VLOG CITY LIFE: April 2018: I See You Tampa! This is the Foodiva Post For You + Hauls + Fitness + Gluten Free & Pescatarian Meals

This photo accurately summed up my month! It was a whirlwind of fun and fabulousness. We had already done a lot just by the second week of the month and then we went off on our roadrip to the low country. Looking back at this post I can't believe it all happened this month because it seems so long ago in retrospect. 


In the city:

Heights Public Market at the Tampa Armature Works

Miguels Tampa

FITNESS: Vacation usually takes a toll on my fitness routine even if I try to eat mindfully. This month I got a lot of workouts in and I worked out during vacation also (those photos will be in next months post). This month has ben great because I did 3 new yoga poses that I have never been able to do. There is nothing like the excited feeling of when you execute a pose that you have been struggling with for years. I am convinced now, at this point, it is more of my fear that is stopping me from doing inversions. When I look back I can't believe how long I have been doing yoga and how far I have come.

Even though when I first started it was so hard, I did not give up and I am glad. I still have so much further to go also! I may never get to the point where my arms are strong enough to support myself in a headstand and I may never get my leg to bend all the way up, but I will keep trying because it doesn't hurt to try. I can't is not in my vocabulary. 

So this month was bittersweet because the Fabletics brand ambassador program came to an end unexpectedly. I was a brand ambassador from the very start of the program and I had so much fun participating. I as a person gained a lot of confidence because of that program because I finally had nice workout clothes and because we always had challenges and missions to complete and post on social media. Prior to that, I had never posted any workout photos on my social media and frankly my entire fitness wardrobe consisted of 1 outfit from Old Navy. I had the bad habit of notoriously working out in things that were not appropriate for working out.

Sharing my fitness journey and then starting yoga in 2016 opened up a side to me that was pretty insecure I suppose, but now I feel confident in what I do. All of these photos are from a challenge that I was working on. They are all new poses that I have never done and all variations of the dancer pose.

This month I continued to take my workout outside and I am so happy that I did that. Working out in my condo has become almost impossible because we have very little space. If I fall I will most likely break my fall on a piece of furniture. I do still have my yoga corner which for the most part I can get a lot done in, but for example, attempting a handstand anywhere in here would be dangerous. I am going to be sad when the summer comes full blast because it will be over 100 degrees outside and I won't be able to workout outside unless its in the morning.

Utthita Hasta Padangustasana- Hand to big toe pose

Eagle pose left

HAULS: I was able to pick up some items from Kendra Scott at a good deal. They had some kind of sale where for every 60.00 you spend you get a free 50.00 bangle. I saw that they marked down the jewelry tray in pyrite (which is one of my favorite stones) so I grabbed that and the Candace cuff and scored 4 free bangles.

Adore Me

I also just want to add there are many things that I purchase on a regular basis from Amazon and you guys can find them here. This list has my staple hair products on it and I plan on speaking more on that in May. You can also find the same yoga gear that I use there in case some of you were wondering where I get some of my items to help me become more flexable.

Looking back at this month we had a lot of date nights! I loose track of them most of the time because to me it doesn't seem like we go out that much. However, with the new food halls open in Tampa Heights it is cheaper and easier to do a quick date night vrs the full blown date night. Everywhere we went this month were "old favorites" meaning the service is always reliable and great (with exception to Cooper's hawk because they have not been reliable or consistent). At the top here is the fancy date night at Armani's Tampa which is one of the most romantic places to dine in South Tampa because its on the 14th floor of the hotel and has a panoramic rooftop terrace.

Armanis at the Hyatt Hotel- Misto bar selection which is my favorite

Boca Kitchen- Tampa

Roy's Tampa
I have told you all numerous times don't sleep on this restaurant! Every time we come here the service is above the bar and we get treated great! They have a scratch kitchen and can accommodate most requests and their drinks are on point. What is funny is that it really isn't that busy on Fridays so we come in for Aloha hour and have a great time in the bar area. Just writing about this makes me want to go there right now for some drinks and food lol.

