Whedon: Veg head?

>> Wednesday, August 25, 2010

I thought I’d combine this post with two of my favorite things: vegans and Joss Whedon.

I know, I know, how the hell am I going to connect those two things together coherently? Well, let me take a stab at it.

While noshing on some AMAZING buffalo tofu last night (sorry, no photo), Evan and I watched one of our old Whedon favs “Dollhouse”. Specifically we were watching S01E07 in which a touch-induced contagion spreads quickly through a local college campus causing people’s inhibitions to fall greatly out of whack. Funny enough, the epicenter of the outbreak happens to be in a building dedicated by Rossum.

Echo happens to see a news report about a death on the campus and feels an inexplicable need to go to the school. Later you find out that she is familiar with the location and you get some great flashbacks to Caroline. In her flashbacks, Caroline is a HUGE animal rights activist!

She discusses AR with friends over dinner, and though I can’t pinpoint what she’s eating, her remarks about animal rights caused me to stop eating, pause the show, and ask Ev “Hey! Think she’s a vegan!?” To which he replied, “Wait, what?” which led to an agreement with me that Caroline could definitely be a vegan based on her AR actions presented in this episode.

A quick Google search reveals that most people are just generally a little miffed with her silly plan to go sneak in, film the doggies and kitties in the animal experimentation lab, sneak out, and leak the info to the press… (Yeah, that’ll stop a multi-billion dollar company like Rossum… sure Caroline.)But, I didn’t really find a lot of people talking about her possible veganism. Makes me wish her food was in focus for the camera so we could see what it was, or that Joss had written in a scene of Caroline at a buffet so we could REALLY see what this girl eats. (Wouldn’t it make a great character trait, and might explain her rather… um… malnourished stature?)

Well, I’ll let you guys talk amongst yourselves on this one, I cannot make a concrete call either way on the eating habits of a completely fictional television character on a program that's already been cancelled. However, it would be cool if Joss wrote a vegan into the story, even if it’s not obvious. And even if she can’t remember it herself.



>> Thursday, August 19, 2010

Ugh, why do I do that? Why do I always do that!? Why do I somehow get involved in other people’s drama? Even with the best of intentions, and sometimes with no intentions at all, I get wrapped up in things anyway.

Now I’m rather adamant about keeping my work life separate from my blog. I may complain here and there, but in general I think it’s better not to say where I work or what I do. That is, unless I get a job at an awesome place like, I don’t know, like NuVal, Open Sky, or a publishing company where I can be more open about my day-to-day. If you must know anything at all, know that I work with kids, teens, adults, and seniors. Sound too general? Well, it is, but it’s also true!

That being said, I don’t want to restrict talking about certain things that do go on in the workplace. I’m speaking more towards co-worker relations, or even to a broader extent, the general nature with which people interact. We spend so much time together, there’s bound to be some wacky antics going on!

I (for the most part) like my job. I like my coworkers, I like my boss, I like her boss, I like the highest up boss, and mostly I like our purpose, intent, and practices. I’m lucky, I know. Many people out there aren’t so lucky, I wasn’t in the past

However, I’ve gone and done it again… got involved where I perhaps shouldn’t have. I am guilty of a large workplace faux pas: becoming personal friends with your boss. Thing is, I swear it doesn’t affect our work relationship! I am also friends with another coworker, and they don’t necessarily care for each other much. How does that happen? Well, they both fulfill different desires I want out of friends and are wonderful in their own way. Since I wouldn’t be friends with someone unkind, in that respect they are very similar.

To often though, I’m finding myself involved in a deadly game of he-said-she-said, but in this case it’s more like she-said-she-said. All I know is that hearsay doesn’t hold up well and tends to just exacerbate negative emotions.

It leaves me to wonder though, workplace frienships: fun or folly?


Fear not sweet bloggers...

>> Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Yes, I know, my template is horribly off!!! I'm in the process of reworking the code so it looks nice and shiny. Please bear with the mess.


Somebody's got a case of the Mondays...

>> Monday, August 2, 2010

Yeah, that was totally me today. Too bad I went to sleep AN HOUR late! Grrrrrrrrr. Ah well, live and learn right? I had just enough time this morning to have a nice piece of the cake I baked last night. The consensus: meh. I told Ev to eat a piece so I can throw it away already. Since the frozen fruit I put into it was already on it's last leg, I can bear to part with the wasted flour and sugar I also put into it.

