“T” is For TSA Approved Travel Snacks-Travel Tips & Tricks


  • Apples *be warned, they make some people gassy.  If you slice these before travel, make sure to treat with Fruit Fresh or lemon juice to prevent browning.
  • Baked oatmeal
  • Bananas
  • Bell Pepper strips
  • Blackberries-whole
  • Blueberries-whole- *Blueberries can be frozen and used as an icepack that TSA won’t confiscate
  • Breakfast bars
  • Breakfast burritos (scrambled egg with diced veggies
  • Breakfast cookies
  • Breakfast sandwich
  • Carrots
  • Celery
  • Cheese sticks/slices
  • Cherries
  • Coconut
  • Cooked ground beef or turkey
  • Cookies
  • Crackers
  • Cucumber
  • Dehydrated/dry fruit
  • Deli meat *perishable item
  • Dry cereal
  • Edamame
  • Energy balls
  • Fruit roll ups
  • Granola/Granola bars
  • Grapes-whole or cut *grapes can be frozen and used as an ice pack which TSA won’t confiscate.
  • Grilled beef, chicken, pork, turkey
  • Hard Boiled Eggs*perishable so shouldn’t be kept at room temperature for more than a couple of hours.
  • Jerky
  • Kiwi-whole or cut
  • Melon-cut, cubed or balls
  • Muffins
  • Nut butters
  • Nuts *unsalted are best
  • Oatmeal (dry packets/cups)-just add hot water
  • Oranges-whole or peeled
  • Pasta (cooked)
  • Peaches (whole or cut up) *treat cut fruit with fruit fresh or lemon juice to prevent browning
  • Pears (whole or cut up) *treat cut fruit with fruit fresh or lemon juice to prevent browning
  • Pineapple (cut up)
  • Plums (whole or cut up)
  • Popcorn
  • Potato wedges
  • Pretzels
  • Quinoa (cooked)
  • Raisins
  • Raspberries-whole
  • Rice (cooked)
  • Rice cakes
  • Roasted chickpeas, pumpkin seeds etc
  • Roasted potatoes and/or veggies
  • Salad
  • Salad dressing *must be put in a container 1 oz or less and passed through with your liquids
  • Sandwich/wraps *Some sandwiches can be frozen the night before to help with transport. Lunch meats are perishable so make sure to keep the sandwich cool when traveling.
  • Smashed potatoes
  • Sugar snap peas
  • Strawberries-whole or sliced (no juice)
  • Trailmix
  • Veggies-mixed
  • Watermelon-whole, cut, or balls
  • Whole grain, vegetable and bean salad

Foods to Avoid-These foods can leave you feeling bloated and/or dehydrated.

  • Salty snacks such as potato chips
  • Very sugary snacks
  • Caffeine
  • Heavy foods such as pizza and hamburgers
  • Smelly foods which could disturb other passengers


Tips for Food and Drinks

Fill an empty water bottle, or purchase a bottle of water once you are on the other side of security.

Always pack some food when you are traveling.  You do not know when/if you might get stranded on the tarmac, or in the airport.    If the plane pulls away from the gate, flight attendants are not allowed to dispense food or drink until the plane is in the air.

Keep hot food hot by packing in an insulated thermos.

Consider freezing some foods (such as sandwiches/muffins) the night before you travel.  Freezing them helps to protect them longer.  By the time you are ready to eat, they will defrost.

Carry condiments (ketchup, mustard, mayo etc) in individual sized serving packets.  These must be passed through security with your other liquids.

Almond butter, peanut butter, hummus etc are considered “creams” and must be passed through security with your other liquids. *However, if these are spread on a sandwich, they are acceptable to pass through in a food bag.

Avoid drinking coffee/tea on a plane.  The water used to prepare these is stored in a holding tank, which is never cleaned.  Choose canned sodas, bottled water and boxed/bottled juices instead.

Fruits, vegetables and meats are generally allowed on a flight, however many international flights will not allow you to remove these items from the plane once you land (due to agricultural laws).   Food should be consumed while in flight and/or disposed of carefully.

Foods such as sandwiches and cut fruits/vegetables must be wrapped or in a container.  Whole foods such as apples and bananas do not need to be packed in containers.

Pack a  plastic spoon, fork, knife, napkin and wet wipe (for each person) with your food kit.  *I also pack a travel straw, but this is optional.