I always joke with my husband about our evolution as adults because we came here maybe 6 years ago when we were still in college and we felt like it was over priced and we did not feel like the food was worth the price. Now, we both value different things as adults like good service, locally sourced fresh foods, and scratch kitchens. 6 years ago I was 29 and still in the burbs (where there were mostly chain restaurants) most likely still eating at places that most likely had questionable service. I do remember getting food poisoning at a place we loved right before moving to South Tampa and that was when I decided as a customer I was owed more!

Hall on Franklin 

If you want a laid back evening come here during the week and it will be like this, they have good- strong drinks and good food. There isn't a lot that I can get that is gluten free, but I can usually find something.

Elevage At the Epicuran Hotel
I am in love with this hotel! We only stayed here for one night back in November and it was just so much fun! The hotel itself is fun, they have a great spirits store with inexpensive wine and old world wine and whiskeys. The restaurant Elevage is always consistent and the food is always great. I love that they also have a rooftop bar and I like it up there when it's not so busy. The Epicuren is located in an area of Hyde Park that I love because its chic and sexy and just nestled back right by the water.

Cooper's Hawk Tampa
I already spoke about Cooper's Hawk in the original blog post and won't go into that any further, but I did file a complaint with them and heard nothing back so yea, I won't be returning. I am still on the fence about canceling my wine membership. As you can see every month I post lots of other wines that I buy from Trader Joe's and from the local stores within walking distance of my condo.


Serene: Sea Salt, Crystalline Waters, Coconut Milk, Driftwood: Another clean fresh scent, it was enjoyable for the entire time it burned.

LOVE: Black currant, Elderberry, Green Leaves, and vanilla sugar: This candle smelled light and fresh. It burned evenly until the very end and provided fragrance all over my condo. I absolutely loved the scent!

Mango: This candle started out smelling great, it did not really smell like mangos, but just a light fresh scent. After having lit it a few times the scent got more faint and more sweet as if it changed a little bit. This one is more subtle compared to LOVE.


Green Thai Curry (made from scratch) with shrimp, bamboo chips, carrots and celery and basmati quinoa rice.

This was a quick late night snack. My husband brought home these frozen Ore-Ida potatoes and I gave them a try. They have a really strange texture and I just couldn't get with it. I usually buy whole potatoes and cut them up myself and make baked fries and this was just a miss for me since that is what I am used to. I gave it a good try though with cheddar cheese and fresh parsley.

roast chicken breast w mushroom risotto and sous vide harcourt verts with almonds

I cook so much that I have so many dinner photos back logged so everyone in a while one w meat will pop up. I mention that because my husband went Pescatarian a few month's ago and in a week he will be at 3 months. So this chicken meal was cooked prior to that. He still loved it though. I still eat meat (I am a flexitarian which means I eat mostly vegetarian, but I am flexible with the seafood and meat).

 garlic butter noodles with Parmigiana Reggiano

salmon with fried capers and garlic butter noodles

This was a completely experimental dinner! I have never thought to pair salmon and noodles before, but I love salmon so I wanted to give it a try. When I tell you this was the best dinner ever...this was delicious!!!!!!!! I started off by making my buttery cheese mixture. I don't do a lot of butter or cheese in my recipes so I kept it light enough to where the sauce only thinly coated the noodles. Once my sauce was cooked ( it takes only 5 minutes) I poured it over my gluten free spaghetti. For this sauce you want to use a gluten free noodle that has slip like a corn noodle or what I used here was a potato blend by Bio Nature. Next I cooked my capers in the same cast iron and I roasted my salmon in the oven at 415 for 25 minutes. Once the salmon is done you just plate everything and try to make it look pretty!

Spicey chicken noodle soup

I looked at a lot of seafood gumbo recipes and was not convinced any of them were exactly what I wanted. I have never made seafood gumbo before, but I at least knew how I wanted it to taste. Here is the recipe I used from Martha Stewart.

Below are the changes that I made:

Add Zaterans extra spicy crab boil to sauce
use spaghetti sauce
1 can of diced tomatoes
seafood broth instead of shrimp shell/water
use actual crab legs no lump crab
add a little cajun seasoning
3/4 cup of oil instead of 1 (I felt this recipe had entirely too much oil)
optional okra

Note to self: Don't bother sweating out veggies the cast iron will break them down
the roux only needs 10 min of stirring in cast iron

Cast iron hot chicken drumsticks

Pan fried green tomatoes



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