Hopefully it'll get you thinking about our upcoming American "Thanks-giving" holiday and how you'll spend it this Thursday.
As soon as I realized that I didn't need meat to survive or to be in good health, I began to see how forlorn it all is. If only we had a different mentality about the drama of the cowboy and the range and all the rest of it. It's a very romantic notion, an entrenched part of American culture, but I've seen, for example, pigs waiting to be slaughtered, and their hysteria and panic was something I shall never forget. ~Cloris Leachman
*Also, note that yesyerday I made a post entitled "Simple Shoes", but it for some reason posted back on 11/15/10. So if you are interested in reading about or getting some new eco-friendly, hemp, vegan tennis shoes.....then check out the post!
Also, I don't want to pass up the opportunity to share this awesome video with you all. It's not related to veganism, but it'll certainly make you hopeful. Plus, the illustration is awesome. Enjoy!
1 tbsp EVOO
1 1/2 large onions, chopped
1 tsp dried basil
1/2 tsp dried parsley
1/4 teaspoon ground mustard
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 cups dried split green peas, picked over and rinsed
5 cups water
1/2 tsp liquid smoke (this replaces the ham that is usually in this recipe; it gives a smoky flavor)
EVOO drizzle (since it's a fresh drizzle, use really good olive oil; otherwise leave it out)
Heat EVOO in a large pot over medium, high heat. Add onion and spices and cook for a minute or two until soft. Add the split peas and water and bring to a boil. Turn the heat down and simmer for 20 minutes or until the peas are al dente. Add the liquid smoke. Take an immersion blender and insert it in the soup and puree to your liking. Some like it completely pureed and some like it super chunky. You can leave it as is also if you'd like a more brothier, really chunky soup.
Top with a sprinkle of paprika and a drizzle of EVOO. Enjoy!
Simple was recommended to my by Eco Vegan and my good friend in Georgia. I went online and checked them out. They have a great website and each of their pairs of shoes has reviews listed, which is super helpful. I wanted to make sure the shoes are sturdy enough for working out and can get wet in the rain.
Here are some of the materials used to make Simple Shoes (as per the top of my shoebox I received today).
Latex-is a natural rubber. It's easy to mold and provides lots of cushioning.
Recycled car tires-We collect used and landfill-bound car tires, cut them up, and use them as outsoles.
Bamboo-is an endless resource because it's so plentiful......it's super soft too!
Organic cotton-Our cotton is 100% organic.....that means no synthetic pesticides, fertilizers, or additives.
Water based glue-We use all water based glues. Better for the shoe makers and better for you.
Crepe-A natural rubber. It's tapped from the hevea tree.
Recycled inner tubes-We reuse rubber from landfill-bound car tire inner tubes on many of our shoes.
Hemp-Is soft and one of the strongest vegetable fibers available and it grows like a weed.
Fact: Sugar give you an initial high, then you crash, then you crave more, then you consume more
Fact: Sugar is a mood altering drug
Fact: Rats when given the choice to drink water tainted with saccharin or intravenous cocaine, 94% preferred the saccharin water. Sweetness is more rewarding to the brain than cocaine.
I learned these intresting tidbits from my Goop newsletter this week (www.goop.com). Read more from Gwyneth Paltrow's interview with Dr. Frank Lipman. He is an integrative medicine doctor based out of New York.
"Yoga is an excellent promoter of relaxation as well as a good form of nonaerobic body conditioning."
-- Andrew Weil, M.D.
This active version of Bridge Pose calms the brain and rejuvenates tired legs.
Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (SET-too BAHN-dah) setu = dam, dike, or bridge,bandha = lock
The Bridge Pose is a powerful tonic for body and mind. It provides an invigorating stretch for the chest, neck and spine. Traditionally, its benefits are said to also include:
- Stretches the chest, neck, and spine
- Calms the brain and helps alleviate stress and mild depression
- Stimulates abdominal organs, lungs and thyroid
- Rejuvenates tired legs
- Improves digestion
- Helps relieve the symptoms of menopause
- Relieves menstrual discomfort when done with support
- Reduces anxiety, fatigue, backache, headache and insomnia
- Therapeutic for asthma, high blood pressure, osteoporosis and sinusitis
It is also held to be a therapeutic for asthma, high blood pressure, osteoporosis and sinusitis.
Contraindications/Cautions - Use caution if you are currently or have experienced any of the following:
- Neck injury: avoid this pose unless you are practicing under the supervision of an experienced teacher.
Step by Step
- Lie supine on the floor, and if necessary, place a thickly folded blanket under your shoulders to protect your neck. Bend your knees and set your feet on the floor, heels as close to the sitting bones as possible.
- Exhale and, pressing your inner feet and arms actively into the floor, push your tailbone upward toward the pubis, firming (but not hardening) the buttocks, and lift the buttocks off the floor. Keep your thighs and inner feet parallel. Clasp the hands below your pelvis and extend through the arms to help you stay on the tops of your shoulders.
- Lift your buttocks until the thighs are about parallel to the floor. Keep your knees directly over the heels, but push them forward, away from the hips, and lengthen the tailbone toward the backs of the knees. Lift the pubis toward the navel.
- Lift your chin slightly away from the sternum and, firming the shoulder blades against your back, press the top of the sternum toward the chin. Firm the outer arms, broaden the shoulder blades, and try to lift the space between them at the base of the neck (where it's resting on the blanket) up into the torso.
- Stay in the pose anywhere from 30 seconds to 1 minute. Release with an exhalation, rolling the spine slowly down onto the floor.
Modifications & Props
If you have difficulty supporting the lift of the pelvis in this pose after taking it away from the floor, slide a block or bolster under your sacrum and rest the pelvis on this support.
Eka Pada Setu Bandha Sarvangasana (pronounced ACHE-ah PAH-dah, eka = one, pada = foot or leg)
On an exhalation, lift the right knee into your torso, then inhale and extend the leg perpendicular to the floor. Hold for 30 seconds, then release the foot to the floor again with an exhalation. Secure the foot again and repeat with the left leg for the same length of time.
Once the shoulders are rolled under, be sure not to pull them forcefully away from your ears, which tends to overstretch the neck. Lift the tops of the shoulders slightly toward the ears and push the inner shoulder blades away from the spine.
Deepen the Pose
Once in the pose, lift your heels off the floor and push your tailbone up, a little closer to the pubis. Then from the lift of the tailbone, stretch the heels back to the floor again.
A partner can help you learn about the correct action of the top thighs in a backbend. Perform the pose, then have the partner straddle your legs and clasp your top thighs. He/she can brace your outer thighs with his/her inner legs. Next the partner should strongly turn the thighs inward and encourage the inner thighs down toward the floor (as you resist the tailbone toward the pubis). Recreate this action in all backbends.
Please consult your physician before starting this or any exercise program.
Information courtesy of Yoga Journal.
I sought a fabulous recipe from the fantastic Colleen Patrick Godreau (in The Joy of Vegan Baking) and I was surprised to find she didn't have one! Shock! Horror? Well, kind of, but then I saw she had something called "banana crumble," checked that I had all the ingredients and therefore decided to go for it.
It was AMAZING! Wowowow!
A combination of bananas foster and a pecan-oatmeal cookie, served alongside a generous serving of Tempt vanilla ice cream (made from hemp milk) of course... Seriously good eats.
I highly encourage you to do it next time you find yourself with a couple of overripe bananas. Simply slice them and arrange them in a cast iron skillet with a little bit of brown sugar. Then combine your basic crumble (oats, flour, earth balance, vanilla extract, etc) and bake until crispy on top and bubbling on the bottom. Serve warm or at room temperature. YUM!