Twenty nineteen. A year of adventure, of change, and of great memories.
Long time no see. The month of November through December are always harder and busier months for me, hence the lack of blog posts on this page recently. During the winter months, the inspiration to travel and go on adventures is much lower which makes it quite difficult to create content and put out interesting posts. With the new year though, I always like to do a recap of all the things I’ve accomplished over the past 365 days which not only helps me look back on everything but also helps me gain my inspiration back. With that being said, I hope you all had a great new year and all the best in this new decade.
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From white sand beaches and towering mountains to stunning hot air balloon shows in Cappadocia and spice-trading bazaars, Turkey is the perfect blend of European and Middle Eastern influences, being recognized as the bridge between the two continents. Over 80 million people live in Turkey today with the country also being home to some of the earliest human civilization dating back over 11,000 years ago. Though the landscapes and the stunning architecture are enough to convince anyone to visit Turkey, the cuisine, which pulls inspiration from European, Asian, and Middle Eastern dishes, is the selling point with many traditional dishes to choose from.
Having been subscribed to Universal Yums for over two years now, it was inevitable that we’d eventually get a box from a country that we previously tried, which was the case this month. While I was contemplating skipping over this month as to not try the same snacks all over again, I decided to go for it regardless. Surprisingly, while there were a couple of snacks that were repeats from last time, there was also a bunch of new ones that we hadn’t yet tried. With new and exciting snacks to try such as orange-vanilla cake and carrot Turkish delight, let’s get right into snacking!
Click here to see what treats we tried the last time we ventured to Turkey with Universal Yums.
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Consisting of over 17,000 islands, six official languages, and the most unique landscapes in the world, it’s no surprise that Indonesia is one of the most diverse countries out there. Located along the equator between Malaysia and Australia, Indonesia is a populous country with over 250 million inhabitants calling it their home. The country also has historic ties to other countries such as the Netherlands, Portugal, and India making it the culturally diverse place that it is today. With different religions and customs comes different cuisines, something that Indonesia is known for, with lots of the local dishes being influenced by food from many different countries, such as India. From grilled beef snacks and cheese wafers to sweeter options like milk gummies and cola burger candies, we’ll be getting a taste of just how different and unique the food and snacks are in beautiful Indonesia.
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With the temperatures rising, days getting longer, and tan lines getting darker, that can only mean one thing; summer is officially at our doors. With the start of the summer months comes the unofficial start to road trip season, the perfect time to get out and explore your surroundings all the while discovering brand new places along the way. Road trips can be very exciting and are personally one of my favorite things to do in the summer but with all of that excitement can come a whole lot of problems if you’re not prepared. Because I’m a big list-making person and because it’s easy to forget important things when you’re overly excited and anxious to get on the road, I’ve put together a little packing list with all of the road trip essentials you may need for your upcoming summer road trips. Keep on reading to find out the best things to bring along with you, and drive safe!
Read also ‘How To Have The Most Stress Road Trip Possible‘
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The birthplace of Gangam style, popular boy band BTS, and one of the world’s first ‘smart cities’, South Korea is a hub for culture and architectural wonder. Known officially as the Republic of South Korea, the country was formed in 1984 and has only continued to thrive and blossom since then, creating an enormous global influence along the way. The high tech nation is the birthplace of many famous electronic brands such as Samsung and LG but is also a mecca for nature lovers and adventurers with rugged mountaintops and densely forested national parks to discover. What makes this country so unique however, is their Asian cuisine. South Korea is world famous for dishes such as ‘kimchi’ and ‘bulgogi’ as well as their snacks which we will be taste testing this month. From headline grabbing chocolate pies, soy sauce flavored treats, and the famous bright red snack ‘tteokbokki’, it is clear to see why food is such an important part of South Korea’s culture.
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A site of some of the earliest human civilization and a country that has only been independent for 71 years, Israel is our next destination with Universal Yums. Israel is not only an extremely old country, it is also one of the holiest places on Earth, specifically for Christians, Jews, and Muslims. Jerusalem, a tiny city 100 times smaller than Disney World, is the site of two of these important places, both the site in which Jesus Christ was crucified as well as his resting place, and is one of the most popular places in Israel for tourists as well as for religious pilgrimages. Since 1948, the Israeli citizens have been working hard to establish their country and to create their own unique traditions, pastimes, landmarks, and food, after having been ruled by multiple different empires throughout history. Lucky for us, we’ll be getting the chance to try some of their snack food inventions this month, including the popping chocolate bar which is one of the newest creations to halva and baklava, treats that have been around for ages.
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Ukraine, a country I never thought I would be trying snacks from, yet here we are. For the month of March, we’ll be heading off on a journey through Ukraine with Universal Yums where we’ll be taste testing things such as cheese and chocolate wafers as well as meat jelly flavored chips and fruit filled caramels. A bit of a backstory on this country before we hop into the snacks, the Ukraine has been ruled by many different nations throughout it’s existence as a country. First it was Poland who had control of this country followed by Austria-Hungary and then fell under the control of the USSR in 1912. Seventy years passed while Ukraine was powered by the Soviet Union until the USSR collapsed in 1991 and Ukraine finally gained its independence. While this resilient country has changed hands quite a few times throughout history, one thing that has remained is their way of life, with traditional celebrations and their one of a kind cuisine still remaining huge focal points about the country today.
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From chocolate bunnies and brightly colored eggs, Easter is at our doors once again. Once celebrated primarily by Christians looking to honor the life and death of Jesus Christ, the holiday today is much more commercialized and more widely celebrated across the globe. While Easter in places such as the United States and Canada may be synonym with Easter egg hunts and visits from the Easter bunny, in different places around the globe the Easter holiday looks a whole lot different. Here are some of the countries with the most unique Easter traditions and celebrations.
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From the leaning tower of Pisa and the Roman ruins that offer a step back into history to the watery canals of Venise, Italy is a place known for both it’s beautiful architecture and its delicious food. It is also a country that has heavily influenced the rest of the world not only due to the talented fashion designers such as Gucci and Versace but also for incredible artists like Leonardo da Vinci who paved for the way for the future of fine art. Food is also a huge thing that we can appreciate about Italy, think spaghetti and meatballs and pepperoni pizza, but this European country is also known for many other popular snacks ranging from black truffle chips and lemon pepper crackers to orange-carrot cake and a chocolate bar made only for the richest of the rich, all of which we’ll be getting a taste of this month.
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As we head into February, stores will start going into full on Valentines mode with shelves brimming with heart shaped chocolate boxes, pink stuffed animals, and cheesy cards. Valentines Day is one of those holidays that you either love or hate, which mostly depends on if you’re single or not. Celebrated mainly in North America, this holiday started in the year 496 and is derived from an ancient Roman celebration originally to commemorate the beginning of Spring. Over the years, the church decided to turn the festival into a Christian holiday created to commemorate St Valentine, the saint of love. Nowadays, gift giving and romantic dinners are synonym with the holiday of love but in different parts of the world, they like to do things a bit differently. With Valentines Day right around the corner, we’ll be discovering 15 different countries around the world who celebrate the holiday in their own unique way.
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