life. Posts

Portland Update: One Year

portland

Today, we celebrate living in Portland, Oregon for ONE YEAR. A year ago, we ended our epic, cross-country road trip and finally arrived home.

It definitely seems unreal. I keep thinking that there’s no way that I’ve lived across the country from everything and everyone I know for an entire year. But, I have. And, I’m so happy.

The best way I can describe how I feel about Portland is this: When I visited for the first time in March of 2013, I felt as though I had found something that I had been missing my whole life. All of a sudden and very overwhelmingly, I felt home in a way I never felt in Florida.

Very few people are actually from Portland. Most of us are transplants- coming from all over the United States to experience this same feeling- a feeling of peace, wonder, acceptance and adventure.

I wake up every day with bountiful thankfulness. I don’t know why I’ve been so blessed to have the opportunity to live here, but I know it’s exactly where I’m supposed to be.

The Vegan Diaries Part III

vegan

We did it! Scott and I successfully “went vegan” for 3 weeks. This challenge was eye-opening in many ways, and I’m so appreciative of the supportive comments and to those of you that made more meat-less food choices these last few weeks in support of it.

Eating a vegan diet is not something I ever thought I would do. I thought people that didn’t eat meat were crazy/trendy/hippies/etc. The entirety of the idea didn’t make sense to me. Come on guys, how can you say no to bacon?

Completing this challenge has been one of the most meaningful experiences of my life. It has completely revolutionized how I look at food- what’s good for me, not good for me, what this ingredient means and what gives me energy. I’m reading labels instead of blindly throwing things in the cart. I’m passing on foods with ingredient lists miles long. I’m more conscientious of my daily choices.

The Good:

Since eating vegan, I haven’t been sick once. This is such a testament, it’s hard for me to put into words. I have struggled with intestinal issues for so long that it has become normal for me to be woken at 2am by debilitating stomach cramps- sitting in the bathroom for hours wondering what I did to deserve feeling that sick.

I feel empowered knowing that my previous diet was causing these problems. I have the power to be healthy, eat clean and take back my life. I’m grateful. 

Vegan Smoothie

vegan smoothie

Well friends, we successfully made it to Friday. Hallelujah. This week has been a little crazy for me. Mostly good crazy, but crazy nonetheless. I’ll be sharing all that’s new in my life soon!

What’s new with you? Any exciting plans for the weekend?

Before you get too excited, here’s an awesome vegan smoothie recipe for you. I’ve been making this for breakfast most mornings, but it’s perfect for an anytime snack too!

Recipe adapted from Ambitious Kitchen

Blueberry Breakfast Smoothie (1 serving)

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1/2 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 banana (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 tsp chia seeds (optional; great source of Omega-3)

Thai Inspired Quinoa Salad

quinoa salad You may need to cancel your dinner plans for tonight.

Because you need to make this salad.

Like right now.

I don’t eat leftovers, but I would seriously scrape the bowl for days for this guy.

I’m kind of in love.

Did I mention it’s VEGAN?

This is the perfect summer salad. Easy to make, easy to enjoy.


Recipe adapted from Ambitious Kitchen (which is an incredible food blog, btw)

Thai Inspired Quinoa Salad (~4 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 3/4 cup uncooked quinoa (I used a pre-rinsed variety)
  • Crunchy salad mix (I used Cruciferous Crunch from Trader Joe’s)
  • 1 bell pepper, diced
  • 1 cup shredded carrots
  • 1/2 cup chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 cup raw cashew halves 
  • 1 cup edamame (or chickpeas) (I used pre-shelled)
  • Fresh lime (or lime juice)

The Vegan Diaries Part II

vegan finds at farmers market

Hi! How are you?

I am seriously wonderful. I haven’t felt this inspired in a long time. Maybe it’s all the vegetables… remember that one time I decided to go vegan for 3 weeks?

My quest for a better, healthier me is going really well. I thought the vegan lifestyle was going to be impossible, but it’s not. It requires more thinking and preparing, but a little more thought when it comes to food choices goes a long way.

Scott and I went to the Portland Farmers Market last Saturday. I am a total nerd for farmers and people who make their own bread, jams, etc.