Tuesday 31 January 2017

January Life


I'm not going to sugar coat anything in this post, January has been tough. It's actually been tougher than I thought it would be. I usually expect to feel more low than usual in the first month of the year because it always without fail feels like a major come down after all the business and excitement of December. I would have hoped to have re-found my mojo by now but I sadly haven't. I've felt pretty flat for the most of January and unable to get back into the swing of my usual routine. My motivation levels have felt really low but I have somehow managed to fight that off by regular trips to the gym. I'm hoping this is just a phase and that soon enough i'll be back to my usual self. We shall see...


Thursday 26 January 2017

Norwich 2017

This week we decided to pack an overnight bag and head off an hour and a half north into Norfolk and the city of Norwich. I decided a while ago that I needed to visit Norwich and I was really surprised that i'd never visited before, especially since I had friends who went there to Uni many years ago. I'd also heard that it was meant to be pretty good for shopping and vegan food so it seemed like the perfect place to visit for a mini over night get away. 

Tuesday 24 January 2017

The Vegan Rainbow Bowl

Over the past month one of my favourite things to eat has been what I like to refer to as 'The Vegan Rainbow Bowl' (i'm not sure if this is the right name for it but it's one that makes the most sense to me!). I'm also probably extremely late to the party on this one but in any case, keep reading...

When I have been out and about I have really noticed that these kind of 'bowl' type meals have become evermore popular, particularly when it comes to plant based food. I have in the past enjoyed a variety of different bowls from a 'Buddha Bowl' to a "Soul Bowl', and i'm pretty sure at some point, somewhere,  I did eat a 'Rainbow Bowl'.

Since attempting to get back on track with some form of healthy eating this month I have found that a 'bowl' dinner is the quickest and easiest food for me to eat which ensures that I get a hit of vitamins and it keeps me on track with healthy eating. It has fast become my favourite way to enjoy what I am eating without feeling that I am missing out of anything.

So what are the rules of the 'bowl'? 

Well, there are no rules! Other than keeping it completely cruelty free of course (no animal based ingredients whatsoever). The easiest way to describe it is - a bit of everything you like thrown into a bowl together. Et voila! 

What should I add to my 'bowl'?

That is completely up to you and your own personal tastes! I can however let you in on some of my own personal favourite foods to enjoy in the bowl and the various categories I tend to take food from. 

Salad - I always add a bit of salad to my bowl whether it be some chopped cucumber, beetroot, spiralised carrot, spinach or lettuce. The opportunities are really endless and it's up to you to decide what you prefer or what goes best with your other items - but remember that anything goes!

Pulses - Us vegans need to ensure we're keeping up our protein and iron intake and I find that pulses, particularly beans and lentils, are the best way to do this. They're also a food that I love to eat! My favourites that always tend to be on hand to add to my 'bowl' are chickpeas, broad beans, kidney beans or even those super cheap and easy tins of mixed beans you can get at the supermarket. 

Grain type foods - Things like quinoa, buckwheat, pearl barley, couscous and wheat berries seem to work amazingly well in these kind of dinners and it makes it even easier now that there's a wide range of microwaveable bags available of single or mixed versions. So yummy, so filling and so right! 

Carbs - Sometimes my bowls do feel like they are carbs on top of carbs, but as we now know there isn't really anything wrong with that, as long as you have some other things going on in the 'bowl'. One of my favourites has to be brown/wholemeal rice or small roasted chunks of sweet potato. If you are perhaps going for a more oriental themed bowl then you may choose to have noodles instead. 

Something of substance - I tend to go for falafel as my main source of substance within the 'bowl' but it could be that something like tofu or some vegan sausages take your fancy. Sometimes I might put a nut cutlet in the oven and then mash it up into my bowl. If you don't have some substance it can end up feeling just like a salad. 

Something moist -  My fail safe tends to be hummus as it just seems to work so well with everything else I enjoy. If i'm going for more of an Asian type bowl though I will normally add soy sauce or perhaps a suitable stir fry sauce. 

Healthy fat - Avocado! Need I say more!? A bowl without some avocado is never really as enjoyable as a bowl with. However, nuts are also a great option!

I think the most important thing to remember when making up a vegan 'rainbow bowl' is that you get it to be as colourful, wholesome and delicious as you can. Every bowl I make tends to turn out differently and I think that's another reason why I love them so much - they keep things varied! You're also eating predominantly unprocessed whole plant based foods which is good for you, the animals and the planet. 

Maybe I should start calling them 'Love Bowls' instead because I really do love them! 

If you feel inspired to start making your own rainbow bowls be sure to tweet me a photo so that I can admire your creations!   

Thursday 19 January 2017

New Year, New Skincare

What better way to kick off a new year than to shake up your current skincare regime!? 


Tuesday 17 January 2017

A Hug In A Box by BuddyBox

Back in December I predicted that January would be a time when I would need to practice a little more self care and I may be feeling a little flatter than usual. I knew that I would probably be suffering from a post Christmas come down and, after being so busy for so many weeks, things were due to slow down to a near halt.


Thursday 12 January 2017

Chewton Glen - The Treehouses

Back in December I celebrated my 34th Birthday, and I use the word 'celebrated' loosely as since passing the 30 years mark each birthday reminds me that I am steam rolling towards 40 and middle age. But age is of course just a number and, despite being a 30 plus blogger, I am still twenty something in my mind with few commitments and a passion for exploring. 


Tuesday 10 January 2017

The Faux Fur Debate

Last week I read a brilliant post by fellow cruelty free and vegan blogger Nadia from Not So Quiet Grrl which asked the question Should Vegans Wear Faux Fur? Nadia's post touched on so many issues and arguments that have crossed my mind over the past few months and reminded me of a personal internal battle that I struggle with at times when it comes to buying faux fur. I therefore thought I may as well throw my two cents into the blogosphere!

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