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Food & Travel

Food & Travel

Your Travel Options in the 21st Century

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Travel is a fantastic way to take your vacation. There are many great options for traveling in the current century, whether for a married couple looking forward to a passionate anniversary on a cruise, or a family headed to a famous theme park for a week of fun.

But before you go, here are some of the things you should consider before going on a travel excursion.

Luggage matters

Some people still think that all you need in terms of luggage is to retrieve an old suitcase from the closet and stuff it. Others like to go to a garage sale, thrift store, or discount store in order to find something cheap and inexpensive.

While these approaches can save you a little money, the temporary savings make cost you dearly later on. The fact of the matter is that good strong luggage is the best way to take clothing and personal items on a trip. If a suitcase is damaged before your trip, it can turn a happy excursion into a disaster when the case tears open completely.

There’s luggage available today that includes a wide variety of sizes and shapes that are ideal for any travel. A newly married couple will want to take less luggage then a couple with five children, obviously. Having the right luggage can prevent unplanned problems from occurring.

Finally, if you’re carrying high-quality luggage, that can give you and your companions a great look that will impress others, from fellow sightseers to service people.

A good working camera

Taking pictures with a camera has never been easier. Digital cameras have never been more versatile. It certainly beats the old days when film was necessary to take a picture.

At the same time, it’s important to have a decent camera when you’re traveling around the country or the world. Incredible moments happen every day while you’re enjoying a travel excursion. To ensure these moments are captured for all time, you’ll want to have a quality camera that takes great pictures.

Nowadays a photograph can be emailed, printed, downloaded, or put posted on the Internet almost immediately. While these ideas are great, keep in mind that lots of other people will be able to see and even capture these photos. One of the top commercial photographic image companies, Getty, has had to deal with this problem.

The skies are friendly

Whenever a tragedy or mystery occurs in the air, people get quite concerned. The reality is that flying is very safe. You’re safer flying than you are driving your car from home to work.

Governments across the world have sought to keep flying a pleasurable experience that’s also incredibly safe. Mechanics and engineers spend countless hours to ensure that planes are safe and secure. This enables people to overcome their doubts about flying.

Being prepared for traveling can make a trip quite enjoyable. It’s important to have a terrific suitcase, and a camera that works dependably and well when needed. Knowledge about the friendly skies helps as well, since getting to your destination is part of the thrill.

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Food & Travel

Is Fido Safe in the Car? Study Tackles Car Harness Safety

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What’s more joyful than the sight of a dog hanging his head out of a car window? Tongue lolling and eyes squinting against the breeze, Fido is in a paradise of sights and smells.

These days, people want to make sure their furry best friend is as safe in the car as he is happy. In-car restraints for dogs are becoming popular as safety awareness grows in importance, but do they work?

The Center for Pet Safety (CPS) partnered up with Subaru to find out. The results of their inquiry suggest that we have a long way to go to guarantee a safe ride for Fido.

Safety standards for traveling pups

In a mere 30-mph collision, a 60-pound dog can turn into a 2700-pound projectile. Several international campaigns are bringing increased attention to canine car safety, and many dog owners are turning to third-party harnesses to secure their dog while traveling.

Unfortunately, there are no regulated safety standards for such harnesses. Most companies use child safety seat guidelines for their products, but few have the resources to perform extensive testing.

Crash test dummies for dogs?

CPS and Subaru proposed to test 11 car harnesses for dogs. In the first round, they tested the harnesses to see if they were strong enough to hold up during a crash at all. Only seven harnesses were strong enough to move on to the second round.

Round two was a basic crash test. They used dummies that mimicked a 25-pound terrier mix, a 45-pound Border Collie, and a 75-pound Golden Retriever. They put the dummy dogs through a standard 30-mph crash and used the same guidelines applied to child safety seats to interpret the results.

The results? A drumroll please …

Out of seven harnesses, six had major design or construction flaws or underwent what researchers called “catastrophic failures.” With those six, either the dog, the driver, or both would likely suffer injury in the case of a crash.

