Wait.. that’s vegan!?

Hi everyone. After my post the other day about things I noticed since going vegan, my sister told me I should make a post about foods that are vegan but you wouldn’t assume are. I am still discovering these foods and I love finding foods that are ‘accidentally vegan.’


  1. Oreos: While I have no idea what chemicals make up the creamy center of the Oreo cookie, I do know it’s vegan. I also know that unless you can hide them like there’s no tomorrow, these cookies don’t last more than 2 days in my house. 😉 03202CF
  2. Twizzlers: Twizzlers recently got rid of the gelatin in their products which make them the perfect vegan-friendly movie companiontwizzlers4
  3. Reese’s Puffs: Despite most other Hershey products being filled with milk and whey and animal products galore, cocoa powder is used. Bonus, they are also gluten free!87adee93-165e-4e20-834a-c9efc4c0a39c.jpg.web
  4. Cocoa Pebbles: Once again, cocoa powder is used to flavor the cocoa pebbles. These are gluten free as well!0002_Cocoa-Pebbles
  5. Hershey’s Chocolate Syrup: Perfect on top of some vegan pancakes or some dairy free ice cream!91z14MSci2L._SY679_
  6. Chick-Fila Waffle Fries: Once again they’re potatoes, but these are fried in vegetable oil instead of the alternative… Animal fat.slide_362648_4081737_free
  7. Swedish Fish: No gelatin in these either.450
  8. Poptarts: Not every flavor of Pop tarts are vegan.. Mainly the chocolate ones. However, the unfrosted kinds and most of the fruit flavored ones are vegan but always double check!Strawberry_Pop_Tarts
  9. Junior Mints: My absolute favorite candy is vegan! Other than Reese’s peanut Butter Cups but Justin’s brands get the job done just as good!Junior-Mints-Box-Small
  10. Thin Mints: Just because you’re vegan doesn’t mean you can’t eat girl scout cookies. Thin mints are vegan!!thin_mints_new_web

Food fights

Nov. 18: What’s the dumbest thing you and a partner have ever fought about?

Hi everyone. Okay, I hate to say this but I can be very passive aggressive when it comes to disagreements. So typically, when it comes to significant others, friends, and family, there aren’t many fights.

Despite this, I am also a very indecisive person. The only thing I ever really argue/fight about with anyone is where to eat.  Like I can honestly say it’s never caused any actual fights or a strain on any relationship but it is such a hassle.

Being vegan, my options can sometimes be limited, so every time I go out my friends make me pick where we go. After rolling my eyes, I tell them that most places they pick have vegan options and that wherever they pick will also be fine. After they roll their eyes, they tell me “You’re the one with the dietary restrictions… so you have to pick.” After go back and forth for awhile we both finally decide on a place to eat.

Sometimes however, it isn’t that easy. I was once with my friend and we both couldn’t decide what to eat. This was actually before I went vegan so there were no excuses for places we couldn’t eat. We spent an hour driving around debating over where we would eat. We then went mini golfing and drove around for another hour before finally settling on Denny’s.

I hope you all don’t struggle this much with where to eat.

Alicia

Quick College Update post

Hi everyone. So, a couple posts ago, I mentioned that I had absolutely zero clue where i wanted to transfer to next fall. Well this is still the case, but I have a little bit more figured out.

For starters, college. I have been looking into schools for about a month, picking ones with a variety of majors, extracurriculars and good financial aid packages. I had written a list of maybe 15 colleges down that had all of these. Upon further investigation, hearing from other students, etc, I have narrowed my list down to 7, and here’s why.

  1. DePaul University- Lincoln Park, Il: DePaul is a great school that is close to almost everything in Chicago. With a wide variety of extracurriculars. Sports, and majors, it’s basically perfect. The only con is that because of the proximity to my house, my parents are urging me to live at home while I attend. I get saving $15000 and potential loans in ideal, but at what cost?
  2. Ohio University- Athens, Ohio: This is newer on the list so I don’t have an insane amount of reasons why it’s there. The school is great, they have everything I need and more, plus  I Wouldn’t have to live at home…
  3. Xavier University- Cincinnati Ohio: Xavier is still high on my list because it was my second option for schooling the first time around. It’s a beautiful quaint campus with an impressive track record on all things academic. My only issue is it doesn’t have a huge variety of majors so if I want to switch (again) I may be out of luck.
  4. The University of Findlay- Findlay, Ohio: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.
  5. Otterbein University- Westerville, Ohio: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.
  6. Winona State University- Winona Minnesota: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.
  7. Clarke University- Dubuque Iowa: These last 4 are on the list because they have everything I need, some even more. I really want to attend one of the top 3, but if somehow that can’t happen, one of these four will be just as great.

