• Vegan, Day 1 – Lucky Prosperity Soup


    Prosperity Soup

    Happy New Year!

    As many of you know, I’ve decided to go vegan for 2015 – aside from the quarterly visits to running sushi, which I refuse to give up!

    Luckily enough, I’ve spent many of my adult years as a lacto-ovo vegetarian, so I have a lot of recipes in my noggen that totally fit the bill! My daughter did a short stint as a vegan after she read the Skinny Bitch book, but I refused to let her be an unhealthy vegan; she ate mostly bread and soy pudding – no veg, no fruits – and I had to put a stop to it. Working to help her choose vegan foods gave me a bunch of experience reading labels and looking for hidden animal products.

    I am not planning on being super duper strict, though. I have honey in my tea as we speak, and I may unknowingly eat eggs or dairy if they are ingredients in something that I consume while I am on vacation.

    For the most part, though, I want to focus on fruits, veggies, nuts, whole grains and general health driven eating, sans eggs, milk, and meat.

    The internet is a FAB resource for finding all things vegetarian/vegan, including tons of yummy recipes. I am going to have to look through all of my former research to find my go-to sites again.

    Some great vegan sites I can remember off of the top of my head are:

    Oh She Glows

    Vegan Dad (he’s in Austria? Hm. Need to take a closer look.)

    The Gluten Free Vegan

    One issue I foresee is finding ingredients in Austria. Austria is one of those countries that is very “old school” – meaning that up until like 10 years ago, many restaurants didn’t even HAVE a vegetarian selection, unless you were willing to pick the meat out of something or believe that a dish with “only a little bit of meat” was actually a vegetarian dish. Austria is, however, getting up to speed, and there are some FAB vegetarian/vegetarian grocers popping up in Vienna, especially. There is even one down the street from my office, near the Westbahnhof.

    What am I eating today?

    For breakfast, I had 3 mandarines, an apple, and a banana. Well, the banana was a snack, because I got HUNGRY all of a sudden while I was cooking.

    Lunch is going to be my traditional New Year’s Lentil Bean soup with a twist. The twist(s) are additional spinach and carrots (spinach signifies dollar bills and carrots signify coins) and I also put coconut milk and curry in (curry = gold). When I was growing up, we had lentil bean soup every New Year’s day, as we were taught that every bean eaten represented one day of good luck in the new year.  Bring on the prosperity! Bring on the good luck!

    Dinner will likely be leftovers. We had kidney beans and spanish rice the other day for dinner (totally vegan recipes as well). It is filling, full of fiber, and already cooked! 🙂

    I’ll be adding my staple recipes to the site as I have the time to! I’d like to also share my experiences with you AND get and give some support to the other veggies/vegans out there!


    Prosperity Soup

    1 tbsp olive oil
    1/2 medium white onion (diced)
    500 grams lentil beans, rinsed and sorted through
    1/2 clove garlic, diced
    3 cups water (enough to cover the beans)
    2-3 tablespoons veggie broth bouillon (without palm oil, if you can find it. Save the orangutans!)
    1 can coconut milk
    1 tbsp curry powder + 1 tbsp tumeric
    3 medium/large carrots, cut into coins
    spinach leaves
    Put olive oil in a pan, heat on medium. Dice onion and saute it until clear or until it starts to brown. Add garlic and continue to saute. Add beans and enough water to cover the beans. Add bouillon, increase heat and bring to boil for about 5 minutes. Reduce heat to medium/low and add coconut milk and curry/tumeric. Simmer for about 25-30 minutes. Add carrots. Continue simmering for another 10 minutes, or until carrots and beans are cooked to desired softness. Ladle soup into bowls. Add a handful of spinach. Enjoy and prosper!

    Happy New Year!



  • Going Vegan in 2015

    I’ve made the decision to go vegan for the year 2015 – and maybe longer if it sticks!

    Part of me is a little scared. This is a HUGE change in diet, as I have been eating meat again for about 7 years, and I have never given up dairy for more than a week before. I also have a family to feed and cook for who would like to continue being omnivores.

    Part of me is really excited about the possibilities! From what I’ve read, vegans are way more healthy than their non-vegan counterparts! Refraining from eating meat and dairy can significantly decrease a person’s chances of having heart disease and cancer. You can read about many of the benefits of a vegan diet here.

    Not only that, but many people say that their vegan ways help them feel more connected to Spirit/God/The Universe. Doreen Virtue often states that dairy can block a person’s ability to hear his or her angel team and higher guidance. Avoiding meat and dairy also promotes a gentler way of living that avoids factory farms, the separation of mother animals from their young, and ultimately the killing of other animals for food.

    Now, don’t get me wrong – I don’t at all think that people who eat meat cannot or do not feel connected to the Source or to the Universe. I have been connecting with my team of advisors for years, even when I ate meat! I don’t think that eating meat and feeling connected to Source are mutually exclusive states. Not at all. I am just saying that I would like to see if I feel even MORE connected when I abstain from consuming animal-based foods.

    And – this is a total ego thing and I acknowledge and totally accept it – I want to transform my body. Many advocates of a vegan lifestyle taut the fact that veganism can help a person to lose weight almost effortlessly. I don’t mind putting the effort into working out, going to the gym, practicing PIYO, being active – as a matter of fact, I LOVE IT! But, my diet hasn’t at all been beneficial to my weight loss in the past few years, and I know that something has to change.

    I know that it might be difficult at some times, and I am setting myself up with some support from a friend and fellow blogger, Lisa Frideborg, who will be taking the vegan plunge with me.

    I’ve also decided that I WILL be able to have sushi once per quarter, but I will only have fish on those visits, not any other kind of animal protein or byproduct. I will also allow myself honey, as I am trying to cut down on refined sugars. Another part of this dietary change for me is getting rid of wheat, as I tend to be very sensitive to it (I’ve noticed it triggers my arthritis, makes me bloated and gassy, etc.). So it is not only about animal proteins and byproducts, but also about eliminating substances that I am sensitive to and that are detrimental to my overall health and wellbeing.

    So there it is. My pledge for the new year.

    I’ll be sharing my journey with you – I’ll list books and websites that I find helpful. I might even start sharing recipes that I like so that you can try them.

    Wish me luck!!

    Want to follow along or pledge to be vegan yourself? Send me an email! I will start a newsletter for all of us newbie vegans! Sign up here: