Happy Veganniversary to me! One year ago today I made the decision to go vegan for 30 days, just to see how I felt. 365 days later, and I’m still going strong. My husband and son have joined me in my quest to save the animals, protect the environment and improve our health. Over the past year I’ve done a lot of reading and research and I spent a lot of time in the kitchen experimenting with new recipes. It hasn’t always been easy, but I’m a year wiser in what being a vegan means.
A few things/people that helped me survive and thrive my first year as a vegan:
The 30 Day Vegan Challenge by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau – This book is no longer in print, but you might be able to find a copy at your local library. She now has a 30 Day Vegan Challenge program on her website, which sounds like it has all the same great information that was in the book. The reason I liked the book (as opposed to the online program) was I could sit down and read the entire thing in one sitting without having to wait until day 14 to learn about plant-based milk. It was nice to have all of the information at once and to be able to skip forward to the chapters I found most helpful. The book (and the online program) have tons of great information. If you are thinking of going vegan, I recommend you check this out. There were a lot of other vegan books that I read in 2012, all of them were helpful. Check out my GoodReads page for other vegan books I liked.
My local vegetarian/vegan Meet Up group – I joined the Colorado Springs Vegan and Vegetarian Group earlier this year and attended my first event in April. Over the course of the year I’ve attended a book club discussion, a few movie screenings and a few potluck events. I’ve made some great new vegan friends who are some of the nicest people I know. It’s also wonderful to go to a potluck and know that I can eat EVERYTHING there. I’m looking forward to many more events with them in 2013.
The movie Earthlings – To say this movie is intense would be a huge understatement. Reading about the mistreatment of animals and the horrible conditions they live and die in is one thing, but to actually see it happen is something totally different. This movie is a punch in the gut, and probably not for everyone. I convinced Matt to watch this with me one night in May, and he went vegetarian the very next day. I think of this movie often, and it’s a good reminder of why my choice to go vegan is so incredibly important to me. You can watch it for free on their website, just make sure you have a box of tissues handy. I watched a lot of educational movies in 2012 including Forks Over Knives, Vegucated and Peaceable Kingdom and I would recommend all of them.
2013 promises to be another great year of vegan adventures. One thing I’m going to work on this year is reducing my intake of processed food. I’m really trying to make an effort to eat more whole foods and minimize the (vegan) junk. Wish me luck!