I have asked my dad to let me visit Xavier and University of Ohio soon so that I Can gauge if I want/still want to attend either. I have visited DePaul, however I have not taken an official tour. I want to do and get a bit more information to make a truly educated decision.

Alicia

Mental Illness Awareness Week

Hi friends, this week was mental illness awareness week. Basically, having mental illnesses suck but we need to understand that 1 in 4 people struggle with them and that typically, these people can function in society just like people without.

I always struggled with my mental illnesses since I was in middle school. Now, I am finally coming to terms with them and myself. It’s very unfortunate that I had to struggle with mental illnesses alone for such a long time. I do not want any of you, or anyone ever to have to go through something like this alone.

Recently, I started following the instagram @wearyourlabel which is basically a clothing store that tells you it’s okay to not be okay. This instagram sells shirts with slogans such as “self care isn’t selfish,” “you are enough,” and “anxious but courageous.” I really like all of them and in order to prevent impulse buying each of them, I am holding off until I can narrow down until there is only one I am absolutely in love with.

After I started following wear your label, another instagram account @buddyproject. Intrigued as to what the ‘buddy project’ was all about, I followed them back and took a look at their website. Basically the buddy project is a project started by Gabby Frost. Gabby’s mission was to pair people as buddies while raising awareness for mental illnesses.

I really think that the buddy project is a great organization and kudos to Gabby for thinking about it. It’s very easy to sign up for a buddy. All you have to do is share you name, twitter handle, email, and share what a few interests are and bam! You’re signed up. I’m not sure how long it will take to get my buddy, but when I do find out, I’ll be sure to let you all know. I also recommend everyone suffering from mental illnesses or those wanting to be more aware of mental health in general, to take a look at either wear your label or buddy project.

Have a great weekend and Always Remember to be Aware of Mental Illnesses. I didn’t write 2 essays and three speeches about them in college for nothing

Alicia

Addicted… to Social Media

Hello all. Today, I was browsing the snapchat discovery page and saw a girl gave up social media for a month and discussed her overall experience, pros, cons, etc. I have seen many people (not really.. Only about 5) give up social media and then write about their overall experience. What struck me in the article I read today, was that she discussed reasons why she went back on social media… No one, other than this one obviously, has discussed why they returned to social media, only the pros of giving it up. All of these people, including myself, did discuss why social media is controlling, frustrating,etc, but I realize I never mentioned, in depth, the reasons I didn’t bid adieu to social media forever. So, I figured I would give a few pros to social media, and revisit a few of the cons as well.

Pro #1: Keeping up to date on what your friends/family are doing.

I follow over 500 people on instagram, about 300 on twitter, have over 1000 facebook friends, and probably 150 or so snapchat amigos as well. Social media gives me the opportunity to keep track of what they’re doing with their lives. Obviously, I hear big events from people I am close with via text, phone call, or face to face encounter. However, random things, like cool concerts, adventures, and other random things that I may think are cool are not always brought up. While not everything I see or read on social media about people is life changing, I do like seeing when people I am close with, or even simple acquaintances are having a blast in their lives.

Con #1: Political Posts

These are the reasons I still don’t have the facebook app downloaded on my phone. POLITICAL POSTS. Yes, I post my own, almost everyone I know posts something political every once in awhile. A girl has blocked me for my liberal posts and when I see people who are so intolerant and unaware of the state of our country it makes me want to vomit. I totally understand that people have their own opinions, no matter how much sometimes they make me cringe, but being as ass to someone for their views isn’t something I’m too keen on. And when people have the audacity to bring their Donald Trump bullshit onto MY POST I draw the line right there and will drag them into the dark depths of republican hell… Hillary Clinton-ville.

Pro #2: Memes/filters/fun

You are lying to me if you say that putting on funny alien faces and having fireworks pop out of your face on snapchat isn’t funny. Despite the terrible Harambe incident, the memes are chuckle worthy. Whenever I go on social media I am bombarded with memes, stupid filters, and videos of funny people doing funny things. I could spend hours on vine looking at people talking about their croc tattoos, random dancing videos, and cats doing actions that hysterically correlate to songs. If I had to thank social media for one thing, it’s making me laugh until I am crying and my stomach hurts on a daily basis.

Con #2: Take up time when could do something productive

My favorite thing to do is going on twitter and seeing people tweeting about how much homework they have, or how many tests they have to study for. WHY ARE YOU TWEETING IT WHEN YOU COULD BE STUDYING? Maybe I should practice what I preach. Whenever I am trying to get out of doing work, I immediately grab my phone and press the twitter app. All of a sudden it is an hour later, and I have scrolled past countless tweets, videos, and photos and have yet to write that 5-page essay. Hmmmmm. It is nice to check a few times a day, but when there are more pressing issues, such as homework that can’t complete itself, social media can be quite the menace.

