Create Your Nature Introduces 11 New Menu Items

Local superfood café expands smoothie bowl, oatmeal and salad offerings


The words “eat well, live well” have never rang truer than at Create Your Nature this summer. The health-conscious Winter Park café has introduced nearly a dozen new options to an already award-winning menu that features acai bowls, oatmeal blends and salads. The new menu items rolled out June 21.

 Cacao-a-Bunga bowl from Create Your Nature
 Cacao-a-Bunga

When Create Your Nature opened last fall, it was just a dream project of husband-wife team Dan and Kim Dill. Now, just seven months after opening, the duo’s dream has proven reality as the store has already become a favorite destination for Winter Park residents and visitors.

“The response from locals has been nothing short of amazing,” said Kim Dill. “Having only been open a few months, we’ve been experimenting with our menu based on customer feedback to provide a diverse mix of clean eating options and introduce a variety of new flavor profiles. We believe we’ve achieved a great mix of the two with the introduction of these new menu items.”

Along with the great taste and health benefits customers have come to know and love, guests will be pleased to see the tradition of original entrée names remains with new options like C’mon Baby Do the Matcha and Obi-Wan Quinobi to name a few.

“From the very beginning, our menu has always been transparent in the products we use while bringing a creative and engaging edge,” said Julie Wilson, General Manager. “Many of the menu item names were suggested by friends and family. It’s part of our culture here, and we really aim to keep that family friendly environment going through every initiative we take on.”

The following menu items are available starting today, June 21:

Smoothie Bowls:

·         Pink Dragon
o    Blend: Organic Pitaya (Dragon Fruit), Pineapple, Banana
o    Toppings: Granola, Coconut, Pineapple, Banana, Kiwi, Local Raw Honey
·         Cacao-a-Bunga
o    Blend: Blueberries, Banana, Cacao Powder
o    Toppings: Chocolate Granola, Almonds, Coconut, Banana, Cacao Nibs
·         Hawaii 5 Ohhhh
o    Blend: Banana, Pineapple, Mango
o    Toppings: Granola, Coconut, Chia Seeds, Banana, Pineapple, Local Raw Honey
·         C’mon Baby Do the Matcha
o    Blend: Pineapple, Banana, Avocado, Baby Spinach, Matcha Tea
o    Toppings: Granola, Almonds, Hemp Seeds, Blueberries, Raspberries, Local Raw Honey
·         Little Miss Sunshine
o    Blend: Strawberries, Mango, Pineapple
o    Toppings: Granola, Coconut, Strawberries, Pineapple, Local Raw Honey

Signature Oats:

·         Monkey Business
o    Sliced Bananas, Walnuts, Chocolate Chips, Peanut Butter, Local Raw Honey
·         Thanksgiving 365
o    Diced Sweet Potatoes, Pecans, Greek Yogurt, Brown Sugar, Cinnamon
·         Blackberry Crumble
o    Sliced Blackberries, Granola, Pecans, Greek Yogurt, Brown Sugar, Cinnamon
·         Rock the Casbah
o    Cashews, Raisins, Coconut, Coconut Milk, Turmeric, Cardamom, Harissa Oil

Salads:

·         Holy Frijole (1-pint mason jar)
o    Black Beans, Garbanzo Beans, Corn, Tomato, Green Bell Pepper, Cilantro
o    Dressing: Lemon Balsamic, Chipotle Olive Oil
·         Obi Wan Quinobi (1/2-pint mason jar)
o    Chilled Quinoa, Spinach, Dried Cranberries, Almonds, Pumpkin Seeds, Celery, Apples, Parsley
o    Dressing: Grilled Lemon Balsamic

About Create Your Nature
Winter Park, Fla.-based Create Your Nature is the brainchild of husband-wife team Dan and Kim Dill to bring their love for superfoods, particularly acai, to busy local professionals and families. The café features fresh takes and tasty bites, such as smoothie bowls, including its award-winning All American Acai Bowl, oatmeal blends and salads. Open 7 a.m. to 5 p.m.Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday. For more information, visit http://www.createyournature.com or follow us on FacebookTwitter, Instagram and Tumblr. #getyourbowlon

A Visit to Barley & Vine Biergarten in Orlando


For a more up to date visit to Barely & Vine Biergarten check out my post on → A Lady Crafter.



~ Kelli

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Editor's Note: This post was originally published in May 2014 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Drinking and Dining with a View at Paddlefish Restaurant in Disney Springs

I love Disney! I love living in Orlando where I can hop on I-4 and be down to Walt Disney World in no time. Much faster than my visits coming from Denver. 

