In March 2013, I travelled to New Zealand, Australia, and Hawaii as a chaperone on a school trip. Here are some of my treasures I bought on vacation or just before I departed:
1. TimTams. Oh please stop me now. I can’t just eat one. Or two. How can something so simple taste so good? Our Australian guide told us we needed to try biting off alternate ends of a TimTam, dipping it into tea, and sucking the tea through the TimTam until it reaches our mouths, and then quickly biting into the now tea-filled TimTam.
2. Apicare. I bought a night serum at the recommendation of a sales clerk at the Polynesian Spa in New Zealand. Every time I use it, I wake up looking younger and more fabulous! In fact after using it for a week, I was mistaken 4 times as a teenager (and I’m 38)!! Three women from our group bought this and we are all enjoying it–although we are not big fans of the smell.
3. TS14. Australian designed, colourful plus-sized clothing brand. It captured my artsy-fartsy heart. I am now a card-carrying member and they deliver internationally. Yay!
5. MindFood. Stylish, intelligent Australian magazine for women. Sadly, it’s very expensive for an international subscription. But the good news is the iPad subscription is much, much lower. Check it out. I was impressed by the scope of the content and quality of the writing. For all the magazines in North America, why can’t there be one like this?
6. Pineapple. I used to think pineapple was too sweet and decadent. It tasted like candy. It still does, but one juicy bite brings me back to the beaches of Hawaii. After some research into the health benefits, I learned it’s not candy at all.
7. Compression socks. By wearing compression socks on my many long flights I felt no leg pain. I had no swelling. I could easily walk for long distances when we arrived. I will never travel without them. Tip: Be sure you buy the correct size.
8. Collapsible water bottle. Since I was in safe drinking water countries, this bottle saved me a lot of money. It was easy to find places to refill throughout the day and easy to tuck into my purse when it was emptied.
9. New Zealand sunscreen. On my flight to Australia from NZ my Canadian sunscreen was confiscated so I bought this brand in the airport. Amazing stuff. And proceeds go to the New Zealand Cancer Society. Brilliant fundraising idea. If the Canadian Cancer Society sold its own brand of sunscreen at Shoppers Drug Mart, I would buy it!
10. BurgerFuel. Best chicken burger ever. And they have clever cardboard burger holders so you don’t make a mess while you eat.