November 28, 2022
248: The Importance of Brand Awareness and Social Media for Businesses with Courtney Garza-McCullagh

In this podcast episode, Courtney Garza-McCullagh shares her story of becoming vegan, developing her Sprinkles Creative Agency that supports vegan restaurants, and tells us about her vegan bus tours. Tune in to learn more! I...


In this podcast episode, Courtney Garza-McCullagh shares her story of becoming vegan, developing her Sprinkles Creative  Agency that supports vegan restaurants, and tells us about her vegan bus tours. Tune in to learn more!


In this episode, you will learn:  

  • How Courtney became vegan and started Sprinkles Creative  Agency 
  • Courtney’s efforts with her clients to promote their vegan businesses 
  • How Courtney runs her vegan bus tours in Dallas

 

Resources:
World Peace Diet Benevolent Revolution Tour: bit.ly/DrTuttle

 

Other episodes you'll enjoy
181: Launching an Ethical Business Through Veganism with Courtney Garza-McCullagh

 

About Courtney Garza-McCullagh
Journalist/Influencer/Founder/Social Media Marketing Manager Courtney Garza-McCullagh 

Courtney is a passionate vegan who brings a love for journalism, creativity,  helping local businesses, and animals together with compassion. She aims to create content that makes a difference. Through colorful, well-researched, and unique content, she aims to always educate and inspire her audience. With her social media agency, Sprinkles Creative, she also assists businesses with their branding strategy. She enjoys traveling the world to write for VEGWORLD Magazine, an international vegan lifestyle publication, promoting plant-based stories about vegan products,  services, and individuals from all walks of life.


Connect with Courtney


Website Link for this episode:
https://www.healthylifestylesolutions.org/248


Connect with Us
Website: Healthy Lifestyle Solutions
Instagram: @maya_hls_podcast
YouTube channel: Healthy Lifestyle Solutions
Subscribe to our newsletter: Our Newsletter
Leave us a message: Speak Pipe Voicemail
Rate Me: https://ratethispodcast.com/hls

Follow Us on Our Social Media Channels:

Support the show

Transcript

[00:00:00] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It's so great cuz I've actually learned so much about Omega-3 in the last few months working with this brand, and I've always known that it's good for you, obviously, but a lot of people think, oh, fish Omega-3, obviously I know you know that, and Dr. Riz knows that, but a lot of people don't. So it's really great to see that this product in this company is all about sustainability, but also being vegan and getting sources from algae instead of fish. It's great! 

[00:00:21] Maya Acosta: You have more power over your health than what you've been told. This is the Healthy Lifestyle Solutions podcast. I'm Maya Acosta, and I'm passionate about finding healthy lifestyle solutions to support optimal human health. If you're willing to go with me, together, we can discover how simple lifestyle choices can help improve our quality of life.

[00:00:43] Maya Acosta: And increase longevity in a big way. Let's get started. Hello, my beautiful listeners. Before introducing today's podcast guest, I recently returned from Orlando, Florida, and I wanna tell you about it. That's where I attended the Lysol Medicine Conference with my husband, Riz. I promoted this conference the entire year, and it finally took place.

[00:01:07] Maya Acosta: I can't even begin to explain how meaningful it was for us to connect with like-minded people who are also trained in lifestyle medicine. We even stayed a few days after the conference to visit several theme parks. We had so much fun. I invite you to follow me on social media, specifically Instagram, @maya_hls_podcast, where I enjoy posting reels related to daily activities, and I shared some of my adventures in Florida.

[00:01:36] Maya Acosta: So, I'm preparing an episode for this coming Thursday where I will recap my entire experience. Also, I wanna invite you to an event that I'm hosting December 13th, 2022, here in Dallas. Dr. Will Tuttle, the author of the World Peace Diet, is on a five-month book tour called Benevolent Revolution, and he will be coming to Dallas.

[00:01:59] Maya Acosta: Dr. Tuttle will discuss food and bringing our community together for our health, the animals and the planet. Suppose that you're ready to hear a powerful message that provides the foundation of a more conscious society based on the understanding of the consequences of animal agriculture. In that case, this event is for you.

[00:02:18] Maya Acosta: While many of my listeners are not local, we will livestream this event. So, head on over to bit, that's bit.ly/DrTuttle. I think that you're really gonna enjoy this event, and I'm so looking forward to having Dr. Tuttle here in Dallas. So, my next guess was on the show earlier this year, I asked her to return to talk about her vegan bus tours.

[00:02:47] Maya Acosta: In other words, I wanted her to talk more about her tours and feature them as a gift idea for loved ones. So this episode is part of a holiday gift idea series where I'm giving you ideas as to how you can gift someone that you love. Courtney Garza-McCullagh is the owner and the founder of Sprinkles Creative Agency.

[00:03:09] Maya Acosta: A social media and marketing agency that specializes in working with vegan businesses. Courtney is also a certified chocolate tour guide in Dallas, Texas, and the editor-in-chief of VEGWORLD Magazine. She has worked in the industry for four years and has helped her clients grow their online presence and reach new audiences. 

[00:03:31] Maya Acosta: Riz and I will be on her next bus tour, which will be December 17th. That's the holiday lights and all that wonderful experience. It's a four-hour tour, so make sure to follow us again on social media to see our photos and our videos of the experience. Let's meet Courtney. Okay. And I have the colorful Courtney Garza-McCullagh with me today.

[00:03:54] Maya Acosta: Hello. Hi Courtney. Thank you for being here.

[00:03:57] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah, glad to be back. I know it's been a few months, so this is awesome.

[00:04:01] Maya Acosta: Yeah. Well, it's wonderful because you sort of started with me early this year, and I wanted to highlight some of the local game changers in Dallas, and so I wanted to highlight all of you, and then some of you that I know that is, and now we're towards the end of the year.

[00:04:17] Maya Acosta: And you're back again. And I do have new listeners that would love to learn about you. So yay. So the first time you came on, you shared with us your journey towards going vegan and then how you developed and created your Sprinkles Creative Agency that supports really social media and the vegan restaurants in the area.

[00:04:37] Maya Acosta: And I'm sure you have clients everywhere. Yeah. I was wondering. So, and you know what's so funny is that when you came on the first time, we were supposed to talk about your chocolate tours that you do in Dallas, and then we talked about your being an entrepreneur and everything that you've done in the vegan community, including VEGWORLD Magazine.

[00:04:57] Maya Acosta: And then we just completely didn't talk about the tours, and this is the perfect time because I'm doing a series basically giving my listeners and people locally here in Dallas, like ideas. Gift ideas for the holidays, for themselves, or for loved ones. And I would people to know about your tours and consider gifting that for themselves or to themselves or for someone else.

