Picnic Lunch: Treat Yo’ Self!

Happy Thursday Everyone!

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Yup! A double dose of Picnic Lunch this week! Why?

Why not?! Welcome to the first installation of Picnic Lunch: Treat Yo’ Self!

BTW we’re sure Donna meant, “Fine {Faux} Leather Goods.” ūüôā Here’s one of my favorites… eco-friendly Matt & Nat Bags. On my “to treat myself” list… but I digress…

Something that comes up a lot when talking to folks about veganism is the question, “Isn’t it hard to stick to such a strict diet?” ¬†

A) Nope. It’s awesome.

B) It’s not really restrictive. It’s awesome.

C) We’re looking at this all wrong!!! ¬†It’s awesome!

My decision to not consume animal products isn’t a punishment or a sacrifice. It’s something I get to do! It’s a privilege. It’s a privilege that I honor and hold in high regard AND it’s a way that I “treat myself!”

For folks that are thinking about taking the plunge into compassionate waters, for folks just trying to make more space for different nourishment options and even for you folks who feel that a bacon sealed tomb is a sign of a life well lived– I hope you’ll open yourself up to this point of view.

The food that we, choose or have access to, put in our bodies is literally what’s fueling us. Our caloric consumption literally gets sent out and enmeshed with all the fibers of our being. So, if we are lucky enough to have some¬†choice around our food, it seems like we should consume consciously.

We’re giving our bodies the right materials to go forth into this sometimes challenging and chaotic world. And it’s my belief, that this extends beyond the physical. {I’m not going to talk ya’ll yet about energetic components of this, cortisol and biological evidence. I meant what I said when I invited you bacon lovers to the conversation.. I’m going to ease ya’ll in… I’ll be gentle.} This means that when I encourage you to “Treat Yo’ Self!” with a diverse and nutritious plant based diet to fuel your body, I also think you should engage and try to satisfy your sight, smell, heart and spirit!

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Treat Yo’ Self Mindfulness Practice

IMAGINE (meditate or practice) THIS:

Carving out some space in your busy week to treat yourself to a date night at home. Pause. Take a breath and ask your body what it needs. Something warm? Something light and green? Something quick because you want to take a walk after dinner and still get to bed early? Something you ate as a kid?

Plan accordingly and include prep time! Dinner prep reservation at 4pm? Sure! It’s five o’clock somewhere!

Set out all your ingredients like they do in those cooking shows! Stay present with each step. Have you ever seen that shade of golden beet before… seriously… like ever in nature? Have you ever stopped to smell a meyer lemon versus a regular one? Do you notice how the smells of herbs intensify as you chop them?? Have you ever minced something and paid attention to the wonder of your body’s ability to… mince something?

Everything done? Feeling like you’re going to finally represent and bring plant based honor to Top Chef??? Everything look less than perfect but smells delicious? Awesome.

Take a seat. Don’t turn on the television. Maybe turn on some music but not too loud. Get yourself a large glass of water with some citrus or cucumber (oh, you fancy huh?) Take a look at your masterpiece! Bring it up to your noise! Waft like you’re a¬†sommelier at a five star restaurant!

Take your time taking bites. Taste parts of your meal separately. Taste them together! Use your fancy water to toast your fabulous self dominating another day and taking time to honor yourself with a date night and a great meal!

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Feel any differently about the relationship to food, your body and your heart?

I know that our lives aren’t setup to have these luxurious date nights all the time. I’m as guilty as the next person of eating in front of my computer while I get some work done now and then, but I try to keep it at a minimum. This practice can be done in so many different variations and at different levels. Maybe it’s just five breaths before you start eating. Maybe it’s a slow down after to see how you feel from what you consumed. Maybe it’s just a quick internal toast to yourself!

Here’s one of my favorite meals to treat my mind, body and spirit. Fancy finger food night: Bread, Almonds,¬†Vegan Cheeseball, Olive Tapenade, Dried Fruit and Roasted Broccolini!

unnamed-1This meal is quick, easy and has so many different combinations! It also slows me down and cues me into the process as I assemble my plate and then assemble each bite before I eat it. Most importantly, it feels fancy like I’m treating myself!

It’s all a practice in mindfulness and a celebration!

So is it hard to stick to such a “strict diet?” Click on some of the links above and you tell me! The food industry in our country is a complicated one and not without conflict (including vegan food industry) but we can minimize our harm to the world around us. There are so many beautiful and delicious ways we can treat ourselves and, though some would like to have us believe it, our pleasure doesn’t have to be another’s pain. This way you can enjoy, celebrate and consume with no conflict to your mind, body and spirit!

