Sunday, March 13, 2011

30 Day Vegan Check In: Week 1

Oh my! What a week this has been. Full of cooking and delicious food.  What I have really taken away from this, however, is a renewed mindfulness about what I am eating and how my body feels.  Heather, who is facilitating this workshop posed a list of questions about how we feel so here goes!
Energy and Vitality:  The first three days were a bit rough.  I was low on energy and woke up with a headache on Tuesday and Wednesday.  Thursday was my big turnaround, though and I woke up feeling great! Even though I was tired early in the week, I felt good inside, like my body knew this was a good thing to do.
Chewing and Digestion:  This might be a little too much information but the switch to a plant-based whole grain diet was pretty ummmm....cleansing. I also felt pretty bloated by evening most of the week.  I think my body is slowly adjusting, though and I feel a little better every day.
Cravings:  I've been craving sweets which is pretty normal for me.  I've been pretty satisfied with the carrot ginger cookies and a little dark chocolate. I had a couple of non-vegan cookies that my co-worker made as well. But only two which is victory for me!
Hair and Skin: My skin looks amazing! It's much less congested and so soft! My hair doesn't really feel any different but...I'm in week 5 of 7 weeks between cuts. 
Body Shape:  Definitely much less puffy. I can tell the difference in my wrists and fingers as well as my abdomen.  Pretty much all of me just looks leaner. I've lost about 2 lbs this week without stressing myself out or feeling deprived.
Posture and Breathing:  This course just happens to run in conjunction with my yoga course so I'm extremely aware of remembering to breathe.  It's always a work in progress for me, though.
Mood and Emotions: The first three days, I was pretty cranky but more mindful of it than I usually am.  Today I'm calm and handling stressful situations much better than I usually would.
Relating to others:  I am really aware of how short I've been with my kids lately.  I'm 'hearing' myself more.  I'm still working on this and counting my victories!  This is an area where remembering to breathe really helps me. 
Most nourishing food:  Chili with black beans and quinoa for two reasons.  It was the first recipe from this program that I cooked for myself then sat down, ate it, and was mindful of every bite.  It made such a huge amount that I was able to share with a friend and nourish her on a night that she worked late. 
Special person I appreciate and why:  My mom, who my kids and I live with, and is supporting me 100%
Biggest Challenge:  My biggest thing with my kids is to not label foods as 'good' or 'bad'.  So my biggest challenge is explaining why I'm eating the way I'm eating without making them feel like what they're eating is wrong.
Greatest Accomplishment:  Going out to eat twice and staying vegan!!
Most fun I had:  Making the carrot cookies with my daughter!
I got clear that I really want to:  Take care of myself.  I also want to continue to limit animal products and be mindful of what I'm eating. 
Other thoughts:  I had gotten so lazy with my eating! I wasn't planning and I was eating a ton of junk and fast food. It feels amazing to be mindful again of what I'm putting in my body and listening to what my body needs. 
Next week I plan to:  -Start my day with hot water and lemon
                             -Do yoga at least twice in addition to my weekly class
                                    -Try 3 new recipes

Sunday, March 6, 2011

30 Day Vegan Day 0

Today is my set up day for my 30 Day Vegan Whole Foods Cleanse.  I made my trip to Whole Foods to stock up on fresh fruit and veggies, dried beans, and soy milk and yogurt.  My pantry is set up and labeled and ready to go. I'm ready to do this!

Two of the books that I love and plan on using heavily for this month are Feeding the Whole Family by Cynthia Lair and Flying Apron's Gluten Free and Vegan Baking Book by Jennifer Katzinger.  Feeding the Whole Family has great basic techniques on how to cook basic beans and grains as well as recipes that incorporate them that are vegetarian and non-vegetarian.  It also has modifications in the recipes to make them appealing and safe for babies and toddlers.  The Flying Apron cookbook is a great resource as well because all of the recipes are already vegan and gluten-free.  While we aren't a gluten-free household, we live with my Mom who has a gluten sensitivity so we've used several recipes from this book already.  The basic bread recipe makes an amazing pizza crust that my kids love!

Over the course of this month, I plan on sharing my meals (both hits and misses), my challenges and my victories. As Heather says, this isn't about taking away, it's about nourishing our bodies.  I do plan on staying mainly vegan but eating salmon once or twice during the month.  Thanks for joining the ride.

Friday, March 4, 2011


Today I...

Made white beans in the crock pot and learned that they may need a bit more liquid in the future...

Worked on my Discovering Y.O.U. ecourse

Re-arranged and cleaned my back entryway (for the 4th time in 2 1/2 years!)

Went to yoga.

Had a meat-free day in anticipation of 30 day vegan.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011


Wow...I guess life just gets away from all of us sometimes! Holidays, family, art deadlines, work.  All of this derailed me from my blog for a couple of months. 

I have several adventures in my sites for the next couple of months that I'd like to share with everyone!  Discovering Y.O.U. with Traci Bautista, a 30 day vegan workshop with Heather from Beauty that Moves, and Soul Restoration which is starting in April.  I'm also continuing to participate in the Sketchbook Challenge! Whew! Exhausted yet? I am but I'm also exhilarated.  I put a lot of thought into the time each of these things would take and how to structure my time so that they would be beneficial to me and my family. 

My goal is to use my blog to keep me accountable to all of this and to share these experiences.  I hope you'll all follow along with them!