My life has a superb cast but I can't figure out the plot.
~ Ashleigh Brilliant

Monday, March 7, 2011

Randomness Rules! A hodgepodge post

Random hodgepodge indeed... in the following post may I present some scrumptious soup, vegan values (the $ kind), an appreciated award and some bodacious blogs!

But first, a brief (no, really!) update...

As of yesterday our pellet stove is fixed and income taxes filed (BW is a rock star), and as of today the new beadboard ceilings and trim are installed at last. So now I'm in the throes of bouncing between spring cleaning our kitchen (a chore that takes me several days because I'm obsessively thorough), and spackling, sanding, touch-up painting, and scrubbing the guest room walls and ceilings so we can move everything back into them this weekend.

But all work and no play makes Laloofah a dull (and very cranky) girl, I've had a crappy cold since Sunday morning, BW is having to work very late tonight (*scowl*), and stuff I want to blog about has been piling up alarmingly - all of which I'm using as an excuse to take a blogging break!

End of update, now onto the scrumptious soup!

You probably think, judging from my most recent recipe posts, that all we eat is soup and muffins around here. Though I'd be lying if I said I couldn't happily subsist on those for quite a while, we really have been eating other nummies but I've either blogged about them before, didn't bother to take photos, or did bother to take photos and they're in that growing to-be-blogged-about pile I mentioned. But we really do love soup and eat a lot of it during the winter (Sept 14 - July 10 in these parts). ;-)

So yesterday we tried a new recipe for African Kale and Yam Soup that I'd found last week on Happy Herbivore. It was easy to make, quick to cook, brilliantly healthy and fantastically flavorful! Colorfully pretty, too...

Our African Kale & Yam Soup from Happy Herbivore

We didn't deviate one bit from the original recipe, nor will we the next time(s) we make it... but there is one little bitty thing we'll do differently next time. BW's the one who added the curry while I was working in the basement, he didn't know which of our four curry blends to use, and he just happened to pick the hottest one. Since he loves hot spices, I'm not necessarily buying his "aw shucks, I didn't know it was the hottest one, it was an accident" schtick, even if he is a rock star! Anyway, you can make this soup as spicy-hot or mild as you want, depending on your curry. Next time we'll use a half-and-half mix of our mildest and our hottest, because the hottest - made by a local woman from India who roasts and grinds her own spices - has a lot of flavor along with the heat.

Today one of my favorite blogs, Vegan Backpacker, announced a new project they've launched called Vegan Cuts, a membership web site that will offer special deals on vegan food, clothing, body care, accessories, services and more by weekly email. Their goal is to sign up 1,000 members during the first month and start sending out the vegan dealios by late April. All you need to provide is your name, email address, state or province and gender. The person who refers the most new members during their registration period wins a special prize to be announced later! (It's probably going to be an all-expenses paid trip around the world,* so please click on the above link or below image and register today and if I win I'll take all of you with me!) :-)

*Yeah, I totally made that up. They are giving a prize, but I have no idea what it will be and have a .000000512% chance of winning. But wouldn't my idea be awesome?! And I would bring you all with me, honest! :-)

And finally, the sweet and delightful Andrea (even when she's allegedly crochety crotchety), who is always dishing up delicious goodies on her wonderful blog, surprised the hootenanny out of me on Friday by dishing up this lovely award there too!

There I was, just reading along about her Thai cooking class, drooling over her Thai food photos, studying the recipe she shared for vegan Tom Kah (it's a soup, so you know I was on high alert), and wondering where in Cowpie, Wyoming I was going to find stalks of lemongrass when I got to the part where she bestowed this award on eight relatively recently discovered blogs, one of which was this humble jumble known as Mehitable Days! That was such a fun surprise! (Thank you again, Andrea!)

My responsibilities in accepting this award are as follows:

Graciously thank and link back to the giver (✔✔✔)

Borrow a sparkly Vera Wang gown and fetch my tiara from storage for the awards ceremony (oops, wait - I'm having a hairy bad day. I mean a bad hair day! Hang on, let me finish my grooming... Ah, now I'm ready! Umm, wait, I forgot my Prozac. Okay, now I'm all set!) ()

Share seven things about myself (wait, again?) ()

Pass the award on to 15 recently discovered blogs ( - sorta)

So here are seven more bits o' personal trivia (in case that first photo wasn't TMI, lol!)...

1) I have a terrible time giving directions to someone, even when I know exactly how to get to where they're going (it would be so much easier for me to have them just scootch over so I can drive them there!), and I have no sense of direction in a town. So of course I married an AF navigator, who is always telling me to "turn east" or "head north." Like this means anything to me! Why can't he say, "turn left" or "go straight" like any normal person? (Despite my spazoid ways in civilization, somehow I've always been able to find my way in the woods, even without landmarks, signs or trails! Mystifying.)

2) My first companion animal was an invisible fox who lived under my bed the year I turned three.

