Category Archives: The Girls

Two years ago my husband and I got married and went on our honeymoon in Maine. I have already written about our wedding and the first part of our trip in Portland Maine. Now I am talking about our trip visiting Mount Desert Island and Bar Harbor. I had been to Portland before but I could barely remember anything about my trips when I was little. But Bar Harbor was a place I can vividly remember. So I was excited to show the place to Jon.


When we first arrived we settled into our room at a local small hotel. It was privately owned and very nice. It had a small kitchen, making it easy to make our own lunches or breakfast, if we so chose to. Then we went to the local supermarket to pick up some food for lunches and snacks.

We walked around the downtown Bar Harbor area and all the memories flooded back to me. All the cute restaurants, and stores. Oh and the weird novelty lobster soaps. My sister and I loved those things. We came right before the tourist season, so the town was actually pretty dead. This made everything really romantic, so I recommend coming during the off season. Not much is actually closed in Bar Harbor like in Portland, but things do tend to close earlier.

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We first started by driving around Acadia National Park. There is a main loop that drives to all the major points for the park. There are other trails, mountains, and points of interests that is part of the park on the western side of the island. But most of popular attractions are clumped together on the eastern side. As we drove all around we saw water from the rain create small water falls on the side of the roads.

We figured we would try the Bubbles Trail since it was fairly short. I mentioned in the previous post how it rained everyday we were there, right? Well, I didn’t take in consideration that it might not be raining hard, but the rain gathers and falls down the mountain. By the end of the trail we were struggling to get a grip, and I managed to slip and scrap myself. My husband was very concerned but this isn’t the first time I scrapped myself while hiking. I use to do it all the time when I was little and all you can do is to keep walking and tend to it later. *Note to self, buy mini first aid kit*




Aside from rain the skies were really foggy. It was pretty cool and we got some cool photos in the process. But it did prevent us from seeing some great views. We drove up Cadillac Mountain but couldn’t see very far which was a bummer because all Jon wanted to do was see the sunrise together. In fact we drove up it twice in hopes we could see the view before we left, the clearest day out the whole trip. Still it was a no-go. I guess it just gives us more incentive to return, right?


By the end of the trip the rain eased up a little, sadly that happened on Memorial Day Weekend. Man what a huge difference! All the sudden the amount of visitors doubled! My husband commented that it wasn’t very nice once all the tourists came out, which made me laugh since it still wasn’t peak season.

But there is something of a gamble by going to Mount Desert Island during May. It could be beautiful, or it could be rainy and foggy. It is really hit or miss. Luckily there are lots of fun things to do on the island that don’t involve hiking. Below is a pretty large list of things to check out, indoor, outdoor, and food wise.

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Hannaford Super Market
86 Cottage St Bar Harbor Maine
This is small supermarket but was well stocked with vegan and vegetarian options. The location is great because if you can’t find what you are looking for you are walking distance from A&B Naturals, which may end up having it. We can’t comment on this store since we didn’t check it out, but both places will have plenty for you to stock up on perishable foods and snacks for the next week.

Morning Glory Bakery
39 Rodick Street, Bar Harbor Maine
website | facebook
This cute little bakery is a little hidden on the side roads. I would recommend checking it out since they have some breakfast basics. They have a few vegan options and I found the bagels and hummus my favorite. They even have a vegan sandwich that you can grab on the go. The place was pretty busy whenever we would go, and filled with locals. So go early and don’t expect to get a seat.

Eden Vegetarian Cafe
Super bummed that this excellent restaurant is closed. They featured locally sourced foods, and mentioned whenever possible the specific ingredients that were local. For example my bento box had local tofu, seaweed, and fiddleheads. The food was really amazing, though I remember my cocktail being less than awesome. It was way too sweet. They had a beautiful location that wasn’t in the direct downtown area, but was still a walking distance. Even though the food was amazing, I did think they tried to be a gourmet restaurant, and might not of been that good. Even still, if they were still open, I would of definitely eat there again.


This Way Cafe
14 1/2 Mt. Desert St. Bar Harbor Maine
website | instagram | twitter | facebook
This was probably our favorite restaurant in Bar Harbor. They have lots of vegetarian options for food, and some vegan options as well. Their breakfast has a tofu scramble options, though I had eggs since I was still eating it at the time. I also remember getting their zucchini noodles for dinner, but it seems to change a little from when I ordered it. I remember it tasting awesome though. The restaurant has a very low key campy diner feel, but with some gourmet recipes. Take note that the menu can change by the time you go, but it looks like they have various ways that you can make your meal vegan. Our server was super helpful, and they were insanely fast. So you get your grub and out the door quick to your next hiking adventure.

Reel Pizza Cinerama
33 Kennebec Place, Bar Harbor Maine
I didn’t know where to place Reel Pizza Cinerama. Should it go under places or food? Well, this was a perfect place for us since it rained so much. Pretty much this is a place that serves both pizza and shows movies. These types of movie theater/restaurants are popping up all over the place. This theater is very mom and pop, has a couch in the front, and uses old bingo boards for calling orders. The pizzas are very vegan friendly, offering a soy cheese and nutritional yeast to sprinkle on. Downsides? They only show two movies and are really popular. We got tips from locals about how to visit. Appear an hour to 30 minutes BEFORE doors open. When you get in, sit down first, then have someone order your pizza. We followed these rules, and we were glad we did, the theater was packed (and this was OFF SEASON!) and our pizza was finished just as the movie started. Bonus- they even serve locals beers.

