Sunday, October 30, 2011

Running, Co. Mayo, and Little Inspirations

While this gray weather makes running harder to do, it is positively the most fun to lounge around in.

that's what i've been doing today. lounging.
luckily the clocks were set back today. what a nice surprise! i woke up, did upper body exercises, had my own lazy-limited college adaption of Oh She Glows' Vegan Overnight Oats, accompanied with pancakes i have on hand in the freezer, then made cookie dough to bake before i travel to London, then New York at the end of the week.

i am overwhelmingly excited. 
those are the pancakes from a few days ago, spelt and garbanzo bean pancakes, with jam, pumpkin butter, white chocolate peanut putter, chopped almonds and cherries, and ground flax and golgi berries.
oh so good. 

that brings me to a little pre-New Year's resolution i am making. publicly, in hopes i actually stick to it.

now don't laugh...

resolution: i will not eat jam or almond butter out of the jar. anymore. 
(notice i said nothing about peanut butter ;) )

when i go to New York we are going to Peanut Butter and Co., the company that makes peanut butter that i can eat out of the jar in a day. when i paced myself intensely it lasted a whole three days. i'm obsessed.

another resolution i am wanting to make:
i plan on taking up reading, or sketching in replace of eating.

i am trying very hard to be proactive about my eating. i think about it too much and eat out of pure boredom. 

speaking of boredom, i have some fantastic pictures from my weekend in County Mayo with my friend Laura to keep you guys from getting bored. for those of you wondering, yes, i still absolutely adore Ireland, and this trip out to the countryside where Laura lives was a great reminder it isn't the country that is driving this depression and fierce desire to leave, it is school, and the drinking/partying "college experience."

all i want to do is have dinner parties, bake for school functions, eat tv dinners with my significant other, go to coffee with my grown-up friends, and form a power walk gang with my gal-pals. 

haha i did always want to grow up...

just a gorgeous picture of a lake i walked to

Laura's dog, Kip, came exploring with me the first day while Laura was at work

what would a trip to the Irish countryside be without sheep!

we got to go riding in the rain :)

i found this poor little guy on the side of the road. his body was rock solid, probably from the cold, and being on the road for awhile. so i picked him up, and put him on a nice grass bed on the roadside. then i made a cross, and collected flowers. 
Laura's house. isn't it GORGEOUS? her parents knew the owner and used to come by when they were 19. they returned 20 years later and it was a wreck that no one was living in. they have been fixing it up since :)

road to Laura's

i had done no baking up to this point, so we went crazy! a vegan, wheat-free pumpkin pie with fresh pumpkin! the face is made out of chai frosting :) 

then, we made gingerbread men. wheat-free, and vegan! YUM

for better or worse, food makes me extremely happy :) imagine being a professional food stylist - just taking pictures of good food ALL DAY! so many fun jobs out there.

so yesterday my plan was to go for a nice long run. it has been gorgeous and crisp and sunny since Monday, but when i woke up it was raining. i left my window open for about a minute, and it looked like this:

i guess i slept through the sun. 

but after breakfast and working on homework for a bit, the rain stopped.

and it was a beautiful fall day again and i went for a nice jog.

and i got to skype with my sister for awhile, which is always wonderful. 
and i watched more newest past-time. 
and i finished an assignment given to us in gibberish, that has sparked a long conversation of the Psychology facebook page of everyone helping each other decipher the meaning. 

i thought that the point of Research and Methodology was to be clear and concise so that experiments can be replicated.
this assignment can't even be completed.
haha but i did my best. i still have an English essay to whittle away at today. 

the day today is a bit cloudy, and i have made the executive decision to make today a rest day. i don't know about any of you, but rest days cause me extreme anxiety. i have the mindset if i take one day off from dripping with sweat, my body will explode into obesity. rest days are important i recognize, and i am trying to focus on being healthier, because being skinny is consistently feeling like a lost cause. especially with a thyroid that simply will not work. 
but it is okay, ill take today off, and i will run again Monday through Friday. 