The remaining harness, the Sleepypod ClickIt Utility, was the top (and only full adequate) performer. While it aced all the study’s tests, it fails the unofficial consumer friendliness test.

Online reviews are mixed, with many reporting it’s difficult to get on and off, does not fit all dogs properly, and doesn’t have the best customer support to back it up. Manufacturers still have a long way to go before they perfect a design.

What you can do

These results don’t have to spell the end of adventuring with your dog. A few brands are altering their harness design based on the test results. Sleepypod has commissioned CPS to do further testing as it tweaks the product.

You can also secure a padded crate to your back seat or cargo area. While not at good as a perfect harness, it’s better for your animal than no restraint at all.

As the demand for safer canine restraints rises, we’re certain to see better safety options in after-market restraints and perhaps even in cars themselves. Traveling with your dog could become relatively worry-free in the near future.

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Food & Travel

5 Smart Tips About How and Where to Eat in Austin

tcs austin food

The local flavor and atmosphere in Austin is unlike anywhere else in Texas. You simply cannot skip the food scene the next time you are in this city. One of the best clues to the nature of the capital of Texas is that its unofficial motto is to keep the city weird.

It’s a diverse city — the fourth largest in the state — and the locals like the rest of the world to know that this is one city that isn’t afraid to think outside the box. The food scene makes that clear. Read on to learn about five of the most important tips regarding your Austin dining experience.

1. Good pizza isn’t hard to find

One of the biggest challenges facing the Austin food scene has long been the absence of truly great pizza. In recent years, however, the opening of Bufalina’s Pizza has introduced this eclectic city to amazing hot pies.

Using a simple menu that consists of five Italian pizza recipes, and simple but decadent appetizers and salads, there’s nothing fancy or flashy about this Austin pizzeria. But the fact that you won’t see an empty seat in the house no matter when you show up speaks highly of the fact that making time to eat pizza here is one of the best dining tips you’ll get.

2. Food trucks are hot

One of the biggest trends in dining to hit Austin has been the growing number of food trucks around the city. One tip you’ll need when traveling to the capital is that if you see a food truck, stop for a bite.

You’ll find food trucks in Austin to suit every palate, from sophisticated and vegan to hardcore meat lovers and ethnic choices you might never have encountered before. Grab a seat in the park or on a bench, because you’ll need to sit down for this meal.

3. BBQ is always king

You can’t come to Austin without a stop for BBQ, which is, after all, king in Texas. The best advice you’ll get when it comes to finding the best BBQ in the city is to head straight for the Pit BBQ. Wear your casual clothes and come hungry.

After an encounter with authentic down-home cooking and real Texas BBQ, you’ll leave wondering if it’s possible your pants could get any tighter. Real Texas BBQ is hard to find anywhere else in the country, and the people in Austin know how much the rest of the world wants a piece of it.

4. Tradition wins every time

Here’s a tip: When you’re eating in Austin, an authentic Texas-style meal is something you have to try. No matter what your personal taste, a visit to the Frisco is in order. It’s your run-of-the-mill greasy spoon restaurant with a real Texas menu and even a waitress that’s been on staff longer than your mother has been alive.

5. Party time

You might plan on hosting a party in Texas, and that means you’ll need to know what to serve and how to make the party interesting. Real southern food is always a plus; hiring food trucks to come sit in your driveway is another popular approach these days.

What really makes a party memorable, however, is a great band. The best party bands are the ones that can cover the songs everyone knows while getting them on their feet and on the dance floor.

Austin is a city with a great deal of diversity. What this means is that you can’t come here and expect upscale, high-end restaurants for every meal. When you come to Austin, prepare for casual meals, down-home cooking, and traditional Texas favorites.

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Food & Travel

5 Myths About Tipping

tcs tipping

Tipping is more than just something nice to do; it’s an essential part of life. Many people think tipping isn’t necessary, but the truth is that a lot of people depend on it.

