Why it’s so important to keep indulging yourself

If there is one thing i have learned , it’s that if you want to succeed in a long-term life style change- be it a change of diet, adding exercise, frugality or whatever you must always remember not to fall into the “restrictive” state of mind-au contraire- you must keep indulging your self every day.

This is a crucial rule of thumb, and in my experience once you have this covered- your total mindset will change and make it easier for you not only to make changes – but to maintain them .

I have heard  many people complain about their diet plans   and the main complaint is “how much longer can i keep going on like this? ”

The response is even more loud &clear when it comes to exercising not to mention money-saving issues.

“why should i live like that? what have i done wrong to be punished and not be able to enjoy life?” ”

well you really shouldn’t be punished , and you shouldn’t even feel that you are being punished, because the distance between feeling like that and terminating whatever change you began to make is very short.

So how can you have it all?

I believe that being vegan- and being frugal -are both about making choices every step of the way-not about restrictions. 

the choice not to eat animal derived products does not mean you need to sit in the corner with the lights off and restrict yourself to tasteless lettuce and pasta sans the sauce.

#1: learn to cook-learn to enjoy mixing beans , legumes, fruit, seeds and nuts-  in your salads20180508_124014.jpg

this is a simple example of yesterday’s lunch at work. I had some parsley and tomatoes so i took one of my ziplock freezer bags full of roasted chickpeas (recipe in the next post) and heated them at work and voila- i just upgraded my salad to a lovely protein+flavour indulging plate. vegan+frugal+indulgent.

#2:make your own flavoured nice-cream.here is a link to my post- start from scratch.

the link has 25 wonderful different flavours to choose from, and since they involve mainly bananas well then -frugal as well.

#3: buy all kinds of fruit- in every color-shape and taste. you can never go wrong with fruit. they are always tasty and even if you buy exotic &expensive fruit from time to time it’s ok. because litchi or pineapple or unique berries -are a wonderful addition to your plate, and cost less than all the junk food people turn to when in need of “something good to indulge myself”.

i have more to say on this important subject- in the next post.

the cooliflower.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to get up early

Assuming you were impressed with my previous post and thought it’s a good idea to start getting up early than here is how I do it.

*This is not  advice to change your habits- do as you please and fits you, I am not a coach/ therapist /any kind of doctor .just in case- here is my disclaimer:.discla

#1: I go to sleep early. as early as I want/can. this can mean 20:00 or even 19:00 sometimes, if i am extra tired and every one at home is good and happy and doesn’t need me.

#2: i don’t watch tv. well except for “the good fight” for professional reasons (and because i like Iuka ). this means i  don’t spend my evenings like most  people i know watching endless episodes of total s***.

#3: i put down my electronic devices at 18:00 -18:30, put them on “silent” and get a nice shower and ready for bed.

*I know some of the ideas  on this post are of no use at all for parents of toddlers, but my youngest is a teen ager so this works for me. I do remember that even when  my kids were young,  getting them to bed at 20:00 on week days was a goal achieved many times.yes it did mean that they got up early but so did i so fine by me.

#4: I get to bed early and read a book.this calms me down and let’s me sleep quietly and easily.

I  don’t mind people having all sorts of remarks on my sleeping habits, and  I  always tell them that unless they save a life/invent something useful/ create something unique / are having quality time with their spouse or children between 20:00 and 23:00 or whenever they go to sleep, they can keep their remarks to themselves.

When i ask people who comment on my sleeping hours what they do after 20:00 the answer 99% of the time the answer  is “i watch tv/ i’m on social media”. well-i’m not, and i feel fine .

the cooliflower.

 

why I get up at 04:00

 

#1: I am an introvert. meaning I enjoy being alone, I love reading, listening to music, exercising alone, meditating, just drifting off -you get the drift.

This means that in order to enjoy quiet hours at home and at the office I needed to choose between staying  up late and getting up early. I found out that since I  am a morning person staying late is not a real option for me.

So my spouse and I decided that he will be in charge of mornings-and i shall be in charge of the afternoons.

So this is when I get to work:(filmed at the parking lot where I work-so that I have actual evidence to present to you).

