Thursday, January 6, 2011

Welcome 2011!

Hi Loves!

As promised, I am going to share some resolutions I made this year.  I am not sure I have ever kept a resolution I have made at New Year's, but isn't it fun to think about?  I would love to hear your resolutions to... I find plans oddly inspiring.  So here goes, my big goals for 2011:

1. To be a better blogger.
I was an atrocious blogger in December.  And I do not want that to happen again, because I love this little tiny blog, and it makes me smile.  And I LOVE to smile.  So I promise to post every week day, come up with a feature schedule (more on that later) and do all the things that good bloggers do... like take photos and share more pertinent things than which website is having a sale (don't worry, I will still do that too, I promise!).  Thank you so much for sticking with me through my not-so-excellent blogging stage, I am excited for what is to come!

2.  To be a better vegan.
I have been a strict vegetarian for 10 years, and soon after I became a vegan, I discovered that it was much trickier to avoid dairy and eggs than it ever was to avoid meat.  I decided early on that all I can ask of myself is to do my best, and slip-ups are unfortunately inevitable.  HOWEVER, I know M&M's are not vegan, and I ate A LOT of them this holiday season.  But I know that the dairy industry is yucky, and I feel yucky when I eat dairy, so I will try to make 2011 an M&M free year.  I know I will have setbacks, but I am going to do my best. 

3.  To be easier on myself.
OK, here is where I over share.  I am very tough on myself.  I always have been, and I just feel like I cannot help it.  Here is an excellent example of this behavior: I had a breakdown the day before New Year's Eve because my husband and I were having a party and I was terrified it was not going to be fun, and I quote "People will forget they had fun at our wedding because this party is so bad." (Did I mention I become melodramatic when I am hard on myself?)  The worry was in vain.  People had fun, and they laughed at me when I told them of my fears.  But even if they didn't have fun, I know it would not have been my fault, and I need to work on remembering that.  I know this issue is compounded by my insecurities about entering my seventh month of unemployment, but I am making a conscious effort not to allow this behavior to continue in 2011, for my sake and the sake of those I love (Sorry, Mom, Dad, and Victor, for the now infamous NYE debaucle).  I cannot control most of the things I blame myself for, so the energy is completely wasted.  And wasted energy definitely does not go with my vegan zen world view.  Hey, maybe all this saved energy will allow me to complete my final resolution, which is to take up yoga (a little too self explanatory for its own bullet), something I have been meaning to do since freshman year of college (6 years ago... oh my!). 

So that is all.  Hopefully by 2012 I will be a calm, superstar blogging vegan yogi, or at least well on my way.  In the meantime, I had some things I wanted to share.  First, I am obsessed with Alicia Silverstone's Granola recipe from The Kind Diet, and I realized I had not shared it with you yet.  This recipe was one of the first I made from the book, and I believe it is why I am so enamored with her.  It is so delicious.  And not just for vegans... my parents love it so much that I gave my father a HUGE jar for Christmas, and even Victor eats it!  It is delicious right out of the jar, or with soy milk, or soy yogurt, but my favorite way to eat it is on a parfait with your favorite smoothie.  I promise this meal will change your life.  Enjoy!

My beloved granola parfait... image via me

Mom's Granola

Makes 2 quarts.

6 cups quick-cooking oats
1/2 cup maple sugar (This is tough to find, and admittedly expensive, but so worth it.  I am considering buying online in bulk because I make this granola so much!)
3.4 cup wheat germ
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1/2 cup sesame or sunflower seeds (I prefer sunflower)
1 cup chopped nuts or raisins (I use a cup of both, and always use almonds)
1/2 cup safflower oil (My favorite oil!  I think I like it more than olive oil... weird I know!)
1/3 cup maple syrup (sweetest version) or brown rice syrup (slightly milder) (I obviously go for the maple syrup... so yummy!)
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
Spread the oats on a rimmed baking pan , and bake for 10 minutes.  Transfer the oats to a large mixing bowl, and add the sugar, wheat germ, coconut, seeds, nuts and raisins.  Stir to mix well, and then add the oil, syrup, and vanilla extract.  Mix until everything is moistened.  
Spread half of the mixture on each of two rimmed baking sheets (or bake in two batches), and bake for 10 minutes.  Stir after 5 minutes to brown evenly.  
Let the baked granola cool on the pans, then transfer to a bowl and stir until crumbly.  Store in an airtight container. 

A shirt that says kale?!?! I am in heaven! image via well + good nyc

Finally, I needed to share this with you.  My father and I went to Candle Cafe over the holiday, and I spotted this shirt.  Given my aforementioned love of kale, I am pretty sure I need to buy it. 

I hope you enjoy the granola!  I would love to hear your resolutions, or any tips you have for acheiving mine! 



  1. I would love some vegan chocolate chips in this granola! Maybe on top of some vanilla ice cream - vegan ice cream of course.

  2. That sounds so delicious! I am definitely trying that tonight... yummy!

    Thank you so much for the wonderful suggestion!