871. Grateful for Vegan Kids!

I just can’t let these inspirational darlings pass by. I’m not only grateful for them, but especially grateful for supportive family members accepting and encouraging them.

 Peta has announced the winners of their 2013 Cutest Vegan Kid contest, but not only are the winners cute, they bring hope to the future of animals.

 Encouraging kids to follow their heart at a young age can lead only to good.  Instead of stomping down the compassion that we naturally feel for living beings, these kids will be 10 steps ahead of those of use realizing later in life just how precious all life is.

 Please see them for yourself:

http://www.petakids.com/contestCutestVegKid-Winners.asp?utm_campaign=0213%20cutest%20veg%20kids%20winners&utm_source=PETA%20Kids%20Pitch&utm_medium=Media

 As for their next steps – I await with glad expectation.

872. Keeping my fellow human safe.

It doesn’t matter if you love or hate animals, some jobs are just dangerous.  The slaughterhouse, or meat-packing industry, is one of the most dangerous jobs around.

Dangerous to the physical body – nearly one third of employees in the meat-packing industry are injured, or killed.  The industry leaders may tell you injury rates improved lately,  but there are two reasons for that – repetitive use injuries are no longer counted, and injured employees are quite often fired or moved to less-desirable work so they just work through the pain and injury and it goes unreported.

And look at how much food is wasted everyday.  Every piece of hamburger or hot dog that goes straight into the garbage; a cut of steak sitting in the fridge a little too long; questionable chicken salad from the deli – all of it started its journey to the garbage by an underpaid, overworked fellow human being who was literally putting their life at risk. For what?

Dangerous to the mental body –  how many times can you shoot a living being in the head without getting a little disturbed?  How many squeals of pain or fear can you hear? Wouldn’t it seem this kind of job might take it’s toll on you?  It does, on everyone, in one way or another.  You can ponder the possibilities.

And the job just gets more dangerous all the time. Right now they want to increase the chicken conveyor belt more than threefold. Read the article, sign the petition, it’s not only about chickens, its about your fellow man.

http://www.care2.com/causes/more-chickens-may-be-boiled-alive-under-usdas-new-proposed-rule.html

Grateful in helping with others safety.

873. Living Congruently

Sometimes it happens, someone I know pretty well, or even not very well, has somehow never been enlightened to the fact I’m a vegan. The response is a bit satisfying though – no, not the protein response, something else.

 The conversation might sound like this:

“You’re a vegan?” as if surprised because I don’t fit the antiquated stereotype of a vegan.  But then, almost in the same breath, they say “Of course you are.”

 Yes, of course I am. It’s good for me to know that I live my word in the world. Walk the walk. Practice what I preach etc. People can see by my actions that I do have love, compassion, and respect for animals, for all life, and strive to live that way in all areas of my life.

 Then sometimes I come across a person who exclaims “I love animals too!” and I say “Oh, you’re a vegetarian?!” to which I receive a puzzled “No”.

 So then I must assume they mean they love pets, because why would you put your loved ones through extreme torture and torment just to end up on your plate?

 Congruence.

 Live Your Truth.   It’s that easy.

874. Grateful for a Vegan Food Swap!

Yes, so grateful to be part of a vegan food swap! A what?  Cat from http://www.theverdantlife.com/ has organized any willing vegan blogger to swap a package of food with other vegan bloggers.  It’s a great idea, and of course the food is even better.

So when my packaged arrived it felt a bit like my birthday! In fact, I think it was very close to my vegan birthday.

Molly from http://veganprincessinanomnikingdom.wordpress.com/ provided a box full of goodies for me to explore.

The first thing out of the box- a “vegan princess” pin that I LOVE!  Then on to the Vegg (yes!), Chreese package, Buccaneer bar and Trader Joes Cookie Butter.  The only one of these I had tried before was my favorite will-drive-out-of-the-way for Buccaneer bar, so creamy and way better than a 3 Musketeers!  The cookie butter is delicious – a little bit almond butter with gingerbread cinnamon cookies mashed in.  Hard to describe but great straight out of the jar!   The chreese made a great mac and cheese, and the Vegg- well I’ve been saving it for company, so still anxiously waiting that one.

Image

Thank you Molly!  And looking forward to another month to try new foods.

If you’d like to participate in the coming months please sign up!  http://www.theverdantlife.com/p/vegan-food-swap.html

875. Grateful for the Thoughts of a Chicken

Surrounded by animal lovers in an animal communication workshop (aka – pet psychic), I thought the students would know all animals share thoughts and feelings like their beloved horses and dogs.  After a cow being referred to as a ‘big mound of flesh” I discovered I was wrong, and have work to do.

Limited in my time with these specific people, I brought in a photo of my chicken to  be “read” by a participant.  What a joy she was!  She gave a lot of insight to the group in her thoughts and even in being a “revenge pooper”, and when I referred to her as a ‘good chicken’ they commented they’d never heard THAT before.

