As we're approaching the end of July I thought let's start with something new.
From today on, at the end of each month, I will share with you my favourite discoveries of the past month — books I read, new websites I came across, learning experiences and aha erblebnissen, inspiring people, cool podcasts, new vegan hotspots — anything I think you might like as well!
So what news did July bring me?
It's been a great month filled with loads of fresh organic fruit, a palate-pleasing citytrip to Ghent, and some interesting learning experiences.
One Pleasant Place — GHENT
Last week Jeroen and I visited Ghent, one of Belgium's most inspirational cities. Ghent is well-known for its vegan-friendly shops and bars and its progressive and vibrant atmosphere. Once a year, they organize the 'Gentse Feesten', which is a 10-day long festival in the heart of the city with over one million visitors each year and streets and public squares filled with music, streetfood, entertainment, pop-up shops, second hand markets and so on. Since I'm so into trying new vegan food everywhere, we visited a lot of vegan bars, pop-ups and food stalls and tried some delicious new foods! Here's my 4 favourite Gentse Feesten hotspots:
A vegan pop-up coffee bar in the garden of the Veggiehuis, the headquarters of EVA vzw. They serve fresh brew coffee, vegan lattes and vegan pastry from diverse Ghent bakeries.
Madam Bakster is a young Ghent entrepreneur with an online bakery where she sells 'guilt-free' healthy vegan cakes. I have been following her on Facebook for a while and was utterly surprised to find her selling cakes in real life at Full Circle Coffee! So I couldn't help but finally try some of her delicious pastries. Jeroen and I shared a slice of 'rosalie', a fudgy chocolate cake topped with coconut cream and fresh berries.
For dinner, I went to the Just Like Your Mom food stall. JLYM is a vegan catering and tour support service. They sell homemade chili burgers, kebab, veggie platters and classic pastry like brownies, doughnuts and Berliners. Berliner pastries, to make things clear. And I couldn't resist. When I was ordering my veggie platter, a Berliner was staring at me so intensely, I couldn't help but order one. Really delicious!
You know how it goes on festivals, strolling around for hours just hangin' and chillin' a little here and there. That's how we discovered The O'Yo Cult Café, a little pop-up bar in a tiny alley in the heart of Ghent. The bar was a temporary collaboration between O'Yo organic yoghurt bar and CULT micro brewery. They served fermented drinks and cocktails with kefir and kombucha as well as carrot cake, yoghurt, sourdough sandwiches, fermented veggie wraps and more.
One Favourite Food — MANGOES
Ahh summer and all those juicy fruits that are in season! Mango, watermelon, nectarine, cherries, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries... Love love love them all! At the moment, mango is my #1 smoothie base favourite.
GOLDEN MANGO SUPERFOOD SMOOTHIE (serves 2)
A high-speed blender.
- 1 mango
- 1 banana
- about 2 cups of water (add more until desired consistency)
- a small handful of goji berries
- 1/2 cm piece of ginger
- 1 tbsp chia seeds
- 1 tsp maca
- 1/3 tsp turmeric
- 1/3 tsp cinnamon
- 1/6 tsp raw sea salt
Blend everything together until smooth and enjoy this energy-boosting, immune-strenghtening drink.
One Wonderful Website — NOMADLIST
Over the past couple of months, the idea of working location independently has been drifting through my mind. As I was searching the web for more information on the topic, I discovered these two handy websites Nomad List and Workfrom.
NomadList is a super-user-friendly online database that lists the world's best places for digital nomads, put together in neat categories. You can for example filter locations by budget, weather, air quality, nightlife, gay friendliness, etc.
They also have a library of places you can work from like co-working spaces, private homes, work-friendly bars and cafés... OH YES one day, I'll be ready to pack my bags and work from a warmer and more inspiring place than cold grey Belgium. Will it be Portugal first? Greece, Thailand, Portland? Can't wait!
One Riveting Read — MEDICAL MEDIUM
Last week I started reading the book Medical Medium by Anthony Williams. I discovered the guy via an article I read on Goop a couple of months ago called 'The Medical Medium—and What’s Potentially at the Root of Medical Mysteries'.
The title immediately caught my attention. Yes, my eczema is a medical mystery. I told you before about my seven year long journey from doctor to doctor, none of them able to come up with a more accurate explanation than 'It's in your genes, you'll have to learn to live with it.' Uhh, sorray? Glad I did some research myself.
Anyway, I'm going off topic.
That Goop article was such an eye-opener, I really recommend you read it too if you suffer from a 'mystery illness' like eczema, psoriasis, fibromyalgia, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, lyme disease or chronic fatigue syndrome.
However, when I read the author's bio and saw that he was a spiritual medium 'with the unique ability to converse with a high-level spirit who provides him with extraordinarily accurate health information,' I have to admit he lost me a little. I like scientific proof and clear-cut info when it comes to health advice, so I decided not to purchase his book.
But then, a couple of weeks ago, a friend shared another article from Anthony Williams on Facebook about 'Healing Acne, Eczema and Psoriasis', which spoke to me so precisely that I couldn't turn away any longer. I bought his book, started reading and it's been such a super-interesting read! I'm still a bit cautious about recommending it, but I'll definitely write a more in-depth review when I finished it.
One Peachy Product — YLANG YLANG
I recently bought a little bottle of ylang ylang essential oil for the first time, and it just smells SO NICE. Not much more to say about this though, you'll have to buy some yourself if you want to know what it smells like ;) I like to put a drop on the wood of my desk, or on my sheets before I go to bed. Very relaxing.
Oh! I actually have a second favourite product. It is my new eco yoga mat from Blisscloud. It's so beautiful, comfy, made of natural rubber and it's even machine washable. You can find more pictures here.
Hope you liked this post! What are your favourite July discoveries? What books are you reading, which people did you start following, what's your favourite food?
Let me know in the comments section below!