Tampa’s Mayor River O’ green fest

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20170320_033710Our third year attending and the best one yet.. refreshing drinks,  just the right amount of breeze, live music, games, vendors, friendly, beautiful people- this is why I love Tampa. Any event, holiday or festival going on has the support of the whole town! Everyone comes out! This year there were many water sports/ activities added.  I love this growing city and everything it has to offer. ❤

Xo, Betty in Tampa

Henry. 

Just look at him! Henry is adorable ❤

The first summer of sharing custody is when Henry entered our lives. I had no business at a veterinarian clinic, but I was there, standing in-front of their “community board”. I must’ve looked like a weirdo.

I pulled a number and called. A construction crew had found a litter at their site, had gotten the kittens vaccinated. They had found homes for 3 of the 4 kittens and we set up a time to meet the one left. 

Henry almost brought me to tears and the love I immediately felt could only be compared to the love I felt when I met my newborn. This makes Henry family, he is no pet.

Henry was such a curious baby! He climbed everywhere, now he naps more than climbs😊 I’m looking into installing shelves for him to roam on. 

The pink bra has a back story. Henry won a dog vs cat pink bra for breast cancer contest! Mouthful, I know, but just look at him! He deserved 1st place!

Henry is my main buddy, I respect his boundaries when he doesn’t want to cuddle.  

Henry also has a keen sense for knowing when me or Abby are sick or feeling down. . Henry doesn’t leave our side if we have the sniffles! 

Perhaps my  empty nest brought me to Henry, or maybe I wanted to be the parent who got her kid kitten for love. Although it’s hard for me to think that I would even subconsciously do that. 

Either way, that is how Henry made his way to us, bringing nothing but happiness and full hearts with him.

Xo, Betty in Tampa 

The Vault of Souls

An eerie night set up with entertainment, drinks and a mystery to solve. This night was fantastic!

The time to enjoy ourselves, lounge, chat and mingle with both guests and the entertainment, was perfect!

Then we were given these beauties! The hardest thing in the world is to wear a mask over glasses. Oh, and be forbidden to speak! That made it oh so naughty but nice!

Clowning around with T and this handsome clown!

Once we were safely out of the vault, where our phones absolutely had to be turned off, we had more drinks  and fun with these 50’s styled dancers. That one on the left was a goner by 2am, it was quite amusing.

The evening could not have ended without my very first bathroom selfie! Not too shabby! Thunder thighs!! 🙂

And a story to remember, we asked that gentleman/mummy for permission for a photo-op for a good solid minute.. It was most amusing I’m sure, but we are the type to laugh at ourselves the loudest! 🙂

To good friends and good times! I’m ready for next year Vault of Souls!

Xo, Betty in Tampa

Oxford Exchange

A warm-not scorching day in Tampa- brought us to the Oxford Exchange.

Going with the intention of a light afternoon lunch but always turning into a book shopping- tea or coffee drinking experience with friendly, ready to start up a conversation with type-of-strangers; that sums up my experiences at the Oxford Exchange.

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No worries- Buddy Brew never disappoints with a great cup of joe. But if tea is your poison, then tea Bella is just a few feet away…

The shopping hooks me in the food makes me return. Fabulous options- Vegan accommodations- drinks worth trying. And the cutest way you’ll ever receive a check- ever. I’ll let you find that one out.

Also- the petite, and adorned too cute to eat cupcakes at Buddy Brew are a definite A+ always.

Xo, Betty in Tampa

 

Late night meal

What can I say. If I’m hungry, I’m certainly going to eat.  I had eaten so much fruit during the day, I had the craving for something a bit heavier.

Cue the chicken-less chicken brand! Amazing soy and plant based meat substitute.  I love it!  The versatility of it is Amazing! You can use it however you would use “chicken”!

Now veganism for me wasnt about finding “fake” meats.. but our mind is a powerful thing.. we don’t want to “go without”.  I personally need the “meaty” texture in my food.. mushrooms are a big staple for me to use a regular substitute or veggie burgers.

