Carmel on-the-go

Consider Carmel-by-the-Sea as a hub of fresh food with laws meant to keep it a walkable city without the bustling stress in the bay area further
up north. It is and a central point to explore the natural beauty surrounding this one square-mile where tourists are loving the activity and support for healthful restoration on their getaways.


In Carmel-by-the-Sea the mode of transportation is walking. There are hills but you stay bi-pedal. There is even a LAW prohibiting footwear with anything over a 2″ heel. Honestly, taller footwear is not the best thing for our bodies so kudos to Carmel-by-the-Sea for pushing our fashion savvy and saving our backs. Hello Earth Footwear, Ahnu, or Dansko… do you already work with this area?


Our host for the area was Hofsas House. It is a longstanding, affordable lodging option in Carmel-by-the-Sea. The proprietor, Carrie, has a grandmother we all wish she had. Her grandmother started lodging with a few small rooms, bought more property, bought the land, had Carrie work under her as a pre-teen and has left a legacy that a fourth generation may take on in the future. IMG_4585

Carrie in her efforts owns and operates with 38-room, Bavarian-inspired tradition as well as serves with local politics for this carefully-curated area. Curation entails no food franchises, no neon signs, no street lights, no harming trees in construction, no street addresses, and no paid parking. All these factors lead to casual European elegance with the warmth of family hospitality. Talk to Carrie or her staff about what to do in this area as you are planning your stay.  L1140084

My favorite nuggets of the area are:

  1. The BEACH. A white sand beach on the Pacific coastline is rare. Even rarer is the ability to have a bonfire on a public beach. There are a few restrictions, but public bonfires ya’ll!L1140043
  2. Carmel Belle – A quick food and drink spot that exemplifies the businesses I choose to support with high-quality, simple food that encourages local sustainability practices. They hosted us for a meal and brought out the organic wine. The open-face mushroom sammich and lentil soup were very tasty! I went back for a turmeric elixir. I then went back for a filling smoothie (carrot and almond butter was not on my radar before). And a big bonus that no one made any issue of dealing with my re-usable container. IMG_4494IMG_4503L1140023 L1140030IMG_4498
  3. Yoga Center of Carmel – I only got a peak instead of a practice. I had planned to do a restorative mid-Monday practice but our itinerary conflicted. They seem inclusive to all bodies and experience, I got a great vibe.
  4. Caraciolli Cellars – There is a wine walk you can do that includes over a dozen cellars where you can get tasting flights. I started at this cellars and stopped. There was nothing I could do after their Brut Cuvée so I called it. I am glad I did, it turns out their winemaster also blends for Holman Ranch. Everyone seemed to enjoy their tastings but I knew this was it for me and I am kicking myself for not bringing some back on the plane to Denver.L1140005 L1140067
  5. Active outdoor tourism – Point Lobos hiking, bike the 17-mile ride with a rental from Monterey, hospitality partners to get a two-day pass to the Monterey Aquarium for the price of one, surf the constantly cool bay, tour the missions, explore Carmel River, and hug some big trees in Big Sur.
  6. The overall ease with access to fresh, local food. This is near America’s Salad Bowl, as Salinas is called. There is fresh produce everywhere. Artichoke production is also big near this area. L1140059

One note I will make about the area is that it is very dog-friendly. I am talking about dogs-in-some-wine-cellar-tasting-rooms friendly. Kid-friendly is a little different. The area is affordable and gorgeous. I do not personally think the main attractions in town are appropriate to have kids at all day. Stay in Carmel-on-the-Sea as your area hub for comfort and then radiate out to adventure with the little tykes.
L1140073 Stay tuned for my next post when I talk about Holman Ranch and what they have done to earn their SIP (Sustainability in Practice) Certification. They were the next stop on our #llnotablogconf trip.

#EarthMama On the Road

I am very, very lucky that my kids are really great when it comes to traveling.  They are great on planes, they are great on the road.  Just because we leave home is no reason to sacrifice high-quality personal products for any of us.  I love Earth Mama Angel Baby when I leave home with or without them because their products multitask as much as I do.

The whole family is accompanying me this long weekend as I am a course manager for about 50 miles of a relay race.  I have a big van of supplies to help my volunteers and runners as well as needing to keep our suite at elevation (8500′-9500′) stocked for my family.

Here is a pretty standard set of goods I am using to travel with the whole family.  When it is just me and I am flying it is usually the Angel Baby Oil (I use this as a facial moisturizer, body moisturizer, and a hair oil if I need some softness and control) and some of their lip balm.  The baby oil is available in 1 oz. size which is easy for TSA carryon convenience. For everyone on this trip it is Nipple Butter, Angel Oil, Body Wash, and Bottom Spray.   When I am in my van cruising the course I will have the Nipple Butter and Bottom Spray on hand for runners who get too much sun or encounter plants on the trails that they may have reactions too. These products multitask for me with beauty routines, my kids and family with their needs, and for endurance athletes who need an extra hand on the course.

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The Shampoo & Body Wash is so crucial on the road for the boys because of its distinctive scent.   As a standard the boys and I are used to using the Natural Orange Vanilla Scent.  Even though we are not at home this familiar scent helps to keep them in their usual rhythm of nighttime steps and as a cue for when to go to bed.

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I hope to add some images of athletes on the course getting a little EMAB TLC.  I use it with my endurance training so why not introduce it to others?  To get a feel of alternative uses of Earth Mama Angel Baby products please visit this summary.

FTC disclosure: This is a compensated campaign I am part of with monetary compensation and products provided.  However all opinions are my own. I am a longtime fan of Earth Mama Angel Baby so it may seem hard to find me criticizing their products.

Summer Fun with Blue Diamond

Almonds are simple for summer with the delights of being outside and on the go.  I thought the best way to show this would be with my trip to the East Coast over the weekend for Fitbloggin.  I packed up my tin of Blue Diamond Toasted Coconut  Almonds and headed out on an epic journey.

Blue Diamond at the airport

First I am glad I packed them in carry-on luggage because when I got to the airport the restaurants were closed and I did not grab dinner.  This was a good alternative to the snack machine dregs I tried to navigate.

Then during the four-hour road trip to Savannah from Atlanta my tummy clock went off again and these little powerhouses were right there.

Finally I had to take the day further with four hours of kayaking including battling the incoming tide from the Atlantic.  I needed fuel! The tin packed well in my wet bag.


The trip was not quite planes, trains, and automobiles but switch out the trains with the kayak and you are there.  This tin was versatile and compact along the way.

For those curious about the ingredients, for the most part they were wholesome with ingredients that I could identify.  I was sent a Toasted Coconut tin and a bag of Blueberry flavored almonds.  The Blueberry ones had blueberry juice and red cabbage juice but I opted to leave them home because the stevia left an aftertaste for me.  I liked the Toasted Coconut a lot with “caramel color” being the major question mark for me.  I generally like my almonds plain – so the flavoring was new for me.  I would consider getting the Toasted Coconut again as a treat while out on the road for sure.

FTC Disclosure – I was not compensated financially for this post.  I am a Tastemaker with Blue Diamond and was sent two regular-sized products to taste and mention in my social media channels.