[00:05:18] Maya Acosta: So, for our new listeners, would you mind just kind of recapping a little bit how did you become a vegan and tell us about Sprinkles Creative Agency?

[00:05:26] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah, so really great. Um, I'm coming up on 10 years as a vegan, and thank goodness I had, I won't dive into it so in-depth like last time, but thank goodness there was a resource for me as a college student at the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas.

[00:05:42] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: That was an all-vegan cafeteria. Literally 100% vegan, no cross-contamination. The whole place was safe, you know, good to go. And as a student, one who barely has time to even think about eating, that was nice because I definitely didn't have time to cook. I definitely didn't have time to really go out. So, I used that resource because it was like a buffet-style cafeteria.

[00:06:04] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And I was transitioning. I was definitely already vegetarian, and I really wanted to go vegan. But one before college, I was living with my family, of course, and they definitely didn't wanna go vegan. So, pretty much like, well good luck trying that vegan thing in college. And it just so happened that University of North Texas was ahead of the game.

[00:06:22] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: They were living in the future, you know, they were like really prepared for the new wave, the new generation me. And so that was really cool to be able to use my student loans to get a meal plan, which I'm so glad I did ‘cuz it was so worth it. The food was every day amazing. And so breakfast, lunch, and dinner, I was able to eat vegan.

[00:06:39] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So, I was like. I got this. I love being vegan, and I had more energy even in my early twenties. You know, like you still need the energy soon to eat well, even though you're young. And you know, I never turned back. I never thought about not being vegan ever again. I was like, no, this is the life for me, even out of college, you know?

[00:06:57] Maya Acosta: This is incredible. Yeah, and you probably hear this a lot from people my age or older who say, had I known this when I was younger, I could have spared myself health issues. Or even, like you said, been healthier. Just in general, with more energy, feeling vibrant. We probably slowed down the aging process and increase our longevity.

[00:07:16] Maya Acosta: So, you got all of this. There's something else that we've never touched on. You touched on it lightly that I want my listeners to hear. You've never had any alcohol in your system? Nope.

[00:07:25] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: No. Yeah, it's funny, we just went somewhere– oh, my husband and I just went on a Disney cruise cause we just celebrated our one-year anniversary of marriage. 

[00:07:32] Maya Acosta: Congratulations.

[00:07:33] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Thank you. So we went on a Disney cruise, and it was super fun. And it was just funny because, so we were able to eat vegan on the cruise ‘cuz we told them in advance, you know, months in advance, were gonna be vegan travelers, and they took care of us. I will say it wasn't the best food in the world, but we ate.

[00:07:47] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: We were never starving. I will say that, but it was funny cuz everybody was offering us alcohol, right? Like left and right. ‘Cause, it's a cruise. You think? Cruise? Oh, you booze it up, I guess I've. This is my first cruise ever. So, that's just what I've heard, the stigma around cruises, and I'm just like, Nope, we don't drink, and they were like

[00:08:03] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Oh, you know, everyone always assumes it's cuz you were sober or like you're sobering up or something. And I'm like, no, no, no. I've never drank. Like, I literally, I don't even know, like I've taken a sip of things, but everything has tasted awful. Like in my opinion, I've never found anything that was like, wow, this is delicious.

[00:08:20] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Like, ugh. I was like, I'm good. I don't like alcohol. And so, I just made that decision at a very young age. Like I just don't want it in my life. I'm good. Like I'm gonna save money, I'm gonna save calories, I'm gonna save just health things that could happen with alcohol, you know? So I was like, you know what, I'm good.

[00:08:36] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So, I've never again recorded that decision.

[00:08:40] Maya Acosta: I think that's the coolest thing ever. It's only been through lifestyle medicine that I've learned how harmful alcohol is because you probably see this all the time. You see different reports and doctors recommending them. One or two glasses a day is okay for heart health and this and that.

[00:08:54] Maya Acosta: And then when you start to really look into the research, you learn that the World Health Organization in 1988 stated that alcohol is a carcinogen. Yep. It's, it's poison and, but it's so normalized in our culture that now that I’ve decided that I no longer wanted it. You know, I no longer wanna drink now I'm promoting sobriety on my show so. 

[00:09:18] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Good for you.

[00:09:19] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Amazing. See, I love that. You know, I think it's just a stigma. I think people will need to like kind of rewire their brain to realize that they really don't need it. And I get that depression, you know, kind of, agitates that like with people who maybe like alcohol a little bit and then they like it a lot after something bad happens.

[00:09:37] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So, I can only imagine that kind of connection to alcohol. But as far as like casually drinking, it's like there's so many great non-alcoholic drinks these days. Like, we can still casually hang out with our friends and like be fancy and hold something, you know?

[00:09:51] Maya Acosta: That's right. It's easy. Yeah, that's great.

[00:09:53] Maya Acosta: I've been making these amazing mocktails, loving it, and of course, you and I love fruits, frozen fruit, mangoes, berries, all that. So, that's a wonderful way to, you know, incorporate that into a drink with a little bit of sparkling soda or mineral soda and whatever you wanna add into it, and some fruit. And there you go.

[00:10:14] Maya Acosta: You don't need anything else. So, I think it's awesome.

[00:10:16] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Would probably like this, at my wedding, we had a vegan, non-alcoholic wedding. And at first, people were like, what? Non-alcoholic wedding? Yeah. You know, but it was so amazing because we had a mocktail that was like sparkling apple cider, but it was in a bubbling cauldron, so we put dry ice in it.

[00:10:35] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So everybody's drink was like, Like steaming, like not steaming, but like bubbling. Like it was like, it looked like a potion, you know, like a magical potion. And so it was really cool. So people were like, oh, this is awesome. Like I don't need an alcoholic drink. I have got magic in a cup, you know. So it was really cool.

[00:10:50] Maya Acosta: That is so cool. So now let's talk about Sprinkles Creative Agency because my husband is now a client of yours. So honored. Yes, and I really want people to know that since you have been managing his Instagram account and really Facebook as well, he has now more interaction and more people noticing. Yeah, of course.

[00:11:10] Maya Acosta: Him. Thank you. So tell us how you started that. How can people, if they're interested in your services, how can they hire you? 

[00:11:17] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I'm so glad to hear that too, because yeah, I believe it's been a few months, about three months, we've been working together. Nearly that, and I have just been so glad to see the growth there because obviously, Dr. Riz deserves it, nor people need to know what he's doing and just be in awareness and just, you know, see how they can connect with him. So social media is so great for that. But to summarize, I started Sprinkles Creative in 2018 August 2018. So we just celebrated our four-year anniversary. Amazing. I cannot believe it's been four.

