Sunday, April 18, 2010

Putting babies in wagons too small and eliminating dairy

If you happen to be a friend of me elsewhere, besides the blog, then I am sure you already saw this picture more than once. But it seriously cracks me up. It makes Willa look huge! If there were nothing in the background to reference her size to, you would think she was about ready to take over the world!

And good news! I just now re-remembered how to send pictures from my phone to the blog! Now, I can post from work, instead of doing actual work. Night shifts are for the birds. To make this particular post a little more zesty, I thought I might just ramble about my recent delve into the world of veganism.

On the advice of a good friend, I purchased Alicia Silverstone's book, The Kind Diet, a few months ago. I still haven't actually read it, cover to cover, but I have tried a few of the recipes and glaced at a few sections. And I have been reading her blog weekly. She has come a long way from playing Cher in Clueless! She is living a completely vegan lifestyle and has a very non-intimidating way of writing about it. Since becoming a vegetarian a few years ago, I have always toyed with the idea of giving up the dairy products, so after reading Eating Animals and Alicia's blog, I gave it a little trial run. I did a pretty good job of it for about 2 weeks and it felt GREAT! I am not even kidding, my energy level quadrupled, at least. I loved what I was eating, I had fun cooking it, I lost several pounds. In 2 weeks. It was amazing. So you might be wondering why, with all these benefits, I didn't just keep it up??? I am wondering that too, now that I am writing about it and talking myself through it. Here are the troubles I had with it (and that I need to find ways to overcome).

1) Living in Lincoln, it is inconvenient to eat healthfully AND vegan anywhere but your own home. There are not very many restaraunts in a decent price range that offer healthy vegan options. Pasta is an option, but unless I can substitute whole wheat noodles, I don't want to eat too much of it. Sandwich places are a good option, just hold the cheese and mayo. And of course, Yia Yia's has a vegan pizza with soy cheese and veggies and it is super yummy. I think a good plan of attack for this setback (since no one seems to think I should move to New York City or Los Angeles just for the food) is to explore a few places that I don't normally eat, instead of eating at the normal fast food type places. Maybe Maggie's Wraps, The Cup, that Greatful Bread place...And also work on just not eating out so much.

2) It is a little bit more expensive to eat healthfully and veganly. Especially since my other half won't touch most of my new recipes. We have to pretty much buy 2 sets of groceries. And, since its just me eating the veggies and tofu, some of it tends to spoil before I get around to using it. The answer? Go to the grocery store more frequenly, but buy smaller amounts. And, really utilize the farmer's market this spring/summer.

3) My lack of will power. Sometimes in my personal life, I can be pretty darn lazy. Not usually at work, just at home. So sometimes even though I have the tasty, healthy supplies at home, I just decide we should get a pizza. Or, we go to a get-together and I don't prepare a vegan dish to take along. And the big one, that gets me every time, is baked goods. I have such a sweet tooth and when I am offered a cookie, a muffin, ice cream...I don't turn them down. Ever. This is where I really need to do some work and overcome my own personal shortcomings. And also, buy a vegan dessert cookbook:)

I think I am ready to dive back in, even if veganism is only something I do in big spurts. I just loved the way it made me feel! I realize that in our Nebraska farming culture, it is going to be impossible to eat this way 100% of the time, and I would never expect that others would cater to my new eating desires (it is nice enough that people provide me with vegetarian foods!) but you may see me eating a lot of vegetables in the future. Or toting around tupperwares of funky soups. But I don't plan to give up my quarterly sushi meals. A few times a year, some fish may have to die. Gosh, that sounds horrible. We'll see.

Maybe during my next bout of night shifts, you can learn something about Brad?!?

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Loving the porch swing

After we played with the bubble gun, and everyone in the Van Boening family (dogs included) had naps, we went to Grandma and Grandpa Luth's for Easter dinner. It was so tasty, my mom always does a great job of feeding this vegetarian:) Willa got a few more gifts, and then we sat on the porch and enjoyed the beautiful Nebraska weather. Thanks, mom and dad!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Scoring big with the Easter bunny

While we were away at church, watching Papa Brad make beautiful Easter music on his drums, the Easter bunny hid a few eggs at our house, and stuffed Willa's basket full of fun summer clothes, some books, a bubble gun, and a giraffe that plays a lullaby. For some reason, Willa always looks like she is about to take someones face off with her two little teeth, when I think she has the best intentions to give kisses.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

A true ladies' man

I thought this picture of Willa with Great Grandpa Christensen deserved its very own post. Willa has a touch of "stranger fear" sometimes and since she doesn't get to see her great grandparents as much as we would like, I thought she might be a little fearful of him. I was wrong! She sat quietly on his lap for a long time. When I mentioned this, Grandpa said something about always having this effect on the ladies.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Now you will know all about my favorite holiday

I adore Easter. I always have. I'm not even sure what I like best about it. I love the church service, the music, the Starburst jelly beans, the yummy meal, the weather...It is just my favorite holiday! So it won't come as a surprise that we celebrated big this year with Willa. Case in point, I bought "several" (okay, 5) different outfits that were suitable to wear to Easter church. I might have gone overboard a bit.

The day before Easter, my mom and I took Willa to Grand Island to an Easter egg hunt at my cousin Jackie's house. It was quite the celebration! There were over a hundred little ones there, and nearly a thousand eggs! Willa also got to pet a pony and touch a baby duck, goat, and kitten. She was thrilled! Right after the picture was taken with the duck, she tried to eat its bill. Or maybe she was giving it love, I'm not sure. Many, many thanks to the Gellatly family for the lovely day!