy Trail Mix Recipe

It was great to have a Leap day last week for Leap year. It was like having an extra day (although I worked), but I was so excited to be a part of the “Delightful Discoveries for Leap Year Campaign” for Quaker. I had the chance to giveaway a $75 Visa gift card to a great blogger, Marnely Rodriguez, who won it from my blog a week ago. For my Leap Day discovery, I used my time to create a new Easy Trail Mix Recipe with the new Honey Nut Oatmeal Squares from Quaker. This is a wonderful Easy Trail Mix to eat for a great afternoon snack for the kids and adults. It also makes a great topping to stir in nonfat Greek yogurt, and it’s perfect to make to take on trips (I think I’ll be making some before spring break). My kids and neighbors went wild over it, and before I could get my hands on it, it was all gone.