[00:11:46] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Really blows my mind, you know, so I'm, I'm very thankful because this is pretty much what I've always wanted to do, even in college. So the reason I went to UNT is because I wanted to get my degree in journalism and marketing, and that's exactly what I did. I graduated in 2014 with my, it's a fancy way of saying advertising, but it's called strategic communications with a minor in marketing.

[00:12:07] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And so I. Use that degree to the fullest. You know, I'm very thankful that I went to school for something that I really wanted to do, and I'm still using that degree outside of school. And it is a dream come true because in school I was the president of my student agency, like a student run agency, and we actually worked with local businesses in Denton to do their social media and do their kind of marketing.

[00:12:33] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And I remember being a student and being like, I wanna do this for real. Like I wanna do this when I get outta school and grow up. And obviously, I worked a couple jobs in between school and starting sprinkles, but those jobs prepared me for this because I was able to see what the market's like, you know, how to really help my clients, how to really help.

[00:12:52] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Vegans. Cause my focus is obviously vegan businesses because that's where my heart and soul is. That's where my drive is. I want everyone to go vegan. I want everyone's health to improve. I wanna save the animals planet, everything. And I really think through marketing, through, you know, social media and just the right messaging, I can help do that.

[00:13:11] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And I really think. That we're able to do that in the last four years, I feel like I'm making impact, and for me, that helps me sleep at night. You know, like that feels good in my, my gut. 

[00:13:23] Maya Acosta:  It's your passion. It's what drives you. I can tell. Sorry, I didn't hear that last part. I said, it's your passion and it's what drives you.

[00:13:31] Maya Acosta: I can tell. Yes. It's what keeps you alive and yeah. I remember you had a client a few years ago who had packaged foods. Yes. And I would follow that individual and I noticed the difference right away. I didn't know at the time that you were the one behind all of that, but the first thing that I said was they took the food out of the package.

[00:13:51] Maya Acosta: Yes. .

[00:13:54] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Isn't it so funny how people don't do that? And I'm. What is happening, right. Let's eat it. You know, ,

[00:14:00] Maya Acosta: If we eat with our eyes, we need to see the food as if it were in front of us. Enticing. You make the food very enticing. So I wanna know if you can talk to us a little bit about what brand awareness is.

[00:14:12] Maya Acosta: Yes. Because I know that people my age and older and really just people who are not comfortable. Yeah. Being in front of the camera, we didn't grow up. Many of us don't have tons and tons of photos from we were younger. Yeah. But I have tons and tons of photos of my sister's kids cause I was the photographer.

[00:14:29] Maya Acosta: Yeah. But many of us don't feel comfortable being in front of the camera, being photographed, sharing our story on video. But I know that for brand awareness it's very important.

[00:14:39] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It's everything. It really is, I think the best way to say. Is that we're all humans. Like it's that human connection. People just wanna bond.

[00:14:48] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: They just wanna have memories together. They wanna have relationships together, friendships, you know, professional relationships, meaningful connections, and especially in a day and age where everyone's on their phone and the world is kind of smaller, like, you know, we can talk to people across the world now and it's no big deal.

[00:15:07] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Whereas obviously, in the earlier generations, you weren't able to do. But I think it's both a beautiful thing and also kind of an isolating thing, but in the good news is, or at least how I see it, the social media, we are able to have these online communities like, yeah, you maybe not see these people physically in front of you or be able to like hug 'em or fist bum bum or whatever.

[00:15:28] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: But at least you can still have meaningful conversations and also, Learn from each other, engage with each other. Even joke, and tell people that I technically met my husband on Facebook, which is so weird to think like we didn't meet in real life at first. We met through a social media platform. You know

[00:15:44] Maya Acosta: Yeah. You never know. You never know. I follow. I'm not always on social media, but the people that stand out are the people that have a presence. Yeah. Online. Mm-hmm. . If you do one or two posts, and I'm guilty of not being very consistent with my own social media. Yeah. Yeah. But then there are those doctors and other people who are giving tips every day who are showing you how to cook a quick meal.

[00:16:06] Maya Acosta: And those are the people that I say, wow, they know about brand awareness. They know about being there for their followers. So I think it's pretty cool what you're doing. Yes. And you probably have accounts everywhere now. Do you have clients in other cities in Texas, outside of Texas? I do.

[00:16:22] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah. I'm excited. I have a client that I'm very passionate about because they are totally vegan, microalgae-based omega-3. So they're fish three omega-3 from Iceland, so their factories in Iceland. So I've been doing a lot, obviously I haven't gone yet. I hope to go next year, but their facility is in Iceland and so I wanna go because everything they do is sustainable.

[00:16:44] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Like even down to the type of. Bulbs they use to grow. The microalgae is kinda like infrared light, but they're actually pink and purple and I can show you their pays called Orlo nutrition, O R L O nutrition, and it's all vegan, fish-free omega-3 is what they like to say. And also Iceland is a very sustainable country in itself.

[00:17:04] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It's easy for them to kind of integrate that culture into the product because all of their product is made out of post-consumer materials, it's all plastic free. No weird gel casings. Everything's totally vegan and eco-friendly, which is really rare defined for like a supplement. And it's so great cause I've actually learned so much about omega threes in the last few months working with this brand.

[00:17:28] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I mean, I've always known that it's good for you, obviously, but a lot of people think, oh, fish Omega three not the case. Obviously I know you know that and Dr. Riz knows that, but a lot of people don't. And so it's really great to see. Product in this company is all. Sustainability, but also being vegan and getting sources from algae instead of fish.

[00:17:46] Maya Acosta: It's great. Yes. I can't wait to learn more about them. So are they on your social media or are you okay?

[00:17:52] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah, I posted a couple times about them. I actually have a post today scheduled for them that I'm posting myself, cuz I obviously went on a cruise. And I wanna connect people with understanding that when you go on things like cruises, You gotta be kind to the earth.

[00:18:05] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: You know, you can't like throw your waste over the ship and be like, oh, it's trash. You know, like there's fish in there, there's life in there. And so I wanted to connect people with like, we shouldn't be consuming fish. We shouldn't be wasting the oceans, including them and all these things. And so I made a lot of fun content that I'm excited to share.

[00:18:22] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Cause cruises, you know, have the stigma I think too, about being wasteful. But actually if you do the research, a lot of cruises, including Disney, are really doing their part to save. You know, really reduce the food waste, but also trash waste and plastic waste. And it is great. So I think it's cool that they're catching on.

[00:18:39] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I'm not saying that all cruises are sustainable by any means, but it is nice to know that people are being conscious

[00:18:45] Maya Acosta: of it. Yep. And what you just said too, I wanna go back in a minute about the vegan cruises, but the veganism during a cruise, but the algae, I just like what you're saying. I think we need to highlight these companies that are providing the Omega theis through algae.