Matsumoto Joe Cafe
5 Firefly Lane, Bar Harbor Maine
After a certain point, I needed a little me time away from my husband. I went for a small walk around town to check out a cute cafe I saw. I’m glad I did. This small cafe had some mangas for people to pick up and read, and some cute little japanese snacks to buy. But the kicker is the amazing coffee. I had gotten some lattes from Morning Glory Bakery, and was disappointed. I got a soy latte here, and was transported to a blissful world. I was mad I didn’t stop here earlier. If you are a big coffee lover, I would check this place out. When I was there they were serving both soy and almond milk, but I am not sure if they stopped offering both.


Abbe Museum
Acadia National Park, Bar Harbor Maine
website | acadia website | facebook | twitter | pinterest | youtube
This museum has two locations. One is located in the downtown Bar Harbor area, the other is nestled in the center of Acadia National Park. If you go to one museum you will get a coupon for a discount at the other location, so it is a good idea to check out both. We ran out of time and only got to see the location in the park. I found this location really interesting because it is full of history. The location in the park centers mostly around Dr. Abbe’s findings in 1920’s. He was one of the first archeologist in Maine, finding many artifacts from the tribes that lived in the area. The museum also sports older dioramas, which were raising money to update. They also just added another exhibit talking about the ever evolving trading of the Wabanaki and the French. 

95d4f4d0c55d11e2ab0f22000a9f305a_7Seal Cove Auto Museum
1414 Tremont Road, Seal Cove Maine
website | facebook
I remember going to this museum when I was a little girl. It was the go-to place to visit if there was a rainy day. I remember it being packed, rows and rows of beautiful vintage cars. The place has gone through a major facelift since then. In the past there were cars from all different time periods, but now the owners decided to stick to early cars, from 1895 to 1920. What makes the exhibit so interesting is that it defies how we think of cars. They sport eco cars (electric models) and lots and lots of different car manufacturers. One thing I took away from the exhibit was that most car companies made more than just cars, like motorcycles and sewing machines. The museum is on the other side of the island so it can be a 45-60 minute drive.

Acadia National Park:


Cadillac Mountain
Info on the Official Website
Although we didn’t take any trails up Cadillac Mountain, I have done so several times when I was little. I am fairly certain I have done both the north ridge (listed as moderate), and the south ridge (listed as strenuous) trails. If a little girl can do it, so can you. Even though we didn’t hike up it, I completely recommend driving up it. There is a gift shop on the top, so can pee after your hike! The views are also spectacular. The park always recommend driving up to see the sunrise. There are even sometimes early morning yoga classes up there too!




The Bubbles
Info on the Official Website
Jon and I were able to take the Bubbles trail before the rain built up too much on the mountains. It is a fun trail, but unlike some of the mountain trails, there is more up and down since you are going to several peaks, not just one. The trail is pretty short, and connects to others if you want to extend the hike. When we went it was incredibly foggy (see photo above). We can only assume the views were nice.

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Ocean Path
Info on the Official Website
This path is a great tour of the various points of the park. The path is 3 miles and an easy walk. It starts at the Sand Beach and goes all the way to Otter Cliff. What is nice about the walk is that you can park almost anywhere and pick up in the middle of the walk, easy peasy. It is a great way to visit Thunder Hole during peak hours, park far away and walk over. You will also see a variety of different surroundings, being near cliffs, beaches, and dipping a little in some wooded areas. This trail is perfect for a quick casual walk for the first or last day of your trip. It is also great for days where the weather is less than stellar as slipping and falling isn’t a big issue.


Thunder Hole
Info on the Official Website
Going to Acadia National Park and not visiting Thunder Hole should be against the law. This was my favorite attraction when I was a kid. The shape of the cliff creates lots of splashing and a loud boom. After a long hot hike it feels great to have water splash on you. It is best to check the official website and ranger stations about the tides, and they will recommend when the best time to visit. I always visit several times, during peak and off hours.


On May 18th, 2013 I tied the knot with Jon. I always felt that we were “married” earlier than that, we were committed to each other for some time. In my head we were married, but we thought we would hold off the legal stuff since we were young and poor. We’ve come a long way, having an awesome wedding that was featured on A Practical Wedding, and may be featured in a local eco-friendly magazine called Grid (I am SUPER excited about this!) And now, we are taking the next step and BUYING A HOUSE! Well, we are looking at a townhouse that is part of a development, so in some ways we will be owning a HUGE condo. But we are in the early stages so I am trying hard not to jinx it by looking for furniture on Ikea. (This will be for our deck, dining room table, and this will hold our drinking glasses and cookbooks) I blogged about my wedding last year, so this year on our two year anniversary I thought it would be appropriate to talk about our honeymoon in two parts.

