Friday, December 24, 2010

Happy Holidays!

Hope everyone has a very merry time celebrating!

~ Winter is here and it's time to spread the warmth and joy from the inside out ~

Monday, December 20, 2010

My Blender Blues are Over, Baby

A while back I posted about our need for a new blender.  Well, we now own a Vitamix!!  It took us awhile to decide, but after an awesome $4 food processor find at a local thrift store it was hard to pass up.  These fellas are pretty pricey, as I'm sure you know, so this is our birthday and Christmas to each other.  And we are quite happy with it!

First we made Buckwheat Groat Pancakes.  We have missed these since our last blender died.  The original recipe is from this blog.  These are a great thinner, grainy pancake.  

We have had many green smoothies the last couple of weeks!  It's wonderful!  Adam was inspired by this blog for our first one.  For those who have been making these for years, perhaps it seems silly to look for a recipe.  But this is new territory for us.  Honestly I love starting off the day with one, it feels great.  But I do like to have something to munch on, too.  Generally I will eat a piece of toast or something before downing the thick, ooey greenness that are our smoothies. 
Has anyone seen Troll 2?

Every time I see food this green, I can't help but think of it. 
Nilbog brew, baby!  Drink up!

Friday, December 17, 2010

Finding Inspiration, Homemade Cereal and Muffins

Squirrel visitor outside my window
Last Sunday we woke up to a light covering of snow.  Perfect for a special day.  That afternoon my neices and nephews (all but the youngest, who just turned one :) came over to make Christmas ornaments.  I dug out a variety of craft supplies, made some muffins (see recipe below), and listened to the sounds of John Dowland.  It was a festive atmosphere and thanks to Adam's help, everything was ready to go when they arrived.

I don't have any pictures, but there were some great ornaments I wish I could have captured. Popular materials of the day were felt, paper and bottle caps.  I won't go into details in case any are used for gifts for sisters who may read this blog.  Thanks to Tori, Madi, Sean and David for such a wonderful afternoon!

Any writers reading?  Well, I have recently decided on a little challenge to keep the creative juices flowing.  For the next month I will write at least 50 words per day.  50 words isn't much at all, so it should be very doable ;)  The idea is to set aside time each day to write a few thoughts, a poem, journal, or whatever wordplay comes to mind.  If you are a writer who is not writing, maybe you should consider creating a challenge for yourself.  Or perhaps there is something else that you dream about, but make little time to do.  Just remember to make the challenge something that is easily doable, so that it is not a matter of stress, but just a chance to allow your creativity to flow.  If you decide to do anything like this, I would love to hear about it!

Besides wonderful blueberry and chocolate chip muffins, Mom always made orange muffins.  Not only are they flavored with orange juice, but they are slightly crunchy from grape nuts.  Since we didn't have any berries in the freezer, these seemed like the perfect choice on Sunday.  It also gave me the perfect opportunity to make homemade grape nuts. That is, until I remembered that I didn't have any orange juice.  By the time that occured to me, I had already made the grape nuts and prepared the dry ingredients.  So what did I actually make that day?  Hearty Cereal Muffins with raisins.

Hearty Cereal Muffins with Raisins
(adapted from Mom's Orange Muffin recipe)

Dry ingredients: 
2 c. flour (I used spelt) 
1/3 c. coconut crystals (or other sweetener)
1 t. baking soda
1/2 t. salt
1 c. grape nuts (see recipe below)

Liquid ingredients: 
2 T. flax mixed with 6 Tbs. water
1 c. soymilk 
1 T. orange peel
1/2 T. cinnamon
1/3 c. coconut oil

2 handfuls of raisins 

* Mix all dry ingredients, except raisins, in a large bowl. 
* Mix all liquid ingredients in a medium bowl.
* Add the liquid ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix until moist.   
* Gently mix in the raisins.
* Bake in a greased muffin tin for 20-25 min. at 400 F (204 C) 

Homemade Grape Nuts
(adapted from More-with-Less

1 1/2 c. flour (I used half spelt, half ground buckwheat)
1/4 c. wheat germ
1/2 c. (or less) coconut crystals (may use other sweetener; use a little over 1/3c. if liquid)
1 c. soymilk + 1 tbs. lemon juice 
1/2 t. baking soda
pinch of salt

* Beat all ingredients until smooth.
* Spread dough onto a large greased cookie sheet and bake at 350 F (177 C) for 25-30 min. 
* Crumble while still warm using a blender, a cupful at a time.  
* Crisp in oven, set at 250 F (120 C), for 20-30 min.
* Store in an airtight container. 

