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7 Reasons Why Traveling Alone Is Something You Should Do Right Now

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Solo, Airport, Travel

7 Reasons Why Traveling Alone Is Something You Should Do Right Now

By James Carsey

You are finally able to visit the dream destination that you have been obsessing over. You’ve been saving all year and your two weeks of vacation has finally been approved. If everything goes as planned you will be off on a much-anticipated journey to a destination of your choice. Australia’s Great barrier reef? Or is it the picturesque villages along the Amalfi Coast? Perhaps you want to see the natural beauty of the Red Wood forest in Big Sur?

Planned, packed, and ready to depart with a group of friends, college roommate, co-workers, or your best friend. Suddenly, the excursion is not so amazing when three hours into the trip you realize that your choice of travel partner may have been a fatal mistake and no one wants that.

Whether it is the mild friction from sharing a hotel room or your travel partner’s annoying habits you didn’t know existed; we have all been there. You would rather stroll along the powdery white beaches in Tulum and increase your vitamin D intake while your travel mate would rather eat, drink, shop, and repeat. What to do?

The history buff in you has always been curious about the 13 Tombs of Ming Dynasty in Beijing, but your fiancée would rather take part in the Peking Opera and Peking gourmet duck dinner tour. Opposites don’t always attract especially when traveling.

Traveling with friends and family can be rewarding and further strengthen the bond with shared memories and unique experiences. However, in some cases, the outcome of partnered or group travel can be disastrous and the dynamics can potentially damage friendships and family relationships.

A sensible remedy to your travel buddy woes is quite simple actually, travel alone. It’s a hard pill to swallow for most of us because getting away with friends and family is what vacation is all about. However, it can be just as rewarding and the drama-free memories you create will be all yours. Here are seven reasons to motivate you to travel solo.

You Can Be Completely Selfish

In this instance, it is completely okay to make everything all about you. You have full permission to be selfish and self-absorbed. One of the dynamics that causes group tension during travel is someone acting selfishly or accusing someone else of acting selfishly. When you are traveling alone, you don’t have to consider what others want to do or see along the way. The agenda is yours! You can sit at the corner café in Florence and sip on your espresso all morning if you want.

In everyday life, we have to take into consideration our bosses, children, siblings, spouses, and significant others’ feelings, needs, and desires. It can be draining and at the end of the day when your well is empty. Taking a solo vacation is the perfect medicine for this dilemma as it replenishes your much depleted “me time” and restores you back to your original self.

You Will Manage Your Own Time (Or Not Manage)

Timelines and scheduling itineraries while on vacation can be challenging. Especially when you are juggling larger groups which move at varied paces or trying to determine who wants to do what and where. You like to arrive early, get a good seat, and avoid the crowds while others in your pack like to push the envelope and cram as many things possible into three hours. Opposite styles of time management and varied personalities always complicate group dynamics. It’s not uncommon to feel that you need a vacation after a vacation.

When you are traveling alone you have more freedom to create the schedule that fits who you are and what you want to accomplish. You can sleep in, skip breakfast, and wake at whatever time you want. Or, you can get up at the crack of dawn for that paddleboard sunrise experience. For the most part, time is yours and you can manage it any way you want.

You Will Learn Something About Yourself

Some members of your group are skilled at navigation, while others are better at driving.  Perhaps they have better people skills than you and therefore make better ambassadors. There is always a food and wine expert in the group or someone more adventurous, or funnier. These are just some of the traits and roles within a group of travelers. Chances are you don’t have all these attributes and talents. In most cases when traveling in a group you rely on the strength of someone’s attribute to get you and the rest of the group through traveling scenarios. The wine connoisseur orders the wine. The best navigator normally leads the group through the confusing streets to find an isolated café.

When traveling alone you don’t have the luxury of relying on group traits to get you through situations. If you have a fear of navigating city streets without a GPS, you are all you have. Here is a chance to turn inward and ask yourself some thought-provoking questions. Breakthrough that comfort zone!

If you’re honest with yourself and practice self-reflection, then you may learn something. Maybe after all those years of believing you don’t know how to start up conversations so easily was completely wrong. Because of the solo trip you dug deep and worked through the insecurities. You made some new friends because of your newfound ability to strike up a friendly conversation with strangers.

You Will Feel Less Stress And Guilt Compared To Traveling With Groups

Part of going away on vacation is to blow off steam and forget about all the responsibilities in life and adulthood. Sometimes, when you are on vacation, you want to do your own thing or explore a destination on your own terms. The whole point of a vacation is to get a sense of freedom. When traveling with a group it tends to be shared-freedom, and not necessarily your own. Committing to their to-do list and vacation desires can be stressful.

How many times have you gone away with a group and said, all I want to do today is lay on the beach? How did it make you feel when your simple request was not honored? Traveling alone reduces the stress you get from following someone else’s agenda or navigating a complicated groupthink. In solo travel, you are your own boss and you get to call all the shots. You may have some stress from the new experience of being alone but it’s not as severe as the stress you experience while trying to accomplish everyone’s itinerary on a daily basis.

You Will Save Money

Sometimes vacationing with friends calls for lavish meals with hefty alcohol charges. When a big check is split five ways you don’t always get treated fairly. You end up paying $200 for grilled salmon and a glass of wine. It’s easier to stay on a food budget when you are the only one eating.

Tips for solo traveling are widely publicized. From books to travel websites to blogs, you will not find a shortage of information on solo travel. Conduct a quick Google search and it seems as if there is a cultish underground of people that enjoy dispensing solo travel advice.

Frugal Travel Tips

  • Independently owned, and smaller boutique hotels are more open to negotiating room pricing. Always call the hotel directly and never use the 800 number.
  • Use one of two negotiating strategies. Call the hotel directly in advance or wait until the last minute when checking in at the front desk. Both have been proven to work.
  • When booking airfare, wait until the last minute. Travel websites like Kayak.com and Skyscanner.com offer last minute flight deals to save some money on airfare.
  • One-way tickets are cheaper and easier to obtain as a single traveler. Destination flexibility is always key. You might find inexpensive flights to interesting places.

You Will Make New Friends

If you are feeling lonely or you need some face to face time with other humans, there are some great ways to meet new people when traveling alone. Many solo travelers say it’s easier to meet new people because you appear more approachable than a group. You will also be more inclined to start up a conversation with the people you meet on your travels. So, you’re halfway there.

Hostel traveling is not for everyone. However, experienced solo travelers say an occasional stay at a hostel is a great way to save money and meet new people while you travel. Other friend-making tips include:

  • Sightseeing or day activity tours allow you to interact with strangers over the shared experience.
  • Make arrangements to meet old friends as you travel. A night on the town or short sleepovers may be just the right amount of interaction you need.
  • Eat your meal at the bar and you will definitely strike up some conversations with strangers.
  • Join a local Meetup group online if you’re really looking for a social experience.

You Will Be Empowered

Whether you traveled alone on a small domestic trip for a few days or you visited multiple countries by yourself over the course of several months you achieved something unique and you should be proud of yourself. You created your own drama-free itinerary and you most likely worked through some mild fears along the way. Only you know what you gained and what you lost. Regardless, give yourself a pat on the back for achieving something so bold and memorable as solo travel.

Solo travel is a small but growing demographic worth exploring. With some creative thinking and doing your destination homework, you can design your travel plans specifically for you. If frugality is your game plan there are cost-cutting measures you can take to create the memories you want. Don’t be nervous. Test the waters and book your very first solo trip today! You may love it.

What is MDMA? Is it Dangerous?

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pills, drugs

What is MDMA?

MDMA, also known as Molly or Ecstasy on the streets. The scientific name for it is 3.4 Methylenedioxy-N-Methylamphetamine. It usually comes in pill, powder, or crystal form. 