We are starting on our first leg of the trip- Portland Maine. The plan was to drive a most of the trip to Portland Maine, and spend two nights there. Then we would drive a few more hours to Bar Harbor for majority of our trip. I recommend taking a similar plan of action if you want to drive up to Maine from New Jersey. There is so much to do in Portland, and we even went during the “off season” when a lot museums, stores, and sites were closed until Memorial Day. So this my humble “tour guide.”


I made a post about my wedding last year, but I didn’t mention how it rained. The only thing I worried about with the wedding was rain during the ceremony. It was the only thing I dreaded. I really didn’t want the ceremony to be done in a tent, once the reception started, LET IT POUR! And I lucked out- sort of. We got through our ceremony and it started to drizzle as we started our reception line. The rain was light enough for photos which was nice. Then we rocked out the rest of the night in tent. It rained and rained the next day as we spent it with my Nanna and Pappy, and tying up loose ends. So on Monday when we started our honeymoon to Maine we were happy to see bright skies. I mean look at that photo above! SO BRIGHT!

Yeah, it was sunny for the drive. By the time we got to Portland, a light drizzle started. No big deal right? Yeah, it rained everyday during the trip. We still managed to have fun, and it gave us incentive to go back for more hiking. It is also worth noting that my vegan journey was a little bit of a waffling period. I was transitioning to a stricter vegan diet, but I occasionally still had fish, eggs, and didn’t cut out honey yet. So keep that in mind with some of the restaurants and links I share.

Left to right, top to bottom: Flowers in our B&B room; Picture of the B&B we stayed in; View from our room; Funny sign in the designated parking space

Left to right, top to bottom: Flowers in our B&B room; Picture of the B&B we stayed in; View from our room; Funny sign in the designated parking space

Portland was really awesome. I remember going a few times when I was younger, and I kept hearing from the locals about how much it has changed for the better the last few years. It really made me think of Philadelphia since it too has a bustling farm to table scene, lots of vegan grub, and has a recovering downtown. I joked that it was like Philadelphia only with wider roads and less cars (and cars that stop for you… what the heck?!) We stayed at the Inn at Park Spring Portland, and they were very nice and accommodated my dietary restrictions. It was in a great walking distance from everything, which was super nice. The first night I thought to not dress up since it was raining (not knowing it would rain everyday) and accidentally went to a really high end restaurant. They were nice and still served us, and treated us quite well! We went to Five Fifty-Five, which is totally not vegan, but the restaurant we wanted to go to was closed on Mondays. We walked around town, bought beer for the hotel room and called it a night.

The first day started with a house tour of the Victoria Mansion which was ah-may-zing! I loved going on the house tours in Newport, and this Mansion had an amazing history. The houses in Newport were huge but didn’t contain most of it’s original furniture. But the Victoria Mansion had some of the furniture looted when it was not being lived in, but once they made announcements that they were going to open it up as a museum, they found some of the original possessions returned in the middle of the night.

After that tour we went to Green Elephant which is a mostly vegan restaurant. The interior was beautiful but everyone was pretty laid back. The food was light and delicious, a great lunchtime meal. What I really love about the place is that they have lots of different types of Asian inspired foods. It wasn’t like Chinese take out, but you could still get eggrolls, stir-fries, and noodles. But there were big soup bowls or even curries.


We then then walked over the Portland Museum of Art. It was a nice size. I am so use to big museums like The Metropolitan Museum of Art of Philadelphia Museum of Art, so visiting a smaller museum was kind-of nice. It was nice to see all the exhibits in one trip, but I know there will be new things to see on the next trip since they have rotating galleries. BONUS TIP: A member of AAA? Show your card and you get a discount… at least we did two years ago. It won’t hurt to try, we only knew about it since the lady at the desk was nice personally asked us.

We had some time to kill so we walked around the town. Even though it was raining, it wasn’t too bad. Sadly we came before Memorial Day so many places were closed, or closed by 5. If you are a thrifty person there were lots of eco-friendly and second hand shops. One place we really liked was Yes Books. It was a used bookshop with LOT and LOTS of books. I mean loads. We spent a good hour or two there, till we thought it would be a good time to grab dinner.

We had dinner at Gritty McDuff’s Brewing Company as a friend recommended it. Sadly the beer is not vegan, but they offer other beers by other local breweries. The staff was REALLY nice, and I am sure it might of helped we were not at the height of tourist season. At one point they brought out the wrong appetizer but were hungry so we didn’t mind and didn’t say anything. The waitress notice, and brought out the dish anyways on the house, even though we said we didn’t mind (since we ate majority of the whole dish already) Many people there seemed like locals, which was kind-of nice to see in a very touristy area. There are lots of vegetarian options, and some foods can easily made vegan. I ended up getting the Veggie Reuben with no cheese or ranch. Even without those two components, the sandwich was AMAZING.


The next morning we planned on checking out of our Bed and Breakfast, and heading over to Bar Harbor. Our room had a tacky little cartoon map of Portland. It was one that probably sells ad space to business to be listed and shared around at hotels. On the map I saw Honeymaker– a meadery. I was starting to learn about it from my fermentation book, so I was curious to check it out.