Monday, December 13, 2010

Soup's on!

We've been all about soup lately!  It's warm and delicious, all fits in one bowl...what more could you ask for?

Last week we tried these and maybe you would like them, too ;)
A blog I recently discovered and definitely recommend.

The Lentil recipe we followed pretty closely.  Good with a little salsa on top.  (Pictured above with a side of toasted sprouted wheat bread smeared with Earth Balance) 

Our broccoli went bad, so we made Potato Avocado Soup, but it was still delicious!  We decided not to blend ours, we were too hungry and impatient ;)  The potato soup tasted nice with a smoky pepper sauce.

I definitely recommend adding a little spice to both, if you're the spicy type. 

Friday, December 10, 2010

December Bulk Order

Remember the Green and Crunchy blog?  It was one of my all-time favorites.  At some point the blog's author, Sheri, began sharing images of her bulk food purchases.  Adam and I had heard of a group in town and the more we saw Sheri's posts, the more we realized that it was time we got started.  Unfortunately her blog no longer exists, but her inspiration stuck with us and we have proudly bought in bulk ever since.

We don't buy nearly as much as she did, but then again there are only two of us (she fed seven!).  The extra coconut crystals are gifts for the Moms.  We've been experimenting with it lately and thought our moms might, too.  A couple of things were left out of our order, which happens occasionally.  We often put our order in the night before and I assume they run out of certain items before filling our order.  Though sometimes a little disappointing, we're happy to save on the items we do receive.

Does anyone else order in bulk? 
I'd love to hear about others' bulk buying adventures ;)      

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I'd Rather Go Blind

I can not get enough of this song! Trixie Whitley's voice is incredible. I have been listening to this over and over on youtube today and realized that I had to share it with everyone possible.
So enjoy!

Thursday, November 11, 2010


Hey.  Really I just wanted to check in and let ya know that I'm still kickin'.  No extended entry today.  Just saying hey and heading over to check up on some of my favorite blogs I've missed the last few weeks. 

One thing I will say is that Adam and I were disgusted with the results of the recent vote.  One good thing that came out of Missouri was legislation against puppy mills.  Yay for that! 

We've been thinking a lot about Canada these days.  Honestly it's not just about the vote (though US politics has a something to do with it).  I have wanted to travel north for awhile and why not just try living there to get a feel for it?  We've both decided to get a masters in library science (we've quite taken to the field ;) and school is fairly cheap in Canada, even for internationals.  Cost of living is another thing to consider, but if we can make it work, well we are seriously considering heading in that direction a couple of years from now.

Feel free to leave a message just to say 'hey.'  I'd love to hear from you guys! 

Monday, November 1, 2010


I went geocaching for the first time a couple of weeks ago with my niece, Madi.  If you haven't been, it's awesome!  A little adventure and scavenger hunt typed up into one.  Not sure when I will get my own device, but I am definitely hooked.

See that little fellow above?  That was my treasure find of the day.  I found a mini-crayon set in my purse to leave behind and retrieved this little guy.  Next hunt I will be sure to take a little packet of items in preparation for another geocache exchange.  How awesome is it that you can go on a modern day treasure hunt like this?  I love it!