MDMA is supposed to contain the pure chemical. Although, many manufactures include other substances that mimic the MDMA effects. This can be very dangerous to the human brain. 

What are the adulterants in MDMA?

Like mentioned before, there are ways to mimic MDMA and these include other substances such as:

  • Amphetamine
  • MDA
  • Methamphetamine
  • PCP
  • Caffeine 
  • Cocaine
  • CPP
  • Paracetamol 
  • 4-FA

What does MDMA do to your body?

MDMA affects your neurotransmitters in your brain that control your reflexes, emotion, and serotonin. The effects of MDMA include loss of appetite, insomnia, empathy, and sociability. 

It releases a great deal of serotonin which makes people feel empathy towards others. Often people feel as if they have fallen in love with another person. It creates happiness and generates a great deal of friendliness. Your sense of comfort with others skyrockets.

Since your body is making so much serotonin, your body also destroys a lot of serotonin. When you experience a comedown, your brain is deprived of serotonin. This can make you feel body aches, depressed, and tired. Some people have reported that they are in a low mood for 1-3 days after they experience a comedown. 

MDMA can cause auditory and visual changes. The pupils will dilate making the eyes look very round and large. As a result, light sensitivity plays a huge role when on this drug. It will seem as if there are halos around, making the lights even brighter than they are. MDMA does not cause any hallucinations and no psychedelic visuals. Depending on the dosage, some people experience vibrations in vision, blurriness, and softness. 

People tend to have an increased tactile perception, meaning anything they touch will feel incredible. For example, a fuzzy blanket will feel extra special causing the person to keep wanting to touch it.

How Long do the Effects Last?

The onset is usually 30 to 60 minutes. The effects can last 3-8 hours. After the comedown, an afterglow can occur, making it feel as if you are still on ecstasy. Although this is typically seen with people that have had a small does with no re-dose. 

Why do people take MDMA?

The reason why people take MDMA varies from person to person. Molly is considered a party drug of choice for many, while others find they want to experiment and see what the pill does.

Recreational

The club scene may be the most popular place where people make the drug exchange. While it is illegal and club owners are not happy to find the dealers passing out party favors, they know it’s what brings people in through the door. When people take molly, it heightens their auditory and visual capacity which makes it a perfect concoction for clubbing. 

Interpersonal

Others like to enjoy it at home with friends or with a partner. A home is a place where people feel most comfortable experimenting because of the environment. Since clubs are never predictable and taking MDMA can be dangerous if a conflict arises, people feel safest doing it at home with close people.

Therapy

MDMA can be used solo with a therapist to treat PTSD. Currently, some states are trying to legalize MDMA for therapy uses. The reason why it is great for PTSD therapy is that communication goes up and helps bring awareness to new opportunities in life. 

The Negative effects of MDMA

MDMA was scheduled as an illegal drug due to its dangerous effects. People started being creative on how to keep these drugs on the streets and made them with alternative substances such as caffeine, amphetamines, and sometimes psychedelics. 

What many people do not know about is the comedown and how badly it affects your daily life after consumption. 

The negative effects of MDMA:

  • Jaw Clenching
  • Appetite Reduction
  • Dry Mouth
  • Sweating
  • Difficulty Concentrating
  • Insomnia
  • Muscle Tension
  • Impaired Balance
  • Anxiety
  • Inappropriate Behavior
  • Chills

Does MDMA increase or decrease anxiety?

While many will say it decreases anxiety, that is true to some extent. When the initial come up occurs, the body will sense that something is off and unusual. This can drive someone to have anxiety and make them feel uneasy. But once that come up is over, a sense of relief overcomes the body and the individual can then relax without an ounce of anxiety. 

Now, say the individual is in an environment where stress can be a variable, then the individual can feel anxiety overpowering their mind. This is common for users that have taken a larger dose and didn’t plan to feel a certain way in a particular setting. This can cause panic attacks. 

After a few breaths, and passing time, the anxiety will go away. 

Doses

Light: 75-100 mg

Common: 100-150 mg

Strong: 150- 175 mg

Redosing is very common but strongly discouraged. The rule of thumb is to re-dose only 1 time with half of the initial dose. 

MDMA is definitely a drug that can make you feel euphoric and happy. But it is also a drug that is not suitable for every weekend. With the amount of serotonin release and destruction, it can permanently damage your neurotransmitters. The key is to wait 3 months before dosing again. This gives your brain enough time to generate new brain cells so you could feel the “magic” happen again. *Legal and illegal drugs are not advised in this article.*

How to start a Cannabis Dispensary

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weed, cannabis

Cannabis has become legal in many states and thus paves the path for massive business opportunities in the field of medical marijuana. According to a Forbes article, the cannabis industry has the potential of generating business worth more than $30 billion by 2025. Therefore, if you have an entrepreneurial spirit and own good risk appetite and guts to invest some decent capital, then starting a cannabis dispensary is lucrative and makes perfect sense in the growing marijuana economy. However, just like any new business, a cannabis dispensary startup is also exposed to business challenges involving initial capital, business laws, medical and food licenses, and operational costs. But, no need to worry. The following pointers will give you a step-by-step approach to starting a cannabis dispensary.

1. Cannabis Knowledge

After understanding the legalities and finances, the next step is to learn about cannabis and its products. It would help if you learned about the different types of cannabis and their benefits, how the cannabinoids react with the body, and also your customer base, i.e., the potential prospects who would buy from you. Most new customers will be unaware of medical marijuana and its benefits. Some of them might even be skeptical. As a business owner, you have to educate them about the benefits of cannabis usage and how your cannabis dispensary can help them with their problems through high-quality cannabis products. Through your acquired knowledge about cannabis, you can win the trust of your customers and ensure long-term customer relationships. For gaining academic experience on cannabis, you can try the courses from various online cannabis universities or attend classroom programs from universities like the Oaksterdam University and the Clover Leaf University.

2. Research the Legalities of starting a cannabis business

legal

The most significant risk of running a cannabis dispensary is the fact that cannabis is still subject to federal laws and may be illegal in some parts of the country. For example, the national classification of medical marijuana falls under a Schedule 1 drug under the FCSA. Therefore, as per federal laws, cannabis seeds cannot be prescribed. However, state laws may be lenient in this case. Therefore, operating the cannabis seeds business can be tricky, and we recommend taking an expert lawyer’s help before starting the company to understand the legal terms. 

Apart from the legalities of the drug itself, there are other parameters to look at, such as if you have a criminal record previously, you might find it challenging to start the business. Other local government laws include cannabis dispensaries should be away from public places like schools, churches, etc. Even for advertising, you should be aware of the state regulations regarding marijuana business signages in public space. Also, you need to know the cannabis sales limit per customer imposed by the state. For example, in the state of California, legally, citizens can buy only up to 1 ounce per day of cannabis. Your supply trucks should also have an exclusive marijuana transportation license.

3. Research the Financial’s of starting a cannabis business

Apart from the legal risks, the cannabis dispensary also comes with financial risks. The initial capital investment can cost you upwards of half a million dollars. Getting investors on board is challenging. Due to the mixed popularities of the cannabis business, some banks will not lend you money or allow you to operate your business through them. Therefore, It would help you if you take services of reputed financial firms & try managing your business through cash. One should also make a list of working capital required to start this business. It can start from basics like investing in a good insurance policy,video-surveillance cameras and anti-burglar alarm systems, etc.

4. Draft a Business Plan

There is a common saying that a written down goal is already half achieved. The same goes for the online dispensary Canada business. It would be best if you write down a thorough business plan for your dispensary. If your business plan looks good, it will attract investors to pour capital into your venture. A solid business plan consists of proper market analysis and research on the cannabis industry. The market research should include customer demographics along with their needs and how you plan to advertise your product to them. The market analysis also leads to a study of the current competitors and industry trends in the cannabis business. The competitors give you an idea to plan your product to sell and appeal to customers in a differentiated manner. It then brings you to a robust sales and marketing plan to determine what is your USP and how to market your products. 

