Caravan Sonnet: 2017

8/17/17

15 Amazing Benefits of Ginger

I first heard of ginger from my acupuncturist about a decade ago. I started using ginger (specifically for nausea during times when I would travel) but didn't know all of the amazing health benefits of consuming ginger until I did additional research. Y'all I am so amazed at the health benefits that come with consuming ginger and hope that it will inspire you to add this to your daily life! So what are all of the health benefits that ginger has? Check out these 15 amazing benefits:

1. Ginger contains gingerol which is a powerful substance with medicinal properties. Ginger has been known to not only help aid digestion and reduce nausea but also help fight the flu and common cold (as I mentioned in this post HERE!)

2. Ginger helps prevent motion sickness. As I mentioned above one of the things that I have long used ginger for is to help prevent motion sickness. There was a study done several years ago that showed that ginger was as effective (but without all of the side effects) as Dramamine! [It should be noted that many times it takes a "build up" process with ginger so if you are going to travel I would suggest using ginger for several weeks ahead of time and in addition to the time during your travel.]

3. Ginger helps reduce nausea and vomiting from chemotherapy. There have been many studies that have been done that when ginger is added to an anti nausea regime for chemotherapy that nausea and vomiting was reduced!

4. Ginger helps the body absorb essential nutrients.

5. Severe digestive issues or cramps? Ginger has been known to help digestive issues and cramps! Ginger has been found to be as effective as ibuprofen in help relieve pain from menstrual cramps in women (see #6!). Another benefit to ginger is that it may help prevent stomach ulcers which can be caused by non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. 

6. Ginger helps reduce pain. Ginger is anti-inflammatory and recent studies show that ginger has anti-inflammatory properties that may rival non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs. In a study done in 2013 on women's athletes it was found that those that took 3 grams of ginger each day had a significant decrease in muscle soreness and muscle cramps. In addition to muscles though ginger has also been found to help with migraine headaches. 

7. Ginger can help reduce nausea from morning sickness. Recent studies have shown that ginger can help reduce pregnancy-related nausea. 

8. Ginger can help Osteoarthritis. 

9. Ginger may help lower blood sugar and improve heart disease risk factors in patients. Although the studies on this are very new (just started in 2015) doctors are now saying that ginger may help diabetes and heart patients. Ginger appears to help with insulin release and insulin action in the body and helps improve lipid metabolism. Another clinical trial done recently shows that those who consumed ginger had a marked difference in many of their levels. It will be exciting to watch in years to come what future studies say about this!

10. Ginger helps improve circulation. 

11. Ginger can help inhibit certain bacteria, including Salmonella. Ginger is a great item to add to your kitchen as it an help prevent sickness due to salmonella!

12. Ginger helps fight Cancer. Due to the anti-inflammatory properties that ginger contains it is beneficial for many chronic illnesses including Cancer. A recent British study shows that Ginger can help in the effective management of certain Cancers, including prostate Cancer. Other studies have shown that it helps promote anti-tumor activity that can help treat even the difficult to treat types of Cancer. In addition to this a study that was performed at the University of Minnesota found that ginger can help slow the growth of colon Cancer cells.

13. Ginger helps reduce vertigo. Studies show that regularly consuming ginger or ginger tea can help reduce vertigo.

14. Ginger helps reduce the chance of a stroke and the damage done due to strokes. Taking ginger may help reduce the effects that a stroke can have on the body.

15. Ginger helps strengthen the immune system. Along with other wonderful foods, ginger can help improve the immune system.

While using fresh ginger is a wonderful idea, ginger can also be used dried, powdered, or even as an oil (or tea). Do you use ginger? In what form have you found it helpful? Have you found any benefits to consuming ginger?

