It’s Friday and it’s the end of January! Hooray for the end of things (which of course means the beginning of new things)! I’ve actually scheduled this post all the way back from Monday because the dude and I are taking a trip for the weekend. We’ll be heading up to central Ontario for a nice quiet weekend in a cabin. We’ve totally earned it. We’ve both worked really hard at our own jobs lately (well, we always do), and I’ve been working really hard at this blog!
I’ve had a lot of time to think about where I want to end up with this blog — what road I want to take it down. And I’ve come to realize that having an end goal of my blog bringing me $X by [date] or having [# of visitors] or bringing me publicity from [cool vegan magazine] is an unreasonable goal which will take me away from why I started it in the first place. I mean, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I had big dreams of this blog launching me to semi-stardom the way Oh She Glows did for Angela Liddon, help me finance my own cookbook and lead me to a self-made career as a vegan blogger.
But the thing is, I like my day job, I like my current life (even though it is busy!) and I started this blog for one simple reason: I like sharing.
So since last Friday, I’ve had some time to think about some more things. I’ve already shared that I have plans to stay living in Scarborough and work at my current living space. Our kitchen is coming together nicely. Instead of moving on to the living room next I’ll be tackling a smaller project — too many big projects at once isn’t good for me. I’ll be painting and re-organizing my bathroom and putting up just one shelf, and then painting and re-arranging my room. I look forward to sharing progress from both projects with you!
As for how my goals relate to the blog, I would like to start getting more serious about photography. For while I’ve gone back and forth about the merits of a DSLR and I’ve decided that I will hold off on getting one until I either magically run into an extra couple hundred dollars or my blog somehow starts generating revenue. That said, I want my pictures on this blog to start looking like I give a damn. And it’s totally possible to get great results from phone pics, especially when you have a good phone (I do — heck yes Galaxy)! But there’s a pretty simple reason why my pictures tend to look like crap: I take my pictures when I actually make the food, as in, when I’m going to eat it. I’m not a professional food blogger, so I don’t make food for the sake of taking pictures (yet). As the result of my crazy schedule, I often take food pics in the early morning when it’s still dark or late at night when it’s… once again, dark. This may change in the summertime. Anyway, what I plan on doing is gradually going through the blog archives and replacing the old crappy pictures with better ones. But that is still a ways a way. In the meantime, pardon me while I try to get a handle on my photoshop skills. We’re all learning, here!
Lastly, here’s some recipe projects I’m working on for you all that you can expect over February and March — all of these are gluten-free on top of being vegan:
- Easy crispy breaded tofu
- Zesty cilantro pesto
- Avocado and dill veggie dip
- Black bean “Big Macs” (with veganized Mac Sauce!)
- Sweet and nutty veggie gnocchi
- Healthy and chewy banana cookies
- More smoothies — OF COURSE!
- Bonus: a guide on keeping your tattoos fresh in a vegan-friendly way
That’s about it! Now, for the real reason I sat down to write this: ten things I’ve been all about these days.
- HurRAW! lip balm in root beer — it’s a raw (cold-pressed), vegan lip balm that has made applying lip balm go from fun (because let’s face it, applying lip balm is already pretty rad and good-for-you) to totally addictive. I’m already terrified of what will happen when I run out — do I buy more root beer or try another flavour? (Yeah right, I’ll probably buy three).
- Wilderness Family Natural’s raw coconut spread. I’ve been all about coconut lately (must be the coconut nectar in my life)!
- Parsnips. I didn’t know what a parsnip was for the longest time. Like, I knew it was a vegetable, but… that’s about it. The first time I even heard the word was in Homestar Runner. Remember Homestar Runner? Anyway, I’ve been really into parsnip fries and hash browns lately.
- My Penfield toque — this is the design I have it in. I wear this toque almost every day. Oh, Canadian winter, you are no match for me!
- Coconut bacon — I use pre-made, but I am going to try and make my own very soon.
- The Piano Guys’ cover of “Ants Marching” by Dave Matthew’s Band. I wish this had been out when I was choreographing my ballet routine last year.
- EVERYONE Soap in coconut and lemon — I love do-it-all products, and this is a scent that’s exciting enough to wake me up but gentle enough to cap off the day with.
- Hot Yoga. I’ve been going back to yoga class since quitting the gym! I’ll admit that leaving the gym was really, really hard at first. But with the current routine I’m on, I’m no longer hungry all the time or sore all the time. I’m mostly doing yoga and ballet with a little contemporary here and there — oh, and climbing, of course!
- Dan Mangan + Blacksmith’s Club Meds — it’s a nice and different direction for Dan Mangan, who has really moved past his cutesy, swayable songs.
- Rooibos tea. I’ve been moving back down to one cup of coffee a day, and trying to generally work my caffeine consumption down. Rooibos is good for when I want a full, bold flavour but can still get a fresh taste.
So that’s it… how do you end these things? Uh… *tap dances away*