After chalking out the sales plan, you then move on to writing the Management and Operations part of your business. Your potential investors should know who you plan to put on the leadership boards. The Operations section involves details regarding your shop location, employees, manufacturing processes, suppliers, transportation, and inventories. After defining all these comes the money part. The Financial section of your business plan should include your income statement, your balance sheet, and your cash flow sheet. Remember to summarize all the essential details into an Executive Summary. It is the section that will be first read by your potential investors. Add enough charts, pictures, and flowcharts to convey your message across. 

5. Manpower

For a successful Canada weed dispensary, you will need to build a team of people. Mainly your workforce will consist of 2 types of resources: one handling your day-to-day operations and the other handling support services. The human resources should be skilled, loyal, and should have the same vision for success as you have for your business. 

The day-to-day operations staff include budtenders who have the technical knowledge about cannabis strains and their uses and can demonstrate their expert knowledge to customers to keep them happy. Managers and administrative assistants form another part of the operations staff. Managers can keep a team together, whereas admin. Assistants can do a whole range of daily activities such as bookkeeping, IT, or even front desk office work. Apart from these, you also need a team of directors and influencers who can bring business for you through networking and visiting local authorities and key contacts. Do not forget the Security staff in your day-to-day operations list. It would help if you kept your employees and workplace safe and secure. So hire trustworthy security staff.

The support services mainly include legal and finance teams. As mentioned above, you need a good lawyer and an Accountant to make sure that your cannabis business navigates smoothly through the various legal and financial risks. A good accountant can help you save a lot of money by doing your tax filing most efficiently. Your lawyer might also need a compliance officer to make sure that your cannabis dispensary follows all the state and federal regulations diligently.

6. Find a location to operate from

A perfect cannabis location is the one that is in line with all the state and federal regulations that you researched in Step 2. To minimize the cost of business, you should start by renting and not buying a property. While renting, make sure you inform your landlord that you are going to operate a cannabis dispensary to ensure that he/she supports it. Your location should be easy to find for your customers. To search for the ideal location for your cannabis dispensary, contact real estate brokers who are experts in finding workspaces for cannabis businesses. 

7. Marketing Campaign

working, computer

Once you have got a good knowledge of the cannabis industry and have got a strong team of people, it is time for marketing. Marketing is essential to set up the right image of the cannabis industry to the people. Digital marketing helps in attracting and engaging new customers through various channels. Digital marketing can be done using social media, directories, and other tactics. With the help of marketing, you must be able to deliver quality services and customer satisfaction. To develop your brand identity, you must promote the best qualities of your cannabis dispensary. Think about the points that distinguish your brand from the others. Think about the cannabis products that your customers won’t find anywhere else but with you. Also, understand that no matter how good your product is, if your customer’s experience is not good with you, then they won’t come back to your brand. 

Based on these pointers, you must design the inside and outside of your dispensary, your website, business logo, and business name. Remember to put out your brand’s policy in the form of visuals. The interiors of your store or the website are the first interaction a customer gets when they come to your dispensary. So, it is vital to make it appealing so that the customer would stay and love to re-visit. Be consistent with the quality of your products, which helps in maintaining your brand’s status.

The website is important for establishing credibility. In today’s world, every business has an online presence in the form of a website and other social media channels. While designing your website, you must color-coordinate it with your dispensary’s logo. Make it simple, creative, and user-friendly. The customer should be able to find what you are offering easily. They must be able to understand your brand’s mission and vision through your website. Do not irritate the visitors on your site with too many pop-ups. Website blogs should be frequently updated and promoted on social media channels. Along with your website, you should also have a strong social media presence. You must add your cannabis dispensary on social media channels like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin, and Pinterest. Make your social media channels engaging using creative posts. Your posts can be an image or video format. 

Finally, there are a lot of rules and regulation changes happening in the field of cannabis marketing. Keep yourself up-to-date with these rules. The advertising rules for cannabis are strict as compared to other businesses. Specific marketing platforms have completely banned cannabis advertising due to governmental status.

8. Grand Opening!

Now that you have understood the risks and benefits of starting a cannabis dispensary, it is time for you to open your dispensary. You have got all the pieces of information on advertising, hiring people, and understanding the legalities. It is time for launching your business. One of the best ways is to start with a grand opening. Throwing a grand opening is your opportunity to make the first impression. So, you have to make sure that the first impression is positive and lasts long. Think of creative ways for a grand opening, i.e., something more than cake and coffee. You can organize a backyard BBQ or hire a DJ. You must invite the local community people and other cannabis brands too. 

You must also consider talking about your brand, your team, and give the products while hosting. It is essential to recognize your team, who is the backbone of the business. Your team should feel how important they are for the success of your company. Introduce them to visitors at the grand opening. People getting to know you and your business are crucial for the growth of your business. 

Give product information and the different strains of cannabis seeds people can get from your store. You can also share information on the various benefits of taking cannabis, how to purchase cannabis from your store, the latest findings, and who should be taking cannabis. Educating them on common topics will clean many misconceptions regarding cannabis. You can collect the contact details of the visitors to mail them about offers or your website blogs. Your enthusiasm and commitment are going to attract more people.   

Conclusions:

The above are the steps to start a cannabis dispensary. With the regulations and legalizations, running a cannabis dispensary can be challenging. But with the right business plan, you can be successful in this field. Come up with creative ideas to reach more consumers, maybe even come out with a CBD only dispensary. Incorporating new elements to your dispensary and website will help you grow a successful business.

How does Cannabis help with Arthritis?

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Arthritis, Cannabis, Health

Are you or someone around you suffering from arthritis? Are you looking for organic ways to alleviate the pain?

According to the data provided by the Arthritis Foundation, over 54 million adults and 300,000 children in the United States alone suffer from the debilitating and excruciating pain of arthritis. On a global level, there are 91.2 million people who have come under the grasp of arthritis. Despite the medicinal advancements and therapies available today, the most shocking part of it is that the numbers are only growing.

While a majority of doctors may ask the patients to resort to painkillers to combat pain, they can be addictive. A lot of people are looking for organic ways to treat the pain, and cannabis can come to their aid. Cannabis is helping many people all around the globe to fight their battle against arthritis with its therapeutic properties. Do you wonder if cannabis can help you? Well, here is everything you should know about using cannabis for arthritis.

Joint pain, arthritis

What is Cannabis?

Cannabis has been in the grey area for decades. It was not until a few years ago that this magical plant managed to get popular and legal in many countries. Now cannabis has become a household name, with people enjoying its benefits.

If you are still unaware of it, cannabis is a psychoactive plant that originated in the South-eastern countries. The plant has three different species, Sativa, Indica, and Ruderalis. Cannabis is gaining popularity owing to its medicinal properties that are helping people solve many physical and psychological disorders. The green plant contains over 600 different chemical compounds, out of which there are more than 65 cannabinoids. It is these cannabinoids that decide how cannabis will affect your body.

Among the many cannabinoids, CBD and THC are the more prominent ones. THC or Tetrahydrocannabinol is a high-inducing psychoactive element. It can induce a mind-altering high while calming your body and mind. On the contrary, CBD or cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive medicinal compound. CBD contains many nutrients that can enrich your body from within while helping you treat a wide array of health issues. While Canada weed has high THC content, Indica strains have more of CBD, and Ruderalis has a mix of both.

weed, cannabis, marijuana

What is Arthritis?