3) I once stayed in an earthship B&B outside of Taos, NM. Very cool!! It was 10 years ago and they only had 2 guest rooms (they've added on since), and they happily and deliciously accommodated us with vegan breakfasts and snacks. Someday I hope to get to stay in a yurt, a houseboat, and a castle (my tastes in lodging are eclectic!)

4) I sat on "Tonto's" lap when I was five. Jay Silverheels was the guest of honor that year at the Rocky Boy Powwow my grandparents in Montana took me to every summer. A big Lone Ranger fan, I was the only non-Native American and the last kid standing in line that night to meet him. When he asked me where I lived and I squeaked out a timid, "New Jersey," he said, "New Jersey!" and hoisted me up on his lap to continue our conversation, none of which I remember. I was too much in awe (or maybe I was too busy wondering why New Jersey was such a big deal to Tonto!) :-)

5) I have no cell phone or dishwasher, don't watch TV (we have no cable nor satellite and just use our set to watch DVDs), and with very few exceptions, I always hang my laundry up to dry, indoors and out.

6) Unlike many women, I don't like shoes. I detest having to shop for them, and don't like wearing them. I have a pair of hiking boots and a pair of sneakers ~ the rest of my footwear consists of slippers and various colorful and often sparkly flip flops.

7) When my mother's obstetrician (who she swears looked just like Merv Griffin, which she found unnerving since she had a crush on ol' Merv) informed her she was pregnant, he predicted I'd be a girl and that I'd be born on Jan 3rd at 3:00 AM. I was born Jan 3rd at 2:58 AM and have tried to be at least a couple minutes early to everything ever since. :-)

I didn't think I'd be able to come up with 15 recently discovered blogs, but I did, by cheating. I've followed Vegan Elder for several months, but as a lurker. We only recently started exchanging comments from time to time, and it's been most enjoyable. Happy Herbivore and Zen Habits are blogs I used to follow quite a while ago, but decided one day I was following far more blogs than I could possibly keep up with and pared my list way down. Now I don't sweat it (too much) if I can't keep up with all the blogs I follow and so have recently added them back to my blogroll along with several new delightful finds...

And an extra One Lovely Blog Award goes to:
a lovely blog I'd just learned of in the past 48 hours.
How's that for "recently discovered?" :-)

It was such fun just discovering that I'd been given this award when I visited Andrea's latest post that I'm going to follow her example and just let these recipients discover it for themselves! Trouble is, a few of these bloggers don't know me or my blog since I haven't left them any comments yet, so they'll really be surprised if they stumble upon this list randomly, won't they? Randomness rules! ;-)

I thought this award was suitable for framing so I put a border around mine, but here's the border-free version...


  1. So glad to hear your stove is up and running! That's a good start to the week. :) Sounds like you're making some great progress on your projects too.

    You met Tonto? That's cool. I used to have an enormous crush on the Lone Ranger...not sure why or how, but I did.

    Love all your facts! (Though I'm a long-time fan, I think I knew a couple of them already.)

    I'm the same with directions...I always make it sound like the destination is miles and miles away and very complicated to get to;I never know street names, so have to give directions by landmarks and goofy things I notice along the way that may not be so obvious to others.

    That kale and yam stew looks so healthy and delicious! Wow, so much in this post...I'll be back.

  2. "turn east" or "head north"


    i like vegan elder too!! he seems really nice.

    number 2(or was it three?) a little fox friend?:) that is so cute!!that was my favorite fact:)

  3. Rose ~ Me too! And none too soon... it's been darned cold and snowy here lately! And yes, progress is being made - if I don't lift my head above the current task at hand and see all that remains to be done, I can keep myself from wigging out, even! ;-)

    Perhaps it was the mask? ;-) Of the two of them, I always thought Tonto was the cutest. Remember "The Wild, Wild West?" I had a big crush on James West.

    "A long-time fan" - I love that! :-)))) (That's either me smiling really big, or me with lots of extra chins from eating too many muffins! LOL)

    I love your description of how you give directions - it sounds just like me!! And that's a comfort! :-) I never pay attention to street names, so I'm always stumped when I'm asked for directions.

    I bet you'd really like that soup!

    There is a lot in this post, and would you believe I had two other things in it besides? I decided it had gotten way too unwieldy and took them out to post later. I was just having too much fun! Way more fun than spackling nail holes, that's for sure!

    DD ~ Does your shuddering mean you too would struggle with my husband's cardinal directions? (These comments are making me feel better and better!) :-)

    Vegan Elder does seem very nice, and very bright and articulate, too. And doesn't he find the best videos?

    I'm glad you enjoyed my little fox friend fact. :-) Later, when I had grown tired of no one else being able to see "my" fox, I took to wearing a knee sock on my arm, which I would then cradle in my other arm. That was my fox then, and that's how I carried her around! :-) Apparently it made an impression on my mother (or worried her half sick, dunno!), because she started buying me stuffed animal foxes whenever she'd find one!

