Sometimes people surprise you

Where I work they give us a mug full of candy each year for your anniversary. Usually the candy is a bunch of milk chocolate. My second anniversary was last week, and today I came in to find my anniversary mug filled (mostly) with vegan candy. Someone I work with had gone to the trouble to pick candy like Twizzlers, taffy, even some Craisins. There were a couple of non-vegan things that had gelatin in them... but it's the thought that counts.


Love it when the company caters food for us...

Not! Today was the monthly birthday "treat" day. As usual, nothing I'll eat. A selection of baby bundt cakes from The Corner Bakery, covered in icing. I actually tried to find the nutrition information on their website - not there. Surprisingly, they don't want to tell people just how much fat and calories they're consuming with their baked goods.

On my search, I decided to go look at Einstein Bros Bagel's nutrition information and found that one of my old favorites, the Fruit & Nut Power Bagel, has an egg wash. Why? None of their regular bagels do... why this one? So I wrote them a polite nasty-gram telling them how stupid and foul it was for them to do that.

Plus side... had two different conversations with folks in my department today about being vegan and what I eat.


The Big Bread

Made the Big Bread recipe from VegWeb.com to take to a potluck. It was so easy!

My oven's inaccurate temp guage strikes again. A little dark, but still be edible - yummy in fact!



The Spiral Diner has a new specials menu! Stroganoff is on there, so I had to have some, and it was awesome! Chase it down with an almond milk latte, and I'm in vegan heaven :-)


The "Mitch" Tofu Club @ Spiral Diner

Grilled tofu, tomato, lettuce, Baco bits, Chipotle mayo & avocado, w/ their fantastic potato salad! YUM!



Borders had Veganomicon displayed in the center aisle on a display titled "For the Foodie" between two Barefoot Contessa cookbooks... can't decide if it's a good thing to be lumped in with the foodies.

All You Can Eat Pancakes!

Cranberry pecan pancakes at the Spiral Diner, with an almond milk mocha... I think I believe in heaven now.


Celebration Roast!

Being pretty lazy Thursday night, I pulled some stuff outof the fridge to toss together. I ended up warming up some leftover Celebration Roast, smothered in brown gravy with mushrooms. Some quick home fries on the side, and it was comfort food, quick and easy. Absolutely delish!


Pumpkin Nut Bread

I made this last night from a favorite pre-vegan recipe. I substituted flax "eggs" and soymilk for the animal secretions. I truly cannot tell the difference from when I made it before going vegan. Yum!


Spiral Diner!

Had some wonderful chik'n noodle soup and corn muffins at the Spiral Diner tonight. I love eating there because it's all vegan. It's just a little hard to choose sometimes, since there are so many wonderful options.


Massive bowl of hummus Yum!

Made a giant bowl of hummus for a Vegan Freak meetup tonight. Fantastic stuff!


Vegans have a 50% reduced risk of diabetes and 40% reduced risk of cancer! Live healthy live vegan!


Butter Pecan!

One thing that keeps many people from going vegan is the thought of missing favorite foods. These days, there are vegan versions of all sorts of things. One of my big loves was always ice cream. The quality of non-dairy ice creams has come so far that you can't even tell the difference with many of the flavors out there.

Case in point: Soy Dream Butter Pecan. This stuff is fantastic! It tastes as good as, or better than, any butter pecan ice cream I've ever had.


According to a United Nations report the livestock industry produces 18 percent more greenhouse gas than all cars in world!


Pizza Feast!

My roommate and I made this awesome pizza with onion, zucchini, mushrooms, bell peppers, spinach, tofu ricotta, and black olives. Absolutely delicious!


Newest member of the family

His name is Han Solo - Solo for short. He was the only one of his litter to survive so someone suggested Solo and since I'm such a geek, Han Solo he became :D


New Shoes!

Found some great new (non-leather) shoes yesterday at Payless. I have a hard time finding shoes because of my large feet (women's size 12), so I'm always on the lookout. I'm hoping by this time next year to have replaced most, if not all, of my leather shoes with non-leather stuff.