{Disclaimer: The information included on this site is for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her health care provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a physician-patient relationship.}

8/16/17

From Hope Valley (Week 26): The Legacy of Love and Suffering

One of the sweet scenes that stood out to me in When Calls the Heart Season 2 was the conversation that took place between the widows lawyer, Samantha, and Abigail. This comment made by Samantha, a single woman to Abigail, who had lost her husband and son in the mining accident reminded me of a timeless truth for all of us to consider... the legacy of love and suffering

This past year as I watched the month of April slowly fade and we approached the month of May I have to admit that I silently groaned as my heart deeply aches. As a lady who has longed to be a mama for years and years I have to grudgingly admit that I view the month of celebrating Mother's Day with heartache. Am I deeply grateful for my precious mama? Absolutely yes. Do I rejoice with my friends who have been blessed with many children? Of course. Do I rejoice with my dear friends who have walked the road of infertility and this year celebrated becoming a mother? Absolutely. But is there a part of me that like many of my hurting friends who long to be a mommy that cries as we approach this date? Yes. Is there a part of me that wonders at how Proverbs 13:22 fits into my life? Yes. 

As I watched this scene between Samantha and Abigail I was touched by the way that the writers of the show tenderly approached this topic. I am not sure if it was purposeful or not, but it appeared to me in this scene that Samantha was thinking and referencing her own sadness in longing to be a wife and a mama. 

A few short days before Mother's Day I started thinking more deeply about the idea of "legacy", specifically the legacy that is formed in love and suffering. A dear former student contacted me the day before Mother's Day and said, "Thank you for your mother's heart that during my time in your classroom showed the joy of Christ, and watching your faith in this trial you are currently walking has shown me the steadfast hope and love only found in Christ. Your mother's heart has created a legacy of faith for me." 

To be frank I broke down and wept. My faith seems so incredibly small in this journey and I had never considered the concept before that one could leave a legacy in suffering. I always equated legacy with children, and there is a legacy that is left there to be sure. But there is also a legacy created in other seasons of life... even in suffering where we can and we will leave some kind of legacy. 

"I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."
- Romans 8:18-


The reality is that when life is destroyed all around you it is hard to trust the truth of Romans 8. When we are faced with the death of a loved one, the unanswered prayers for healing, the loss of a job, infertility, chronic pain, broken relationships, and the loss of dreams it can literally stop us in our tracks. It catches our breathe. In many ways we expect, as I did before Mother's Day this year to silently groan and cry our tears in private till the moment passes. Like me, we want to turn the pages of the calendar days quickly so that we forget the pain. And in the midst of the "helpful and sage" advice that we are given, most of us just want to dull the crushing pain and move on to "better times". Like me wanting to avoid Mother's Day, we want to "avoid" the painful times of suffering.

But what about the legacy that is found in suffering? Are we showing the world how to lovingly and faithfully walk with Jesus during the difficult days here on earth, or are we showing them that we have Jesus only to quickly make it through the painful times? Are we showing the power and miraculous God that we have despite circumstances on earth? Or are we limiting our God as we box Him in to ways that we want Him to work?

I want to suggest that the legacy of love and suffering is a beautiful thing called joy. Joy in the midst of pain. Joy in the midst of heartache. Joy, not smiles that are on our faces, but true joy found deep in the heart of Hope in a God who promises to never leave us. Sweet friends, as we cry out in our pain, let us take the risk to walk the road of suffering joyfully confident in the one who carries us each day. Be brave friends in hope with your suffering. 

Your sufferings may include a myriad of things that you want to share and discuss or they may be private heartaches that you feel that no one notices or understands. Your life and your story is unique and has purpose. Never think that your story does not have unique and noble callings to it even if it doesn't look like the way that you planned for things to look.

To each of the mamas reading this there is nothing (in my opinion) more noble than being a mama and wife, but I also know that even mamas have their own trials and stresses. To those longing to be a wife and mama your story can leave a legacy of nobility too as you wait and hope for that season in life. In each of our lives God creates a beautiful legacy out of suffering that spreads to those around you and offers redemption to the pain that we all experience here on earth. Our everlasting God who is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow is our everlasting hope, which brings joy. There is purpose in it. There is a legacy that will be formed. Your hope and longings will not be disappointed.

"And hope does not disappoint us..."
-Romans 5:5-

"A good man (or woman) leaves a legacy for his children's children."
-Proverbs 13:22-

Looking for past From Hope Valley Devotionals? You can click HERE to find a complete listing of all of the devotionals! 