People often tend to refer to joint inflammation like arthritis, but in reality, it is much more. Arthritis is a wider term used to describe 200 different conditions that can affect your joints, the tissues surrounding it, and any other connective tissue. It can cause immense pain, decreased motion, stiffness in the joints, and swelling in or around joints.

There can be many different types of arthritis, but we can broadly categorize it into the following:

1. Degenerative arthritis:

Degenerative arthritis is commonly known as osteoarthritis. It is a type of disorder where the cartilage or the cushioning on the ends of the bones wears off. It leads to the bones rubbing off against each other, causing pain, stiffness, and swelling. Over time, the joints lose all strength, and the pain becomes permanent.

People who have a previous injury, excessive weight, family history, and old age can be prone to developing osteoarthritis. You can prevent it by staying active, maintaining your weight, and avoiding repetitive movements. Similarly, people who are suffering from osteoarthritis can find some relief with hot and cold therapies, pain killers, and physical exercises. Many doctors today also recommend using medicinal marijuana to treat it.

2. Inflammatory arthritis:

Your immune system performs the task of generating internal inflammation that keeps all infections and bacteria away. When it comes to inflammatory arthritis, the immune system does not work properly. It starts attacking the joints with inflammation resulting in erosion of the joints. Inflammatory arthritis affects not only the joints but also the internal organs. Rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, psoriatic arthritis, and gout are all kinds of inflammatory arthritis.

Both environmental factors and genetics can lead to this type of arthritis. Doctors usually recommend more than one medication to reduce the damage caused by the immune system and to manage the symptoms. You can check out the best CBD pills online to manage the arthritis-related pain.

3. Metabolic arthritis:

The human cells and some foods contain purines. When the body starts breaking down this substance, it leads to the production of uric acid. Excessive uric acid can form crystals in the body, which can cause immense pain or a gout attack. While gouts are temporary, they can become chronic if the level of uric acid does not go down.

4. Infectious arthritis:

Infectious arthritis can happen when a fungus, bacteria, or virus enters the joint and causes inflammation. Food poisoning, eating contaminated food, hepatitis C, gonorrhea, and chlamydia can make you prone to bacteria that cause infectious arthritis. If the infection gets detected timely and you take antibiotics, you can gain control over the infection.

How does Cannabis work?

Amid plenty of physical therapies and medications, cannabis is emerging as an effective natural solution for arthritis.

The human body contains a unique endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is a complex cell-signaling system. It is the ECS that regulates your memory, sleep, appetite, mood, and even reproductive health. The system produces two natural cannabinoids, known as Anandamide (AED) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG) cannabinoids, to interact with the cells, hormones, and organs of your body. The endocannabinoid system sends these cannabinoids throughout the body. They bind themselves to the CB1 and CB2 receptors to change how you feel or react to external stimuli. While you can find the CB1 receptors in the central nervous system, the CB2 receptors are present in the peripheral nervous system, majorly in the immune cells.

When the level of these cannabinoids change, it can change your mood, making you feel sad and low. It can even heighten the pain that you experience.

The cannabinoids made by your body and the ones present in cannabis are identical. When you consume cannabis, you also ingest cannabinoids like CBD and THC. They attach to the receptors to alter your body process and emotions. THC is a psychoactive element that binds to both CB1 and CB2 receptors. It can get you high and also reduce your stress and anxiety. CBD, on the other hand, ensures that the cannabinoids do not break down. The medicinal properties of CBD can help reduce pain and inflammation. There are plenty of cannabis strains and cannabis products that you can get from a trusted company like weedsmart that can get you relief.

Can Cannabis help with arthritis?

The medicinal benefits of cannabis also extend to arthritis. Many people who have this joint disorder report benefitting from this magical plant. Here is how cannabis can help deal with arthritis:

1. Help treat rheumatoid arthritis:

Rheumatoid arthritis is the most common form of this disorder. There is no cure for this auto-immune disease. Over the last few years, the doctors have come up with a cannabis-based medicine, called Sativex, to treat rheumatoid arthritis. It can stop the immune system from attacking the joints, thus preventing the disease. By using cannabis, you can also reduce the pain and stiffness in joints.

2. Reduce debilitating pain:

Arthritis can cause immense pain affecting your mobility. It also disrupts your normal life by hindering you from carrying out the daily tasks. Using cannabis can help bring you instant relief from the pain. The cannabinoids present in cannabis bind with the receptors and change how your brain reacts to the external stimuli, thus bringing down the pain instantly and giving you much-needed relief.

3. Bring down inflammation:

Cannabis is also known for its anti-inflammatory properties. The cannabinoids interact with the receptors to bring down inflammation. They attach themselves to the various organs of your body to initiate change. When these cannabinoids reach the bloodstream, they can go to the affected area to bring down inflammation.

4. Improves muscle soreness:

Soreness and stiffness in muscles are very common for people who are suffering from any type of arthritis. Taking cannabis can bring down the pain, and also help get over the soreness in your muscles and joints. If you were not able to move freely, regular and regulated intake of cannabis could help you get back your mobility back as well. Cannabis can also help repair your muscles if there is any damage.

How to use cannabis for arthritis?

Cannabis is a very versatile plant that you can use in multiple ways. If you are trying to figure out the most suitable method of consuming cannabis for arthritis pain, here are a few easy ideas for you:

1. Orally:

The most convenient way of consuming cannabis is through oral methods. With these methods, the cannabis passes through the digestive system and reaches the affected body part via the bloodstream. Keep in mind that once going through the digestive system your body may process the cannabinoids differently.

  • Oil: The cannabis oil and CBD oil are readily available on the market today. You can directly ingest a few drops of oil or take it sublingually. For sublingual consumption, you can put 5-6 drops of the oil under your tongue and hold it for 30 seconds before swallowing it in. The capillaries under your tongue will quickly absorb the cannabinoids and send them to the body part where you feel pain, to bring instant relief. The effects of the oil kick in within 15-25 minutes and the relief might last for 4 to 6 hours.
  • Capsules: If you don’t like the nutty taste of cannabis, you can opt for CBD capsules. They let you enjoy the same goodness of the plant without experiencing the flavor. The capsules take longer to start showing effects, but you can also feel the effects for about 6 to 8 hours.

2. Topicals:

Creams or lotions that have cannabis-infused in them are called topicals. They are an excellent way to treat localized pain. You can directly apply them to your skin to get the desired results. Your skin absorbs the cannabinoids, and they bind with the CB2 receptors present in the skin.  The cannabinoids start relieving you of the pain and muscle soreness instantly. If you want something more natural, you can use cannabis oil directly on your skin. The onset of cannabis topicals is 10-20 minutes, and you can keep the pain away for at least 3 hours.

3. Edibles:

Edibles are alternative food and drinks that have cannabis in them. The markets today are brimming with food products like gummy bears, cookies, brownies, and even coffee that have cannabis-infused in them. You can either indulge in these ready-made edibles or make your own at home. To make your edibles, all you have to do is add the cannabis oil or isolate it to your favorite food and drink. Since the body has to digest the edible first, it can take a while to start feeling the effect. Depending upon the concentration of cannabis you consume, the effects can last for 5 to 10 hours. Alternatively, one can also buy seeds online and incorporate them into their daily diet in various cooking dishes to reap benefits.