Pro #3: Being independent of your phone

My phone was always sort of a safety blanket for me. Any ‘awkward’ moment I found myself immersed in, I would immediately pick my phone up, like today when my avocados dropped out of my cart and I didn’t notice and had to wait for a lady to go “Miss, you dropped these!” from 50 feet away. I immediately thanked her and pulled my phone out, mindlessly scrolling through in order to forget the situation that had just occurred.

Whether I would be walking to class, waiting for our professor, standing in line at the grocery store, any moment of silence I would pull my phone out. I still do that, less frequently, though. I don’t know if I’ll ever be 100% independent from my phone and comfortable enough to not pull out my phone in any awkward moment of my life, but I am starting to be more independent from it, and I don’t need it attached at my hip every second of the day anymore, which is a start.

Con #3: Rude people

I know this is a bit more popular when you have quite an instagram following, but cyber bullying is a real thing, even if there are quite a few people who seem to think it isn’t a pressing topic. I have personal experience on this and I know many other people do as well. Rude people are everywhere and it’s a shame that people hide behind computer screens to show hatred. I know you can go on private and block people blah blah blah, but if people really want to talk shit, as unfortunate as this is,  they will find a way.

 

Ther you all have it. A social media review from both sides. Hope you all enjoyed this post and the fact that I’m getting back in the swing of things and posting more frequently.

Until next time

Alicia

October 1st

Happy Halloween! well not really, but it is October 1st, so it basically is the same thing. If Christmas gets the entire month of December and half the month of November (Also i have already seen Christmas decorations and it was only September so Christmas sort of gets the last third of the year), So, Happy Halloween!

That literally isn’t even what this post is about. October 1st is World Vegetarian Day, it was also VeganMania in Chicago, but I had to babysit for the entire duration of the event so I unfortunately couldn’t attend. I also missed a goat walk, so that was probably the worst part.

Anyway, I have decided to go back on my journey through veganism over the past year and see what I’ve learned and how I’ve changed.

I remember vividly, my first night of college, my roommate and I went to Chipotle. I ordered chicken on my burrito bowl and my roommate looked disgusted at me and said “Chicken? You know they kill them right?” And I sat there, unfazed, as I continued to spew my order to the guy behind the counter. And here I am, a year later, yelling at the man in the chicken commercial who brags that their chickens are organic and cage free.

While I mentioned in one of my most recent posts that I had been a bad vegan, I have been. This journey has been long, grueling, however rewarding. I have no shame that for my first 18 years of my life, I lived on mac and cheese, grilled cheese, chocolate milk and bacon! Then my roommate has me watch forks over knives, cowspiracy, and other random videos about animal abuse.

Then, I went full vegan. Something not many people do all at once. Most people I know go vegetarian first for a few years, and then if they’re feeling outrageous, they go vegan. I however, cut animal products cold turkey. It has been a struggle, a rewarding one but a struggle nonetheless. I really feel that I should have transitioned slower, and maybe I wouldn’t have ‘cheated.’ I didn’t, and am learning how difficult this is.

I understand that this isn’t cheating, technically, because I am the one who is doing this. I am in this by myself for myself and for the animals.

I have been trying my best to remember why it is that I started the transition to veganism. I am doing it for the animals. I am doing so that 100 less animals are killed every year, and that despite all of the animals killed and tortured, it won’t be because of me.

Today, a year later, here I am, struggling but doing very well at it. I wouldn’t consider myself full vegan because I have slipped up a few times, but I am trying. Today, I am 30 pounds lighter, happier, crying whenever I see farm animals that were saved, and yelling at every chicken commercial I see. I really needed to write this post, for myself, to show how far I’ve come, and to shoe how far I need to go. I am doing well, but still have a long way to go.

So, happy world vegetarian day. Go vegetarian. Then vegan!

Alicia

light

A goal of mine for as long as I can remember is to exude light. To be as radiant as humanly possible. Like those girls in the movies, whose aura matches her best friends in the back seats who drive around town with their windows down, music blasting into every wandering set of ears they pass.

Over the past 19 years of my life, I’ve come to the conclusion that this idea only exists in movies, that this goal is not something I can possible achieve, and no matter how hard I try, I will in this constant state of longing for this feeling I cannot have.

Despite this conclusion, my mind always wanders to why I can never achieve this. These radiant people I rarely come across of hear about seem so carefree and ethereal, and here I am, just the opposite. Why can’t i be like them? What did they have that I didn’t?