Work went by surprisingly quickly, mostly due the the very long meeting that greeted me when I first walked in. Hours later, happy hours though I might add (I love the company I work for), and ducked out to head to Chipotle for lunch. What can I say? I woke up way too late to make my lunch this morning. But fear not, it shall not happen again, my salad and leftovers are already nestled in the fridge waiting for me.

So much for the bike ride tonight though, I was just too damn tired. That, and my shoulder being wrenched from Evan's practice judo take-downs in the pool didn't help a lot. I decided to cut my losses and research a few things online: blu electronic cigarettes (non-nicotine of course, I just think they look cool), catch up on my Google Reader, check out collapsible rear baskets for my new bike, and just general dicking around on the internet. Fun stuff I know.

I did make a few neighbors jealous this evening which stemmed from one of those "look in the fridge and see what you can throw together" moments. I happened upon this jar, and I knew everything was going to be Ok.

Starting with some shallots sweated in EB, I added A LOT of this curry paste (it's VEGAN!) along with some water, red lentils, and garbanzo beans. I was hoping the lentils would break apart and create a lovely gravy... which is exactly what happened!

Naturally I forgot to start my rice BEFORE my actual meal, so I threw some brown rice together with some "traditional" Indian spices.
Actually, I have no idea if those are traditional or not, I just did a quick google on 'indian rice' and nabbed a few ideas. I threw in some cumin and cinnamon as an afterthought. It all came together nicely right in the nick of time with just a little green veg, broccolini.

We raided a neighbor's tree after the karate potluck yesterday and nabbed a few (3) fresh figs. Hmm, guess it's not a true raid until you hit at least 5 stolen fruits though, at least... Evan caught me with a peeled and sliced fig in one hand, fixed lens Canon in the other, leaning under the hood light of the kitchen trying to push down the flash popup with my nose in order to get a picture. He immediately took over and snapped this lovely dessert shot:
Isn't it all moody and ponderous? On a side note: my nails were weak, brittle, and refused to grow when I was omnivorous. Now that I eat mostly vegan, they grow so fast and are super strong!

Figs, sigh, I really want to like you, I really do. The only thing that comes to mind are womanly nether-regions when you are near. I know, that's TOTALLY messed up, and probably the most offensive thing I could ever say to a fruit (but perhaps a BIG compliment to women everywhere!?!?!?) but it's the truth.

So instead of that taste, I'll leave you with another, perhaps even one more sweet... Evan and Digger bonding in Hawai'i:


Woo, ok

I think it's high time I got back to blogging!!! Makes it easier now that Evan and I are living together again so I have access to his wonderful photographer equipment!

Though I haven't been actively blogging, I am still attached at the hip to my Google Reader, so I've been caught up on what's up with everyone on my blog roll so far. But, I have so much to catch you guys up on, I'm sure I have enough blogging material for a year!

Since Evan's on summer vacation (almost makes me want to be a regular school teacher so I can have breaks too) he's been the cutest little house "husband". While we're not really at the "honey-do list" point (and I hope to never really be at that), I can totally ask him to do things for the house during the day and come home after work with a few big chores already done.

It's also made me LOVE the weekends, when I actually have time to relax and enjoy our time together as a couple. It makes it so much easier to plan romantic-y things to do in Pasadena too. I adore this city, and am glad we've moved back.

Today started out pretty awesome, mostly because while Evan showered, I had my first SIAB!!!