4. Inhaling:

The oldest method of consuming cannabis is smoking it. People have been smoking the plant for centuries, for both recreational and medicinal reasons alike. Here is the traditional and the modern method of inhaling cannabis:

  • Smoking: You can roll the plant matter in a joint or blunt to produce smoke that you can inhale. With the smoke, you also inhale the cannabinoids which go into your lungs and then pass through your bloodstream. They travel through the bloodstream to the affected area in an instant and relieve you of the pain. You can feel the effects of cannabis kick in instantly and get instant relief from the pain.
  • Vaping: Vaping is the modern way of inhaling cannabinoids. You can invest in an electric vaporizer that heats the substance to produce vapor that you can inhale. Different kinds of vapes can allow you to heat either the cannabis plant, its concentrates, or a vape juice that contains cannabinoids. Vaping is a much healthier and convenient alternative as it avoids combustion. It is the fastest way to get relief since you get high potency of cannabinoids in every frag, which gets to the affected area in no time and the effects can last for 1-2 hours.

cbd, weed, oil

Final Thoughts

Arthritis is a common ailment that is affecting the lives of millions of people around the globe. It can cause excruciating pain and discomfort, disrupting your normal life. If you are tired of using synthetic painkillers and switching between therapies, you can opt for the organic goodness of cannabis. It can help you heal from within, repair the torn muscles, and get rid of the pain and stiffness without any toxic effects. You can consult with your physician and start using cannabis to live a better life. Get yourself cannabis or cannabis products today from an online store or local dispensary and kick arthritis out of your life for good.

Top 5 BEST Doughnuts FOODIES Must Try in Miami!!

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Doughnuts, Miami

The Doughnut or donut as latter spelling often seen in American English is a type of fried dough confectionery. It is popular in many countries and can be prepared in many different forms, though they are usually made from flour dough and usually deep-fried in a ring shape, but can also be ball-shaped (“doughnut holes”). Other types of batters can also be used, and various toppings and flavorings are used for different types, such as sugar, chocolate, or maple glazing. Doughnuts may also include water, leavening, eggs, milk, sugar, oil, shortening, and natural or artificial flavors. The earliest origins to the modern doughnuts are generally traced back to the olykoek (“oil(y) cake”) Dutch settlers brought with them to early New York. Which closely resembled later ones, but did not yet have their current ring shape. What we know for sure is however they’re made or decorated we love the sweet end results.

1. The Salty Donuts

50 NW 23rd St, Miami, FL 33127

Salty Donuts is not your typical donut shop, they are serving up flavors like Guava Cheese, Chocolate Hazelnut, Cookies and Creme, Carrot Cake (gluten-free), and Strawberry. They have many different flavors and options ranging from regular brioche donuts to vegan and gluten-free.

They are within walking distance from Wynwood walls and are a perfect place to stop for a sweet treat after visiting the murals. And no need to fear about getting bored of their flavors on top of their day to day donuts they also have a huge selection of seasonal flavors such as the must-try in October, pumpkin spice, or old fashioned chocolate cake. They serve not just donuts but are raising the bar from the mundane dough and generic colored icing plus sprinkles to gastronomic and artisanal heights with specialty, seasonal ingredient, even spiked fillings, and 3-D finishes.

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2. Mojo Donuts

8870 Bird Rd, Miami, FL 33165

If you have seen Diners, Drive-ins, and dives then you know Guy Fieri has good taste. So when he makes a spot at a little donut shop in Miami, you have to too. Now while Guy had their “Abuelita” donut which is filled with rice pudding, that is not their only amazing donut. They are also serving up s’mores and flan donuts too! Every donut made fresh, they are not too sweet or soft they are just perfect. And just like their donuts their design and decor fit the location and area perfectly! With creative and tasty creations and over 30 types, there is definitely something for everyone.

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3. Honeybee Doughnuts

7388 Red Rd, Miami, FL 33143

Honeybee isn’t just a name to them, they are making a beehive donuts! Honeybee Doughnuts is serving up amazing doughnuts with soft and fresh dough and remarkably fresh ingredients at any time of the day. They have the Signature Honeybee made with a raised doughnut and filled with fresh whipped cream & local honey or it’s 90 Calorie cousin the Gluten-Free Beehive made with Fage Greek Yogurt & Organic Blueberries. They also have Nutella, Apple Pie, and many more flavors served daily not to mention their Wednesday/Saturday Specials.  With amazingly creative doughnuts using local and fresh ingredients, there’s no way you could go wrong.

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4. 3dough5

1555 SW 8th St, Miami, FL 33135

A super cute doughnut shop in the heart of Little Havana? I definitely have to check out this place.

3dough5 has a ton of doughnut selections, as well as coffees too. Bacon maple bar, chocolate sprinkles, Oreo, and super smooth and creamy coffee? Yes Please! And if you want to mix your sweet with your savory they also have a breakfast sandwich that you can get on a glazed doughnut! Bacon, egg, and cheese on a doughnut what more could you want for the perfect breakfast experience? It’s safe to say this is not your basic doughnut shop. They are even serving up CBD coffee options as well. There were so many creations and flavors that you don’t get at normal donut shops and in Little Havana, it is easier for them to stand out is the only doughnut store is already making it unique but after seeing what doughnuts are offered here it is easily the best choice.

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5. Mini Donut World

8763 Stirling Rd, Cooper City, FL 33328

Big flavor in a mini donut? Sign us up! Mini Donut World is a cute little shop that is making donuts your way. They offer vanilla cake donuts during the week and chocolate and blueberry ones as well on the weekends. Then you get to choose your glaze, what type of drizzle you would like, and then what toppings from their 20 + topping options. Though the donuts themselves are not made to order but are customized and prepared for you. The base of the donut was cake, fluffy and delicious. Each mini donut had its own complex flavor and tasted completely different from the other ones. The toppings delicious, not overly sweet or overpowering, but perfectly balanced with the donut. Fun little place if you’re looking to experience different flavors of donuts. The smaller size makes it doable to try different ones without feeling guilty.

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5 BEST Cubano Places FOODIES Must Try in Miami!!

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Cubano, Miami

The Cuban sandwich is a variation of a ham and cheese sandwich that likely originated in Tampa or Key West catering to a large amount of Cuban workers. Key West and Tampa are two early Cuban immigrant communities in Florida built around the cigar industry. Later on, Cuban immigrants brought it to Miami, where it is also very popular. The Cuban is made with ham, roasted pork, Swiss cheese, pickles, mustard, and Cuban bread. Sometimes salami is added on in Tampa, due to a large Italian population. It is believed that the sandwich was a common lunch food for workers in both the cigar factories and sugar mills of Cuba and the cigar factories of Key West by the 1860s. While we are unsure of the exact origin of the sandwich we are very grateful it was created.

1. Franky’s Deli

2596 W 84th St Hialeah, FL 33016

When a tiny Hialeah sandwich shop lands on Yelp’s Top 100 places to eat in the US in 2017 you don’t walk over to try it, you run. When serving everything from Lobster Bisque to Cuban Sandwiches it’s no wonder why they got to the top 100. The Cuban Sandwich could be described as Hot, cheesy, tangy from the mustard, and everything you want in a good Cuban. Franky’s Deli is also family-owned and will not disappoint no matter what you get.

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2. Sanguich De Miami

2057 SW 8th St Miami, FL 33135

El Sanguich is just not a Cuban sandwich shop. It is a time machine that takes you back to Havana in the early 1950s. The menu upgrades traditional classics such as medianoche, pan con bistec, pan con lechón, etc.  arguably the best – everything made in house from the buns and meat to the mustard, pickles, and sauces… a little pricier than your average Cuban sandwich fare but well worth it.. the owner was working…

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3. Doce Provisions

541 SW 12th Ave Miami, FL 33130

Ever want to say “Wow, that was a great Cuban sandwich” Doce Provisions is the place to be then. They offer truffle fries and tostones. But the real treat is Cubano Sandwich even though it is not technically on the menu. It looks super simple but is packed with flavor, the bread is toasted to perfection and it is very filling and delicious. When you can’t leave Miami without trying a Cuban sandwich, Doce is the place.

