Compassionate Living

By Spyder Venym
The Vegan Spyder

Bye Bye Kitt Ten

Yes... I did it. I brought the kitten to the shelter. Spunky little guy. But, really, in the end, it was the best decision. I hear he's torturing, I mean... PLAYING with the other kitties at the shelter. It is a NoKill shelter and he is so uniquely interesting that I am certain he will not have trouble finding a home. 

As much as I love animals, I have to say that my current living arrangement does not really suit any MORE animals. I think there are plenty already... plenty in a small space. Cleaning up after my pets is almost a full time job! Dog food, cat food, litter, scoop and poop, water spills, muddy paws, furball puke, grass puke, fish food, fish filters, water change, BABY FISH! (awww cute)... It's any wonder I get anything else accomplished. Can't forget the take the dogs to pee, strolls in the park, lugging 40lb bags of dog food out to the car, 20lb bags of litter. It's a chore! My furkids are just as much a chore as the regular human kind. No one is going to change my mind on that one. But I do it everyday because I love my furbabies. 

Nothing to report on the food front. I have to remember to take pictures of my meals so I can post them with the recipes. 

Stay Safe & Have Fun!

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Email Blogging? Really?


Testing Testing. Blogging via email. I may start doing this for convenience..



Stay Safe & Have Fun!The Vegan Spyder

And Life Takes Over

When I noticed that it has been nearly a year since I last put an entry here, I will admit, I was a little shocked. It certainly hasn't seemed that long to me. Time flies. And so many things have changed in my life in the last little while. Some sad things happened, some changes both big and little.

And now. Things are AWESOME. I am happy. I am healthy. I am trying to live each day to the fullest. I will not settle for less than I deserve. I will live my life passionately, fully, completely. 

I have a new kitten. He is as of right now, Unnamed. I tend not to name my animals for a while. They usually grow into their names. So, for now he is kitten. I found him in Schomberg. I decided to stop in at the local feed shop to see if they sold kitty litter. It was on the way and could potentially save me the trip into the plaza, people, parking, chaos! BLECH.... I remember clearly what a hot day it was, one of the warmest this summer for sure. I asked if they had litter and she asked if I wanted a cat with that. Of course I said no, but who can resist looking at a kitty. And it was a baby kitty. Who can resist picking up a baby kitty? So I picked it up. "He is SO cute... and um, infested with fleas".... she can't keep him in the store because there are store cats and they can't get fleas and she can't take them home because her dogs would eat it. She is calling the rescue places but they are closed or not answering. Time is ticking and her options are limited. 

Carolina to the rescue. I will take him and drop him off at the shelter in Barrie. Drive to the shelter. It's closed. I bring him home until I can get him to the shelter. I de-flea him. I give him a bath. I de-worm him. I feed him. He is in quarantine. I really should have dropped him off. He weaseled himself into my heart. He is precious. Some lady picked him up off the middle of Highway 9. He was moments away from being pancake. The pads of his paws were charred and peeling. You can imagine how hot the asphalt is in the middle of the day!!!! Poor little guy. Pathetically CUTE and I LOVE HIM! He may still be Mark's kitty though  Maybe....

I am now a Cave Dweller. Indeed. I rent the upstairs of my house out to my friend. It's a GIANT relief financially for sure. It's a temporary measure but the long-term outcome is very beneficial for me. 

I have cut wheat mostly out of my life. I still occasionally cave and have foccaccia or pizza mmmmm but really avoid it most of the time. It has made a big difference overall in my health too. I am less bloated, less phlegmy, less "fuzzy" in the head. I would say overall a GOOD choice.

I feel motivated. I feel encouraged. I will be posting recipes and pictures of food for my sister Goofy who is seriously considering a more animal-friendly diet. I would love to be able to show her how easy it is to be a compassionate eater while still being able to enjoy flavours and hearty meals. Simple, healthy, inexpensive, compassionate meals. 

I will be going through all the already posted recipes and updating the tags so searching for recipes will be easier

I look forward to feeding your cravings for delicious foods!

Stay Safe & Have Fun!

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I'm Back From A Long Voyage...

... the voyage of life.

