Sunday Stories for January 18th, 2015

Here’s what I enjoyed reading this week and I think you may enjoy these stories, too.

30 New Year’s Resolutions to Rock Your 2015

Even if you don’t make New Year’s resolutions, and I don’t, these are great ideas to implement into your life.

One of the reasons we fail to follow through with our resolutions is because we set lofty goals that are nearly impossible to reach. Many of us haven’t yet become the type of person that is capable of achieving our biggest goals.


20 Surprising Health Benefits of Coffee

Things to think about as you’re pouring your third cup of the morning.

In its original form, it’s a whole food that contains a plethora of beneficial nutrients and antioxidants. The key is knowing where to find high-quality coffee and how to avoid losing any of its health benefits by decreasing its nutrient content or adding harmful substances, like artificial ingredients.

Free In-Room Hotel Coffee: A Right Or Privilege?

While we’re on the subject of coffee — I love my morning coffee, and that doesn’t change when I’m on the road. I do make the first cup in my room, drinking it while I’m getting ready to face the day. This article raises an interesting questions, and I’m curious how you’d answer it – Is FREE in room coffee a right or a privilege?

Which got me thinking… is free in-room coffee a right or a privilege? And does it make any difference that the hotel offers free coffee and croissants in the lobby? Have you ever seen another hotel that charges for in-room coffee?

Read original article here: Free In-Room Hotel Coffee: A Right Or Privilege?

Cuba — open for US travelers

This is something I’ve been waiting on for a long time. Cuba has been on my bucket list for eons, but I’ve not managed to thwart the ban and go. That all changes with the opening up of the country for U.S. travel. Who wants to go?

Lying on a white sand beach at the edge of the turquoise sea, I could have been at any Caribbean destination. The major difference was that I was enjoying an experience which few Americans could share for more than the past 50 years. That is likely to change somewhat in the future under the recent agreement for Cuba and the United States to reestablish diplomatic relations, lift trade barriers and ease restrictions on travel to Cuba by people from this country.


Road Rules: Driving to Sicily

I flew into Cantania, Sicily, but did rent a car while there. I love this story of the driving adventure of this charming island off the west coast of Italy.

Driving tip #1: Don’t rent anything bigger than a Punto or a Panda—otherwise, there’s no way you’re going to fit through the narrow streets of the small Italian towns. It may feel like a clown car at first, but trust me, you’ll be glad you did.

Facebook vigilantes falsely shame one man, cause death of another

Think. Just think before sharing some things. Run a Snopes, check to see if it’s an urban legend. But don’t just share things because “it can’t hurt, even if it’s not true.” It can.

On my personal Facebook I’m always going on about how people shouldn’t just re-share everything they see on Facebook. Facebook has become a dumping ground for every misinformed story and urban legend on the internet. I’m about to show you two examples of why you shouldn’t do that.

Cruising Health: Avoiding Norovirus – The Travel Pharmacist

Lisa offers good advice on how to stay healthy when you’re traveling. You’ll want to bookmark this blog and return often for great info about getting and staying healthy on the road.

So how can you avoid the norovirus illness and concentrate on enjoying your fabulous cruise? First, let’s understand more about what CAUSES norovirus illness. Norovirus is not just one, but a group of viruses, any one of which can cause symptoms. You’ll also hear norovirus illness referred to as stomach flu, gastroenteritis, or food poisoning. Whatever it’s called, this highly contagious bug is NOT a pleasant souvenir of your travels.

Airline Club Lounge Tipping Etiquette

Do you tip in the airport lounge? Here’s one viewpoint of when and why it’s appropriate.

So while it’s perfectly understandable to fundamentally oppose the US tipping culture, I don’t think it’s fair to let it out on the front line employees that work in the service industry.

glass of wine

New Year, New Muesli

Muesli is a great “travelers” breakfast. Prepare all the dried ingredients and pack away in your carry on. Pick up some milk or yogurt on the road (or at the airport for eating on the plane), grab some fresh fruit, and you’ve got a healthy and easy to pack breakfast.

Muesli is simple, easy, unpretentious. Muesli is the original overnight oats. You just mix some oats and fruits with liquid and let it soak overnight. Add nuts and other flavorings at will.

Edamame with Smoked Paprika

Here’s another easy to pack snack – edamame. Make in advance, pack in it a plastic bag, and you have a healthy and flavorful snack for the road.

Edamame is one of my favorite snacks and here’s one of my favorite ways to prepare it. Smoked paprika gives it just a little kick and it’s delicious!

Foie gras back on menu in California

Good news for foie gras lovers in, or visiting, California.

Californians will be able to legally eat foie gras again after a judge Wednesday overturned a ban on sales of the delicacy, outlawed in the US state for the past 18 months.

Mary Jo Manzanares is a traveler, travel blogger, and podcaster. In addition to her blog, Traveling with MJ, she hosts the Where Else to Go podcast, and is the founder and the editor-in-chief of The Traveler’s Way, an online travel magazine. Her travel ethos is value luxury - luxury for real people - and her goal is to help travelers know when to splurge and when to save. Mary Jo has been a speaker at various industry events around the world. When she’s not traveling, Mary Jo likes lingering over a cup of coffee, wandering in a museum, sipping wine at a cafe, and sharing it all with friends and readers. Her most recent travels were to Stockholm, a Baltic cruise, and Universal Orlando Resort.

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