In the mix:
- chocolate almond milk
- frozen strawberries
- 1 large handful of organic baby spinach (you really can't taste it)
- cacao nibs <- New obsession with these I never thought I could really do smoothies, mostly due to the fact that I HATE bananas and most smoothies contain either frozen or fresh ones. BLEH! However, the frozen strawberries add a nice texture and flavor, without adding just plain ice. I approve of greatly. The afternoon was spent at our karate family potluck pool party. Whew, say that five times fast! Since I just picked up a Marie Callendar's peach pie on our way there, there's not much to blog about. The party was awesome, it was great to reconnect with Sensei Victor since we're officially going back to karate next Saturday! After that we popped down to the slightly sketchy side of south LA to pick me up a bike from a seller on Craigslist. I am now the proud owner of a slightly faded, but very comfortable woman's Schwinn (photos to come). And since I was more mobile now, Evan and I biked over to our local Fresh & Easy to pick up some pizza supplies (love homemade pizza). We started with this:
I had every intention of getting the plain whole wheat pizza dough, but since my own rosemary plant kicked the bucket during the move, I caved and got seasoned white flour focaccia dough instead. Ev picked up some local goods at the farmer's market in Montrose today, name some creamy mild goat cheese and chunky sun-dried tomato paste. I grabbed some artichoke hearts (of course) and our basil plant is overloaded so I thought we should prune it a bit and eat the cuttings! The Brita water pitcher supervised the topping procedure.
Yes, I very clearly marked the halfway part of the dough so we knew how much space we had. We actually almost got into a fight putting on the sauce because I just cannot relinquish my power over cooking!!! I HAVE to have everything perfect! Somehow we made it work. Pre-oven (my side of basil, arty hearts, an eensy taste of the goat cheese, and lots of Daiya vs. Evan's side of goat cheese, basil, sun-dried tommytoes, and 4 cheese mexican blend):
Post-oven melty goodness:
Yes, we ate the WHOLE thing (it was pretty small). Since the oven was still hot, I decided to make that coffee cake I had planned on making earlier in the day in order to use up old frozen fruits. About half a large bag of frozen mango and frozen peaches went into this, along with a white cake recipe from VegWeb. I loves me some vegan cakes:
Look at that crumb!
Since I finished baking at 11:30pm, and have already brushed my teeth, I will save the cake for the morning with coffee.

Phew. Ok, time for sleep, tomorrow is another Monday.


I know, I know...

>> Friday, April 9, 2010

Where the hell have I been right???

Well, here's what I've been working on:
-New recipes
-Lots of reading
-Designing an entire fashion line and sewing it
-Working full-time
-Looking for a new apartment
-Trying to save money
-Getting over being sick
-Fitting in time for the BF

And the big ass thing taking up my time: P90X.

Yeah, that's right P90X. It's insane. Insanely wonderful.
I love having a solid and regimed fitness plan. I do really well with rules I guess, I always thought I might do well in the military for that same reason.

I've also come across some crazy diets recently that I (and my Doc) have given big honkin' thumbs down to. The largest being the HCG diet. So glad they changed it from a daily injection to drops under the tongue, but I'll pass on the pregnancy hormones this time, thanks.

Hey, if it works for you it works for you I guess. Now, I have my own HUGE doubts about homeopathy, but many of my coworkers are on this diet and are not aware of what exactly their taking. Yeah, losing a pound a day seems great, but that doesn't sound healthy does it?

Not to mention that I don't mess with hormones. I don't eat meat or dairy, I don't eat soy very often at all, heck, I don't even take birth control pills! And because of that, and the fact it might make me MORE fertile, I'm a no-go for HCG.

I also have been looking into the Eat Right 4 Your Type Diet, but got turned off by all the meat I apparently need to eat as an 0-. Combine that with no oranges or coconuts and my BS light starts blaring. Research indicates that this may be fluff as well, and I definitely never start anything without researching it thoroughly first.

So for now, with the advice of my doc, I'm going to limit my wheat consumption, nix the coffee, reduce my sugar intake and see how I feel. After a week, I gotta say that those things are definitely clogging my body up. It actually hasn't been that hard to give up my toast in the morning, and there are so many gluten-free breads now I think I'll be just fine.

And the P90X is just to kick up my workouts. I love running/yoga/hula, but it's been raining and cold, and sometimes you just want to buckle down and do 50 pushups in a row and lift some weights ya know? Am I a pro @ it? Not by any means, but with the few changes I've made in the past coupla weeks, I feel even that much better!


Trying my hand at a few things

>> Monday, March 1, 2010

Namely: Mahea's Gone Crackers, sprouting seeds, and chia pudding. Let's work in reverse, shall we?

So far, I'm munching on the chia pudding. In the mix:
-3/4 cup almond milk
-2 tbsp chia seeds
-2 squirts raw agave sweetner
-1/2 tsp cinnamon

I fork-wisked the first three ingredients together in a cutsie clear teacup(that's quite frankly too small for tea anyway) and stuck it in the fridge to set while I took my run. The cinnamon was stirred in as an afterthought when I realized that basically cinnamon makes everything better.

And I do say that I'm "munching" on my puddang because we all know the little *bite* you get out of gelled chia seeds, though I wish I had let it set a tad longer as I like less of a bite. Still fun to get a small crunch factor though.

I definitely do see a difference when I'm chia-less in my diet. I seem to have more energy when I've snuck the little bastards in, and enjoy them sprinkled on the ever present massaged kale salad. *Note* Kale is always bought dinner BEFORE massaging, so as not to take advantage of it.

