Monday, December 31, 2012

I can do this... right? ;)

Last day of 2012.  Tomorrow begins the vegan adventure.

I've been reading up on the vegan lifestyle since August and I suppose the reason I thought it was going to be easier was because most of our lunches and dinners are already vegan.  What I didn't stop to think was that our breakfasts and snacks revolve heavily around yogurt and eggs.  

Im sure there are great vegan alternatives for yogurt but I'm not willing to pay the steep prices our local grocers tag them with.   Part of our new year regimen includes saving as much cash as possible for the wedding we have yet to set a date for!  At $4+ for a container of soy yogurt, I'm going to have to pass.  Plus I think I would prefer coconut yogurt rather than soy.   

As for the eggs -- well I'm making peace with the fact that I will not die if I don't have that delicious little runny yolk mixed with spicy Sriracha sauce for a month. My little egg with the sriracha drawn heart and avocado toast has become one of my absolute favorite meals....  le sigh... I can do without, seriously I can....   

In my heart of hearts I would love to say this is the beginning of a more permanent switch but as things stand right now I can't imagine myself going hardcore vegan having to bring my own meals to get togethers or "poo-poo" other peoples foods when offered.  

As a recovering binge eater I'm still far too lost to dedicate my lifestyle to a cause other than whats best for me right here and right now.   As for Abel, he's not too worried about it all. (Of course!)  He's so open to changes and is already looking into what Vegan restaurant options we have around here for our 4 year anniversary next month.  

For now I can tell you what materials I've collected in preparations for this little experience.  

The past few days I have been found scouring The Happy Herbivore.  The site as well as her facebook page.  I've had the first two of her books for a while but only dabbled in a few of the recipes.  I've recently gotten her third book and I'm fairly certain the majority of our meals will be coming from her books next month. 

I also have a slew of websites that I follow with vegan and vegetarian options but I'll have to take the time to compile the actual list.  My favorite thus far is Angela from OhSheGlows   As luck would have it, she posted today that she's working on a Vegan How-To series which you can believe I'm going to be watching like a hawk.  

Her Cozy millet bowl w/Mushroom Gravy and Kale is out of this world delicious.  Also today I noticed she has a 10 minute yogurt recipe that may help us not to have to pay ridiculous prices for non dairy yogurt. 

I have a few other options when it comes to vegan books and recipes but that will come once I compile the list and get a chance to play favorites.

As for the book that started this entire lifestyle, Cynthia Sass's Sass Yourself Slim, it goes without saying we are still following it day in and day out.   Without the knowledge that book has provided us we wouldn't be where we are today.   Though this is the end of the year I am waiting on writing an udpated review of the book for the end of March (the 1 year anniversary with SASS).  

This will definitely be an interesting year for Abel and I, and I'm anxious to get it started.  Happy New Year to you guys and your loved ones!!  Farewell 2012!!! 

Friday, December 28, 2012

Preparing for 2013, we are still here!

We had no intentions of abandoning this blog of ours, life just took us away for a while and any chance I've had to take a breather has been far too short lived.  Lets face it, the last thing you want to do when you're exhausted and crabby is gather your thoughts on how responsibly (or irresponsibly) your eating has been.

That said, it's been a struggle the last six weeks for me to stay on track.  Mainly because of stress -- there's nothing more "convenient" than working at a bakery when you are in desperate need of comfort.  I accept full responsibility for the last 5 (or so) pounds I have put on since the end of October.  

At least the last I knew about it was a 5 pound gain.  Nothing to mope about nor worthy of shedding tears over at least.

Aside from my sneaking in of too many work cookies, Abel and I have still been following our menu board day in and day out.  I'm getting in all of my veggies and fruits and I can at least be proud to report nothing has changed in that respect.

We're still incorporating the SASS Yourself Slim strategy to our meals and Abel is down at least another 5 pounds from where he was in our last weigh in.  He now stands as my personal role model because even with a few holiday treats here and there he's managed to keep it all fully balanced.   Something that makes me wonder if I'm in denial as to just how lax I've been with my own eating. 

Nevertheless, we have set up a new challenge for ourselves to kick off 2013.   After watching the documentary Vegucated on Netflix a few weeks ago we decided to try going Vegan for the month of January.  

Some of you may recall we went meatless in August  and quite frankly ever since then, I don't think meat of any kind has been i n our grocery cart more than 4 times.  We've fallen in love with beans and chickpeas and even though we both think vegan lifestyle is too extreme for us, the documentary was more than enough to say we'd like to give it a shot. 

I've seen other documentaries before and though I generally feel inspired after each of them, this one managed to hit a little deeper within my core.  Mainly because of the treatment of animals.

I've heard the stories of how the animals go from the farms to our plates.  "Yes animals die, lets all get over it"... that was my particular attitude towards it at least.   Not once did I stop to think how they were treated or how they lived prior to their death sentence though.   Believe you me I am personally not a big fan of animals in the first place (lack of a trust factor) but that doesn't mean I want them to suffer all of their lives for the sake of my breakfast. 

If you haven't already seen it I would definitely recommend it.  I won't go as far as saying its "life changing" but it's definitely interesting.  Most of the documentary involves following three individuals who volunteer for a vegan challenge and seeing what kind of changes going vegan brings their bodies.   Its interesting if nothing else.  

Personally, as affected as I was by the documentary I am not about to tell you its enough to turn me around  overnight vowing to never touch an animal product again but it IS enough for me to accept a 30 day challenge AND do what I can to ween myself away.  The entire concept was Abels idea and he's not certain where it will take him either but I'm sure his newfound "foodie" lifestyle is quite anxious to keep trying new things and thats where his commitment will come from. 

With so many "rules" to who can and cant call themselves vegan it's got me leary enough to even wonder if I can call what we are attempting "veganism" but if I may say, its the attempt and the endeavor that I stand behind, we're not here to earn badges nor entitlements to step on soap boxes.  We're just here doing what we do for reasons of our own.  Its a new chapter, new experience, new findings...  keepint it all positive without the black and white rules that deem us as successes or failures.  

That said, we'll see what January brings and I trust that any readers who may still be out there are having a wonderful holiday season!