Life has this tricky way of coming between you and the things you love to do. Life has been hectic with things coming and going. I did some gardening. I did some traveling. I did some job hunting. I did some volunteer research. I am volunteering. I am working part-time. I am helping run a business. I am training to do other volunteering. I am going out and meeting new people. I am mending a broken heart. I am living. I am breathing... deeply. I am smiling. I am bursting with love that needs to be shared with everyone.

I have turned another corner and life is just spread out before me. I feel as if there is so much opportunity, so many discoveries, so many fascinating and fantastic things to see and do. I feel like I know what I want. I feel a new sense of empowerment. I am sad, but I feel unburdened. I was carrying around all this weight on my shoulders that I was never aware of. It's such a strange sensation this elation with a heavy heart. It's unlike anything I have experienced. I have butterflies in my stomach, the anticipation of tomorrows unknown discoveries, accomplishments and opportunities. My heart, dull, aching numbness.

FOOD! This is what my blog is SUPPOSED to be about! And I have been feeling INSPIRED in the kitchen lately. I have recently cooked several yummy delights which I would like to share with you. Fast, simple, tasty and you would never know that no animals were harmed, killed, abused or forced into participating in this meal.

Until then (which I promise won't be as long as you think),

Stay Safe and Have Fun!
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Pan Seared Tofu w/ Broccoli Stirfry

Most people really don't like tofu! The idea that tofu CAN be tasty is foreign to many people as they can't get by the white solid glob. Tofu really doesn't have any flavour and will take on the flavour of anything you put on it or cook it with.

Pan Seared Tofu with Stirfry Broccoli

Pan Seared Tofu with Broccoli Stirfry
TOFU

- firm tofu
- soy sauce
- Caribbean spice w/ roasted garlic (this is a seasoning)

Prepare this ahead of time. Slice the tofu into 1/2" slices.
Lay them out flat in a dish.
Splash soy sauce over the slices, just enough to "colour" all the slices. The excess will run over into the bottom so they soak.
Put in the fridge and flip them after about an hour.

STIRFRY BROCCOLI


2 cups raw broccoli, chopped into bite size pieces
1 cup mushrooms, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 tbsp sesame seeds
1 tbsp soy sauce

For the tofu, heat a pan really hot on medium-high heat.
When the pan is really hot, add a few tablespoons of vegetable oil and make it heat up.
When this is nice and hot, add the slices of tofu.
Sprinkle some Caribbean spice over top of the slices and let fry until crisp. It may look burned only because the soy sauce will have darkened the tofu. To make sure it does not burn, flip on over and check the texture. It should feel crispy, not hard and not soft. It can be flipped when it feels this way.
Flip tofu slices, add some spice to the other side.
When cooked, flip one more time and cook for approx. 1 minute to allow the spice to saturate into the tofu.

While the tofu is cooking, heat up another pan.
When hot, add some vegetable oil (I only use about 1 tbsp)
Throw in the onions and stir around. When the onion starts to separate, throw in the mushrooms and the broccoli and stirfry until it reaches the desired texture (some people like it their veggies crisp, others like them to be a little softer)
Toss in the sesame seeds and soy sauce, stir and cook for one minute.

Serve tofu and broccoli with rice of quinoa (pictured is rice cooked in veggie chicken bouillon and sweet chili sauce)


If Slaughterhouses Had Glass Walls

I know I said I would not shove animal rights down people's throats, but I always come across things that make me so angry at human kind that I cannot help but feel I need to show them why factory farming is SO wrong! Most people will not watch this video. Most people would rather not know because knowing would make them feel guilty (for at least a fraction of a second) and we can't feel guilt. We are conditioned to turn a blind eye to suffering. As long as we do not acknowledge that this exists, then, in our tiny human brains, it doesn't. It continues to happen every day because we choose not to see it, because we prefer to live in a fantasy world where life is perfect.

I am guilty. Guilty of enjoying the pleasures of meat. Guilty of licking the last bit of flavour off my fingers. Guilty as each and everyone one of you. And then, I took my blinders off. I allowed myself to see what I was really eating. I allowed myself to feel what they feel. I allowed myself to realize that I was contributing to their suffering. And this changed my life forever. I can no longer imagine getting pleasure from eating a plate full of flesh that came from the suffering of others. I can no longer support the murderous meat and dairy industry in any capacity. And even if we aren't eating their flesh, we use them to serve our purposes, condemning them to a life of servitude and slavery.

