Tuesday, September 24, 2013

my favorite mayo alternative recipes

can't get your hands on vegenaise?
fear not!

there are yummy (and easy!)
 alternatives for mayo lovers.

these are my two TOFU-FREE favorites!


  • organic haas avocado (a fairly big one)
  • juice of half of a lemon
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • pinch cayenne pepper (or more)
  • 1/4 c extra virgin olive oil (the good stuff)

cut avocado in half. scoop out the flesh and throw it into your food processor.
* add lemon juice, salt, and pepper and blendddddd!
*  with the motor whirring, drizzle olive oil slowly to the other ingredients. 
* stop, scrape, puree, repeat... you want a lovely smooth, creamy texture.
* eat on stuff!


  • organic haas avocado
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard (not the kind with the giant mustard seeds!)
  • fine sea salt to taste
  • 2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

cut avocado in half. scoop out the flesh and throw it into your food processor.

* add lemon juice, dijon, and sea salt to the food processor and puree.
* scrape as needed.
* puree until you have your desired texture.
* eattttttttttttttttt! (and eat some more)

can i get a break?!

it looks like my master cleanse posts are on hold.
  after the squirrel debacle, one of my family friends ended up in the hospital. 

 things just keep piling up! 

 i hope you guys will understand! 
 in the meantime, i will post some recipes.
 love yas!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Master Cleanse & a Squirrel

i had planned to document my experience every single day, but of course life gets in the way!

i started my morning master cleanse. i loaded up my lemonade with cayenne...
then i hear the most awful screeching sound i have ever heard in my life!

eeep! eeeep! eeeeeep!
one of our crazy cats somehow chased a baby squirrel into our dining room.
poor little guy.

he was more than grateful when we took him up into our arms and away from the cat.
he made the strangest purring noise!

we googled everything we possibly could about baby squirrels to make sure he was okay.
my cousin helped me look up animal rescues in the area as well.

he is so cute.
but we are so scared to keep him!

we plan on keeping him comfortable and fed for the week,
and taking him down to a rescue.

as for my cleanse, it will start tomorrow!
i didn't eat or have a more than my morning glass of lemonade because of all the excitement!


on that note, 
i am drinking my nightly senna tea now.
i prefer the peppermint flavor. 
the chocolate "smooth move" tea tastes like petrified goat ass,
 and the original is just o-k.

see you tomorrow!
have a great night! don't let the squirrels bite!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

master cleanse

has anyone ever gone through with it?

i have a few times, and it always makes me feel like a million bucks!
i usually try to do one before i start dieting-- 
seems to make the transitioning to a new lifestyle easier.

the master cleanse itself is NOT a diet.
it is a detox.
you will gain back about half of the weight you lose...
once again, DO NOT do this cleanse if you just want to lose weight.

but you will FEEL great afterwards, your SKIN will improve, 

and you will have a much easier time when you begin your ACTUAL diet. 

but why, you ask... why are you doing it? you don't even eat meat...


i have a multitude of physical ailments that effect my every day way of living.

i gained over 100 lbs when i was pregnant. HOLY COW, for real. 
my acne is out of control since the weight gain.

the weight gain is putting stress on my legs, which is horrible for my fibro.
no, i don't meat, but i am not exactly taking care of myself, either.

it is time to change that and jump start my lazy ass back into a healthier life.

for the next week (or two if i decide to do more than a week)
i will log my experiences with the cleanse. 

be prepared though, the descriptions of what i go through could be pretty graphic! 

now, the good stuff...
the recipe i am using for this particular cleanse is:

  • 2 tbsp freshly squeezed organic lemon juice 
  • 2 tbsp organic 100% maple syrup 
  • cayenne pepper to taste (yum) 
  • 1c filtered water


  • at night, drink a cup of senna tea.
  • in the morning, you can do a salt water flush. 
    i will be drinking more senna tea, however.

there are many different variations of the original cleanse, 
so feel free to google away for more information. 

see you guys tomorrow morning!

Thursday, September 12, 2013


i am going to be coming back full force soon.
i have been doing sooo much better and i can't wait to update the blog with new recipes and giveaways!

missed you!

all ad spaces are now FREE for the next month!

Monday, May 20, 2013

That dirty "D" word

It is time to talk about that ugly word that no one seems to want to hear about...


It is time to come clean with my blog audience.  I am a fairly new blog... no real "structure"... just an all-around good time full of recipes and reviews and rants.

Which is all fine and good, but I haven't been writing much lately.

