WIAW #18: Love Your Veggies

Hello loves, it's time for another WIAW! My favorite time of the week :) 

Before we get started on WIAW-ing, please check out my guest posts - I wrote 2 guest posts this week, and both were posted on Monday, so Monday was a very Passing Daisies filled day! I loved it. I especially loved what Rachel from My Naturally Frugal Family said about Stuart (my boyfriend) and I: "She is a vegetarian with a carnivorous boyfriend.  They are a cute pair." That made me giggle! The other post was on Naturally Sweet Recipes, and those ladies are super sweet and have an adorable blog - love them! See the links to the posts below and let me know what you think!
Mango Coconut Pancakes @ My Naturally Frugal Family

Oatmeal Raisin Cookie Bars @ Naturally Sweet Recipes

I also want to update everyone on my newest challenge: Couch to 5k. Thanks so much for all your wonderful comments! I loved reading and responding to all of them! Today I finished Day 3 of my challenge, which technically means on Friday I can begin the next set of 3 days. However, I really like having a specific schedule, so I will be waiting until Monday to increase the intensity. That way, I can have a nice Monday - Wednesday - Friday work out for my next 3 days! This week, I began with a 5 minute warm up and then went into 60 second running intervals alternated with 90 second walking intervals. So far, it's been going really well, and I am pleased. I even made a mixtape for my runs, but I need suggestions for good upbeat songs - anyone have any thoughts?

Also, as far as my eating no baked goods goes, I've been doing great! The only time I've slipped up so far is at the cooking demo I went to (see below). Next week I plan on eliminating refined sugars and seeing how that goes! And maybe allowing myself a free day. I also plan on limiting my intake of soy (because one 8oz. serving has the same amount of estrogen as 8 birth control pills!) and dairy. I'm not going back to being vegan, but I have noticed that I do feel a lot better when I avoid dairy, and i still cook/buy primarily vegan anyways. So limiting myself it is :)

It's Sharifah!
Finally, on Tuesday (yesterday!) I attended my first cooking demonstration - ever. It was held in a little spice store called The Spice and Tea Exchange and was part of a monthly cooking demonstration program they do. Each chef who leads a demonstration incorporates spices from the store into their meals.The bonus? The one was a vegan cooking demonstration! It was led by a woman named Sharifah, who has been vegan for over 15 years (I think)! Isn't that crazy? She was extremely nice and did a great job for leading her first cooking demonstration! She made quite a few items; here is the menu she whipped up for us:

Appetizer: Veggies and dips (Moroccan Dip, Coastal Dip, and Ginger Teriyaki dip.  All made with spices and half vegan sour cream, half vegan mayo). 
Side Dish: Fresh Kale Salad with Bacon Crumbles
Side Dish: Roasted Tofu Tenderloins using 3 spice blends: crazy chicken, BBQ, and seafood blackening. 
Main Dish: Spicy Veggie Lasagna using TVP granules
Dessert: Tropical Chocolate Fondue

Oh my word. The fresh kale salad was by far the highlight of the evening. I had 3 servings! It was just that good. It used raw kale, amino acids, vegan bacon, red onion, carrots, olive oil and apple cider vinegar. Talk about amazing. I will definitely be making this recipe again! Also, I got to give her the link to my blog and ask if I could volunteer to help her with her catering business for the experience - she said yes! I'm so excited! Thanks Sharifah! 

Okay, enough chit-chat. Let's get down to what we are all here for: the WIAW party, veggie style! And please admire my photo editing, I just started using Google's Picasa 3.9, and I love it! It's so easy to use and makes collages really quickly (great for WIAWs!). I'm still learning about it...but so far, so good!

{veggies} Rhythm Foods Raw Sweet Potato Chips, Archer Farms Traditional Bean Dip, hummus wrap,  marinated white beans & olives. {bakery} lemon loaf with blueberries & raspberries. {pasta} veggie lasagna, rice noodles with sour cream & seasonings. {drinks} Argo Tea Carolina Honey. {fruit} red grapefruit.

Sounds good, right? I thought so too! Stick around because I'll be posting lots of recipes as soon as I'm able to sit down and type them up! 

Happy WIAW! 

PS. What are some good songs to run to? 
Much love,