Go ahead revolutionaries- the hustle is real- take a night to “Treat Yo’ Self!”

In COM|PASSionate and RAVENOUS Appetite,

Traci

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Traci is a COM|PASSionate vegan foodie and diligent student of interconnections.  COM|PASSion (Intention towards passionate compassion) drives their own healing journey as well as informs their healing practices. They offer themselves here to this space to feed, nourish and create dialogue over shared conversational meals and celebrations.

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”

 

 

 

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Picnic Lunch

Good Morning Everyone!

We know it’s Tuesday~ “Where is our Tarot Tuesday scream the people?!” Well our resident COM|PASSionate Tarot-ist (Read it out loud‚Ķ it’s my new favorite way to describe the¬†magic that Kaeti brings to the REVOLUTION) is off doing some healing inspiration finding and field research for a couple of weeks so we thought it would be a great time to introduce a couple of new blog series! Up for today:

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Good Morning COM|PASSionate REVOLUTIONARIES!

Traci here. For those that may be visiting from past vegan blogging lands, you might know me as Guava or one half of Vegangelical. I’m a queer vegan femme-inist of color who practices in the healing modalities of talk therapy and yoga. I grew up on the Japanese American (family from Hawaii) version of meat and potatoes‚Ķ aka meat and rice. I’ve been vegan for around six and half years. Here are some¬†things you should know about me:

  1. I like LOVE food. Food is a way that we nurture and fuel ourselves. Food is a literal interaction with our environment and engages all of our senses. Food can link us into our past, situate us in our present and help us invest in our future. Food can often transcend generational divides and create a center point for celebration and community building.
  2. I’m not a nutritionist. Nor am I a vegan just for health reasons. However, I appreciate folks that enter veganism from this entry point and believe that I am MUCH healthier in mind, BODY¬†and spirit since honoring my person with this compassionate lifestyle. I’ve also picked up a lot of physical health information since instituting consciousness into my food consumption. Most notably, I’m just more tapped into my body’s wants/needs. I’ve started to listen- so my body’s started to have dialogue with me- knowing it doesn’t have to be screaming before I check in.
  3. I’m not an immaculate environmentalist. I believe in the power of a plant based diet to help with a lot of our current environmental challenges but it hasn’t been the center point of my practice- a place where I’m still learning. I believe in food not lawns but am also guilty of having vegan take out boxes in my trashcan.
  4. I don’t believe that veganism is universally or equally accessible to all humans. I wish it was because I believe so deeply in it’s healing power- especially in relationship to my own marginalized identity pieces. However, I am also passionately invested in us finding systems that can look directly at flaws, even if those flaws are within our own communities/movements, break cycles of violence against all animals, human or otherwise, and institute sustainable patterns where folks have agency to prioritize self-nurturing and healing.
  5. Hey, crazy vegan, each of those statements sound like a contradiction wrapped in an enigma. What does this “smorgasbord” that you speak of include anyway? You’re right! It is! This world, who we are as we navigate it, the way we choose to traverse it and what we need to heal ourselves, our local/cultural communities and our global community is full of complications and intersections. I want to hold those complications and intersections¬†so that we can be in an honest conversation about integrated healing.

That’s the complicated way of saying– ¬†I’m really excited to share tips, tricks and recipes with you all. You’ll see some recipes that are good for the mind, some that are good for body, some that are good for your spirit and, when serendipity allows, recipes that are good for all three! We’ll also talk about how to find safety and growth in living consciously and connected, the ways we come to understand what we each individually need to nurture ourselves and parse out what our responsibility is to create nurturing space for everyone.

Okay, let’s end there as to not spoil our appetites.

Forks up! Napkins tucked into shirts? Roll up your sleeves. All in?

Good me too! I’ll start prepping for our next gathering¬†and we’ll re-convene over some delicious COM|PASSionate fare!

In COM|PASSionate and RAVENOUS appetite,

Traci

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Traci is a COM|PASSionate vegan foodie and diligent student of interconnections.  COM|PASSion (Intention towards passionate compassion) drives their own healing journey as well as informs their healing practices. They offer themselves here to this space to feed, nourish and create dialogue over shared conversational meals and celebrations.

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.”

Hippocrates 

 

Engaged Theory Makes Change Possible

Happy Friday REVOLUTIONARIES!!!

We talk a lot about collaboration, community and, of course, living consciously + connected. We talk because it’s important to be in conversation about these things. We also want there to be action, we want to be a part of the action, we want to inspire you all to take action and we want to engage in action together!

We also realize that to live consciously and connected in this world can be a daunting task. Especially for those of us that already feel and experience things with intensity and vibrance. It is with this in mind that we want to honor those doing this exhausting and powerful work. We want to honor those out there that are courageous enough and dedicated enough to fight and create space for all of us to have these important and scary conversations so that we can heal together on a holistic level. We want to make sure everyone knows about this amazing conference that’s happening…

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The Vegan Praxis of Black Lives Matter

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Go visit Sistah Vegan¬†, donate to the cause¬†and get involved in the conversation because…

“Engaged theory makes change possible.”

Carol J. Adams

In COM|PASSionate REVOLUTION,

The COM|PASSionate REVOLT Team

Ahimsa + Sangha

Happy Friday beautiful, shining, powerful community!

We just wanted to send everyone off into the weekend with a little a lot of warm fuzziness!!!

FarmSanctThankYou

Last Friday we tested the power of the sangha (community) and practiced ahimsa (non-harm) with an acoustically accompanied yoga class and dinner event to raise donations for Farm Sanctuary! Coffee Shop Covers for COM|PASSion was a lovely night of good yoga, great food and heart warming community building! Deep Dog Yoga opened their doors and Joni Marie Newman, vegan chef and cookbook author (Just the Food), spoiled our bellies with tacos from Fusion Food in the Vegan Kitchen!!! We talked yoga and veganism and life. We can’t think of a better or more healing way to have spent a Friday night!

We are happy to say that we were able to send off $100 worth of love to Farm Sanctuary! You can see just a few of the furry and feathered faces that you supported with your COM|PASSionate donations above from our trip to the farm last year! We had our hearts set on adopting some turkeys this past Thanksgiving to come stay at revolution headquarters but with a possible move on the horizon for the core COM|PASSionate REVOLT team we were really happy to be able to support in a different way with your help and generosity!

Thank you so much community! What an amazing way to start of the the new year with an intention of COM|PASSion!!!!

In gratitude,

Lila, Turkey Lurkey, The Largest Brown Eyes You’ve Ever Seen, Mischevious Goats, Lounging Piggies and, of course, The COM|PASSionate REVOLT Team

Healing + The Holidays

Gratitude

The holidays can evoke so many things for so many of us. They can be dreaded, nurturing, devastating or just plain old complicated. For some of us these couple of months can seem like a time to reconnect, rest and get back in touch with our families and friends while many of us are doing our best to stay grounded until the storm passes.

I felt immensely grateful to spend this recent Thanksgiving in a way that felt truly honoring of where I’m at and what I believe in my heart to be consistent with the spirit of the season.

I had the good fortune of connecting with a wonderful yoga community (Deep Dog Yoga, Yorba Linda) this past year and was asked to lead a gratitude practice at the studio on Thanksgiving morning. Skye¬†was all set¬†to accompany with acoustic guitar, voice and ukulele¬†and at the last moment we re-connected with Jamie Jones of Mahoroba USA¬†who brought their healing drum knowledge to our practice! The room was filled with old students, new students, friends and families. Yogis of all different experience levels– including those, I’m sure, that didn’t identify as yogis at all. We took deep breaths together and contemplated “Gratitude” or Kritajna in Sanskrit which translates to “Cultivated Consciousness.” Poses were modified, options were taken as desired and, maybe most importantly, physical practice was de-prioritized beneath need and self-care.

We gave lots of hugs and headed off to our different spaces. I chose to cook and gather with chosen family around compassionate vegan fare. We ate and rested.

It was the first time the holiday space had been completely consistent with where my heart (which in all honesty was feeling a little bit worn down) wanted to be. I offered what I could. I prepped and rested. I didn’t put myself in spaces where I needed to educate others or defend myself. I kept my space free of anyone and anything that might inhibit safety or cue my already hyper consciousness into the reality of trauma and violence in the world. This included¬†not compromising (or apologizing for) my personal practice of ahimsa (non-harm) in order to gather which is often a conflicted place for me. Any other expectations that popped up unrequited I breathed thankfulness¬†for the present moment into and washed them away so I could see clearly all that I had in front of me.¬†I cultivated consciousness around the power of honoring¬†and acknowledging my own agency in creating a healing journey that was holding for myself.

Anyone who experiences “otherness” on any level knows that we’re often told that our experiences aren’t “real.” We are expected to engage in interactions and traditions that have different meanings for us than the world around us. I invite you to tap into the healing nature of connectedness this holiday season. Have gratitude for this.

Cultivate consciousness that brings you closer to your individual path of healing.

In Cultivated Consciousness,

Traci

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Traci is a queer vegan femme-inist yoga teacher and therapist striving to circle the metaphorical wagons of diverse queer community into digital and physical healing gatherings. She’s utilizing a lot of mashed potato and doggy snuggle medicine this holiday season.