Monday, February 28, 2011

Home Made Protein Bar

A friend of mine had a birthday this past week and I was invited to dinner to celebrate. He said he checked the online menu and there were at least a few vegetarian options. I soon found out it was basically a "House of Meat" Eastern European style! (did you want a side of meat with your meat?)

These are some of the barriers that I come across knowing so many meat eaters. Any occasion can turn into a hassle with me either having to eat before I meet up, eating only sides that don't fill me up or give me nutrition or suffering through and eating waaaay too late when I get home.

This time, I opted for the "house salad" which actually ended up being almost a full cucumber and a tomato with a roasted red pepper with some kind of vinaigrette dressing. IT WAS SO YUMMY! I got some rice on the side as well. I can't say I got all my nutrients out of the meal, but I was full.

I always carry almonds and a homemade protein bar in my bag for such occasions. I don't think I would make it through most dinners if I didn't ;)

The protein bar that I eat is a variation of Brendan Braziers. Using his Vega cuts down on a lot of excess ingredients as well.

1 cup fresh dried dates (or you can soak them for a couple hours to make them softer)
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup cocoa
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup ground flax seeds
1/4 cup hemp hearts
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
2 scoops of Vega mix

I don't have a food processor (gasp!) so I do all the chopping by hand. I actually like doing this manually as it relaxes me and I can either watch tv or talk on the phone while doing it. I guess it's a little like people who are relaxed by knitting (which I am not! - I'm such a BAD knitter!)

Finely chop the dates, almonds and any other nuts into little pieces. I don't soak my dates as they seem to mush when I'm mixing anyway, but if you aren't into taking your time it would be worth it to pre-soak.

In a coffee grinder, grind your flax seeds, chia seeds and hemp hearts. (Almonds would be harder, so I just chop them myself)

Mix everything else together but the blueberries, leave them till the end....mush factor ;). Once everything is a wonderful semi stiff blob, form either into balls or what I do is I flatten it our and cut into 1" by 2" rectangles. Store in the fridge or freezer!

I have mine for a few weeks, but they kind of loose their freshness after about a week and a half.

Here is the video with the one and only Brendan Braizer making his version!

Brendan Brazier

Let me know if you try it or have your own recipe! I'd love to try different variations!

Friday, February 25, 2011

aaaaaand done!

I am finally done with my old apartment. I met with my old landlord and had a quick (very quick) inspection and handed over the keys.

I was quite stressed about this inspection as my old landlord and I haven't been on the best terms lately. We had a mis-communication last spring and it hadn't been the same since.

I like to pride myself in being the perfect tenant, but I guess I tainted that when I had a leak in my bathroom and asked my landlord to have a look. He eventually came and looked and had to call a plumber to fix it. The knobs to the taps were stripped and I thought that was the main problem, but it turns out it was the actual tap fixture and the plumber just need to go in and tighten a few things.

Sounds simple...maybe half an hours work, but when the plumber finally arrived, my landlord didn't know where to turn off the water, so he called me at work....3 times. I was in meetings that day and didn't answer my phone, so my landlord and the plumber waited for me to call back.. um, that would be expensive, don't you think?

I eventually got out of my meetings that afternoon and called back and I was kind of short with him since he is the landlord and he should know these things....I had no idea where the shut off valve was! He sent the plumber away and went to call the previous owners to see if they knew where it was. (sigh)

Eventually two days later they figured out where the valve was and fixed the taps, but put the old stripped knobs back on. When I got home all I wanted was a bath, but the knobs just kept turning! I was LIVID. I guess I had had a bad day or something, so I wrote him an angry email that he needed to replace the knobs as well. This is where the mis-communication happened. He thought I was accusing him of not fixing anything.

Anyway, we got it sorted that I mean, I went to the hardware store and did it myself. Since then he can't even look me in the eye. He was SO mad that every time I see him he talks to his shoulder or to the wall. Weird.

