Winter’s Tour de Force! A Snowy Journey.

Greetings everyone!

Here is a summation my “Winter Tour de Force”.  A snowy  journey.

Old Quebec

Old Quebec

I’m super excited about winter finally coming to an end in the Northern Hemisphere!

Through the winter holidays, I have been sharing my travels to some very “wintery” places.

Many have asked me for names and links to the places I have visited, so this newsletter will include all the details and will hopefully find you on a springlike day.

So, here we go! My “winter tour de force” began slightly before Christmas last year with a trip to Quebec, Canada. Old Quebec is a wonderful and charming city. It is a true winter wonderland at Christmas time. The French-Canadian culture truly shines throughout the city during the holidays making it a phenomenal spot to kick-off the Holidays. And the food is fantastic!

A trip to a culinary mecca such as this would not be complete without attending a cooking class.

So, it was off to the “Ateliers et Saveurs” where I attended a technique class on making delicious macarons. This cooking school offers a variety of classes and is definitely a fun choice of things to do while on a Quebec holiday.

If you never thought about visiting Quebec, Canada around the holidays perhaps after reading about my jubilant experience you will be inspired to change your mind. Click the links below to read more.

Christmas in Old Quebec ~ Joyeux Noël –

Ateliers et Saveurs –

Quebec was just the beginning of a long and even colder winter. Yes, colder!


Santa Claus Village at the Arctic Circle – Rovaniemi, Finland

On December 15th, I voyaged onward to Finland for three weeks. This trip included a 12-hour train ride up to Santa Claus Village at the Arctic Circle. The average temperature during this time of year is approximately 14ºF , -10ºC. This is seriously cold!

I spent Christmas Eve and Christmas Day in Santa Claus Village. It is mostly an outdoors type of place. Even in the extreme cold.

Oddly enough, with the grounds so beautifully decorated and the excitement of Christmas highly prevalent in the air, the cold actually becomes bearable and seems to add fun to the whole experience. ( This is coming from a guy – me, who lived in Miami, Florida for ten years! )

The village was full of an international tourist crowd. We all weathered the cold together as we rang in Christmas, and we even saw the very busy man himself – Father Christmas!

If you find visiting winter wonderlands as a way to have a tremendous amount of family fun, I highly suggest a visit to the actual home of Santa Claus. Santa Claus Village was extremely fun and truly delivers a magical winter wonderland!

You may view the details on this extraordinary Christmas village by clicking the link provided below.

Santa Claus Village at the Arctic Circle! ~ Rovaniemi, Finland

Next stop: Omaha, Nebraska & Helsinki, Finland

Union Pacific

Union Pacific

Shortly after the new year, a Culinary Advisory Board meeting at the world headquarters of ConAgra Foods popped up on my radar.

So, I flew to Omaha, Nebraska to attend. The purpose of this trip was to develop a strategy for projects for the upcoming year. It was a super successful event!

Click below to see the blog post for more details.

On The Road Again: Omaha, Nebraska & Helsinki, Finland


Lahti, Finland

Lahti, Finland

In February, I traveled back to Scandinavia. This time I took a day trip from Helsinki, Finland to Lahti, the ski jump competition capital of Finland.

It attracts many locals and tourists alike that all share the love for the sport of skiing – and ski jumping.

The main reason for my visit to Lahti was to spend time with a friend of mine from Sicily who was working at the restaurant Mamma Maria.



Mamma Maria Restaurant

Mamma Maria Restaurant

And, Mamma Maria, what a wonderful surprise this whole day turned out to be!

Who knew that one would find such a warm Italian gem of a restaurant in the middle of a freezing cold ski town in Finland.

See the link below for the fun and delicious details!

Mamma Maria! | Lahti, Finland





Inspirational Quote


“Respect yourself enough to walk away from anything that no longer serves  you,  grows you, or makes you happy.” ~ Robert Tew