Simply Samantha
gluten free

Traveling, Gluten Free, and how to not lose your mind

9:32 AM

Y'all, traveling can be a bit much right? I personally love traveling but that doesn't mean it is any less anxiety-causing for me.

Cause y'all know what happens. All the news stories leading up to your trip start with "PLANE CRASHES" or "SECURITY SCARE DELAYS FLIGHTS".  Not the best things to see before you embark on a trip of your own. Add in allergies and you just increase your stress level to a 10... am I right? 

I'm not going to sit here and type out a post like I'm some nomad that knows what it's like to travel the globe. 
I am just sharing what I've learned from my very few experiences and hope that maybe some little bit helps you. 
However, I'd like to state I am a firm believer that everyone should travel in a way that works for them. Especially when it comes to traveling with food preferences/allergies/intolerances, everyone is going to travel differently.
Just don't be a jerk when you travel, no one wants you to be that. ;) 
Traveling, Gluten Free, and how to not lose your mind

Keep your body in Tip-Top Shape
I think the best way to prepare for travel is to prepare your body for travel and continue to keep it up while you travel. Germs are EVERYWHERE. While I'm not a HUGE germaphobe, I do think the one time in your life where you need to be is when you travel. 

  • Take some immune boosting supplements (such as elderberry) to fight off germs.
  • Pack hand sanitizer and use it like its going out of style.
  • Bring an extra pillowcase just in case the hotel one looks scetch-mago 🤭 
  • Bring an empty water bottle and keep it with you at all times to stay hydrated.
  • Try NOT to stress as this will compromise everything above and lead to sickness. 

#GLUTENFREEISLIFE
Here is the deal Y'all, I know how STRESSFUL eating outside your house can be when you are gluten-free (or insert other food allergies/intolerance here).
If you are traveling overseas, know that the many food systems in countries abroad are 10x better in the U.S. You will eat better, feel better, and won't get looked at funny when ordering the allergen menu. By all means, plan some cool places to eat, but don't do so that it ruins your trip because you are stressed about eating. Bring snacks, hit up the local grocery stores, and (as stupid as this sounds) just hope for the best. 🤞🏻

Travel in Comfort
This is pretty much a no brainer. As much as the old soul in me liked the idea that at one time Americans dressed up to travel, the lazy girl in me likes the idea of throwing on my Adidas and favorite F21 leggings. So, travel in what makes you feel comfy and good.

All in All, just relax
This is definitely easier said than done. This is coming from the over-thinking QUEEN. But when it comes down to it I can pinpoint all my travel meltdowns to my over-thinking, nervous tendency.
I've found having those little things that can help calm you relax. Mine is always a book. Give me a book, stick some headphones in my ears, and my blood pressure should lower ;) But find that one thing that can help distract you from the travel, relax you, and everything should be alright. 

eco-friendly

Love It | Shop

9:00 AM


I share a lot of things here on the blog and socials so I thought it was about time to condense it into a place on the blog where you can find products that I've shared and get them for yourself.

As of right now, none of these links are affiliate. However, as my blog grows, some may become affiliate.

I tried my best to link to the best prices available. But shop around. Healthy living isn't cheap so shop around, shop wholesale or at stores like TJ Maxx and Homegoods to find some of these products too.


Bath + Body


Everyone Lavender and Aloe 3-in-1 Soap

Earth Therapeutics Natural Hydro Body Sponge



 Face/Make Up

Burt's Bees BB Cream with SPF 15 Light-Med
Burt's Bees BB Cream with SPF 15 Light-Med


Burt's Bees Sensitive Facial Cleanser


Ecotools Start The Day Beautifully Kit Makeup Brush Set
EcoTools Makeup Brushes

Hair



Desert Essence Anti-Breakage Shampoo
Desert Essence Anti-Breakage Shampoo 

Avalon Organics Shampoo Clarifying Lemon


Giovanni 2chic® Repairing Shampoo with Blackberry & Coconut Milk
Giovanni Repairing Shampoo
with Blackberry and Coconut Milk




Image result for teleties
Teleties 

Giovanni 2chic® Ultra-Volume Big Body Hair Spray Tangerine & Papaya Butter


Home



Bissell Featherweight Stick Lightweight Bagless
 Vacuum One Size Fits All Blue
(great if you live in a small home)


 ZipTuck Storage Bags from Full Circle


Dish Brush




Full Circle ZipTuck Travel Set


Art Naturals Bluetoothâ„¢ Oil Diffuser
Art Naturals Bluetooth Diffuser

Clothes
product
Old Navy Luxe Soft Tops 
(I swear by these!) 

Dog
Ark Naturals Brushless Dog Toothpaste, Large 18 oz Pouch
Ark Naturals Brushless Dog toothpaste 


For the Man
Andalou Naturals MEN Fortifying Shampoo plus Conditioner 3 in 1
Andalou Naturals Men Fortifying Shampoo and Conditioner

Laundry + Cleaning

Earth Friendly Ecos® Floor Cleaner

Earth Friendly Ecos Floor Cleaner 
Earth Friendly Ecos® Laundry Detergent Magnolia & Lily
Earth Friendly Ecos Magnolia + Lilly 
(a staple in our house, I buy this monthly!)


Swiffer WetJet Compatible, Microfiber Mop Pads by Easily Greener, Reusable Refills for Wet Jet, 2 Count
Swiffer WetJet Compatible, Microfiber Mop Pads 


Travel


Food | Cooking | Baking





Bob's Red Mill

French Toast Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream

1:41 PM

Y'all, its no surprise at this point that I love a good cupcake. And while I'm very open that they are never made from scratch (striving for basic here 🙋🏻), I always like finding a way to spruce up those bland vanilla cupcakes with unique new flavors!