So back to handing in the keys...I thought he was going to rake me across the coals, but he did a quick look around, signed a cheque and basically shoved me out the door! Ha! I ran to the bank and cashed the cheque immediately! I wasn't going to give him the chance of finding something wrong with the blinds being broken or the hardwood floor being scratched..or...or (a-hem) perfect tenant!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The first post is the deepest?

(*EDIT - this is a pre-merge post ;)

I feel like I might have hyped myself up a bit for posting. I have been thinking carefully about this blog for so long that I forgot about the actual "Post" part of it!

Hey there! I'm Heddy. As you have read in my 'about me' page, I am a vegan and yes my dad is in fact a butcher. I've always had something I "couldn't" eat (or chose not to) so this venture really doesn't come as much of a surprise to my family. Before I was diagnosed with hypothyroid I thought I was either lactose intolerant or had celiac disease. They are two of the MANY symptoms that come along with the it a disease? Hmm, I don't actually know.

Anyway, I have been vegan for a year and I am loving it! I try to pass my wisdom on to people (mostly at my office) and I tend to get the "there there" look...kind of like a hypochondriac would get every time they complain to their doctor. The most frustrating part of knowledge ... any knowledge, is having it and not being able to share it. Especially when you see your friends and acquaintances suffering (burping, farting, headaches, joint pain, heart burn, over weight, low energy) and they don't want to hear about your "hippy" ways. Even if it might help them.

Anyway, I'm not here to get on a soapbox...I really hope I don't come across that way. I'm just here to actually document my trials as a vegan and will probably vent from time to time!

I do hope if you stumble across my blog you sign in and say hello...I know I have one reader! Thanks Nanny!


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The move!

Ok, I have my brain back... well, sort of. The move went better than I expected. The movers were EXCEPTIONAL. They came highly recommended to me and I'm glad I didn't rely on quickly disappearing friends. Why do people disappear when their friends move? It can be a "I'll scratch your back if you scratch mine" kind of thing! *sigh*

Anyway, the move took a little over 3 hours and the only hiccup was my big couch wouldn't fit past the railing. With a quick phone call to my new landlord, the movers had taken the railing down and the couch was safely inside (and not at the dump, which I had feared would have to happen).

That night I didn't unpack much, just the essentials and Munch and I tried to settle down for a long awaited sleep, but being in a new place with new sounds proved to be hard on both of us. Munch (who had stayed under the covers most of the day) decided that it was at least safe enough to explore since he couldn't hear anyone above us. He did this at 3am... rustle rustle rustle... Needless to say, I didn't get much sleep and decided to get up and go to the old apartment to clean it.

It took most of the afternoon, but I had taken Monday off from work to recoup and I was SO glad I did as Sunday night was much the same as the first night. Rustle rustle rustle... what time is it? *sigh*

Since I took Monday off, I thought I could relax and slowly unpack, but the guilt of not being at work took over (it happens in the entertainment business, need to be working, thinking about working or not sleeping because you should be working or thinking about working) so I tried extra hard to make the day away from work count. I knew my packing the week before would be the bane of my existence and sure enough, that has been the worst part of my move! Remember my packing tip? Ya, don't do that...take time to be organized. Trust me!

Although I have felt a bit under the gun to get the unpacking complete (giving my boxes to other friends that are moving) I can finally say that the hectic part of it is FINALLY over! I can almost see the light!

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Friday, February 18, 2011

New packing method

I move tomorrow...oh my goodness, I MOVE TOMORROW! *sigh*

I still have a poop load of stuff to do, but my new packing method will make it so much easier...are you interested in hearing what it is?

I prepare the box, tape the bottom, open the drawer (closet, cabinet etc), and dump everything in. DONE! This will come in extra handy since I have a friend coming tomorrow at 9am with coffee and the movers will be there at 10a. So if I dump everything in boxes tape it up and start to clean, I can have a semi peaceful sleep of probably hmmmmm 4 hours before the chaos starts!

I can't wait til the post about unpacking!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I survived..