I receive several emails a week asking where you can watch older episodes of "When Calls the Heart". If you have a Netflix account you can find seasons 1-3 there or you can purchase them on Amazon. You can purchase and watch all of the seasons and episodes by clicking on the links below:

*Please note that the quotes used in these weekly devotionals are the sole intellectual property of Hallmark Channel, WCTH, & Crown Media, LLC. These on-line posts are in no way supported, endorsed or affiliated with WCTH, Hallmark Channel, or Crown Media. They are simply encouragement inspired by Janette Oke and this precious show.*

8/15/17

Summer Boat Ride// Lake Champlain, Vermont

A couple of weeks ago we were able to take our first summer boat ride of the season. It was later than usual but due to all of the rain and weather we hadn't been able to go before then. The wait was worth every second. It was a beautiful day of taking the boat up into Mallotts Bay and enjoying the views.
This summer has been beautiful in so many deep and meaningful ways.
 
 
This boat ride was absolutely lovely and once again I am in awe of the beauty that surrounds this area that I love so much.
I am enjoying every moment of these last weeks of this precious summer.
Happy Tuesday friends! I hope that you are having a wonderful day!

A Few Of My Favorite Things from Zulily

Happy Tuesday friends! Today I am so excited to share a bit more about my experiences with shopping and exploring the Zulily website. To be honest I had never spent much time on Zulily before. Years ago I ordered one item off the website and then never did return to try shopping again. My experience at the time was good, but for some reason whenever I go to do some online bargain shopping, I never think immediately of Zulily. Honestly, after these last few days of looking around the website that will forever change in the future!

One of the things that surprised me the most as I browsed the Zulily website was all of the different products that were offered from such a wide variety of brands. There were tons of different brands in all of the categories- from fashion brands to house products to crafting supplies. I am confident that if you are searching for some specific things for any area of your life you could easily find what you are looking for on Zulily at a discounted rate. Each day there are thousands of new items added at 6am and this provides a fun (daily) browsing opportunity!
One my favorite items was this adorable navy dress from ModCloth. This dress originally retails for $99.99 but is available on Zulily for $37.99! I love that it is the perfect dress for the rest of the summer and is the perfect transition piece to fall and would even be perfect for some upcoming holiday parties. You can find it HERE!

It has NEVER been a secret on this blog how much I love the company Joules. So imagine my delight and surprise when I found that Zulily carries many different Joules products at a HUGE discounted rate. These rain boots are some of my favorites (remember my red pair that I love?!?)! But there tare tons of other Joules boots and products too that are available for a huge discount. You can find these rain boots HERE.
Another favorite thing that I found that I loved on the Zulily website was this cute flirty dress from ModCloth. It reminds me of the dress that Kate Middleton wore the day after her wedding as she and Prince William were walking around the palace gardens. It is so cute and I love the Indigo color! I plan on ordering this dress and taking it with me for my upcoming trip to Prince Edward Island! You can find it HERE


Two things that I ordered from the website were these scrapbook paper collections. The price was unbelievable and they will be so helpful for orders and items for the shop. You can find the BoBunny Garden Party Collection Pack HERE and the Echo Park Paper Co Fall and Family Scrapbook Paper Pads HERE. If you love scrapbooking or just have a love affair for pretty paper like I do, then Zulily has tons of crafting options to check out!

There are so many different items on Zulily that I loved and I created a board with lots of different items and some of my favorites. You can check out my board HERE! Keep checking back as I will continue to update my board with new pieces and items that I find that I love as Zulily is constantly making new items available!

What about y'all? Any favorite items from Zulily that you love?

A huge thank you to Mavenx for sponsoring this post. All opinions are my own. 

