I am really curious and surprised to see how my ideas and feelings have changed in the last 4 months. I am afraid at times I may seem too evangelistic about eating vegan, and I am trying not to sound preachy in any way, because that is not how I feel.
I do feel like my eyes have been opened to another world. but after 40 plus years of eating meat, I definitely don’t feel superior or whatever other attributes are attributed to vegans. In fact, I’m not completely vegan in any way, I am still seeing where I end up on this path. At this point I eat about 75% vegan I would say.
One thing I find very interesting is how, when we are children, we are told that it is okay to kill and eat animals for food. Most kids see a disconnect in how animals are viewed and treated. I read this tweet today from a fellow parent with a 3 year old daughter:
Me: “Now, this is just a story, see. In the real world, we don’t *kill* people.” Daughter: “Right. Just animals.” Me: “Uh… Right.”
My own daughter begged me for a long time not to eat animals, and I put her off because in my mind she was immature and had not evolved her understanding fully enough to realize that there are shades of gray in loving some animals as pets or in some settings, while eating others. I’ve listed the reasons earlier on why I am not eating meat, and it is much more complex than just love for animals. I will say that Clio started me questioning my way of thinking, even though I was raised as a meat eater. Children definitely shape us as much as we shape them. While in the past, we always allowed Clio to have her own vegetarian option, now our whole family has slowly joined her, including Gavin.
Wherever you are in your thoughts, isn’t it interesting that as children, most of us have to be taught that eating animals is okay?
I actually have kept up with the sketches on and off. I got out of the habit of posting, but have had some people tell me they enjoyed the posts. I do plan to start back up again. I think my birthday would be a good time to start- Wednesday, May 23. This month also marks my 3rd year yogiversary. I’m feeling good about it, but have pretty much plateaued with my practice. I plan to do yoga 4 x/week rather than the current 3. My mom is now an avid yogi. She was telling me today how she could never convince anyone to do it, but she loves it so much. It’s true. I had wanted her to try it for awhile, but she wouldn’t. These things have to come from inside.
Now back to the food. The drawings started to get a little boring because I was always eating the same thing. Green smoothies, apples, etc. Even when we went to Hawaii, it was not that exciting- just more pineapple and coconut juice from the source. And by the way, what’s the big deal about shave ice?
Let me preface this description of Hawaiian food by saying I am not complaining about the trip at all, I would happily go to Hawaii again even if all I had to eat was rice the whole time. However, Hawaii is not especially friendly to vegetarians. Think about a luau. Everything is fish, pork, chicken or beef. I ate fish twice while there simply because there were no vegetarian options. And the weird thing is, I didn’t enjoy the fish. I’m not sure if there was something wrong with it (for $27 there better not have been!) or if my tastes have simply changed. It does make it easier to skip meat when you don’t crave it at all.
So, the newest thing I have been doing, is trying to make delicious vegan food. Not just sticking to rice and bean stuff. I discovered SporkOnline during a Groupon deal or something. It is really informative, and they make cooking great vegan food look pretty easy. You can watch a sample dinner for free on their website. I’m also pretty excited about the recipes on Holy Cow. The spinach mushroom curry was so good.
So many people think they cannot give up cheese, or milk, or whatever. I understand! I lived in France for a year and the cheeses were the best part. But, something changed, and now when I taste vegetables and fruits- they taste so much more amazing. When I do have cheese, it really doesn’t taste that good.
Looking forward to starting the sketches again in a few days, and hope to get some new guest artists to send in their sketches.
More drawings are coming soon! I have faithfully recorderd up to Feb 12. Then, I guess I got really busy with work and Chika leaving. I may have to skip 5 days of this month. I am still eating vegan. Except for a few small bites of cheese cake, and a couple bites of pastries that I pretended to think might not contain eggs or butter.
It has been WAY easier than I thought. My cravings for eggs, butter, cheese, and milk have pretty much gone away. Meat does not sound good. There seems to always be a vegan option available so far.
The bad news is, I didn’t lose a miracle 10 pounds like I thought. Jonathan had the same experience with the new scale. For some reason, it registered a high weight initially, but now seems more accurate. I have no doubt that staying on this plan would help me lose weight gradually though.
I don’t view what I am doing as a diet. It limits some food choices, but I can eat whatever I want from the many options I do have available. I am getting a little worried about the amount of soy I have been eating. I discovered yesterday that hemp milk tastes just fine in a latte, so I will try to keep the soy consumption down a bit. Tofu is just such an easy, tasty option. I made an eggless egg salad with it, and a vegan lasagne where the tofu substituted for ricotta.
After this month, I will probably add in eggs from local chickens. I buy them from a place where the chickens are just hanging out, and I don’t have any problem with treatment. Otherwise, I picture chickens with their beaks cut off, crammed together in filthy conditions. Free Range and Cage free can mean that they just have a small yard, or a door open for 5 minutes a day. You can read about it here. The pictures are not pretty- but sometimes the truth is not pretty.
All my life, I have been trying not to think about where the meat came from- cooking my hamburgers until they are so well done, no blood comes out. Only buying meat with no bones or skin. Avoiding any fish with heads still attached. I finally feel my eating is aligned with my feelings about animals, and it feels really good. Do we really just not want to know how our food is produced?
I recorded everything a bit sporadically last month, but this month I will update every day. Plus, there are less days in this month, so it should be a bit easier, January just went on and on.
This month, I will be eating vegan. Or at least trying my hardest. I don’t eat a lot of meat normally, and have been leaning towards vegetarianism for a long time. I like fish a lot, and cheese, and my lattes, so this is sort of a trial period. I won’t be super strict about it as far as needing to make sure there is no honey in my wheat bread for example. But, I will avoid eating any eggs, dairy, and fish or meat directly.
There are many reasons I will be doing this: environmental, health, weight loss, and animal cruelty in the food industry.
I suggest watching Food, Inc, Fast Food Nation, and Forks over Knives. Check out this brief summary of veganism if you want to learn more. I am not trying to preach to anyone, I just want to lighten my carbon footprint, and maybe even my physical one too.