Little Lad's Herbal Corn is Crack Corn

Posted on 9:11 PM In:
it is zesty and spicy and delicious and has all of the addictive characteristics of crack... can't get enough.

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Day 19 - Holy Strawberries Batman!!

Posted on 7:51 PM In: ,
So, what does one do with 12 1/2 lbs of fresh picked strawberries? Back in the old days, I made shortcake... today I freeze them while I figure it out. I will make some jam once I find the right type of pection, I see some smoothies in my future... and probably some strawberry margaritas!

I had one of the most amazing discoveries this week - Silly's! My girlfriend Jen came down from L-Town to visit and I wanted to try out someplace new for dinner, and also someplace where she wouldn't go on her own as she does not come to Portland that often. I had read about Silly's in a few spots so I decided to give it a shot. Holy yummers! I had the special, which was called the Farmer Boy - a veggie burger on focaccia with vegan spicy sauce with hand-cut french fries with more vegan spicy sauce. Then, Jen had another special called Corntastic that was this bowl of Mexican food... corn tortillas with some ground beef... I saw cheese, salsa, sour cream and guacamole and she loved it! We had a couple of beers and because they were on my trusty PDA (Portland Dine Around) we dined on the cheap, not that it would have broken the bank full-boat.

This whole thing with my other half and what I have "done to him" because of my choice to be vegan doesn't seem to be going away. In a fit of rage today, he advised me that he didn't marry a vegan... I will stop there with the rest of what we said to each other, but it only went downhill from there. I have no idea if anyone is even reading this, but if you are, and you have had or currently have similar challenges, I would love some advice. I always accommodate his desire to still eat meat and cheese with what I prepare for dinner, so it's not like he's choking on the veggies... and I have not even brought tofu into the house, I just don't get it. If your spouse is making a choice that is improving their health and potentially removing some of their chronic pain from the equation, why wouldn't you be happy about it?!?!? Is it just me or is this really too much to expect of your spouse?

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Day 16

Posted on 8:29 AM In: ,
It's Day 16 and I'm not wavering. I feel good, my back doesn't hurt as consistently as it used to when I got out of bed and... I'm wearing clothes I have not worn in some time. Sweet!

The past few days have been very challenging though. Saturday I went to the veg food fest at USM and I really enjoyed it... tried some great food, joined a vegan meetup in an effort to expand my like-minded friends. The food was catered by The Pepper Club and it was all scrumptious. Then Sunday came... Ever since I started this new lifestyle, we have been in search for a brunch place that could accommodate. Now I understand having anything close to breakfast without cheese or eggs is going to be a challenge, but I am not completely discouraged. So, we went to The Good Egg, which is The Pepper Club's morning-time alter-ego. I was so disappointed. The only thing I could eat was granola with fruit - they were even out of rice milk! The granola was pretty good, but the fruit was melon... who eats cantaloupe with their granola?? I wanted berries. I got cantaloupe. Oh, and it was $7. grumble. grumble. grumble. Needless to say, I left disappointed and hungry. Then my biggest challenge yet: Last night, I went to a going away party and I loved all the food there, but aside from a plate of grapes and strawberries, it was all off limits. (My disclaimer: this was a private party of meat loving folks, so I fully expected to not be able to partake in the food. It's one of those things us vegans have to learn to live with - no biggie! But knowing who cooked it and how freakin' delicious it was was challenging all the same.) But, the good news is that I stuck to it and ate some delicious rice and lentils when I got home. Phew!

The reward? This morning, I got up with no back pain and while getting ready for work, I put on a pair of capris that I have not comfortably worn all spring. Nice!

Ciao!

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I don't watch Oprah...

Posted on 7:12 AM In: ,
... but unless you live in a cave, you can't help but hear someone, somewhere make reference to her. I was reading a recent blog and I read something about Oprah going vegan for 21 days (wimp... apparently she can't commit to the 30 days like yours truly). Then, I was at the gym on Thursday, I heard some verbiage from a preview for one of those TV magazine shows that led me to believe she was done her 21 days of veganism. So I was curious...

I went to oprah.com and checked her blog on her 21 day "fast" and verified she is indeed done. I was curious what she did, why she did it and what the end results were. Bottom line, she did this fast as a result of reading a book, she was happy to be done and she was looking forward to adding meat and Bordeaux back to her diet. I can't relate.


