Friday, June 4, 2010

A very sad weekend

Hi everyone. My family got some very sad news on Thursday around 1 am. My brother-in-law passed away suddenly and we do not know why. He was only 58 years old and has left behind a 14 year old son who is going to need alot of love and prayer to get through this. My sister is devastated and is faced with the task of raising my nephew without a father. My brother-in-law was a wonderful uncle to my children and he will be missed. My family is going to get together and really help my sister with raising her son. I have a wonderful sister and she is a very caring person. She also has Rheumatoid Arthritis and another crippling disease (my mom and dad are genetic nightmares!) and she will need alot of love and support to get through this.

On another note, my Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is raging and I can barely get out of bed or brush my teeth for that matter. Trying to keep my chin up though and remember daily all the blessings in my life that God has given me. My family, my husband and three awesome children, friends that care and do not mind my crippled condition sometimes! – I am very blessed. I want to thank all my friends who have called me with their kind words of encouragement and support this week. It has really helped me get through tough times this week and I appreciate your caring so much!

As some of you know, I have not been raw for the past month. My Rheumatoid Arthritis was so bad, that it was basically agony everyday. After being raw for five months, I decided I needed to do something different with my diet to see if I could (once again) ease my RA symptoms. My RA became so much worse on the raw diet, I cannot explain it. I think I am the only person on the planet that can eat broccoli and feel worse! And as far as the pain goes, you learn to live with the pain, so not many people can tell that I am hurting so much (unless they see my hands and wrists, or wonder why I shuffle). I mean, its not like you are gonna be at the grocery store and screaming in pain the whole time. You just learn to tolerate it and get through each day and try to keep a smile on your face! I know many of you deal with health issues and pain daily, and I will keep you in my prayers! hugs hugs hugs :)))))))))))

Wow, sorry for such a sad post! I promise my next post will be happier! I think I need an voice-activated keyboard as typing is excruciating on my wrists!  I wish everyone a blessed and wonderful weekend.


Thursday, May 27, 2010

RA Gone Wild and Yummy Flax Cookies

Hi everyone! Long time since I posted. Sorry but crazy times around here with the son graduating college, the other son in baseball playoffs, daughter in dance recitals, end of school year stuff – all this and a really bad RA flare – and I mean really bad – wild bad. Cannot get out of bed bad. I think I need a rope contraption on the ceiling so I can somehow be hoisted out of bed!

As some of you may know from my other blog RA is Wild, I have been eating way more cooked food lately. After 5.5 months on raw, and my RA getting so much worse I had to make changes.  I am still trying to be at least 50% raw throughout the day and seem pretty successful with that. All it takes is a huge salad at lunch, or maybe a hummus wrap with lots of veggies and a green smoothie at breakfast, and I find it easy to stay above the 50% raw mark. Last week I was feeling a little better but this week has been really, really (did I say really?) hard. Coping with extreme, chronic pain can be tough to deal with mentally too. I have the greatest husband in the world who is very supportive and helpful – Love you hubby!

So my RA has been really bad lately and my hands do not work at all. In fact when I wake up, they are numb and very painful (I know that sounds weird to be numb and have pain at the same time but that is how I describe it). My wrists hurt so bad that I am icing them in the morning. But when life gives you lemons, what do you do? Make cookies! lol  - Even if my hands are not working I can make these easy cookies. Nothing will stop me from making cookies! I will make them with my elbows if I have too!

The other day I made Averie's No-Bake Vegan Flax Seed Cookies and these are really good! What a great way to incorporate flax into your diet and they are sooo easy! I added a TBSP of Almond Butter just because. Now she makes a much prettier version of cookies than I do, but remember I have mangled, painful hands! haha

raw 005

Head on over to Averie's site as she has some wonderful vegan recipes and advice. She is a really wonderful person and blogger and is very inspirational!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Weekend! God Bless you all!

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Quickie Blackberry Nut Milk Ice Cream & other confessions

Happy Saturday night everyone! Hey, so my kids wanted Thrifty (now Rite-Aid) ice cream. So like a good mom I went and got them some and had to hold two pints of cookie dough and pralines and cream ice cream in each hand for the drive home..How agonizing was that? I do not care how healthy the raw diet is, I miss ice cream. So I decided to make a quickie raw version using some brazil nut milk I had in the frig and some fresh blackberries. It was like magic – well almost…it turned out pretty good and calmed my ice cream cravings down.