Well, I survived the weekend. My Grandfather's funeral was very nice. I cried...a lot. I'm actually glad past chapter was there. His sleeve made a nice tissue when I was walking to my seat in the front few pews.

My Uncle read the eulogy and my mother wrote an incredible poem. They both did an amazing job. The flowers that filled the room were so beautiful and vibrant. I was going to say I can't believe how many people were there, but actually I can. My Grandfather touched a lot of lives, right down to his last days. Everyone loved him. I can only wish I follow his example..

The drive there and back were less dramatic than I anticipated. PC and I were buddies discussing life, parents, grandparents, friends, work and love. It was truly great. Wow, someone was definitely shining down on us those days. I guess 10 hours each way wasn't a biggie after all!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Keep calm and carry on

This will be my new mantra for this following weekend! I am being driven to my grandfather's funeral by my ex-boyfriend. Did that catch your attention?

We will be spending 5 days at my parents place, surrounded by family and close family friends and acquaintances and then we will be driving back on Valentines Day. Sigh.

Well, I've always been a positive least outwardly (ha!) so I'm pretty sure I'm a big girl and I can handle this. People keep reminding me that the universe, God or whatever you happen to believe in only gives you what they/he/she thinks you can handle.

Bring it.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Organized mess

I have always been an organized mess kind of gal. When I was younger my parents threatened to shovel stuff out of my room in order to find the bed. The thing is, if they asked me to find an item, all I did was reach into the abyss of clothes and books and misc. stuff and produce whatever they wanted. See organized.

Now that I'm all grown up, things haven't really changed that much. When I get in the door I put my bag by the kitchen door take my shoes and coat off and put them by the closet..not in the closet (I know!) and the mail promptly goes on to the kitchen counter of which I complain I do not have enough counter space to do anything. Wha? Where did I get that from? And how do I fix it?

I can not tell you how much stuff I have found in little secret places while packing for this move. I think I've always known where it was...scanned it with my eyes over the past 6 years, but now I have to deal with it. Many boxes later I find that I am quite close to being ready to move...but I might ask to borrow my Dad's shovel after all.

With this weekend being taken up with my Grandfather's funeral and visiting with my family back home, it leaves me with 4 days next week before the move. Four days that I have only 2 hours at night because I will be working all day...8 hours...8 hours to finish everything...Well, since I am a mess... excuse me, an organized mess, I'm sure I will get it all done.

Past Chapter (you'll hear about him soon, I promise!) is actually driving me home for the funeral and has even offered to help me move. (I KNOW!) So if anything falls through the cracks he will help me.

Oh new chapter *sigh*

Friday, February 4, 2011

... and then the world crumbles

It's with a heavy heart I write today. My grandfather passed away this past Tuesday. He was quite the fighter until the end. I can't believe how strong he was! My family is quite private, but because my uncle is in the sports media eye, news traveled quite fast.

My Grandfather was such a loving, caring man. He put everyone before himself and had quite the contagious giggle. He always welcomed us with a smile and a hug and even when he was too sick to remember who we were he told us stories of his amazing family and how proud of us he was. He always was worried about his "sweetie" and protected her until his last breath.

My Dad and one of my Uncles was with him until the end and they told me that he passed in his sleep ever so peacefully. That makes me feel so much better, knowing that he slipped away gently without any pain.

The night it happened, I was in my living room going through stuff to pack and my hallway light flickered. I was a bit annoyed because I had changed that light bulb about 3 months prior to an energy efficient one that is supposed to last 7 years or so. It flickered for roughly 20 minutes and then completely went out at 9pm. I got up and flicked the switch a few times thinking the connection was the problem. I decided to deal with it in the morning and went to bed shortly after. When I woke up I turned the switch, which did nothing, so I had to change it.

When my Dad called to say my Grandfather had passed he said he had looked at his watch and it was 10p which is 9p my time.

I love you Grandpa and thank you for all the love, respect and values you have given me. It has been an honor and a privilege to have been your Granddaughter and to have known you. You will live in my heart forever xo