Friday, November 17, 2017

Vegan Banana Bread!!!

VBB is always one of my favorites to bake and share. These are special though!

First, I made several flavors of soy yogurt from homemade soy milk (maple syrup and cardamom, cinnamon and maple syrup, peanut butter and maple syrup, and dates with cinnamon and maple syrup) and then I used the yogurt to make these loaves. They are oil free as well! (I could totally make these gluten free!)

Monday, November 13, 2017

Raw Banana-Cinnamon-Cardamom Rolls...yumm!!!

Vegan chef (raw and cooked) on my way to certification and an exciting 
culinary and entrepreneurial future!

...and one of my sweetest inspirations...


My little Love!

Go vegan for Thanksgiving!!!

(I'm so excited because a family member of mine has decided to do just that!
 Major win for our household!)

"Many would agree that 2017 is the year of food revolution. Google shows a 90 percent increase in vegan-related searching in the last 12 months. People are interested in exploring vegan diets after reading Dr. Michael Greger’s book, How Not To Die. What brings the vegan movement to the forefront is the coalition of climate activists and animal protection advocates. Scientists have confirmed that our present diet, the overconsumption of animal products (meat, poultry and dairy) plays a major role in environmental degradation and climate change. Each year, 700 billion animals are slaughtered globally. Just for the Thanksgiving holiday alone, 45 million turkeys are killed. Such a practice violates the spirit of Thanksgiving. Hence, a cruelty-free holiday feast would be a compassionate choice."

-letter to the editor by Mira Fong, Santa Fe activist

***Vegan food is predicted to be one of the most popular consumer trends for 2018, and hopefully the trend sticks.
*** and I will add that science also confirms that a diet of animal products which are high fat, high protein foods degrade human health by causing and/or exacerbating diabetes, inflammatory and autoimmune issues, heart disease, obesity, cancers, etc...

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

It wasn't your fault. You aren't alone.

For those of you who have ever been victimized, in any way, you did nothing to bring that on. It is not a reflection of you, not at all. It reflects that individual, our human collective plagued by violence, and the repetition of the poorest, sickest education passed from one hurt person to another. It wasn't your fault. Don't fall into the victim blaming trap of confusion which can perpetuate patterns of self-hate over a life time. Remember that and carry on with courage and dignity.

Recently, a random man at the gym and I talked for a few minutes.  He was wearing a shirt that had Tupac and some other rappers' faces replacing the faces of the men carved into Mount Rushmore. I liked his shirt and told him.

We began discussing racial issues in America, which then turned into a discussion about violence in the military. He's a Vet. It was one of those snow-balling conversations.  So much suffering accumulated and an avalanche was on its way, and we did well in talking respectfully about such complex topics, which I appreciate.  These are really difficult topics to discuss.  

He made one remark which really disturbed me though.  He said that women who have experienced violence--gang rape was the example used in the conversation, as we both know women who have been brutalized in that manner while serving in the armed forces--should not have been hanging out with soldiers who were drinking.  He feels, in a way, those women brought this on themselves.  This is so cliche that I could hardly believe what I was hearing from him.  

How can it be that people still believe this shit, and so much that he has the audacity to voice it to a woman!  So, of course, I proceeded to let him know that it is never a woman's fault, or a man's fault, when they are raped, brutalized, or victimized in any way, no matter what!

This kind of miseducation is a disease...a human virus...and we have to work really, really hard to eradicate it.  Please keep speaking up. Share your story and confront violence by shining your light into this darkness.  Don't be silent.  Use your voice any and every time violence and idiocy of this nature arises.  Whether it be hateful, racist, homophobic, violence against animals, or whatever. Bear witness, practice non-complacency in a nonviolent manner, and be a tender warrior.  Let people know you aren't going to tolerate it, that they're misinformed, and that it isn't okay to perpetuate such patterns even via thought and speech.

All in all, I can't change anyone other than myself, but I'm not going to be a nice girl and keep my mouth shut either.  

Monday, October 23, 2017

Update from Zah...