It's sad. It's terrible. It proves to me, without a reasonable doubt, that human beings have a LONG way to go before we can call ourselves civilized. We are not. We are barbaric at best. We have not come far from our caveman days. In fact, I think we have digressed to a point far lower than common beast. We are worse. Far worse.

For some reason the video won't embed, so here is the link:  

I cried throughout this video, imaging the pain, suffering and terror these living, breathing, intelligent beings endure every day for the sake of feeding YOU. I always tell people that I am not against eating meat... I am against factory farming which makes meat as inanimate as bricks and cars. Pushing living, breathing beings through machines, packing living, breathing beings in crates, shipping living, breathing beings in all weather, sorting living, breathing beings into cages.

How did humans get so cruel? Why are humans so cruel? The average human being buys their meat in neat little packages in the store. There is no clue under the little clear window of the agony the animal endured before it made its way to your plate. Yet some of the people that work in these industries seem to get so much pleasure from hurting these animals. Whipping, kicking, stomping, raping, assaulting these poor creatures. Why is a dog so love and cherished while a cow is hung from its hind leg and slaughtered. Why do you cry when a dog is left to die by the side of the road but turn a blind eye when thousands of chickens are left to die in their cages.

There must be some reward for their suffering. If you believe in life after death and reincarnation, perhaps these slaughtered beasts go on to a wonderful place full of peace, tranquility, love and affection. For my sake, I hope this is true. Death is truly the best thing to happen to any animal in a factory farm, for in death there is no pain. There is no humiliation. There is no more sadness. There is no more fear.

In death, there is only peace.

Apologies in Advance - Sorry Sorry

I wanted to take this opportunity to THANK YOU for being so patient as I go through my old blogs and tag them for recipes. I imported many of my blogs from my old MSN spaces and most of the tags and comments were lost. As I am putting the focus on Vegan food to spread the word that animal free eating can be tasty, easy, affordable and FAST! Many of my meals take less than half hour to prepare, unless it's soup! I let my soup cook for HOURS because I just love the way the flavours combine and everything gets so soft and tender.

There appears to be NO way to tag a blog entry without it republishing and resending out notifications. For this I apologize.

Stay Safe & Have Fun
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Now or Never

I was looking through some old posts and updating some lost links. (this happens when you move things around). I found an entry from 2009 with a song that really meant something to me.
Knowing the people around me and the issues affecting them, I thought I was re-post this for inspiration and encouragement. I should really take my own advice ... really.

Now or Never - Digital Summer

[Verse One]
Some people spend their whole life waiting around
For the chance to become something else,
But if you're not happy then just look around
The only one here to blame is YOURSELF!

[Chorus]
[Its now or never]
So DON'T
Hesitate
To GO!
With this all the way
Cause in this life
Its now or never,
And DON'T!
Be afraid
To TAKE!
Pleasure with the PAIN!
HERE IT COMES!
It's NOW OR NEVER!
[Never gonna stop,
Never gonna stop,
Never gonna GIVE THIS UP!]

[Verse Two]
Its never too late
And don't ever look back,
Cause there's no future in the past
If you want to change your life
I think you should know
The door is open but its closing FAST!

[Chorus]
[Its now or never]
So DON'T
Hesitate
To GO!
With this all the way
Cause in this life
Its now or never,
And DON'T!
Be afraid
To TAKE!
Pleasure with the PAIN!
HERE IT COMES!
It's NOW OR NEVER!
[Never gonna stop,
Never gonna stop,
Never gonna GIVE THIS UP!]

[Hook]
There's two types of people that live in this world
So ask yourself which type are you?
The type that just needs to be told what to do
Or the type to make your dreams come true
They can all come true
DON'T YOU STOP NOW!

[Chorus]
[Its now or never]
So DON'T
Hesitate
To GO!
With this all the way
Cause in this life
Its now or never,
And DON'T!
Be afraid
To TAKE!
Pleasure with the PAIN!
HERE IT COMES!
It's NOW OR NEVER!
And DON'T
Hesitate
To GO!
With this all the way
Cause in this life
Its now or never,
And DON'T!
Be afraid
To TAKE!
Pleasure with the PAIN!
It's NOW OR NEVER!
[Never gonna stop,
Never gonna stop,
Never gonna GIVE THIS UP!]