Friday my dad comes :) and i wanted to go here, but they seem to be closed 24hours a day. so The Cedar Tree is where we will probably go to dinner, because ever since going to Mamouns in New York, i have been obsessed with falafels. it breaks my heart there are no cheap food places around here, i miss good street food.

so you can imagine i am excited for New York :)

(side note) did you know "Pumped Up Kicks" is about a school shooting? for real. listen carefully to the lyrics you are chanting when you sing along...

inspiration one is a quote that i first heard in Dinotopia. i know it didn't originate there, but i LOVE that movie.
this is proof of my love of that movie, it is how i got asked to Prom :)

the quote is this:
Eat to Live, don't Live to Eat.
i am trying to remind myself of that constantly.

the next thing is a list of adjectives i thought of after i went running the other day.

when i run i feel...
  • accomplished
  • relieved
  • simple
  • cleaned-out
  • healthy
  • zen-type tired
  • content
  • calm
  • proud
  • like i have done something for the day
  • at peace with all my internal pain
  • loose
  • soft 
  • brave
so that's all then. i am trying to only do posts when i actually have things to say, or pictures. i will add on that i AM going to run Monday through Friday. if i say it here maybe i will stick to it...

p.s. i took the picture that is my background for this blog. i'm pretty proud of how perfect it fits this whole idea.  

once i bake the cookies, if i like them enough i will post the link. hopefully this isn't boring and you want to stay tuned, and thanks for reading guys!


Friday, October 28, 2011

To Begin

I have never had a blog before, so bear with me.

What this is:
-an attempt to help me get a hold of my life by talking to myself, and forcing thought on my interpretations of life because of public display
-baby steps towards the hope of eventually having a gorgeous blog like Oh She Glows, check it out if you haven't - it's inspirational
-a way to share recipes and food. because i love food

-a way to inspire me to work harder at purifying and helping my body, by noting progress and taking responsibility for my slips and falls instead of indulging in them (most specifically in the realm of exercise and eating)

-provide help through my struggles to others who may have similar issues going on
-a way to be creative and do more productive internet activity than facebook
-a way to distract myself in Neuroscience...which i am currently tying viciously away in now
-a nice little umbrella update for anyone who wants to know about my life, and that i am too lazy to answer in detail
-a way to track a road of helping this crazy vegan figure out her place in the world

Okay. Now then.
a little about me in relation to this blog.
i am vegan, and i add that in the title for a few reasons:
  • firstly, veganism has been a passionate part of my life for little over a year and a half. i went through harassment due to being vegan in high school - pretty unbelievable right? but as hard as it was to stay strong against meat being thrown in my face, and countless jokes and images about killing and eating animals, ultimately it made veganism a part of my identity. it because a life choice i defended and found comfort in when people were cruel to me about it
    . veganism also helped me to see how immature such a large majority of high school seniors are.
  • hopefully adding vegan in the blog name will help people find it when they search for recipes on the internet.
  • whenever i see the word "vegan" i take a sort of comfort out of the word. i can only speculate this is because it makes me feel a sense of community to others who have chosen a cruelty-free diet and lifestyle. perhaps that will be the case for someone else.
  • i am damn proud to call myself a vegan. i don't think i ever tell someone that i'm vegan without a smile creeping onto my face :)
below is Persian Love Cake i made with my sister :)

and above is Kale, Mexican Tofu Scramble, Maple Smoked Tempeh, Mochi Waffles with Chocolate Almond Hazelnut Butter, and a Peach Muffin - all for Father's Day

so i got the vegan part down.

