Vacationing In The Ocean State: Sleeps & Eats

Where We Stayed: Warren, Rhode Island.

We rented a three bedroom, two bathroom townhouse in Warren, RI (about 20 minutes from Providence) with my parents. We found the rental on VRBO and were very pleased with our accommodations. The townhouse was located on the top two floors of a a three story historic home and it over looked the water.  It was wonderful because it had two balconies and a deck where we were able to sit out and relax, enjoy a cup of coffee and take advantage of the grill. The townhouse was so beautiful and Neil and I really wanted to just move in, we loved the layout and the location.

We also stayed an extra night at the Hilton Providence which was in a good location (downtown Providence) but we were less than impressed with the accommodations. I am not sure if it was because we had a baby and they worried she would be loud but when we checked in they said they were going to move us to a higher floor and we ended up being in a room across from the ice machine and on a floor with younger (rowdy) adults and lots of little kids. The bed was comfortable but it was so noisy!

Where We Ate:

We actually picked up a bunch of groceries from Whole Foods and Trader Joes and ate the majority of our meals at the house.  The few meals we did eat out included:

  • Kabob and Curry (take out): One of the nights we picked up Indian take out to enjoy at the house.  It was great because the menu had a vegan section and everything was clearly market dairy free and/or gluten free.  We ordered two curries and pakoras and some house pickled veggies.  The pakoras were delicious and I am so glad I ordered two orders of them! The curries were pretty good not the best I’ve had but not the worst either.  The pickled veggies were …um….well they had a really  off putting smell so I didn’t even try them.
  • Wildflour Bakery: Neil and I visited Wildflour last year and instantly fell in love so we had to visit it again.  The first visit (yes it’s so good we went twice) we had a granola scone, a gluten free lemon blueberry scone, a gluten free raspberry cheesecake brownie and a slow drip coffee for him and a (too) spicy coffee for me. My coffee was super spicy because of the cayenne and although I tried to drink it I just couldn’t. On our second visit I had a yummy broccoli cheddar scone and Neil had a granola scone (what can I say it’s really good) and we shared a green smoothie and a slow drip coffee.
  • Julian’s: When we visited Providence last year Julian’s was on the list to try, however since we were just in town for the day we could only go to one restaurant so we didn’t end up making it there.  This trip it  made the list again and not only did we go once we went twice! Our first visit was for dinner with my parents, I ordered the Mediterranean Spice Fried Seitan Skewers with saffron-olive-portobella bulgar, pea tendrils, preserved lemon, & paprika roasted cauliflower purée, Neil had House Made Vegan Teriyaki Sausage with wasabi-salted pommes frites, pickled cabbage, & hot mustard and my parents both ordered grilled chicken one with asparagus the other had a green salad.  We all absolutely loved our meals and would recommend it to both vegans and omnivores. On our second visit we went for Sunday morning breakfast and word to the wise get there early.  They open at 9am, we arrived at 8:55 and there was already a line.  People had been waiting awhile as well and had already put their names on the list.  As we were leaving the line to get in was huge! At least if you do have to wait you can get yourself one of their tasty (sounding) breakfast cocktails to enjoy outside while you wait.  For breakfast Neil and I shared the St. Jamez ‘Benedict’ fried tofu ‘egg’, garlicky spinach, & vegan hollandaise and the special tofu scramble.  Both were good but not as good as dinner.  We wish we had ordered the benedict and the vegan carrot cake pancakes instead of the scramble, oh well there is always next time.

  • Federal Hill Pizza: Federal Hill Pizza was located just a few blocks from our house in Warren so we decided to try it out with my parents for lunch one afternoon.  We shared the bruschetta flatbread, garlic broccoli rabe, the green salad that was topped with grilled veggies and the pasta with garlic, olive oil and grilled veggies.  The star of he show was the green salad with the grilled veggies, it was delicious and we all loved it.  Overall the food was good, my parents had a pizza there one of the nights and they really enjoyed it as well.
  • Crazy Burger: Neil was able to take part of one day off while we were in Rhode Island so we decided to head out of a drive and that’s when we came across Crazy Burger in Narragansett.  Apparently (we learned this after visiting) the restaurant was on Diners, Dive-in’s & Dives, what brought us to Crazy Burger however was the selection of vegan burgers and other vegan offerings. Neil and I really wanted to try everything (vegan) on the menu but decided to go with two burgers one with the slaw and one with fries.  For our burgers we ordered BIRDIE MAE BURGER: Grilled Tempeh, purple sticky rice, sweet potato, roasted sunflower seeds, and rosemary-pumpkin pesto combine to create a wonderful taste & texture; grilled into a tomato tortilla and the WILD & CRAZY MUSHROOM BURGER: Portabella, Porcini & Domestic Mushrooms mixed w/Italian rice & fresh vegetables; served on a vegan bun with a wild mushroom gravy. Both of the burgers were really good but the mushroom burger was extra tasty because of the amazing wild mushroom gravy (which was amazing on the fries as well).  This is definitely a place we hope to visit again, I mean we need to try all of their veggie burgers to really decided which one is best.

