I am happy to announce to you that winter finally came to town.  I think we got 4-8 inches of snow, and its bitter cold outside.  We ghetto ridged a few of our windows, hanging blankets over them, to keep the cold out. I don’t like the utility bills in the winter.  I do love the snow though.  I love the way snow makes everything look new and magical.  Even ugly or mundane things end up looking beautiful. I have been walking around humming Christmas carols. “Little Miss” started singing, “Baby it’s cold outside! No its not. Yes it is! No its not!  Yes it is.”  Cracked us all up.

After the kids begging me for hours, I finally bundled them up, and we all went outside.  We grabbed all our beach buckets and scoopers and made them into snow toys.  It was freezing lovely. 


It is week two of my Vegan Journey.  I have now been (mainly) vegan for 12 days.  Yesterday I went to Barns & Nobles.  I ate a terribly naughty treat from the B&N cafe, and read some cookbooks on going raw, going vegan, and becoming a herbivore.  Hypocrite.  

Sometimes I feel like reading cookbooks is really amazing… sometimes I don’t.  Especially if they don’t have tons of vivid pictures.  Honestly, while learning never tires me, occasionally I get sick of the attitude behind some of the books I read.  I’m not sure how to explain it, so I won’t.  I’m sorry.  I still had a great time though.  After I abandoned the cookbooks, I read some other books pertaining to health, that didnt’ have any recipes… Ironically, by some of the same authors.

When it comes to changing your family’s eating habits, I suppose the first thing you need to change is what you buy at the grocery store.  Seems reasonable.  Before January’s big grocery shopping adventure, I planned out a bit of a menu, using meals that could easily be enjoyed by me and my non-vegan family.  What I noticed after going shopping was that its really not more expensive to be vegan.  Your money just goes to different things.  I didn’t spend a ton of money on the usual: Chicken, beef, Sausage, cheese, yogurt, and milk. Instead I ended up spending a lot less on those, and a lot more on nuts, fruits, veggies, and a few obscure things like “mung beans.”  Over the last two months I have also transitioned myself into using veggie broth and coconut milk for cooking, so of course, I picked some up.  

So with the staple foods being replaced with new foods, I have had a lot of new and exciting food-ventures, as well as getting into some comfy food ruts. I have eaten a lot of salads.  A lot of oatmeal. We have all had plenty of smoothies, too.    But it hasn’t been boring.  I chop all sorts of stuff up for my salads.  My newest favorite things to add is chopped pear.  Oh, yum!  Every salad is covered with sunflower seeds.  I love the crunch!  My oatmeal is easy and sorta fun.  I chop up apple, add some raisins, cinnamon and flaxmeal.  Another option is to eat cherry’s and slivered almonds with it.  I’m not actually crazy about the oatmeal, but I do love the add-ins.  I throw tons of stuff into my smoothies too:  Mixed salad greens, Kiwis, bananas, prunes, pineapple and coconut milk, to name a few.   I have also ventured out and made somethings I haven’t ever successfully made before: homemade bean burgers, hummus and growing my own sprouts.  Its pretty exciting in my kitchen… Until I have to clean all the dishes.

I am starting to feel that I’m getting to know my way around this new way of eating.  The great thing is, I actually like it.  I feel so great about eating things that I know are truly feeding my body, not just my hips!  I feel like I’m actually eating real food.  That’s a great feeling.

Recipe of the Week:

Yummy Marinara
 3 Roma tomatoes, chopped
1/4 of an onion, chopped
1teaspoon Garlic paste
Dash of paprika
One (small) can of tomato sauce

Bring to a slow boil.  
Add almost 1/4 cup of soaked, pureed cashews, 
(OR almost 1/4 cup pureed chickpeas).
Add a splash of lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste.

This can also be made as a “raw” dish.
This is great because it can be used as dipping sauce for bread, spaghetti sauce, or whatever.  
The first time I made this, I used it over polenta, and it was amazing.  The second time I made it, I poured it over a bowl of chopped garden veggies. 

I like it best with cashews, but either way works great.

Have a great weekend!