You see those commercials with the people who are sad and lonely, but then they take a miracle drug and ALL IS BETTER?!  I seriously wish it were like that.

For those of us with chronic and severe cases of depression and anxiety, there is no insta-wonder drug.  There is a mix (or cocktail, if you please) that we have to find that keep us in check and on a seemingly level playing field. Combine that with therapy, and you can lead a pretty normal, albeit semi-complicated life.

Many people don't even believe that depression is a disease or even a long-term problem.  These are the ones who tell you to "lighten up" or "snap out of it" or "grow up, and get over it!"...you know what I mean.
For a lot of us who suffer from major depressive episodes, there is no magic light switch we can flick that will instantly erase our racing thoughts and make us joyful again. The smallest thing happens, and we sit there with that dirty little thought... and stew... and stew... and it turns over and turns over and gets coated with worry and frustration and sadness and it becomes this crazy pearl of an issue, so much bigger to us than it would be to a normal person.  You can see this in retrospect, but when it is happening, you can't think logically... you just know that something is gonna go wrong or IS wrong.  You feel helpless, sad... alone.

Because I moved to a new state recently, I have had to switch insurances, switch doctors, and start all over.  Back to square one.  I hate talking to new doctors... it literally scares the crap out of me. I have lost that familiarity and comfort I had with my old therapist and psychiatrist, and I have to muscle up and try to put my faith and trust into someone else... something that I find extremely difficult to do. I am scared facing people in general.  If I could, I would live in a hole, cut off from all communication except my computer, and hide forever.

But that isn't healthy.  Everyone knows this.

This move also means a break in my medication. It means NEW medications... new scenarios, new mixtures and doses.  New headaches and side effects... and my family is going to unfortunately going to feel the brunt of this mess.  It really isn't fair, I wish I could change it, but I am so lucky to have that support.

So, here goes! I hope you understand what is going on a little bit better, and will wait for me to get back on track.  This was not an easy entry for me-- I know how stigmatized depression and anxiety can be, but I wanted to be honest. I am trying.  I will come back soon. I can do this. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

SmartphoneDNA and a KINDLE FIRE HD Giveaway!

There is no doubt that Isabelle Thornton of Le Chateau des Fleurs is talented.  This French-girl-gone-Utah has a wildly popular blog full of interesting DIY posts, photography, giveaways, and great reviews.  Aside from being an awesome blogger, she also creates fun apps for phones.  Previously her "Make Me Skinny" or Bon Bon app has kept many entertained as they edited and adjusted photos on their iPhones, and now I'm excited to announce she's released an entirely new app!  This one is different, and for Android!

Let's face it, sometimes you spend more time with your smart phone than you do with your spouse, friends, coworkers, and family... You sleep with it, eat with it, and admit it-you take it to the bathroom with you!  With Smartphone DNA you are creating a new kind of experience with your Smartphone.

What is Smartphone DNA?  
Smartphone DNA is an app dedicated to Twitter users, and it allows you to collect your Twitter DNA via your Android phone, and then compare it against other twitter users to see how much you match!  This is a great way to locate new Twitter friends that have things in common with you! 

How it works:
  1. Smartphone DNA shows you a list of apps you currently have installed.
  2. You select the apps you want to share as part of your DNA
  3. Smartphone DNA shows you how closely you match the DNA of other users.

Smartphone DNA is 100% secure and controlled by you.

Win a Kindle Fire HD
To celebrate the release of Smartphone DNA, Isabelle is offering one lucky newsletter subscriber  a brand new Kindle Fire HD!  Can you say wow?  This is the reader of all readers-with a 7" full color HD display, exclusive Dolby audio, and ultra-fast WiFi it's top of the line.  Don't miss out on this opportunity to have one for yourself!  Follow the break to enter the giveaway:

Kindle Fire HD Giveaway Rules
Mandatory and Winning Entry will both be checked upon drawing the winner.
Open Worldwide to residents 18 and older. Void where prohibited by law.
Giveaway starts at 12AM on 4/10/13 and ends at 12AM on 4/30/13.
Winner will be chosen at random and will have 48 hours to reply or a new winner will be chosen.
Please read official Terms and Conditions in the Rafflecopter widget for full regulations.

(Subscribe to the newsletter at Le Chateau des Fleurs)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Kindle provided by Isabelle of Le Chateau des Fleurs*

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Giveaway Winner and a FREEBIE

(You  have 24 hours to get back to me before a new winner is chosen!)

I think the very first cookbook I ever purchased
was an old vegan cooking zine called 
Bark + Grass #2.