Trader Joe’s is my go to place for soy chorizo,  chicken-less chicken strips, veggie burgers.

Xo,  Betty in Tampa

 

Vegan: Stuffed potato skins

So-  the original recipe called for..

  • 1 bag fresh baby spinach
  • 1 cup chickpeas
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1½ tablespoons butter
  • 2 medium or large sweet potatoes

But…

I veganized it and used vegan butter and about 8 mini potatoes- it was fantastic! The chickpeas I mixed with fresh cilantro, mashed potatoes, lemon juice, salt and some Chipotle veganaise.

Coconut oil on the pan and olive oil drizzled onto the stuffed potatoes.

Pop in the over 30-40mins on 350°…

Beware, I ate all of them, as soon as they came out. I tried putting them onto another plate. I just couldn’t. Before I knew it- they were all gone.

Xo, Betty in Tampa

Saturday Nights. Sometimes at home.

I don’t know how I feel about getting personal with you all. Letting you in to my toughts and feelings. My life. What I think. What I do. What I want. Oh what fun it would be though, it would be as if we were having a conversation and the reader is just a very good listener. I appreciate you. I appreciate you reading me. Even if noone reads me, I have written it down, and like Dumbledore with his memories, sharing them or storing them makes them weigh less and unclouds others for more clarity and focus.

Saturday, at different ages or stages of adulhood places everyone at different places, physically and figuratively. The people who end up having these places in common tend to become close friends.

Tonight, I clean, I listen to iheartradio, then I switch it to NPR, eat, drink and cuddle with a both fierce and loving companion. Henry.

Early day tomorrow, so no night out on the town tonight, but Monday I’m off,  so, tomorrow evening will be no holds barred and Game of Thrones at 9pm.

Xo, Boring Betty in Tampa lol

Tampa Vegan Finds!

The struggle is real. Finding vegan foods besides produce is hard. You have to shop selectively. However, when you find your stores, stick to them and they will make your life easy. My shopping is done between Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods and Walgreens!

Cupcakes from the bakery section: vanilla, chocolate, and carrot all vegan! amazing! Not pictured- in the bakery section were also donuts! glazed chocolate and vanilla plus we got half a dozen vegan chocolate chip cookies!

Raw, gluten free,  vegan raspberry cheesecake!

Good dog vegan hot dogs!

So delicious is by far- personally- the most innovative brand of vegan foods. So delicious coconut whipped cream and so delicious vegan chocolate cheesecake will be heavenly ❤

Peach jello! Finally! A gelatin free jello… sigh- I really thought I’d never have jello again…

Califia Farms. Now that’s a brand merging culture + vegan lifestyle and winning! Horchata is an amazingly refreshing rice water drink with added cinnamon for more of a traditional flavor. I’m Mexican and they had me at horchata.

I don’t care much for lasagna but I want to be able to tell nonvegans that they can have an alternative that is perfectly delicious and no animals have to die from it. For this reason, I will try it 😆

And once again, we’re wrapping it up with so delicious non dairy, gluten free, almond milk cookies and cream niceeeee cream! It’s greeeeeeeat!

Xo, Betty in Tampa

 

Lemon Grass Thai Kitchen

Coconut soup. Simply. Delicious.

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TOM KHA (Coconut Soup)
Coconut soup with lemon grass, kaffir lime leaves, mushrooms, onions, cilantro & scallions.
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Lemon Grass Thai Kitchen makes for such a delicious time! Their buffet time is full of delicious items! Plus, being right off of Kennedy Blvd, Lemon Grass Thai Kitchen is an easy place to take your girlfriends and / or daughter any day of the week, no matter where in Tampa you are.

They also have a coconut water that is sooooooooooo refreshing with real coconut chunks that are perfect bite size thickness. Love it all! Thai- check, Vegan options- check!

Xo, Betty in Tampa

 

 

 

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