Although honey isn’t vegan, I understand that not everyone who reads my blog isn’t vegan. The only reason why I am still mentioning them for my trip is because they use sustainable practices, use local honey, and had really unique mead. If anyone has tried mead in the past, they probably have tasted something that was thick and insanely sweet. Honeymaker ages their honey, trying to make it dry like a wine. We fell in love with them and bought a box of mead, which we still have one bottle left.

The cool thing about Honeymaker was that it was on the other side of town, making it fairly easy to drive to Whole Foods to pick up some lunch on the go. The location of Whole Foods is great because it is quick to jump on the highway towards Bar Harbor.

Overall, what my husband and I loved about Portland is how walkable it was. It was drizzling on and off the entire time we were there, but the area was so beautiful that it made it okay. Everything is within a mile, and therefore walkable. Some areas were a little rough, and it is obvious that Portland has lots of homeless people. It would be nice to visit again and to see if some the areas have changed.


Green Elephant : 608 Congress St, Portland, ME 04101 : vegetarian/vegan
Gritty McDuff’s Brewing Company : 396 Fore Street Portland, ME 04101 : vegetarian/vegan friendly
Honeymaker : 51 Washington Ave., Portland, ME 04101 : vegetarian drinks
Whole Foods : 2 Somerset St, Portland, ME 04101 : Veg-Vegan Options


Inn at Park Spring Portland : 135 Spring St, Portland, ME 04101 : will accommodate dietary restrictions
Portland Museum of Art : 7 Congress Square Portland, Maine 04101
Victoria Mansion : 109 Danforth Street Portland, ME 04101
Yes Books : 589 Congress St Portland, ME 04101


I have un officially decided I should make a wish list for my birthday every year on here. I think every year I want more abstract things in my life over materialistic ones. Like I just want to go for a long hike, a BIG layered cake, eat out with my hubby, a house to move into, and a say of a really long nap with my snuggle buddy.

But my friends and family can’t gift me a nap. Sadly. So people give each other material things. So if I have to choose some actual things to get, these would be it. Some are bordering the line of stuff I like and stuff I NEED. I am truthfully a horrible person when it comes to buying things I need.

1. Princess Knight Vol 2. & Creepy Comic Collections

I’m a hard person to pin down with comics. I liked reading mangas but I never connected with the “manga” crowd since I loved scary mangas, or ones with different styles like Paradise Kiss. But as time went on, I expanded to American comics, but mostly from the indie scene. I just can’t be normal huh? So I picked up Creepy during my bachlorette party with Alexa. It was recommended since I dug some horror comics. I love it since they are stories by various artists, different drawing styles, and different types of story telling. 

Princess Knight I got for Christmas, and finished up reading it. The story was written by the manga master Osamu Tezuka. It is an interesting read since I’ve read most of his adult mangas, so picking up Princess Knight was a completely different point of view.

2. Who Could Be Saddle Shoes?

I still need shoes guys. Some of my shoes are starting to tear, and I am trying hard to hold out longer and longer till I buy my home, and start budgeting money for myself again… or until I can ask someone else to buy them for me.  But these look super cute, vegan, and comfortable.

3. Vegan Knee High Socks

So I recently posted about Wharton State Park, and gave a warning about ticks. Well, I need some knee high socks to help protect myself from ticks. So why not say I’m vegan in the process? 

4. Puppycat Mug

I actually hate mugs. Or rather I hate how many cool mug options there are, because I don’t need them all. In fact we have so many mugs that it drives me nuts how much space is wasted on them. But this one is pretty darn cute. I am sure there is a way I can do that to my mugs, so I can try that out.

5. Star Crossed Darling Brooch

There are so many cute pins and brooches on etsy. This guy randomly caught my attention. He would look super cute on some cardigans, dresses, or jackets. 

6. New Bras

The bra depicted above isn’t what I’m actually looking for. I am trying to find some eco-friendly bras, which can be a tricky thing. Actually finding any fashion forward eco-friendly fair trade clothing can be tricky. I found a few cute ones from Faeries, which may get an order from me in the near future.

7. Coyote Skull Zipper Pouch

I have a weird obsession with animals bones for a vegan. At least it is cool knowing the photographer never harms animals for the bones (she cleans them herself and usually finds or is gifted found bones). I don’t really need a pouch, but I love the photo on it, and truthfully, I always find uses for little pouches and bags. 

What do you guys want for your birthdays? I betcha it is just a big old cake. I haven’t had one in such a long time!

Photos taken by Jen - around mid January.

Photos taken by Jen – around mid January.

I wanted to start this post off by addressing my absence from the blog for the past few months, not as an excuse but more as an explanation (this post had originally been started after the holiday season, and it has been a bit of a toughie to get out of my system). I have been diagnosed with Lymes Disease. I had been having a very hard time focusing on a lot of things, if not everything in general. It’s been difficult for me to keep in touch with friends and family and keep my head on straight. After many a long winded discussion with my mother about all of the things that had been upsetting me (lack of focus, forgetfulness that would seem comical to others, constant head aches/aches in my body, extreme lethargy and depression being the main symptoms) she decided to take me to get tested. She had just recently been diagnosed herself for similar reasons so it made sense for me to get checked out*. I was almost more frightened that I might not have Lymes, and if I didn’t that would have just meant that there was something else that was wrong with me. I felt broken and useless.

