Friday, April 14, 2017

2 weeks vegan and some recipes

Tackling something big wont be so overwhelming if we practice a little bit every day. The more and more we do small things, the smaller the task will be, after that... it's just life.
 -from Me... and probably other people-

So last night I had a crazy dream, that I was being chased by a pokemon ball that was spitting strawberries at me, and the only way to make them stop is to throw peas at them, and when the peas touched the pokemon ball it would turn into walnuts and I would eat them. Needless to say, these past two weeks of slowly becoming a vegan has been challenging, but nothing short of learning curves and compromises. 

A couple things I've known to be true, but always try to forget... I (we) have no control over fundamental functions of being a human... 

-You cannot force someone to sleep

-You cannot force someone to eliminate their own personal waste (# 1 nor # 2) 

-You cannot force someone to eat, (unless you interested in jail time for child abuse after gagging it down their throat...)๐Ÿ˜’

If you hadn't already gathered, I'm referring to Husband... haha just kidding, totally talking about our wonderful beautiful children. So after a week of our oldest basically refusing all food, even the food he loves in fear of me possibly sneaking "healthy stuff" in it, (he's so smart).  So we had to make some changes, we had to compromise. First I apologise to them for not respecting them enough to ask them what they'd like to eat, then I took the oldest grocery shopping to pick out some chicken and veggies and fruits of his choosing and some extra "snack foods" (not totally vegan, but still a healthy option). He has also decided to start making his own lunches, in which case I am not complaining. Our youngest is still pretty easy to convince so he's happy and going with the flow. 

Husband seems to be doing well. I'm making most of all the meals, including his lunches. And although it's more work for me in the morning, it is fulfilling to serve my husband and to know that he will be feeling my love in the middle of the day with well thought out vegan meals. While his coworkers make fun of him, of course referring to most of his food as bunny snacks... fitting for Easter, so jokes on them.๐Ÿ˜‰๐Ÿฐ 

As for me, I have found to be completely sensitive to dairy products, specifically cheese. Even the slightest bit makes me bloated and constipated so it's best to just stay away from the stuff. It sucks though because I love greek yogurt on everything, and cheese on a taco or pizza... whats a girl to do?? Well I tried Daiya vegan Cheese; let me tell you, do not try that stuff cold or on its own, but melted in a grilled cheese or over veggies and Naan bread super yummy! I find myself hungry more often, as to be expected. However, instead of mindlessly stuffing my face with whatever, now I have time to really recognize between a craving and what my body is actually needing. What helps is that because I have to prepare and make everything from scratch "fast food" is a thing of the past. So, unless I want a piece of fruit or raw veggies, I'll usually shoot for water. I am finding being intentional and living in each moment is key to growing in this lifestyle. 

I love to cook and put random things together, so this is the most exciting part for me especially because I have so many vibrant colors to work with and don't need to spend an hour defrosting meat or cutting out the white string part of the chicken breast๐Ÿ˜ท. Husband is always both surprised and probably a little scared as to what I'll be making next. But, I am very blessed by his willingness to try everything, his ability to keep his mouth shut in front of the boys when he is disgusted and also his love and support in making this happen for us. I'm so happy to grow old with this guy! 

Here's a couple easy recipes that we love so far: 

Sweet Potato Sliders!
2 sweet potatoes (for two people) 
1 tomato
1 clove of garlic
salt and pepper 

Slice a large sweet potato (wide, to have a large flat surface) Then run the raw tatters under warm water, pat dry. Then put them in toaster, yes, the toaster! on your hottest setting, toast them twice, (pay attention not to burn them). While toasting, cut up fresh garlic, avocados, tomatoes (optional fruit, pears, pineapple, etc). Final step, drizzle EVOO (or oil of your choice) on top of Sweet potato, top with garlic, salt and pepper, then smear avocado, and rest of toppings. 