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4. Trigo Cafe

839 W 49th St, Hialeah, FL 33012

Trigo Cafe can be described as a hidden little spot in the middle of Hialeah with a huge flavor. From the croquettes, they source from Las Islas Canarias to their Cuban sandwiches and great portions you surely will not be disappointed by stopping in. They offer sweet potato fries and even are serving Cuban coffee like a coffee mix drink called Batido de Trigo with almond milk and whip cream. With a place that makes you feel at home and a taste that transports you there, Trigo Cafe is definitely one that should be on your “must try” list.

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5. Atlantis Cafe

12 NW 1st St, Miami, FL 33128

If you want incredibly filling and authentic dishes, head on over to Atlantis. A cozy restaurant near the courthouse, one block away from the metromover station so it is also convenient. With a nice selection for both breakfast and lunch. Where you can delight your taste buds with one of the best Cuban sandwiches in town. Atlantis has been described as a gem with authentic and flavorful food. They offer a wide variety of food from breakfast sandwiches with your choice of bacon, sausage, or chorizo to their different lunchtime sandwiches such as the Cuban, the Midnight sandwich, or the Chorizo sandwich and pastries too. The Cuban has been described as having the perfect meat to bread rations and definitely top 5 sandwich material. From the “pillowy” bread to the sour pickles Atlantis is sure to tingle your taste buds.

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Can I Smoke Weed and Drive?

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Medical cannabis - Joint

Now that marijuana is legal in Illinois, you may have lots of questions regarding the legalization of cannabis in this state. While there are lots of excited people about the state’s decision to make it okay to have weed in possession, there are still rules and regulations to what’s allowed in the state. People have this notion that we can smoke wherever, whenever. This is not that case folks! And it must be noted that smoking marijuana requires responsibility and is a decision you should make for yourself!

What does it do?

Let’s first dive into what marijuana actually does to your body. Marijuana contains many cannabinoids and THC. THC is a component of the plant which activates psychoactivity in the brain. This causes your brain to change it’s mood, cognition, or perception. There are pros and cons to cannabis as there is to any other drugs whether used medicinally or not.

These some of the things that can happen to your body if you take in cannabis:

  • Heighten your senses
  • Distorted sense of time
  • Impair your motor skills
  • Hard to remember things
  • Lungs or throat may hurt
  • May ease chronic pain
  • Can help with loss of appetite
  • May help with Epilepsy
  • Ease anxiety
  • Can help you sleep better
  • Intensifies alcohol blood level

Here are some questions that you may have regarding Cannabis. Let’s take a closer look into what Illinois does and doesn’t allow.

weed, cannabis

When was weed legalized?

Recreational weed became legal on January 1, 2020.

Who can buy marijuana?

Anyone over the age of 21 can buy weed legally from a licensed seller with or without a medical marijuana card.

Can I sell marijuana?

Only licensed medical dispensaries can sell Cannabis. Somewhere around the middle of 2020, Illinois will allow licenses to new stores, processors, cultivators, and transporters to legally sell cannabis.

Around 300 stores are projected to potentially be in operation to sell marijuana by the year 2022. Essentially government officials will determine who will be opening up in their area.

How much weed can I possess?

An individual can possess 30 grams or 1 ounce of cannabis flower. For cannabis concentrate, the maximum amount allowed is 5 grams. And for edibles, tinctures, only 500 milligrams can be possessed.

Where can I smoke Marijuana?

Smoking marijuana is allowed only in own home or on-site in some cannabis-related business. But you must first find out if that is permitted on-premises.

It is NOT allowed in the following:

  • Any public space such as the streets or parks
  • In motor vehicles
  • On school grounds (except medical users)
  • Near someone that is under 21
  • Near an on-duty police officer, firefighter, bus driver, or correctional officer

Any private business or university can ban the use of marijuana use on their property.

Can I grow marijuana?

Yes and no. Non-patients are not allowed to grow marijuana. And if you are caught, there is a $200 fine for up to 5 plants. Patients can grow up to 5 plants.

Only Illinois’ existing licensed medical marijuana cultivation facilities will be permitted to grow marijuana. Later on, in the year of 2020, Illinois will allow “craft growers” to apply to grow up to 5,000 square feet of cannabis.

How much tax will be applied?

Depending on the THC amount, the tax will vary.

If more than 35% of THC, a 10% sales tax is applied. Any cannabis-infused product, such as edibles, tinctures, or bath bombs will incur a 20% sales tax. And if it contains more than 35% TCH, a 25% sales tax is applied.

Each municipality and county are able to control any additional sales taxes.

Not to mention, if you don’t think we are being taxed enough, then get this. There will also be a 7% gross receipts tax from cultivators and dispensaries. Some dispensaries raise their product prices to include that 7% gross receipts tax.

What about driving under the influence of Marijuana?

First, it is very IRRESPONSIBLE to smoke and drive. Marijuana impairs motor skills and causes paranoia. So let me put this out there, if you are smoking and driving, you are gambling with your life and can hurt not only yourself but others as well.

Drivers with THC blood concentration of 5 nanograms or more per milliliter are guilty of driving under the influence. It doesn’t matter if you are impaired or not, the law states it is considered a DUI. Roadside testing will be examined by Illinois state police.

5 Best Seafood Places FOODIES Must Try in Chicago

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Did you know that The US Department of Health recommends eating two servings of seafood a week? Fish are extremely rich in omega 3 fatty acids. This is considered “good fat” that can be great for your heart! Seafood is any form of sea life, including both freshwater and ocean creatures. Most popular dishes include fish, it can be fried, grilled, or boiled. While some people may not like seafood, others rave about it, in which category are you? King Crab legs are typically the most expensive seafood dish, and oysters are usually offered as happy hour in the restaurants. Did you know that the family of edible oysters, that we find on menus or on ice at the marina are not the oysters that supply pearls? The mothers of pearls are an all-together different family. The treasure kept within the oysters we eat is their flavor. Also a tip for the cook: Be sure to keep your oyster juice; it makes a radiant addition to sauces and soups, like clam chowder. The most popular sides that go perfectly with seafood are mashed potatoes, asparagus, green beans, and mushrooms. So, let’s see what are the best seafood places in Chicago. Oh, and if you decide to dip your toes in the water and try any of these restaurants let us know what you think!

1. Penumbra

3309 W Fullerton Ave Chicago, IL 60647

I dare you to find a better Seafood place than this one. The ambiance is romantic, beautiful and amazing and you would want to return here in a heartbeat! They have a bowl of complimentary potato soup. The most popular starter is a side of scallops in a savory creamy sauce, and the salmon is the most popular main dish, with crispy edges and perfectly cooked inside.

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2. Prime & Provisions

222 N LaSalle St, Chicago, IL 60601

Prime & Provisions is one of the largest and most intimate private places in Chicago. With beautiful views of the Chicago River. They have customized menus, a private bar and business casual is our dress code. Also, there is a buffet available. Seafood tower is a must try dish.

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3. Maple & Ash

8 W Maple St Chicago, IL 60610

Maple & Ash is traditional steakhouse, but at the same time is mixing modern classic wood-fired steak dishes with a sumptuous seafood menu. This Restaurant is crafted by two-Michelin-star and they have a wine list named “one of the most outstanding in the world”. Special offerings for birthdays, so hurry up and make your memories unforgettable here.

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4. Joe’s Seafood, Prime Steak & Stone Crab

60 E Grand Ave Chicago, IL 60611

This restaurant is popular for a wide range of jet-fresh seafood, to complement their treasured. They have happy hour between 2-5pm. John Dory Fish is the most popular one, it is mild white fish in a beautiful browned butter.

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5. Bavette’s Bar & Boeuf

218 W Kinzie St Chicago, IL 60654

Bavette’s Bar & Boeuf is very popular with their seafood towers, richly flavorful ribeyes and classic side dishes. The ambiance is dark and cozy with a romantic mode atmosphere. Also, there’s like a secret lower floor which has fancier booths and a more classy ambiance. Make sure you make a reservation when you go there, they are always busy.

