Vegan is becoming much more popular and more of a household word, yet so many still struggle with the idea of it. Or maybe you're confused about what exactly it is. For those of you that have been following my blog for some time know that I am a strict vegan but am not one to preach. BUT, a lot of people have questions and more and more are interested in switching over to the vegan lifestyle. Studies continue to come out that praise the vegan lifestyle for its vast health benefits. Thankfully there are so many documentaries, books, websites, etcetera today to help those who have interest.
My goal for this post is to provide a basic resource for anyone who is anywhere on the spectrum: a wholehearted meat-eater that is just wondering what the heck a vegan even really is, to the skeptic, to the flexitarian, to someone who wants to dip their toes in the vegan lifestyle, to the dedicated vegans. We can all learn just a little more. You should learn something new every day, right?
In my old blog space, I wrote a post about my reasoning for being vegan, read it here. I have found that there are lot of people out there that have tried being vegan, but they quit, saying it was too hard. Or people that see my lunch everyday and think it must be a lot of work for me. But the truth is, if you're organized and educated in how things are prepared and what goes into different dishes, it is truly easy! Some may say it is a social complication, but personally I've decided that this is something that matters to me and therefore is easy to follow-through.
There is a spectrum from flexitarian all the way to vegan, below will give you the quick run-down.
Flexitarian (semi-vegetarian): an omnivore who isn't ready to fully commit to the vegetarian lifestyle, but is reducing his/her meat consumption.
Pescetarian: people who eat seafood, dairy and eggs, but no other meat.
Ovo-Lacto Vegetarian: a person who doesn't eat any meat or fish, but does consume products produced by animals like dairy (lacto) and eggs (ovo). Some vegetarians are solely lacto vegetarians.
Vegan: a person who refrains from using/consuming any animal product for food, clothing or any other purpose. This goes beyond meat, but also includes eggs, dairy products and other animal-derived substances
Forks Over Knives — this is the documentary that finally convinced my husband!
Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead — this documentary focuses mostly on the benefits of juicing, which is a whole other subject for another day
And of course, the all famous Super Size Me
Skinny Bitch — this book is a bit vulgar but is blunt and filled with great research
The Crazy Sexy Diet
The Kind Mama — I am super excited for this book! It is being released this April and covers vegan pregnancy!
The China Study
NutritionFacts.org — So this website has excellent info and videos, my husband swears by it!
Post Punk Kitchen
Vegan Yum Yum
Oh She Glows
There are so many other sites that I could send you to — the world wide web is so vast — these are just a few good ones to get you started.
Like the online resources, there are so many amazing cookbooks out there and ones that are continually getting published, below are a few that I like having on my shelf...
Vegan Eats World
The Conscious Cook
Vedge — a new cookbook I received for Christmas and am still exploring
Oh my, there are so many more (you should see my bookshelf)...But also, I have non-vegan cookbooks that I modify to fit my eating-style.
If you ever have any questions about this lifestyle, you are more than welcome to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I am not an expert but have spent many years doing my own research and self-experimentation. Do the research, do a 30-day trial, find what is best for you!
So what does a snow day look like around your house?
Ours looks like a bundled up dog wearing socks as boots, held on with hair ties...poor thing!
But really, for us it is a bitter feels like temperature of -40, high of -12, low of -17. Bitter is the right word for that! BRR. Well, we are staying inside with many layers and blankets.
Today I am thankful for my warm house with a working heater.
I am thankful for the food in my refrigerator.
I am thankful for a laptop that I can work from home on.
But most of all, I am thankful for my mom who always created memories for me as a child.
I remember as a small girl when we'd get a fresh snowfall, my mom would send me outside with a bowl to gather snow. I would come inside and we'd make snow (ice) cream. Needless to say I haven't had it in years and Husband had never had it (only yellow snow — just kidding)! So of course with the recent excess snowfall, we made snow (ice) cream!
1 c plain soy milk (you can use whatever milk you prefer)
1/3 c granulated sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 pinch of salt
8 c of clean snow (more or less)
In a large bowl, whisk soy milk, sugar, vanilla and salt together.
Bundle up and quickly run outside in the arctic air and scoop up some clean white snow!
Immediately run back inside and stir it into the soy milk mixture until it is your preferred ice cream texture (fluffy and not runny). Snow (ice) cream melts quickly so enjoy right away. Top with your favorite sundae toppings or even sprinkles! YUM.
Have you ever made snow (ice) cream? What fun memories do you have as a child or are making with your own kids today?
A few years back in my old blog space I wrote about picking a word for the new year. This year it is INTENTIONAL.
I feel like so many people wait on the sidelines of their life, me included. We're waiting for something...but what? I want to be intentional. I want to live this life I've been given —and guess what? We each only get one life! I want a life full of adventure, full of stories. So full that when I am old and gray, I want stacks of filled journals, boxes upon boxes of photographs, memories that need to be told to the next generations and the wrinkles to match it all. I want my life to be a fully written story and the only way to have this sort of life is having an INTENTIONAL life.
There are thing I miss dearly — hobbies and such. Why am I not doing them? There are places I want to visit. New activities and adventures to be had. The only way to accomplish these are with a life of INTENTION.
So 2014 be ready to be fully lived and stretched because you're going to be the INTENTIONAL year.
Last night we didn't ring in the new year in the most glamourous fashion, but we decided to have a quiet night and go to the theatre, which we hardly do. Husband and I saw The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. I highly recommend the film, especially as we start a new year. On top of being especially creative and talented filming, the message strikes home. It is charming and about self-discovery. I'll leave it at that — just see it — you'll thank me.
Anyway, curious to all who are reading out there, do you have a 2014 word? If not, think about it...what would it be? Share in the comments section below, I'd love to hear!
here, and order one as a constant reminder to live your 2014 word!
Go. Live. 2014.