I know now I have work to do globally, to let the world know what cows, pigs and overlooked animals that are assumed to lack thoughts or feelings.

Thank you Cookie, you are a good chicken despite the poop issue!

876. I’m Grateful the animals know they can trust me.

 

My life is taking a turn with a new purpose, to rescue and serve animals and help end their needles suffering.  As I begin my studies of animal communication, I am glad all animals will know they have nothing to fear of me. My hope is they will trust me easier and sooner, so I can begin the healing process for them and for all animals.

I look forward to the unfolding of events brought on by practicing reiki , communicating with them and serving all animal-kind globally as needed.

877. Grateful to be Minus the Mucus

I contracted a small head cold the other day, at least that’s what I thought I had.  I’m fortunate to have a chiropractor that’s not a back-cracker but holistic healer.  When I asked if he’d work on my cold I was just developing he instead tested me for allergens.  Most people don’t really  have viral colds, they told me, but allergic reactions.  Very quickly they found I was having a reaction to milk.

Milk?  But I’m a vegan!

I did knowingly, though truly accidentally, have dairy that week when I poured my salad dressing and discovered it had milk in it.  I decided to go ahead and use it since I’d already contaminated my food with it.  That and I suspect a rice-milk latte I had was not rice-milk after all.

You’ve undoubtedly heard that milk causes mucus and phlegm.  I can’t find any conclusive scientific evidence of this, but casein – the main protein in milk- is used for wood glue and probably holds your beer bottle label on.  A little sticky wouldn’t you say?  Draw your own conclusion.

Back to me – so I’d not had dairy in a long time and had rid my body of all the excess mucus, so much so that having it set off a viral-like cold reaction.  Within days my head was clear again.  A little  unlike the 2 week  run of the average cold, yes?

I am grateful my body can breathe easy being clear of the mucus and phlegm built up in defense of eating diary.

878. Minimizing My Water Impact on the World

On a rainy day in Seattle it’s hard to imagine there is any kind of water crisis anywhere. Not so far away in California or Nevada the residents might have a small feel of it.  But it gets much worse than that.

While over 70% of the earth is water, only 1% of it might be fit for human consumption.  Sure, there are treatments for some of this water  but they aren’t cheap or readily available to those most affected by the water crisis.  Bad water kills more than 3.5 million people annually – that’s roughly the population of the USA !  Imagine the entire US population being wiped out every year.

How does being vegan help?  It takes approximately 8 times as much water to grow feed and water cattle for just 1 (ONE) hamburger than for 1 veggie burger.  That amounts to 3000 gallons clean water for just ONE MEAL!    Imagine eating vegan once a week – what a difference that makes over the year, or 3 meals a day – 3.27 million gallons of water saved per year.

Yes, I’m grateful to be minimizing my impact, and so are the children who suffer the most from bad water.

Find out more: http://www.waterfootprint.org/?page=files/home

879. Discovering New Forms of Lasagna

In my previous mind, the first requirement of lasagna was lots of stretchy cheese, 3 layers thick.  When I made the vegan commitment I decided I would never even try to duplicate lasagna, especially after trying many vegan cheeses.

I know, some of those cheeses are supposed to be so wonderful –  tasty and even melty!  But not for me – nope, I don’t think so. I know plenty of people that like them, I just haven’t developed a liking to them.  And so I’ve been happy to not have cheese, for there is a lot of great food to eat without cheese and I really don’t miss it.  But this isn’t about cheese, it’s about lasagna.

A walk into Real Food Daily in West Hollywood changed my lasagnaless mind.  I was hesitant, very hesitant, but it was the special of the month and the server said it was very popular. Why not?

To my delight, great lasagna does NOT require cheese!  Sure, there was some kind of soy “cheese” product they make that was a little like ricotta, but that was the only cheese resemblance.  I found layers of carrots, mushrooms, pasta, and other miscellaneous vegetables spilling onto my plate bite after bite.  It was all delicious and so worth the risk!

And so I thank you, veganism, for again opening my mind to try new, delicious foods and discover not all meals need to come from the same cookie cutter.

Lasagna at Real Food Daily

 

880. Learning to Appreciate Dark Chocolate S'mores

 

Some of these posts might give the impression that I didn’t explore or try much before going vegan, which really isn’t true.  But in some parts of my life  there just wasn’t the inspiration to do anything different.

S’mores was one those “no need to change” areas for me.  I wasn’t a big fan of dark chocolate before, so why change?

Now, however, going camping with my Dandies, non-honey graham crackers and dark chocolate bars yields a mouthwatering treat every night.  The Dandies marshmallow melts  just enough to inject a burst of sweet lovely gooeyness right into the bittersweet chocolate. 

It really is quite good!  And now I know, dark chocolate is good too 🙂

Dark Chocolate S'mores

Dark Chocolate S'mores