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#2: I am a morning person. I never get up later than 7 , and never have. not even as a teenager..this makes it so much easier .I admitt that telling a night owl the benefits of getting up at 04:00 is of no use.

#3: I can get so much done when I get up at 4.

I can make my vegan yogurt (see link in previous post) and stick it in the oven so when I’m back home- It’s ready.

I can soak beans- for the same reason.

I can clean the house (yes of course I do it quietly but i dont  necessarily need to shout while cleaning the floors-well not every time anyway).I don’t do the dishes or start banging pots and pans at 4 am but if I take just a few minutes the previous day to prepare the house -meaning pull the chairs up and clear the counters than i can finish cleaning in less than 30 min, and when I come back home -no need to do anything but relax.

#4:I can meditate and exercise quietly. no one is there to need/want  something from me.

#5: What’s that you say about morning traffic?and about horrible 17:00 traffic back home?

since i get to work so early- i can leave early. so win-win on traffic issues.

My next post will be on how to get used to getting up at 4 , because if this is a burden then just don’t. life is not meant for suffering.

the cooliflower.

 

 

 

 

 

Starting from scratch #2

#1.Greeting cards: Do you remember how we loved drawing as kids ?somewhere along the adulthood road we lost it, what a shame ,it’s such fun!

well i bought 100 craft cards and 50 envelopes- (everything cost me 7 bucks )- and looked in my favorite place for ideas: Pinterest. I love cacti ( plus they are so easy to draw so there u go).Everyone was excited about these cards – and besides cutting on the costs i could make it personal both on the receivers side and on my side.

#2: muesli.another very simple thing to make from scratch is this muesli. After opening a foul box of store-bought muesli i wondered what were the ingredients of a basic muesli and found out u can do just fine with just rolled oats and raisins . But feel free to add nuts; coconut shreds or dried fruit .

#3: your own hamburger buns .maybe even your own bread who knows.a great recipe from one green planet.

Easy to make and my omnivore family members don’t leave anything for me! Check the link for the recipe and enjoy!Hamburger buns

start from scratch

Like many people, I too am a huge believer in saving time in the kitchen. Between work and the kids and  house hold chores – it’s crucial to save your energy for important things.

And yet after I found some really easy and tasty recipes online, I think that some things are worth the extra few minutes. judge for your selves – check the links.

*vegan yogurt

this is a super simple and great recipe i make at least twice a week . I use vegan yogurt for my morning (and afternoon) muesli and yup it is as tasty as it looks.

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*nice cream

wow this one is a life changer. the whole family likes it and my omnivore son helps himself to a hearty dish  of the chocolate nice cream before going to the gym in the summer i remind you this is based on bananas and pure cocoa powder and some times i add a few dates so perfect as a pre workout snack.

*oat flour  and grounded flax seeds. these are not only easy to make (just grind them in a coffee grinder or a food processor) but because of their short shelf life it is wiser to grind fresh batches when needed.

*tomato sauce:  this is a good repurpose for very ripe tomatoes that you find hard to use for your salads so.

*cooked beans: these are so easy to make -why wonder about preservatives(and pay double the price) on canned beans?

these are simply an example- I shall post more . ciao! cooliflower.

 

 

 

 

 

 

a few tips on how to stop wasting time looking for misplaced stuff

After having spent yesterday afternoon looking for my car keys ( my son found them after i went frustrated to bed-they were hiding joyfully under the table) I spent some time thinking about how to avoid loosing those precious hours of running frantically around the house , blaming your self-and let’s face it-blaming almost everyone except yourself) .

#1:I think the instant solution has to be designating a special place for “stuff u use on daily basis and can’t loose”- such as those mentioned keys, house keys, other kinds of keys- mail, bike, etc, glasses, jewelry -if you take it off at night – phone, ipad, you get the drift.

but the mere designation isn’t enough you need to remember that no matter what the second these items are out of your hand/work bag-they go straight to their designated place and nowhere else.