Once the official diagnoses came in for me it was almost a wave of relief. I had been suffering for months, if not years, with so many problems that I thought were just part of what made me me. It was and still is extraordinarily frustrating. My sense of direction was garbage (when you are having trouble figuring out how to get to the mall you’ve been shopping at forever and worked at for nearly two years you know something is off), I had no focus or drive for anything, my body was aching, and I was depressed. It was very trying for me to try and keep a schedule for art or blogging, sometimes even seeing friends. Every time I would think to myself “THIS will SURELY get done today” it almost never did. All I wanted to do was escape my current life and to know what feeling like a real person was like. Even as I continue to write this blog post itself I find that I am having trouble finding the right words to make sure I don’t just sound as if I am complaining – my end goal is to make a comic about it. It’s much easier for me to put my feelings into pictures rather than words most times. 

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Sweater: Forever 21 | Skirt: Monteau via Modcloth | Tights: Unknown | Shoes: Thrifted

Who likes my new sweatshirt? It was a gift from my sister in law, which was a pleasant surprise since it is one of those things I like but wouldn’t of bought on my own. I had my husband take a photo to wish everyone a happy New Years! I am sure everyone has their own New Year’s Resolution, including me. My resolutions tend to be similar every year, but always slightly different.

Drink Less Booze

I’ve been drinking a lot lately, and honestly I am not really happy about the results. I’ve gain some weight, which isn’t the end of the world. But I know it has a lot to do with drinking often, which are empty calories. I know there are actual health benefits to certain drinks, but let’s face it, they are usually just excuses. My goal is to drink no more than two alcohol based drinks each week, excluding celebrations.

Run and Workout More Often

I got out of the habit of consistent exercise. I have lots of excuses, and I want to try and ignore them to do more. Maybe I will try and train for a race to give me the motivation. 

Kick the Coffee Habit

Here’s my problem with coffee, I don’t drink it to wake up in the morning. I purely drink it for pleasure, which has slowly have grown from a weekly treat, to a daily drink. Some days I feel exhausted and I can’t help but wonder if it is the coffee. To make things worse, I don’t even drink good coffee anymore. I am not going to make coffee forbidden from my diet, but put it on the same level of a cupcake- very infrequent.

Read 16 Books (with less comics)

Anyone make a reading challenge on Goodreads? Last year I made the challenge for 15 books, and I finished it. BUT three of the books were cookbooks (which I REALLY did read)  and six were graphic novels. Not saying there is anything wrong with graphic novels, but I would like to make the ratio a little less drastic next year.

Have a Cup of Tea Each Night

I use to have tea as a dessert every night. I miss this practice, and I have a large collection of tea sitting in my cabinet. This will hopefully also decrease the amount of “snack” foods I eat when I am not actually hungry. Not the worse thing I can do, but I always wake up not hungry which in turn postpones my workout.

Pay More Attention to Vegan Clothes and Beauty Products

I’ve been heading more and more down a consistent path to veganism as a lifestyle. But I am pretty sloppy when it comes to checking beauty products and clothing. I also want to get a handle on honey, as I tend to skim over that ingredient with foods. 

Start taking a photo a day

One of my favorite blog features is The Dainty Squid’s Project 365. She recently posted Project 365 + why you should do it too! I just recently got a very expensive camera. Although I’ve see a major difference between the photos from my old camera and my new one, I sometimes wonder if I will ever get total “use” of it. This project will force me to get out of the apartment and take some pictures!

Get Out of My Apartment

Part of the reasons why I made resolutions for drinking less booze, drinking more tea, and exercising more is that I feel awful. Almost everyday. My husband does too. We are pretty sure it is our apartment. It is really old, dusty, cramped, and we now have a neighbor who smokes right by our window. I don’t want to write “buy a house” but that is our ultimate goal. Hell, I’ll take moving in with parents than renewing the lease.


This post today isn’t directed to vegan or vegetarians. No, it is for the hosts who are expecting a guest with a restricted diet to come to their dinner. It could be Thanksgiving, Easter, or a Christmas dinner. I am talking less about what to serve and talking more about how to really make your vegan guests feel welcomed. Anyone who has to restrict their diet knows a thing or two about going to friend’s houses for food. It pretty much involves bringing their own food, and sneaking in a cliff bar.

So I made a list of the less obvious ways to serve an omnivorous dinner for anyone who have food restrictions. These are some of the things that I wish other people would do for me (or stop doing). Some are easy. Some steps are harder. Some break “normal” rules of politeness, but can cause a lot less stress in the end. It is also worth noting that these rules apply to vegan, vegetarian, gluten-free, or allergy sensitive guests. Since this is a vegan based site, I pretty much just use the word vegan more than any of the others.


