Author Archives: Andi Perullo de Ledesma

About Andi Perullo de Ledesma

I am Andi Perullo de Ledesma, a Chinese Medicine Doctor and Travel Photojournalist in Charlotte, NC. I am also wife to Lucas and mother to Joaquín. Follow us as we explore life and the world one beautiful adventure at a time.

Jersey Shore

Where To Bike Along The Jersey Shore

The New Jersey Shore offers some of the most breathtaking views and interesting bike trails in the country. Whether you are an avid cyclist or finding ebikes for teens to get your entire family interested in cycling, finding a trail that you will love along the shoreline will not be hard at all.

Check Out The Famous Atlantic City Boardwalk Trail

The Atlantic City Boardwalk starts at Absecon Inlet on the north end of the city and spans four miles until it reaches Longport. Because the boards were added diagonally, the boardwalk provides a smooth ride for bikers. While some people choose to rent bikes, others have their own adult electric bike that they ride. The area also offers several bike shops should you need new accessories along the way.

Riding a bike on the boardwalk takes some planning. The area only permits bikes during certain hours of the day, so it is important to know that bikes often aren’t permitted from late morning to late afternoon due to the number of pedestrians that are on the boardwalk.

The boardwalk is home to a wide variety of attractions, including restaurants, bars, museums, casinos, and plenty of shopping destinations. Spend time at Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Museum, visit the Absecon Lighthouse, stop for food and drinks at Margaritaville, or simply spend the morning breathing in the fresh salt air while you ride. 

The Long And Beautiful Cape May Shoreline Ride

The Cape May Shoreline Ride is perhaps the best bike ride in New Jersey. Grab your beach cruise bike women’s 26 and explore nearly 50 miles of lighthouses, beaches, and the Cape May Peninsula. Along the way, you will find the Stone Harbor Bird Sanctuary, the Cape May Nature Center, and a wide variety of other attractions. A zoo, several convention centers, and Sunset Pavilion are other attractions that are dotted across the ride.

If you would like to ride the entire loop, you may want to take an overnight break afterward. An excellent place to do that is at the Southern Mansion. Located just a short drive from the shoreline in Wildwood, the 1.5-acre property features award-winning gardens and is located in the area’s historic district. Built in 1860, the mansion features authentic Victorian-themed rooms that are perfect for a romantic getaway. 

Spend Time On The Edgar Felix Memorial Bikeway

Located in Monmouth County, the Edgar Felix Memorial Bikeway is nearly 3.5 miles long while still not too far from the shoreline. The perfect trail for people who like variety on their bike rides, it takes riders through a range of residential neighborhoods and deep forests before ending at Allaire State Park. Once you reach the park, lock up your bike and spend time hiking the trails or visit the Historic Village at Allaire. The 19th-century home is a living history museum. Overnight campsites are also available. 

From the ever-popular Atlantic City Boardwalk to the deep forests of the Edgar Felix Memorial Bikeway, there is something for everyone in the state of New Jersey. Grab your bike, some snacks, and some music, then spend the day exploring your favorite trails.

Motherhood

Taking Care Of Yourself During Pregnancy And Post-Partum

If you have decided to bring a little one into the world, you are about to embark on one of life’s biggest journeys. Becoming a parent completely changes the dynamics of your day to day life and you will quickly find that you become completely responsible for someone else and their wellbeing. You will need to adapt every element of your lifestyle to cater to their needs and put them first. But it is important that during this time you look after yourself too. Looking after yourself will maximize your ability to look after your child and you also need to remember that you’re important too. Here is some information that will help you to achieve this during pregnancy and postpartum.

Self-Care During Pregnancy

Let us start with caring for yourself during pregnancy. This is a period of time where your body will undergo drastic change. From change in shape and weight to hormonal fluctuations, cravings, energy levels, swelling and so much more, you are in for a ride over the next nine months. It really is important to look after yourself in various ways during this time. Here are some steps to take to achieve this:

  • Your Diet

You need to make sure that you are eating a healthy and balanced diet for the sake of both yourself and your baby. Remember, your baby benefits from the nutrients you eat, so it is time to get plenty of vitamins and minerals into your system. You also need to make sure to eat well to give yourself energy and the fuel you need to power your body through each day. It is important to be aware of foods that you should avoid during pregnancy too. There are foods that you may usually eat, but that may make you ill or impact your baby’s development when you are pregnant. First, and perhaps best known, is alcohol. You should avoid alcohol at all costs throughout the duration of your pregnancy, as it can damage your child or see them born with an alcohol dependency. There are also certain food products that you should avoid too Foods such as soft cheeses with white rinds, including as brie and camembert, should be avoided, as they can cause sickness. For the same reason, you should also avoid eating mould-ripened soft goat’s cheeses, such as chevre and soft, blue-veined cheeses, which also have a chance of infecting you with listeria. Another food to avoid is raw or partially cooked eggs, as these can carry salmonella, a form of food poisoning. Pate is another suspect to cut out — both meat and vegetable pates — as they run the risk of listeria infection too. Finally, you should not touch any raw meat or fish or forms of fish like swordfish, shark or marlin.

