If You’re Going to Splurge, Get a Nice Hotel

If You’re Going to Splurge While Traveling, Stay Somewhere Comfortable

When I used to travel somewhere new, I used to believe that it would be exciting to get out and experience everything this place had to offer. And, while that is still true to an extent, I have come to realize that travel is more about experience, it’s about personal reflection and slowing down.

How many times have you travelled to another country or city (on business or pleasure) thinking that it was going to be an unforgettable experience? You went out whenever you could and were constantly on the go. Sure, it was fun most of the time, but what happened when you got home? You were exhausted! It took you over a week to recover from whatever the heck you did to yourself while you were out of town!

First Step, Get a Nice Room

In order to truly enjoy your time away, you have to be comfortable with the accommodations you chose. You’re not going to be wanting to spend your entire trip out and about and coming back to a bed and private space is just as important. So, instead of buying the cheapest hotel you can find, book a nice one that you’ll enjoy spending time in. This means going for the pool, nice hotel restaurant, and good location.

Or Better Yet, Get a Nice Apartment

If you’re travelling for longer stretches of time, hotels might not do quite the trick. And there’s no doubt that more options are becoming widely available for finding the right place to stay. The popularity of sites like AirBnB provide alternative accommodations that often provide more of the luxuries of a home at a fraction of the price of a deck out hotel suite. Local rental sites are becoming popular as well and provide opportunities to rent apartments or condos for short term stays in cities across Canada.

Find a Way to Enjoy It

When you’re at home, what are you doing most of the time? I suspect the answer to this question isn’t “sitting down”. Nope, when you’re at home, there are constantly things to do and places to be. Hardly ever do you get any time to yourself! Now that you’re away from home, take some time to enjoy yourself. If you like to read the newspaper, go make a purchase and head to the living area of your beautiful room and actually sit and read it. Heck, if you feel so inclined, solve the crossword puzzle while you’re at it!

If you’re anything like me, you probably have a stack of magazines that you’ve always meant to read, but never had the time for. You know what? Now’s the time. Turn on some music, get out your magazines and relax. Once you get home, instead of being dreadfully tired or exhausted, you’ll be refreshed and ready for any challenges that life might soon bring. Enjoy that time away from home and you won’t regret that you did.

Ideas for Edible Landscaping

Often, we think of landscaping and food gardening as two different activities. However, to the creative gardener, there is plenty of room for overlap. There are a great many lovely plants that also happen to be edible.

As you plan your yard this spring, and consider what to plant, consider edible landscaping. Here are some ideas:

Edible Flowers

Many of us know that dandelion leaves can make a great addition to a salad. Unfortunately, no matter how pretty your kids think dandelions are, they aren’t considered a viable part of a good-looking landscape. But there are plenty of other edible flowering plants you can use. Some of my favorites include basil, thyme, chives, coriander and rosemary, which are herbs (and I like to dry for use during the winter).

Other options include carnation, borage, fennel, rose hips, violas, nasturtiums, and some varieties of geranium (not all). I also like growing Russian sage. It smells good and looks distinctive. However, it’s important to note that the leaves aren’t edible, while the flowers are.

Edging and Ground Cover

The smaller herbs also make great ground covers and edging plants. Thyme is especially useful as a ground cover, as is oregano and chamomile. I also like using strawberries. They make great ground cover, and the flowers are pretty and the berries delicious. Plus, the color change in the leaves makes strawberries a fun ground cover during the fall. Lingonberries also make for good ground cover. Sweet potatoes can also provide attractive ground cover (lovely flowers and ivy-like leaves), and the leaves are also edible.

Rhubarb (if you like that sort of thing) can also make a great edging plant. Lettuce is also a good edging plant. There are many different varieties of lettuce; choose those that are red, purple, or deep green. These varieties of lettuce look pretty, and have more nutrients than the iceberg lettuce.

Other edging choices can include cauliflower, garlic, turnips, and beans. It you want, you can even plant red or purple cabbage to add a dramatic look to your landscaping.

Trellis Planting

Adding a trellis to your yard can be a pretty touch. Rather than planting mainly decorative plants, though, think about how you can use vining plants. Many varieties of peas and beans have beautiful leaves and vines, and will grow on a trellis. Interestingly, you can also get cucumbers, some melons, and some varieties of squash to grow vertically, and these can add a great deal to your lanscape.

Privacy

Our neighbors across the street are growing raspberries as a privacy hedge, rather than building a fence. You can use such fruiting bushes as a privacy planting. As long as you keep them trimmed properly, raspberries and blackberries (watch out; raspberries and blackberries can poison each other) can make great — and tasty — fences. Your neighbors probably won’t mind as long as they can harvest the fruit on their side.

When planning your landscape, think about edible plants. There are plenty of edible plants, as well as fruits and vegetables that are attractive. Plan your landscape as a garden, and you’ll save money and eat well.