[00:19:02] Maya Acosta: At the end of the day, we know that that's where the fish get. The omega threes. 

[00:19:07] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: The fish are literally the middlemen. They're the middle men. We don't need them. Like we just get it from the algae.

[00:19:12] Maya Acosta: It's crazy. That's right. Yeah. Yeah. So I'm so glad that you were highlighting Disney because you know, I commented on your post, I think we need to do this.

[00:19:20] Maya Acosta: I think we need to say, Hey, you guys, you're really missing out on a large portion of individuals that would be on your cruise. Yeah. If you just provided delicious. Healthy meals. Yes. And unlike other things, when you're traveling, you can take food with you here and there. You can't do that on a cruise. Nope. Yeah.

[00:19:38] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Um, I specifically said that in instructions, do not bring any snacks. Do not bring any food. So again, we're not starving. We were fine, but it was just like very just. It seemed like they didn't think about it. Like it wasn't very thoughtful. It seemed like we were kind of like, you know, second fiddle, or not second fiddle, but what's the word on the back burner?

[00:19:57] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Like, oh, whatever. And we did meet one other lady that was vegan, but I was like, there's no way that out of these 3000 passengers, there's only three vegans on the cruise. There's no way. So I was just like, how is this happening? So, you know, I did tag them. I don't think they saw it yet, but you know, maybe one day they will.

[00:20:15] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And I did one day and they had me. Three different surveys cuz they always, they make everyone do surveys. You don't have to do it, but like, I would like to, so I did write in my survey and I wasn't mean about it by any means. I was like, Hey guys, we had a great time. We loved Disney. Like obviously all the shows were fantastic and we just had memories forever.

[00:20:33] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: But the food was. Left something to be desired. Like, let's really work on that. Let's get some better chefs in there. Let's get some seasoning. I don't know, like it was just not good.

[00:20:44] Maya Acosta: We need to give them ideas now. The holistic holiday at sea is resuming their vegan cruise next year. I saw that. I'm not sure if I'm gonna go, and the reason being, no problem with the food, but I just don't wanna burn myself out like I did before with, oh, you know, because it's a conference on the, you know, by ship.

[00:21:02] Maya Acosta: So you don't do that either, to be honest. I mean, I know because then you're just, you know, just going to classes and all of that. Yeah, and it can be tiring, but I love that half of the ship was vegan, and so the port side, I think it was the port side was all vegan food. And then in the evening they would have like this pizza party thing where you can just go into the food hall and just have.

[00:21:25] Maya Acosta: Vegan pizza. Cool. I think they offered regular and vegan pizza, but a lot of us would get together and just munch on the pizza. So of course it was fun. Vegan ice cream during different, yeah. You know, so just, and that's what you were looking for? I was. You were looking for fun foods that you would enjoy anywhere else but on the ship.

[00:21:43] Maya Acosta: So that, because as part of the pleasure of being on a cruise, we did get

[00:21:46] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Mickey Mouse Waffles. And they were cute. They were like shaped like Mickey Mouse, so it was like cute. But honestly they were kind of undercooked and gummy. Like we got them three days in a row and it was just like we kept thinking they're gonna get better and they just didn't it again.

[00:22:02] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It just seemed like. They didn't really like test it out before we came on, you know, just kinda like, oh, here, this is vegan. Like I'm glad they at least double-check the ingredients. And we had no sickness. We didn't get sick at all. We were fine. Everything was totally vegan. But yeah, it was Just one more, there is a cruise I'm looking at, it's not holistic seas.

[00:22:20] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It's called vegan voyages and it's a hundred percent vegan and they go, Normandy France, and you know, like, I think I forgot the other places, but really like cool, like exotic places, but a hundred percent vegan. Like nothing is not vegan. And I do yoga every day. Even the like soap is cruelty-free, vegan, like everything.

[00:22:40] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And so it was like, okay, I think I'm gonna do that mix. Like I wanna do all vegan cruises, like attention to detail. Like they were like in the Normandy, Paris one, they said they were gonna have. Vegan cheese night and like, you know, charcuterie board night. Cause everything's French, you know? And I'm like, oh my goodness, I need to do that. Like sign me up for that one.

[00:22:59] Maya Acosta: Well, I'm so glad you mentioned it. Yeah. We were already vegan when we took a family trip and we did a Mediterranean cruise, which was. I think we flew into Paris, but we went everywhere. So we were in Spain and Italy. Amazing. 

[00:23:19] Maya Acosta: Beautiful. Yeah. But just like what you're saying, the worst part was the food. I struggled so much and actually Courtney, after that cruise, I said I never wanna do another cruise again cuz it's torture. It's torture for me and then you land in certain places. I would say that now that you're talking about the French Jacori board, and I never say that right. France has been, for me, the hardest place to eat vegan unless I find a vegan restaurant.

[00:23:40] Maya Acosta: Interesting. And probably Spain too. Spain cause there's so much bacon, so much pork in the dishes. Oh. So, but anyway, so, no,

[00:23:49] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I mean, see I would wanna do that again. I've heard the same thing cuz French are really heavy in, they're like butter and cheese, you know? Yeah. So I've heard that. But yeah, if we could go all vegan, some, but the

[00:23:58] Maya Acosta: world has changed and there are no, there are more vegan restaurants everywhere now. So it's just a matter of me getting out there. 

[00:24:05] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So years that I've been vegan, like a lot of improvements have happened and obviously, Very thankful for it. I'm just like, I love it. We're just on the study climb, you know? It takes time. We're getting more food scientists and creative chefs and creative businesses, so I have no doubt it's just gonna get better as the years go on.

[00:24:21] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: But it is funny to think that we're like, we're in 2022. How do you not know Disney, that vegans need to eat good food? 

[00:24:29] Maya Acosta: Like, what's crazy? That's right. And actually, cuz I know that we're both planning for a trip, so I don't wanna take too much of your time, but I will say my husband and I are going to the Lifestyle Medicine Conference next week in Orlando.

[00:24:40] Maya Acosta: We're staying a few days extra because we wanna go to some place like maybe Universal Studios or something like that. I'm sure that I've never been. Okay.

[00:24:47] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Please go. And I was gonna tell I all about it. I was gonna, now

[00:24:49] Maya Acosta: I'm gonna want, I'm gonna. Right. I haven't been in years, but I will tell you that now.

[00:24:54] Maya Acosta: I'm thinking, what about the food? Will I find anything to eat?

