Friday, January 21, 2011
I actually have about 4 shelves of cookbooks, counting the books above. But with a few exceptions these are the ones I use time and time again. They have so many dog eared pages, sticky notes and bookmarks in them that it's laughable. I love them. If the house was on fire I would be very upset to leave them behind. But obviously I would since the kids and the husband and the cat come first...ahem.
So without further ado, from left to right:
~Ripe from around here by Jae Steele
~Get it Ripe by Jae Steele
By far my favourite vegan cookbooks!! I use both of these all the time. There has not been a recipe that I've tried that I didn't like. And she has tons of info at the beginning of both books.
~Vegan Cupcakes take over the World (read our previous post and you'll see why it's here!)
~Thirteen Moons by Louise Racine. From their Ontario Wellness Retreat for Women. Again every recipe I've tried is a keeper. It's organized by seasons, which I like. My pumpkin scones are from this cookbook :)
~Vegan Brunch by Isa Chandra Moskowitz. Need I say more?!
~The Family Dinner by Laurie David. Not specifically vegan, although there is a meatless Monday chapter. Many of the other recipes are adaptable and it is an altogether beautiful book that will inspire you to make dinner an event!
~Babycakes Cookbook by Erin McKenna. Vegan, Gluten-free, some are also sugar free. Good stuff.
~The Kripalu Cookbook by Atma JoAnn Levitt. Aaah Kripalu, how do I love thee..... One of my dreams is to go to the center on a retreat. Someday! In the meantime I use this classic cookbook alot! More vegetarian than vegan, it's still worth having. The black forest cake is to die for! And the miso cauliflower..yum!
~Moosewood Restaurant Celebrates by The Moosewood Collective. Arranged by season and holidays this book is wonderful. Another of my dreams is to go to Ithica, NY for the weekend and eat all my meals at the Moosewood. I've been using their cookbooks for years.
~Simple Suppers by Moosewood Restaurant. Nothing more to add here.
~The Kind Diet by Alicia Silverstone. More macrobiotic than I want to be this is still a wonderful worthwhile book. Great recipes and awesome info. And I have a girl crush on Alicia :)
~Moosewood Restaurant's Cooking for Health. I bet your getting tired of seeing that name huh?
~Veganomicon by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. A great, never fail, got it all covered cookbook!
~Vegetarian Cookbook by The Green Door Restaurant. This one isn't pictured because my husband was using it at the time that I took the picture. This is my favourite Ottawa veg restaurant. If you have the cookbook you can make your own potatoes and kale! Do you hear me Mel?
So what's on your go to cookbook shelf? What are your favourites? Always looking for fresh inspiration here!
Peace and dream clouds
Thursday, January 20, 2011
Honestly, if you haven't bought this book and you're into vegan baking BUY IT!!!!!! This is the second time I've ever baked vegan, the first time being last summer when I made cupcakes from the Babycakes cookbook. They were good, especially considering that they were gluten and sugar free, which these, unfortunately are not. However, they're REALLY good and since its a class party I made an exception.
I kept my lunch heavy on the raw side. Tofu and veggies in rice paper wraps with a spicy dip, salad and leftover steamed greens.
I was surprisingly still hungry so I had some dessert. Apple slices and a couple of medjool dates (soooo good!) with a cup of peach ginger green tea. The tea was thankfully really warming because baby it was cold outside!
Dinner consisted of Costa Rican black bean soup. Nice and easy with no added fat in the soup. I diced some avocado and sprinkled it on top for added colour. We had our usual soup day side dishes with it, crudites, hummus, veg dip and flax/sesame crackers.
So all was well. Until I woke up during the night with ridiculous pain in my sides and lower back. I managed to get back to sleep but felt awful in the morning. I had a fever and kept dozing off. And the pain kept getting progressively worse. I finally took myself off to the walk in medical clinic. Result: kidney infection. Therefore, antibiotics. Ugh!
I'll up my dose of Vitamin C and take some probiotics. Hopefully that will help my body deal with the darn antibiotics. I'm sure I'll feel better soon!
I the meantime I'll keep on
and be back with more soon!
Love, peace and green juice
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
These portobello mushrooms are what Maddie and I had in our fajitas instead of steak. As good as they were I found it tough smelling the grilled beef. I had to keep reminding myself how horrible life was for those poor animals and how BAD eating their flesh is for me. I made sure to pile the veggies on my fajita and had two servings of salad.
Now for the main point of this post. I have to go for a spinal tap on Monday. I've been told that I may be laid up with a splitting headache for a couple of days. If this occurs I'll literally have to be flat on my back :)
I'm looking for ideas for vegan, GF meals that can be made ahead or are easy enough to put together. Any and all ideas are greatly appreciated!
