Happy Friday, my sweets! I am exhausted. With the countdown to Road Trip USA down to 16 days, I've got a lot on my mind and a lot of things I want to get done before I leave. What's that phrase? "I'll sleep when I'm dead." Hm, good times were had last night, but overall it's not really as fun as it sounds. :).
Monday night, my grandmother stopped in to check up on me with a massive salad in tow. I added half of a diced avocado, left-over quinoa and a Sunshine falafal burger to the spring greens, cucumbers, red bell peppers and celery, topped it all off with some olive oil and white balsamic, and around 1 p.m., delved right in to Tuesday's vegan lunch. It was a delicious medley of flavors, textures, and all around clean freshness. Then, three hours later, I had a Fage as a snack.I don't try to define the way I eat, (too restricting,) and I certainly don't want to feel guilty about my choices, but after meeting so many amazing women following vegan diets at the HLS, I'm more tempted than ever to cut out dairy.
As far as eggs are concerned, I find them to be deliciously-satisfying, nutritionally-sound, and I am confident that I can purchase dozens that have been brought about in a humane and sustainable way. When it comes to fish, well, dare I say that I simply enjoy it too much to give it up. Not to mention that it sure does make eating out and traveling, two of my favorite passions by far, all the more simple and exciting.
And yet even so, most of the time a plant-based meal is all I need. Tuesday night I met the forever roomie (my random freshman year college roommate turned best friend), C, at the Chelsea Market for dinner. The plan was to dine at The Green Table, a small seasonal and organic restaurant that has been on my mind for quite some time, until we saw the "under construction" sign.
So, we settled for Friedman's Lunch, an equally as quaint and eco-conscious café. I had a Garden Veggie Sandwich (lettuce, carrots, sprouts, avocado) on grilled sourdough bread with a mixed green salad and the necessary glass of red. I also "borrowed" a couple of C's Herbed French Fries because she's generous like that and gets full ridiculously fast.
Afterwards we strolled around Chelsea Market a bit, enjoying the many food vendors, and glancing into the home goods boutiques. There was an Anthropologie as well... but allowing myself to enter would've been a bad idea for my poor wallet. I could've easily take compulsive shopping to a whole new level.
In the end though, I ended up splurging anyway with a cup of café gelato. Or rather, C splurged, and treated me to it. If I had chosen thoughtfully, this could've been a smarter choice; sorbetto, gelato made with only fresh fruit, sugar, and water, was also readily available. Talk about food for thought.
If there are more than enough irresistibly delectable foods to satisfy my body, heart, and soul then what is keeping me from going 99.9% meat- and dairy-free (specifically in situations where I have complete willing control over my choices)? I cannot be sure. Looking back at the Cooking Ethically panel from the Healthy Living Summit, I'm reminded of the Skinny Bitch rant and The Kind Diet raves. I own both, although I'm entirely more partial to Alicia Silverstone, so surely I have the resources to aid my adjustment of habits.
The Kind Diet, in particular, describes 3 levels towards a plant-based diet. As the book description summarizes, "Flirts learn to dip a toe into the vegan pool, reducing their meat-eating and swapping out a few key foods for plant-based substitutes to see quickly how even small changes can reap big results. Vegans get to experience the life-altering effects of forgoing animal-products entirely, while still enjoying many convenience foods and meat substitutes in addition to the wonderful grains, vegetables and fruits that form the core of that diet. True enlightenment comes with the Superhero program, based on the principles of macrobiotics and built on a foundation of whole grains, vegetables, and other yummy foods that Alicia describes in detail."
This morning, as I sat at the dining room table with a scrumptious bowl of oats cooked in almond milk and topped with banana, blueberries, and almond butter, the wondering continued. "Your body already knows how to heal itself, you just have to get out of its way." I read on page 93 of September's Whole Living (yes the magazine is marketed toward middle-aged women, and no that doesn't deter me from savoring each page of balanced goodness). I'm certainly not sick but I've had skin issues since forever, I could do without the bloat, and my energy levels are inconsistent. Maybe the Kind Life is the answer for me, maybe it's not, either way I'm just going to have to flirt a little to find out... no complaints here ;).