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8 BEST Pie Shops FOODIES Must Try in Chicago!

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Pie, Chicago, Top

A pie is a baked dish made by lining a shallow container with pastry and filling the container with various sweet and savory ingredients. They can also be served with a medley of things making your options limitless. A freshly baked pie touches all the senses, making it a true masterpiece of gastronomical engineering.

Where did pies originate from?

When it comes to the history of pie, most food historians agree that the roots of pie can be traced to the ancient Egyptians during the Neolithic Period. Dating back to 9500BC, the pies had a honey filling covered in a crusty cake made from oats, wheat, rye, or barley. The pies were rustic, free form in shape, and were called Galettes.

However, some believe that pie pastry originated from Ancient Greece and that the Egyptians learned to prepare the dish from them. The Greeks used flour and water to form a paste that they then wrapped around meat and other fillings, which they cooked over an open fire. The plays of the writer, Aristophanes, note that the trade of pastry-cook was separate from that of a baker during that period.

However, the idea of enclosing a filling inside a sort-of-pastry made from flour and oil originated in Ancient Rome, which they called Placenta Cake. It was the closest to what we now know as pies, but this version was often used as an offering to the gods. A Roman cookbook from the 1st Century, called Apicius, mentions recipes that include pie cases.

With the Romans came roads, and that was how their pies and the recipes found their way around all parts of Europe. The modern-day pie originally appeared in England as early as the twelfth century. The first pies had mainly meat fillings and required less material to bake than bread.

What are some popular flavors/fillings?

Most people who prefer cake think it is a better choice, but we think that’s a biased judgment. Pie deserves a little more respect than it is getting, and we have compiled the most popular pie fillings out there, which you should consider giving a try.

  • Apple pie: With a combination of flavors that include crispy apples, the sweetness of sugar, the spice blend, and more, the apple pie is unarguably the greatest pie out there.
  • Cherry pie: Cherry pie is a truly delicious dessert choice that your family and guests will enjoy if you serve it. The bright color of the filling and the slight tartness of the cherries make it sure treat for your taste buds.
  • Lemon meringue: This is a truly picturesque pie with its perfect yellow lemon curd and fluffy white meringue, and you can be sure to enjoy all its goodness if you make it from scratch.
  • Blueberry pie: Blueberry pie is the king of berry pies, but make sure you don’t attempt to eat it while wearing white. But if it stains your clothes, you will readily agree that it is worth it!
  • Pumpkin pie: This pie is one of the best bets for your belly as it is delicious. It can warm anyone’s heart when served with a bit of whipped cream on top.

Some fun facts about pie

If you want to increase your knowledge of all things pie, here are seven interesting facts about pie:

  • Pies in the middle ages were not filled with the sweet fillings we are familiar with today; they were actually filled with different types of decadent meat.
  • According to a recent survey, pumpkin pie is America’s favorite pie flavor, followed by pecan, apple sweet potato.
  • 1 in every 5 Americans who eat pie claims to have eaten an entire pie by themselves.
  • Boston Cream Pie is actually considered a cake.
  • The most expensive piece was sold for over £1,000 for a single slice.
  • There’s a world-famous pie-eating contest in the UK that’s been ongoing since 1992 called the ‘World Pie Eating Championship.’

In Conclusion

Now that you know so much about pie, you can go ahead to prepare the dish for your family as well as show off your knowledge to your friends.

1. Spinning J Bakery

1000 N California Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

Spinning J Bakery is located on the street corner. They offer many unique flavors of pies. They have a bar to sit to enjoy your morning coffee. The most popular flavor of pie they sell is the key lime hibiscus pie which is sweet and tangy. They make a certain number of pies that they sell as a whole or by the slice. Ice cream is also an option to have on the side.

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2. Hoosier Mama Pie Company

1618 1/2 Chicago Ave
Chicago, IL 60622

Hoosier Mama Pie Company has over 20 pie flavors to choose from! That’s a lot of choices. They sell it by the slice or you can buy it as a whole pie. The pies have a crunchy crust that keeps people coming back for more.

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3. Bang Bang Pie & Biscuits

2051 N California Ave
Chicago, IL 60647

Bang Bang Pie is a must-visit when it comes to pies. Each pie is made with fresh seasonal ingredients which then helps rotate about 6 new menu pies daily. Some people like the idea of having new items on the menu, while others want their favorite pie to stay on the menu forever. So it is recommended to call ahead and ask what is on the menu that day. You can buy by the slice or the whole pie, but between us, you’re probably going to need the whole pie.

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4. Sweet Mandy B’s

1208 W Webster Ave
Chicago, IL 60614

Sweet Mandy B’s is a bakery that specializes in cakes and cupcakes but also offers pies. The most popular pie they sell is the key lime pie. Many have raved about their peanut butter pie. Customers keep flying through the door for more.

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5. First Slice

4664 N Manor Ave
Chicago, IL 60625

This is not your usual pie shop. First Slice is a non for profit pie shop. They seek to help out the hungry in Chicago and help those in need. The most popular pie they sell is the French Silk pie. And the craziest pie they have is the Tabasco pie, which is only available in the mini size. So you can try the Tabasco if you dare. Was that a challenge? Maybe.

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6. Defloured

1477 W Balmoral Ave
Chicago, IL 60640

Defloured offers vegan and gluten-free options so that people who suffer from Celiac disease can easily walk through the shop and get some delicious sweets. The pies are made to order which needs a 7 day lead time in advance.

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7. Bittersweet Pastry Shop

1114 W Belmont Ave
Chicago, IL 60657

Bittersweet Pastry Shop is a European style pastry shop that is located in the Lakeview neighborhood. They offer holiday pies and their regular menu pies as well.

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8. Cafe Selmarie

4729 N Lincoln Ave
Chicago, IL 60625

Cafe Selmarie is not your typical pie shop but it offers a cozy dining room experience. The ingredients used are always fresh and high quality. This European style bakery has several pies to choose from and even has seasonal pies.

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Top 10 Burger Joints Foodies Must Try In Miami!!

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Burger, Miami

As the home of the Cheeseburger, Americans have really made cheeseburgers their own. Originally the cheeseburger started as his less popular cousin the hamburger but America decided it isn’t enough to just add cheese, we want to have meat, cheese, and a bun, and add the craziest most delicious foods on top to make it even better like potato chips or eggs. And even crazier things to go with it like blueberry ketchup and guava jelly. Here are just 10 restaurants in Miami that did their own spin on burgers and people can’t seem to get enough of them.

1. Mr. and Mrs. Bun

15572 SW 72nd St Miami, FL 33193

Any returning customer will tell you Mr & Mrs. Bun is consistently great. With good service, a cozy and clean atmosphere, and some amazing burgers what isn’t there to like? Some of the favorites from Mr & Mrs. Bun are their blueberry ketchup and sweet potato fries, lentil salad, juicy bacon wrapped tamales, and pork belly burger. It is safe to say the menu won’t be the same as your average burger joint but with everything down to the buns are homemade it will be a tasty treat and gastronomical delight.

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2. Clutch Burger

146 Giralda Ave Coral Gables, FL 33134

Definitely, a staple of the MIA/FLL area, Clutch Burger has phenomenal burger and waitstaff. With a great beer selection and great food to pair. Some of the most popular dishes are their signature burger, double patty burgers with their special sauce and onion ring, and pork wings. The waitstaff is very helpful in choosing what specifics that you would like on the menu, as well as a hands-on and engaging owner. So, do your tastebuds a favor and check them out.

