Veganism Follow-Up, Blogger Meetup, Whole Foods Tour, Patient Shopper, Posting Pics

How’s your day been going?  I had another Tuesday Blogger Meetup today with the amazing Alyson of Nourished FitnessClick Here in case you missed my Previous Tuesday Blogger Meetups.

Before I get to the details of our meetup today, I want to thank everyone who wrote in with so much passion and thoughtfulness behind your comments regarding my Questions about Veganism from Yesterday’s Post.   Yesterday I discussed my transformation and light bulb moment that went off after seeing animals at a petting zoo this weekend.  A mental shift occurred for me from being Vegan largely for Health Reasons (See This Post) to also becoming a Vegan for Compassion.  I am now firmly in the camp of both, whereas previously I used to consider myself much more entrenched in the former. 

First, thank you everyone for playing nice because there were no nasty comments.  Thank you everyone for keeping it classy and drama-free!  The comments were amazing to read about each of your paths, how you reconcile what you eat, the vegetarian vs. vegan issue, some of you eat meat and explained how and why you are on that path
Here are a few comments (slightly edited for length) that stood out for me as I realize you don’t have the time to read all the comments:

Three Meat Eater Perspectives

Caronae of Runner Write Therapy Life: ultimately, I still do eat meat (seafood, white meat, and red meat) and that does make some sort of statement, I suppose. It is true that an animal died in the process, and I’m not one of those crazies who says that animals were put on earth for humans to eat, but I do think our systems evolved to eat meat (in terms of our evolution). I think that, for example, free range/grass-fed/organic cows or chickens who have lived free and happy lives, are ultimately okay to eat. I purchase a lot of wild fish and local meat…My conclusion on the ethical front is that meat in moderation is okay: it is naturally human.

Sophia of Burp and Slurp:  Okay. Meat. That’s such a sensitive issue. First of all, as a blogger within the “healthy living” realm, I do feel sometimes that disapproval. I know many vegan bloggers claim that they don’t judge…but it’s still a negative feeling I get that I am not being ethical, etc…but I truly believe that animals are meant to be consumed, and it’s all part of the natural food chain. I believe that God created animals for human benefit. I suppose the key difference is that you may view animals as an equal level as humans, but I don’t view it that way…I believe that God created the whole universe with humans in mind. What really disgusts me is the way some vegans, vegetarians act so badly toward their fellow human beings, all for the sake of treating animals “right”. It’s just so contradictory to me. I’ve seen a lot of PETA movements that seriously sickens me. 

Mimi of Damn the Freshman 15: I do have a big belief in being conscious of your food. I think America (and much of the world) has a huge lack of this. Who thinks about the cow when biting into a hamburger? When you eat meat, you should be aware that an animal died to feed you. It doesn’t have to be soul-searching gratitude or anything, but facts are facts. In a “perfect world,” I think the most ethical form of meat consumption is the hunter who tracks down a buck, shoots it, and cooks it for his or her family. But how many are hunters? The conditions of slaughterhouses appall me. There are some grass-fed beef farms that treat the animals super well, but most “organic” beef farms are just hormone-free equivalents of normal slaughterhouses.

Vegetarian & Vegan Perspectives

Anna of NewlyWedNewlyVeg: As for the eating meat issue, I do know that there are more ethical ways and less ethical ways to kill animals…but to me, the bottom line is that you’re still killing an animal for your own pleasure. Because we don’t “need” to eat meat in our culture for survival, it seems selfish and wrong of me to take the life of another living creature just for my own personal satisfaction.

Natasha The Voracious Vegan: I am not shy about saying that I DO judge people who eat meat. Yep, I used to do it, and that sucked and I was an awful person for doing it. I didn’t need to do it to survive, so what excuse other than being selfish do I have for causing the death of another animal? I would judge someone who took a dog and tortured it and killed it for fun, so why shouldn’t I judge someone who pays someone else to torture and kill a chicken so they can eat its dead body? Same thing.  If I didn’t think being vegan was BETTER than not being vegan, I wouldn’t do it. So, obviously there is a judgment there. I used to eat meat and a part of me is always sad and upset that I did. But, you learn better you do better. And hopefully everyone will learn better and do better, just like I did.

Sarah of Gluten Free Tries Vegan: I also believed that it was ok to eat animals, as long as they were grass-fed and reared in a humane way as in the Bible God said that he blessed us with animals to eat. But, in the Bible God also speaks of people thriving on vegetables. Plus, a lot has changed since biblical times. Animals are abused and used to feed us, which I think is appalling. So now my conscience and my body will not allow me to eat meat.