Don’t Apologize for the Turkey

No one is telling you to take away the turkey, or the ham, or the gluten. If your family member or friend is a vegan, they know that you are not one. Any vegan is aware that other people eat meat, and know that dinner time is not the time to start sharing the terrors of factory farming. Pointing out that you are serving food that person can’t eat is sort of like saying “Sorry you can’t eat the better food.” 

On the same note, don’t keep asking if the person got enough to eat. Ask once, then let it be. Because let me tell you, there is nothing that is more annoying than being singled out like that. I’ve had many well meaning hosts ask if I had enough to eat, then proceed to list things they could give me. Most of the time those foods are not actually vegan. 

Don’t Make Two Versions of a Dish

Many people modify dishes for my dietary needs for family get togethers. That’s nice, except they make one version for themselves and one version for you. Here is an example, at a party a person decided to make an dish which was pretty much eggplant, onions, and feta cheese. They decided to put a small amount of eggplant and onions off to the side, for me, and then tossed the rest with the feta cheese. This situation made me feel like the vegan version was so boring and bland that no one would want it. So I was stuck eating the dish no one wants. The second part of the problem is that I now feel pressured to eat all or most of the dish. Because now everyone can see how much or how little I ate of it. Then the worst thought comes to mind- I might not have enough to eat!

The simple remedy is to just pick some vegan dishes. This might be a challenge but you can find tons of recipes online. Or you can see if you local library has a vegan cookbook. I view it like this- you can either make brussel sprouts and bacon and leave some plain brussel sprouts on the side. Or you could make balsamic vingared roasted brussel sprouts that everyone can eat and enjoy.

Ask Your Guest to Bring Something!

I know this is considered by conventional rules to be rude. But if your guest is vegan or has food allergies, they might understand that you might not know what you are doing. And they might be happy to supply a vegan cake or a protein rich vegan dish. Truthfully, your guest might be relieved and will be happy to bring a dish they know would convince people that vegan food is good food.

If you are afraid of coming off as rude, simple tell your friend that you are afraid that you might mess up, and you would feel more comfortable that they would have a “back up” dish they know they can eat. It is likely that your friend has a go-to dish to bring to dinners.

Do Research and Ask Questions

I kind-of hope when I am invited to parties and dinners people will look up veganism to learn about it. Not many people do. This can be an inconvenience to vegans, but it can be deadly when people have allergies. I have a friend who is allergic to gluten, tomatoes, onions, garlic, and many other foods. Even simple seasonings would contain all of those ingredients. So don’t be afraid to ask about some specifics.

And no one is asking for you to google videos of cows being slaughtered. Nope, just to take a look at lists of forbidden ingredients. Heck, not many people know that veganism isn’t the same of vegetarianism. The easy answer is that a vegan doesn’t eat meat, cheese, or eggs. It might slip your mind that it would include fish, honey, gelatin, or lard.

Your Guest Will Forgive You for Slip Up

No matter what, if you try and make a vegan meal your guest will give you A for effort. You might mess up a step. Fine. You might accidentally grab chocolate chips with milk fat in them. Know what? It happens to vegans all the time, even people who have been doing it for years. We use pretty much everything in animals, and in ways you wouldn’t even think of. Did you know that secretions of beavers are used for vanilla flavoring/scents? Probably didn’t. No, not every bottle of vanilla extract have beaver juices. Some red dyes are from bugs. These are the things I wouldn’t stress about, especially since your Vegan guest might not know about it yet.

Don’t Sneak in Meat to “Prove a Point”

Your vegan guest might be annoying. But it isn’t cool to try and prove that meat is delicious. Or that Katie REALLY isn’t allergic to peanuts. No one is denying that bacon and peanuts are not delicious. They are. But trying to put your guest in a taste test is pretty much wrong. To make things worse is that vegan meat replacements are getting better. Some are obviously different, some are down right near exact

By sneaking in meat, gluten, or an allergen you could be harming a person, giving them horrible night on the can, or just defying their trust. It is one thing to not know any better, and ignoring someones request. 

Plan 3-4 Vegan Sides

Not sure how much to make vegan? Think about making 3 vegan or allergy friendly sides. It is understandable that you might have a hard time finding things, or don’t want to buy too many new ingredients. Generally I find blogs like Oh She Glows really good for recipes with no-fussy ingredients. You don’t need to buy faux cheese or soy meats. 

There are even foods call “accidentally vegan.” That means the producers didn’t intend for the products to be marketed to vegans. PETA has a large list of foods, that you could buy and skip having the cook from scratch. Some examples are oreos, Pillsbury original crescent rolls, Sara Lee cherry pie, and more. 

An easy way to find foods you need? Certain stores label their brands as gluten-free, vegan, dairy-free etc. And some common allergens will be listed on the back. If you see “may contain traces of…” that means you should be fine, unless your guest tells you otherwise (IE extreme allergies or someone with celiacs)

Enjoy the Night!

We vegans don’t bite. And we really aren’t terrible people.  You putting forth the extra efforts to include us in the meal is greatly appreciated. If you want to talk about animal rights, then we will. But if you don’t that’s fine too. We won’t judge and we know not to be preachy. Some stereotypes are true, but some are not. 