Eating out in Chicago will give you many opportunities to exercise your tipping muscles, and you’ll need to be prepared to tip wherever you go.

Here are five common myths about tipping:

1. Tipping isn’t necessary

Most service personnel earn wages, right? The sad truth is that most service personnel earn far below minimum wage, so their tips are necessary to help them earn a decent salary.

For example, some servers earn just $2.50 to $4.00 per hour as salary, but their tips make it possible for them to earn as much as $8 to $10 per hour, or more — depending on how busy it is.

2. Tipping delivery drivers isn’t necessary

Many restaurants charge a delivery fee, but the driver receives only a portion of that fee. The restaurant will cover the driver’s expenses (gas, vehicle insurance, etc.) from that fee, and some will go toward the driver’s earnings.

Many delivery drivers depend on tips, so it’s only fair to hand them a gratuity.

3. Tipping only reflects the quality of service

While a good tip should be given for quality service, a minimum tip is expected for service personnel.

Taxi drivers may only earn a portion of what you’re charged for your fare, but tipping them for a speedy trip is just good manners. You’re not sending a message by tipping poorly; you’re just annoying the wait staff or taxi driver.

4. You should leave the cash tip on the table

This is common practice, but the truth is that many unscrupulous employees have been known to pocket another server’s tips. If you are going to tip your server, always try to make sure the tip gets into his or her hands … or at the very least into the bill book your server will pick up.

5. Certain jobs aren’t worth a tip

This is also a common myth, but the truth is that any job that provides you a service is worth your tip. If someone drives you around, carries your bags, serves you food, or delivers your mail, it’s worth tipping them so they do the job well. It’s also just the nice thing to do!

Now that you know about tipping, it’s time to go for a nice night on the town! Check out For Locations to find out some great places to hit up in Chicago …

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Food & TravelUncategorized

Highest Rated Mixed Drinks

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Drinking takes up a good chunk of a student’s life.  You’re stressed out, wanna have a good time, hang out with your friends, and make some bad decisions, drinking just feels so right, shhhh, just let it happen.

But night after night, sometimes drinking can get focking boring!  Well don’t you fret, with these delicious mixed drinks; you’ll soon be on your way to debauchery!  Weeeee!

Sex on the Beach

Ingredients:

2/3 oz. Schnapps, peach

1 1/3 oz. Vodka

1 1/3 oz. Cranberry Juice

1 1/3 oz. Orange Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Combine ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Shake and strain into a highball glass filled with ice.

 (don’t ask me, okay, this is just what came up on Google for “panty hamster”)

Panty Hamster

Ingredients:

1 part Jägermeister

1 part Liqueur, melon

1 part Liqueur, raspberry

2 parts Cranberry Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Strain into glass.

Dirty Bizzo

Ingredients:

1 part Rum, coconut

1 part Schnapps, peach

1 part Tuaca

1 part Cranberry Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Strain into glass.

 

Sex with the Bartender

Ingredients:

1 1/2 oz. Rum, light

1 1/2 oz. Schnapps, strawberry

1 splash Cranberry Juice

Fill with Orange Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Mix everything together in glass with ice.

 

Electric Smurf

Ingredients:

1 oz. Curacao, blue

1 oz. Rum, coconut

Fill with Pineapple Juice

Fill with Sprite

Mixing Instructions

Fill lower half of glass with ice cubes. Add rum and curacao. Fill glass half with pineapple juice, and half with Sprite. Stir slightly and serve.

 

(bet you’re paying attention now…you dirty bird…)

Sex with Jennifer

Ingredients:

1 1/2 oz. Rum, coconut

1 oz. Triple Sec

1 1/2 oz. Vodka

1 dash Grenadine

Fill with Pineapple Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Mix in glass, drink fast.

 

Blonde Bimbo

Ingredients:

1 part Rum, coconut

1 part Schnapps, peach

1 part Tuaca

1 part Pineapple Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Strain into glass.