Mama Pea of Peas and Thank You: As for your vegan question, it started out as a health choice for me and turned into an ethical one. I’m somewhere in between right now. I think of how hard meat is to digest and how mucous forming dairy is and I just want to steer clear for my body’s sake. But then I also think of how ready I was to give up nursing at the end of a year and the fact that these poor cows are forced to nurse their whole lives, without even having their babies to make up for it. I also am reminded that every animal that someone eats was running for its’ life. It breaks my heart.   From a logic standpoint, it makes a LOT more sense to me to eat meat than it does dairy. Obviously if I didn’t have the luxury, knowledge, privilege of eating a meat free diet, I would, as so many generations of humans have. But why I would ever want to eat/drink milk from an animal is beyond me. That milk was made for their babies, not for me. 

I could go on and on…
The comments were fantastic and so well-articulated and it is posts like that one which reinforce why I blog and that I am so grateful for my readers and friends!  If you want to be entertained by your fellow peers in the ‘sphere, check out the comments.  Thank you guys for being such awesome readers and friends and for doing it with respect to me, my blog, and all the other readers who may choose differently than you do.  Namaste!

Moving Onto the Blogger Meetup Details!
On our last meetup, Alyson took a picture of Skylar and me that I really love so she’s an instant BFF when she can take a great pic of me and my squirmy sidekick and make us both look good.  Something about this pic I that I like enough that it became my screensaver.

But the real reason Alyson skyrockets to BFF status is that she tried these coffees in Maple Vanilla and Decaf Cinnamon Vanilla Nut, and wasn’t in love with them.  So she made a very gracious and charitable donation of them to me!  I asked her a half dozen times if she was sure, and told her to return them, as I am not to proud to return things I don’t like, but she said no, keep them.  So, I did!  Thanks, Alyson!!! 

And I’ll Give you My Thoughts on them after I brew them up in the next few days.  If you missed Smores Coffee that I’ve mentioned before…

 

Or the Fudge Brownie Coffee..

…Or Brownies that could inspire the Fudge Brownie Coffee
My Raw Vegan Chocolate Brownies

 Raw Vegan Chocolate Brownies-Slighly Different Recipe than 1st Link

Or this Vegan Fudge-10 Minute No-Bake Recipe that is begging to be washed down with coffee…

Suffice to say, lately I’ve been lovin’ the flavored Coffees and chocolate, but that’s usual! So Alyson‘s Coffee Surprise was tooo kind!!!!  Thanks, Sweets!

On our meetup today, we talked about everyone in the sphere!   kidding!

Atually, we talked about  My Goal of likely Embarking upon a Fitness Competition and doing Bikini Shows

Alyson’s done Fitness Shows before so I picked her brain about every last detail and it was great fun.  For me at least although I’m sure she felt a bit like a Question & Answer Booth! 

We had an awesome time together and it’s so serendipitous that she and I both live in Phoenix and the Universe and The Blogosphere aligned and helped facilitate our meeting and becoming friends at the perfect time as I’m considering Fitness Competitions as my a Goal!

I drank iced coffee with So Delicious Vanilla Coconut Creamer.   I love a good overpriced WF’s coffee drink because at least I can flavor it vegan-style!

 Skylar was a squirmy worm today but all things considered, and she just turned 3 a month ago…she’s very good and patient on all my blogger meetups. 

Do I sense a Food blogger in the making?

No, but I am a total food blogger because I carry my camera to the grocery store.  I know, ridic.
I browsed around and saw some cute $50 a piece tshirts.  But they were organic, of course.

And Skylar saw some cute toys.  For all non-parents, when you become a parent and want to buy non-BPA, non-junky toys, and want to buy wooden toys or organic cotton stuffed toys, seriously, each and every little toy is $20 bucks.  Or much more.  $20 rattles and $38 dollar wooden cars.  I am not kidding.  It was an eye opener for me.

I Took a Gander at the Wall of Protein

Vega & Manitoba Harvest Hemp

 Biotherm

Jay Robb but only Egg & Whey, no Brown Rice

I order all my protein, Sun Warrior Brown Rice in Chocolate is my #1 Protein and **I get it from iHerb.com and if you use my code: AVE630 you can save $5 off your First Order!**

And then I found The Wall of Chocolate: Cocoa & Carob Powder

The Nut Butter Wall

The Agave Wall

The Mustard Wall.  Finally a wall I could afford.

I picked up some Westbrae No Salt Added Mustard, perfect for a sodium-sensitive girl like me

After walking through WF’s, I needed to go grocery shopping.  I treat WF’s like a Museum:  Lovely, but don’t touch it and you can’t buy it.

I needed to go to the local Albertson’s which is much more budget friendly.  So Skylar and I did a full grocery shop, and it was 90F degrees today according to my car thermometer, and came home and cut up a pineapple.

Refreshing!