So, we had a couple of people in my department transfer to another library branch in town.  Hence I have had little blog time due to picking up tons of hours.  The good thing is that it will help me to save a little money.  My bank account has been looking puny since my auto insurance payment and replacing my windshield.  OH and why did I need to replace my windshield?  Because some kids got into a fight that involved a homemade billy club, which was actually a sawed-off bat, and my windshield got hit in the midst of it.  Wild huh?  Just another day at the library ;)

Friday, October 15, 2010

Happy Fall!

Japanese Stroll Garden 2010
Hey!  It's been awhile since I've visited the blog world.  There've been a lot of changes around here lately and I've just been catching up with life lately :)  But I hope to set aside time soon to start blogging more regularly.

Today, Adam and I went to check out the new Botanical Center.  Actually we saw the ribbon cutting on Monday, which was super exciting!  But Adam got excited and I realized that he hadn't been out to see any of the gardens or park.  Since we were both off work today we took advantage of the beautiful weather, packed a lunch, and enjoyed the beauty of the area.  What a lovely day!

The picture above was taken the same day as the pics from the post below.  Adam and I decided not to take a camera today and to just take everything in.  We actually only saw half of the area because it's HUGE.  So next week we're heading back to look over the other gardens and lake area.  If you ever visit the Ozarks I definitely recommend this stop.

Stay tuned:  I still have book reviews and a giveaway to come (I haven't fogotten ;), chocolate sampling reviews, and more pics from Dancing Rabbit.

Friday, September 17, 2010


Finger suckers
Today is my Dad's birthday :)  

The pics are from a venture to the Japanese Stroll Garden with my brother and his baby Jude.

Two blog entries in one day...crazy, huh?  (here's the other)

Creamy Green deLight

Strange title, I realize that.  Last night we were listening to Type O Negative.  And while we were gazing at the very greenness that we were about to munch on, Adam realized that the song Creepy Green Light was playing and I couldn't resist ;)

We tried out mung bean noodles for this dish.  These fellas have a definite beany taste and hearty texture, both of which we enjoyed.  And, like Soba noodles, are a quick fix, taking no more than 6-8 minutes.

For the sauce we were inspired by the Roasted Garlic Artichoke Spread from Eat, Drink and Be Vegan.  For 45-50 min. you roast a mixture of garlic, artichokes, oregano, oil and lemon juice.  I mashed some white beans and mixed them with soy milk and black pepper while heating over medium low heat.  Next I added the garlic artichoke mixture, red onion, chopped olives, and marinated shiitake mushrooms

This dish was served up on a bed of spinach and sprinkled with leftover topping from the previous night (cashews, nutritional yeast and hemp seed).  After the photo was taken I covered it in nutritional yeast and I would highly recommend this!  In fact, this dish would be quite good with nutritional yeast mixed into the sauce to create a sort of beany fettuccine.

All in all, not bad.  In the future I would like to add more herbs and garlic.  I would also recommend frying the onions and mushrooms ahead of time (which we did not do) to really bring out the flavors.


Wednesday, September 15, 2010

"Squash the Shiitake" Stir-fry

Just a quick number from tonight's dinner.  Most of the veggies were local.  Since we missed the Farmers Market on Saturday we stopped by Homegrown Foods while doing laundry.  This place is awesome!  They just got started this year and already serve up a wide assortment of local foods and related items (coffee, pottery, etc.).

Before cooking, the shiitake mushrooms were marinated in tamari, Worcestershire sauce (vegan of course!) and brown rice vinegar.  The following were stir-fried in toasted sesame oil:  red onion, elephant garlic (local!), marinated shiitake mushrooms, yellow squash, green pepper, turnips, cashews and the remaining marinade.  

After boiling and rinsing the soba noodles, I mixed in some toasted sesame oil, basil, black pepper and black sesame seeds.  Then these were tossed in with the veggie mixture.

Served up with a topping of fresh sprouts and a mixture of finely chopped cashews, hemp seed and nutritional yeast.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Dancing Rabbit pt. 2 - Canning

This is the second installment about my adventure to Dancing Rabbit, an amazing Ecovillage in North East Missouri.  In case you missed the first part, you can check it out here.