It is out of print now, but some awesome person has posted it online!
I thought you guys might get a kick out of these easy and fun recipes!

For example, my first go-to recipe for vegan brownies came from this zine:

Fudge Brownies

  •  Mix 1/3 cup flour with 1 cup water in a saucepan. 
    Cook until thick, then cool completely.
  •  Melt ½ cup margarine. Add 2/3 cup cocoa and stir until smooth. Cool.
  •  Beat 2 cups sucanat, ½ tsp salt and 1 tsp vanilla into the cooled flour mixture, then add the cocoa mixture
  •  Mix 1 ½ cups flour and 1 ½ tsp baking powder and add to everything else. Add chopped walnuts or 
    pecans if you want to. 
  • Bake in an oiled 9x13 pan at 350F for 20-25 minutes

Tuesday, April 2, 2013


Coming soon!

Isabelle from Le Chateau des Fleurs recently released a new Android app called Smartphone DNA, and to promote it she is giving away a Kindle Fire HD-which she is sponsoring entirely.  The giveaway will be hosted by My So-Called Chaos, and will be posted on a ton of blogs!  There will be TONS of ways to enter so get ready for this great chance to win an awesome product!
Make sure to come back on April 10th to enter!

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

you CAN raise a vegetarian child!

Kai Maximilian
Healthy and Happy!

I am raising my child vegetarian due to my own beliefs and experiences.
His father is a carnivore, but acknowledges the health benefits of vegetarianism.
We both agreed that this was the healthiest way to raise our son!

Kai receives well-balanced meals and L-O-V-E-S his veggies!
He is also very open to trying to things and experiencing new flavors!

It seems as if the common misconception is that
all vegetarian parents feed their kids nothing but grass and hay.
Vegetarian kids aren't horses!

Protein seems to be the biggest argument for not going vegetarian.
Protein is actually rarely an issue in vegetarian diets.  
Vegetarian parents tend to worry and overcompensate
and feed their children foods that may be TOO high in calories and fat.

Other sources of worry I constantly hear about are Iron and Calcium--
BOTH of these can be had from meatless sources-- it takes a little research!

By providing well-balanced meals and snacks, you can make sure that
your child has all the vitamins and minerals they need
to be a happy, healthy, and amazing child!

Some great foods high in nutrients for vegetarian children are:

TofuTofu Kale
Tempeh Spinach & Kale Fortified Soy Milk
Seitan Black Beans Fortified Nut Milk
Chickpeas Figs Hemp Milk
Mushrooms Raisins Tempeh
Nut Milk Fortified Cereal Tahini & Hummus
Soy Milk Chickpeas Fortified Juice
Nut & Seed Butter Broccoli Great Northern Beans
Beans & Lentils Bok Choy Almond Butter
Hemp Lentils Bok Choy
Avocados Pumpkin Seeds Tofu
Yogurt Quinoa Wakame
Eggs Blackstrap Molasses Tempeh
Whole Grains Swiss Chard Yogurt

grow your blog, and participate in a KICK ASS giveaway!

If you're looking to grow your blog or social media following, we have a great and FREE opportunity for you!  Free is good, right?  Well, Free is AMAZING!

Isabelle from Le Chateau des Fleurs recently released a new Android app called Smartphone DNA, and to promote it she is giving away a Kindle Fire HD-which she is sponsoring entirely.  The giveaway will be hosted by My So-Called Chaos, but what we need are other bloggers to share the giveaway on their blogs in order to spread the word! In return, you'll get two of your links in the Rafflecopter to get extra promotion for you in return for posting.  This is entirely free, there is NO buy in, we just need two posts from you.
  1. Post this announcement on your blog (code will be given after you request to join) to ensure your readers/followers have the opportunity to be a part of this giveaway too! 
  2. Post the actual giveaway (full Rafflecopter and all! People will be able to enter directly from your blog!) 
If you are interested in participating in this FREE promotional opportunity, please email Miss Angie and once accepted into the giveaway you will be given all the information you need for your posts.

Giveaway is set to run from 4/10/13 to 4/30/13.
All requests to join required by 4/5/13!

Our DIY Nail Polish Rack Fun Night

My cousin and I kept tossing around the idea of making nail polish racks for our growing collections.
We found this awesome tutorial on the web,
and decided to make a go for it!

We bought pre-cut hobby boards
 at the local Lowe's.
I think we bought pine,
but there were other boards
to choose from.
We just wanted something economical!
We also purchased Gorilla Glue, screws, drill bits,
screw bits, anchors, and duct tape 
(yes, duct tape--you'll see!)
for our project!