8/12/17

"I'm In Love with Cities I've Never Been to, and the People I've Never Met" Altered Travel Journal

Happy Saturday friends! Today I am so excited to share with you a cute addition to the shop! This adorable altered travel journal is now available for purchase! (You can find it HERE!) 
Ever since I was a young girl, I have always had an obsession with journaling and making things that I own pretty. I love to fill my planners with colorful, unique, whimsical, and pretty ribbons, sweet paraphernalia, and writing that speaks to my heart and that encourages me. 
Since I was a young girl my family has always loved to travel and see the world. In fact one of my earliest memories is visiting the Grand Canyon and traveling to Arizona. Growing up I was definitely inspired by seeing new places- whether they were a new town within driving distance or a new adventure across the world. 
This sense of adventure has only continued throughout my life and it is one of the things that I obviously write the most about on this blog. (You can read more of my travel adventures and stories HERE.) This quote- "I'm In Love with Cities I've Never Been to, and the People I've Never Met" fits me in absolute perfection and is one of the reasons that I have it on my travel page. I will research a new place that I am writing about or visiting and immediately I fall in love with new corners of the world.
So when I saw this journal I knew immediately that I had to create one of the shop. This altered travel journal is the perfect size and also weight- it will easily fit into your luggage or a small purse so that you can carry it with you where ever you go. It is approximately 3x5 and it is extremely lightweight.
This altered travel journal turned out so classic y'all and I loved the combination of the neutral tones of black, ivory, grays, and cream colors. In my opinion it gives a look that is timeless.
If you are interested in purchasing this altered travel journal you can find it HERE. If you are interested in looking at other altered travel journals that are available in the shop you can find them in the altered travel journals section HERE.
Happy Saturday friends! I hope that you have a wonderful day with friends and family!!

8/10/17

An Easy and Healthy Basil and Spinach Pesto Recipe

Happy Thursday friends! A couple of weeks ago I shared about how I have been eating a lot of pesto. I received a ton of emails and messages asking me for the recipe so today I wanted to share it with y'all. It is easy to make and is extremely healthy, especially if you are like me and you are wanting to get more greens into your body. 

1/4 cup organic pine nuts
1/16 cup organic walnuts
1 and 1/2 cups organic basil
1/2 cup organic spinach
2 tablespoons organic olive oil
1-2 tablespoons of lemon juice
1 tablespoon water
1/4 tsp salt (you can add more if you like more salt)
1/4 tsp pepper

Blend together in a food processor and chill in refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before serving. We have found that letting it sit overnight is the best. We use the Hamilton Beach 12-cup stack and snap food processor that we purchased on Amazon. You can find it HERE. It is wonderful. It is easy to use and easy to clean!

I use this as a dip with veggies, on sandwiches as a substitute for mayo, as a garnish for fish, etc. It takes about 5 minutes to make and is the easiest recipe. 

It is also extremely healthy. There are so many health benefits to pine nuts, walnuts, spinach and basil. You can read about all of the health benefits of basil HERE. I have also substituted in different greens besides spinach including kale and dandelion greens. The recipe is so easy and can be modified for your health needs.

What about y'all? What is your favorite pesto recipe?

8/9/17

44 Tips to Have a Happy Marriage for 48 Years

These kiddos above{aka my parents} are celebrating their 48th wedding anniversary today. In today's society that would be classified as amazing, but to this single gal it is not only amazing, it is inspirational, entirely possible, and beautiful to have witnessed such an amazing love story growing up. 

In honor of their anniversary four years ago I shared a post entitled "44 tips to have a happy marriage for 44 years" that has remained one of my most popular posts. Today, in honor of their anniversary I wanted to re-share these 44 tips with you about having a marriage that will not only go the distance, but will be a beautiful story that I have learned from them.
1. Have a marriage centered on Jesus. 

2. Laugh. A lot.
3. Realize what is important and let everything else go. 

4. If your marriage is in trouble seek help.

5. Go on dates - at least once a week. (Don't have money for a date? My parents don't either and are constantly being creative with what to do. Look for free events in your area (i.e.- events at a local college, high school, church, etc.), pack a picnic lunch or dinner, go for a walk in a new park that you have not explored, etc.)
6. Be creative.

7. Be intentional.
8. Don't ever go to bed angry.

9. Fight fairly (stick to the subject at hand).

10. Listen. Listen. Listen.
11. Put the other person first. 

12. Always remember that life is found in the little moments. 
13. Never give your spouse the chance to wonder if you are cheating. 

