challenging

We are mid week of week 2 in the 30 Day Vegan Challenge, almost halfway through. I have to say, I don't really miss the meat portion of this challenge all that much. My appetite has been more than met. I am far from starving, but I miss cheese. A lot.

I forgot how much I liked smoothies. Connor has been particularly helpful is blending up frozen fruit, soy milk, orange juice and peanut butter. We made one for Steve at the end of last week and he liked it so much he didn't need the "to go cup" we had prepared it in for him. Connor is good for a small cup himself, which is far better than the breakfast he typically has. Caroline has not fully accepted this new breakfast idea. With  a smoothie under my belt, I am good until lunch and they are so yummy. I made a cup of coffee last week with soy milk and it was only ehhh, but I think I could learn to drink my coffee a bit darker, or skip it all together.

I'm struggling a bit sometimes with lunch. Hummus wraps with fresh veggies during the week, some fruit, maybe some nuts. I'm on the go in the car and I loathe spending money on lunch, so this has been a bit of a challenge. Fluffernutters have been a welcome treat. I'm planning to use the handy chart the author provides for making a grain salad to bring next week a few days. Weekends have been easier because I can make a bigger, more exciting sandwich and I have just been to the grocery store, so the ingredients are fresher and fancier. You would have thought I was eating gold on Saturday with my hummus, sprout, cucumber, tomato and avocado flat bread.

Dinners have been amazing! I've been skeptical every single night. I brace myself for Steve's scoff or starving eyes. I chop and stir and hold my breath and every single night he has been not only a willing participant, but he tells me how good it is. Even if he doesn't always mean it, it helps to hear. I made a bean chili last night with peppers and onions and corn, for the boy who asks me if I can find a good recipe for a meat loves chili, sans beans. I planned to get two meals from it, but we enjoyed it so much that I think we will need to eat it over baked potatoes to get another dinner from it.

The kids have totally embraced dinner, though Connor's diapers say we need to start rationing his bean intake. Kid loves beans! We put together some amazing black bean burritos this week. I tweeted that they enjoyed them so much I was awestruck. We have a taco night occasionally and the kids usually get on board with making tacos with the various ingredients, but this was different. I lined up bowls of fresh toppings on the table; shredded Boston lettuce, fresh salsa, cheese for the kids and Steve, and fresh made guacamole. Caroline scrunched her nose up at the green spread, but asked for seconds and thirds. GUACAMOLE?? I had to practically fight her off to get the last spoonful. Last night while she ate some chicken and tots with corn she asked me if we can have "that dinner we had before" again. I saved the extra beans (seasoned with cumin, s/p, and chili powder) and I am going to whip up another batch of guacamole because are you kidding me, bean burritos Caroline?!?

So thoughts - this challenge is HARD yo. I miss cheese. I haven't been 100% faithful to the no dairy component of my challenge, especially with the Halloween candy. I'm trying not to deny myself something I really want because I don't want to become discouraged or resent that I am doing this. Good choices when possible. Steve has really surprised me with his enthusiasm and support, except for last Thursday when he brought home an entire 3 foot long Italian sub from the FSU/BC tailgate and asked me if I wanted a slice. I did. and it was amazing. The kids have been much more open to trying new things. Connor loves plain ol' seasoned beans so much. Caroline asking for a second round of bean burritos. Are these my kids? my picky Caroline and my meat lover Connor?

We're saving money too. Sure, I'm making a trip to Trader Joe's each week for some more wallet friendly vegan options (their frozen brown and jasmine rice, bean dip, multigrain tortillas, soy milk, spiced pecans, organge flavored cranberries). Even with that extra trip we are still spending about 30 dollars less each week.

Do I think it will stick? Honestly, no. I didn't expect it to, but I think I have my family's blessing to incorporate these new meals and options into our everyday. That's a win in my book.

1 comment:

  1. my cow-dairy allergic sister highly recommends hazelnut milk for coffee. she said rice milk is a good second place contender.

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