  4. hahahah yea our mothers went through a lot it sounds like. id VERY carefully wrap up my rubber iguana and carry him around in a basket or in my arms, put leashes on it and "take it for walks" one time the neighbor asked if she "could see my little baby" and i guess i very solemnly, unwrapped "iggy-liz" :) but qsock on the arm, didnt think of that one!! thats nice that your mom tried to improve your sock pet with a stuffed animal.

    im shuddering because of those horrible directions(i say that fully aware that they are excellent directions for the sharp, sophisticated driver) whats wrong with pointing huh? lololol

    and i forgot to say congratulations on your award!! there was so much in this post i didnt mean to forget anything!

  5. What a fun post, Laurie! It sounds like things are coming together a bit around your house, although I'm sorry to hear you have a cold! I just developed my first ever UTI this weekend, right after I finally got over my cold. Ugh! lol

    The stew looks so good. We make a peanut yam stew, which is similar, but I've got to try this one now. We'll put some Thai peppers in it for spice. Yum! I like my spice level at "sun" level. :)

    The seven things you shared are all so interesting! It's amazing that you were born just 2 seconds from the predicted date & time. Wow!

    I'm horrible at finding my way around, too, which is something I fear about moving to a new place. If it weren't for Mike, I would have gotten lost in the neighborhood near our home while walking the dogs when we first moved to this house.... :o

  6. I agree, Tonto was really much more handsome than least it seemed that way w/o being able to see his face! I don't remember James West though.

    You must have looked so cute (or crazy LOL) walking around with your knee socks on your arms and your dear little fox friend. :)

    Your blog award winners are such a fun-looking and eclectic group...I'm looking forward to visiting them all in near future.

  7. What a cool blog! I just came here from Rose's place and saw your Mom had a crush on Merv. So did mine! I think it was several years after his death that she finally caught on that nothing could ever have happened between them.

  8. DD ~ Oh, I love your "iggy-liz" story! I can just picture a wee you, solemnly unwrapping your rubber iguana for your neighbor to admire! That's too precious. (The "solemnly" especially charms me!) Did your neighbor have any idea you would be unveiling an iguana rather than a Cabbage Patch doll? :-)

    I don't think my mom upgraded my sock fox with stuffed animal foxes out of niceness... I think it was out of concern! LOL Yes, we probably caused our moms more than a few head-scratching (if not outright "OMG") moments.

    Yeah, what's wrong with good old-fashioned pointing? Because BW will also pull the "turn east" nonsense when he's sitting right next to me! It works if the sun is rising or setting at the time, but "turn left" or pointing will work ALL the time. Maybe he thinks some day it will sink in and I'll master directions like a navigator, but I can guarantee it ain't gonna happen. I was apparently born with that part of my brain missing, and he needs to accept that and move on. :-)

    Thank you for your congratulations, that was sweet! I did cram quite a bit into this post, huh? Thanks for returning for an encore comment! :-)

    Molly ~ Thanks, Molly! I felt so much better yesterday I thought I'd kicked it, but I feel so yukky today (I've gone through nearly an entire box of tissue - recycled, of course! :-) - this afternoon alone) that I cancelled tomorrow's massage, and I have to feel awfully lousy to do that! I haven't had a cold in over a decade, I'd forgotten how thrilling they are. Heh. I think one of the contractors gave it to me because he called in sick on Monday and I hadn't been around anyone but them.

    I can't believe you got your first-ever UTI! Josie wants to know if you did that as a show of solidarity. :-) I hope you're better soon! I've never had one, but I hear they're no day at the beach.

    Funny you called that soup a stew, because that's what BW said it should be called! It really was thick and chunky and much more stew-like than soup-like. "Sun level" spice, lol! BW will love that. :-) Another reason you'll feel more at home in the Southwest!

    I'm glad you found my 7 factoids interesting, I have a hard time thinking of ones that I can relate in just a couple of sentences. Most of mine come with long stories ("Gee, that's a surprise!" the crowd mutters sarcastically. LOL) Mom said "Dr. Merv" like to play that little game of predicting the gender, time and date of birth of a baby with each new pregnancy. I wonder if he always got that close?

    And I wonder why there seem to be so many of us who are "directionally impaired?" Joanne and I both have bad senses of direction, so we're quite the pair when we go exploring somewhere new together. When we went to Boulder she brought along her GPS! :-) BW's sense of direction is uncanny. I can just imagine if I were the UPS driver in the family - they'd have to send search parties out for me every night!

  9. Laloofah -- Hurray for you -- your words are music to my ears:

    "I have no cell phone or dishwasher, don't watch TV (we have no cable nor satellite and just use our set to watch DVDs), and with very few exceptions, I always hang my laundry up to dry, indoors and out"

    All this is great -- barbara

  10. Rose ~ Well I always went for the swarthy guys. :-) If you ever watched The Wild, Wild West, this picture will remind you what James West looked like.