Taco Tuesday!
1 can of northern white beans
2tbs Cumin (or more to your taste) 
1 tbs of chilli powder
a half a cup of tiny chopped up onions
salt and pepper
2tbs coriander
1 clove of fresh garlic
whatever tortilla you choose
shredded green cabbage

Saute onions and garlic until caramelized, and smells good. In a separate pot, start rehydrating the TVP (see package), and add beans (drained and rinse) to the onions and garlic. Then add TVP. That is basically your "meat", now add your homemade taco seasoning, (all the spices above) maybe also a dash of EVOO and rice wine vinegar. set out "meat" cabbage, and yes regular cheese (remember we are compromising) in separate containers for kids to make their own. The boys ate this all up, huge mess but I didn't care, because my kids ate beans and cabbage with no fuss! I'll take it! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ

We also got a lot of nuts and made trailmix with fresh fruit instead of dried. And made fresh fruit and veggie juices. One of my favorites was my "Beet the Watermelon" root juice:

Beet the Watermelon root juice! 
Juicer or Vitamix... or any other high power blender
a mesh strainer
Beets with greens
carrots (with stems)
2 lemons
water, or coconut water (Adds perfect flavor)

Just blend it all and strain out the pulp enjoy it fresh in the fridge for 4 days or less. Save and freeze the pulp for future fruit smoothie. ❤️

Well this is only the beginning and I have a lot more recipes to share, maybe I will dedicate a whole post to just recipes at some point. As for now, I will end this in saying that I am always being humbled by the three truths I mentioned in the beginning of this post. As an adult I see nothing wrong with just "making things happen", but as a mother, it is my soul job to listen and hear and understand these little gifts I'm raising. I want them to have fond memories of their childhood and to not associate food with trauma nor drama. It is so tough, this parenting thing... we are all growing and trying to figure this all out at the same time. I just hope that when my boys grow up they will see me as an imperfect person constantly trying to do better. 

Saturday, April 1, 2017

A little backed up... Vegan, Day One

I'll make this short, my computer is about to die, and I don't want to give myself any other example of how to get myself out of writing. 

So let's talk constipation. 

Like I said in my previous blog about being a vegetarian back in 2010-2014 as well as throughout the amazing pregnancy of my second son, I was always regular, our whole family was, and it was amazing! but ever since 2014 I have been all kinds of backed up. ๐Ÿ˜ซ
If know one has ever experience this before it's a horrible feeling. Being constipated goes against the nature of your body and really just makes you angry and grouchy. My heart goes out to all of you that have to live with a person tormented by constipation. 

The truth is, these past three years, I have not only been backed up in physically but also emotionally. I feel like since we were out of the military environment and I was trying so hard to please everyone in order to find some friends, with like interests, that I lost part of myself. And when you are meeting new people, you don't want to come off as be picky or high maintenance, you just want to enjoy each other's company and get to know each other without them worrying too much of what Justine eats or doesn't eat. So I started eating anything and everything because I love food and I love good company. But that piece of me that only I can control, was lost. Even despite my husband pleading me to stay vegetarian (because he knows me well and wanted to save me and him from a bunch of whining and complaining about not sticking to anything... which is also why I'm trying to keep writing this blog). Anyway, I made the switch and it caused a downward spiral of my trying to find myself again.  When truth be told we are all always evolving, changing, and growing. And now I want and am ready to make the change for the better, in hopes of elevating both... number two.. and to release the pressure of trying to please everyone else, I think I'm ready to try to just accept myself for who I am. (I am a little weird, oh well, and I like it) Truth is the people that appreciate me for me are worth having as my friend. I am so thankful for the friends that have already proven this to be true.

April First, Vegan... Day One, 

  • Green smoothie (Kale, pinapple, ginger, chia seeds), before coffee (michigan cherry!)
  • veggie skillet (sweet potatoes, red pepper, zuchini, egg substitute) 
  • salad 
  • dinner... not sure I'm a horrible meal and life planner, hoping to get better with this by making this blog my daily food journal. ๐Ÿ˜Ž
As I will always admit that I am not perfect and I love all food... just trying to get back to myself so I can live long and serve others well. 

Thank you for reading. ❤️


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2 weeks vegan and some recipes

Tackling something big wont be so overwhelming if we practice a little bit every day. The more and more we do small things, the smaller t...