There's so much I enjoy about Walt Disney World, but one of my favorites is hanging out and exploring Disney Springs

I am not a mall person AT ALL, so when they magically transformed Downtown Disney I was a happy lady. I love being able to shop, drink and eat and do it all at Walt Disney World.🌟

While there have been a bunch of new shops and eateries opening up in Disney Springs, One iconic restaurant has gotten a sweet makeover. 

I stopped by Paddlefish Restaurant to check out their swanky new digs and enjoy some drinks and sample some food. 

The party took place on the rooftop of this iconic Disney restaurant. This is the only Disney Springs restaurant to offer rooftop-waterfront dining👍 The live music up top on the weekends is a nice bonus.
Stairs to the Rooftop lounge at Paddlefish in Disney Springs

While making my way to the roof I couldn't get over the views from the dining room. You could sit here drink wine and watch that volcano erupt all night🌋
Dining room view of disney springs from paddlefish
Dinner with a view

The Arabian Nights Come To Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Aladdin and the Magic Lamp

Theater brings popular magical story to life on stage for young audiences, running June 15 – July 23, 2017 in the Goldman Theater.


Orlando, FL - Orlando Shakespeare Theater in Partnership with UCF (Orlando Shakes) kicks off its 2017-2018 Children’s Series with the celebrated Middle Eastern folktale Aladdin and the Magic Lamp from June 15 - July 23, 2017 in the Goldman Theater. Adapted by Brandon Roberts (2016’s Beauty and the Beast and 2015’s The Frog and the Princess), the family-friendly production will feature a “Choose Your Own Journey” interactive approach, in which the audience will be able to determine the outcome of the play. Tickets ($9 - $20) can be purchased by calling (407) 447-1700 ext. 1, online at www.orlandoshakes.org, or in person at the John and Rita Lowndes Shakespeare Center (812 E. Rollins St.).

Aladdin and the Magic Lamp tells the timeless tale of a boy, a genie, and the power of pursuing your dreams. Based on Middle Eastern folktale The Arabian Nights, a young man named Aladdin seeks advice on how to meet the princess from wise genies, a powerful sultan, and his own mother. Told with help from the younger members of the audience, Aladdin learns that it takes more than a wish to make a good impression and to always follow your heart.

“We are very excited to be kicking off our Children’s Series with a different kind of fairy tale this year,” said Anne Hering, Director of Education at Orlando Shakes. “The ‘Choose Your Own Journey’ approach presented in Aladdin and the Magic Lamp will make audience members feel like they are really living the adventure like never before.”

Aladdin and the Magic Lamp features Luis Herrera as Aladdin, Henry Gibson as Genie of the Ring/Ensemble, Gemma Victoria Waldonas Vizier  Hasna/Mother, and Chelsey Panisch as Genie of the Lamp/Ensemble.

The Orlando Shakes artistic team includes Director Patrick Braillard, Set Designer Kurt Bippert, Costume Designer Mel Barger, Lighting Designer Colleen Doherty, and Sound Designer Britt Sandusky, Stage Manager Paige Gober, and Production Assistant Alyssa Will Zegers.

Aladdin and the Magic Lamp is presented by CliftonLarsonAllen.

Chelsey Panisch as Genie of the Lamp and Luis Herrera as Aladdin star in Orlando Shakespeare Theater’s production of Aladdin and the Magic Lamp.
 Chelsey Panisch as Genie of the Lamp and Luis Herrera as Aladdin star in Orlando Shakespeare Theater’s production of Aladdin and the Magic Lamp. Photo by Luke Evans.


Mango’s Tropical Café Orlando Announces Its All-Star Lineup For “Mango’s Summer Concert Series” Kicking Off Friday, June 16

I-Drive’s Hottest Destination in Nightlife and Entertainment Presents the Biggest Names in Latin Music Live in Concert All Summer Long


Orlando, FL (June 8, 2017) – Summer is heating up in Central Florida as International Drive’s hottest destination in nightlife and entertainment, Mango’s Tropical Café, welcomes the biggest names in Latin music to their stage with the 2017 Mango’s Summer Concert Series.  With a state-of-the-art sound system and viewing areas from everywhere inside Mango’s breathtaking two-story 55,000 square-foot venue, concert goers will be up on their feet all night long while the hottest artists in Latin music entertain them.  Doors open at 9:30pm.  Shows starts at 11pm, with the fun continuing until 2am.  Pre-sale tickets start at $25 and can be purchased thru www.mangos.com or athttp://ticketera.us/.  VIP options are also available.  The exciting lineup includes:

·         Friday, June 16 - Andy Montañez
·         Friday, June 23 - Osmani Garcia
·         Friday, June 30 - Justin Quiles
·         Friday, July 7 – Coming Soon
·         Friday, July 14 - Jose Alberto "El Canario"
·         Friday, July 21 – Ismael Miranda and Jose Alberto El Canario
·         Friday, July 28 – Tony Dice
·         Friday, August 4 - Pirulo
·         Friday, August 11 – Tony Vega
·         Friday, August 18 – Tito Nieves
·         Friday, August 25 – Noriel

“We could not be more excited to welcome Latin music’s biggest names to Mango’s Orlando,” says COO Joshua Wallack.”  “This will undoubtedly be the biggest, hottest and most memorable concert series in town this summer, the next major offering of world-famous Mango’s, as we continue our epic transformation of the tourist district that is International Drive.”