For those of you who have been interested in the struggle of my 5-year pen-pal friendship with Michael Zaharibu Dorrough​, I wanted to share an update of some good news. 

His quality of life is improving although he is still an inmate of 30+ years in the CA prison system.  Here's a reminder of his struggle.  Michael has served 30 of those years in pro-longed solitary confinement for a crime he says he is innocent of.  While he has been incarcerated, he has been a published writer in several journals, he is a poet, and an activist.  During those years, he was able to be outside maybe one hour a day, but sometimes not, and when he was outside, he was still in another cage, literally, a cage.

As an activist, he and others have fought to end pro-longed solitary confinement in CA prisons (a UN expert inspected CA prisons a few years back and defined this and the conditions inmates live in as torture) through two hunger strikes, both which he played a vital role in organizing and participating in.  They have done numerous other projects struggling to improve living conditions for inmates as well.  It seems some of their struggles are making a real difference.

 From his newletter update:  

"Zaharibu let us know in a letter that he has completed a mentorship class called M.A.N.U.P. He will now be able to conduct a class, and he is doing so on Tuesdays.

Zaharibu's custody level has also been reduced, and therefore he can stay out on the yard until 8:45 PM.

Zaharibu is now also working as a clerk for the educational department. He is looking forward to that experience.

For the rest, Zah keeps working on his case for innocence, and on educating the people about the sentence of Life Without Parole in California dropped as an inhumane sentence, as part of the Lifers With Optimistic Progress (LWOP)-group."

please view these links for more info:

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Notes from a Vegan Hypocrite...Vol. 2

My latest writing project is titled Notes from a Vegan Hypocrite.

I want to share in hopes that my vulnerability will encourage others to examine their role as consumers in this world and to be forces of peaceful change, one dollar and one bite at a time.

I've eaten the flesh and drank the milk of enslaved, murdered and raped men and women of other species...and now I have to live with and heal (heal myself and do what I can to help other beings and humans heal) from my greed, confusion, and addictive tendencies.  Although I choose to be vegan now, and have gone in and out of it over the last 6 years, most of my 37 years of life I did not choose to be vegan.  I am the problem.  I am also the solution.

And I will have to pay my karmic debts too. Nothing is free.  I can never take back the harms I've caused to innocent beings and I can never neutralize my violent choices.  I am a criminal in my personal prison who has to live with what I have done.  And moving forward, I will practice forgiveness and I will make the most nonviolent choices I can as a conscientious consumer and global citizen.  I am a believer in restorative justice, therefore, one day at time, I humble myself and work to be the change I wish to see in the world.  My job is to change myself.

Consequently, I would rather be a hypocrite in public perpetuating the critical mass of change than a silent, complacent cog in the perpetual wheel of suffering and misery.

Notes from a Vegan Hypocrite...Vol. 1

I'm having some blasphemous thoughts today, Sunday of all holy days, which isn't unusual for me. It isn't a slight against Jesus, but against humans and what we do with our various agendas to control, divide and conquer. I'm sure Jesus would be sick if he knew what humans have done in his name.
I stood on my porch on this lovely Fall day admiring the mountain chain just East of my home. In English they are called the Blood of Christ mountains... So gross, so violent!!! But these mountains were here long before Christ, long before humans, long before religious dogmas, and long before colonization.

I just pray that our human collective will stop being such a dominating self-centered dis-ease on this planet. I hope we will stop putting ourselves, our convenience, our lust for power, our greed, our addictions, our imbalanced value systems, our materialism and consumerism, our wars, our hatred of the other, our etc, first.

We have the capability to do so much better if we will only wake up to our True Nature and act from that knowing.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Letting go...

Today, I am falling more out of love with the world and more deeply in love with Life...and I am fully immersed in the tantric dialogue. 

I trust the bigger picture and complex elements at hand...and I hold it all...all of this Life, the love, the tragedy, the beauty, the destruction, the death, all of the my heart and in the collective ethereal heart of the Divine We. 

And I am not going to "try" to change anything other than myself anymore.