We had an AMAZING time!  We made salsa, applesauce, peach jam and pickled okra.  Check out the Milkweed's entry, too!
Getting started with salsa
Down to business

A giant bowl of salsa!
Tina cranks while I concentrate, oh so hard, on watching

We got to take home lots of goodies, as you can see above :)  Aprons, canning books, canning funnels, canning tongs, FOOD, and a few other things (like smiles!).  And yes, that is Vegan Cream Cheese topped Carrot Cake.  If you have the opportunity to take part in such an excursion, I highly recommend it!

Other things...
I have been enjoying my offline time more and more.  And in my efforts to make more time for other things, I'm trying to spend less time online.  This week I made a firm decision to only check facebook once a week.   I have already been limiting blogging time, but still plan to aim for 1 to 2 entries each week, so please stick with me :)  I do still check out many other blogs, though I haven't been leaving as many comments.  Just fyi, for anyone who might wonder.  There is so much inspiration out there and it would be a shame to give up all of that!

Speaking of blogs, I was sad to discover that Green and Crunchy no longer exists.  If anyone knows the story, please fill me in.  This blog was a true inspiration!  It's what gave us the motivation to join a bulk-buying co-op.

Blog Updates (They may happen slowly, but they are coming!)
Coming Up:   Cookbook reviews and giveaway;  DR pt. 3;
Summer Garden pics

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Why Vegan? - a story from Warped Tour

Here's a pretty cool video about a girl who decided to go vegan after attending Warped Tour.  I could not post the clip here, so please follow the link.  To those who are already vegan, this shows that we can make a difference in a variety of venues.  You never know who might be inspired to make a change ;)  Organizations like Vegan Outreach off lots of resources to help anyone interested in reaching out to their community.

Other sites that might be of interest:
Info. for new vegans 
Why Vegan - Vegan Outreach

Blog Updates
Coming Up:  DR pt. 2; cookbook reviews and giveaway; and more...
Recent Changes:  You might notice that there is now a search bar to aid in searching through past entries.  This has allowed me to condense the amount of labels used ;)  More to come...    

Monday, August 30, 2010

Dancing Rabbit pt. 1 - Welcome to the Milkweed Mercantile

Milkweed Mercantile
This weekend was amazing!  We hit the road Friday morning for Dancing Rabbit, an ecovillage in Northeastern Missouri.  We stayed at the Milkweed Mercantile (pictured above), a bed and breakfast that just opened this year.  After we unloaded, Alline gave us a quick overview of the neighborhood, we had a few beers and relaxed.  Alline and Kurt were wonderful hosts!  
Alline has a point...haha, ok maybe that was corny
Jessica, Tina, Ann and Bobbie try to focus in the sun
Kurt and Alline behind the counter busy with dinner prep. and serving beers ;)

A fuzzy pic, but doesn't Kurt look so happy to serve?  haha ;)

Fancy dinner arrangement
Ann and Jessica enjoying the amazing hammock chairs

Bobbie and I having an intense discussion (evidently) over beers

Want to find an Intentional Community near you?:  Check out the Fellowship for Intentional Communities.

Credit:  Thanks to Ann for allowing me to use a few of her photos!  (The first one of the Mercantile and the last photo)

Next up: Photos from the canning seminar!

Still to come:  Dancing Rabbit tour, more book reviews and a cookbook give away, garden pics, food and projects.

FYI:  Some changes are on the way!  I'm hoping to make some long desired changes in appearance to this blog.  For awhile I considered starting a second blog for projects and inspiration, but I have decided to integrate those ideas with this blog.  Exciting for some and not to others, but you have the power to choose what you read ;)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Chocolate-Covered Almond Tangerine Balls

Chocolate-Covered Almond Tangerine Balls
from Sweet Utopia by Sharon Valencik

4 small tangerines
2 c. sugar
1 lb. raw or lightly toasted slivered almonds
1 c. choc. chips or 6 oz. semisweet choc. (melted)

Squeeze the juice from 1 of the tangerines and strain it through a fine-mesh strainer.  Combine the juice with the sugar in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil on medium heat, stiffing often.  Lower the heat slightly and simmer for 10 minutes.  Let cool.

