Posted in Veganism & Me

6 Months Vegan Checkpoint

I am writing this post to answer the following questions:

Why did I decide to go vegan?

and

Where am I now?

Since I was little, I didn’t like meat. Like most parents, mine would make me eat a few bits at dinner. However, they never made me eat red meat, so, therefore, I have never had a hamburger, steak, etc.. After years of struggling to get me to eat meat, they gave up. At that point, the only things I would willingly eat were bacon, ham with French fries (because that’s the only way my mother could get me to eat it), and McDonald’s chicken nuggets.

By the time I reached middle/high school, I had become completely vegetarian, since I had decided that bacon wasn’t a healthy choice of meat anyways.

I decided to try going vegan when I was on my semester abroad in Vienna, Austria. I figured it wouldn’t be too hard of a transition, since I haven’t eaten meat in years. My initial reasoning was for the health benefits of going vegan. While abroad, I made the choice to just not worry and fully enjoy myself. That meant eating all the different foods, especially dessert. Because of this, I had, obviously, gained a bit of weight and wanted a way to get back to where I was before I left. I decided I would just try it for 3 months and if I liked it, try for 6 months, and so on. I wasn’t sure yet, if I was going to stick with it.

Now, here we are at the 6 month checkpoint!

I couldn’t be happier with my decision to go vegan. My family and friends have been very supportive, my mother especially. She is always making new recipes for me to try, making me a separate dinner from what my parents are eating, and making sure I am sent back to College Station with plenty to eat.

Since going vegan, I feel great! I feel like I have become more of who I am/who I am meant to be and am feeling like my body is mine again. Another perk, my skin has never looked this good! (This is probably a mixture of being vegan and starting to use Curology skincare.)

In the beginning, I wasn’t strict about honey and gelatin (made from bones) being in my food, but now, I have decided not to eat either. I still eat foods that say, “may contain:_______” because that just means it is made in the same facility as something containing those things and I’m not going to be that strict. Plus, PETA even says it is fine and I’m going to go with what PETA says on this one.

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Since I have never really eaten meat, the meat like vegan foods don’t really appeal to me. I had a vegan burger once that smelled and tasted so much like meat, I couldn’t convince myself it wasn’t. I ended up barely being able to eat any of it.

Also, for me, being vegan has become a little bit more than just for the health reasons. It is my chance to make a difference. It is allowing me to reduce my carbon footprint and take a stand against the meat, dairy, and egg industry. (I have watched so many videos on how poorly they treat animals and it just breaks my heart.) I am not the type of person to tell you shouldn’t be eating meat or cheese; I don’t even care if you eat it in front of me. Though, if I even get people to consider trying veganism or even just getting someone to do something small, like using reusable grocery bags, I will be ecstatic.

I am willing to talk to anyone that has questions about being vegan!

I don’t think I am ever turning back!

Posted in Uncategorized

“What do you eat?”

When people find out that I am vegan, almost always, one of the first questions is’ “…so then what do you eat??”

People think that being vegan severely limits your food options. It doesn’t. I am going to regularly add to this post all the different vegan foods I eat.

***A lot of the pictures are taken on vacation. I am not eating donuts everyday***

 

 

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Posted in Tennessee

Gatlinburg, Tennessee

We headed toward the Great Smokey Mountains National Park from Nashville. We stayed in a cabin between Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge. We didn’t eat too many meals out, but got food from the grocery store instead. Because of this, I hardly took any pictures of my food.

***This is not the most vegan friendly city***

***We began referring to this city as a redneck Las Vegas- not my favorite city, but it is right next to the Great Smokey Mountains National Park***

Day 1:

On the way to Gatlinburg, we grabbed a quick breakfast from Chick-fil-a. I ordered hash browns, a large fruit cup, and orange juice.

We, also, stopped at Great Smokies Flea Market & Antiques . Not really a place I necessarily recommend stopping at; there is kind of just a lot of crap. We did pick up some watermelon, cantaloupe, and peaches, from the small selection of produce they had.  Both melons were delicious, but the South Carolina peaches were not all that sweet.

We stopped to get groceries at the Kroger in Pigeon Forge. I was extremely surprised by the vegan selection they had. We got breakfast, lunch, and snack stuff for the next few days. I even got a Daiya frozen pizza (the best vegan frozen pizza) for dinner that night!

Day 2:

For breakfast, I had a peach and made oatmeal with a banana and almond milk.

We hiked for the majority of the day. I packed almonds for a snack and had an almond butter sandwich and another peach for lunch.

For dinner, we ate in Gatlinburg at we ate at the Smokey Mountain Brewery. They had a few vegan options, like a soybean based burger, but I just felt like getting a Caesar salad with no cheese and oil and vinegar and a side of fries.

For dessert, we grabbed some ice cream from the Ben and Jerry’s store because they have make my favorite vegan ice cream. They only had two flavors available to get a scoop of, so i decided to just get a pint of the Dairy-Free Peanut Butter Half Baked.

Day 3:

Again for breakfast, I had a peach and made oatmeal with a banana and almond milk.

I ate peanuts for a snack, while hiking.

We hiked less this day and took a trail that led into Gatlinburg, where we had lunch at Big Daddy’s Pizzeria. I picked this place because I saw that they had soy cheese for the pizza, on request. I don’t recommend this place because it was just okay and a bit pricey for what it was.

After walking around Galtinburg and doing a moonshine tasting *yuck*, we headed back to the cabin for dinner and to play cards and watch a movie. I decided to eat just a bunch of fruit because we had a lot left and were leaving soon. I gotta say, it was absolutely delicious.

Day 4: 

I, again, had oatmeal made with a banana and almond milk for breakfast.

We packed up and headed out rather early. Packing a lunch and whatever food we had leftover. After driving around Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge for a while, unsuccessfully looking for handcrafted artwork and such, we headed back towards Nashville.

For lunch, in the car, I ate a almond butter sandwich, pretzels, and some jicama.

Photos that don’t include food:

Hanging out the car window to take pictures of the mountains