i am, to say the least, a little lost:
  • but really, what 18-year-old isn't? my problem was always that i never allowed myself to be lost. ever since the age of 6 when i decided i wanted to be a vet, i have always known what i wanted to do with my life. and my steadfast, absolute knowledge of what i have wanted to do with my life has done a 180 degree turn every two years or so.
  • my current predicament? i decided i wanted to major in psychology to be a therapist for serial killers, or schizophrenics. i chose to major in psychology because i figured even if i changed my job quest, psychology is remarkably fascinating. while i still love psychology, i currently find myself at school 4659.2 miles from home.
  • why you may ask? well i had these grand plans to attend the University of Oregon with my boyfriend (now ex) at the beginning of my senior year of high school. i had established i did not want to go to college, and would rather own a vegan cafe of my own (prior to that senior year i had toyed with being an art teacher). but my parents said i must attend college. in fact, i think my dad's speech went like this, "i will not invest in a cafe whose owner did not get a college degree. where are you going to get other investors?" so i was going to go there and get a history degree because, in my high school experience, history teachers are universal geniuses and the smartest individuals.
in my experience...
  • on a whim, i also applied - via the prompting of EVERYONE i knew who was either in affiliation or knew something about it - to Reed College in Portland, Oregon, about 20 minutes from my house. Reed is an exceptional school of 1400 brilliant hippies - one that outranked GPA and scores on the SAT and ACT. but i sent in my application with a "Why Reed" poem instead of essay, and then basically forgot about the slim chance i would have to get in and focus on a wonderful college experience with the love of my life.
  • then i decided to major in psychology and help people no one else wanted, or thought could be helped. thank you Criminal Minds and The New Asylums.

  • then my boyfriend and i broke up. my friends thought the world was going to end and i would go back to being suicidal. but it was a calm decision i made, and after i decided that U of O was too mainstream for me. i had forgotten about Reed.
  • so i applied to University of Toronto because Canada sounded different, but not too different. and i had friends applying there.
  • a epiphany followed: why couldn't i apply to my favorite place in the world for college? i had no one to hold me back! so i neglected to finish my U of T app and applied to Trinity College, Dublin, University College Dublin, and University of Limerick (which is actually called "stabtown." fun fact).
Pictures of Trinity this Fall
Arches at Trinity

  • i got in to all three, so we made a trip to travel to Ireland :)
  • right before we left, i received an envelope from Reed. when i opened it, confetti spilled out, and when i got on to my email a "congratulations" video had been sent to me. that complicated things.
  • we visited Dublin and i decided on Trinity College. everyone called me brave for venturing so far, and most called me crazy for turning down Reed.
  • so here i am at Trinity. the system in Europe is different from the states, because you apply as your intended major and take only classes relevant to that major the next four years. so currently i am in psychology, taking Cognitive Psych, Intro to Psych, Research and Methodology, and Neuroscience. i am more of a psychoanalysis fan myself...
  • and i am currently, drowning in frustration, restlessness, and deep bouts of unhappiness. my depression is starting to resurface, and i am trying to figure out what to do with my life.
  • i say "lost" vegan, because i am currently back in my mindset of not wanting to be in college. i am very homesick, i'll admit, and my sister is having a hard time without me as i am without her which tugs on my heart. but beyond that, i just want to work. i want to take a gap year, or get a job and finish school online. school - even as i was entering Trinity and for the first time excited for college - has been a "get it over with" mentality. i am no longer content with that. i don't see the point in spending the next four years of my life in that kind of zone. the "college for the 'college experience'" argument may ensue. well i do not drink (and i'm in Ireland, right?), and the appeal of hooking up with random strangers...yeah it never got through to me. this seems to be a huge aspect of college life. and college "activities" you may ask? well, most people use here use drink as an companion to those too. it gets pretty damn old (don't let that give you the wrong opinion of the Irish. everyone i have met here is absolutely lovely, and i adore my roommates. it is just an aspect of college culture mixed with alcohol legality that gets to me). also: i never liked these "crazy kid" activities. ever since i was little i couldn't wait to grow up. never college age grow up, but adult. responsible, low-key, working adult.
Well, sorry about that...
if you actually got through all of that text, i'll assume you either find me interesting, easy to relate to, you skimmed most of it and just read the larger words, or you know me and either feel a sense of obligation, genuine interest, or it is simply more informative than facebook stalking my cryptic statuses.

but there you have it.
a little lost vegan struggling with college issues. to stay or leave.
keep reading and i promise i will post recipes, and hopefully better rants. i may also let you into my world of body issues, fierce depression, and my philosophies :)
because i want to use this blog as a helping crutch for that, but also a way to keep me honest and (perhaps a bit) rational.

thanks for reading guys :)

p.s. these little beauties are my latest college-limited baking product :) cherry-pumpkin scones from here
just pulled them out of the oven as i am about to publish this post