    LOL - I vote "crazy," but hopefully it was in an endearing way. :-)

    They are quite an eclectic group of blogs. I know you're already familiar with some of them - I found Cadry's Kitchen and Melomeals through your blog, and I know you know Vegan Fox, and Count Your Chicken ("Johnny Nutcase's" blog) is the one I'd sent you recently, despite us both having blogrolls that reach to Greenland and back, because I knew you'd love it! I'd thought about putting a brief description with each one on my list, but then decided it might be more fun if people just figured out for themselves what they're about by paying each one a visit. :-)

    Shen ~ Thank you! I always enjoy your comments on various blogs, you have such a fun, wry and pithy wit! (I love saying pithy, thanks for giving me an opportunity!) :-)

    LOL about your mom's rather tardy - dare I say postmortem - reckoning about her chances with Merv! Makes me wonder at what point (if ever) my mother finally lost hope?

    My mom also had a huge crush on Dr. Kildare. I'm sure she'd have traded Dr. Merv for him in a heartbeat. Nearly two decades later when I was in college, I'd get together with some chums to watch the mini-series The Thornbirds, during which my best friend Inez developed a mad, rabid crush on Richard Chamberlain. It was just so Circle of Life for me!

  11. Barbara ~ :-)

    You'd love that earthship B&B too, I'll bet! And you'll love that we just sold a big digital TV antenna we'd bought a few years ago but never put up. We'd bought it because we "needed" it to receive our local stations in Billings, Rapid City and Casper when everything went digital, but then we decided... why? So it's just been hanging up in the garage all this time till we put an ad in the paper and sold it yesterday. But that's not the part you'll love - the part you'll love is that when the woman who bought it, Penny, spied my carousel clothesline sitting in the corner, she got all excited and wanted to know where I'd found it because she's been wanting one. She also prefers to hang her clothes up to dry, indoors and out! So I took her in the house to show her my Amish made floor clothes dryer (we have the large size), which was deployed in the living room with socks and towels drying on it. Penny wants one of those now, too - and she doesn't have a dishwasher either, and she said she had no idea why they were bothering to buy the antenna because they almost never watch TV. :-) (She also said she has no sense of direction either, so we decided we must be twins separated at birth, and how "Dr. Merv" failed to predict THAT, I'll never know!) ;-)

    One of these days I plan to do a post about my Amish clothes dryer, I've had it in the works for over a year but have never gotten around to finishing it! I need to do that!

  12. This post was so chock full of stuff, I won't be able to do it justice in the 5 minutes I have left to my lunch.

    In general, I wanted to say that I liked the hodgepodge and found it all very diverting and entertaining.

    Specifically, I'll just have to comment on a few of my favorite parts.

    I enjoyed how you did the "my responsibilities included" part with with links to the fun photos and commentary. As a non-blogger it was entertaining as well as informative. You'd look just like that last photo for sure!!

    I knew you liked foxes alot but I nevr knew it started with an invisible one when you were three!

    The story of Tonto was great fun - you do have all the luck!

    Glad for the update and for it being good news on the stove, taxes and ceiling part - YAY!

    So sorry to cut this short - I have to WORK!! :-(

  13. Thank you for writing about the blog, I greatly appreciate it. I look forward to exploring the other blogs.

    Ahem, however, this vulkan mind-melt thingee is getting spooky. Jay Silverheels was (and is) one of my heros from way way back. He was ever so much cooler than that Lone Ranger character. And you got to sit on his lap...should we ever meet I want your autograph. :-)

  14. I signed up for Vegan Cuts through your link. Good luck on winning! :::smile:::

    Loved looking at all of your favorite blogs. That's how I find most of my favorite blogs ... checking out the lists of others.

    The facts about yourself were very fun to read. I like finding out little known fun things about people.

  15. You see, I did think that I would show solidarity to Josie with the UTI! Poor girl, now I know how she must feel. It's awful!

    You're lucky not to have gotten a cold for so long! I usually get one or two a year, but that's nothing compared to the bronchitis I used to get at least a few times a year, so I really can't complain.

    Thanks goodness for GPS's. I love ours. :)

  16. Oh my goodness!!!! I have visited this blog entry probably 10 times looking at stuff and clicking on the blogs you mention and I just now saw that you mentioned my blog! Thank you so much. That was so sweet of you to do. WOW. I think I'm blushing! I feel very honored. Thank you! :)

  17. Yeah, the swarthy guys! Unlike DD, I like dudes with luxurious head's of hair...not that that means they're swarthy, but anyway...ironically I married a baldy, which has made me come round to thinking the baldies are pretty darn cute too! (Think Sean Connery (well, he's almost bald, lol).

    Fun to see Shen here! Welcome Shen!!

  18. Thank you! :D I am SO glad you commented on my blog today so that I could see this post and see that you gave me the 'Lovely Blog Award'!! I feel truly honored. Not only were your comments on my blog today amazing, but this just adds to the amazing day you've made for me. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    Your blog is fantastic! I've been looking for blogs where people write about vegan food and important issues (well, a blog a bit like mine, to be honest) for some time now so I will definitely subscribe via RSS!