14. Do not ever let pornography become a substance in your house. 

15. Never let children divide you and never speak ill of your spouse to your children.

16. Never let the "D" word (divorce) be uttered. The minute that you allow that you start down a road that you do not want to go on. 

17. Pray together.
18. Go to church together. 

19. Have Godly friends who you can encourage you along the way. 

20. Recognize that life (and marriage is hard). 
21. Respect him ladies. 

22. Love her completely gentleman.

23. Celebrate the big moments. 
24. Rejoice with each others successes. 
25. Support each other. 
26. Understand his job. 

27. Love her hearts passions. 

28. Understand security is very important for a woman. 
29. Take time to talk everyday. (Maybe this means shutting off the TV or turning off the internet - do whatever needs to be done to talk everyday!)
30. If you watch TV, watch TV you both enjoy. 

31. Dance in the house
32. Turn off the phone, internet, blackberry, ipad, computer, etc.. 

33. Enjoy each others presence.
34. Kiss often. 

35. Never hang up the phone or leave without saying "I love you".

36. Live life knowing how short it is. 
37. Realize that after you have kids you will still be a couple so don't wait eighteen years to keep falling more in love. 

38. Never stop flirting. 

39. Hold hands whenever possible. 
40. Cook for her, clean up for her, do the wash, etc.- Find something she hates to do and do it for her often without being asked. 

41. Ladies, don't nag. 

42. Find out something he loves to do and encourage it to the fullest. 

43. Cry together, not with your friends, or brushing it off. Face life together. 

44. Remember that life is fleeting and in the end the only thing that matters is love. 
Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad! I love you guys so much!

From Hope Valley (Week 25): The Beautiful Hope of Finding Courage

One of the sweet aspects of When Calls the Heart Season 2 was having the opportunity to watch the interactions between Elizabeth and her family. There were some silly dramatic moments like the one above between Julie and Elizabeth, but even this exchange between the two sisters in the 5th episode of Season 2, shows a timeless truth for all of us to consider... the beautiful hope of finding courage.

When I watched this scene the first time I giggled a bit, along with lots of viewers I am sure, but as I sat down to write this chapter I started to think about the depth of what is conveyed here. Often times there are situations that we encounter in life that if something doesn't go the way that we want it to we feel we will "wither away and die" as Julie says. When Elizabeth points out that she won't die, Julie aptly responds that she will still "wither". Now, the scene is humorous and every woman I am sure can relate to the concept that was originally being discussed in this conversation, yet there is a deeper truth that is here that goes beyond the laughter.

Often times (and I am just as guilty of this as anyone) it can seem that circumstances can make us feel that we will "wither". I have been thinking a lot about this recently. There are several particular circumstances in my life where I want to be like Julie and say, "if this doesn't work this way than I will wither and die... okay not die, but I will wither". It sounds humorous but in reality I think a lot of times we all feel this way. We may never express it or be as dramatic, but in a lot of situations in our lives we live without the beautiful hope of finding courage.

Instead of having courage, we do wither. Instead of facing situations head on with bravery and hope, we assume the worst will happen. Instead of believing that the best things are to come, we assume that the worst will take place. Instead of living hopefully and securely knowing that we are prisoners of hope, we often live in fear of what may happen in a particular circumstance. 

I was recently talking with a dear friend who has gone through a lot in her young life. She and I spoke for a few hours the other day as she talked through several difficult and daunting situations that she is facing. She grew quiet at the end of the conversation and I asked her what she was thinking about. She admitted with tears running down her cheeks, "I have realized as we have talked I don't have any courage or hope to face these situations. I assume the worst case scenario will always happen in my life." My heart broke for her and as we continued to talk I had to admit that I also sometimes feel the same way.

It can be easy in life to allow what we see and the circumstances in front of us to dictate the thought that we will wither under what is before us. It can be easy to believe that relationships that we long to see healed will always stay broken. It is easier to believe that our financial issues will never get better. It is easier to believe that we may never have the child or family we long for. It is easier to believe that our best days were behind us. It is easier to believe that when everyone is saying there is no hope, that there isn't. It is often easier to believe in the fear of what may go wrong instead of the truth of finding courage. 