I found a great brand called Annie's online at Zappos.com. The bulk of their stuff seems to be all man-made materials, most of their styles were in the $50 range, and they have lots of styles in my size. My plan is to buy a pair every month or so until I've got a decent wardrobe of work shoes built up.

I thought I was going to gradually replace my pregan leather items as they wore out, but every time I wear them I'm constantly reminded that I'm wearing the skin of what was once another living being - and I just can't continue much longer.


Cleaning out cupboards

I spent the better part of my weekend going through my kitchen and bathroom cabinets. This is a chore I've been putting off for quite some time, but I couldn't stand it any longer.

I threw out a good sized garbage bag of items that weren't vegan, and it felt great. Still got a ways to go, but I'm slowly getting there. I had intended to use up my non-vegan toiletries, but the thought of using items that were manufactured with cruelty and death has begun to weigh heavily on me. I still have a large amount of cleaning supplies that I'm not sure I can continue using much longer.

There are a few things I still have no choice on for the moment. Any medications are automatically not vegan, and I have one that I can't stop taking yet. I don't have the money to replace all my shoes for work yet. But any new purchases I buy will be vegan.

The longer I am vegan, and the more I learn, the more I realize how oblivious I've been to the suffering infused in the products I use. What I used to think of as unreasonable, now seem to be the only ethically consistent choices to make.
Every hour over one million animals are killed for food in the US. If each of us cut our intake by 10% 1 billion animals would be spared per year


Texas Steak CookOff = Texas Cattle Massacre

My family wants me to go to a steak cookoff in Hico, Texas, that my cousin is competing in. I've gone in past years, when I was pre-vegan, but now all I'd be able to think about is how many cows were massacred for some little podunk town to draw in some tourists. Besides, I'm not sure I could stand the smell - blech!

No, I believe I'll pass this year - and every year - in the interest of family harmony, and my own sanity. I'd just spend the day getting more disgusted and angry by the minute. And they're not going to change, so why waste my energy on something so futile? I could be blogging instead!


Cooking Meat Smells Gross

I always used to think I loved the smell of meat cooking. I've discovered that it's really just the spices I love the smell of - the garlic, rosemary, pepper, etc... The smell of plain unadorned meat truly grosses me out now. And eggs always did smell gross while cooking. When I used to eat eggs, I put so much other stuff in them (onion, garlic, etc...) that it covered the smell. But someone was frying eggs the other day, and I had to leave the room.

I've recently heard the argument that because humans are actually plant-eaters, we are naturally disgusted by the look, feel, smell and taste of meat. This is why we have to change it so much in order to be able to eat it. We remove it as far from its original source as possible. We cut it into small pieces that in no way resemble the animal it came from. We cover it in spices (made from plants) to cover the taste, and we cook it to change the texture from squishy and slimy to a firmer texture and consistency that is closer to that of plants.

The longer I'm vegan, the more I re-sensitize to my natural disgust at the sight and smell of animal flesh. I recently saw a tape of knife demonstration that was very disturbing. The demonstrator had a huge slab of cow flesh hung from a hook and was slashing and stabbing at it to show how "effective" each of the knives were. After just a few moments of watching him slash these gaping wounds, into what was once a beautiful and gentle creature, I got nauseous and had to turn away.


Vegan For Life

I love being vegan. I eat so much more interesting food than I ever did as an omnivore, and definitely more healthy food. The best part is that I feel light, as if a burden has been lifted. I don't have the constant inner struggle with the guilt of knowing living beings were being killed and tortured merely for the pleasure of my tastebuds. I wrote a poem almost two years ago after seeing dairy cows in small muddy lots all across California. Let's just say they didn't look like happy cows to me...

California Dairy Cows

Black and white

milk machines bred for

my dining pleasure. Standing

foot deep in mud and

urine. Udders swollen with

food for stolen calves you will

never see again.

For my mint-chocolate-chip, you

will never graze green pastures. For

sour cream on a baked potato, you

sleep in shit. Buttering my toast

is cruel and unusual


I don't have that guilt anymore and it feels wonderful. Franz Kafka is said to have summed it up very well while looking at fish in an aquarium...

"Now I can look at you in peace; I don't eat you any more."