How did  we know what sized boards to buy?
Well true to the blog name, we didn't measure--
we just eye-balled it and
brought along our tallest bottles
to gauge the spaces
we wanted between the shelves.

We also asked one of the salespersons
for their "expert" opinion, 
but I think they thought we were crazy
for wanting to make eight-shelf racks
for just bottles of polish!

The spouse decided to help us
with the power tools--
but we were very firm
on making them to our specifications!

Friday, the cat, supervised from her usually spot
as we lined-up our boards.
We turned on some Descendents, Box Car Racer,
and some delicious golden oldies

and drank copious amounts of beer...
...and then some.

Once the frame was complete,
we decided to color our shelves--
somewhat unconventionally!
(Ignore the other stuff in my apartment!
We still have stuff to unpack and build from the move!)

Because I have 140+ bottles of polish, 
I decided to "tier" the bottom three shelves.
We bought some extra boards
that were half the size of the shelf boards
to make a "step" in order to hold more bottles.

 I kept them in place with gorilla glue and duct tape.

Speaking of duct tape,
I decided to cover all of my shelves
in my fabulous leopard print tape!
The frame was covered in plain black duct tape,
and i marked the shelf distance
with a white nail polish pen.

We drilled, glued, and screwed
the shelves to the frame!

Because the fronts of tiered shelves
were skinnier due to the step,
I put my smaller bottles
and favorite indie polishes
on my bottom shelves!

The tops of the tiered shelves
still housed regular sized polishes!

It was so nice to be organized!
(No more shoe boxes!)

Last, but not least,
We mounted the shelf with the anchors and extra screws!
What a fun night!

Monday, March 25, 2013


I have been eyeballing this cookbook for quite a while.

All of you wonderful readers have told me that you would love a cookbook giveaway, 
so I thought this would be the perfect opportunity!
I will purchase the cookbook for myself and another copy for someone else-- 
We can experience it together!

Written by vegan cookbook superstar Bryanna Clark Grogan,
I think this book will be absolutely delightful, and I cannot wait!

Check out some of these recipe titles!

Looks A-M-A-Z-I-N-G !
Yummmmy Yum Yum.

Enter below!

Friday, March 22, 2013

fibromyalgia and plant-based diets

this is a pretty interesting video!
as you may or may not know, 
i was diagnosed with fibromyalgia after almost a decade of misdiagnoses.
a plant-based diet can cause significant improvements in fibromyalgia pain management.
check it out!

Thursday, March 21, 2013


wanna post an ad on my blog?!

i am now a member of the passionfruit ad possee!

i will be accepting orders for ads a.s.a.p.!

they will appear on my left sidebar and stay for a whole month!

ad-buyers can participate in my giveaways, and may be featured in a blog post if they so choose!

 40% off for a limited time if you use code TOXIE.

use code SWAP
for any size ad you wish!

i cut it all off

springtime is time for change, right?
so i decided to hack off my long hair.
last night, i walked into a random salon, 
and $55 later, this is the end result.

what are new things are you doing for spring?

Monday, March 18, 2013

restaurant review : ruby's brinton lake

Ruby's Diner, Brinton Lake - website - Vf
919 Baltimore Pike 
Glen Mills, PA 19342
Sun-Thurs: 7am-9pm, Fri-Sat: 7am-10pm 

Horrible... Waiters need less hormones and be more service-oriented... We were the only table of his NOT filled with giggling high school girls. He must have checked on his other tables about five times, but we never even got a drink refill! My food (and my sister's) came out horribly cooked, and we couldn't even get his attention to send it back! Luckily, my sister has some pretty big balls and got another member of the waitstaff to summon a manager. Oh boy, did she let them have it!

Ambiance: This is probably the only place where they get high marks... The interior is pretty rad.  It is like walking straight into a 1950's diner, complete with the kitschy waitress dresses and little white aprons.  Everything is bright and white and silver and shiny! There is a train choo-chooing along a track, old timey coke signs-- it is a lot of fun to take in!

i took this photo from google -
i was too angry to even think about taking photos that night!

Food: We have mixed things to say about their food.  My veggie burger was HORRIBLE. It was as hard as a rock. I wanted to send it back, but we never got the server's attention. I never had my glass refilled.  My son's grilled cheese was more like a cold cheese sandwich. Corey had a regular hamburger, and said it was alright, but he really liked his milkshake.  My sister Kelly, had a chicken wrap that tasted like it had been under a light bulb for 60 years. This was not a good first impression. I wish I could say that the place was totally packed and maybe we came at a bad time, but there were still plenty of open tables and there were a lot of servers... our was just M.I.A.