[00:24:57] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: There's, there's an Instagram account you should follow. It's called She's Amazing. She's our vegan at Disney, I think is what her name is. But she like literally has a page just to talk about like the new vegan stuff they're making. The stuff that you can always get the seasonal stuff limited edition, but she is like dedicated.

[00:25:13] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Her page is so helpful on covering like what Disney makes at the parks specifically for vegans. I'm like, perfect. Amazing account. Yeah. So definitely follow her, but I'm excited for you to see it. Um, my friend was just there also and she said she got really good vegan food cuz she went to Universal and she saw like the Harry Potter world and like all the different stuff and I was like, I wanna go. I’ve been to Disney. It's not right. 

[00:25:37] Maya Acosta: Right. We were like, we just need a little bit of fun. We don't have anything planned, so we really probably should look to see about the tickets right now. But speaking of that, so when you started Sprinkles, so Sprinkles Creative Agency, you saw a need Yes. For representation in the VA community in terms of social media.

[00:25:57] Maya Acosta: So, let's talk about your local Dallas tours. Tell me about that. Cause Liza's daughter was the one that told us, like a year ago, she said, It's so funny, she never gave us your name. She say y'all should go on that vegan chocolate tour. Yes, there's a bus. And so I was like, well, what is she talking about?

[00:26:13] Maya Acosta: She never told us more. And then we come to find out from Brett that you're the one. Amazing. So tell us about those tours.

[00:26:21] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So it's funny, the lady that created it, Her name is Jeanine and she's had this company at least 15 years. It might be 20. She's so sweet. She was a little bit older lady and she contacted me out of nowhere, back in 2021, like early 2021.

[00:26:37] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I think it was like January, February. And I had no idea who she was. And she was like, Hey, your name came up because I'm wanting to start these vegan bus tours and I need to look back and see who recommended me to. Cause I was like, oh, that's awesome. Like how random. And of course, cause like I pride myself on being like the Dallas Vegan, you know, like the person.

[00:26:56] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: That really amplifies how amazing it is to be vegan in Dallas. Cause it's, it really is. Mm-hmm. . And so she was like, would you be interested in hosting these tours? Like all you have to do is like, basically have a microphone just guide people, like be the host, you know, like almost like I'm hosting a show, like what you're doing now.

[00:27:13] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And then just lead people to these like four to five different steps. So we usually go. Four to five restaurants or we tie in like a vegan grocery store, like Lucky Mouth or we went to Ann's Health food store in in Oak Cliff one time, or we'll go to like one time we went to a garden, not Bonton Farms, but I forgot the name of it.

[00:27:32] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It was like a grow your own like food garden in Dallas. It was so cool and we got to tour that. Not always do we go to like. Just restaurants, like we're not just eating the whole time. We usually try to do like one stop that's not just food related, but it's always vegan a hundred percent. So you never have to worry.

[00:27:47] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And what's cool is I wanna tell people that if you have an allergy, like you're gluten-free vegan, or you're, we had a girl that's allergic to sesame seeds that came on the bus and we tell people, just tell us and we'll make sure that you will. Everything cause every chef is so like wonderful with allergens.

[00:28:05] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So we just tell them like, Hey, we have a girl that's allergic to sesame seeds and they're like, totally cool. We'll make sure there's no sesame seeds and everything's still vegan. So I love it. I've so since. Early 2021. I think I've done seven or eight bus tours now and I've expanded. I've gone to San Antonio and I've done a few bus tours out there and all vegan.

[00:28:25] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It's so funny, I tried to do two Austin bus tours, but one time it was canceled cuz of Covid because they had like a really scary outbreak in Austin that wasn't in Dallas. And then another time, well, it was supposed to be literally tomorrow, but I had to reschedule it cause we have vegan Dale tomorrow and I'm working it.

[00:28:42] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And also, it's so close to my trip that I was like, I can't do a bus tour in Austin. This is crazy. So I will do one in Austin. It's gonna happen. I can't tell you how many people have messaged me. Like, what? Are you coming? I'm like, I'm coming. We're gonna do it. But I'm excited because they've been selling out like all my bus doors sell out and it's such an honor for me because I'm just like, This is so cool to see that people have this need and I'm able fulfill that because mm-hmm.

[00:29:08] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: The best part, though is that not everyone's vegan that attends, and then they come and talk to me afterwards and they're like, I'm not vegan, but I just wanted to check this out because I'm curious and I would love keep trying this vegan thing because you've made it so. Accessible and fun. And now I know about these restaurants that not only are a hundred percent vegan, but we also go to vegan-friendly places that have just like maybe a vegan menu or vegan options.

[00:29:35] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And I do that purposefully because I want people, Who are either not vegan or are vegan, but they have family or friends that they want to go to, like Omni restaurant is what we call it. And be able to have their family eat their food, their omnivore food, and then have a vegan option or a few vegan options.

[00:29:55] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So I love to do both because I really think that in this world, people need to kind of be met halfway, and I mean in the vegan world, because you. The reality is, as you know, very full well, people aren't gonna go vegan overnight. Some do, and I think it's amazing. I definitely didn't, it took me about six years to go fully vegan from vegetarian.

[00:30:13] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Mm-hmm. . So, like, I don't think anyone should rush themselves. So I love to do these bus tours because it's a perfect way to just like, you're literally, you're dedicating four hours of your day to do like a fun little tasting of like little vegan bites around Dallas or San Antonio or Austin, wherever I do it. I think people like that little. Taste of vegan is what kind of is, you know?

[00:30:35] Maya Acosta: Yep. I love all that you just said in terms of the reasons why people enjoy this and why you're doing it. The other thing that came to mind while you were sharing that is that we'll be exploring our city as if we were tourists, right?

[00:30:47] Maya Acosta: Yep. Which, uh, I think a lot of times we start to sort of, we get into these habits of just, you know, lifestyle habits. This is what I do or maybe I don't do, and then we forget to explore our city and to enjoy it. And so what you're doing is you're sort of just highlighting those. This so that we can continue to support them and also introducing people to vegan foods, like you said.

[00:31:08] Maya Acosta: And you remind me, and I probably told you this before, but you remind me of the girl that I interviewed from Madrid, who started her, I think she goes by vegan. No, she goes by, oh, you told me this. Yes. Yeah. Madrid Vegan. Yeah, Madrid. Vegan tours and. I think her business changed as a result of the pandemic affecting it.

[00:31:27] Maya Acosta: But she had partnered with Elton the Museum. Oh, amazing. Oh, that's right. Yes. And she did taps, so vegan taps, which, you know, like I said, it could be hard in Madrid, but you know, you could do just a top-of-tour walking tour or you can partner taps with The Proto. And then the partnership she had with The Proto was that she would highlight the art pieces that.

