2 years of veganism

Wow. 2 years of veganism. 2 years of being plant-based. Looking back on my past 2 years, I can’t say that they were all vegan. Especially at the start. I can’t say exactly how long I’ve been vegan, but I know that in these past 2 years so many animals were saved.

2 years ago, my roommate at the time, Delaney, showed me a video that forever changed my life. It was a video of a slaughterhouse somewhere in Europe (I believe Sweden) and these cows were being hung from their ankle on a conveyor belt as a man sliced their throats. I can still vividly see that image in my mind and I think it engrained there forever. It is the reason I stopped eating meat. And more videos just like that are the reasons I stopped consuming dairy.

These past 2 years have been rough. They have also been enlightening. But most of all they have been life-changing. I have done happy dances in stores when I found vegan chicken nuggets, vegan cupcakes, vegan macaroni and cheese, and so much more. I have binged on copious amounts of dairy-filled sweets, chocolate milk, and cheese.

I have changed so much as a person. I feel that veganism is truly a part of me and it has helped me morph myself into who I truly am and I sometimes wonder who I would be today had I not discovered veganism. My friends often ask me, “would you still have gone vegan had you not gone to San Diego?” And the truth is, I cannot answer that. I hope the answer is yes, but had I gone to school in Texas or Alabama, I really don’t think I would have.

It is so crazy to me how one decision can impact your entire life. In my last post, I said that I wished I had thought of Athens sooner, however, if I had started my freshman year at OU, odds are, I wouldn’t be vegan today. So, do I sometimes wish life was different and that I bypassed the stress of transferring, yes. Am I undoubtedly grateful that San Diego led me to veganism? Also yes.

Alicia

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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

What I’ve noticed since going vegan

Hi everyone. It’s been over a year since I decided to make the transition from omnivore to vegetarian and about 2 months of being completely vegan.

Since I started cutting meat and dairy and any animal product in general out of life, I have definitely noticed changes in all aspects of myself. Since I get quite a few questions from people asking the benefits of going vegan, I decided to make depicting some of the things I have personally benefited from since making this life change.


  1. I have more energy: tumblr_mej31n5m5S1ryo3y9Contrary to popular belief that going vegan makes you sluggish because of the lack of protein in your diet (eye roll) I have never had more energy. Prior to breaking my toe… I had been waking up at 5:40 each morning and going on an hour or so walk each day. It gave me a nice kick-start to my day and I sure as hell beat my mom and sister out of bed.
  2. My skin has been clearer: I’m not saying that I have no pimples… because I’m a teenager who, with hormones, and forgetfulness, sometimes forgets to change her pillowcases every other week or wash her face after a workout, but I don’t break out as frequently or nearly as much as I did before going vegan.
  3. I eat more but I weigh less: I used to count calories religiously as a younger teenager. I would still, despite my counting calories and vigorous fitness routines, not lose weight. Now, I eat a lot more (albeit I eat a lot more fruits, vegetables, and things to that nature) but I have lost weight/look slimmer with/without exercise.
  4. I poop more: Bowel movements are never things people like to discuss but I mean, it’s sort of common sense. I eat more, thus the waste has to go somewhere. So… I poop more. I don’t really know if this is a benefit or anything but I feel it is good to know.
  5. I have made friends: ezgif-3693741041Since the vegan population is pretty slim, whenever someone mentions the term vegan or even vegetarian, every single plant-based person within a 5-mile radius comes running. I have met a ton of cool vegans who have not only helped me stay on track with veganism but have also passed some amazing recipes my way.
  6. I am saving animals!: ezgif-2510867318I love animals (I’m sure you all know I’m partial to goats and dogs). I love every animal ever. I also used to love goat’s milk. Why is it that I found it okay to abuse (I didn’t know I was abusing these goats at the time) one animal I love but have another animal I love cuddle next to me on the couch? After going vegan, I have saved so many animals (even though it doesn’t seem like it) by eating plant proteins, milking almonds and soy (that’s what my dad calls it) and by being cautious when buying clothes and beauty products. If that’s not reason enough, I don’t know what is.

There are so many more benefits and just random things (like the poop example) I have noticed since going vegan but I feel that these 6 are super important to share. If anyone is vegan or wants to go vegan please feel free to ask me more questions or let me know what you noticed after going plant-based!

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

CUPCAKES

Alright, friends. Living in California and being vegan is one thing. There are vegan shops, cafes, restaurants, and Whole Foods on every other block. In Chicago, on the other hand, vegan food is a bit more hard to come by. Yes, I can get my fresh fruit, veg, and yes my ever so needed protein at Target, Trader Joe’s, and our sole Whole Foods. However, when it comes to sweets, and meals at restaurants that are vegan that’s another story.

For my birthday, I mentioned I was going to make a vegan cake. Yet, on the day of my birthday our gas went out and I was unable to use my stove. Wanting some sort of cake or cupcake because what kind of birthday is it without cake? My mom and I ventured to Whole Foods to see if we could find some vegan cake. They only had gluten-free cakes 😦 BUT they had vegan cupcakes. Naturally, I bought 3 to have one then and then save some for later. It was not only one of the best vegan desserts I have ever eaten but any dessert I have ever eaten. Also, it turns out that the cupcakes are made right here in Chicago.

This morning, my mom and I made the drive there, got there right as they opened and got 6 cupcakes. 3 vegan and gluten-free and 3 regulars (I’m the only vegan in the house).

 

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The outside of Swirlz. Very quaint but super adorable

 

Swirlz (the name of the cupcake place) has flavors of the day. They mainly are nonvegan and filled with gluten but they also make gluten-free ones, and vegan and gluten-free ones. Today’s selection in the vegan and gluten-free department were cookie dough and vanilla. I’m typically not too keen on cookie dough or vanilla. I’m more of a chocolate kind of gal. However, upon returning home, and opening the super cute box the cupcakes were housed in, I have fallen in love with cookie dough cupcakes and the Swirlz cupcake shop in general. The cupcake was sort of like a chocolate chip cupcake with a dollop of cookie dough in it and then topped with vanilla frosting and a cookie dough piece.

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The box
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The cupcakes: Mine are the bottom 3

The shop was super adorable and I am definitely feeling a second trip on a different day for another cupcake type. 😉

PS, I highly recommend this shop to any of my followers who are ever in my neck of the woods. Vegan or not, their cupcakes are to die for.

They are located at:  705 w. Belden, Chicago, IL 60614

Their website can be found here

If any of you have been there or are planning on making a trip, let me know.

Alicia

 

 

Coffee Shop Romance

I fall in love with every handsome pair of eyes I come into contact with.

When I’m not in class or asleep I’m typically in a coffee shop. It’s not a habit I’m willing to break. It’s been going on for the last 5 months and probably won’t quit once I transfer to ASU or embark on my future career.

They have a very calming aura, one that I can’t seem to find anywhere else, and they have become much of a second home for me.

When I’m annoyed with my roommate, want to get out of the dorm and just away from everyone I know, I turn to coffee shops.

They provide me with a solace and safe haven away from judgement and they make me extremely happy to be there. No matter which one I go to, I love every second of my time there.

Whenever I embark on my day long journey to the coffee shop of my choice, I always come into contact with a masterpiece. I always want to go up to these boys’ parents and congratulate them on creating such a sight.

From the glances back and forth, to the slight smiles when I knock my phone off the table,  I fall more in love with this person.

However, after hours of the unspoken conversation, one of must depart.

And I begin the wait until my next adventure.

And the next pair of eyes to fall in love with.

Alicia

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