Day 12

First of all, I have not eliminated alcohol from my diet. Not that I am a big drinker, but knowing I can have a beer or a glass of wine when I want to is good. And second, I do not miss meat; instead, I am really having fun exploring the new foods I can eat. I have made some pretty cool recipes and tried out some pretty good food. I do have to say, I made a curry the other night, which ended being more like a chili and it was screaming for sour cream or cheese or something... but it was fine without it. I just feel good. I am losing weight, I never feel icky after I eat and my back may be getting a little better.

I bought a book the other day called Veganomicon. It is packed full of some really cool recipes and I am looking forward to experimenting with some of them. I am also going to check out the Veggie Food Fest this weekend at USM. Food is a good thing!

That's all for now.

Have a great day / weekend.

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Vegan For Thirty Days

Posted on 8:24 PM In:
For reasons that are plentiful, I have decided to make some changes to what I put in my body and try out a vegan diet with extras for thirty days.

I like to think that I ate fairly healthy to begin with... I always loved fruits & veggies (I could sit and eat a quart of blueberries without blinking), aways opted for whole grain anything and shied away from the bad whites (flour, sugar, rice). All that said, I had some vices: I drank a minimum of 5 Diet Pepsi's a day (it was my coffee), I enjoyed real good micro brew beer and there was no such thing as too much cheese.


So, my vegan diet with extras... extras, you say? Yes, well in addition to removing all the animal products from my diet, I am also eliminating Diet Pepsi and all the bad whites. I am going to do my best to eat organic where I can, but in the interest of not doubling my grocery bill and therefore putting my husband completely over the edge, I will not be as strict on that point.

Today is Day 8. Hindsight being what it is, I wish I would have started this last Monday, June 9th when this endeavor began, but better late than never, right?

My goal here is to document my journey: what works, what doesn't and how I feel along the way. In addition, I am sure how my husband feels will sneak in as he has already shared much of his feelings about this and shed light on things I had not considered. So, here we go...


Day 8:

I have not had a Diet Pepsi since Sunday June 8th and the cravings are all but gone. I suffered from some pretty good headaches the first couple of days, but they have subsided. I do not miss meat at all. I miss cheese and I miss brunch at my favorite restaurant, The Frog & Turtle in Westbrook. (James, the owner, has already given me his thoughts on my experiment, reminding me his scrumptious donuts contain eggs - thanks James).


My initial feelings about this experiment were those of intimidation. I do not have any vegan friends to call upon for advice. Luckily, a very good friend of mine Amy pointed me in the direction of a phenomenal blog entitled Commune Tested, City Approved. The dialog is great and so far, the recipes are fantastic. Bo, my husband is working tonight, so after the gym I came home and experimented with Pad Thai, a recipe I found on the fore mentioned blog. Check it out:



It was really good and the recipe can be found here. (Admittedly, hers has a much prettier presentation.) The taste is a bit more peanuttier than I am used to but the all the flavors are very full, fresh with a little heat. Next time, I think I will experiment with additional vegetables and more heat. Also, I am not happy with the noodles I got this time, rice noodles from Hannaford. Next time, I will make the effort to go to Vientiane Market and hopefully find something a bit more authentic.

As far as how I feel, I feel really good. As a whole when I eat, I feel full and satisfied and not at all deprived. Yes, there are places I will miss going to eat, but the way I see it, this forces me to get out and check out restaurants I may not have checked out before.

Another recipe I have tried that has worked out well are these yummy Rockin Roasted Vegetable Burritos. I made them with some chili tortillas I found at Whole Foods. There are things I have tried that do not work for me... like fake cheese. I tried some, hoping, but it just wasn't good. So, I have decided that I just don't eat cheese - real or fake.

How has my body reacted to all of this? Well, I do not feel tired, my energy is starting to get pretty darn good and I have lost weight. I am not a weigher, I have to go by how my clothes fit. And jeans that I used to have to suck in to zip up now zip up easily... and this is only after one week!!! My back pain is about the same, which is what I am hoping to alleviate with this experiment, but I am not at all deterred... these things take time, right?

And the last thing I will talk about in this post is how my dear ol' hubby is dealing with all of this. It really never occurred to me that this would cause more than a hiccup in our relationship, but apparently, I was wrong. Bo and I love to eat and we have some places that we love to frequent - a few of them where the staff know us by first name. Because of my modifications, this is going to have to change. This didn't sit well with my husband. If I could do it all over again, I would sit down with him and have a more in depth conversation about this before doing it. regardless of how the conversation went, I cannot imagine it would have changed my mind, but it would have given him the opportunity to be part of my decision and to voice his concerns.

All in all, I am very happy I have decided to do this and am anxious to see where the journey will take me.

Ciao.

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