Saturday Shares 8.22.2015

Saturday Shares HeaderI’m starting to get excited for back-to-school. I love summer, but having a routine again is going to be nice. If only there wasn’t homework to monitor!

EasyLunchboxes

EasyLunchboxes – I am pleasantly surprised with these lunch boxes. I thought they were going to be just like standard Ziploc containers (light, bendable etc). Happily these are quite sturdy and have ample space. Trey used them a few days this week for camp and he liked them. He sometimes thinks these bento-style lunch boxes are too “babyish”, but these he was into. The price is great…only $13.95 for a set of 4.

Smashed Indian Potatoes – As a girl with a lot of Irish blood I LOVE potatoes. This version of Indian Mashed Potatoes from Vegan Richa looks heavenly. I’m pretty sure there wouldn’t be any leftovers at my house, but Richa’s idea to form leftovers in to patties and pan fry them is brilliant.

Thrive Market

Thrive Market – Thrive Market is an online store offering the natural and organic products at wholesale prices. I’m just starting my trial and I’m really impressed with all of the products they have available and the wholesale prices. You get 15% off your first order and that starts your 30 day trial. After 30 days you can sign for an annual membership which costs $59.95. I love that you can sort products by Vegan only if you like. The prices are definitely better than what I see at Whole Foods or on Amazon.

Vegan Starter Kit

photo credit: Vegan Cuts

Vegan Starter Kit – If you are new to veganism or if you have a friend interested in veganism this Starter Kit from Vegan Cuts looks awesome. A whole array of vegan foods and coupons ready to help a new vegan.

VegNews Awards

2015 VegNews Awards – Vote for your favorite vegan foods, blogs and authors in the annual VegNews Awards. Completing the survey enters you in a drawing for amazing prizes including a VitaMix!

* THIS PAGE CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. IF YOU PURCHASE A PRODUCT THROUGH AN AFFILIATE LINK YOUR COST WILL REMAIN THE SAME, BUT VEGAN GRETCHEN WILL AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION. YOUR SUPPORT IS APPRECIATED.

Saturday Shares 8.8.2015

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Happy Saturday! Here are a few things I found interesting this week…

Goat

photo credit: Mercy for Animals

Award Winning Goat Cheese Farmer Goes Vegan – I loved learning about Julian and Carol Pearce. They are a married couple who have been producing award winning goat cheeses for the past 20 years. They recently have decided to turn their farm into a sanctuary and make 100% plant based cheeses. This article from Mercy For Animals highlights their transformation. My favorite quote comes from Carol: “The reason we have become vegan is being around our animals, knowing they have feelings; they love, have friends and family… how can you eat them?” I look forward to trying their vegan cheese when it becomes available.

Dinner with Dan Buettner – Dan Buettner is the author of The Blue Zones Solution, a book that explores 5 places in the world where people experience incredible longevity. This New York Times article is very humorous, but it also addresses the real fears people have about eating healthier foods. The good news is that coffee, wine, plant based foods and eating with good friends are all parts of what Dan Buettner says contributes to a long life.

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Finding Vegan Community – Finding Vegan is a great resource for vegan recipes. Bloggers share photos of their vegan creations with links back to the recipe. Recently Finding Vegan started a community where anyone can join in and “discuss all things vegan”. The discussion topics are wide ranging and include things like: vegans in the news, traveling as a vegan, vegan fashion, and questions from non-vegans.

Vegan French Onion Dip – I am starting to get excited for football season (despite the fact that things are looking worse each day for my 49ers). We love to spend Saturday and Sunday afternoons on the couch watching football. I am always on the lookout for new snacks we can enjoy during the game. This French Onion dip from Oh My Veggies looks so creamy and flavorful. I’m fairly certain I haven’t had onion dip in the last 10 years so I’m looking forward to giving this one a try.

photo credit: Wild Mint Shop

photo credit: Wild Mint Shop

Wild Mint – Lisa Leake at 100 days of Real Food offers great advice about moving away from processed food. Her blog is not vegan, but I particularly enjoy her ideas for packing lunches. This week she introduced readers to Wild Mint. Wild Mint is a website filled with non-toxic and eco-friendly products. Trey needs a few new lunchbox containers for school this year and Wild Mint has tons of options all in one place. 100 Days of Real Food is offering a giveaway (through August 12) where you can enter to win a $50 gift card for Wild Mint.