  • Posture

Practicing good posture can make all the difference to your comfort levels when you are pregnancy. As you make your way through the second and third trimesters, you will find that your bump grows larger and heavier and you may experience problems with your back or managing the weight. Practicing good posture can help with this. While posture is important in day to day life for everyone, it is particularly important for pregnant people. Here are some suggestions that can help:

Good Posture While Standing:

  • Keep your head held up straight
  • Tuck in your chin
  • Centre your head – align your earlobes to the middle of your shoulders
  • Pull your shoulder blades back
  • Push your chest forward
  • Avoid locking your knees
  • Keep your buttocks tucked in
  • Avoid tilting your pelvis forward or back
  • Balance your weight evenly over both feet
  • Avoid standing for extended periods of time

Good Posture While Sitting:

  • Keep your buttocks towards the back of the chair
  • Keep your back as straight as possible
  • Place a pregnancy pillow at the lumbar of your back for support

Good Posture While Sleeping:

Chances are, you have seen plenty of people using pregnancy pillows while sleeping. It is a good idea to invest in one of these, as they can be moved around while you rest to properly support your body in various places. They increase comfort and support your body at the same time. You should also, of course, avoid rolling onto your front in your sleep, and may want to avoid sleeping on your back, as this can place pressure on your body.

Self Care Post-Pregnancy

It’s also important to care for yourself once the baby is born. Sure, you may want to direct all of your attention to your new arrival, but if you fail to look after yourself and become sick or burnt out, you are not going to be able to provide them with the best care that you can. Self-care following birth really is mutually beneficial for both you and the baby. Here are some top self-care tips:

  • Post-Natal Recovery

Birth is an arduous and difficult task that can cause major damage to your body. It is important to discuss your condition with your doctor and to gain advice regarding how to best care for your body while it heals. They may recommend wearing post-natal pads to soak up blood or other fluids following birth. They may also have used stitches which you will need to schedule to be taken out, or need to change dressings on caesarean section scars. Your doctor will be able to provide tailored advice to meet your needs.

  • Mental Health

It is also essential that you manage and consider your mental health following birth. There will  have been a lot of hormonal change in your body during this process and you need to make sure that you seek out the advice you need if you feel that you are struggling as a new parent. Post natal depression is more common than you would think, but there is treatment out there that can support you through this period, ranging from therapists to medication, support groups, helplines and more. Down the line, you may begin to find issues with self-image, due to your body changing as a cause of pregnancy and birth. Your doctor may recommend therapy or guide you through the process of breast augmentation, tummy tucks or other procedures that can help further.

  • Sleep

New parents notoriously struggle with sleep. While you should get eight hours a night, the average new parent fails to achieve this, as babies are restless and will wake throughout the day and night for feeding, comfort, entertainment or changes. Now, this can be difficult to resolve, as your baby’s behavior will not change until they are older. Instead, you need to find ways of getting sleep that work for you. For some people, this means calling in the help of others, such as trusted friends or relatives or professional childminders. This provides the parent with some time to get some rest while someone else trusted takes care of their little one. If you have a partner, some will choose to do shifts, with one caring for the baby one night and one caring for the bay the other. Another good method is to sleep when your baby sleeps. Sure, this may be at inconvenient times, but it is good to rest wherever you can.

As you can see, there really is a lot to take into account when it comes to properly caring for yourself throughout the process of pregnancy and following giving birth. These suggestions just scratch the surface! Hopefully, a few will benefit you in the long run!

Party people

Four Of The Unmissable Shows In Gatlinburg, Tennessee

If you plan on traveling this year, you should consider taking some vacation time in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. It is right next to Pigeon Forge, and together, they present some reasonably-priced family fun that’s hard to resist. You can head there with the family if you can take some time off from work.

While you are there, you can go for romps in the woods since the Great Smoky Mountains tower majestically over the town. You can eat at the family-style restaurants and visit the Dolly Parton Museum with her many fabulous outfits and other memorabilia.

Aside from that, most people know Gatlinburg for the shows and revues that occur every day of the week. You will have to choose which ones you’ll want to see, though, and we have come up with some top contenders we will talk about now.