I have made some killer raw ice cream before using a recipe from Jennifer Cornbleet's Raw Dessert Book (and I mean it was to die for!). This was a quickie version and it did the trick. I kept the agave to a minimum as I seem to feel it if I eat too much of that stuff (kind of the way I feel when I used to eat too much sugar).


Now onto the confession part – Forgive me for I have sinned. I am a very bad raw girl! It has been five months on the High Raw Diet – and yesterday I decided to treat myself to some crappy fast food at my fav place Del Taco. I ordered a small bean burrito no cheese. Its VEGAN. So why did I feel so guilty?

I am sure the guilt stems from that the fact that there is probably crappy ingredients in the tortilla and beans. I can make my own beans and buy my own tortillas and at least know every single ingredient that is in there. I do know that Del Taco has vegan beans and tortillas so at least that is good to know. But I have to confess that I LOVED EVERY BITE OF THAT BURRITO. I do feel deprived on the raw diet lately and I cannot help it. I am going thru a "If I eat another salad I am going to kill myself" phase!

~ Although this salad with Creamy Tahini dressing (recipe from was really good ~

It is such a pain in the butt to make salads and eat healthy sometimes!

Ya know Dr. Fuhrman (the Eat to Live Doc) says if you can eat healthy 90% of the time you have mastered the art of healthy eating. So maybe I should treat myself every now and then to vegan cooked stuff. I am still high raw (like on average 80-90%) but I do enjoy the cooked vegan food ALOT when I have it!

Here is a list of cooked vegan food I have had throughout my duration of being High Raw (I have been 100% Vegan since I started and NEVER deviated from that – my kids were daring me to try a bite of real ice cream tonight!)

  • Homemade Veggie burgers
  • Quinoa Spaghetti and Organic Spaghetti sauce
  • Stir Fry Veggies
  • Roasted and baked potatoes
  • Pinto beans
  • A few French fries here and there
  • Baked sweet potatoes
  • Gluten Free and Vegan Scones (Homemade and killer)
  • and ONE small Del Taco Bean Burrito NO cheese!

Now I have stayed high raw even though I have incorporated some of these items into my diet now and then. I could really see myself going more cooked vegan and REALLY enjoying it! So I am going to start making that transition. Especially since I cannot stay raw and backpack in the high Sierra's for two weeks, I better get my bod used to digesting cooked food.

I have to be careful though as I could easily be an overweight vegan. I like to eat ALOT of food and I can do that on raw and not gain weight. I know I would gain weight eating alot of vegan spaghetti and scones!

So I hope everyone has a great weekend! Summer is almost here! I went for a four mile walk today with the hubby and daughter. Trying to get into shape for upcoming backpacking trips!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Raw Bread Recipe Alert! – Kale-Hemp-Onion Bread

Hey there! How is Wednesday treating ya? I have been meaning to post some raw recipes that have actually been successful! I have had quite a few bomb on me, but I have to say (as I pat myself on the back) that my raw bread recipe is pretty darn delish. I have mastered Kale-Hemp-Onion Bread. I have made it a few times and tweaked it a little (sunflower seeds for hemp seeds, to add garlic powder or not) but each time it has turned out awesome.

Trust me – this stuff is awesome! And packed with nutrition! This is a great way to use nutritional yeast to get your B12s.

You can make it as thick as you want – this is about 1/4" thick

So without further ado…the famous recipe from a newbie raw foodie:


Kale-Hemp-Onion Bread

  • 2 cups of torn Kale
  • 1/2 white onion semi-chopped
  • 1/2 cup Hemp Seeds (or use pepitas, sunflower – whateva you desire)
  • 1 cup ground flax seed (or Bob's Red Mill Organic Flax meal)
  • 2/3 cup Nutritional Yeast (makes this bread taste cheezy and awesome)
  • 1 tsp Himalayan Salt (or whatever salt you have…I love this pink salt)
  • 1/2 tsp Organic Black Pepper
  • 1/2 tsp Organic Garlic Powder
  • 2-3 tbsp olive oil

Now toss it all in a food processor and process til that ball starts to whip around the container. The dough will be stiff – Now spread it or pat it with your hands on a lined dehydrator tray and score it in your desired shapes. I score mine so they will fit into a quart mason jar for storage (so like 3" x 3" squares) I put my last batch in the dehydrator at 10:30 pm and it was ready at 8 am. That is it! You should get about 8 slices.