* THIS PAGE CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. IF YOU PURCHASE A PRODUCT THROUGH AN AFFILIATE LINK YOUR COST WILL REMAIN THE SAME, BUT VEGAN GRETCHEN WILL AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION. YOUR SUPPORT IS APPRECIATED.

Saturday Shares 8.1.2015

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How is it August already?!? Summer is flying by this year. Here are a few things I found interesting this week.

Elizabeth Gilbert Podcast – Elizabeth Gilbert is the wonderful author of Eat, Pray, Love fame. She has a new book coming out, Big Magic. This book is focused on the creative process. I am really looking forward to reading the book when it is released in September. In the meantime she has a new podcast, Magic Lessons, that I have been listening to this week. She focuses on helping people get over their creative blocks. These episodes are short and full of excellent advice. Highly worth a listen.

Big Magic

Summer Fruit Galette – I am very guilty of buying too much fruit at the Farmer’s Market. This time of year everything looks so good! Lately I have been using some of my bounty to make freezer jam, but this Galette looks like a fantastic way to use up smaller amounts of stone fruit.

by Chloe – Chloe Coscarelli is a well-known vegan chef. She shot to fame a few years ago when she won the Food Network’s Cupcake Wars with her vegan cupcakes. This week she opened a new, fast-casual restaurant in New York City. This place looks delicious. If you are in NYC please stop-by so I can live vicariously through you!

photo credit: by Chloe

photo credit: by Chloe

Cherry Berry Coconut Limeade Smoothie – I love coconut and lime together. This smoothie combines both of those flavors with another favorite, berries. I’ll be giving this a try this weekend to beat the heatwave California is currently experiencing.

Dudley the German Shepherd – I received an email yesterday from one of my favorite organizations, Best Friends Animal Society, regarding a dog in need of a family. Dudley is a young, energetic German Shepherd who was rescued in Southern California by the Dirty Dog Squad. He was in terrible shape when he was found, but he has since been cleaned up and gained 10 pounds. He is now ready for a permanent home. Because of his energy and prey drive (typical in a GSD) he needs a home with an owner willing to train him. If you know anyone looking for a goofy, energetic boy to add to their family please pass along Dudley’s information.

photo credit: Dirty Dog Squad

photo credit: Dirty Dog Squad

* THIS PAGE CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. IF YOU PURCHASE A PRODUCT THROUGH AN AFFILIATE LINK YOUR COST WILL REMAIN THE SAME, BUT VEGAN GRETCHEN WILL AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION. YOUR SUPPORT IS APPRECIATED.

 

Saturday Shares 7.25.2015

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Saturday Shares are things I have read, found or seen this week that I find interesting.

Homemade Cashew Soy Yogurt – I used to love yogurt in my pre-vegan days. I have never found a store bought vegan yogurt that I really liked. Either the taste or texture was always a miss for me. I made this recipe this week and it was life changing. Perfect texture, perfect sourness and no sweetener.

Parfait

Important Vegan Nutrition Articles – I read two thought-provoking articles this week that really stuck with me about vegan nutrition. One is by Genny Messina, a well-known vegan Registered Dietitian. Her work is always intriguing and backed by science. Her article Preventing Ex-Vegans: Why Nutrition and Nutritionism Matter focused on the fact that as vegans we need to be guided by science, rather than grandiose claims that as long as you are eating “healthy” you will get enough nutrients.