[00:31:50] Maya Acosta: Depict, is that the right word? That show graphic animal cruelty, anything associated. Because a lot of those other paintings could, you know, show animal torture. I actually don't wanna see that. I'm not speaking couture yet. That's right. And I remember, and that was, I think I interviewed her at the beginning of 2020 and I was very excited about what she was doing.

[00:32:10] Maya Acosta: Now you're doing something like that in the sense that you're highlighting for the rest of us vegans, who maybe we wanna dine with more people other than just our loved ones. Get together. Mingle network. Yes. Now Ruth and I are gonna join you December 17th.

[00:32:24] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yay. So I wanted to add too, what else we do on the bus tours is not only do we do the food aspect, my personal favorite time is in between. Cause obviously, it takes like sometimes 15 minutes, sometimes 20 minutes to drive in between stops. And I get on the microphone and I do Dallas trivia. And so you'll learn a lot about Dallas history, Dallas, fun facts, Dallas, you know, quirky things. And so I personally love that because I give out prizes like I give out, you know, like all food's jerky or I give out little vegan stickers or vegan pins or you know, like little fun things.

[00:32:59] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And so it's, I like that because obviously I am an extrovert and I love to interact with people and it's good cause it's kinda like icebreakers. It's like, Hey, let's raise our hand. Let's answer the questions and like let's interact with each other. And then a lot of people, sometimes I'll say a question that nobody knows the answer to and they're like, oh, so cool.

[00:33:17] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Like, we had no idea. And I was like, see, we're all learning. And so for me, it's a really fun, like four hours of like jam-packed interaction. Like we're trying food, we're getting on the bus, running off the bus, we're doing trivia, winning prizes, we're singing songs, we're being silly. And people make new friends on my bus.

[00:33:34] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Like that is the coolest part too, is like being able to see. People are like, oh, so cool. You live in Addison and I live in Addison. Oh my God, so cool. Whatever. And it's, they're making new memories, new friends, or taking pictures like I've always had nothing but. Great feedback and just great times afterwards.

[00:33:52] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So I'm looking forward to Da, to December because that one's gonna be specifically holiday themed. So we're gonna be doing not only food, which we're definitely gonna eat some great food, but we're also gonna look at the Dallas Christmas lights and you know, Dallas, especially the fancy houses go all out.

[00:34:08] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So it's really cool. We'll be doing Christmas songs on the. Give the spirit. And also I wanna do a tacky Christmas sweater contest. So I want everyone to wear their tacky Christmas sweaters and whoever has the craziest one will

[00:34:20] Maya Acosta: win the prize. So, oh my goodness. That's too much fun. And is that one also for hours? Yes. Mm-hmm. . Okay. I think I saw you'll be doing Vitruvian lights. Yes. Mm-hmm. in Addison, which is a wonderful, what I like about the idea of going with you guys is that, as you know, when you go to this park and see all these lights, the parking is the hardest park. Cause you have to park far away and then walk all the way through.

[00:34:44] Maya Acosta: So in the bus, I, we just gonna pull up. That's it.

[00:34:47] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah. Yeah. Have it all set up for us. So I love that aspect too, because think. It says, another thing is so many people are like, oh my gosh, I wanna try all these vegan spots, but I don't have time to drive all over the world. You know? Cuz as we all know, Dallas is very spread out.

[00:35:01] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It's a metroplex, you know? Mm-hmm. . So we take that hard part off of you. Cause I personally am not a fan of driving either. Mm-hmm. So it's nice to have someone literally cart you around like you're like in limousine or something. So that's pretty fancy too.

[00:35:16] Maya Acosta: It's pretty cool. We'll be seeing lights in different places throughout Dallas and I don't remember, is there a restaurant? Stop with this one? Yeah. 

[00:35:23] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Totally. Oh yeah, Oh yeah, we're gonna have sweet and savory bites. Last year, I believe we went to either three or four restaurants. Yeah. Oh my God, I'm so excited. We're gonna have really good food. We'll definitely have like treats on the bus too. And last year I made hot chocolate for everyone, but it was so.

[00:35:41] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: One, it was so hot. The hot chocolate. And also we were bumpy that people were like spilling it everywhere. So maybe I won't make hot chocolate this year. We'll see. Maybe I'll bring like vegan egg. No, maybe that'll be easier cause it's not. We'll see. But I thought that was funny.

[00:35:55] Maya Acosta: I'm you're, Oh yeah, I'm too excited. We've been wanting to go, but at the time when we learned about you, our dog was not great trained, so we, it's hard to leave him, but now he's doing much better, so I can leave him for four hours because yeah, for restaurants we can't take him. So it's a little trickier. Courtney, I thought we would sort of wrap things up a little bit by asking you some rapid-fire questions just to get to know you a little bit more. You can answer them quickly, but if you feel like elaborating on in Yeah. When it comes to any of these topics, I thought that would be fun too. Are you ready? Totally. Okay. So my first question, which actor or actress would you play in a documentary?

[00:36:35] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah. Okay. So I thought about this question, and I would say you're a laugh at this, but it's true. I'm bummed she's not vegan anymore, but maybe I could like do a good job of like depicting that. Anyway, Miley Cyrus, because everyone has always said that we look a lot alike and fun fact, we're actually two days apart, like not even like.

[00:36:53] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Two days and two years. No, like we were born two days apart, the exact same year. It's really weird. So we're like this exact same age, and everyone's like, you look like Molly, Sarah. I'm like, I know. Sounds weird.

[00:37:03] Maya Acosta: You do. And have you ever dressed up like her during Halloween? No,

[00:37:07] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: but I should. I can't tell you, especially when she was blonde. I was blonde at the same time, and actually, I went blonde. First, so I was like, you're copying me. And then I went vegan, and then she went vegan literally like a month later. I'm like, if she's spying on me, it was weird. But no, I'm bummed she's not vegan anymore. But maybe, hopefully she'll go back cuz it's so ridiculous the reason she stopped being vegan. But I.

[00:37:26] Maya Acosta: Right. Well, and then that's why and I wanna just kind add this quick comment. That's why the educational part is important and, and the sustainability to make it easy, but also tell people why being vegan is important. We help the animals, we help the planet and our health. Yes. That's also very important. Okay. Here's another one. When you wake up in the morning, what's your number one priority? Ooh.

[00:37:49] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I love starting my day with yoga. I really do like, to me, if I don't do some kind of fitness element to start my day, I really do feel off. And maybe that's a psychological thing, but if I. Sleep in, I have to like go straight to a meeting.

[00:38:03] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I feel like jostled. I'm like, oh my gosh. Cuz I feel like doing yoga especially as opposed to like, I usually yoga run and those both like calm me down. It kinda like eases you into the day. So for me that's a priority for sure. 

