Mmm, exams.

I’ve got my first final tomorrow of the exam period.  Surprisingly, I’ve kept up with my study schedule (aka learn half of the term’s new materials in a couple of days in December) so far, so I should be okay.

Okay, considering that I’ve pulled all-nighters two out of the past three nights.  Before I pulled my first all-nighter out of my arse last spring, I would never have thought that I would be the type to pull those off.  Never.  I’m way to “A” type for that stuff, I thought.

But – hah! – I was so wrong (or perhaps so right), because it was preciously my strung-out, high-wired personality that enabled me to power my way through the night – bathed only in a soft glow of my desk light – and, eventually, through the rest of the second day.  Oh yes, the first time I pulled an “all-nighter” was brutal; it was all I could do to make my way to my class to hand in a paper, before collapsing on the ride home.  At maybe 10 in the morning.

Of course, I got better at it.  Hell, I don’t even need to nap (sometimes).  (I admit, I dozed off face first on top of my covers for an hour in the morning today.)

I’m going to hit the sheets early tonight.   Gotta final to write tomorrow after all!  (But not too stressed about this one; it’ll be all multiple-choice, which wins in my book because the possibility of having a minor case of writer’s block/anxiety is eliminated!)  Still have a 5:00pm hockey game to watch though.

I was finally proactive in making positive choices today.  I finally kicked myself out of the house and went for a walk.  Phew – I think I feel better already?  I would like to see myself taking all the little steps to get out of this ugly ugly fog I’ve been wandering in.  Not sure if I’d ever really “got out”, but I think I’ve been in the less densely foggy areas at moments throughout the recent years (hell, probably just earlier this year!  Before damn school term started of course), and I’d bet a hundred bucks that those where the times when I felt less shitty.  Little steps, baby.  Little steps.

(Also, I am going to work towards not cancelling out a positive choice I made today by telling myself that I had also made a negative choice.  That’s not fair to all the good work I’m putting towards pulling my shit together.  Guess I have to recognize that.  Every choice is a new one!  I’m starting fresh with every decision I make.)

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University Food

This is what I ate today:

It cost only $1.75.  It was part of a quickie lunch in between holed-up-in-library studying/researching sessions.  It was good enough for me.  Right now, I truly have no life beyond my books and research.

Need help deciding on a sociological survey research topic!  One that “sells”, at least to my professor, who certainly has her finger on the “hot” pulse…Right now, I’m thinking of something to do with Media Stigmatization & Female Body Abuse; or Divorce & Children’s Self-Esteem.  The first one sounds “hotter”, so that is why there is a big whack of books on body/gender/consumption/stigma right by my side, waiting for me to finish this post and get crackin’.  Don’t let me change my mind – again!

(The most indecisive person)

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26 Vegan Questions Answered

If there was one word to describe the last few days, it would be: crippled.

I am eagerly looking forward to the end of the semester!

There is no way I am going to be cooking anything nice and pretty for a while.  Lucky for me, I still live at home, so I have the privilege of being cooked a hot nutritious meal every night.  Not really going to whip out a camera for that though.  Okay, maybe next time, and y’all can get a look at what yummy Chinese dishes I get to eat.

For now, I’m filling out the survey that’s been passed around the VeganMoFo circle the past few days.  Credit goes to Whoa Wren for starting it off:

1. Favorite non-dairy milk?
Almond Breeze Unsweetened Original.

2. What are the top 3 dishes/recipes you are planning to cook?
Oy.  I sort of want to bake a birthday cake for myself at the end of the month.  Otherwise, I want to finally make the Tofu Omelets from Vegan Brunch, and (though not a new recipe or dish) I need to make cornbread.  It’s not fall without cornbread (and chili).

3. Topping of choice for popcorn?
I haven’t eaten popcorn since my pregan days!  I would choose EB and salt, I guess.  I really want to try nooch and cayenne.  Maybe cinnamon…would that be weird?

4. Most disastrous recipe/meal failure?
Not completely disastrous, but I bought the wrong kind of tamarind for the Tamarind Lentils recipe in Veganomicon.  It didn’t taste bad, but I think it was supposed to taste a lot better!

5. Favorite pickled item?
Pickled cucumbers aka pickles!

6. How do you organize your recipes?
I keep a binder of Internet and magazine recipes right by my cookbooks.  And a bunch of tiny scraps of paper tucked into the inside sleeve of said binder.  I also have a file on the computer for recipes, organized into the category “Recipes” and subcategory “Sweets”.

7. Compost, trash, or garbage disposal?
Trash.  I would love to get my parents in on composting.

8. If you were stranded on an island and could only bring 3 foods…what would they be (don’t worry about how you’ll cook them)?
Bananas, Kabocha squash, and Durian

9. Fondest food memory from your childhood?
Making carrot muffins with my mom.

10. Favorite vegan ice cream?
Living Harvest’s Tempt Chocolate Fudge Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert

11. Most loved kitchen appliance?
I love my processor for blending nuts and tofu into the most delicious things, like cashew ricotta or quiche filling.