The other article was written by a popular vegan blogger, Sayward Rebhal. Titled When Vegans Get Sick this article highlights the challenges vegans face when they don’t experience the perfect health they hoped for when they became vegan. As you can imagine this article was very personal for me, since I don’t experience perfect health. Sayward talks about how we can help, rather than ostracize, vegans who aren’t feeling well.

The Homemade Vegan Pantry – The original recipe for Cashew Soy Yogurt came from Miyoko Schinner. My success with that recipe inspired me to order a copy of her new book.

Homemade Vegan Pantry

Earlywood Wooden Utensils I read about Earlywood Utensils this week on the Pinch of Yum blog. Their handcrafted wooden tools look incredibly beautiful and are designed to last a lifetime. I’m planning to order a long serving spoon and scraper in the future.

Peach Cobbler Smoothie – Summer peaches are one of my favorite foods. This smoothie recipe looks like a great way to use up any overripe peaches. I love that the recipes includes oats, since it makes smoothies a bit more filling.

Artifact Uprising Photo Books –  When Trey was a baby I was pretty good about putting together a photo album each year using iPhoto. As he has gotten older I have slipped up and have several years worth of digital pictures sitting on my computer. These incredible books from Artifact Uprising are inspiring me to get my pictures off my computer and into a book we can enjoy. I admire the company for their eco-friendly practices, as well as the fact that they hire adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities to assemble their products in Seattle.

Photo Credit - Artifact Uprising

Photo Credit – Artifact Uprising

* THIS PAGE CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. IF YOU PURCHASE A PRODUCT THROUGH AN AFFILIATE LINK YOUR COST WILL REMAIN THE SAME, BUT VEGAN GRETCHEN WILL AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION. YOUR SUPPORT IS APPRECIATED.

 

Saturday Shares 7.19.2015

As I mentioned earlier this week one of the reasons I started my blog was to participate in the blogging community. Many of my favorite bloggers share weekly or monthly lists of things that they have seen, read or tried that they enjoy. I’m going to start doing that here at Vegan Gretchen with my Saturday Shares posts. Hope you enjoy!

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Julie Hasson Freezer Jam – I have not gotten into canning and have never made jam since I am concerned I would poison my whole family. Julie’s freezer jam made with Instant Clear Jel looks like the perfect homemade jam – no cooking required. My Clear Jel arrived yesterday so I’ll be making it this weekend.

Kris Carr Safe & Affordable Skin and Hair Care Brands – Kris Carr is one of my favorite authors/resources for information. Lately she has been putting together reports on makeup that is cruelty-free and made without toxins. Her latest report is on drugstore brands. I love a good deal!

Petit Vour Beauty Subscription – I have tried and loved the Beauty Box from Vegan Cuts, but I wanted to try another cruelty-free beauty subscription. I’m looking forward to receiving (and reviewing) my first box in a few weeks.

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Homemade Vegan Butter – I’m late to the game on this one, but I’m intrigued by the idea of making my own vegan butter substitute.

New Nordic Ware Bundt Pan – This arrived on Thursday and I’ll be testing a new bundt cake recipe in it this week.

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Korean Tofu Bibimbap Sandwiches – We love Korean food in our house and this sandwich looks completely delicious

Ta-Nehisi Coates New Book – Ta-Nehisi Coates is one of the most thoughtful and insightful writers regarding race in America. I have long been a fan of his writing for The Atlantic and I’m just starting his latest book, Between the World and Me.  The book is written as a series of letters to his teenage son and explores the history of race in America.

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Nordstrom’s Anniversary Sale – The perfect time to stock up on fall fashion at a discount from my favorite department store.

* THIS PAGE CONTAINS AFFILIATE LINKS. IF YOU PURCHASE A PRODUCT THROUGH AN AFFILIATE LINK YOUR COST WILL REMAIN THE SAME, BUT VEGAN GRETCHEN WILL AUTOMATICALLY RECEIVE A SMALL COMMISSION. YOUR SUPPORT IS APPRECIATED.