This bread has a great cant really taste the onion that much at all, but it really helps to keep it moist. The nutritional yeast really compliments the bread and gives it a yummy cheezy flavor.

  • Make veggie sandwiches – use avo and tomato slices, lettuce and organic mustard  - can you say YUM!
  • Use it as a side to your huge raw salads!
  • Eat it as a snack!

I feel this is a great go-to raw snack/food item to have on hand. One day I am gonna make all 9 dehydrator trays full of this stuff. But I need the super large 12 cup food processor! Hubby do you read my blog? Cuz that would be a super romantic surprise present! (HAHA)

Have a great day!

Friday, March 26, 2010

WOW! LDL Cholesterol dropped a whopping 30 points!

Hey Raw peoples! This is a quickie post and (sorry I have not posted but life has been crazy wicked) – Anyways, just got back from the Doc (a Hyst post-op appt) and my LDL cholesterol dropped 30 points – can you believe that? 30 points in four months. My LDL is now 109 – I am so happy! RA puts a person at much higher risk for cardio issues due to all the inflammation going on. So I want to do everything I can to lower my risks. My OB/Gyn Dr is so awesome. He is a firm believer in the overall total body approach and supports my veganism. All my other levels are great too. And I am not anemic – yeah!

So with that I will say…

"Goodbye In-N-Out Burger with melted, double cheese (for those who do not live in Cali, this is in fact a very traumatic goodbye) – Goodbye greasy french fries, Goodbye Ben and Jerry, Goodbye Taco bell, Goodbye fried chicken, Goodbye sourdough bread with butter slathered all over it - I shall miss you! Parting is such sweet sorrow (well sometimes it is!) and I am off to greener pastures!

Now if I could just lose that last 7 or 8 pesky pounds, my vegan life would be complete! lol.

The hubby's new pride and joy (I think he loves this Rubicon more than me!) We just got back from Utah – it was gorgeous!


Monday, March 15, 2010

Psycho Killer and Vegan Martinis

I can’t seem to face up to the facts.
I’m tense and nervous and I... can’t relax.
I can’t sleep, cause my bed’s on fire.
Don’t touch me I’m a real live wire.

Psycho Killer
Qu'est-ce que c'est?

fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa fa better
Run run run run run run run away

This song is how I feel today~ It is one of those days! Especially the run away part! My RA is killing me, I am tired and could sleep the entire day away.  I had a Chocolate Cherry Bomb Shake by and used Hemp protein powder that has E3Live and Maca in it. Hopefully that will energize these weary old crippled bones! 

Yeah I know, this was NOT my Chocolate Cherry Bomb Shake…but it looks pretty good!


smoothies 002This puppy had raw cacao nibs on top…yum!

Here is the good ole Raw menu plan for today (I reserve the right to change this!)

Breakfast: Green Juice (I drank a quart!) – hey I save my Kale stalks from my massaged Kale salad and juice them later!

Lunch: Chocolate Cherry Bomb Shake with E3Live, MACA and Hemp

Snack: Apple

Dinner: Spinach salad with raw veggies and tahini dressing, my own Raw Kale Hemp Bread that I made and it was to die for…recipe coming soon.


Here is what I have been craving lately…

martinis as if Raw martinis existed…raw vodka?


Good news! Vodka is Vegan – according to the Vegan Society in the UK…so that is good enough for me! I have not had a cocktail in four months. Now I am not much of a drinker at all (*cough* college days don't count), but semi-occasionally it is nice to mix a yummy, fruity martini and chillax a little. I used to love to go to the Cheesecake Factory with the hubby and sip on a Red Rasberry martini (one of the best drinks in the universe by the way.)

Absolut, Stoli, and Grey Goose are all Vegan. Just in case all you vegans wanted (needed) to know!

A GROSS, disturbing fact: Some drinks such as Campari are coloured with E120, a red colouring agent made from the red body material of scale insects (Dactilopius coccus). This is also found in some soft drinks and red wines. YUK – EEEWWW – Sounds like something Man vs. Wild would eat. The red body material of an insect. GROSS.

So what is everyone up to today on this ho-hum Monday? My 17 year old has a baseball game and then I am cooking chicken quesadillas for the fam. We are trying to go thru everything we have til payday. Of course my kids always tell me we have nothing to eat.  Last night they fought over pizza or Subway. I said "what do I care, I am raw, I don't eat that crap" – Raw gets me out of alot of dinner disputes!

Sorry my blog post is all over the place today…Psycho Killer, Martinis, Raw Shakes, Menu Plan…I am all over the place today!

I better run run run run run run run awaaaaaaaaaay!

PS – Now that song will be stuck in your head for the rest of the day! hee hee

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Gluten-Free-Vegan Blueberry Scones – Yeah baby!

Life has been sooo hectic lately! I cannot believe I have not posted in over a week! So…will Blueberry Cinnamon Scones make it up to you? And hold on to your raw socks – These are VEGAN and GLUTEN-FREE! Yeah, baby, yeah!

These scones are rockin' my house! Cant keep the fam away from them! Good thing for me, as I do not need the calories (And here I thought vegan food would never contribute to weight gain?! These would definitely!)

 Flying Apron's Blueberry Cinnamon Scones

These turned out so yummy! I have to admit that I tasted the dough and it had a weird taste to it. They are made with Brown Rice flour and Garbanzo bean flour so I figured the weird taste might be from these flours. But once cooked, they taste fantastic! You could spread Vegan butter on them or even coconut butter. The recipe is from the Flying Apron's Gluten Free and Vegan Baking Book. I am not a celiac but I am trying to watch my gluten intake, so alternative recipes make my heart soar! Yes, they are not raw, but a girl needs a baked treat now and then, don't cha think? I only had a nibble! But if I can get the family to eat healthy, vegan treats instead of the crap food they normally eat, then I have accomplished something.

So what's up Raw peoples? My raw intake the last week has been at about 70-80%. I am finding it hard to be 100% raw lately, as I am loving the stir fry veggies in coconut oil over brown rice combo – warm food just sometimes kicks butt over raw! And warm food just makes me happy sometimes. So I am all over that!

This past week I have been working out on the treadmill with walk-run intervals in my new Asics running shoes. I was hoping that running might jiggle loose some of this fat I am carrying around! Does it work that way?

Have a great Saturday!


Thursday, March 4, 2010

Go Raw Cafe Vegas Review and Mid Life Crisis

Hey raw vegan peoples! On our way back from Utah Anniversary camping we stopped into the Go Raw Cafe in Vegas.  What a cute, little granola, hippy spot! When we walked in, they were having a yoga/vegan class which was kind of cool.

What a good sport the hubby is as he wanted the meat and potatoes thang!


Kind of a cafe feel to it…that's fine as I'm not a fancy girl


Anyways, short and sweet post here…everything here was pretty darn good. We ordered a Bruschetta Nut Cheez buckwheat appetizer thingy and I forgot to take a pic until the last bite! It was really, really, really, did I say really? good.

 Bruchetta Toast - “Cheese”, tomato, basil, garlic, pine nuts, & herbs

This was rockin' good


Next was the Go Raw House Salad…one of the best salads eva!

Go Raw House Salad
A mix of any or all of the following organic ingredients:
Mixed greens, cucumbers, shredded carrots, bell peppers,
tomatoes, sprouts, avocado, onion, nuts & seeds.



Mexicali Pizza - Topped with Mexi “cheese”, “beans”, “rice”,
guacamole, salsa, sour dream, & hemp seeds

This was rock your raw-socks-off crunking awesome!

I so wish I could uncook stuff like this!

I felt like I was in Berkeley when we walked in the Go Raw Cafe. If you have ever been to Berkeley you know what I mean. My kid attends Cal, and Berkeley is a cool, hippy, vegan, granola town. Vegas..not so much, but this cafe had a little slice of that Berkeley feel. They also had raw food items you could purchase off the shelf. The only thing I did not care for here was their desserts. Amazing as I usually love raw desserts, but the ones here were so-so.


Utah Camping post to come soon! Got my hubby his 50th birthday present early. A Jeep Rubicon! He has always wanted a Jeep. Its kind of a man-mid-life crisis thing I guess. My son reminds me that 50 is NOT mid-life but age 40 actually is. I guess we are 10 years late on the mid-life crisis.

Moab here we come! Water fast may be in order for awhile so I can recover financially from the Rubi purchase!


Thursday, February 25, 2010

The most amazing sunset and I'm out of here!

McClure Meadows at Sunset – Evolution Valley August 2009

in the High Sierra Backcountry

Hey my little vegans! Quickie post! I am off for anniversary camping this weekend with the hub-a-dub-dub. No kiddos on this trip (bittersweet – I always miss them). So anyways, if I get a chance I will finally snap a pic of the food I tote along on these camping trips. High Raw, lots of fresh produce and a little vegan cooked meals at night. I will tell you a secret (sssshhh!) I might sneak a little popcorn in at night while we watch Lost on the I-Touch. I soooo miss popcorn! We are almost finished with season 3 – and yes I like Sawyer…can't help myself.

Quickie list of food stuff I am bringing:


Nut milk, a tad bit of raw granola

Frozen green juice

Teeccino herbal tea

Apples, oranges, pineapple – all fresh and organic

Massaged kale salad with carrots and hemp seeds

Fresh guacamole and salsa with raw corn chips

Pure and Larabars (But I am trying to stay off these lately)

Gena's Chocomole


Mary Jane's outpost Vegan backcountry meals

Quinoa spaghetti with Amy's organic pasta sauce

Bell peppers and onion for fajita stir fry with a brown rice tortilla

Popcorn (ssshhh!)


Hope everyone has a great weekend and see you in March! Oh and we have to see the tax man on Monday – boo!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Feeling Raw-Blah and yummy granola bars

It's official! I have been raw (well high raw) for three months now. It is also my 18th Wedding anniversary this weekend! Well, the date is really February 29th but that only comes every four years. I am sure you are wondering why anyone would pick Feb. 29th for their wedding day, but that is another post! In honor of these two momentous occasions I decided to make some yummy treat to take with us this weekend as we are going camping (of course). My hubby and I are turning into hippies as we get older, and camping just seemed the right way to celebrate 18 years of bliss! (haha – mostly bliss).

So hop on over to Miss Averie's site and check out her recipe for High Raw Vegan Chocolate-Coconut-Chia-Oat Dessert/Energy BarsThese were so fantastic during the creation process that I could not stop licking the spoon! I did omit the banana as I still detest them. I also added some pre-soaked pumpkin seeds and pecans.

I should have taken a pic with the spoon in the batter but I was to busy applying it to the inside of my mouth!


This is just delicious goodness! High Raw yumminess!

Now I popped this into the freezer and later I will cut them into bars and package them up for our camping trip. I am still trying to lose a little weight (can I get a grrrr!) on the raw diet and having trouble with it even though I eat nothing but green juice and kale all day long.  I will make sure to only eat one small bar a day while camping…maybe a snack.  And just so you know, I did not have enough peanut butter, so I added some sunflower seed nut butter and they still turned out fab.

So my thoughts on this RAW diet thang– has it helped my Rheumatoid Arthritis?

I went through some NASTY detox symptoms (at least I think they were detox symptoms). Within one week of the raw diet (and I was 100% raw from the get-go) my knees were super stiff and hurt all day long. My RA got much worse everywhere. Basically I started a major flare and I think it was detox symptoms. Maybe us RA people detox in a weird, joint-associated way. I took more prednisone during this time period than the last 13 years of my RA disease.

Still injecting Enbrel into my thighs 2x/week. In fact, it does not work as good as it used to since I went raw – go figure!

Has my RA improved overall in the last three months?

Well, let me see – in a word – NO.  How sucky is that? I am still worse than when I started. I think it might take longer to detox for people with auto-immune disorders. But I am no expert. I can only tell you what I have experienced.

Have I seen any health symptoms improve?

YES and can I get a YES. I know this a tabu subject but can we talk constipation? I am the queen of it. No the King of it. No the Galactic Ruler of it! I have struggled for my entire life with the number 2 thing. I lived on Senekot. I am sure I kept that company in business. I have tried it all, Benefiber, Metamucil, you name it I have tried it. Now I have always consumed massive quantities of water so that was never an issue. Before I went raw, I ate a ton of steamed green beans which seemed to help but then I would digress to my old sluggish ways. RAW has seemed to cure me of this awful problem. So was it meat, dairy, crap processed food? Do I lack enzymes that help me digest stuff? I have no idea, all I know is that the RAW diet has CURED my constipation.

How about weight loss on the RAW diet?

Yeah whatever (She says with arms folded and back turned!) – Seriously, damn it. I lost seven pounds when I first began this diet, but since then I have lost NOTHING. ZIP. NADA. In fact, I have put on two pounds. Now, to be fair, when I started RAW I had just had a hysterectomy so I basically laid around for three months due to a horrid recovery. So I am sure I lost some muscle mass. In the last month I have really stepped it up and I am lifting weights again and walking alot with the hubby. Yes, it does hurt to lift light weights and exercise when you have RA. At times I find myself cursing my own body parts (damn these wrists, damn you to hell!) but we RA people have got to keep moving no matter what. So maybe the two pound weight gain is muscle? At least I can tell myself that! But after three months of being RAW (two months 100% raw, and this last month high-raw), I expected to be down at least 10 pounds! What the heck is going on? I will have to cut off an arm to lose that last five pounds.

What about your hair and skin?

Is my hair fuller and thicker? NO. But keep in mind I have RA, and the meds make you go bald (seriously, I used to have 100 times more hair). Has my skin improved? Do I have that glow everyone talks about? NO! In fact I still have adult acne at times. I always battle clear skin. I was hoping going RAW might really help that but so far I have not seen any difference in my skin.


Besides the obvious benefits of helping stave off animal cruelty and environmental impact issues, the jury is still out for me as far as my health is concerned. I really had high hopes for going RAW. I really thought I might be able to get off all my meds one day. So far, this seems to be unattainable for me. RA drugs have really nasty side effects, but the disease is so debilitating that most choose to take the meds (including me) or I will cease to function. Now I realize my inside health has probably improved since I am not eating animal fat. I do realize all the benefits, but my main goal was to overcome this dang, crappy RA thing.

My Ultimate Goal

I want to transition to a high raw diet/vegan. I miss cooked food. I miss stir fry and soups. I miss going out to dinner with my hubby. I can see myself doing Raw for breakfast and lunch and eating a cooked vegan meal for dinner. I already find myself assimilating some cooked food into my diet and so far my digestive issues have not returned. I tell you one thing, being a vegetarian would be a piece of cake for me now! I think being dairy free is harder than not eating meat. Not that I ate that much dairy. In fact, I love nut milks and all the dairy alternatives, but eating at a restaurant and being dairy free is almost impossible. My favorite restaurant, The Cheesecake Factory, offers basically zilch for vegan options. Even their pasta is made with eggs, and veggies are cooked in butter, and milk products are added to sauces. Yes, I could order a plate of veggies cooked in olive oil but why bother spending the money. I can cook or uncook veggies my way at home.

Lately I am finding it hard to be on the Raw diet. The excitement is not there and I am getting bored of my food choices. Maybe I will feel different tomorrow!

Is it just me, or does everyone hit a RAW plateau? Do you ever get bored of the Raw diet? Maybe I am going through Raw Mid Life Crisis! lol


Friday, February 19, 2010

Fave smoothie of the week – So Cherry

Quick post and then I got to go spend time with the hubby as my butt has been in this computer chair all day and he is watching Star Trek NG without me. This is about the millionth time I have made Kristen's Raw Cherry Chocolate Bomb Shake and it is SCRUMPTIOUS! Now ya got to go visit that link for the recipe but I have tweaked it every time. Here are some additional yummies you can add:

  • Pumpkin seeds for extra iron (pre-soaked of course)
  • A touch of agave (if you have a sweet tooth)
  • Raw cacoa nibs for crunch
  • Maca – I like to just say that word!