#2: Another tip would be a quarterly “blitz tidying” of your bag- tote-shoulder bag , and drawers: both at work- and at home. you will be surprised to reunite with stuff u thought u lost a long time ago, plus that way your bag and drawers are not cluttered with unnecessary stuff and u know exactly what is in it- and what needs refilling or replacing. that way -when in a sudden storm your electricity shuts down-you’ll know where all the emergency stuff is, it’ll be in top condition and you won’t be running around looking for stuff-in the dark.that was an example of course. no need for a catastrophy to happen in order to enjoy a tidy place.

#3: This is a difficult one-I know. Try not to buy anything for a few months. excluding food and essential house hold stuff, of course. this will give u a chance to make sure u use all the extra’s you keep around the house, and when they are finished-well then you can be innovative!

hope you never misplace anything- cooliflower.

5 reasons to use a compost bin

#1 : just look at that. adding my own compost to my garden’s soil has done wonders to the garden.

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#2: reuse recycle reduce: what greater way is there to check on all 3 at once?

#3: time saver: having your own compost bin takes a monthly trip to the nursery off your to do list.

#4: money saver: see #3+ less trash=less garbage bags!

#5: since using the compost bin – my youngest child- in charge of taking out the trash- is delighted-no more heavy &dripping trash-70% of this is already in the compost bin.

  • my tip for composting is designate a small trash bin designated to be in your kitchen (the large bin is located in the garden) and when you peel-clean- drain pasta or bean water- just put it straight in the small bin.  from my experience compost needs watering anyway so using the small bin for liquids combined with coffee grounds , vegetable peels and leftovers is perfectly fine.

cooliflower.

 

How to survive as a lonely vegan among an omnivore family

Since I am the only vegan in my extended family, people sometimes wonder how i can buy&cook meat , chicken , eggs and dairy without trouble.

well I wouldn’t say it is the best case scenario but this is my family and i love them so.

just in case u think throwing tantrums and refusing to cook non vegan food or even making a fuss about letting these things into your home will help-well-no . it wont. it will be an endless source of foul jokes about you and your “trendy ideas” (and no it will not help to correct them with the actual facts or give futile lectures about the environment and clean eating and how they really should watch Gary yourofski and forks over knives.)

believe moi-been there-done that..

Now I will say it upfront so there is no misunderstanding if u r or want to become a vegan because of taste or other issues you have with non vegan foods and u r in fact revolted by meat or eggs for instance than this is not the tip for u in any way.

but many people turn vegan for ethical reasons and  not only are they not disgusted by meat etc’, but they really miss it and find that buying and cooking these foods for their family tempts them too much-just like any other restrictive diet .

I know this sounds harsh but I think we should face the truth veganism is a “diet” in the official definition of the word’ and let’s face it , it is restrictive.

So – if u fall to the category above you can definitely stand the smell and looks of non vegan foods, and u r even tempted by it how can u continue with your life as usual when living with an omnivore family?

If u happen to be the chef in your house hold, than i suggest you sit with yourself and decide where u draw the line and maybe no line needs to be drawn which is great .

I can tell u that for me personally cooking salmon-and steaks is something I couldn’t do , because baked salmon (with rosemary leaves and coarse salt ) was one of my favorite dishes. and medium well steaks .

After I decided that I don’t mind cooking everything except the 2 mentioned I told my family that business as usual, and then started with my plan. 

my plan was simple “if u can’t beat them tempt them”.

Since becoming vegan I gradually learned to prepare tasty vegan foods which are also super nutritious and whenever anyone is hungry there is a lovely choice of vegan food.

meat and dairy products are there too  – but since the vegan food is so tempting and new and different many times they find themselves opting vegan by choice-and not by force.

I make tons of salads, vegan burgers, grilled veggies, vegan ice cream, vegan buns and cakes- and the only milk in the house- again by choice- is soy milk- which means that smoothies and coffee -are vegan too.

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I believe that gradually I shall conquer them and they too will understand the multiple benefits of veganism and in the mean time we can live in peace and harmony which is important  too.

enjoy- the cooliflower.

 

 

 

 

they’re as cold as ice

anyone who makes smoothies and shakes on a regular basis knows that you need to consume it shortly after preparation’ otherwise you will witness a very unpleasant transformation occurring from yummy bright-colored food-into gray matter of some kind.

this is why you cannot make your shakes ahead for the week.

or can you?