But here is the thing. There is a certain blessing that can only come from courage. There is a deep blessing of living fully in the hope that we don't wither when circumstances that we never expected face us. There is a beautiful blessing that comes as we live not being dismayed, not worrying, but having courage to face everything in front of us. There is a beautiful blessing that is indescribable that only comes from choosing to have courage. The English Author, C.S. Lewis once said, "Courage, dear heart"... and this is what we all sometimes need to be gently and firmly reminded of.

There is a beautiful hymn from 1898 entitled "Higher Ground" which was written by Johnson Oatman, Jr. who had felt that his life was nowhere near what he had envisioned or dreamed. The limits of his ministry and his commitments had him "locked" into a situation that didn't allow him to change the direction. As he continued to pray and seek God's will for his life and pray for miracles, he lived in hope that someday the Lord would answer his prayers. After many years of prayers and tears, at 36 years old his prayers were answered when he found that he had a love and a gift for writing hymns. One of his most popular ones that is said to be one of his favorites, is "Higher Ground". There is a section in the song that I believe speaks beautifully to this hope of finding courage. The words say:

"My heart has no desire to stay
Where doubts arise and fears dismay;
Though some may dwell where those abound, 
My prayer, may aim, is higher ground."

Today, let us dare to live courageously. Today, let us not let our hearts stay where doubts arise or fears dismay. Today let us face the situations in front of us with strength. Everyone around you may be speaking doubts and fears into your situation, but let us make it our prayer and aim to not live there. Today, let us speak hope and courage into every situation that we hear of. Today let us find the joy and hope ... and today let us find the blessing that comes with living a life a courage.

"The grass withers... but the word of our God will stand forever."
-Isaiah 40:8-

"...Be strong and courageous! Do not tremble or be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go."
-Joshua 1:9-

Did you see Brian Bird's announcement in the Facebook group about his upcoming devotional, entitled "When God Calls the Heart, Devotionals From Hope Valley"? It is available for pre-order from Amazon HERE and will be released in February. Click HERE for information and to purchase it! 

Looking for past From Hope Valley Devotionals? You can click HERE to find a complete listing of all of the devotionals! 

I receive several emails a week asking where you can watch older episodes of "When Calls the Heart". If you have a Netflix account you can find seasons 1-3 there or you can purchase them on Amazon. You can purchase and watch all of the seasons and episodes by clicking on the links below:

*Please note that the quotes used in these weekly devotionals are the sole intellectual property of Hallmark Channel, WCTH, & Crown Media, LLC. These on-line posts are in no way supported, endorsed or affiliated with WCTH, Hallmark Channel, or Crown Media. They are simply encouragement inspired by Janette Oke and this precious show.*

8/8/17

4 Tips for Enjoying Animal Kingdom with a Chronic Illness

As I look back on the exciting opportunity that I had of spending time at Disney with my friends in July, I am truly speechless with gratitude over this beautiful opportunity. We had such an amazing time eating yummy food, visiting Epcot and Magic Kingdom, spending an afternoon at Animal Kingdom, and watching the Happily Ever After Fireworks show. The day was absolutely magical in every sense of the way. 

At the same time though, I have traveled enough while I have been fighting for my health to know that you don't "leave" your sick body and automatically get a "new one" so it is important to understand and prepare ahead of time for any trip when you are chronically ill. Traveling takes a risk and a courage- especially when you don't feel well. If you haven't struggled with a chronic or long term illness the idea of traveling perhaps sounds strange or foreign. You might even question why people do this if they "feel so sick". I can't answer for everyone but for me I push myself to do it (knowing that there will be side-effects while I am gone and especially when I come back) because I want to live despite being sick. I want to grab onto life and experience it. I want to grab onto experiences and live bigger than my world of illness allows. 
 So if you are taking that risk... if you are stepping out and grabbing onto life in a new way and are going for a visit to Disneyworld while you are ill I applaud you. I applaud you for any small or big steps you are taking as you heal. If you are looking for extra tips for your trip I shared a post last year entitled 10 Tips for Enjoying Disneyworld with a Chronic Illness  that may be helpful to read. Today I wanted to share 4 Tips specifically related to enjoying Animal Kingdom with a chronic illness and hope that these will help you in your next adventure!
1. Plan your Meal Times Ahead of Time
If part of your Chronic Illness includes a special diet (like myself) you will want to research ahead of time which restaurants are allergen friendly. One of the great things about Animal Kingdom is the choices of "allergen friendly" restaurants and options that they have. One of my favorites in the park is Satu'li' Canteen which I shared a bit about in my post HERE, but it was definitely a great pick for those who have a chronic illness for a few specific reasons: 
1. Many "spoonies" like myself try to eat a healthy diet and this place offers tons of different and yummy health options. You can see the menu HERE