Okay peoples, have a great Friday night. Off to watch Season 3 Episode 1 of LOST on HULU – dang I love that show, and I am big Sawyer fan!


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

*WARNING* – vegan cheese to die for! and camping too!

Dreaming of Vegan Cheese? I know you are!

Hey peeps! Happy Wednesday! I hope you all had a fab Valentine's Day. We went camping with the kids – I  know, not very romantic but we had alot of fun anyways. On the way home, I finally got my crippled hands (get it? I have RA - crippled hands?! haha) on some Daiya Vegan Cheese! Yeah baby! I was at Whole Foods in Henderson, NV and decided to see if they had any of this taking-the-vegan-world-by-storm cheese stuff in stock. At first I could not find it *sigh* but I finally asked some nice WF dude and we found it in the pizza/olive section. It was in plastic containers, so I am guessing they buy it in bulk? Who knows…I bought two kinds - yellow cheddar and white cheesy Italian – It kind of looks like cheese, but who cares what it looks like – WHAT DOES IT TASTE LIKE??!!???  That is the ultimate question for all you "wanna-be-vegans-but-wont-commit-cuz-you-love-cheese" people! jk - (BFF you know who you are! hee hee).


Daiya Italian Shredded and Cheddar Shredded

It kinda has a crumbly-shredded texture

So this raw girl decided to do some actual vegan cooking!

I am still trying to stay clear of gluten for the most part and these Trader Joe's Brown Rice Tortillas were a nice alternative. They are really stiff so they would be hard to eat right out of the bag. I decided to make a yummy quesadilla with my new non-cheese find.


This was one screaming-good quesadilla –with grilled onions and peppers – I thought I died and went to cooked food Heaven.

Check out the melty not-cheese action! Got it going on baby!

I wanted to play a Barry White song!

Can't get enough of your love baby! Oh yeah it was that good.


Daiya not-cheese rocks the house people! I mean it was really melty and greasy (in a good way) like real cheese.


And I think it tasted like cheese – although I have never been a huge cheese connoisseur. If I think about cheese too long, visions of spores, molds, and fungus fill my head – hee hee – its twu- its twu!



The verdict: Me like 'em Daiya not-Cheese!



Hey, we went to the Valley of Fire in Nevada over the weekend and took the whole fam damily camping. Even flew in the college kid to spend the weekend with us. The red sandstone scenery was spectacular. You will love this place if you are into rocks - rocks are awesome by the way – of course I am a geologist so I am partial. Check out this pic my son took of an arch in the park. Amazing.

valley of fire Cool arch – looks like a scorpion tail

valley of fire

Cool campsite at Arch Rock Campground


valley of fire Another cool shot of the campground – we used to have a big trailer and F350 when the kids were little. Now we just tent it. We like the easy set up. I could live in a tent and plan to for a few years when we retire – cannot wait!

valley of fire

It was 40 degrees in the manana, I have 3 layers of pants on and 2 tops and a jacket on! People with RA get really cold (in general). All the kiddos are still sleeping in the tent~


valley of fire

My raw breakfast – GoRaw Chocolate Granola with Brazil Nut Milk and my Sierra Sunrise Cocktail (juice). And while we are on the subject, as far as nut milks go, Brazil Nut milk is my all time fave! I also packed three days worth of Massaged Kale Salad, Carrot Juice, sprouted bread with some coconut butter, oranges and apples, avocados (of course), veggie burgers, Pure Bars and Larabars, and a vegan cookie – so I stayed about 85-90% raw on a three day camping trip – not bad eh? I did have one handful of popcorn before the fam buttered it up – man do I miss popcorn on the raw diet!


valley of fire

My Chiquitita


The Valley of Fire is a great place to see some thrust fault action. Younger, Jurassic sandstone is found beneath the older Cambrian Limestone in this area. I came here for a geology field trip back in my college days – I am surprised I can remember it. I am sure you have heard about geologists – hardcore partiers– hey, but not me! lol (in case my kids read this blog.)