I love my morning smoothies, do not have a blender at work, and since I spend some time at lunch time cutting my salads at work i happen to think fussing over breakfast as well  is a bit too much.

I decided to try to make my smoothies ahead and freeze them .

this is my process:

FROZEN BANANAS

 

freeze ripe bananas-even the really soft ones are fine for freezing though you need to understand that when you take them out of the freezer- no thawing is supposed to be involved , or else they will not resemble the bananas you used to know. they will be a mushy mess-so just use immediately as you take out of the freezer.

*I keep my freezer  bananas cut to halves , and before putting them in a zip-lock bag I lay them on parchment paper in the freezer for a few hours that way they don’t cling desperately to each other .

to 4  frozen  bananas I add a cup of  soy milk,  3 handfuls of spinach,  a handful or 2 of blueberries/chocolate powder depending what i feel like at that moment,  1 tbsp chia seeds, a handful of oatmeal , 2-3 medjhool dates and a cup or 2 of vega-one.

you can definitely make these smoothies without the vega one, and this not an add for them*(just reminding my disclaimer click the link to read it again-discla).

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I blend everything in my vitamix , if more liquid is necessary then i add cold water, and then i pour the blender’s content to 5 disposable coffee cups that have lids to match and off they go to the freezer-each work day i pack one of these n my cooler and after a an hour at work they are good to eat. i add 1-2 tbsp of grounded flax seeds -and voila.

enjoy! cooliflower.

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Being frugal : Learning to do my own nails

Why bother?

 

beans

 

  If you are one of those people-like me- that became vegan  not because you dislike the taste of meat –poultry –fish, but because of ethical reasons, than you might, like me, find yourself from time to time, missing that sensation of chewing on something , well, something meaty-there is no nicer way to say it.

Well I found out that these protein packed lovelies can give you than feeling. I also think that once you nail tofu draining and cooking-it can have somewhat of a similar effect, though these babies are so cheap, colorful, nutritious and easy to cook- well you get my drift.

There are many many kinds of beans and  out there-all beautiful and cheap, keep tons of time in the pantry, freeze well once cooked and can be used in so many ways..

Here is a picture of my jars – these are on my kitchen counter- not only because they are such beauties but also to make them accessible as possible, and so before I leave to work at 5 am – and suddenly feel like making a new batch of fried chickpeas or red beans stew- I can pour these from the jar to the cooking pot , cover with water (give them 10 cm of  extra water ) and let them wait for you to come back from work and cook them.

jars

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Now about cooking them- I simply change the soaking water (of course I save the soaking water  to water the plants- why not??) pour fresh water to cover and then some and put to boil. No salt or baking soda involved –no need in my opinion.

Some beans are quicker than the others- not all beans  were created the same- mong beans are way too quick for me personally, so when cooking them I am alert as a watch dog.

It’s a good idea to check on the beans every 10 minutes to see how they are doing and maybe they need company.

They usually get foamy at some stage, don’t worry just scoop the white foam to your kitchen compost bin and carry on with your life ,not before you steer the beans and check if they are ready, it should take about an hour –depends on the tipe of beans , on how old they were and how much time they  were soaked.

Once cooked –and I do hope you batch cooked because-why not? – let them cool and freeze them- unless you are about to use them right away, this is because ,well, they don’t like to be in the refrigerator so they fight back and get all gooey and smelly.

Freeze in portions you need for everyday use- so you can take them to work –to use as your bean/legume part in the three parts salad you make- or in stews like this one. (yes I know that these are brown lentils on top –the beans are under the vegetables- it’s your choice whether to believe me  or not.

stew

 

Thanks for joining- see u later- the cooliflower.

Disclaimer:  Please remember that this blog contains my personal thoughts .  I am not affiliated with anyone and do not get paid for writing content on this blog. i am not a medical/health/emotional/financial /nutrition or any other kind of expert as far as it concerns the contents of this blog ,  therefore anything written on the blog is not to be taken as any kind of advice, and should you choose to rely on anything  I write on this blog- you are doing it at your own risk-and at your own responsibility.I may manage/change the content on this blog .Please leave hatefull remarks out of this blog .  

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