[00:38:14] Maya Acosta: That's wonderful. And we should mention that you are trained now in yoga. I finished.

[00:38:20] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah, I finished my certification programs. Yoga teacher certified. Do I have time for it? No, but I love it.

[00:38:27] Maya Acosta: Congratulations. Yes. That's something you can always do in the future. That's so cool. Exactly. I love to have. So this next question is really, because many of us have different fears, right? And you seem to be very adventurous. Yeah. And so what are most people afraid of that doesn't scare you?

[00:38:43] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Um, heights, I would say I'm not really afraid of spiders or snakes either. So I'm a very like nature's person. So if I go out in nature and I see a spider or a snake, which we actually do often in our neighborhood, cuz our neighborhood's kind of like in the forest. We live next to a like white rock lake, sort of.

[00:39:00] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So we see lots of mostly little snakes and, but lots of spiders. Like my whole garage is full of spiders and I actually say hi to them. I'm like, Hey, what's up? I don't kill them. I don't move them. Like, it's just weird. So I'm not, yeah, it never bother.

[00:39:12] Maya Acosta: Yeah. And we should also add to this one that Halloween, it seems to be like your favorite holiday. Holiday and that's when you got married. Yes. And okay, so Halloween is.

[00:39:22] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So now we celebrate every year in, you know, double the holiday itself and also our wedding. That's

[00:39:28] Maya Acosta: so, yes. What's the main thing on your bucket list? 

[00:39:32] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Ooh, just honestly travel the world. I wanna go to as many countries as possible in my lifetime, and I've already gone to 14 New Zealand next week will be 14 countries, so including us, but still, yeah, so that's my bucket list for sure.

[00:39:47] Maya Acosta: Do you have one of those scratch-off maps or stickers that you collecting?

[00:39:52] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: One. What I do have though is a shelf, actually it's become two shelves. Every time I go to a different country, I get a coffee mug that says like what the country is. And so I have a whole. Collection now of all the countries I've gone to. So that definitely is gonna grow. 

[00:40:08] Maya Acosta: Yeah. That's a wonderful, I can't wait to see where you travel because I follow you on social media. Yes. Okay. What is one surefire way to grab your attention?

[00:40:18] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Probably with food. Obviously, good food, good vegan food like that grabs my attention for sure.

[00:40:25] Maya Acosta: That's okay. Hear that Disney. You need to grab Courtney's attention. That's the way to do it.

[00:40:30] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It has to be really beautiful presentation, and obviously, it has to match that presentation with great flavor.

[00:40:37] Maya Acosta: Yeah, flavor is so important. What upcoming life event are you excited? 

[00:40:43] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: The trip for sure, but the trip is actually twofold into the big life event, which is turning 30. I'm turning 30 in two weeks, and I'm just like, this is wild. I mean, I'm so happy, obviously, like I'm not scared of 30. I'm not like, oh my God, I'm getting old. I'm actually like embracing it because I feel like a lot of people that I admire. In my life, but also just people that I don't really know, but like celebrities, they did so much of their like biggest famous thing in their thirties and I'm like, you know what?

[00:41:12] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I'm excited. I'm embracing it. I'm gonna be more wise.

[00:41:15] Maya Acosta: It's gonna be great. That's beautiful. I remember turning 30 for me was pretty difficult, but when you turn 30 and how you feel about that determines if you feel like you're on. Path, of course, if you feel good about what you're doing, because after that it just feels like smooth sailing,

[00:41:29] Maya Acosta: It all counts. Yes. Yeah. And you said the outcome in event, I don't know, we said it before we started recording, but you're headed to New Zealand. Yes.

[00:41:36] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So excited. Oh my gosh. So totally a first time. It's gonna be great. I'm gonna celebrate my actual birthday in New Zealand, which. Is 19 hours ahead of Texas time, so technically I'm gonna celebrate my birthday twice.

[00:41:50] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I'm gonna celebr my birthday in the future in New Zealand, and then again Texas time.

[00:41:54] Maya Acosta: Yeah, that's wonderful. Congratulations. I can't, how long are you, will you be there? 

[00:42:00] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Just about eight days, so like a little over a week, but so excited.

[00:42:03] Maya Acosta: It's gonna be awesome. All right. Here's a fun question because I was thinking about it for myself as well, but what is the best thing that happened to you? This.

[00:42:12] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Ooh. that's hard. I would say not necessarily a defining moment, but just growth because I actually had a friend tell me the other day that she remembers me talking last year about all these things, like the person I wanted to become, and this year I've really. Leaned into it. Like for example, I have definitely created boundaries in my professional life that I last year would've never been able to do because I'm such a people pleaser and which can be good obviously, but also bad.

[00:42:44] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And so this year I've definitely become stronger and for me that's the best part of growth is just to learn. That you are in charge of your life and you don't have to put up with things that maybe you know, hurt your soul or hurt your psyche. And I've learned that this year that I'm like, I don't actually need to do this.

[00:43:03] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Why am I doing this? I'm doing this to make someone else happy, but that's just hurting me. So, We're gonna put a stop to this and I would've never been able to do that before this year. So that's my biggest defining moment. 

[00:43:16] Maya Acosta: That's huge. And what was that, you said there really wasn't a defining moment, but there was something that geared you towards saying, Hey, I have to protect my energy. I have to protect my space. Was there anything that stands out? 

[00:43:30] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Your health always tells you a lot about what's going on in your brain and also what's going on in your professional life. And for me, I was so, my eye was twitching, like literally twitching like a robot. Like it was like, it was crazy. I was like the back of, so literally right here, the back of my head was, I had a constant headache and I've never had a headache back there.

[00:43:52] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Like usually, you know, you get maybe a little headache right here in your temples. , but no, it was like in the back of my brain and I of course like did a bunch of research and I was like, oh, this is all related to stress. Like my eye twitching my brain, like literally feeling like someone was like squeezing it is for weeks and I kid you not.

[00:44:11] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: It was due to a client that I had that was very overbearing and it was just not a good fit. It was clearly like it was not what I was used to, like the people I was used to dealing with, and it was just clearly. As soon as I, let's just say I hate using the word fire, but as soon as I cut ties and put myself first, and that also made me feel good, is like I'm the one that initiated it.

[00:44:34] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I was like, I can no longer work with you because it's hurting my stress, my soul, my sleep. I was not sleeping. It was all these things and I'm like, I don't really need to do this. And it felt really good to be. Say that to myself, like, you don't really need this. What are you doing this for? And so after I did that, my headache went away, my eyes stopped twitching, I was sleeping better.