Rinse and peel the remaining tangerines.  Place the peels in a small saucepan with enough water to cover them completely and bring to a boil.  (Save the fruit to eat at another time.)  Boil the peels for 5 minutes *start timing after the water boils).  Drain and rinse the peels under cold water.  Drain again and pat them dry thoroughly with paper towels so there is minimal moisture on the peels.  Remove any black spots.

Combine the peels and the almonds in a food processor and process until finely ground, stopping to scrape down the sides of the container as necessary.  You may need to process them in 2 batches, depending on the size of your food processor.  Do not let the mixture become a paste.  Transfer to a bowl, add the juice mixture, and stir with a wooden spoon until evenly combined.

Shape into 1-inch balls using wet hands.  Let the balls rest uncovered at room temperature for 8 to 12 hours to dry out a bit.

Dip the balls in the melted chocolate until evenly coated all over.  Arrange the coated balls in a single layer on waxed paper and refrigerate to allow the chocolate to harden.  Store layers of balls between waxed paper in a sealed container in the refrigerator.

Don't these sound delicious?  The pic. is from the book because I still have yet to try them.  But if any of you do soon, feel free to send me the pic and I'll put it up ;)

More from Sweet Utopia:
Chocolate Chip and Nut Streusel Coffee Cake
Book Review

This weekend I am headed up to Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage with a few girlfriends.  And I'm psyched!  We're staying at the Milkweed Mercantile  and attending a canning seminar.  I will try to take some photos, but sometimes I get a bit carried away and forget to use my camera.  Regardless, you WILL hear about the adventure ;)

Monday, August 23, 2010

Monday News

Cameron ponders the backyard

This week I would just like to encourage you to check out  (if you don't already).  This is an awesome place to get a good dose of vegan related news stories, books and a variety of good information.
Some recent entries to check out:

Egg Recall Increases to Half a BILLION - You've got to be kidding me!  But guess what, they're not kidding...

Humane Society Calls to Abolish Battery Cages - Perhaps Salmonella is good for something.

Beef, the Tenth Healthiest Food - Served up with a side of heart disease, yum!

Hog Farmer Goes Vegan
As recommended at, check out Jack Norris RD.  This blog is, also, really impressive.  As it mentions on the site, it's intentions are to provide: summaries of recent research related to veg. diets and notifications of VeganHealth,.org updates. 

Something else:
Animal Rescue Stamps:  This is actually from Vegan Etsy, but it was too sweet to not share with you ;)

Stay tuned...
More book reviews and a give away to come!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Chocolate Chip and Nut Streusel Coffee Cake

Maybe your taste buds are aching to have a go at a recipe from Sweet Utopia after reading my last entry.  Here's the first promised recipe.  Of everything I tasted, this was by far my favorite and I hope that you enjoy it, too!  As I mentioned, you can replace the granulated sugar with date sugar and it tastes great.  Everything else we kept the same.  For the vegan butter substitute I think we used Coconut Oil.  We did not have a springform pan and just used a 9 in. square pan, which worked just fine.  Also, we do not have an electric mixer and did not find it necessary.

Chocolate Chip and Nut Streusel Coffee Cake
from Sweet Utopia by Sharon Valencik

For Coffee Cake:
2 c. AP Flour
2 t. baking powder
1/2 t. baking soda
1/4 t. salt
1 1/4 c. granulated sugar
1 c. soy cream cheese
1/2 c. vegan butter substitute, room temp.
3/4 c. soymilk
2t. white vinegar
1 t. vanilla extract
1 1/4 c. nondairy choc. chips

Streusel Topping:
1/3 c. granulated, brown or turbinado sugar
1 1/2 t. ground cinnammon
1/2 - 2/3c. chopped walnuts or pecans

Preheat oven: 350 degrees.  Oil and flour a 9 in. springform pan.

Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a bowl.  In a separate large bowl, combine sugar, cream cheese, and "butter."  Beat with an electric mixer until smooth.  Beat in soymilk, vinegar, and vanilla extract.  Add the flour mixture and stir until just combined.  Fold in chocolate chips.  Pour half of the cake batter evenly into the prepared pan.

To make the streusel topping, combine the sugar and cinnamon.  Add the nutes and toss until evenly mixed.  Sprinkle half of the streusel topping over the batter in the pan.  Pour the remaing batter evenly into the pan and sprinkle with the remaining streusel topping.

Bake for 50 minutes, or until the cake is golden brown on top.  Cool before removing from the pan and slicing.

chocolate chip and nut streusel coffee cake2

Thanks to the Book Publishing Company for allowing me to share this wonderful recipe with you!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Sweet Utopia

With a book like this, what's the first thing I do?  Flip through the pages and drool over the pictures.  And oh man, everything looks mouth-watering tasty! And believe me, I wanted to try everything.  (Check out this site for more images and recipes;)  So, I would like to take a moment to thank the Book Publishing Company for tempting me with such delicious things straight out of my mailbox and then giving me the opportunity to share such things with you!

A Little Education
Like many cookbooks on the shelves these days, Sweet Utopia by Sharon Valencik contains a "Stocking the Kitchen" section to inform you of anything you might need for the recipes.  Next, in "Succeed in Vegan Baking," Valencik shares a few tips on particular ingredients, including substitution and conversion charts.  Vegans with an assortment of cookbooks or experience will be able to skip this section, but these things are helpful for those new to vegan baking.  I am disappointed to see Nonvegan Alternatives listed in the substitution chart and, in general, find most of what this chart contains common sense.
The Sweets
What comes next?  What do you think?!  The good stuff, that's what.  All of the sweet treats are divided into five tasty chapters:  Decadent Cakes, Scrumptious Cookies, Creamy Cheesecakes and Pies, Velvety Mousses, Puddings and Cremes, AND Luscious Treats.  Most of the titles are pretty descriptive in their offerings, but let me clue you on what you can find in the last chapter.  Luscious Treats includes coconut tiramisu, chocolate-covered almond tangerine balls (I'm still dying to try these!), chocolate-rose halvah balls and more!  Over at Vegan Family Style, Debra has collected the whole contents page if you would like to check it out.

very berry corn muffinstahini coconut oatmeal cookies3

chocolate chip and nut streusel coffee cake3

Sweet Tastes
We tried the Chocolate Chip and Nut Streusel Coffee Cake, Very Berry Corn Muffins, Tahini-Coconut-Oatmeal Cookies, and the Cocoa-Berry Cake with Berry Cream Frosting :)  For the Tahini Cookies I basically followed the recipe and even with regular raw sugar these were subtly sweet, which suited them fine.  For the other three we used alternative sweeteners, date sugar for the most part.  The Very Berry Corn Muffins were about what you would expect and were a pleasant afternoon snack.  The Cocoa-Berry Cake was interesting.  I don't think that ours turned out very well because perhaps other changes needed to be made to accommodate the sweetener change.  I did, however, enjoy the texture of the cake, though the flavor wasn't exactly what I was hoping for.  Now, the Coffee Cake?!  This was my favorite!  It was amazing.  We used date sugar in the cake and in the streusel topping and this worked out just fine.  The texture and flavor were both quite desirable and it looked quite nice, too.  With a cup of the coffee on the side, well, what do you think?  AMAZING!

I think this is a worthy purchase.  Valencik has created some interesting, new spins on old favorites and made some gourmet-style treats seem quite obtainable from your home kitchen.  You may have to pick up some new ingredients that you wouldn't normally have on hand and put aside some extra time in the kitchen.  But I think you will find it all quite worth your while :)

***Stay tuned for a couple of sample recipes.  I will feature one that I made and one that I am dying to try.  You can also expect more cookbook reviews with a GIVEAWAY at the end.***

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Back to Business

So, I'm planning to get back to regular posts ;)  Last week was quite good, I got to spend time with good people and enjoyed every bit of it!  Over the weekend I headed to St. Louis, which was a fun venture.  Although I will admit that my van was probably too crowded with family members.  I have decided that traveling with 6 family members on a weekend excursion may not be the most ideal situation. 