As for the sprouting seeds, I'm using the Big Raw Blog's jar method, and currently my lentils and sunflower seeds are soaking in my own little mason jar. Yeah, I'm one of those "mason jar people". I do believe that sweet tea and lemonade just automatically taste better coming out of a mason jar. Go ahead and blame it on my Texan daddy, I don't mind. But I digress... In a few days (if i've done it right), I should be the proud muncher of some newly sprouted numblies.

I've seen sprouted things in the market before, and while I enjoy mung bean sprouts and alfalfa sprouts almost on the daily, I've never ventured out into the world of other sprouts. After Big Raw Vegan Blog posted twice about this, I knew I had to give it a try. The towel method I shall try after my jar method experiment.

And lastly for the "Mahea's Gone Crackers" or as Evan calls it "Mahea's blatant rip off of an excessively overpriced trademarked cracker" I think I've nailed down a good recipe:

1 cup brown arborio rice (not brown basmati)
1/2 cup quinoa, washed
3 tbsp tamari
1/2 cup flax seeds
1 1/2 cups broth
1/4 cup sesame seeds
black pepper
Olive oil

*Prehead oven to 3-fiddy.*

1. Cook the rice and quinoa with 2 cups of plain water and the 3 tbsp of tamari. (I'll confess I just threw them into my rice cooker for 1 cycle and that works fien.)
2. When cooked and cooled to the point of not burning yourself, transfer 3/4 of the mixture to a food processor and add the flax seeds. Slowly drizzle in the broth till mixture is sticky and looks like lumpy porridge. You may not use all the broth and that's ok.
3. Transfer to a large work bowl and fold in the remaining 1/4 mixture, sesame seeds, and broth (if any left). Season with black pepper.
4. Oil your 1/2 sheet pan very lightly and plop out the mass into the center. Use a rubber spatula to gently pull the goop around till you end up with the whole surface covered in a relatively uniform thickness. You will pull to hard and see the pan below, just go back the other way to patch it up.
5. Bake at 3-fiddy for an hour, till edged pull away and the center feels hard and dry.
6. Cool completely on pan (the carry over heat will help to finish the dehydration) and crack into pieces. Store in an airtight container and try not to sneak out of bed at midnight to devour them.

Picture soon... soon as I buy that new Canon. Which will be soon. But not yet. Patience!


In the nick of time.

>> Sunday, February 28, 2010

I'll be the first person to admit that time management is not something I do well.

Ugh, as soon as I write that, I am already reaching for the 'delete' button. However, I need to leave it alone, it's the truth. Though I'm not happy about it, that truth needs to be admitted.

It's a great joke in Hawai'i, that we run on Hawai'ain time. Basically, this means we're always 20 minutes behind what the actual clock says. You might think it stops at just a joke, but it's a universally known truth that we Hawai'ians tend to be 5-20 minutes late for just about everything. Not only that, but it's perfectly acceptable as well, and usually expected.

Well, I'm not in Hawai'i anymore (as is painfully realized every day that I wake up) and I'm also older and out of the nest so I directly feel the consequences of my own tardiness.

I HATE to admit it, but I am in some way always late to work every day. *CRINGE* (Trying not to delete that either...) When invited out, I'm sad to say that Evan and I tend to be the "late couple". I hate it. I mean, I REALLY REALLY hate it.

A lot of the reason I'm late in the morning is because I haven't had enough sleep. I go to bed late, every day. Not late as in "oh it's 4 am", more like late as in "I was supposed to be in bed 45 mins ago". So what's with all the late nights? Nothing really. I'm typically just watching TV or futtzing around on the internet.

I have some strange notion that when I'm sleeping, I'm missing something in my life. Instead of recharge time, I feel like I could be doing something anything that would be more interesting that sleeping. Problem is, I am so tired at that point, I am just watching TV or on the internet as I already said; i.e. doing mindless worthless activities.

I know that if this continues, it could mean disaster later in life: business meetings lost, potential wedding FAIL, missed appointments, tests, birthday parties... It's not that bad now by any means, but it does make me feel unreliable. I want to be counted on, depended on, hoped for, but that's impossible when one is chronically late.

Some people can live and work by a schedule, a date book, or day-to-day plan. I've tried, and failed miserably. While I like a clean and orderly house, desk, planner, car, etc, a clean and orderly schedule I avoid like peanut butter and bananas(aka: DEATH). I'm not a "fly by the seat..." girl, I would die as a "minute-by-minute planned" person.