2. For those who have lots of dietary restrictions like myself, this place is a perfect solution for everyone. One of the things that I most appreciated about our experience here was that when I asked one of the staff members a question about one of my allergies she immediately pulled out an allergy friendly map that explained in detail every menu item and if it would be "dietary appropriate" for those who have a myriad of allergies (including dairy, corn, wheat, egg, etc.). This made it incredibly easy to choose something yummy and safe within my dietary restrictions without making a big production of anything. 


3. I have to say that one of the things that I mentioned in my post, 10 Tips for enjoying Disney With a Chronic Illness, was the weather and heat factor. For some that are struggling with a chronic illness heat is extremely difficult and Satu'li' Canteen is an air conditioned restaurant (something that is typically only reserved for the more expensive restaurants in the Disney parks) and a sit-down restaurant. Satu'li' Canteen offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner options and is located in the new Pandora section of Animal Kingdom. 

If you are needing special assistance with figuring out dietary issues within animal kingdom you can call ahead of time or place your order on-line. You can find out more about this by clicking HERE. If you have questions and want to discuss several things you can email the Special Dietary staff who will be happy to help you. You can find out their contact information by clicking HERE
2. Plan a Route
One of the best tips if you are trying to conserve energy to enjoy as much as you can is to plan out a route using the "My Disney Experience App" or just by studying a map. The "My Disney Experience App" can is a huge help with planning out a route for your time in Animal Kingdom and helps keep you up-to-date on wait times and fast pass information. You can find out more about the app by clicking HERE
3. Stay with Your Group as Much as Possible
One of the things that I really enjoyed at Animal Kingdom was having the opportunity to hang out with my friends up till the moment that they got on a ride that I couldn't ride. When we arrived in Asia in Animal Kingdom we waited in line for Everst which Ali and Paul rode and really enjoyed. I wasn't able to ride due to health reasons, but this didn't make me wait outside. I see this happen a lot, but Animal Kingdom is really great about this. They encourage you to spend time with your loved ones and you can easily exit (without having to go back through the whole line) when your party goes to get on a ride. I know that at some theme parks this isn't an option, but at Animal Kingdom it is, and is wonderful that you don't miss out on time with people. Honestly, I love how this allowed me the opportunity to spend every second with these dear people. 
4. Enjoy the Shows and Presentations
One of the unique parts of Animal Kingdom is the pletheora of shows and presentations that are available to the visitor. From Broadway caliber shows like The Lion King to talks about different animals there are numerous things to see and learn. For a lot of "spoonies" this can be a wonderful gift as it can give you a chance to sit down and rest a bit while you and your group are enjoying these things.

If you are looking for additional tips for enjoying Disney with a Chronic Illness you can find my post 10 Tips for Enjoying Disneyworld with a Chronic Illness  by clicking HERE.

Again, a huge thank you to Disney for making this trip possible. You truly gave a day of perfection and magic and inspiration. I can't wait to go back to Disney again. Thank you again so very much. If you are interested in reading more about the trip you can click on one of the links below:


What about you? What tips do you have for enjoying Animal Kingdom with a Chronic Illness?
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A huge thank you to Disneyworld for the tickets for us to enjoy the park and for me to have the opportunity to write about my different experiences. It was a gift that was beyond beautiful!