Banana Oatmeal Bread

I love Banana Bread. This recipe is from my pre-vegan days. I have modified it to be animal friendly! I have listed the changed ingredients next to the original ingredients. Most things can be altered to be animal friendly! Even things that you would traditionally think can't be! This is one of my staples and a classic favourite all around!  Enjoy!


Banana Oatmeal Bread

Preheat the oven to 375 F

1/2 cup softened butter (vegan margarine or alternative)
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
(egg replacer, I use ground flax seeds and water)
1/4 cup milk
(I use non-dairy alternative, usually rice milk or soy milk)
2-3 bananas
1-1/2 cups flour
1 tbs baking powder
1/3 cup old fashioned oats
1 tbs brown sugar
1 tbs old fashioned oats

Mix together butter (or alternative) and sugar until creamy. Add eggs (or egg alternative) and bananas and mix. Add flour, baking powder and 1/3 cup of oats and continue mixing until it's all well combined.

Pour into a baking pan and spread it out evenly.

In a small cup mix the extra brown sugar and oats together and sprinkle over the top.

Bake for 50 minutes (or until a toothpick comes out clean) and cool.

I love the oats on the top - makes it look really pretty and gives the top of the banana bread a lovely crispy crunch!  Most people have no idea there are oats in the banana bread.

Food Glorious Food

I think I will be taking this blog back to the direction of one of my most favourite topics:  FOOD. Oh food, how I love to hate you! And love to eat you! I LOVE LOVE LOVE food. Most people see me and don't believe I am Vegan mostly because I am FAT! Yes... I am FAT! Not because the food I eat is bad for you in the way that fast-food is bad for you. Hardly! In fact, most of everything I cook and eat is deliciously WHOLESOME! So... why am I so fat? Easy... I love to eat and have zero ability to monitor my portions and I am LAZY! LAZY LAZY LAZY! I don't know why I am so lazy, but I just am. I am not like some of those "other" fat people who tell you they don't understand why they can't lose weight. I am completely aware of the reason I cannot lose weight. I love to eat! I LIVE to eat! Food,  food, food. Oh how I love thee!

As much as I want to spread the word that factory farming is horrible for the animals, for the people consuming the animals and for the planet, I find that most people are turned off by knowing the facts. Sure, the facts are important. The facts are what made me become a Vegan. The facts are there for everyone to see and learn. But, human beings will do what they want when they want it and shoving gruesome facts down someone's throat is certainly not going to make any difference in the grand scheme of things.

So, how about we try to convert people to the Vegan way by talking more about the glorious and delectable yum-yums one can prepare without harming nary a single living creature! Vegan food for me is an opportunity to show people that you can titillate the tastebuds without hurting any living beings. And I love to cook for people. I love to shock people that something I made is completely animal free and just as if not more delicious than its animal-laden alternative!

I will try to go back to posting recipes and pictures of the yummy things I cook. I used to post pictures and recipes a while back... but got away from that. If only my honey can remember to bring the camera home... I can take pictures of my yummy eats to share with you.  They say pictures speak volumes so a recipe without a picture isn't going to do this justice!

I will still be including details about other vegan goodies that I discover along the way as well... And I cannot promise that I will not include any animal activist posts as the animals are still the main reason I am a Vegan!

Stay Safe & Have Fun

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Recent Posts

  1. Bye Bye Kitt Ten
    Wednesday, September 05, 2012
  2. Email Blogging? Really?
    Wednesday, August 01, 2012
  3. And Life Takes Over
    Wednesday, August 01, 2012
  4. I'm Back From A Long Voyage...
    Tuesday, September 06, 2011
  5. Pan Seared Tofu w/ Broccoli Stirfry
    Thursday, March 24, 2011
  6. If Slaughterhouses Had Glass Walls
    Thursday, March 24, 2011
  7. Apologies in Advance - Sorry Sorry
    Wednesday, March 23, 2011
  8. Now or Never
    Monday, March 21, 2011
  9. Banana Oatmeal Bread
    Sunday, March 20, 2011
  10. Food Glorious Food
    Sunday, March 20, 2011

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