And opened up the mail to find a couple goodies…
This Kashi Bar

I went to This Site and got it free.  You don’t have to be a blogger to enter.  Unfortunately I won’t be eating it because it’s full of gluten and dairy, which doesn’t work for me.  Scott’s lunch bag just got one dark chocolate coconut bar heavier.

I ordered a new pair of Insoles by Sof Sole that Katie of  Lil Veggie Patch had mentioned.  She suffers from plantar fascitis as I do.  Mine ebbs and flows over the years, sometimes it doesn’t bother me for 6 months and then other times, it feels like my arch is going to explode and very super painful and whether I rest, remain active, use ice, heat, massage, roll tennis balls, you name it, I’ve tried it.  Including all kinds of insoles, but I have never tried these

The coolest thing ever is that you heat them in the over to 225F for 2 minutes and then mold them to your feet!

I can’t wait to bake them up!  I wonder if I could keep them raw and bake them in a 115F dehydrator?   Kidding!  

I’ll Keep You Posted how they work for me!  I purchased them here in case you’re curious.


Green Food: Romaine, Sugar Snap Peas, Aparagus, Cukes, Brussels, Tomatoes, Cauli

Dressed with Homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing and Mustard.  Can’t wait to test my new mustard out! 

Lately, Ive been really enjoying my mustard.  Remember the mustard all over crackers?  I have repeated that.  Many times.

And Also Had to Get My Coconut Oil Popcorn Groove On!  
If you missed my Microwave Popcorn Trick for a Super Fast, Easy, Healthy, No-Junk Added, way to Make Popcorn

….Click Here

And Check This Post for the Health Benefits of Maca!

Sawdust Maca Powder

Coconut Oil

 Good Fat much lately?

 Everything except the kitchen sink goes into or onto my Coconut Oil Popcorn Blend  

Click Here to Check out the Rest of The Items.  Cocoa Bean Extract anyone?

Yoga Today is Tittibhasana (Firefly Pose)  Fly away like a firefly!

Tip of the Day: My French Press and Tazo Tea Gift Set Give Away!!!!!

Have You Entered Yet? 
Yes, I know I have Two Commenting Systems Going so if you’ve entered, I’ve got it and am keeping track of all the entries.
 
You can Press Tea, also.  Not just coffee!
Thanks, Tazo
Click Here to Get Your Entries In!!!!!!

Questions
1. Last week I had errand mania type days and this week is no different and was wondering, When you go shopping, do you go with a purpose or are you a “just looking” type?  
Before I had Skylar, I enjoyed browsing, evaluating, reading, deciding, pondering, and just poking around places like Whole Foods discovering new things, or at stores like Forever 21 in search of the “perfect” item, but I have no time for that anymore.  I need to get in, get out, and get on with it!  And I admit, that when people are really pokey and can’t find their credit card and can’t find their coupons and just can’t seem to.get.it. together when they’re pushing their carts, it kinda drives me nuts!  But that’s my yoga, having patience with others when I am out shopping and I try to be more mindful to just take a breath, and if I finish the errand 5 minutes later because of pokey shoppers, then so be it.
Are you an On-A-Mission Shopper or a Just-Browsing and read every label for 2 hours in the store and try on 19 shirts but don’t buy any kind of shopper?  

Also, how many grocery stores are in your weekly line up? 
I’ve got Albertson’s, TJ’s, and WF’s, and online purchases from iHerb.com or Amazon, plus Target.  Too many but it’s more budget conscious to do it that way, plus product or food availability, i.e. I hate TJ’s broccoli but love their bagged greens and salad mixes.



2. Fave Whole Foods item that you can only get there an no where else?
Me = Veganaise.  I know it’s not “exciting” but I need it to make my vegan slaw dressing!
3. I have some photos of myself in a bikini that I was thinking about posting and I am also thinking about creating a Tab on my Blog for my Fitness Progress, because I am 95% certain I am going to do a Fitness Show!  I am really hesitant to post the pictures because of hurtful, hateful, or rude comments I may get.  Either about my body, or my motivations for wanting to compete.  I understand we all have different ideas about what’s “fun” and my choices may not be your choices but as I said yesterday, I have my head screwed on straight with this and the minute it’s not fun, I won’t do it!  
Do you think it would be fun to have a Progress & Pictures Tab?  Do you think I would get rude comments?  Or people who “mean well” and say things that are inappropriate and hurtful?
I have to say one rude comment would probably make me take the whole thing down as I am not here to deal with that kind of hurtfulness so I would just take it down, how many of you had to take down your Formspring.   
Or do you think people could handle it and if you’re not interested and you read my blog for recipes only, or yoga only, then you just don’t click on that tab?

Stay Tuned For Making Use of Foods in Season…

   

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