Tag Archives: health

Garden Update

I figured it was about time I gave you guys a garden update.

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This spring I didn’t have a chance to get my seeds started early so I pretty much planted as late as I ever have. As I was telling my friend Nelson, who does an awesome job running the Metuchen Farmer’s Market, my gardening philosophy is to take whatever I have and throw it in the ground…

So here’s what has come up

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Kabocha Squash

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Kale and Mystery Squash

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Tomatoes

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Tomatoes

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Borage

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Calendula

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Asparagus

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“Permaculture”

I also have these wild flower looking weeds that have really come in, thanks to my lack of weeding and making it more of a “permaculture” type plot. If anyone knows what these are please let me know!

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Mystery Flowers

What do you have growing in your garden??

LIEBSTER AWARD:

I want to thank my friend Charanya from Yes I’m Vegan 🙂 for nominating me. Below are the rules and questions to answer:

Rules for this award:

  • Thank and link back the person who presented the award to you.
  • Have the award on your post.
  • Answer the questions that has been asked.
  • Award the same to other upcoming blogs.

Charanya’s Questions

  1. What’s your favorite cuisine? Too many! Middle Eastern Maybe
  2. What would be the last meal you will love to eat? Something Indian or Falafel
  3. What is your favorite vege? Changes every day!
  4.  Do you watch Game of Thrones? Yes, though I am behind but have read through book 5
  5.  If you are vegan, why? If not, do you think you could be one for few days? at first it was fr health reasons but as I did more research my reasons became more ethical and environmental
  6.  Is there anything your life wont be the same without? Nope not really
  7.  What’s your favorite movie? Too many to name! I love bad movies!!
  8.  Is there any color you loved as a kid? Green, now my fave is red
  9.  Is there anything you would change in your life if life had a rewind button?
  10.  Do you own an iphone or an android? iPhone
  11. 3 words that could describe you: Passion, Loyal, Independent

My nominees are:

1. Vegan Flavorista
2. Earthpages.org
3. A Lazy Girl Goes Green
4. Veganomics
5. The Novice Gardener
6. Vegan Muffin Woman
7. Epicurean Vegan

My questions are:

1. What is your favorite book?
2. What gets you up in the morning?
3. What color best describes you?
4. What do you do for fun?
5. If you could make one thing in the world right, what would that be?

It’s National Nutrition Month!

It’s National Nutrition Month! Now what?

"Image courtesy of Grant Cochrane / FreeDigitalPhotos.net".

“Image courtesy of Grant Cochrane / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”

I bet a lot of you had no idea that there is a  National Nutrition Month and that it’s in March. I know I didn’t until I started  my dietetics program. Isn’t that a shame. We get an entire month to celebrate beautiful dishes and healthy eating and hardly anyone knows about it.

How am I celebrating NNM? Well I like to think that I celebrate nutrition and healthy living all year round so I will keep doing what I am doing plus a few other things including trying new foods and new recipes. I have a NNM challenge for all of you. Try four new recipes and four new foods. So far I have made vegan tofu cream cheese and vegan chocolate chip cookies, I have also made mung beans which, believe it or not, I have never prepared.

mung beans

You may be wondering what to try, I think a trip to an ethnic grocery store could be a lot of fun. We have tons of Asian grocery stores and there’s always something interesting to try. I’ve been hooked on cassava, also known as yuca. I’m used to seeing it frozen in the bag but lately I have been buying the root and preparing it in the steamer. Something as simple as that will count for the challenge.

I saw and tasted a ton of great products at the NYC Vegetarian Food Festival, I don’t have any photos because I was too busy eating everything! Yay me! I have two more recipes to try and thanks to vegfest two new foods to taste.  Yikes and we only have a few weeks left, I have to think of what else I want to make and try, so do you! I would love to hear what you tried and made for my  NNM challenge. Please feel free to share in the comments section. And yes, the recipe and the new food can be part of the same dish.

PS I’ve launched my cooking show on YouTube here’s the latest episode!

Love yourself & Happy Veganniversary to me!

February always brings out the lovey dovey in me. Even though we have a good foot of snow in the front yard and another coming over the weekend I can’t help to feel the love.

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This marks the 4-year anniversary of my going vegan, the 4-year birthday of this blog and the 3-year anniversary of when we adopted our beloved Luke. So with all of the crap out there I have something good to hold on to.

Surrounding yourself with great things and appreciating what you have I think begins the journey to loving yourself. We all focus that Valentine’s Day love on so many others that some of you forget to focus on the one that needs the most love –  YOU!

So go ahead and love yourself a little harder this month, and find those things that make you happy and keep you going because you will project those good vibes on to others and I promise you that the lovefests will ensue.

PS: Stay tuned for monthly recipes shows on my YouTube channel. I am excited to launch the January (yes a little late) Episode this weekend!

New Year, New You, NO! BETTER YOU!!

The new year means getting bombarded with New Year, New You messages. I know because I have sent them myself. It also signals a time when people feel free to let you know that you just can’t cut it and a “New You” armed with resolutions looks so much better…

I say the heck with all those people who want to change you. I don’t want to change you, I want you to get BETTER!! A better you wants to make positive changes and improve on what you have already accomplished. A better you has goals, SMART* goals at that, and knows that the little things complete the big picture.

I don’t want to hear about your resolutions, I want to hear about your GOALS. I’ll share some of mine to get you thinking. Keep in mind that goals are very personal and really only matter to you. So go ahead and think about what you want to improve upon for 2014.