For more information on Mango’s 2017 Summer Concert Series and Mango’s Tropical Café and attractions, call 407-673-4422 or visit www.mangos.com and www.facebook.com/MangosTropCafeOrlando.

Mango's Orlando summer concert series lineup

Brooklyn Water Bagel Honors Victims of Pulse Nightclub Shooting on Tragedy’s One-Year Anniversary

In support of Orlando United Day on Monday, June 12th, Brooklyn Water Bagel’s Winter Park and Lake Mary store locations will serve special limited-time only rainbow bagels – with 100% of the proceeds from rainbow bagel sales to benefit the Better Together Fund at Central Florida Foundation.
Central Florida Locations to Donate 100% of Rainbow Bagel Proceeds
to Better Together Fund at Central Florida Foundation – 6/10 – 6/12

Significant Trees in Orlando

I love trees and Orlando has some beautiful ones scattered about. I came upon this local tour to find some of the most significant trees located in Orlando.

Here are is where you can find significant trees in Orlando


*Mayor Carl T. Langford Park





Constitution Green Park





*Big Tree Park

*Harry P. Leu Gardens


*The "Mayor" in Loch Haven Park




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Editor's Note: This post was originally published in August 2012 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Exploring Big Tree Park in Orlando

I love trees, their beauty is timeless. I came across a Significant TreeMap from the Orlando Parks & Recreation Department.  I had seen all the trees on this list except for the daddy of them all, the magnificent oak tree located in Big Tree Park.  

Though there is another Big Tree Park in Central Florida, this park is located in the heart of Orlando.

This is the oldest tree in Orlando, and it has a park all to itself. This small lot is out of the way; a block from 17-92 in the Mills 50 District. We took a stroll over to check it out when we were wandering the neighborhood. The park reminded me of one of my favorite children's book; The Little House. You have this amazing tree that has been in the same spot for over 400 years while life around it keeps changing.
Big Tree Park in Orlando


Though the only thing to do at this park is to sit and enjoy the grandeur of Mother Nature; it's a peaceful place worth a look at.



~ Kelli

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Editor's Note: This post was originally published in July 2012 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Exploring Harry P. Leu Gardens in Orlando

I love parks and can never spend enough time walking around them. Leu Gardens in Orlando is a great place to explore and take in the Florida trees and plants. 

The garden has over 50 acres to explore!

Every visit I take I seem to discover a new area I hadn't come upon before. 
grounds at Leu Gardens Orlando

Please note that food and Alcohol are not permitted in the gardens except for events such as Movie Nights & Jazz events. There are a couple of vendors selling food during those events as well.
rules at Leu Gardens Orlando

The Gardens change throughout the year. I recommend coming for a visit each season.
Museum house at Leu Gardens Orlando

I especially enjoy all the hidden areas in the garden where you can sit and take in the sights.
A little romantic setting💗
swing benches to sit at Leu Gardens Orlando

There are many different gardens to explore.

garden sculptures at Leu Gardens Orlando


Not all plants can make it in Florida. Here is where they are tested out.
florida flower testing garden Leu Gardens Orlando

The Floral Clock is inspired by the Floral Clock in Edinburgh Scotland.
floral clock at Leu Gardens Orlando

The Rose Gardens at Leu Gardens is the largest formal rose garden in Florida🌹
rose garden at leu gardens


The children especially like the Butterfly Garden. This garden has a lovely array of eye-catching flowers.
butterfly garden at leu gardens

There are many beautiful trees inside the garden.
Live oak trees at leu gardens

The Leu House Museum is a historical home inside the gardens. Your admission to the gardens includes a 30-minute tour if you'd like. Each December the home is decoration for the holiday season and it is a visual delight!
Leu Gardens Museum house


There are bound to be some birds to observe at the Lake Rowena Overlook. I spotted a Great Blue Heron my last visit. There are always a few turtles swimming or sunning as well.
Lake Rowena at Leu Gardens


One of my favorite spots in the garden in looking down the orginal entrance to the home.




There are always events taking place at Leu Gardens. They have Movie Nights the first Friday of each month. They have classes that range from pest control to various cooking classes. The first Monday of the month they offer free admission to the gardens (unless there is a special exhibition)

A wonderful place to explore in Orlando!