We are the same yet different, the same just under different circumstances. We both face the hardships this world puts on us, yet I just see them in this state, this unworldly state.They make the best of their circumstances, why can’t i make the best of mine?

When I choose to look beyond the hardships I face, beyond all of my obligations, and just focus on things that make me euphoric, I begin to realize,  I emanated light this whole time.

Vegan Chocolate Layer Cake

One of the items on my summer bucket list was to make a vegan cake, and I surprisingly did it. I’ve had this recipe on a word doc for a while so I don’t have the website where it originated. I also may have adjusted a family recipe to make it vegan, I really can’t remember. Anyway, the cake was delicious, and even my sister, who isn’t vegan, really enjoyed it. Note I didn’t make the frosting (we used store bought) but I have made the frosting for cupcakes I once made and the frosting is delicious as well.

As a kid, I always loved chocolate cake, and I’ve always been a sucker at parties for cake. However, since going vegan, cake has been something I haven’t been able to enjoy. For my birthday I didn’t get a cake (because my family doesn’t really know anything about vegan baking) and just ended up eating grapes after my grandma put candles in a few of them.

With this recipe, I was quite surprised it turned out as good as it did. With a few of my other vegan baking experiences, I’ve ended up with underdone banana bread, dry chocolate chip cookies, and the most disgusting oily frosting I’ve ever eaten (not this recipe’s). So naturally, I was a little bit nervous about making this recipe. Not only did I have to please myself, but my sister was also going to enjoy this cake as well, and I don’t think I would live it down if this recipe turned out less than perfect. However, it did, and after she added some flower sprinkles, the cake was to her liking.

How I made this delicious vegan cake:

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After preheating my oven to 350F, I gathered all of my ingredients (listed at the end of this post)

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Next, in a large bowl (as large as you have) put all of the dry ingredients in that bowl ,and whisk together.

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Now, in a medium sized bowl, add all of the wet ingredients and whisk those together as well.
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Using a mixer, gradually mix the wet ingredients with the dry, making sure not to over mix.
Next, grease two 8″ round pans and divide the batter into the two pans.
Note: When baking my cakes, there was some cake hat stuck to the pan, not too much and the cakes were not difficult to remove, however, to make the residue as minimal as possible and removing the cakes simple, you can place parchment in the pans before pouring the batter.
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Bake  until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. (40 minutes) Let the cakes cool completely before frosting.

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Once the cakes are cooled, run a knife around the edge of both cake pans, and flip the pans over to remove each cake.
Once the first cake is set on the plate, cover the entire top of that cake with frosting. Then place the second cake on top of that. Frost the entire top of that cake and around the sides of the entire cake. Decorate if needed desired. Serve.
Ingredients
Dry Ingredients:
  • 2½ Cups  Flour
  • 2½ Cups  Sugar
  • 1 Cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • ½ teaspoon Baking Soda
  • 1 teaspoon Salt

Wet Ingredients:

  • 2⅔ Cups Non-Dairy Milk of Choice (I used almond)
  • ⅔ Cups Vegetable Oil (Canola can be used as well)
  • 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
Instructions
  1.  Preheat your oven to 350F (180C).
  2. Prepare two 8″ round baking pans by lightly greasing them.
  3. In a large bowl whisk together all of the dry ingredients, then put aside.
  4. In a medium bowl whisk together all of the wet ingredients.
  5. Pour the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix until just combined. Don’t over mix.
  6. Divide the batter into the prepared pans, then bake for about 40 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Let the cakes cool completely before frosting.
  7. To Assemble the Cake: Run a knife around the edges of the cake pans, and flip the pans over to remove the cakes.
  8. Set the first cake on your cake plate, and frost the top. Place the second cake on top of the frosted cake, and spread the remaining frosting on top of that cake.
I hope all of my vegans (and non-vegans) try this recipe and let me know how it goes. Also, if anyone has any other fool proof vegan recipes I should try, let me know.
Alicia

Summer Bucket List UPDATE

Hey everyone, so at the beginning of the summer I made a post depicting my Summer Bucket List, I decided to give you all an update on the things on the list. Let’s get started…

1.Use no Social Media for the entire summer.

I did this for about 2 and a half months. June 3rd- August 22nd (I think but don’t quote me on this). It honestly wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be. Not using social media has taught me that there is more to life than constantly checking my phone for updates and seeing how many likes each of my posts gets. Funny thing… I still haven’t redownloaded the Facebook and Twitter app. I did redownload Snapchat and Instagram, but really only check Instagram once a day or less. I do however use snapchat a lot, but I used it wayyy more frequently before I gave it up for the summer.

