Why I Started This Blog – City Nibbler
I have always been told that I should start a blog, and I can’t count the number of times that friends have asked me for travel tips. I’m flattered when asked for restaurant recommendations to celebrate a major life event like a birthday or graduation. I guess my Instagram account and my Facebook posts show how food focused my life is, especially when it comes to traveling. I love to eat good food, I love to travel, and I feel like the two go hand-in-hand.
My one regret is…that I didn’t listen sooner and get started. Life got in the way as it tends to do, especially now with a toddler around. My college degree is in Elementary Education. I taught Kindergarten and 1st grade for several years, which I am very passionate about, except it kept me too busy to do anything else on the side. But now I've buried the excuses and finally got all of my ducks in a row. My official food and travel blog is up and running – City Nibbler. I couldn’t be more excited to share it with you! This is my little corner of the internet where I can finally record and share my nerdy passion for food and travel. Get ready for a delicious and culturally diverse journey!
My husband Nate and I have been married for almost eight years, and we haven’t stayed put in one place for very long. Our moving habits have often been compared to, “Where’s Waldo?,” because you never really know where we will be. We have lived in many wonderful places – Hawaii, Utah, London, Virginia, Idaho, Las Vegas, and Michigan. We currently live in Seville, Spain, and later this year we will be moving back to New York City. Having been born and raised in a small town in Northern Idaho, I never really left home until college. I can now say that, I LOVE TO MOVE! Not the actual packing boxes and physically moving them part (that part sucks), but being able to experience new places and meet new people has been so incredibly rewarding and enriching. I can honestly say that I have found beauty in every place that I have lived, whether in the culture, the people, the scenery, or the food.
In between all of those moves, we have found time for travel, and we aren’t afraid of bringing our two-year old son, Jimmy, along with us. Our old white mini-van has almost 200,000 miles on it, taking us on road trip after road trip, allowing us to explore and see so many fun places throughout the United States. We have driven around the entire U.S. in that silly car – eating cheesesteak sandwiches in Philadelphia on the East coast and street tacos in Los Angeles on the West coast. When we are craving a bigger adventure, we hop on a plane. I loved our time in Cambodia, bouldering around on all the ancient temple ruins by day and dining on Amok Curry served in banana leaves by night. During our time in Morocco, I felt like an extra in Aladdin as I walked through the chaotic and colorful souk marketplaces while sipping freshly squeezed orange juice. As far as food goes, Paris is where my food heart is at. I would do anything to go to town right now on a freshly buttery crepe or a cream filled pastry at any local Parisian bakery. And Italy, you are a close second in the food department. I love all your cities, but Venice takes the cake. The nonstop gelato shops and handmade pastas make me completely forget about wanting to fit into my skinny jeans. But for me, nothing can beat relaxing on a warm turquoise beach. Running my feet through velvety white sand with a cold and refreshing acai bowl in hand. Thailand and Hawaii, I miss you.
For every place that I have ever lived or visited, I loved scouting out the best food in that area. I love finding little hole in the wall places that only the locals know about. I love eating the signature dish at a restaurant to get a feel for the chef’s style and creativity. I’ve never met a food cuisine that I didn't get along with, but the ones I could never part with are Thai and Indian. Eating sub-par food doesn’t do it for me. I want the best, the award winning, the highest reviewed food that place has to offer. I want to eat it with my eyes first, take some pictures, and then devour it with my mouth. I guess you could say I’m a food snob. Well, if being a food snob is wrong, then I don't want to be right.
Nate and I both agreed before we became parents that we wouldn't become boring or unadventurous after having a child. Yes, traveling with Jimmy makes things more complicated and tricky at times but the good definitely outweighs the bad. In my opinion, children who are well traveled and exposed to new cultures at a young age, grow up to be more interesting, well-rounded and most importantly, accepting of others who are different than them. They realize that people are people, no matter where they are from, and that all people just want one thing – love. Growing up in Idaho, I was always surrounded by people who looked like me. The first time I really met someone of a different race than me was middle school when an African-American girl moved into the area and was in my homeroom class. Having never been exposed to different cultures or races, I found myself staring at her when she wasn't looking because I was just so unfamiliar with her race. I hope Jimmy is different than I was at that age. I hope he doesn't even blink an eye when someone enters the room who looks different than he does – seeing people as people, analyzing their hearts instead of their skin color. Hopefully his rapidly growing passport will help to mold him into a more accepting and loving adult.
I have had some amazing life experiences (as well as some trying ones!) that have shaped me into who I am today. The quote by Anita Desai that my childhood friend shared has really stuck with me, “Wherever You Go Becomes Apart of You Somehow.” This resonates with me. I am who I am today because of the places I have been and the people there who have touched my life and made a connection with me. I am like a never ending puzzle and my pieces are constantly being filled in. Like Glinda and Elphaba from Wicked sing, “Because I knew you, I have been changed for good.” Traveling has changed me for the good. It has become a part of me and made me a better person. I want to share my food and travel knowledge with you in hopes that you can have the same types of experiences as me. I have become a city nibbler and I invite you to nibble along with me and my family. Let me help you fall in love with some of my favorite food and travel experiences. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.
"Of All the Books in the World, the Best Stories are Found Between the Pages of a Passport." -Unknown