Pirates Voyage Dinner and Show

Some of the best shows in Gatlinburg, TN, involve pirates. It seems like pirates were all the rage for a few years because of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie series. 

Even though a new installment from that series has not come out in a few years now, you might still have some kids in your family who love swashbuckling adventures. You may have a soft spot for them yourself.

If so, the Pirates Voyage Dinner and Show should be on your radar as you get ready to visit Gatlinburg. It takes place indoors, but all the action happens in an artificial, 15-foot indoor lagoon.

The pirates cross swords, fly through the air, and engage in nonsensical wordplay. It is not exactly Shakespeare, but it is a fun way to kill a couple of hours. The crackling pan-friend chicken is the show’s star, though you will likely enjoy the buccaneer biscuit as well, a Southern staple.

Steven’s Best Unbelievable Magic Shows Pigeon Forge, TN

Magic never goes out of style, as artists like Criss Angel and Penn and Teller prove with their long-running acts. Steven’s Best Unbelievable Magic Shows last about an hour-and-a-half, with an intermission. They are recommended by esteemed personages such as David Hasselhoff and Robin Leach.

The show features card tricks, rabbits popping out of hats, and the other usual fare. Even though it seems like you would have no trouble deciphering how Steven does his thing, you will likely have a hard time explaining to your kids how he conjures objects out of midair and makes other ones disappear. Is it magic? All signs point to yes.

Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Show

Steven’s Magic Shows do not come with dinner, which is one point against them. You will get food and fun with the Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Show, though, one of the most high-energy and overall craziest shows Gatlinburg has to offer.

The real Hatfield and McCoy feud was a tragic affair, but it bears little resemblance to this farcical outing. The actors hoot, holler, and engage in dance-offs, while you and the family enjoy fare like open-pit pulled pork BBQ, famous feuding fried chicken, creamy vegetable soup, and more.

You can ask for gluten-free and vegetarian meals if you like, and the venue has handicapped seating options. You can take pictures of the action to post on social media later, as long as it is non-flash photography.

Elvis and the Superstars Pigeon Forge

It is hard to go anywhere in the south and find someone who does not appreciate the king. Elvis Presley had his detractors, but he is pretty much worshipped in these parts. You can certainly go to Graceland or Las Vegas to get an idea of what this celebrated crooner embodied, but Gatlinburg does a pretty passable impression of him with the Elvis and the Superstars Pigeon Forge show.

You get songs from the king himself, of course, but also some from Willy Nelson and Dolly Parton impersonators. Maybe all the actors portraying them did not imagine this particular career for themselves, but then again, perhaps they could not be happier with the work they do. They certainly belt out the hits with a lot of gusto, and the venue has handicap access as well.

They have a single show per day, unlike some of the other revues, which often feature an afternoon and evening performance. The event lasts about ninety minutes. You get no food with this one, so keep that in mind and eat before you arrive.

We will give the Biblical Times Dinner Theater an honorable mention, as well as the Marriage Can Be Murder Mystery Dinner Show, perfect for a marriage on the rocks.  

London, England

Five Must-Haves On Your London Summer Holiday Bucket List

London is an incredible city all year round, but summer is the best time for residents and tourists. The city comes alive in the season, with crowded hangouts in local markets, pop-ups, outdoor cinemas, and rooftop bars. It also hosts some famous events during the summer months. Whether you live in the city or are here for a holiday, the options in summer activities promise to spoil you for choice. Tourists from around the world plan summer holidays, because they have a chance to see and experience the best London has to offer. Here are a few must-haves for your holiday bucket list when landing in the city in summer. 

Plan a picnic at Hyde Park

Summer in London is not complete without a picnic at Hyde Park, the biggest in the city. It is the favorite hangout spot for residents, but tourists love it alike. You can experience the summer vibes of London here as families flock for games and picnics. The park is the venue for music festivals such as British Summer Time. You can enjoy film screenings and sporting events on big screens at the venue. Grab your chance to taste the best at pop-up food festivals while you are here.

Attend the Notting Hill Carnival

The famous Notting Hill Carnival is the best thing to do in the city if you are here during the August Bank Holiday Weekend. The vibrant street festival celebrates the Caribbean culture with a thrilling parade through the West London neighborhoods. You have the option to watch the parade or be a part of it. The venue offers delicious Caribbean dishes from food trucks along the parade routes. 