Gluten Free, Dairy Free French Toast Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream
Some cinnamon, nutmeg, and vanilla make up the cake part of this cupcake. Topped with my super simple buttercream that is infused with maple will have you wanting more!
Gluten Free, Dairy Free French Toast Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream
Gluten Free, Dairy Free French Toast Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream
They are the perfect sweet treat for Valentine's Day! 





print recipe

French Toast Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream
Ingredients
  • 1 Bag or Box of Gluten Free (vanilla) cake mix of your choice*
  • 1/2 tsp Cinnamon Powder
  • 1/4 tsp Nutmeg Powder
  • 1 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 3 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1 cup room temperature (about 2 sticks) Earth Balance Butter Sticks
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 2 tsp Maple Extract
  • Instructions
    Make cupcakes according to box and add in the cinnamon,nutmeg,and (1tsp) of vanilla extract.While cupcakes are baking, make buttercream In a mixer, blend butter and slowly add in powdered sugar. Once blended add in vanilla and maple and mix more until smooth.Once the cupcakes are cooled, decorate your cupcakes as you'd like and sprinkle the buttercream with some brown sugar (optional)
    Details
    Prep time: Cook time:30minsTotal time: Yield: 18 cupcakes Servings

*I use Bobs Red Mill Cake Mix for the cupcakes
Gluten Free, Dairy Free French Toast Cupcakes with Maple Buttercream

dairy free

Fiesta Spinach Dip

9:00 AM

Mexican flavor with the creamy texture of a spinach dip? 
Give me the whole bowl, please! 
Fiesta Spinach Dip - SuperBowl Party  Food, Gluten Free, Vegan - no nuts or tofu
With those Superbowl parties coming up, I'm here to make your life easier and give you an option to whip up a dip that will make people at your party happy and those with food allergies/preferences even happier!
Fiesta Spinach Dip - SuperBowl Party  Food, Gluten Free, Vegan - no nuts or tofu
 Fiesta Spinach Dip - SuperBowl Party  Food, Gluten Free, Vegan - no nuts or tofu



print recipe

Fiesta Spinach Dip
Ingredients
  • 1/2 Container of Spinach (about 3 oz)
  • 1/2 cup Dairy Free Cream Cheese
  • 1 can (about 10 oz) MILD Rotel Diced Tomatoes with green chilis
  • 1/2 Package (about 6oz) Dairy Free Mexican or Cheddar Cheese*
  • 1 TBLS Diced Jalapeno, minced (less if not a fan)
  • 5 TBLS + 1 tsp Dairy Free Sour Cream
  • 1/4 onion, finely chopped
  • 1/8 tsp cumin
  • 1/4 tsp chili powder
Instructions
In a medium to large serving bowl, mix together everything. Taste the dip and add more spices if need be. Place it in a 1 - 1.5qrt dish and cook at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes, until mixture is bubbly.Serve with your favorite tortilla chips
Details
Prep time: Cook time:30minsTotal time: Yield: 8 Servings

Notes
*Fresh Spinach is what you want to use - you can add more than 3oz if you'd like
*The recipe itself makes about a 1.5qt sized dip. If you need it for a large party, I suggest doubling the recipe.
*My husband said that it could be spicier. With that said, I suggest instead of using mild diced tomatoes, use hot. Or use some hot sauce in the recipe to your taste.
*The Dairy-Free Cream Cheese I used was Kite Hill, Sour Cream was Wayfair, and Cheese was the Mexcian blend from Daiya (as always, if you aren't dairy free/vegan you can sub out these for regular cheese products)
*I think I used more cumin and chili powder in my recipe so feel free to add more to yours as well.

I hope this makes for a great addition to your SuperBowl party! 
Or just a party in general!

dairy free

Super Easy, Party Pleasing, Avocado Dip

9:24 AM

Y'all I'm gonna keep this short and sweet. 
You need to put this on your SuperBowl Party "to make" list.
Actually, you don't need a party to enjoy this dip. Make it for yourself and enjoy!
Super Easy, Party Pleasing, Avocado Dip. Vegan and Gluten Free
This recipe is vegan as long as you can get a hold of some good vegan feta. 
Vio Life is what I use and it worked amazingly. My dad loves feta cheese and he was super into this dip. You can eat it as is or throw it over a nice bed of lettuce.
Super Easy, Party Pleasing, Avocado Dip. Vegan and Gluten Free

It's super easy to make an only requires a TAD bit of prep.



print recipe

Super Easy, Party Pleasing, Avocado Dip
Ingredients
  • 2-3 Avocados, diced
  • 1 Pint Cherry or Grape Tomatos, qaurtered
  • 6-8oz Vegan Feta*
  • 1 TBLS dried parsley
  • 1 TBLS Olive Oil
  • 1.5 TBLS Red Wine Vinigar
  • 1/2 tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 tsp onion powder
Instructions
In a medium to large serving bowl, mix together everything EXCEPT the avocado.Let the the mixture marinate in the fridge for at least an hour and half. After that or when your read to serve, add in your avacado. Serve with your favorite tortilla chips
Details
Prep time: Cook time: N/A Total time: Yield: 8Servings

*I assume you could make your own vegan feta with tofu but I'm not sure how it would taste, so your best bet is to try to find some already made vegan feta. 
Obviously if you are not vegan you can just put regular feta in this dish.
Super Easy, Party Pleasing, Avocado Dip. Vegan and Gluten Free