[00:44:58] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I was able to like actually eat. Cause when I get stressed I just don't eat. It's crazy. And so it was amazing. I felt so good afterwards and was like, You were growing, you did it. You know? So it was really nice to see that in myself.

[00:45:11] Maya Acosta: Congratulations. It's like ending a bad relationship that you're in is just, that's exactly what it was.

[00:45:16] Maya Acosta: Like , you don't need it. It's time for that divorce to happen. Yep. That's wonderful. I feel like I'm in that space too, where I don't need to suffer anymore. Like I've suffered enough in my life. Okay. I'm gonna ask you just one more question because I know we both have to pack, but I thought I asked this one because I know. You love different items and so I thought I asked what is something that you love that is vintage?

[00:45:39] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Ooh, so many vintage things. So my grandma is 86. She's still alive. She's doing great. She's actually on a road trip right now. Crazy. So she has so many things that she's passed down to me and I just cherish mostly jewelry.

[00:45:53] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: I have this one piece of jewelry that I, I honestly don't even wear it anymore cause I'm so scared I'm gonna break it. I'm scared that I'm gonna be like on a trip and somehow knock it against something, but it's a gorgeous bracelet that only fits me, which is really special. Cause me and my grandma kinda have a similar body size when she was my age.

[00:46:11] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: And so it's like a cameo that was like engraved in the glass of this bracelet and it's so delicate and just like, Beautiful. It's like a gold bracelet and it's like a face, like a cameo of like a beautiful cameo woman, whatever. But if you turn it around, you can feel the etching of the face and it's like so beautifully made. And I think it's from, I don't even know what year it's from some, a long time ago, but I just, I cherish it so much. 

[00:46:37] Maya Acosta: Oh my goodness. That's beautiful. Yeah, it reminds me of, I have, well she's gone now, but my great-aunt that was older and she handed down some rings, a little bit of jewelry down to me, and I'm the same way.

[00:46:50] Maya Acosta: Courtney, like, I trust her that so much you don't wanna wear it, but I don't. Maybe just for social media, like Exactly, you know? Yes. This has been so much fun getting to know you this way. What's the best way that my listeners can learn more about you? And then, like I said, the whole idea was to encourage people to purchase your tours and not just the holiday tour, but you know, you'll have some next year.

[00:47:13] Maya Acosta: So if people want a gift tours to loved ones, what's the best way to do? 

[00:47:19] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So it's not my website, but it's called Dallas by Chocolate and it's it's Janine's website. The lady I mentioned before. So Dallas by chocolate.com and you can go on there. She has a whole calendar of different types of tours. Again, her company is not vegan, I just do the vegan ones.

[00:47:34] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So you just search for the vegan bus tour and that's me. Anything that's vegan-related on the page, that's me. And so we have them pretty much booked out for the next few months. We do one every other month. So, for example, I just did one in October, so the next one's in December, and then after that, the next one will be in February, probably Valentine's theme, you know?

[00:47:53] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: So we have one every other month, so you can always buy in advance cuz we schedule in advance. It's always on a Saturday, so that's easy to remember. It's not ever gonna be on a weekday or a Sunday. So pretty nice to kinda.

[00:48:05] Maya Acosta: After December, the next one will be around Valentine's Day. Yes.

[00:48:09] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: We did one this Valentine's Day and it was so fun.

[00:48:12] Maya Acosta: I'm going to purchase one for that one as well. Yes, because that would be fun for couples for date night. So, and one last question about the tour. How many people can fit in a bus? 35. 35. Oh my gosh. That's pretty nice. It's nice.

[00:48:27] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Yeah. There's air conditioning. Like I said, I have a microphone. We have music.

[00:48:30] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: Like it's really nice. We always have enough space so you're not crammed by any means. Cause every chair has its own like armrest and stuff. So don't worry about like, am I gonna be too close to someone? I don't know. Like, no, it's really nicely

[00:48:42] Maya Acosta: spread out. Yeah, that's very important. I'll add the rest of your links to the show notes.

[00:48:47] Maya Acosta: And Courtney, I know we both got a pack cuz we're both leaving pretty soon for our trip. So enjoy vegan del and in New Zealand. Yes, and thank you again. We'll see you December 17th. Of course. Well, hey,

[00:48:58] Courtney Garza-McCullagh: have a fun time. I can't wait to hear all about your hopefully Disney adventure if you go.

[00:49:01] Maya Acosta: That's right. Take care. Bye bye. Thank you. Bye. Sprinkles Creative Agency is a creative and digital agency aiming to help change the world with its sweet skills that provides social media management, photography, graphic design, event planning, and marketing, missing a little something. Put sprinkles on it. Let's recap my conversation with Courtney.

[00:49:27] Maya Acosta: So Courtney Garza-McCullagh is a Dallas based entrepreneur and vegan activist. She's the founder of Sprinkles Creative Agency and marketing and social media agency specializing in working with vegan businesses. She's a contributor to VEGWORLD World Magazine in a publication promoting veganism and plant-based living.

[00:49:46] Maya Acosta: Courtney is also passionate about featuring vegan food from around the world during her travels. While our goal was to feature her local vegan bus tours here in Dallas, we also focus on brand awareness. Why is it essential for businesses to increase brand awareness through social media? Social media can connect you with like-minded individuals and create a sense of community.

[00:50:12] Maya Acosta: Social media is also how we learn about vegan-friendly businesses as more people share their experiences with vegan food products and services. By building a solid online presence, companies can create a wider audience and create more growth opportunities. Businesses can build trust and loyalty by engaging with customers personally.

[00:50:36] Maya Acosta: For individuals who love to travel, like Courtney, social Media is ideal for sharing photos and stories of your experience. A solid social media presence can attract businesses that offer travel-related products and services. These companies may wanna partner with you for potential collaborations. In other words, social media is mutually beneficial for the influencer as it is.

[00:50:59] Maya Acosta: For the business. If you're interested in hiring Courtney to manage your social media accounts or for any other marketing needs, you can reach her at the link that I will add in the show notes. And if you're interested in attending one of her vegan tours, visit Dallas by chocolate.com and look for the vegan options because those are the ones that Courtney leads.

[00:51:21] Maya Acosta: I'd love to hear from. In terms of what you think about this episode, about brand awareness and all that good stuff. And stay tuned because the next week or the next episode is going to be my interview with Dr. Will Tuttle, the guest that's coming December 13th. So stay tuned for that as well. And it's always my friends.

[00:51:40] Maya Acosta: Thank you for being a listener. You've been listening to the Healthy Lifestyle Solutions Podcast with your host, Maya Acosta. If you've enjoyed this podcast, do us a favor and share with one friend who can benefit from this episode. Feel free to leave us an honest review on Apple Podcast that helps us to spread our message. Thanks for listening.