So that brings me to the word of the day week year millennium eh, probably the most important word of all time: BALANCE.

It always comes back to balance. Time, being the most challenging thing to balance of.. well... all time I guess! It seems hard to balance something that's constantly running away from you.

So that's a new goal of mine: Finding the balance in time management.

This will include a stricter bed time for sure, but also not planning things so close together I'm not sure if I'll be on time for the next gig. Also, a stricter wake-up time, so I have enough minutes to cook and eat breakfast, get on some makeup, flat iron. But also, I hope to see fluidity in things as well, know when I can push something back if it'll be better for me.

The idea I'm going for is that less mindless activity and more thoughtful activity will not only fill my days, but my mind as well. That way, I can go to bed (early) knowing that I had an amazing day that left nothing to want.


Here comes the sun...

>> Monday, February 22, 2010

To tell you the truth, I miss blogging. I don’t have many readers, but it can be so cathartic to get all the jumble out of your head and out into the world. Even if no one else is paying attention, writing has always been a relief for me.

I can’t say that a lot has been going on in my life, but when I think about everything that's happening, it certainly is quite a chunk of action! First thing's first though: THE SUN IS SHINING!!! After the cloudy meed Los Angeles has been recently, it's so nice to see sunlight! Gotta get me some sun viatims!

Sunlight aside, I'm happy to report that I got a promotion at work. I’m in a new position, one that is challenging and comes with its own schedule change and higher pay scale (THANK GOD). A full-time schedule has allowed me to quit my second job and not have to wake up at 4:30am. That means more sleep and hopefully less stress.

I’ll still be living paycheck to paycheck for a while, but perhaps if I stick to “poverty mode” (been there for a long time), I may be able to actually afford a plane ticket home to see my family (FINALLY!). I have so many loose ends to wrap up with them, graves to visit of family who died while I was away, old high school ties to finish up, and I need to see my parents!!! There is such a void inside of me, and it grows every day I leave things in my life unfinished and every day I spend away from my real home.

Luckily, my bosses helped by being very considerate with the position and the schedule change. They worked around my hula and yoga classes so I didn’t have to give those things up. (Side note: I wasn’t willing to give them up actually, I would rather have stayed at my old lower-pay position in able to do the things that I love.) Turns out that sticking to your guns can pay off in the working world.

I also got the OK from Mr. Stiles to move back in together just in time for our 5 year anniversary. (FYI to catch you up, we used to live together but it was a disaster… well let’s just say it was not perfect at all. With no car and only a part-time job, I was more of a part-time partner too. I used Evan for everything, he was quite a crutch for me, and our relationship suffered terribly. When we moved out, I was really upset with him. We didn’t break up because neither of us wanted to, we just knew that we couldn’t live together at that time. Turns out that moving separately again was the BEST decision that was ever made in our relationship. We both got space, room to think, room to make new friends and I gained a lot of independence. I was able to meet my wonderful roommie, who has made my life so exciting and rich. And I feel more complete as a person than I have since I first started battling depression.) Now that I have a slightly higher wage, we can look for a nicer place that where we have been living, and have started having fun talking about where we want to look, what we want out of a new place, how we might decorate it, etc. It’s too much fun making plans with that man, I love him so!

On the downside, I haven’t been training as much as I should have for the triathlon that’s 1 MONTH AWAY!!! But, I do have a month, and I can hone my skills as much as I can during that time. The skies are clearing up so hopefully the rain will hold off until I can get out my running shoes and bicycle helmet.

Those huge things combined with:
- trying to get to the art gallery for a show I really want to see
- checking out my favorite used book stores for free crappy paperback novels
- cooking simply (because I can’t really spend a lot on groceries this month)
- playing with my cat and getting him the exercise he needs
- grabbing a new couch in off the street from the neighbors who are moving out
- spending time with my roommie
- launching a new business prospect

= me having a full (and bountiful) plate.

I suppose happiness is a lot easier when you have other things to distract you from the negativities in life. It’s easy to wallow when you’re sitting still, but much harder when you’re running all over the place trying to accomplish something meaningful.

I feel like this is a ‘get stuff done’ week. I’ve already got clean laundry and a clean house thanks to this weekend. Now it’s time to start crossing off other things on my list. It’s funny that as I do it, I seem to also be crossing off the “growing up” item as well. It’s an unspoken to-do, but a very important one. After all, growing up does not mean growing old.



>> Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Hey guys, a good friend's mom (whom I was close to) passed away so I'm taking a short hiatus. Be back soon!


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