Up Next: Coffee Joints and the Happenings in the Ocean State

Where are your favorite places to eat in Rhode Island?

Kisses By The Sea

Yesterday we spent the morning enjoying baked goods and coffee from Wildflour Bakery and then we went grocery shopping to pick up food for the week. I can’t fully express how much I love being able to shop at Trader Joes and Whole Foods- wish we had both at home!

After grocery shopping we headed back to the house an but E down for a nap and then we enjoyed lunch out on the deck. Once E woke and ate we put her in the Ergo and headed out for a walk.

The evenoing was spent getting baby down, watching the Yankees and heading to bed early. I was lucky E only woke three times to nurse and we both got a good nights sleep.

Today Neil has to work so E and I got out for a walk around town and have otherwise been lounging around the house. We may go out tonight but we will see, I do know I am thinking Indian takeout sounds good for dinner though.

My Favorite Summer Getaways

This summer we are sticking close to home since we now have a baby and Neil took a large chunk of vacation as paternity leave.  This is new for us as most summers we fill our time with various short getaways. Since we won’t be getting away this summer I thought I’d take a moment to reminisce about my favorite summer getaways.

Portland, ME

Head out and visit the lighthouses in the evening and watch the sunset and then stop into Silly’s to enjoy some tasty buffalo fries with spicy vegan dip or try one of these vegan friendly restaurants.

Pick up breakfast and lunch at Whole Foods and then take a day trip up to Freeport to do a little shopping at L.L. Bean and the outlets.

Call Allagash Brewery and make a reservation to do one of their tours and sample their tasty brews.

Run the Old Pork 5k or Half Marathon and then celebrate at Novare Res Beir Cafe where they have an extensive beer menu. Not a beer fan? Then stop into Local 188 and try one of their amazing cocktails (okay so I haven’t had an alcoholic one but the virgin versions were amazing).

Head down to the Fore River Sanctuary Trail and go for a walk or a run through the beautiful, well groomed trails.

Oh and my number one must do in Portland, ME is to schedule a foot soak at Soakology <– favorite thing ever.

New Haven, CT

My first to-do in New Haven is to make a reservation at Miya’s Sushi – trust me you need a reservation this place is always packed when we go there.

Stroll around the Yale Campus and stop into Blue State Coffee for a tasty beverage or snack.

Head to Claire’s Cornercopia for vegan pancakes (service here is lacking but the pancakes are tasty).

We always make a stop into Ikea because it’s the closest one to us.

Stop into Edge of The Woods Market and pick up a vegan baked good (I recommend the cupcakes and danishes) and while you’re there pick yourself up a jar of Biscoff Spread <–speaking of Biscoff anyone want to send me a jar?

If you are a beer lover head to Brü Rm. at BAR for a beer and if you’re hungry pizza.

Backpacking on The Long Trail

Pick a part of the trail to hike and either leave one car at each end or arrange a pickup.

Make sure to leave early in the day so you can get to camp at a nice hour so you can make dinner, do a little yoga and enjoy the view.

Make sure you pack a good amount of food but nothing too heavy; my favorites are crackers, oatmeal, Backpackers Pantry pouches and of course a few cans of beer.

Don’t forget to pack extra socks, something warm to wear at night and all the other essentials (see here).

Camping in Vermont and New Hampshire

Head to Franconia Notch in New Hampshire and camp at Lafayette Campground. While you’re there hike the Notch, bike or walk the trails or take the tram to the top of the mountain (and if you dare hike down).

Camp in a lean-to at Underhill State Park a small Vermont state park (one of my favorites) and then take a morning hike on Mount Mansfield.

Camp at Little River State Park in Waterbury, VT.  This is one of Neil and my favorite state parks because it has great hiking and nature paths, kayaking and canoeing and a beach area for relaxing and swimming. Tip: the best site (in my opinion) is site number 21 so make sure you reserve it ahead of time!

Where are your favorite summer getaways? I can’t wait for camping and summer getaways with Edith next year.