Love and peace signs
Sunday, January 16, 2011
Did I feel better after? Honestly no. The thing I felt was nothing...numb. Just to make sure that numb feeling didn't run away anytime soon I took an ativan.
I could have done a long yoga session, walked in the swirling snow, painted something angry, had a hot epsom salt bath, got my friend to do some reiki on me. But I didn't.
Really and truly I have to let it go. Because if I don't then I'll really be in big trouble.
So this morning when I woke up, I meditated. After hot water and lemon, I had a green tea then made a huge bunch of green juice. I turned up the volume by adding broccoli stems and parsley to my usual mix.
The afternoon was spent painting a new picture. The opposite of my previous painting titled "Oppression".
I made a heavy-on-the-veggies dinner. Total atonement for my sins of yesterday. Raw carrot and beet salad, steamed purple cabbage, roasted squash and arame seaweed, fried marinated tofu and udon noodles with red and green pepper, muchrooms, broccoli, baby bok choy, crunchy sprouts topped with Gomasio. Delish!
Time to go and kick back folks...here's hoping that we all have the sweetest of sweet dreams!
Thursday, January 13, 2011
I had a strange experience when I was meditating this morning. I've been extremely disciplined about hitting the pillow first thing every morning and I've managed to actually increase my time from 10 minutes to 15. I'm much less antsy and find that my mind is wandering less. However, this morning as I was settling into the meditation I felt this overwhelming wave of grief. It was the oddest thing. I have never before experienced anything like it before. At the same time as the tears started pouring down my cheeks I had a sensation of sitting outside of myself watching this display with compassion. I found myself wondering why I was feeling these emotions. Why was I so overwhelmed with grief? As I watched myself silently cry, it came to me that I was grieving for the self that I could have become.
People say that it's never too late. Actually that's not true. Sometimes it is too late. I'm 43 years old. For me to become a doctor at this point and work with Doctors without Borders is not possible. All the time I wasted! The wrong choices I made. Of course I know there are other things that I can do that are somewhat similar and could provide a sense of accomplishment but it's not the same is it?
The amazing thing is that I came out of the meditation with a sense of quiet acceptance. I felt okay with the choices I had made and the paths I had chosen. Consciously or not. I wasn't angry or sad. I wiped the tears from my face and got on with my day with adetermination that fromthis day forward I would be sure to actively CHOOSE, as much as possible, to fulfill my dreams and goals. To finally become the person I am meant to be.
The past two days have been good. I am still extremely tired and needing to nap. I figure it's the lack of caffeine and sugar. I don't know how long it's going to last but hopefully it ends soon. It's been really cold out so I've been doing yoga for my exercise. Not exactly shaking my ass, more like slowly moving it :)
But at least it's moving! I'm getting better with the neti pot but more about that at a later date. The green juices and smoothies are going strong and I am keeping to the food aspects of the cleanse. Yesterday I made a delicious vegan split pea soup for dinner.
Usually on soup night (wednesday's) I make homemade artisan bread with all purpose wheat flour to go with our soup. Obviously that's not possible at the moment!
So instead of bread I served carrots, broccoli and sugar snap peas with a tofu dill dip. As well, we had some hummus and great flax-sesame crackers. It did the trick everyone was nicely full after.
Tonight I made a ratatouille casserole with a vegan parmesan topping. I filled about a third of my plate with it. It was delicious! The other 2/3 of the plate was filled with lightly steamed swiss chard and beet greens and a raw carrot and beet salad that had a lemon vinaigrette and a sprinkle of gomasio. Again it was more than filling. I'm enjoying expanding my food repertoire even more!
So as tired as I am, I'm going to say adieu :)
Sleep well everyone!
Tuesday, January 11, 2011
Later in the morning we walked to the library. Steve carried my books for me...so sweet, like high school in a fifties movie :) Our walk lasted about 40 minutes, which is a nice length of time. My lunch was made up of last night's dinner with the exception of the potatoes and the addition of flax crackers. I really piled on the salad!
The afternoon was spent listening to my new "Chant" cd. It's excellent if your into that kind of thing. I find it hugely inspiring! I hear the chanting start and immediately want to pick up a pencil or paintbrush. This afternoon I did a picture including my goals for 2011. IT's at the start of this blog post. Much more inspiring than a plain old list!
I did a dry brush this afternoon and then took a hot epsom salt and lavender essential oil bath. Such a treat in the middle of the day :)
Taco Tuesday for dinner today :) I made a black bean base and cooked up some ground beef on the side for the carnivores. Maddie and I had some grated rice cheddar "cheese" which was actually palatable and tofutti "sour cream". I made a cucumber salsa and guacamole as well. The recipe for the tacos came from the book "Family Dinner" which is a great cookbook and lifestyle/idea book. Even though it's not specifically vegetarian there is a meatless Monday chapter and many of the other recipes can be adapted. We lit the candles and had a great dinner. I kept it to one taco and had two helpings of salad. I also piled the tomatoes and lettuce and other veggies on the taco.