 

Wild Wet Dream

Ingredients:

 1 part Curacao, blue

1 part Liqueur, melon

1 part Rum, coconut

3 parts Cranberry Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Add equal parts of alcohol over ice and fill glass with cranberry juice.

 

Kamikaze

Ingredients:

1 oz. Triple Sec (Cointreau)

1 oz. Vodka

1 oz. Lime Juice

1 wedge Lime

Mixing Instructions:

Shake ingredients in a cocktail shaker with ice. Strain into a cocktail glass. Garnish with a lime wedge and a stir stick.

…and now for one of the highest rated mixed drinks…

…wait for it…

Tropical Hooter

Ingredients:

1 oz. Liqueur, melon

1 oz. Rum, coconut (Malibu)

2 oz. Cranberry Juice

2 oz. Pineapple Juice

Mixing Instructions:

Mix ingredients over ice in glass. Shake if preferred.

And what kind of friend would I be if I didn’t recommend a demeaning shot for my fellow ladies?  WARNING: all boys will be coming to the yard to watch you take this shot.

Blow Job

Ingredients:

3/4 oz. Irish Cream (Bailey’s)

3/4 oz. Kahlua

Top with Whipped cream

Mixing Instructions:

Combine Kahlua and Bailey’s in a shot glass, and top with a puff of whipped cream. It must be shot without using your hands!

I hope Jennifer’s ready…I’m gonna have so much sex with her this weekend.

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Food & Travel

Travel Overseas and Revolutionize Your Life

traveling-overseas

The desire to explore the world is human nature. Experiencing new tastes and cultures, learning new languages and customs — these are the things that keep our brain engaged and growing and make rich memories. By taking in the greater world, you inevitably experience some amazing personal growth. Here are some of the ways that happens:

The people

The sights and wonders of the wide world are magnificent and transformative, but they are only a piece of the puzzle. People are what make travel magic. It may be interactions with locals or encounters with fellow travelers that spark lifelong friendships or simply constitute an incredible moment.

In poor and rich countries alike, children will capture your heart. No matter the circumstances, they are playful, curious, and a joy to interact with. Those are the moments that will bring great personal growth and gratitude.

The food

An integral part of travel is trying the local flavors and foods. Your memories will be visceral. The smell of spices and fragrant scents will forever bring you back to those moments when you experienced something new and exotic.

Often, it opens up a world of culinary curiosity that brings flair, flavor, and health benefits when you return to day-to-day life in the US. This is a delight to indulge: travel for the sake of inspiring the taste buds! You’ll likely find yourself seeking out these dishes — or even making them yourself — back home.

The freedom

Europe makes it incredibly easy to ditch an itinerary. Jump on a train and explore without the hassles of driving, to make hotel reservations, or the time crunch to accomplish XYZ. Find a place you love? Spend a little extra time there. The freedom to make spur-of-the-moment memories is an experience itself.

Personal growth

Travel is eye-opening and life-changing because it means seeing various cultures up close and personal. Rich, poor, culturally wealthy, or historically vital, travel brings depth to a person’s understanding of the world and where you fit in it.

The adage that traveling as a couple will either make or break the relationship definitely rings true. The stressors of travel can make for less than romantic moments: exhaustion, close quarters, culture shock, and language barriers may bring out the worst in some people. On the other hand, it can cement a relationship by showcasing each person’s ability to thrive in challenging environments and experiencing once-in-a-lifetime activities together.

No matter the place or the purpose of traveling abroad, it will change your life, broaden your world, and create insightful perspectives.

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Food & Travel

Quick and Easy Recipes for Students

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After hitting the books all day or walking over 3 miles throughout campus, your body is ready for some fuel. Don’t mess around trying to find something that looks amazing but takes an Iron Chef to make. Here are a few quick, easy and cheap recipes for you to try.