    I'm not sure if you saw or not, but I did respond to your comments on my travel posts if you'd like to check those out! Also, that soup looks great! I would absolutely love to make it except that I can't find kale here! Which is weird because it's huge in England and I had just within the last couple of years discovered and started cooking with kale, but I can't find it any markets or grocery stores here.

    Your #7 thing about you is really something. That's some prediction!

    Okay, I feel like I've written too much already! Thank you, again, and I will try to have that post up hopefully next week. I just got the Stylish Blogger Award where I had to write seven things about me so I'm going to need to rack my brain for some more things about me, ha!

  19. Jo ~ Oh I know, there's no way this was a good post to try to get through on a short-and-oft-interrupted-lunch-break! That's what happens when I have lots to blog about and no time to do it, so that when I do grab some time I tend to gunch a bunch of stuff into a single post! :-) Yet believe it or not, I showed some actual restraint by deleting two other items from this one to save for a future post. :-)

    I guess our animal guides and totems show up early! Vistara told me she remembers dreaming about wolves as a very young child, and the wolf has always been a powerful totem and guide for her.

    I'm so glad you clicked on those links to the "tiara" photos! I think most people missed them, and they were my favorite part of this post to work on - I was giggling the whole time. :-) I'm very sorry that your optometrist gave you the wrong contact lens prescription though, you'd better get that taken care of. But as long as you're not seeing straight, at least you were thinking I looked like Grace Kelly and not the poor creature in photo #1! LOL! I actually thought I look most like the woman in photo #2. Well, except for the hair. And the cleavage. Okay, really it's the lunacy thing that provides the resemblance! ;-)

    Oh my yes, I sat on Tonto's lap and last year you'll recall that I sat in the same spot on the sailing vessel Heron that Johnny Depp did (though sadly not at the same time that he did!). So it may be my arse that has all the luck. :-)

    I'm sorry that you have to WORK! Pppffffftttt on that!

    Vegan Elder ~ It's my pleasure to give props to your blog!

    I think you'll really enjoy most of the others, too. It's hard to tell from the blog's name, but Jill, the Count Your Chicken! blogger, is a vegan field biologist and awesome professional photographer who does a lot of traveling, and her blog is filled with her incredible photos of wildlife, flowers and scenery. I'm betting that's one you'll particularly enjoy!

    Wow, Jay Silverheels is one of your heros? How cool is that? (And as you say, this is getting spooky!) If only I'd known that when I was five, I'd have gotten his autograph for you! But since I didn't, I'll be happy to give you mine if we ever meet, an autograph by proxy. :-) And I agree, Tonto was way cooler than T.L.R.

  20. Lori ~ I'm going to reply to your second comment first, because it just tickled me no end! LOL! I love that it took you several visits to spot your blog on the list - made it a bit like finding the plastic baby in the Mardi Gras King Cake! ;-) You're most welcome for the award, I think you and your blog are both lovely and therefore it's quite appropriate for you! I haven't had nearly enough time to explore as many of your posts as I want to, but I really enjoyed visiting some of your early posts and seeing your journey to veganism unfold. That always warms my heart!

    Thanks for signing up for Vegan Cuts! :-)

    I'm looking forward to reading your 7 facts, I agree those are fun to read and a fun way to get better acquainted with people. (I have a hard time coming up with at least a couple that AdventureJo doesn't already know, since we've been friends since college - almost mumble-nine years ago! ;-)

    That's how I've found almost all the blogs I follow, too - from other people's blogs. It's kind of like that sticky web that takes you from the book you were actually looking for to all these other great-looking books you didn't even know about and before you realize it, two hours have passed! My blogroll is now 105 blogs long! (Which is only slightly better than my Amazon wish list! LOL)

    Molly ~ I hope you're feeling better by now! My mom had a UTI when I was a kid, and I remember it well because she had an allergic reaction to the sulfa drug they gave her. Talk about adding insult to injury! My cold is finally getting better - I dragged my poor carcass through my errands yesterday - but I still have a residual sinus headache. Everyone in town either had or has this crud, and I'm seeing a few bloggers mentioning it too.

    That's a lot of bronchitis, I'm glad you don't suffer from it as often. Do you figure it's related to your allergies? BW used to get it every year (in and out of the cold while working up a sweat, delivering to two hospitals, most of the doctors offices, most of the schools and a nursing home, working long hours - how could he NOT get it?) But since going vegan he's only had it once and it was very mild.

    I don't have a GPS, but I can see where those would come in handy for folks like us! :-) I count on BW to be the navigator on our trips (so I get to be the pilot, lol), but somehow I managed to drive all the way to Illinois and then on to Alabama to visit friends a few years ago, and made it back home without getting lost - and all with just a Rand-McNally road atlas! One of my bigger life accomplishments. :-)

  21. Rose ~ DD prefers bald guys? So I suppose stomper has hair like Fabio then? :-) I've known some guys who had thick, curly long hair who later went bald, and looked better bald. I think John is a cutie! :-)

    It was fun to see Shen here!