Here's what's ahead:
Why Vegan?:  A new feature for Wednesdays to discuss the MANY reasons and benefits of being vegan, along with other related topics.
St. Louis Vegan Eats
Cookbook Reviews AND CONTEST!!  (at long last, eh?)

Monday, July 26, 2010


The pic's from Tiff's wedding.  She had this awesome photo booth at the reception.  Everything was pretty lovely, though brutally hot at the botanical gardens.  And, though I still stand that I am not very fond of weddings, it was quite lovely.

So, I just wanted to check in, so you would know that I have not disappeared ;)  I'm pushing the reviews and contest back a week or so.  Honestly, I just haven't made enough time for friends these days.  And since they have some time freed up, I'm reserving my time for them.  Not that I don't consider some of you friends!  But you know how it is.  In the mean time, I do hope to slip in some blog reading time.  There are quite a few I need to catch up on.

Oh, and for any who wondered, the niacinamide has helped my anxiety tremendously!  There's a lot of stuff I'm still sorting out, but things are getting better :)  If you want to understand me a little better and what sorts of things I'm dealing with you can check this COH site out.  I'm not ready to go in to details, but opening up a little has really helped.

Monday, July 12, 2010

Monday News

Welcome to the second edition of the Monday News!  This is just a sampling of my recent discoveries, click the links for the whole story.  If you have any ideas or news stories that you would like to contribute please let me know!

Monkey Cat
Ok, not literally, but this is seriously cool.  Observers have suspected wild cats of mimicking other animals, but until now it had never been documented.  "Cats are known for their physical agility, but this vocal manipulation of prey species indicates a psychological cunning which merits further study," said WCS researcher Fabio Rohe."  A cat making monkey calls?  That seems like a cunning cat to me!

Obama Responds to a Vegan Outreach
(discovered through Vegan Outreach)
"Americas would actually benefit from change in diet."  Check out Obama, too bad we can't be too progressive.  But I can appreciate that he cares, even if it's not enough.   

Cage-free Coming to California
A step in the right direction.  Check out Vegan Outreach for more.

An Act of Terrorism?
Evidently not!  The case against 4 animal rights activists who were arrested in Santa Cruz in 2009 has been dismissed!  Get more details here and here.

New Species
(I'm a sucker for a new species, so from now on when I spot one you're sure to hear about it!)
Pancake Batfish - 2 new species!



A Squat Cafe?
Perhaps, like me, you thought that squatting was reserved for homeless or bohemian types that take up temporary residency in an abandoned building.  Well, at the Vegan Backpacker they put this myth in it's place.

My Thoughts
I can really appreciate this thought on Vegan Outreach.  I won't lie, I've been a little frustrated by the question of honey popping up on various blogs lately.  But I truly do not mean my frustrations to be an insult to anyone.  It's good that people question things and put thoughtful efforts into making their own decisions about how to live their lives.  But Vegan Outreach reminded me of something important.  As vegans, we are all striving to make a difference.  And while I do think it's important for us to support one another and discuss our questions and concerns, perhaps I shouldn't feel so much frustration.  After all, we have bigger problems to contend with ;)

Contest Update
The Give-away is still coming!  I will be out of town part of the week for my friend Tiff's wedding :)  So I may not be able to start the reviews until next week.  Sorry to put you all in suspense, but I promise the day will come!

So, here's some good news:  The awesome vegan cartoonist Dan Piraro is allowing me to post some of his comics for my news entries :)  He's very talented and of course I'm very flattered to share these right here with you guys.   (I will work on making these more viewer friendly, for now click for an enlarged image.)