GOALS:

  • Fitness: Continue with fitness 45 min at least 3 times a week and add 10 min of yoga for flexibility; find a regular workout time by Feb.
  • Health: In conjunction with fitness, monitor food intake to reasonable levels (I can eat like no body’s business!) Keep a food journal and track intake 5 days a week.
  • Business: Work consistently and acquire additional clients (virtual assisting & wellness coaching) before March. Becoming more visible, somehow…
  • Family: Spend as much quality time as possible with my fur babies and stay in touch with the kids.
  • Social: Try to keep the social connections even if it means a quick text to say hey how ya doin? (This one is tough because of school and work).
  • Creativity: Read books for pleasure – read at least 2 books per month. Writing a book will come next year 🙂

Your turn! Sometimes it helps putting things “out there”, makes you more accountable

*SMART: Sustainable, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic/Relevant, Timely

Be careful for what you wish for…

OK, in my last post I had a garden wishlist and well, yeah, since then I started a lot of seeds. Sometimes what you wish for is a good thing and comes true. Check out what’s been growing since we last chatted:

Kabucha Squash

Kabucha Squash

Zucchini

Zucchini

Black Beans

Black Beans

Squash Trifecta

Cucumber, Spaghetti & Butternut Squash

Mammoth Sunflowers

Mammoth Sunflowers

Calabasa

Calabasa (Pumpkin)

Sweet, huh, all were planted between 4/5 – 4/9. I am very happy and can’t wait to transplant them next month. Our last frost date is 5/15, though I have a feeling we are done for the season, I hope!

There was something else that I wished for that didn’t turn out quite as well as my seedlings or as I had hoped for. I had a position at a shop that was always a dream job for me, the kind of store I thought I was meant to be working in. I loved the customers, however my values didn’t align with the owner’s and a falling out in January didn’t make it any easier. Why did I stay? Well, I needed the income and the people I met kept me coming in, and quite frankly I liked getting the discount. A few weeks ago I was asked to leave that job and I am glad it happened. I was not happy there and though the customers kept me there I felt my vitality being zapped when I dealt with the owner, which was always. I don’t blame him, I should have left a lot sooner.

The big lesson that I learned from this whole experience is that if something doesn’t feel right then it isn’t. Sometimes it’s not easy to change a situation, however, you have to do what’s right for you. Like plants we all need the right environment to thrive.

Happy Veganniversary To Me!

Crocuses are popping up and I am getting antsy to get dirt under my fingernails, this could only mean one thing. It’s my Veganniversary!

SPRING!!
It’s also this blog’s third birthday. So what have we been up to for the last three years? Good thing you asked!

In addition to going natural (as in hair), we have left the corporate world and embarked on a new academic world.

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We have been to quite a few health and wellness conferences and a couple of vegetarian ones too.

the seed vegan expWe held our own workshops

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We have planted and picked dozens of veggies.

Nurtured with Nature

We have encountered countless amazing people.

The Seed - MY Vegan Experience

NYC Vegetarian Food Festival!

We have tasted and revised dozens of recipes, not all ours.

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We have lost a few loved ones and brought some into our hearts and lives.

Have we got a VIDEO??

Backend/Frontend Report

We have fostered dogs.

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We have cried and laughed, sometimes at the same time.

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We survived a hurricane and power outage

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We entered a chili contest or two

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And we think we might actually be able to start seeds indoors this year.

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Thanks for being there through the thick and thin, here’s to another three or more like thirty years! I love you all!

Have you seen any UFOs lately?

I don’t know about you but I have seen a lot of UFOs out there. Unidentified Food Objects. OK so I can’t take credit for that one, I saw Mark Bittman speak back in September and he gave a great talk on food and what our food system has become.

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Here we have cheese doodles, a food-like object, and carrot sticks. I think it’s a pretty impressive image. I mean really what ARE cheese doodles?

Unfortunately, there are a lot of foods like this. Sometimes we don’t event think twice about them because they are so ubiquitous in our food system, soda comes to mind. And for the record, yes I have had cheese doodles in my lifetime. Can’t say when the last time I had them was, probably once my palate matured since in my opinion they don’t really taste like food.

Kidding aside, you all know how much I push for you to eat real food*. Eating real food can heal the system or at least begin the process. As a culture our industrial food is so full of sugar, salt and fat that many people have no idea what real food tastes like. I was one of them, I used to eat a lot of processed food, it was easy and fast. Now I cringe when I think of the things I ate, and sometimes when I revisit them I am shocked by how sweet, salty and artificial tasting they are. It takes about a month for your taste buds to change when you reduce your intake of salt and sugar, that’s pretty amazing if you ask me and a testament to what the human body is capable of.

So the next time you are tempted by whatever it is in the crap aisle remember that your body and you deserve better.

And to prove that eating real food doesn’t have to be boring…

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Apples ‘n PB
1 Granny Smith Apple
1 Tbsp Peanut Butter
1 Tbsp Flax seeds, ground
1 Tbsp Hemp Seeds
1 Tbsp Chia Seeds
1 Tbsp Cacao Nibs
Nut Milk or Water as needed

Core and wedge the apple into about 8 pieces. In a small bowl combine the peanut butter with the seeds and nibs, add liquid (as much as needed) and whip it with a fork to get a desired consistency. I like it a bit creamy.

Dip the apples in the mixture and enjoy!

Variations: You can use any nut or seed butters that you like. I also add maca powder to the mix. You can also spread on toasted Ezekiel bread and top with a banana.

*real food: foods closest to their natural state such as grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, vegetables and fruit. If it is processed foods then choose those with minimal ingredients, <5.