    Eva ~ Thanks for stopping by! I was hoping you would, as I wanted you to get a fun surprise when you found your award! I love that my comments and the award made your day - that made MY day! I'm just sorry it took me a while to leave comments on your blog. They were certainly in my head the whole time, but it probably doesn't do you any good if I don't type and post them. :-)

    Oh, you'll find lots of bloggers on my award list, blogroll (on my profile page) and on my Great Vegan Sites list (over on the left sidebar) that have just the sorts of blogs you're looking for! Many of them do way more food posts than I do, and there are several that frequently (if not always) discuss important issues, too. Have fun! :-)

    I did check back and see that you replied to my comments, and I love that you do that. Thank you! I can't believe you can't find kale there! Okay, you definitely need to use that as a criterion for choosing your next country. In fact, as soon as I'm done with this, I'm heading over to that post asking for input and suggest that your choice hinge completely on kale crop output. (I'm only quasi-kidding, since kale is my favorite veggie! I even did a tribute post to it almost a year and a half ago).

    Yeah, that was quite the little parlor trick that obstetrician did, wasn't it? I don't know if he got lucky on my birth or if he was usually that accurate!

    Yes, Eve, please do try to keep your comments brief. Nothing bugs me more than people who leave long comments. LOL - write all you want, I love your comments! :-) Thank you again for stopping by, and I look forward to reading your 14 fun facts about yourself! (Congratulations on getting the Stylish Blogger award, too!)

  22. I'm glad to hear you're feeling better! I'm also feeling much better. I haven't had bronchitis for about 18 years now and get a lot less colds since I went vegan. When I do get sick, it isn't nearly as bad & they don't last as long. That's vegan power for you!

    That's impressive that you made it on such a long drive with just a map. I don't think I'd do as well!

  23. Molly ~ I'm glad to hear you're feeling better too! :-) And I'm glad to hear that you don't get sick as often nor as severely since going vegan, because that's sure been our experience, and that of other vegans we know. Yeah, baby! Vegan Power! ;-)

    You'd have done just as well as I did, especially since it was mostly Interstate driving. The tricky bits were when I left the Interstates to go exploring (for instance, I insisted on staying a night in Hannibal, MO, in an old hotel that overlooked the Mississippi River, because I'm such a Mark Twain fan) and when I had to find my way to the little burgs where my friends lived. It was quite an adventure (especially as a vegan!) I really love cross-country trips, and though it'll only take us through four states, I can't wait to drive to Oregon!

  24. I was actually here when you first posted this but it was late at night, I was sooo tired, there was too much I wanted to say, and I gave up and went to bed. There's STILL too much I want to say, but I'll try to keep it briefish.

    I'm directionally challenged just like you. Can't give directions to the fire even though I can clearly picture the burning house. (Hmmm. That's kind of grim ...) So cool that you met Tonto. I never met him, but I did shake the hand of George Russel (Buddy Epson) Davy Crockett's (Fess Parker) sidekick.

    Great looking soup recipe — I like that particular combination spicy, but not so spicy that I can't chew. I'd happily eat soup and muffins every day, too.

    Now I have to check out the blogs on your list that are new to me.

    Hope you're feeling better by now — all that soup should have done the trick.

  25. OOOh!!! Thank you! The only thing I've ever won before was a cherry flavoured yogurt - which I don't even eat :O) I have a question about your recipe, this might make me sound thick but that's never stopped me before... is a yam the same as a sweet potato? We don't get yams here but there are lots of sweet potatoes in the supermarkets.

    I wouldn't have sat on Tonto's knee as a child... I wouldn't even go sit on Santa's knee... was petrified of him!

    Your lack of navigational abilities made me laugh... I'm not bad at giving directions actually. D was in the RAF and frequently comes out with military-type sayings or orders. The cats and I just ignore him.

    Do like the thought of all your sparkly flip flops (Posky likes to sleep with his paws or head in or on shoes so he'd be there like a shot. And hope you're feeling better. (By the way, spare a thought for the vet today - Mrs P has to go for a blood test, ho hum...)

    Thanks again... that made my day! :O)

  26. I'm always curious in who my readers are and if they find my blog worth visiting, then we most likely have a lot of the same interests. You and I happen to have a ton! : )

    No worries... you helped me realize that there are a bunch of people that may visit my blog often and love it even if they don't say a word.

    I will definitely have to go through all of your lists of blogs, then! I might have to put aside a whole day for that, ha!

