7 tips for your vacation diet.

So I went on vacation. And gained at least eight pounds, of the non-muscle variety. I’ve made a lovely little list for you so you too can gain a full pant size while on your own summer vacation.

1. The first chance you get, find a Trader Joe’s and head to the frozen aisle. That would be the one in the middle. On the sides you will see all manner of treats. Go straight to the spot nearest the registers and you will see a one pound bar of Trader Joe’s milk chocolate with almonds. Buy a couple, you never know when you’ll need a second hit.

2. Next, head into the actual freezers. You’re looking for ice cream filled Mochi. You may choose from Mango, Chocolate, Strawberry, or Green Tea. May I recommend the Strawberry? I ate at least 3 little balls of powdery Mochi heaven so I know what I’m talking about.

3. Eat at In N’ Out at every turn. Be sure to get a cheeseburger {plain hamburgers are for pansies}, top it off with a large diet coke, some fries, and a strawberry shake. Trust me here, I know my In N’ Out.

If that doesn’t do it for you, eat enough chicken for a family of four, soaking in the most delicious gravy marinade you’ve ever eaten at Bistro Boudin. I mean honestly, that’s at least 10,000 calories right there.

4. Swing by a bakery or three. I really enjoyed the one on Cannery Row right by the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Eduardo was very nice and didn’t snicker {much} when I ordered a cream filled confection. And proceeded to eat it all by myself.

If that doesn’t suit you, go for the Creme Brulee at Boudin Bistro. This is not a plug. It is a public service announcement meant to help you. You need to go try this stuff. I cannot contain myself now just thinking of it.

And here’s the unjustifiable, sorry evidence of that fact.

I mean look at P, she’s hysterical in the corner trying to figure out what’s wrong with me. It’s called Nirvana P, look it up.

5. You’re going to need some sustenance while you’re doing all that exploring with your kids. I’d really recommend the chocolate covered espresso beans you can find at any coffee shop {or Trader Joe’s} along the way. The caffeine will also help your short term stamina; you can thank me later.

6. When the espresso beans and ice cream filled mochi run out, I would highly recommend a cupcake shop. While it is true that some cupcakes have a more buttery delicious frosting than others, I really can’t steer you wrong in this department. Find a cupcake. Make sure the ratio of frosting to cupcake is 4:1. Do not at any point share with your children. They don’t need the extra sugar.

7. While poolside at any one of the swanky hotels you occupy, be sure to order from the poolside menu. Just because you can. Because you know the next time you’re at a hotel with poolside service might be when you retire. Or die. Whichever comes first. Get nachos, extra cheese, and a
piña colada, extra cream. Be sure to make slurpy sounds and say ‘oooh’ and ‘aaah’ as you eat, because the tanorexic women at the pool will give you the stink eye, and you want to make them understand how lovely it really is to eat.

Voila! You have now *magically* gained 8 pounds. Maybe 9. But I know you’ve stopped counting because every. darn. calorie. was. worth. it.

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Hello there! I’m Allison Czarnecki, founder + editor of Petit Elefant, a blog all about style on a budget for every part of your life: style / home / travel / family. I do a lot of how-to beauty + style tutorials, travel posts, easy recipes, home remodel projects, and cool DIY crafts you totally want to try. I’m super happily married (to a hot Polish immigrant) and am the mother of two kids, a daughter and son, all of whom are featured here on the regular. We live in the country but we’re a little bit rock + roll. Welcome!


  1. Vanessa :

    Oh but it was oh so worth it! Man Trader Joes come to Utah already

  2. KJ :

    good girl. your garden will take care of the pounds for you, since it probably needs tending after your vacation. I'm so glad you enjoyed it. Did you like the aquarium in monterey?

  3. Petit Elefant :


    Let's start a full-blitz social media campaign and embarrass them to death until they come!


    Oh, the calories! Perhaps the garden + local swimming hole will take care of the lbs. The aquarium was amazing! post will be forthcoming.

  4. Scary Mommy :

    This post should have come with a food porn warning. I'm salivating now.

  5. Erin S. :

    Yummy yummy! There is a Trader Joe's here where we just moved. I'm going to check it out soon and I'll look for the mochi!!

  6. Petit Elefant :

    Scary Mommy,

    I know, and I didn't even post a photo of the Nachos. Or the cream filled confection of deliciousness. You probably gained weight just by reading.

  7. Marie {Make and Takes} :

    That is a glorious picture of In N Out!! And I love the tanorexic comment!!! Makin' um sweat with fooooooood.

    And whatever to the gained weight! You do not look like you've gain an ounce. Not Fair!

  8. the emily :

    You are making me SO HUNGRY! Thank goodness In-n-Out is coming to Draper soon.

    Why doesn't UT have a Trader Joe's? I went in Albuquerque last year and bought lots and lots and LOTS of chocolate to bring home to my hubby, and we've been suffering withdrawal ever since.

  9. Naomi :

    We don't have Trader Joes in Kansas, either. Or CostCo, for that matter. I feel your pain…

  10. AlliSMiles :

    You may or may not be happy to know that mochi ice cream is available in Utah. I get it at certain Asian food stores–cuz we eat Japanese 2+ times/week. And I grew up on mochi, so I might die without it.

  11. Donna :

    I'm just jealous! I think I gained 8 pounds reading this.

  12. kalanicut :

    I love that photo of you with spoon in mouth. You are just so GONE with contentment and happiness. Nothing was going to pull you out of that moment of glee. Love that you just enjoyed yourself!

  13. Kami :

    Oh no, Alison. I am on vacation right now doing all the same eating so nervous to see what mygrand total will be. So funny yet sad at the same time.

  14. Native American Momma :

    Putting up pictures of double doubles where people without In N Out's can see them should be illegal.
    Looks like you had a blast!

  15. Lizzie :

    You mean you didn't eat a sundae at the Ghirardelli factory, too?? ;)

  16. Petit Elefant :


    I didn't!! Is that completely criminal? I'll have to do it next time around.