As I write this I'm drinking a cup of "easy tea" which is good for digestion (hand blended), the kids are watching a movie and Steve is building a fire in the living room. I've taken my supplements and medication and despite my little "discomforts", I feel good!
Monday, January 10, 2011
And I made banana sorbet.
Anyway homework is piling up (summatives. fml.) and I should really be working on that instead of blogging so yeah. I would write more, but I won't.
Sunday, January 9, 2011
You'll be saying yes to:
-lots of fresh vegetables (some cooked, most raw)
-low glycemic fruit
-legumes, nuts, seeds
-whole grains (gluten free)
-eating 60/40 or 80/20 raw (or lightly steamed/sauteed) to cooked ratio
-lots of water
-green, white and herbal teas
-agave and stevia in small amounts
-exercise. In whatever form you like, as long as it gets your heart rate up a bit and you get 35 minutes of it a day, 5 days a week.
-meditation/prayer. Working up to 15 minutes a day
-dry skin brushing
-certain supplements, if you choose.
You'll be saying no to:
-eggs, dairy and meat of any kind (yes this includes fish too)
-processed foods, refined carbs
-artificial sweeteners, flavourings and chemicals
-sitting on your behind day after day letting life pass you by
-looking and feeling older than your years
My intentions for 2012 are simple
1. Be well
2. Find my center
3. Say yes
I hope some of you choose to join me on the journey!
With love and gratitude
Friday, January 7, 2011
Last summer when my illness really started to take it's toll and I had to go off work on med leave it was tough. Especially because the first lung lesion was found at that time. Can you say stress? But within ten days I had myself turned around, quit smoking cold turkey and discovered Kris Carr's Crazy Sexy Cancer crusade. Kris is wonderful and has tons of info in her DVD documentary and books. But at the time she didn't have any kind of full on nutrition related info out there so when I decided to do a cleanse I found Kathy Freston and used her as my guru.
And it was amazing. Transformative. I felt somewhat better and began to feel a measure of peace. Then the cleanse ended and after a time life, financial and family stress, illness and the discovery of another lung lesion intervened in a major way and I slipped off the path...right into the gutter. If there are any of you reading this who have been following me since the beginning you've seen me disappear into the nether world.
But around the time of the Winter Solstice (Dec. 21) I started to feel a small spark of my old self. My desire for change and my taste for the journey re-emerged. Then (just in time) Kris Carr's new book came out. Just what I needed to guide me and give me a good start.
My pre-cleanse week is almost up and I'm feeling really positive. Once again Maddie has decided to join me. :)
Monday we begin!
This morning I headed for the meditation cushion first thing and it started my day off just right. My timer is broken but I sat on the cushion and took a deep breath anyway. Funnily enough I opened my eyes at just the right time! (Ten minutes in and time to wake up my son)
This is my altar/meditation area. On the wall is the poster that my sister in law gave me for christmas. I'm going to have to get a frame for it eventually but I couldn't wait for that to happen before I got it up there. The framed 90 picture I found in a thrift store. It is made with flower petals and signed by a group of nuns. There is a postcard from an Irish cemetary, a couple of birthday cards that are special and a funeral card from my aunt Elaine who passed away from lung cancer in 2009. There's also a small framed print from Charleston leaning against the wall (most beautiful city I've been to-so far) I have a dream catcher hanging up there and a tag from France, a "green" tag...all funny little things that mean something to me :)
Must fly now...much peace, love and happiness to everyone!
Thursday, January 6, 2011
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
Steve and I went for a great walk. An hour and fifteen minutes in gently falling snow. The weather was perfect. Not too cold and no wind. On the way back home we stopped at his parents and had a cup of tea and a nice visit.
I made two pasta sauces for dinner; one vegan and one with ground beef. Lit candles at dinner and used the nice dishes. Steve chopped all the vegetables for the sauces and we did the dishes together. Nothing to complain about right?
Well then, SOMEONE brought out a box of cookies we had received at Christmas. They were calling my name. Actually, it was more of a SCREAM than a call!! There was no way I could resist.
President's Choice Belgian chocolate cookies.
No they aren't homemade but for the longest time they were my favourite cookie, bar none! So I succumbed...I promised myself that I would be brutally honest here about how I'm doing.
Public confession over :)
The cookies called my name and I answered. I ate 5...So before I eat more, I'm grabbing my cup of herbal tea and getting outta here!
Keep on keeping on