Where to stay in Cancun Mexico so You Don't Feel Like  a Tourist

Cancun Hotels Where You Won’t Feel Like a Tourist

Cancun is the destination of choice for many Americans visiting Mexico. The city caters so much to tourists that there is an aptly named “Tourist Zone” chock full of hotels and safe options for visitors. But what if the idea of being stuck in this din of faux Mexico sounds more stomach-churning than delightful? It is possible to find great places to stay that are not in the tourist zone. You’ll have a more authentic experience and, in all likelihood, pay much less as well. Isla Mujeres isn’t located in Cancun proper, but is only a few kilometers away and…


7 Tips for Buying a Rug in Marrakech

I have a small obsession with Moroccan rugs. By small what I really mean is that I have a big problem. I just can’t resist them! Aside from basic house goods I haven’t bought many decorative items for our Marrakech house- except for these. Just the other day we were at a rural market and as soon as my mother in law saw me eyeing rugs she grabbed my arm and pulled me away. Yes, I am simply that in love with them!


Giving and Accepting Gifts and Compliments in Morocco

Today’s post is at the request of a reader who will be traveling to Morocco soon. The topic may seem straight forward to someone living in North America or Europe. If someone has a nice shirt you might say, “wow I really like your shirt!” to which they’ll typically respond, “thank you!” or some variation of this conversation. Certainly the frequency and context of  making and accepting compliments varies depending on country however it most often is simply an exchange of pleasantries. Not so in Morocco.


Top Paleo Cookbooks to Enhance Your Collection

Several years ago my sister said she was “going paleo.” I was baffled. What in the world did that even mean? She went on to explain (in simple terms I could understand) that you ate foods that would have been available to our hunter/gatherer ancestors. This meant to butter, no gluten, no processed foods, etc etc. It’s often called the caveman diet for this reason. Honestly, I thought it was totally hogwash. But she won me over a little bit when she made some seriously good food. I’m certainly not following this diet 100% but I do notice living in…

24 Hours in Miami

24 Hours in Miami

When we set sail for our Caribbean cruise last year, we departed from Miami. I had never been there but already knew the beach and party scene wasn’t for us. Whenever I cruise, I always arrive the day before and leave the day after the ship departs. With airline delays, weather, and any number of other things that can go wrong, the last thing I want to do is miss the boat. I booked a hotel that had cruise port transfers to make life easier, and the Holiday Inn Miami – International Airport was a great fit. Before we transferred to the…

Tea in London

Best Hotels in London for Afternoon Tea

One of the items on my list of “things to do and experience” is a full on English afternoon tea. “What’s that mean?” you might be asking. Let me explain. There were two different types of “tea” offered in 19th century Britain. Afternoon tea and high tea. Often the two are used interchangeably but they are distinctly different things. Afternoon tea is served around 4pm and was meant to “fill the gap” between breakfast and dinner. It was an upper class custom. High tea on the other hand has working class roots. Workers in industrial Britain had to wait until after…

Safi Morocco Potter at Work

Safi: The Pottery Capital of Morocco

Chances are if you have a piece of pottery from Morocco it’s signed “Safi” on the back. Safi is not a person’s name, it’s the name of a coastal city where the bulk of Morocco’s pottery is made. In fact this is one of the only things Safi is known for, but what a reputation to have! When my mom was visiting we decided to go to Safi and see the process. From Marrakech it was a day trip and while the roads in some places were not so great it was well worth the trip.