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”The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences.“ ~Christopher McCandless Last November, I was invited to give a talk at the TEDxTaipei Salon in Taiwan. This would be my second TEDx Talk—the first being the one I did at TEDxUCSD in May 2015. The theme was “Inspiration from Five Senses,” and the description blurb I received from the event coordinators read: “In this TEDxTaipei Salon, we will take the audience on a journey

Last fall during our trip to San Francisco, my friends, hubs, and I took a day trip up to wine country. Before crossing the bridge, we grabbed pastries at Craftsman & Wolves. Then on the way, we stopped at Russian River Brewing; as it’s not available in Texas, the hubs always buys a few bottles to bring back home for our beer fridge. We visited a couple of wineries and then had to book it back across the bridge to make it to our dinner reservation at Kusakabe, a Michelin-rated

To my fellow blind and visually impaired community, I’m excited to announce I’m involved in the production of a documentary with an Emmy award winning producer that focuses on the dating life of the blind and visually impaired. The goal of our project is to raise awareness and shed light on a population who is often marginalized. We are seeking women and men who are interested in participating in the film. If you are single and actively dating, we would like to hear from you. We are also seeking the

I had some airline credit I needed to use before it expired, so the hubs and I decided to go to San Francisco for a weekend. First we checked out some southern soul food at Brenda’s to see if it could hang with what we’re accustomed to in Texas (it couldn’t). Then the hubs takes me to this eclectic little taxidermy store, which originally started as a gardening nursery, called Paxton Gate. I loved some of the strange things found in the store, but many of them were hella expensive,

I turn 37 today. I’m officially in my upper thirties. Yikes. I’ve blogged a number of times on healthier living, getting fit, and how to stay youthful. Now here’s a glimpse into my high intensity interval training (HIIT), which combines aerobic exercise with strength training. The point is to keep your heart rate up while building muscle and core strength, allowing for short rests in between. It’s about moving fast and hard: short bursts of energy which max you out. I’ve been working out with Jarrod Marrs for about 1.5

You know those “where are they now?” segments on celebrity news shows and articles? I sort of did one when I visited MasterChef U.S. Season 4 winner Luca Manfé’s food truck, The Lucky Fig. (Or maybe Luca’s fans saw my YouTube episode and were like, “Oh, so that’s what that Christine from season 3 is doing now—making YouTube videos and eating…”) Either way, neither guesses are far from the truth. Luca was born in Italy, moved to New York, and was living there when I first met him during season

First, my cookbook, Recipes from My Home Kitchen was published in the U.S., became a New York Times best-seller, and just this last December, it was published in Vietnamese by Tre Publishing House in Vietnam. You could already borrow my cookbook in Braille from the National Library Service, but now it’s available for purchase from the National Braille Press for just $23.99—the same cost as the cover price for the hardback. I was gifted the above copy from a woman involved with Sight Into Sound, a non-profit based in Houston

Our last day of the UK and Ireland summer holiday was spent in none other than Dublin, where the crowds are boisterous and the alcohol flows freely. We have a pint of Guinness for breakfast and a Jameson tasting for “afternoon tea.” (Well, the boys tried the Jameson—as much as I love Jameson, my liver was in full protest mode by now.) As with all other countries, I had to check out the snack aisle at a convenience store. It’s interesting how there were a lot of what I’d consider

The Cliffs of Moher are how this trip was born. Even though I can’t see, I’ve heard (and remembered from photos past) how beautiful Ireland was, those emerald green cliffs jutting out over steel blue sea. At home, photos of our travels line the walls going up the staircase, and I wanted to add Ireland’s breathtaking views to the collection. And that’s how it all started. I said, “Let’s go to Ireland.” Then I said, “Well, John likes Scotch whiskey, so let’s hit up Scotland, too.” Then we said, “Well,

I had no idea sheep were so amazing! After cradling a two-day old lamb, I experienced an ovine runway. Initially, we thought we would be getting ripped off, having paid 5 euro to listen to a shepherd talk about his sheep, but it turns out this was the highlight of our Ireland rail tour. Each sheep knew exactly when the shepherd was talking about her, and she’d get up and waddle to stage center. As far as I was told, there was no physical prodding, calling of name, or eye

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