J is for Java-Playing With Words

When we are on an ABC adventure, there are certain letters which always give us challenge. J is one of those letters.  Coffee is often a part of many of our adventures but we are always challenging ourselves to find new ways to describe it.  Java and Joe are both J themed words we can substitute and on this adventure it was our excuse to check out a great little drive through called Cuppa “Joe”.

Thank goodness for the Ethiopian goat herder,  who  realized how energized his goats became after eating the berries from a certain tree.  He noted that the goats wouldn’t sleep at night after consuming the berries. The story goes that the goat herder took the berries to the monks, who steeped them in water, noting that drinking the elixir allowed them to remain awake during evening prayers. News of the magic potion spread around the world.

Thomas Jefferson once said “Coffee-the favorite drink of the civilized world.”   Beans are now grown worldwide and is second only to crude oil, as the most sought after commodity in the world!

It matters not what you choose to call your coffee but if you need it to get started and want to make great use of your letter “J” , you could call it  java, joe, jitter juice or jamocha all will be as satisfying and a perfect excuse to take a break.

“A” Is For “Altered States”-Cruising


Cruising Through The Alphabet-A Is For Altered States


In our real world, Alan and I don’t drink much alcohol.  Usually we’ll have a glass of wine at Christmas and a Mimosa on New Year’s Eve.  We might indulge in the odd wine cooler or a glass of wine with friends.  On average, we probably have 8-10 drinks of alcohol, per year.  Take us on a cruise though and we become different people, usually enjoying at least one drink a day, sometimes a lot more!  Maybe it is the freedom from driving, kids and work that we feel.  But I think there is more to it than that.  What is it about this change of environment that makes us alter our behavior so radically?

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“A” is for “Anniversary at Aonach Mor”!-Harbor Springs, Michigan


Thirty years is a long time to be married.  We wanted to do something different for this special anniversary.  Since our wedding date falls on January 8th, we are often at a loss for how to celebrate during the peak of Michigan’s winter weather.  We had booked a beautiful room in Harbor Springs, Michigan for the weekend.  As part of our Anniversary package, we were given $150 resort credit, to be used at any of the nearby Boyne Resorts.  I scanned the opportunities.  There was skiing, tubing, dog sled pulls, horse drawn sleigh rides and something called the Aonach Mor Moonlight Dinner.  Since we were on an “A” themed adventure, this caught my eye.

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A is for Appetite

Everyone needs to eat.  What about creating an adventure around food?  Here are a few ideas to whet your appetite:

If apples are your thing there are many adventures  you could create around this fruit.  Visit an orchard, then bake them in a pie and then serve it “a la mode”.  You could teach someone how to make applesauce.  If you don’t like apples, there are also “apricots”.   If vegetables are more appealing, try asparagus and/or avocados. For the seed eaters among us, how about almonds and/or acorns?

You could have an adventure by eating a la cart off a menu, or by trying  different appetizers at several restaurants.  Adventures could also center around Asian or Australian cuisine.  Food is always a great reason to explore.  Where will your journey take you?


Document the JourneyWRITING TIP:

Food brings people together, so why not let it be the subject of one of your next entries.  Consider the traditions that form around the food.  Who are the characters?  Is there a recipe that has been handed down? What stories get told around the food?  Does food trigger a memory from childhood?  These are all great things to include in your journal.  The next time you dig into your favorite food, try writing a bit about it.

E is for Empty Bowls


Our “E” date was really “easygoing”.  Our mission was to attend the “Empty Bowls” Fundraiser.  This nationwide “event” is generally held on World Hunger Day, and is meant to bring attention to the many who go without food.  This is symbolized by the “empty” bowl.   As we “enjoyed” our simple meal of soup and bread, we were “entertained” by local musicians.    Everyone here is a volunteer. There is also a silent auction. After “eating”,  attendees are invited to choose an empty bowl home,  a reminder to be conscientious of world hunger.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERABowls are made throughout the year.  Most of these are ceramic, but some are created from a variety of mediums, such as wood or glass. Most are only symbolic, such as those which are woven.  Each bowl has been made by an area artist, student or community member.   With few restrictions, the sizes and designs vary from year to year and become quite the collectors item.  Viewing the 800-1000  bowls displayed in mass, which is also about how many people attend this event, sends a pretty powerful message.     Alan chose a bowl which looked like a pie crust.  He said it reminded him of his mom’s Lemon Meringue Pie (you can see that story here).