As for the menu in general, there are lots of vegetarian options-- sweet potato fries, breaded zucchini, veggies tacos, portobello sandwich-- but I honestly do not think I am willing to go back back and try them... sorry guys!

Pros: It has cool decorations? Apologetic managers?

Cons: If you want to be ignored and be served sub-par food, this place is for you.

Bottom Line: To quote Less Than Jake, "I'm feeling like I'm never going back, no I'm never going back, no... and I'm feeling like I'm never going back again, never going back again!" 

Reviewer(s): Maria, Corey, Kelly, Kai
Price: $$


restaurant key:
Vn     vegan - no animal products
Vg     vegetarian - contains dairy and/or eggs
Vf      veg-friendly -  veg options may be offered or requested

price key:
      treat a friend and yourself!
$$     split the bill.
$$$    ask mom for food money.
$$$$  ouch! you may not be able to buy junior that xmas present.

restaurant review - Big Sky Bread Co.

Big Sky Bread Co. - website - Vf
1812 Marsh Rd, #9
Branmar Plaza
Wilmington, DE 19810
(302) 475-9494
Tue-Fri: 8am-6:30pm | Sat: 7am-3pm | Closed Sun-Mon

Friendly, Helpful, and Patient!

Cozy. Looks like your typical bread bakery with giant loaves and piles of baguettes on shelving.
There is a little area in the front where you can sit and read and munch on your goodies.  It is a comfortable, casual place.

INSIDE!  - picture from urbanspoon.com

Food: They serve mostly lunchy foods.

Check out their soup of the day selection!

Corey, the Carni, ordered a large chicken salad sandwich on a french baguette and some coconut curry chicken soup.  I, Maria the Veghead, ordered the small vegetarian sandwich on multigrain with some vegetarian chili.

Corey's sandwich was HUGE.  It was stuffed full of large chunks of chicken salad.  His bread was fresh and chewy and delicious, just as a french baguette should be.  He loved the soup, but was so full after his enormous sandwich, he couldn't finish it all!

My chili was the bee's knees. wow. It was chock full of beans, hearty, and thick-- my kinda chili!  My veggie sandwich was delicious! I got to pick out five veggies I wanted from a list, so I didn't have to worry about picking out anything I didn't like.  It was a pretty fantastic lunch!

Pros: The large sandwiches are pretty big and yummy. The soup of the day selection is usually a pretty diverse list. I love that you have a bunch of different breads to choose from when you order! The biggest plus about this place is how damn friendly everyone is! 

Cons: I wish there were a few more vegan sandwich options, but you can always change up which veggies you pick on your sandwich!

Bottom Line: We will definitely be back!

Reviewer(s): Maria, Corey
Price: $


restaurant key:
Vn     vegan - no animal products
Vg     vegetarian - contains dairy and/or eggs
Vf      veg-friendly -  veg options may be offered or requested

price key:
      treat a friend and yourself!
$$     split the bill.
$$$    ask mom for food money.
$$$$  ouch! you may not be able to buy junior that xmas present.

Sunday, March 17, 2013


you MUST check out this fabulous giveaway i am taking part in 

amazing right?!
besides the makeup palette from me, 
you could win ad space, a gorgeous bag, gift cards... 
omg so many things!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Saturday Challenge

it is time for another saturday challenge from artsy anthropology!

Artsy Anthropology

1. Say something nice about 2 different people that you've met through blogging, shop ownership, social media, etc.
emily from artallnight: what a super nice and incredibly creative girl! she is a doll and a half! i own several of her jewelry pieces and i plan on owning several more-- they are so fun and vibrant and gorgeous! 

superrrrrrrrr awesome guy helps me with my spanish translations when i need them.. haha! no really, he is a pretty awesome friend, and i am lucky to have met him!

2. Do something nice for a complete stranger.
i have been mad sick and haven't been out of the building. =[

3. Do something nice for someone you know.
i cooked dinner for my sister and my boyfriend!

4. Say something good about yourself.
i look damn sexy with a cold... ha. just kidding. uhm! i make good cakes!

5. What are you thankful for this week? (Doesn't have to be big or profound)
i am thankful to be fully moved out of my old apartment and to have my security deposit back haha.

6. Treat yourself to something - a bubble bath, a coffee without distractions, something - just take time out for you.  What did you do for yourself?
chamomile tea in bed... ahhhh.

7. What was the highlight of your week?  Share it with us!
working on my homemade nail polish rack!