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3. Killer Melts

12310 SW 127th Ave Miami, FL 33186

One of the best burgers in Miami, hands down is from Killer Melts. Not only are they whipping out amazing burgers but grilled cheeses as well. Whether you are trying one of the fan favorites like the French Assassin with maple mascarpone, mozzarella, maple glazed bacon, and an over-easy egg on top or mac and cheese grilled cheese you are sure to be in for a gooey and delicious treat.  From great service to great food and tap, this place will surely have you joining the clean plate club.

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4. Le Chick Miami

310 NW 24th St Miami, FL 33127

With great food and an innovative cocktail menu, Le Chick is a one-stop restaurant. The vibe can be described as upscale comfort food with engaging energy and ambiance. Even though it is smaller it is great for a date night or night out with the girls. Aside from their regular burgers like the Royale burger and fried chicken they offer vegetarian burgers and options. If you’re looking for a good deal you can’t beat their Saturday happy hour where you can get a burger and fries for $10!

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5. Burgerfi

3530 NW 83rd Ave Ste 104 Doral, FL 33166

Two favorites from Burgerfi are the CEO burger and the bacon cheeseburger with BBQ sauce. The CEO burger uses Koby beef and a special sauce. The bacon cheeseburger is a food you will be happy to use a cheat meal. For a healthier option, their veggie burger is one of the best but vegans beware that the vegetarian patty has cheese in it, which kinda sucks. Burgerfi has fresh and clean ingredients. From the CEO burgers to the urban fries and the creamiest shakes you will have in a long time. BurgerFi also offers a conflicted burger which is their veggie patty + beef patty, and you can add bacon to it. And you don’t have to choose between onion rings & fries (cry + fry). They also have a parmesan topping you can get on top which is to die for. What don’t they have?

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6. Growler USA

337 NW 25th St Miami, FL 33127

Wait they have an enormous selection of local beers on tap and you can get a sampling of six?  Growler USA has a great local selection for beer lovers. And that cheese sauce! The beer menu is massive! The ambiance is super cool and casual, in their outdoor area you can play hopscotch and inside watch TV while drinking and eating while listening to good music. They offer options like a classic cheeseburger with bacon and The Bromance with BBQ sauce and beer cheese. Growler is just a great spot to watch sports or just hang out, with very friendly staff too.

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7. Central Park Food Station

2721 NW 79th Ave Doral, FL 33122

This little spot is definitely a delicacy in the heart of Doral. With very good prices like 2 empanadas, 2 sodas, salad, and burger all for around $20 and amazing food like their Max burger and empanadas.

The sauces that they bring to the table are delicious as well! We highly recommend the burgers, they are very tasty and unique on like classical American Burgers. They offer two sauces one is a little bit spicy and the other one is their energy sauce is a delicious garlic mayo.  Central Park Food Station restaurants offer Venezuelan goodies such as their empanadas and burgers, what makes the burgers unique is that they are very international in their taste – the potato chips and pimento mayo (I think that’s what it is) give me a taste that reminds me of the burgers I have in Europe.

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8. Kush

2003 N Miami Ave Miami, FL 33127

With 18 taps, rare finds, aged beers, rotating list and local food made from scratch Kush is the place to go. The burgers are Fantastic & the Alligator appetizer is very on point. They offer original burgers like the Kush and Hash burger with Hash, Bacon and an egg served on a waffle and the Frita Burger served with guava jelly and gruyere cheese. With everything combined to just sort of melt in your mouth with every bite and the guava blended perfectly with the bacon. They also offer apatacón burger, vegan tacos, vegan jambalaya and have a good beer selection, including a strong cut-infused kombucha that is quite a treat–fresh-tasting and citrusy, but not too sweet, and very well-balanced.

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9. WHISK Gourmet Food and Catering

7382 SW 56th Ave Miami, FL 33143

Here is an unusual one for you, amazing burgers that are only sold on Fridays? Yup, a cozy spot for gourmet bites WHISK Gourmet Food and Catering has everyone talking about the specialty burgers that they serve on Fridays. They have burgers with a thick patty and thick buns, which is hard to hold in your hands but it’s really amazing.  The burgers also come with a sweet, spicy, sauce. Sandwiches and burgers are served with salads. Whisk has a great atmosphere and is very clean inside. The staff is very attentive and informative.

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10. Lokal

3190 Commodore Plz Coconut Grove, FL 33133

Lokal is in a group with Kush, while they have some of the same dishes and burgers like the Frita by Kush they also have some very different options like “My Childhood Dream” Burger that is served on a doughnut with candied bacon. That surely is a childhood dream. Other options are the Lokal, a grass-fed beef burger with avocados, arugula, and honey mustard comes on the side or the Fidy-Fidy burger that is 50% beef and 50% bacon. They also have a dog-friendly outdoor area and a doggie menu too.

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Top 5 Grilled Cheese Foodies Must Try in Miami!!

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Grilled, Cheese, Sandwich

Grilled cheese has been around forever. Whether your mom would make it for you when you weren’t feeling good or if it’s just your favorite type of sandwich, we all love a good grilled cheese sometimes. The restaurants below are serving up every time of grilled cheese imaginable. So if you want to break out of your grilled cheese blues, head on over to one of these shops.

1. Ms Cheezious

7418 Biscayne Blvd Miami, FL 33138

If you’re looking for a place to satisfy your adult grilled cheese cravings, welcome to Ms. Cheezious. They have everything from grilled cheese with mac and cheese inside to goat cheese and prosciutto grilled cheese. They also offer soups like tomato and jupiña or turkey chili. They are consistent with great quality and imagination in their grilled cheeses. You can even build your own grilled cheese with ingredients like Gruyere, Blue, Brie, Havarti cheeses or Prosciutto, Organic BBQ or Buffalo Tempeh, Tomato, Spiced Apples. And don’t forget about dessert with their S’mores Melt.

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2. Blvd Baes

7244 Biscayne Blvd Miami, FL 33138

Blvd Baes is not the typical place that you would expect to get grilled cheese, but even with all the awesome stuff that is on their menu we still found people raving over their 3-cheese grilled cheese. They offer a different take on grilled cheese with three kinds of cheese and green tomatoes on top.

They also offer covered outdoor seating which is very Instagram worthy if I might add. With amazing portions, waitstaff, and a whole lot of cheese is there really any other place you would want to be?

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3. The Lobsta Trap

13150 SW 124th Ave Miami, FL 33186

The Lobsta Trap is not your average restaurant, it is actually a food truck! They offer all different types of lobster and seafood, but the real treat is their lobster grilled cheese. The grilled cheese is made with 3 kinds of cheese, and fresh lobster and bread. Everything is extremely flavorful, fresh and cooked to perfection. You can tell they make it with love because it takes a while, but well worth it. With the way people rave about this truck it is defiantly a must-try next time we are out there.

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4. La Sandwicherie

229 14th St Miami Beach, FL 33139

Locals say that if you go to La Sandwicherie, you must try a grilled cheese. You can make one however you like with 6 choices of cheese and 18 meat add on options, its almost too much to choose from. They also have sandwiches that resemble a grilled cheese like the smoked salmon Croque- aka a smoked salmon grilled cheese served with a side salad. All of their ingredients are super fresh and plentiful.

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5. I Heart Mac & Cheese

15999 Pines Blvd Ste 102 Pembroke Pines, FL 33027

While this place is known for its mac and cheese, the real star of the show is its customizable grilled cheeses.  You can choose from sourdough, gluten-free, or wheat bread and you can add a protein, any veggies you want, and even mac and cheese. I Heart Mac and Cheese’s grilled cheeses come with a tomato soup dipper as well. They offer some healthier options as well such as salads and a cauliflower base option for their mac and cheese. This place offers the best of both worlds and a choice for everyone in the family.

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