I’ve been wanting to share this portrait for awhile now. I kept forgetting because I am a terrible person. I love Floral Prints and Common Sense, and I have a link on the side. Rachel has a no fuss blog where she posts her outfits, and talks about (at least currently) about her life out of college. I dig her style since she unapologetic for what she chooses to do- lipstick yes, shaving no.

I also dig her art, so I entered a free portrait contest on her blog, AND WON! I was pretty excited to be transformed into a character of my choosing. I was at first thinking about Sailor Jupiter but then thought, no. I asked Alexa for ideas and she mentioned Battle Royale. I loved the book and the movie. Alexa and I even dressed up as Mitsuko and Chigusa for Otakon. I wanted to be in the film costumes but have the ice pick like Chigusa in the book. 

I recommend everyone check out Rachel’s Art Flickr account to see all her different works. She also has an etsy shop where she sells both prints and custom portraits. I don’t see a character portrait option, maybe she stopped doing that. But she has custom couples doodles, blog banners, and solo portraits. Her prints are pretty awesome, my favorite being Robot Babe Eating Floating Pie (cuz that’s the future, floating food).

It is worth noting this is not a paid blog post. I just really want to share my picture with every. single. person. that. I can.

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Hello everyone! Co-Blogger and Partner-in-Crime Jenny had nominated me for the Liebster Award and I couldn’t be more excited! Jenny made her Liebster Award post here a  little while ago – but for those of you who didn’t get to see it, I will break down the rules nice and simple for ya.


  • List 11 facts about yourself
  • Answer the 11 questions given to you by whoever nominated you.
  • Nominate 5-11 bloggers with LESS than 200 followers.
  • Give 11 new questions to your nominees.  Now, I don’t know too many bloggers outside of Jenny – but I do know a few. So hopefully they will be able to answer my questions when I get finished with this.   

11 Facts About Meow

1. I am a Cartoonist & Illustrator while also working as a manager at my local Toy Store.

2. I didn’t really like beer until I started dating Mr. Ian, now I like it way more than mixed drinks.

3. My parents are both divorced and re-married, making my family tree somewhat difficult for new friends to understand. But I wouldn’t have it any other way.

4. I have recently had to remove most dairy from my diet, but the one thing I will ALWAYS cave for is ice cream…tummy aches here I come!!

5. I stopped eating any sort of cow-related-meat in 8th grade when I realized that I just love cows way too much.

6. I first thought that I wanted to pursue a career in animation, but saw just how much work was needed to be able to pull it off correctly and knew I wouldn’t have the drive. I respect animators so much! I then thought I wanted to draw for Marvel or DC Comics, in the same style and everything. Once I realized that I simply can’t re-create those looks in my work I also came to find that I wouldn’t like working for either company as much as I thought (still love a bunch of the people who DO work there though!!).

7. I got my cat Miso for my 16th birthday and she has since become my cat-baby. Best birthday gift ever!

8. My favorite mediums to work with (on my artistic projects) are colored pencil to sketch and watercolor or gouache to paint. 

9. There are SO many different tattoos that I would like to end up getting in the future, I am just too poor right now. They include outlines of the silhouettes of my 3 house cats on my right arm, Blaze’s halter and lead rope on the opposite arm, a friendship tattoo with Jenny, and a giraffe on my back.

10. Mr. Ian and I have officially been together for 5 years! Go us!

11. My favorite color is red, my favorite color combos are black & white (so classy!) and pastel pink, lavender and mint green (so cute!).

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This weekend I went to visit my grandparents in rural Pennsylvania. They are located in Roaring Spring, PA. If it sounds familiar that might mean you bought a Roaring Spring Notebook. The town is less than a square mile, and most people living there work for the local paper mill, or the surrounding farms. The “biggest” town near it is Altoona, which is pretty much unknown to people outside Pennsylvania.

On Friday my husband and I drove 4 hours in the middle of Pennsylvania, driving through and up mountains. When we hit Roaring Spring, we passed by street signs pointing to the football field. We joked how it was like Friday Night Lights. Once we got to my Nanna and Pappy’s house, we found out that football is no joke in this town. There were signs everywhere for the big game. The field is near their house, so we watched lots of people park on the street and walk to the field. My Nanna even let a friend park on their lawn for a good parking spot.

Football and cheerleader wasn’t anything big at my school. To me it was an outdated stereotype in movies and shows, like the nerd with bottle-thick glasses and the pocket protector. This was the first sign that I have been living in an urban bubble.


It made me wonder, can small towns go vegan? It seems obvious to say yes, an individual can order stranger items online, and the internet can help them learn different things. And that is great. Isn’t that what all vegan bloggers do? Try and connect to everyone?

But it became apparent there are lots of reasons why people in Roaring Spring, or any small rural town, wouldn’t go vegan. One being community. Right before leaving, my vegan friend who grew up in Altoona wished me luck. She knew how frustrating it is to try and get her family to make something vegan. Luckily, my mother always cooks when visiting my Nanna, as she likes to try our cooking. What my family cooks were far from normal for the area. Most foods are bland, and meat based. 