    I'm sure there's got to be kale here somewhere especially if you said you found such a kale-full place in Germany. We're neighbors, after all. Hmm.. I need to do some better scouting. Maybe I'll need to write down the German word for kale (pretty sure I forget it each time I look it up) and go around asking.
    I saw that you awarded Crazy Sexy Life the Lovely Blog Award and Kris Carr's morning smoothie has kale in it and, well... I've gotta have it!! Someone else suggested that I go to a place where I love the food, too, and I think it's a pretty darn great suggestion.. especially since I'm vegan. I don't want to have to deal with studying AND a food nightmare!

    You're right.. long comments are some of my very favorite. I'm glad you write long comments on my blog, too! : ) Let's me know you actually read my whole post and thought about it. Thank you, again!! You're comments once again have made my day start off great! Have a lovely weekend!

  27. Andrea ~ That happens to me too, I'll have the energy to read a post but will be too tired to have the brain power required to compose a comment, especially when the post has a lot going on. Thanks for returning when you were better rested, I always enjoy your comments! (And there's no need to keep them briefish on my account!) :-)

    At least in the grim burning house scenario, you could just point to it. I mean if the people asking for directions to it could see it and not figure out how to get there either, then it's not YOUR fault! (Hopefully they're not the firefighters!) We really need to form a club for the directionally challenged. I had no idea I was in such good (and well-populated) company. And that's fun you got to meet Davy Crocket's sidekick (hopefully he didn't wear a dead raccoon on his head!) Wasn't Buddy Epson the dad in The Beverly Hillbillies, too?

    You'd love this soup! I wish I had a big bowl of it right now. I still am stuffy, but have more energy and no longer have that stinkin' headache, so things are looking up! Good thing, too - another busy day here today.

    Enjoy visiting some new blogs! That's always fun. :-)

  28. Barbara ~ Yay, I'm glad you finally had some time this week to come visit and found your award! It was killing me not to say anything to you. ;-) I'm glad you were able to make use of this prize, unlike the yogurt. I rarely win anything either, though I did win a couple bottles of wine more than 20 years ago, and some Arbonne skincare samples at a VegFest in '08. Arbonne is wonderful stuff, but so pricey I've never been able to bring myself to buy any!

    Your question re: yams vs sweet potatoes doesn't make you sound thick, in fact it's one I had myself a year or two ago and that's when I found this, which was full of info I hadn't known. It sounds like sweet potatoes are labeled as such in the UK, whereas here they're labeled as yams (though they're almost never yams). You may absolutely use sweet potatoes in any of my recipes that call for yams... we almost always use organic garnet (misnamed) "yams."

    I really enjoyed reading your list! Your angst about Santa was really quite something! My mom used to throw up almost every Christmas as a little girl, but that was due to over-exicitment about getting to open presents, not about fear of the fat bearded guy. :-)

    Sending good vibes to you and Mrs. P today!!

  29. Eva ~ That's fun that we have a ton of shared interests! And you can bet you have a silent fan club reading your blog. :-)

    You inspired me to look up the German word for kale myself, and if my translator is correct, it's Kohl. Which amused me, because there's a chain of department stores in the US (my mother-in-law is a regular visitor) called "Kohl's." I should walk into one sometime and ask them for kale, see what they say! :-) I think you just found yourself a good excuse to go on a little European kale-finding tour! I can't imagine you won't find some nearby, though. According to several articles (including the one I shared on your blog, I think), kale used to be the most common and abundant veggie in Europe! Those were the days.

    I have an online vegan acquaintance from Italy who lives in Berlin and says it's incredibly vegan friendly. That surprised me, but is good to know! (I hear the opposite about Paris. Was that your experience?) It would be too much to deal with college courses, language barriers, and food challenges! Finding somewhere vegan friendly would be a big priority for me, too. I can't wait to see where you end up going! But I'll miss your photos of Switzerland. (Hey, any chance you can go take a photo of our cigar store Indian friend? LOL! I wonder if he's still there?)

    Oh yeah, long live long comments! :-) I must go do a bazillion things now but will pay another visit to your blog later today during a break!

  30. The yam/sweet potato thing is very confusing! It's probably a good thing we can only get sweet potatoes here, otherwise I'd end up crying in the vegetable aisle in frustration at my own ignorance, and that's never good... Mrs Pod gave the vet the warning paw today... quite entertaining :O)

  31. Barbara ~ It confused me at first, too. Should your local grocer take a notion to start carrying yams or one day you find yourself shopping for starchy tubers in the increasingly confused and confusing US of A, I'd hate for you to turn into a weeping, muddled puddle in the middle produce aisle. So perhaps this will be more helpful. For it has photos! Which helped me realize that I've never actually seen nor eaten a true yam in my life... just sweet potatoes posing as yams.

    (Btw, doesn't "muddled puddle in the middle of the produce aisle" sound rather Dr. Seussian?) :-)

    Oooh, the dreaded Warning Paw! I hope the vet took heed!

  32. Thank you for telling me your story about Kohl's! I used to shop there all the time, ha! No way I'll forget what it's called now! : D
    Yeah, I know... it was EVERYWHERE in England so I really don't know what's going on here.