12. Spice/herb you would die without?
Basil.  I don’t have it often, but I lurrve it!

13. Cookbook you have owned for the longest time?
My first cookbook: Vegan Vittles!

14. Favorite flavor of jam/jelly?
Homemade plum, for sure.

15. Favorite vegan recipe to serve to an omni friend?
Cake with a ton of frosting, of course!

16. Seitan, tofu, or tempeh?
Tofu.

17. Favorite meal to cook (or time of day to cook)?
I am completely devoted to breakfast.

18. What is sitting on top of your refrigerator?
I’m not sure and I’m too lazy to check.

19. Name 3 items in your freezer without looking.
Black bean burgers, strawberries, and bread.

20. What’s on your grocery list?
Nothing at the moment.  I just bought 3 jars of Maranatha Peanut Butter and 9 cartons of Almond Breeze last week at a reaaally good price.  (I just really needed somewhere to brag about that!)

21. Favorite grocery store?
Choices and Whole Foods

22. Name a recipe you’d love to veganize, but haven’t yet.
Cocktail buns!

23. Food blog you read the most (besides Isa’s because I know you check it everyday). Or maybe the top 3?
Vegan-wise: Another One Bites the Crust, Vegan Eats & Treats, Chocolate Covered Katie

24. Favorite vegan candy/chocolate?
I really liked Denman’s Island’s chocolate bars.

25. Most extravagant food item purchased lately?
It’s not so recent, but I bought a rather expensive jar of Artisana Cacao Bliss.  Unfortunately, I realized that my tastebuds cannot handle the extravagant concentration of coconut butter and oil.

26. Ingredients you are scared to work with?
Saffron, because it’ll be expensive if I mess it up!

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Sweet, sweet October

Can you believe it’s October already?  I can’t!  I honestly can’t remember the last time a month went by so quickly.  Time was definitely going in slow-mo when I was working, and even when I was working and going to school last spring.  Now that my mindless 9-month stint as a grocery store cashier is over, and with school back in session, time has freaking wings!

October brings:

  • Rain & umbrellas (not awesome)
  • Boots & scarves (awesome)
  • Beautifully coloured leaves and puddles (awesome)
  • My birthday (rather awesome)
  • The start of hockey season (what do you freaking think?!  <3)
  • VeganMoFo (do I need to tell you…awesome!)

It’s been almost 2 years and 5 months since I made the veggie leap, and I’ve never felt better.  This will sound cliche, and I hate to start off VeganMoFo (and my blog, sort of, anyway) sounding cliche, but: it saved my life.  Or at least my sanity.  They are very similar…

As always, October is also one of the busiest months of the year, with my classes really getting underway, and as midterms, papers, and presentations loom larger in the horizon.  Sometimes all I feel like I do is eat, sleep, and study!  So, forgive me for not presenting superbly presented gourmet meals for VeganMoFo, and for not posting until 10 pm PST.

To kick off the next 31 days, and in the spirit of no-time-I-need-to-watch-my-Canucks-play-their-first-game-of-the-season-study, I thought I’d share with you my favourite no-frills vegan (no animal product) food at the moment.  It’s really thrilling; here’s the recipe:

  1. Wash a large sweet potato.  Pat it dry.  Pierce it several times with a fork.
  2. Microwave for 5 minutes.
  3. Use the fork to pry open the skin on the side that you want to eat from.  (Oh, the sweet potato should be easily stabbed all the way through; if not, it’s not cooked yet.)  Use the tines of the fork to mash it up a bit.\
  4. Sprinkle on some cinnamon to your taste.  Mash some more.
  5. Eat.  Enjoy.

Thrilling, right?  All I needed was a picture to complete this.

Seriously, sweet potatoes are not only nutritious – you can get your fill of complex carbohydrates, dietary fibre, beta carotene, Vitamin A, and Vitamin B6; they are smooth, creamy, perfect for colder days, and fill you with warm fuzzy feelings that conjure up images not unlike puppies, and kittens, and bunny slippers.  Perfect.

What does October mean to you?

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Upcoming: VeganMoFo III

This late-night post is coming to you in anticipation of an upcoming event:

Thats right mofos

That's right, mofos!

VeganMoFo 2009.  I participated last year, not with this blog, but with another that has been lost in the oblivion of cyberspace.  Already in it’s third year, VeganMoFo was first organized by Isa Chandra Moskowitz of vegan cookbook fame (Vegan With A Vengeance, Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, Veganomicon, Vegan Brunch) and of The Post Punk Kitchen.  This year, Kittee of the blog Cake Maker to the Stars is organizing the huge compilation of vegan-talking blogs around the world.

Look forward to some happy mofoing!

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