I point this out since we made two chilis for one dinner. One was with ground pork, the other was based off of Oh She Glow’s My Favorite Vegan Chili. My grandparents both seemed perplexed by the idea of a vegetarian chili. My Pappy ate two bowlfuls, despite everyone thinking he wouldn’t touch it. I wouldn’t of thought this would be such a novel idea since chili competitions have a “vegetarian” category.



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We have been nominated for the Liebster Award again! Before I (Jennifer) was nominated by my friend Jamie. We’ve been friends for a LONG time, and our blogs are quite specialized, and therefore quite different. Her blog is about books, and is currently under hiatus for the moment. But the blog got nominated by Sprouts and Chocolate, which is a vegan cooking blog, which is much closer to our subject matter. So I thought, why not?

Side Note- I am fairly certain Alexa is going to post an Liebster Award herself that I tagged her with, so there might be a double Liebster Award post coming up! XD

So what are the rules? 

  • Answer the questions given and then come up with 10 new ones to ask your nominees.
  • Nominate 8 other blogs, let them know you have nominated them and put a link to their blog in your post.
  • No Tag backs and nominees must have under 200 followers on any platform.
  • You must tell all the blogs that you nominate that you have nominated them.

10 Questions

What was your diet/lifestyle life before you went vegan?

I always have cooked, but I went mostly vegan in college so most of my dietary habits have been vegan for the past 6 years. But there was a year where I ate meat since I was living with my in-laws. My father in-law LOVES to cook and I felt I was being too intrusive cooking my own meal since we all sat down and ate together. But I would eat lots of fish, and meals with very little meat, which I did appreciate. Overall, my life has been home cooked meals from varying degrees- even when I was in college.

What was the tipping point of you committing to a vegan lifestyle?

As mentioned, I was eating meat when living with my in-laws. I was breaking my “vegan” rules all the time in earlier years, but never really eating meat. It was the first time in awhile I was eating meat. When my husband and I moved out into our own apartment, I just didn’t feel right. I decided to go back to a mostly vegan diet, occasionally eating fish (like once a month) and eggs from a specific farm. Within the past few months I started to read articles about brain functions with various sea life, and I just couldn’t do it anymore.

What do you hate about blogging? (I personally hate all the dishes for failed recipes!)

Trying to remember everything I want to write! I have so many ideas and things I want to mention in the post. After posting it I think “Crap! I wanted to mention how to make the recipe gluten free!” Or it could just be as simple as writing a recipe down and forgetting where it is. There is a recipe for vegan quinoa sloppy joes somewhere. Not written down. Boo.

What is meal have you made and thought to yourself (or out loud) “Damn I am good!” ?

I recently made Tomatillo Baked Tofu. I’ve been searching high and low for tomatillo recipes and couldn’t find much other than salsa verde or something with salsa verde. LAME! So I just took a chance and made the best tofu ever. I took not so hot photos but I WILL be posting it soon, probably next weekend.

What is your favourite “junk-food” snack?

ICE CREAM! It is the biggest bummer about being vegan. It isn’t like I can’t FIND ice cream. It is just so damn expensive.

What cuisine do you find easiest to veganize?

Asian. I know there are lots of non-vegan pitfalls. It is a pain to pick up every package and read the ingredients to make sure there are so fish or egg or milk in there. BUT meat is pretty scarce in recipes or used as a flavoring agent which can be subbed with other ingredients. Not to mention there is a strong vegetarian movement due to buddhism. So I feel like mix that and combine it with the little amounts of milk traditionally found in recipes, it is pretty easy to veganize. 

What recipe of yours is a carnivore’s favourite requested dish when you go to family/friend gatherings?

Hmm… probably none. I’ve been requested one thing- a roasted cauliflower, chickpea, and olives dish that I made one Easter. Well, there are more requests from my husband’s side of the family, but my family is kind-of a cut-throat we all wanna cook sort of family. I think my pitfall is that my sister picks some of the vegan dishes from non-vegan cooking sites. She picked a vegan beet risotto and it blew. 

What is your favourite cooking season? (Do you love Fall for pumpkin? Or peas and mint in the Spring?…etc)

The beginning of any season is exciting because it means new ingredients. But kind-of truthfully winter is most liberating since I don’t get any shares from my CSA. That means I get to buy whatever I want! If I see a recipe, I can buy anything. I don’t have to say “what the hell am I going to do with all these green beans?” and google “vegan green bean recipes”


Caeli from Little Vegan Bear
Faye from Veganopoulous
Barb from That Was Vegan?
Danielle from Danielle Atkins
Alissa from Connoisseurus Veg
Jennifer from My Blissful Journey
Raechel from Rebel Grrrl Living
Dawn from Veg-Am

10 Questions for the Nominees

  1. What is your favorite food: One savory, one sweet?
  2. What was your first vegan cookbook?
  3. What is your specialty dish?
  4. What is your main reason for going vegan? Environment, health, compassion?
  5. What would your consider the best day off?
  6. How do you take your coffee?
  7. Do you carry your veganism into other parts of your life? (Clothing, toiletries, etc)
  8. Do you consider yourself a feminist?
  9. What is your cooking jam?
  10. Are you a wine, beer, hard liquor, cocktails, or non-alcohol type of person?