2. Meet my Fitbit step goal 6 days per week. (goal is 12,000 steps)

Funny story… not actually that funny. I lost my Fitbit (end of July/early August) and just found it the other day, so during the past 3-4 weeks I haven’t been keeping track, however when I did know where it was (my wrist) I was meeting the 12000 step goal at least 5 days a week and almost always 6 days.

3. Take a photo a day (I may start another page on here documenting it)

This failed. I mean I was working constantly and didn’t have much time for other things… I did take at least a few pictures a day and may be putting up a page on my blog for them so keep an eye out…

4. Make a vegan cake.

Okay, I actually did this one last night. I was sitting at home with my sister and we were like “let’s bake something.” While she pushed me to make cookies, I told her that I HAD to make a cake because it was on my summer bucket list. So I found a recipe and we made it. I’m going to make a full post for it because I have a lot to say about it and actually took a few step by step pictures, so once again, keep an eye out for that.

5. Explore Chicago.

Well, I wouldn’t say I explored Chicago, but I definitely did go downtown more times than I normally would have. I went to a lot of new places… restaurants, museums, parks,etc, which is exploring enough for me

6.Spend a weekend in Wisconsin by myself

7.Go to my local farmer’s market.

8.Start doing yoga

9.Complete the one-month makeover

10. Get my passport.

7-10 did not happen… oops

11. Reorganize my room, throw out old things, get rid of clothes I don’t wear, etc.

I did a lot of going through old things and throwing out things I don’t use/need. I organized but since I’m moving into my basement within the month, I wouldn’t say everything is exactly to my liking but it will be once I’m out of this room and in the basement.

12. Make nicecream

nope

13. Go thrifting

I actually did this quite a bit and got some super cool articles of clothing

14. Read 3 books

Working on my third as we speak

15. Run, I want to be able to run a 10k but we’ll see. My knees hate running

16.Write down every good thing that happens to me and put it in  jar or here

17. Get another piercing

18. Get another tattoo

15-18 didn’t happen, unless you count my piercing that closed up and I had to re pierce myself

All for now,

Alicia

hey fam i’ve been gone for a month and here’s why

Hi friends, sorry for changing my URL once again… haha I suck and am very indecisive. But I like this one and it might (hopefully) stay fro more than a month. Anyway, I decided to blog, mainly because I’ve been in the writing mood lately, yet I haven’t had much to say. Despite this, I wanted to get some words down on paper, or word doc. I had only posted once in August, if you can even call that pitiful post a legitimate post. So I decided to talk about my life a little and what I’m doing with my life, or what I’m not doing with it.

For starters, I’m not going to school. And let me tell you, playing the role of college dropout (not really but that’s what my dad called me) who drives her sister to school in fleece penguin pajama pants and then naps until noon is not all it’s made out to be.

As much as I thought I would love not going to school, not learning, being freed of homework and deadlines, I miss it. I miss school. I miss San Diego more than anything. All of my friends back there are having the times of their lives and I’m here, alone. I mean I do have friends who also stayed home but it’s still not the same. All of my friends and even my sister tell me they’re jealous of a life without homework, but I’d long to do something of the nature. I sleep a lot, I drive my sister to school, and I babysit. That’s it. I play with my dog too sometimes, when she’s not sleeping. Really that’s it.

I’ve been a bad vegan. I ate milk chocolate and a few other things. Not only morally do I regret doing that, but physically as well. My stomach is throwing me the bird for putting those toxins in my body and I feel like I’m dying.

Babysitting has been the highlight of the time I’ve been gone, so let’s discuss that. I started nannying for a family 6 days a week about 15 minutes from my house. They’re a cute Indian family and the whole family is very sweet. The girls are kind, far too hyper, but kind nonetheless. They call me “Miss Alicia” which is the sweetest and most polite thing I’ve ever heard. Aadya is 8 and Dhiti is 6. Aadya loves reading and you have to tell her to put a book down so she can do other things, such as eat and shower. Dhiti can’t stand reading and would rather play restaurant than anything else. They are always eager for me to try their Indian sweets too, which are always delicious, I am ecstatic I found them because they are such a genuine family. They also pay well which is a plus any day.
That’s really it though, I haven’t been doing much. I hope to be blogging more but at the rate I’m at, and the sheer writer’s block I have right now, I won’t be making any promises.
I feel like my blog has become a clutter of random writings, sadness, and life updates and I hope to sort of make a theme for my blog (i guess all of those fit into the lifestyle category… a chaotic lifestyle I suppose) but we’ll see.

So, until I find something to write about or I get my life together
Alicia