See your favorites in action at Wimbledon

Summer is also about Wimbledon in this part of the world. Not surprisingly, tennis fans from all over fly to the destination during tennis’ biggest celebration. Expect to struggle for Wimbledon Championships Tickets because of the crowds, but debenture tickets make it easy to get in. You can spot royals and celebrities in the courts and relish strawberries and cream in the ground. The experience promises to be an unforgettable one!

Watch a movie on the Thames

Watching a movie while gliding along the Thames is another must-have for your summer bucket list while traveling to London. Time Out’s movie boat starts at the Tower of London and promises the best movie experience. Combine it with a beautiful sunset, and you have a perfect recipe for an unforgettable evening. So just sit back and enjoy the show. 

Check the Chelsea Flower Show

The famous Chelsea Flower Show brings together the world’s top landscape designers competing to build the best flower gardens. The event is hosted by the Royal Horticultural Society on the Royal Hospital Chelsea grounds. You can see the flowers and get some valuable gardening advice from pros. The event also hosts presentations on unique topics like the power of plant healing.

A summer trip to London is worth its price, so pick the right time of the year to plan your vacation. Ensure to check all these places on your bucket list.

Wedding Flowers

Seven Tips For Choosing Your Wedding Flowers

In a wedding, flowers are more than just centerpieces. They adorn the entourage, add elegance to your venue, and symbolize a bride’s beauty as she carries her bouquet down the aisle. They set the mood of your big day and add to the lasting memories.

Before you embark on the task of choosing your wedding flowers, below are some tips that are worth taking note of:

  1. Do Your Research Beforehand

As you prepare for your big day, you may be frequenting online blogs for bridal looks inspo. One thing you cannot miss is the presence of flowers everywhere — from the venue to the bridal gown itself. They have always been a wedding staple, as they symbolize the love, beauty, and purity of marriage.

Before you meet with your florist and choose the flowers you will use in your wedding, do your part by researching ahead. Check out the different types of flowers, their meanings, fragrances, and arrangements. This way, it will be easier to discuss your choices with your florist in detail. 

  1. Create A Budget

For proper and effective planning, every single item in your wedding should be budgeted for, and that includes flowers. You may be surprised that they eat up a big chunk of your wedding budget. Whether you go for pricey varieties or the more affordable, beautiful dahlias, creating a budget will help you decide on the kind and number of flowers you’ll use for your wedding.

A bigger flower budget can accommodate a variety and more elaborate flower designs, but a cost-effective one may warrant careful choices. No matter what you go for, either way, stick to your budget. 

  1. Hire A Florist

You may feel confident enough to handle your flower issues after acquiring some knowledge when doing your research. But acquired knowledge may only go as far as knowing flower names, colors, and shades. There are finer details that a professional florist sees and handles. 

Experienced florists know what goes with what and where. They know how to mix colors to blend with your wedding environment and what flowers will fit your wedding theme. They also know exactly where to source the best flowers. Hire a florist as soon as you begin your wedding plans.

Do not forget to mention any flowers that may have sentimental value for you, as these can be incorporated into your wedding as well.

  1. Colors

Your wedding flowers should complement or match your color scheme. Using a color palette will have more character than using a single color. For instance, instead of just going with one shade of blue, mix different shades and add a few other colors that either compliment or contrast the color to make the flowers interesting. Play with different colors depending on your color theme to see what works best for you.

  1. Use Flowers In Season

You may be fixated on using certain types of flowers for your wedding because they hold sentimental meaning, or they are your favorite, or you feel that they blend in perfectly with your wedding theme. But you forget that flowers are seasonal and that your choice may not be available during the season you plan on walking down the aisle. If flowers are important to you, you can set your wedding date to coincide with the season when your preferred flowers will be in season, or you can settle for alternative lookalikes that are available in that season. The good thing, however, about using wedding flowers in season is that they’ll be less costly and be easily available.

  1.  Do Not Just Describe, Show

Your big day can be ruined when you have a moment of ‘what you ordered versus what you got.’ This is because there may have been a misunderstanding regarding what your florist thought you meant and what you really meant. Some flowers look alike. To avoid such a situation, go and point out to your florist exactly what you want rather than just describing it. Many florists send updates to their clients leading up to the wedding day. Ask if your florist can provide that service as well.

  1. Choose Flowers That Match Your Theme

It is important to use flowers that match your wedding theme. For instance, you can use white orchids for a glamorous wedding, daisies for a beach wedding, and peonies for a fairytale wedding. Sophisticated flowers suit city weddings, but their wild counterparts are preferred for country weddings.

Conclusion

Flowers have the power to transform your wedding venue and bring life to your big day. They are an important choice you should pay attention to as you plan your wedding. Make your special day colorful by using the above tips to choose your wedding flowers.