Mexi Dogs

12 flour tortillas
12 hot dogs
1 cup refried beans
1/2 cup cheese, your choice
1/2 cup salsa, your choice

Directions:

1. Heat beans and spread on a warm tortilla.

2. Place a hot dog on top.

3. Sprinkle cheese and roll up the tortilla like a crepe.

4. Cook in microwave for 2 minutes.

5. Serve with the salsa. Corona is optional.

 

Nuked Scrambled Eggs

4 eggs
3 teaspoons milk
salt and pepper
diced onions

Directions:

1. Beat the eggs.

2. Add milk, salt and pepper.

3. Mix in diced onion.

4. Cook in microwave safe dish and on high for 2 minutes.

5. Stop and stir, be careful may be hot.

6. Cook an additional 1 1/2-2 minutes longer.

 

Dogs N’Taters

6 beef hot dogs, sliced
4 tablespoons oil
1/2 cup diced onion
1 teaspoon garlic salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
4 potatoes, peeled and diced
2 ounces shredded cheddar cheese

Directions:

1. In a large skillet, saute hot dogs in oil until browned.

2. Add onion, garlic salt, and pepper; cook 1 minute.

3. Add potatoes and cook on med, turn potatoes periodically.

4. Continue cooking until potatoes are tender and browned.

5. Sprinkle with cheese.

6. Let the cheese melt into the potatoes.

 

Peanut Butter Fudge (One of the easiest baking recipes ever)

1 – 16 ounce can vanilla frosting

1 – 18 ounce jar peanut butter

Directions:

1. Empty jar of peanut butter in a mixing bowl.

2. Heat vanilla frosting in its container, pull off all the foil lining before, in microwave for about one minute or until fully melted.

3. Pour the melted frosting in the bowl with the peanut butter and mix well.

4. Quickly pour the mix into a 9×13 pan, allow fudge to set, cut into small squares, and munch away!

If you still have no desire to cook any of these super easy dishes , try Dominos. No ingredients necessary.

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Food & Travel

How To Throw a Kegger: Level – Badass

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Throwing a Kegger is like a social rite of passage in a person’s College life.

 

If you do it right, you’ll be deemed a party God by your peers.  If you do it wrong, everyone will probably get severely wasted and still like you anyways, so don’t worry.

 

But we’re not here to teach you how to be mediocre; we’re here to show you how to be the effing Hercules of Keggers.  Let’s do this!

 

First thing’s first.  You need to be semi-responsible and decide where you’re going to throw your Kegger.  You want somewhere reasonably close to Campus so you don’t have a bunch of drunk drivers and stragglers afterwards.  Make sure to tell neighbors you’re having a shindig, and give them your number so they have a chance to call you before they call the cops if your party gets too rowdy.  Block off rooms you don’t want people getting into, and stash valuable belongings in a safe place.

 

Good job being responsible.  Onwards to getting plastered!

 

Look up where you can buy a Keg.  Go get the keg of your choice.  Kegs range anywhere from $50-$100 depending on what kind of beer you choose, as well as an additional $30-$100 refundable deposit to rent the keg and the tap.  Make 100% certain that you leave with the correct tap for your keg (a tap is the apparatus used to open the keg.  It then remains on the keg and the nozzle is used to pour drinks).

 

After you get your keg, you should buy a crap ton of ice.  As soon as you get your keg safely home, put your keg in a big plastic bucket and fill the bucket with ice so your beer chills and isn’t foamy.  It’s also a good idea to put your tap on top of the ice so it gets cold too.  Cold beer + warm tap = foam.  It’s a good idea to let your keg chill for at least 2 hours.

This is what a keg should look like before a party:

 

Now it’s time to round up some peeps.  Invite your good friends of course, but just know that there WILL end up being complete strangers at your party (if they’re hot, it’s not a bad thing, right?).

