I think the title inherently assumes I am doing this…..and doing it perfectly and succeeding! Quite the opposite!! I usually struggle daily……some days more than others.
I wanted to talk today about a couple struggles I deal with in being vegan. Granted, this makes it seem that I am on this long, hard, and arduous journey, and that it’s nothing but obstacles and roadblocks in the way of my success. That is not the case. Some things in my life make it conducive to me being vegan (i.e. my love of cooking), while others continue to make it a struggle (i.e. my career-planning and attending events). Here are some of the biggest struggles I have had to deal with:
Struggle #1-In my cozy little home I have created this comfortable and nurturing vegan kitchen. Granted, I do live with 2 non-vegans, but for the most part, I do the cooking in the house and most of the things in the kitchen are mine. The struggle begins the moment I step outside of my front door. God forbid I’m hungry and haven’t planned ahead what I’m going to eat! I am faced with endless choices of which very few are vegan……or at least that is how it seems.
SOLUTION-I ALWAYS pack some food into my portable insulated lunchbox. You can pick one of these up at Target or if you’re into reusing things and saving $$, check a local garage sale or thrift store. You are sure to find one. Even if I am sure of the layout of my day and don’t think I’ll need any snacks or sustenance, I always pack something because you never know. Sometimes your tummy tells you you’re hungry, and you can’t do anything about it! Some of my favorite “on the go snacks”: pita/hummus, chips/salsa, nuts, all natural fruit strips/bars (can be found at your local health food store or Trader Joes), a square of dark chocolate, fresh fruit, etc.
Struggle #2-As an event planner, I am frequently attending events, working at events, etc. If I am working, this sometimes means long hours on-site (sometimes up to 12 hours). If I am attending events, this usually means an open bar and an endless array of food. The obvious problem is that most food choices are not vegan. While not everyone is an event planner, I’m sure most of you go to events, parties, etc.
SOLUTION-When I am working at an event, I follow my solution above….my portable insulated lunch pail. It is my tried and true friend. When I am attending an event, it’s not so easy. If the event involves a sit down dinner, I am usually able to let the host/planner know my dietary needs and they are happy to accommodate. However, when you are dealing with appetizers, passed hors douvres, and food stations, it is a bit more tricky. And I don’t really have a good answer yet, except to have eaten before you go to an event like this. You know that probably 70-80% of the food choices will not be vegan, so there’s no sense in showing up hungry and taking the chance of making a poor food decision. So I always eat something in the car on the way there (to be as full as possible) and TRY to limit my food intake there. I did attend an event a couple days ago and had an unfortunate tortellini incident……definitely not vegan, but oh so good. The problem was that I didn’t eat ahead of time.
Of course, I think the biggest thing to remember is why you are vegan, want to be vegan, or are trying to be vegan. We all have our reasons for doing this, so that should and can be your biggest motivation!
Enjoy the weekend everyone. This coming Wednesday I will be sharing with you a couple quinoa recipes I’m going to try out. Signing off, Foodie Vegan.