    Very good to know about Berlin! I've also been told it's a very creative and artsy city. I wasn't vegan yet when I visited Paris so I'm not too sure, but I didn't have TOO much trouble in Paris as a vegetarian. For my first meal, my friend and I went to a small grocery store and bought fresh baguettes, grapes, and cheese. Take out the cheese and it's 100% vegan friendly! On bigger travel journeys that I take in the future, I think I'll document the food I eat as well because that's something that's of interest to me so I'm sure there are many others who are interested in vegan food on the go as well.

    No worries, I still have a bunch of photos to post of Switzerland and quite a few more places to visit! That cigar store Indiana is raaandom! No idea if I'll be able to spot him anywhere, but next time I go to Zurich, I'll try to remember to write down the address!

    I know how that is! I've yet to respond to a bunch of comments on my blog + other blogs + changes to my blog + emails.. etc. etc. and hopefully sleep is on the list somewhere soon!! Good thing it's Saturday!

  33. Thank you, Laloofah! I read this post a while ago, I realise and I don't seem to have commented at the time! That's weird! I must have been up to my eyes in something and having a wee fly look at my favourite blogs as a bit of relaxation, but with no time to comment. Sorry!

    So, as you've now put up another post for me to comment on, I'll restrict myself to one thing. YOU SAT ON TONTO'S LAP!!! Wow!!! We watched The Lone Ranger every week when I was a wee girl in the fifties. I LOVED Tonto!

  34. First of all, thank you for including me on your blog award list! I'm tickled pink! I always enjoy your blog so much!

    I definitely understand where you're coming from where directions are concerned. I'm hopeless to receive or give directions using north, south, east, and west. Give me right, left, straight, and turn any day!

    That's cute that you had an invisible fox! When I was a child, my invisible friends were Laurel and Hardy. I had never seen their movies, but for some reason, I had two banks that looked like them. So I imagined that they were my playmates.

    Since you usually air dry your laundry, I bet it always smells lovely! There's nothing quite like laundry that's been dried outdoors!

  35. Eva ~ Ha, that's funny you used to shop at Kohl's, and you're right - that should make it nearly impossible to forget the German word for kale now! :-)

    I suppose that cigar store Indian might not even be there anymore (or the Harley dealer either, for that matter), who knows when those street views were photographed? But I thought it would be funny if you ever happened by it and spied him there!

    I can sure relate to your last paragraph, I'm feeling completely overwhelmed (online and offline) and really bad about how behind I am on blogs and comments. I feel like I've abandoned several conversations! Thanks for being patient!

    Penny ~ I do exactly the same thing sometimes... visit blogs with no time (or focus) to be able to comment but with the intention of returning and doing it later, but then realizing I got distracted and forgot! :-) I think I must be a foreman on the Road to Hell Paving Crew, with all my Good Intentions! ;-)

    I'm amazed there are so many Tonto fans, and from different countries! That's really great! And now my experience meeting him feels even more special.

    Cadry ~ I'm so glad you found your award, and you are more than welcome! I'm sorry I've gotten behind on my visits to your blog (and am aware of your latest comment there to me which I hope to reply to soon!), as I always enjoy it. And I'm tickled pink that you enjoy to Mehitable Days! That really made my day!

    And I'm relieved to hear from so many fellow directionally-challenged people! Especially being married to someone with such a keen sense of direction, I've always felt terribly flawed. But now I realize I'm in great - and rather vast - company! :-)

    I love your Laurel and Hardy story! That is so cute! Isn't it fun how our childhood minds worked?

    I agree, clothes dried in the fresh breezes and warm sunshine smell and feel wonderful! It's a shame almost no one here uses clotheslines anymore.

  36. Hi Laloofah! I don't know if you saw or not, but I thought you'd like to know I replied to this post here: Thank you, again! :)

  37. Eva ~ Thanks so much for bringing your post to my attention! I just took a glance at it, and I'm pretty sure I started to read it one day not long after you'd posted it with the intention of returning to read it thoroughly and comment on it when I had the time. Obviously, that never happened! I don't have time to read it right now, either (we're racing the weather on an important outdoor project), but am saving your post for later today or tomorrow when I hope to get a chance to enjoy it! Thank you again! xoxo

  38. Gosh that soup looks great! :D

  39. John ~ And it definitely tastes every bit as good as it looks! :-)


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  • THE HUMANE GARDENER ~ Nancy Lawson
  • THE WORLD WITHOUT US ~ Alan Weisman

There is still strong in our society the belief
that animals and the natural world have value
only insofar as they can be converted into revenue.
That nature is a commodity.
And that the American dream is one of unlimited consumption.
There are many of us, on the other hand,
who believe that animals and the natural world
have value by virtue of being alive.
That Nature is a community to which we belong
and to which we owe our lives.
And that the deeper American dream is one of unlimited compassion.

~John Robbins, "The Food Revolution"

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