Wednesday, September 26, 2012

A Hug From Dr. Will Tuttle!

Yes, it is another post about Dr. Will Tuttle. Elena and I went to World Peace Yoga and Motion Studio last night to hear Dr Tuttle discuss the metaphysics of food.  Elena seemed to enjoy hearing him speak at the Walk so I told her she could go. When we got there, I had second thoughts. It hit me that this discussion would more sophisticated than the Saturday one. I worried she would get bored and make tons of noise. Thankfully, I did think to bring a note pad and pencil so she could draw if she decided. She did draw. She drew a collage of animals that Will referenced throughout the night. It was beautiful and little did I know, she drew it for him. Unfortunately, she ripped the edge a little when she tore it out of the note pad. She didn't seem to mind and neither did he. When he hugged and thanked her,  she was so excited. A vegan celebrity gave her a hug! (her words) On the way home, we talked about what he had said and it was obvious that she paid attention and understood what she heard.

It made my heart smile to hear Elena telling Rebecca about the eggless egg salad she made for us. She is not able to talk "vegan" with too many people so I know she is loving this conversation.

Elena and Rebecca when they first met ay WPY

To discussing our vegan passion with vegan friends,

Sunday, September 23, 2012

What We Don't Eat

Being vegan for Elena is about what we don't eat as well as what we do eat. We don't eat animals. Elena and I participated in the Cincinnati Walk for the Farm Animals yesterday. Elena proudly carried the chicken poster she picked from the Farm Sanctuary's table of stickers and posters and held it up high for all cars and park goers to see. I am proud to see my daughter living according to her values and letting her actions influence others. It was a beautiful day and we had a wonderful time. There was a vegan picnic after the walk, live music and many compassionate, friendly people to meet.

Compassionate kid with her poster
The best part of the walk for me was listening to Dr. Will Tuttle, the author of The World Peace Diet which is an Amazon best seller! According to his website, he is decribed as "Dr. Will Tuttle, author of The World Peace Diet, is a pianist, composer, educator, and recipient of the Courage of Conscience Award. A former Zen monk, his Ph.D. from U.C. Berkeley focused on educating intuition and altruism. He presents ongoing events promoting peace through compassion for all life".

I read The World Peace Diet earlier this year and  recommended it previously through Thierbach Vegan Adventure. I remember reading the book in the dermatologist waiting room (when the lorikeet bit off my mole if anyone remembers that previous post) when I read the chapter on fish. Tears streamed down my face as I learned things about the treatment of fish that I felt stupid for not figuring out previously.  This was such a powerful and informative chapter for me. Imagine how vegan geeky I felt yesterday when Dr. Will Tuttle mentioned fish while sitting in front of me after the walk. There were maybe 125 people who came out to walk and hear him speak. The setting was intimate and we met him afterwards. He signed the chicken poster you see above.

Dr. Will Tuttle

As he reiterated the environmental impacts of eating meat and dairy explaining how much more water and land are needed, he encouraged everyone to become vegan and then to encourage others to become vegan. This spoke to me as many friends have made it clear that they think our veganism is great but they are not willing to change and are almost looking for repect or an OK for them to eat whatever they want. It is not OK to use more water, land and resources than necessary. It is not OK to eat whatever you want and no regard for anything or anyone else. I understand that not everyone is ready to give up animal products however how can everyone not reduce the amount they consume when they know the negative impacts of their choices? I would like to think that people don't know because of course, they would change if they knew. His speech inspired me to have a different conversation the next time I am asked to respect or OK someone else's choices. Instead of politely changing the subject because I am in uncomfortable territory, I will conjure the eloquence, bravery and grace of the Will Tuttles, the Colleen Patrick-Goudreaus and the Elena Thierbachs.  I will respectively point out the environmental impact and health impact of their choices and suggest they learn as much as possible about what they eat so they can truly make the best choice for not only themselves but also for the animals and for the Earth.

My vegan inspiration

I found out today that Will will be speaking at World Peace Yoga next Tuesday. Jason, Elena and I are going! The event is open to the public and free. Click the link to learn more. I hope to see you there.

To World Peace,

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

It Is Easy To Order Vegan at...

I really need to post more often! I could say I have been really busy but the truth is busy or not, this is a priority of mine and I need to post more often. Ok, so being vegan can be challenging when friends (especially non vegan friends) want to dine out. I really prefer to cook at home where I prepare and control our food. However it is inevitable that a vegan will be forced to go somewhere that is not vegan friendly. I have made a few observations dining out lately and thought it might be helpful to share if certain restaurants make ordering vegan easy or not easy.

I went to Applebee's with coworkers and I had a lovely time. The company was awesome however my salad was grossly overpriced. I didn't see much on the menu to begin with so I went to the salads to see what I could do.  I asked for the chicken spinach salad with no chicken and no cheese. I asked if they would add a few other veggies. The server said no problem after he joked about how high maintenance I was in my ordering. The salad was a plate of spinach (which I love ), a few almonds and even less cranberries. I was charged the same price as the salad with the chicken breast placed on top and smothered with cheese. Not easy to order vegan at Applebee's.

I should have bought a bag of spinach like this!

Not soon after the Applebee's Spinach Fiasco, my team went to Barleycorn's and I was expecting the same experience. I was wrong. I mentioned I was vegan and didn't want any animal products and the server leaned in, looking at the menu and asked what i was thinking. Together we worked out that I would get a side salad that would include all the veggies from all the other salads and a side of sweet potato fries. My salad was delicious and only $3.99! Thanks Barleycorn's for making it easy to order vegan.

 My favorite place to enjoy a meal right now is Mellow Mushroom . They have tempeh and tofu as toppings. They carry vegan cheese and even have gluten free pizza dough. The beer selection is excellent as well. Look at this beauty of a pizza below...

The Mega Veggie with Vegan Cheese

To breaking vegan bread with friends and family,

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Vegan Thai in NKy

When I don't feel well, I like to eat spicy foods. The past few days I have had a sore throat and have just felt awful. I even left work early one day this week to come home and sleep. Needless to say, I didn't feel like cooking this week and Jason took care of many meals. We did decide one night to order out though. We wanted some sort of Chinese or Thai so Jason went online and found what just might be our new favorite restaurant. Mae Ploy Thai Cuisine and Sushi Bar is in Highland Heights close to NKU. It actually used to be called Chinatown (and still appears to be as the old Chinatown sign is still hanging up in front) and I used to go there often when I was in college. I had totally forgot this place existed.

We started with fried tofu in a peanut dipping sauce. The sauce appeared to have been made with honey however our server checked and luckily, it was not. This sauce is so good!

Fried Tofu with Peanut Dipping Sauce

 We all had a main entree with tofu and decided to get separate dinners versus sharing because we wanted leftovers. Jason had Pad Thai, Elena had the Mae Ploy noodles which had yellow curry with vegetables and I had the Vegetarian Noodles with no egg.  We shared a little of our dinners and everything was delicious. I am writing this a few days after and Jason ate Elena's leftovers last night. She was not happy when she found out.
Their sushi chef was not there so we could not order from the sushi menu (which looked awesome)  but apparently he is normally there. I highly recommended Mae Ploy for vegans, veggies and everyone else. We will definitely be going back.

Jason's Pad Thai

Elena's Mae Ploy Noodles

 To Finding Local Gems,