What I enjoy: There is a lot to explore with all the different gardens.
Cool feature: Admission is free the first Monday of the month
Good for a date: ✔
Good for kids:✔
Good for teens: Could be
Good for groups:✔
OK for dogs: No
Local spots nearby to explore: Blue Bird Bakeshop, Ten10 Brewing & East End Market


~ Kelli

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Editor's Note: This post was originally published in May 2011 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.


A Visit to Banh Mi Nha Trang in Orlando

It's alway fun exploring the Mills 50 District in Orlando. They call it "The Intersection of Culture & Creativity".  The Vietnamese culture is a big part of the area. There are many, shops & restaurants catering to the Vietnamese community.  If you are looking for Vietnamese food in Orlando this is your spot.

I had heard delicious stories about the bánh mì sandwiches served at Nah Trang Subs. I had wanted to go for some time and it just never worked out. One of our times stopping by this small eatery we forgot it was cash only and left empty handed to an empty wallet.
Banh Mi Nha Trang Orlando

On a Saturday afternoon, Bryan and I decided to be adventurous and take a four-mile walk to downtown. Nah Trang Subs was about the halfway mark and we thought it would make a nice spot to grab a snack.

With cash in hand, we walked into this tiny shop and were welcomed by the owner. There was a menu with about 20 bánh mì sandwiches on the menu. It can be overwhelming if this is your first visit, but I had done my research and heard the meatball sandwich was the way to go. We ordered our $3.50 sandwich, got a mango drink and joined a family at the large table in the middle of the restaurant.
Banh Mi Nha Trang Orlando

#15 Meatball

Oh my, this sandwich was amazing! The bread was perfect; nice and chewy while the fillings were a great combination. 

We chatted a bit with the family from Celebration who brought their two young girls in to try some bánh mì. They were just as satiated as we were.

Our next visit was during lunch. It was a bit busy and the table was occupied with guests, so Bryan & I grabbed our sandwiches to go and enjoyed them in our car parked out back. We enjoyed the meatball so much that we ordered it again. We asked the group of young men sitting at the table for a recommendation and they said try #1 the Bánh Mì Dac Biet – House Special Sandwich.

I couldn't tell you what meat it was, all I know is this was just as tasty as our #15 Bánh Mì Xíu Mai – Meatballs Simmered in Tomato Sauce Sandwich.
Banh Mi Nha Trang Orlando

Now it seems like I'm just finding reasons to visit Nah Trang Subs. We ended up stopping by this local eatery three times in a month. The food is so good and it's crazy how inexpensive it is. The subs are $3.50 and if you order five you get a free one on that visit. While the food is what draws us here I absolutely adore the owners. The husband greets you with a smile and every time you leave the wife say "Thank you, see you tomorrow".
Come spend an afternoon exploring the Mills 50. Make sure you have some cash on hand so you can stop in for some delicious bánh mì sandwiches.

Website
What I enjoy: Delicious sandwiches!
Cool feature: Bread is made in house.
Good for a date: Take them to go
Good for kids:  No
Good for teens: Yes
Good for groups: No
OK for dogs: No
Local spots nearby to explore: Avalon,  Chewy Boba & Quantum Leap Winery
Craft beer in Orlando's Mills 50 District


~ Kelli

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Editor's Note: This post was originally published in February 2014 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.

Explore Your Identity at New Exhibit Premiering At Orlando Science Center

‘Identity: An Exhibition of You’ examines who we arephysically, psychologically, and socially



Opening Saturday, June 3, 2017
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.
WHAT:
Orlando Science Center will be opening its new traveling exhibit, Identity: An Exhibition of You, on Saturday, June 3. Identity challenges our notions of personal identity and uses the familiar (our body, our thoughts, our relationships) to make connections with the scientific (our genes, our brains, our roles in society).

Your own identity is front and center while you learn about genetics and biological identity, psychology and personality, and social science. Look at your own fingerprints, see your personality as a musical spectrum, investigate where your brain stores your identity, map your social connections, and throughout the exhibition, see yourself from new perspectives: your future self, your symmetrical self, and yourself as a different gender or ethnicity.
WHEN:
Saturday, June 3, 2017 through Monday, Sept. 4, 2017
WHERE:
Orlando Science Center |777 E. Princeton St. | Orlando, FL 32803
PARKING:
Limited parking is available in the Orlando Science Center parking garage, located directly across the street from the Science Center, for $5 per vehicle.
COST:
Identity is included with daily general admission to Orlando Science Center, which is free to Members, $20.95 for adults, $18.95 for seniors and students, and $14.95 for youth (ages 3 – 11). Discounts are available for groups of 15 or more. Admission also includes access to four floors of exhibits, live shows, giants screen films and 3D movies.
INFO:
For more information, please call 407.514.2000 or visit www.osc.org/identity.