Friday, July 9, 2010

Contest Preview

Way back in April I mentioned that I would be having my very own contest :)  Well, it's coming up in the next week or two.  First I will be reviewing Sweet Utopia and provided you with sneak peaks at a couple of recipes.  Since we still have yet to purchase a new blender or food processor, I have not tried many recipes from Living in the Raw or Sproutman's Kitchen Garden Cookbook, but I will still provide short reviews.  I have, also, tried some tasty goods from Speed Vegan and you can expect a review for it, too ;)
The contest will take place the week after next and the winner will receive the book of their choice. 
Until then, be sure to check out the Book Publishing Company for more great books!

Monday, July 5, 2010

Monday News

Welcome to the Monday News!  From now on I hope to feature a bit of news on most Mondays.  These entries will include vegan and animal-related info. that I've picked up the previous week from other blogs and news sources.  Feel free to list any news you've picked up in the comments and let me know your views on recent happenings.

Cameron goes cross-eyed

Happy Birthday Cameron!
Cameron turned 6 today :)  Isn't he a handsome fella?!

Lion Burgers in Mesa, Arizona
Many of you probably read about this horror in the last couple of weeks.  I would like to thank Vegansaurus for informing me about it.  Supposedly the meat was sourced from a free-range farm in Illinois.  Oddly enough, it seems that the owner hadn't really done his research.  The meat was purchased from Czimer's Game & Sea Foods, but don't worry it's in Illinois.  This guy Czimer has sold tiger, lion, and liger meat (amongst other things).  And where did he get his lion meat?  Well, he doesn't plan to reveal that, but it's from a man who runs a skinning operation.  So at least more of the animal is getting used and his operation seems to be USDA approved.  But if you ask me, the whole thing makes me sick!  You see, according to these articles lions are not endangered, but why is no one concerned with the fact that their population is rapidly decreasing and they are red-listed as a vulnerable species?  

BP's Continued Distaster Now Includes Burning Sea Turtles
Thank you for the heads up.  BP's recent active solution to clean up their mess involved controlled burns.  They just happen to be burning up turtles, such as the endangered species Kemp's Ridley, along the way.  In the process, BP prevented those involved in rescue operations from doing their part.  Thanks goes to many animal welfare groups who have stepped in to discourage this sort of activity from continuing, for now at least.

Jasmine, a Greyhound Hero
Early last month the Kind Life featured a fantastic story about a hound with a huge heart :)  This girl has a truly wonderful gift and I hope that all of you read her story!
If you have any news you would like included next week, please send me an e-mail.  Does your pet or animal friend have a birthday coming up?  Send me an e-mail with a picture and I'll post a shout-out :)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Crafty Contests

There are a couple of contests you might not want to miss out on!

 TreeWool:  Are you a knitter or crafter?  Then check out this interview with Vegancraftastic and enter when some goods ;)

Speaking of Vegancraftastic, get over to her blog for a chance to write down your thoughts and dreams in a new pocket journal made by Studio827 KC.

And stay tuned!  I will be having a Giveaway of my own very soon...

Here are so more artistic and crafty blogs that I have recently discovered that you might enjoy ;)
My Zoetrope
The Sassy Crafter
Journal Artista
Herbivore Knits
Do Stuff Blog
iHanna's Blog: Create and Live Happy
GPP Network Street Team
Woven Letters
Creating FTW!
Film and Thread
Carbon Torbus

Know of any other great contests or arts/crafts blogs?  Feel free to post the link ;)

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Nutty for Nut Butters

It's Thursday...question day!

What is your favorite nut butter?  And how do you like to eat it?  If you have a delightfully nutty recipe, please share!  (I realize seed butters are becoming popular, as well, so feel free to discuss those, too.)

Adam and I have grown quite fond of cashew butter.  It's creamier than peanut butter and so delicious.  Our weekday morning breakfast consists of a bowl of oats, seeds, dried fruit, etc. - topped with a generous helping of cashew butter :)  We usually buy East Wind Community cashew butter.  Lucky for us they are located in Tecumseh, MO, which makes it a "small footprint" buy AND it tastes wonderful!