 

Now for the equivalent of carving a turkey on Thanksgiving – tapping the keg.  If you don’t want to look like a total dumb ass and get beer sprayed all over yourself and party-goers, watch this awesome tutorial:

 

[youtube]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ePCuKCqv5Aw&feature=youtube_gdata_player[/youtube]

 

Are you ready to rock!?

 

It’s almost time to let the good times roll, my friend.  The first five or so cups of “beer” are actually going to be foam from the pressure the beer has created inside the keg.  Pump that sh*t out and rock and roll.

 

At first you shouldn’t have to use the pump to dispense your beer, but from time to time a few pumps are needed.  You might need a beer buddy for this to pump while you push the nozzle.  Always hold the nozzle to the side of your cup to help eliminate foam.

 

Now get out there and enjoy your damn party, my little Hercules.

 Go home snowman, you’re drunk.

Tips:

Unless you’re rolling in dough, it’s okay and common to charge for cups (beer) at your Kegger.  Just designate a buddy to tie a pack of cups to their pants and direct guests their way.  If you want to score points with the ladies, you can let them drink for free.  Tip for this tip:  Choose a color besides red for your cups if charging.  Some people bring their own solo cups trying to outsmart the system.

 

Play some games!  Everyone loves games!  For Keggers, “Flip Cup,” and the ever popular “Beer Pong,” are most appropriate.  Read our Party Games article for directions to these games.

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Food & Travel

Cheap Dorm Room Recipes

eggs-on-toast-recipe

Whether it’s 3am after a night of binge drinking, or 6am before a long day of classes, we all have a ferocious hunger dragon in our stomachs that needs to be slayed.

So you zombie-walk over to your cupboards to find some crackers, then open up your fridge and find…mayo?  If the horrible mixture of last night’s White Russians and Bloody Mary’s hasn’t made you want to vomit, surely cream of crackers will. 

Luckily for you, myfridgefood.com can turn your scant foodstuffs like bread, eggs, and ketchup into a five star “eggs n stuff on bread” – now that’s two servings of awesome. 

So if you’re sick of a peanut butter jelly sandwich, and ramen diet – get creative!  Even if your sole ingredient is beer, myfridgefood.com has a recipe for you called, “drunk.”

Just remember: there’s no way to make that month-old milk taste good. 

Here are some samples of recipes you can probably make with ingredients in your fridge right now.

Eggs on Toast

Ingredients:

1/2 tablespoon butter

1 slice white bread

1 egg

Directions:

1. Butter both sides of bread. Cut a circular hole in the center of the slice of bread, about 2 1/2 inches in diameter.

2. Heat a frying pan or griddle on medium-high heat. When the frying pan is hot, place the bread into the pan and let it brown for one minute. Flip the toast over and let the other side brown for one minute.

3. Break the egg into the hole in the bread. Cook for 2 minutes, or until the egg is cooked to the consistency you prefer.

Grilled Cheese on a Stick 

Ingredients:

9 thin slices sandwich bread (such as Pepperidge Farm Very Thin white bread)

6 deli-style slices cheddar cheese

Melted butter

Directions:

Preheat a grill to medium-high. Arrange 3 thin slices sandwich bread, such as Pepperidge Farm Very Thin white bread, on a work surface. Top each with 1 deli-style slice cheddar cheese, slice bread, another slice cheese and slice bread. Trim and discard the crusts. Brush the sides of each stack with melted butter. Quarter each diagonally to form 12 triangles. Spear a 6-inch skewer into each quarter and butter the cut sides. Grill each side. 

Easy Peanut Butter Cookies 

Ingredients:

1 cup peanut butter

1 cup sugar

1 egg

Directions:

Cream together sugar and egg then add peanut butter, mix well. Drop by teaspoon onto ungreased cookie sheet.  Press with sugar fork.   Bake at 350 for 8-10 minutes. You can use creamy or chunky peanut butter.

…and last, but not least…

Drunk

Ingredients:

A 12-pack of beer.

Directions:

Well, you have no ingredients except beer so really your only option is to get drunk.

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