Saturday, September 21, 2019

More Vegan Finds, Plants, Community, and Such!

With the many months I took off from blogging - I still have TONS of photos and things to share!  I'm trying to schedule a few blog posts in between to try and catch up, too!

Here you can see one of the painted rocks I found this year.

This was on the fairgrounds.

I'm still LOVING these Swapples!  If you haven't tried them yet you should!  They are VERY dense and VERY filling!  Soooo versatile, too!

I ended up grabbing 3 different flavors of these at the beginning of summer and they helped me in between meals during fair week.  They are a little dry but the flavor is good.

I'm having some ups and downs with my office plants lately.  I'm pretty sure it's because fall and winter are coming.  I remember that happening last year.  This is one of the plants that seem to be doing well lately.  It's one of my newer plants.  It's called a Dragon's Tongue.

Near the end of August I attended a community event in Irvine, PA, at the Wilder Museum.  There was a speaker from SUNY JCC highlighting the life of a local suffragist by the name of Elnora Monroe Babcock who was born in Freehold Township and grew up around Columbus, PA.  She went on to do AMAZING things in the Suffrage Movement throughout the state of New York, too!

This isn't one of my plants but it's a hanging basket I got for my mom for Mothers Day and it's still going strong!

This past summer I spotted a new-to-me product from Earth Balance and HAD to try it.  It doesn't taste extremely different from their other vegan butters but it is tasty!

I was going to safe this for a work lunch some day but I ended up having it for dinner one night in stead.  It has been way too long since my last vegan meal from Annie Chun's!

I'm pretty sure my new favorite shreds are from VioLife!  I got these at Mustard Seed but just spotted them LAST WEEK at my local Tops and I couldn't be happier about it!

I also spotted a new-to-new product from Gardein while at Giant Eagle in Erie, I believe.  They are still in my freezer and I haven't tried them yet but I'm thinking it will be SOON!

At first taste I wasn't overly thrilled with this Good Karma product but have since paired it with some things like Salsa and it wasn't too shabby.

This is a product that Hillary and I have been boasting about on IG.  I really enjoyed it and wish I would have bought 5 more!  I'm pretty addicted to it, actually!

And here is one of the new-to-me Amy's Kitchen products I found at the Erie Target a while back.  I really enjoyed this, too!

Friday, September 20, 2019

Vegan Baked Goods at Mustard Seed

It's been several weeks since we visited Mustard Seed in Ohio.  I really DO love that place!  I believe there are 3 locations.  My favorite is in Solon.  As you can see in this post - they have REALLY expanded their Vegan Baked Good Options!

I didn't buy any of the items in either of these photos but I wanted to feature them here and on IG.

What I did grab were some of these Mini Blueberry Muffins!  They were AMAZING!

They had a nice selection of cookies, muffins, cakes, pound cakes, cupcakes, etc.  And NOT just in one flavor...several flavors!

I mean...check out these Vegan Pound Cakes!

I have MANY more items to post from our last Mustard Seed Trip!  But there are SO MANY pictures and so little time.  I will try and pace myself to NOT overload you all!

I did also want to post this really cool Woodstock Guitar!  I think we found it at Sam Ash but I guess it could have been Guitar Center.  Too bad the Woodstock Anniversary - this year - fell thru.  I remember when I was in college a few of my friends went to one and I was going to try and go until my parents told me NO.  I was right at that 18 year old line but still lived and home so I didn't end up going.  A friend of mine brought back a Woodstock Grateful Dead Beanie Bear tho so that was cool!

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Some Animal Friends

Just a quick post today of some animal friends of late!  Here's one of the many goats that were at a local event recently.  I spend time with them each year.  A regional guy has all sorts of animals that he rescues and takes in and he specializes in goats, it seems.  

Last month I spent some time at the Jamestown Audubon and really enjoyed chatting with the turtles.  This lil guy is Lincoln.  I'm considering donating to his feed and care.  You can do so for at little at $20.  The turtles at the Audubon are rescue situations or those who have been neglected.

About 2 weeks ago I was on my way to work and this adorable dog was playing on a busy street and didn't have a tag.  I stopped my car in the middle of the road and wanted to make sure he didn't get hit.  Before I could get her - she jumped in my car.  She spent 60% of the workday with us in the office and then I took her to the Humane Society to see if she was chipped.  She wasn't.  They kept her.  I was already attached.  Later that day she was reunited with her family so that is good!

About a week earlier this cat followed me to my car.  I think it's a church cat - because that is where I park.  I haven't seen her since but she was pretty cool!

This is one of the cats at our local shelter/Humane Society and she was sitting inside this so matter-of-factly that I just had to take a photo!

And finally...Cricket.  Apparently I disrupted her slumber trying to take this pic!  LOL!

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Many Vegan Aldi Finds...But Some Others, Too!

Over the summer I noticed yet another gas station chain that started carrying more random vegan things!  YAY!  This Willy's brand of salsa had 2 or 3 of them that I tried.  I have to say it's unlike other salsas and I truly believe it's because of their punchy-use of bold cilantro.  I know cilantro is one of those things that some people love and others hate.  I've always liked it but I can see in some cases where the over the top use of it could give certain things that soapy taste.  For some reason the loads of cilantro worked here.  They also seem to love garlic.  Lucky for them...I love garlic, too!

Here's a pic of the new, local Falafel that is being made in-house at Total Evolution.  It's also vegan and pretty wonderful!  This was a HUGE sandwich!  You can pick your own toppings for it, too!

Prior to August, this was our set-up for camping season.  Our new-to-us-but-gently-used 5th Wheel is on the left and my parents Jayco is on the right.  I don't especially like the specific spot we had this year or last year but I didn't complain too much either.

Here's another meal I grabbed at Total Evolution this past summer.  You can build your own wrap.  Most places that tends to be the vegan option around here but you basically get lettuce, tomato, and onion.  I then see if places have salsa or a balsamic for the dressing...BUT...with Total Evolution they have some really neat things to include.  This one contained their in-house hummus, carrots, greens, sprouts, celery, tomato.  I've done variations of this from time to time and I will certainly start sharing more of them with you!

At our local Tops I have fell in love with a new product but that love comes with a hefty price tag so when I see them on sale I will grab one.  It's the line of products from The Coconut Collaborative.  In this pic, here, you will see the Chocolate Ganache.  When I opened the first one I thought...gee...I could eat all 4 in one sitting!  But, you know what?  They are so rich I could only eat one!

Many of the products in this post are new or new-to-me products from Aldi and that includes this one!  It's the Vegan Vegetable Potstickers!  They are tasty!

Another find at Aldi are these Eggplant with Yellow Pepper Raviolis!  I LOVED these and hope I can find them again soon!  There is another kind, I hear, but I haven't seen those locally yet.

I finally spotted their Vegan Sour Cream.  I grabbed some.  It was ok.  It was certainly good enough for the price!  A nice, cheaper alternative.  I would probably buy it again!

One of the one pot meals I did in the camper this year was squash with vegan margarine, vegan pepper jack cheese, and topped it with tortilla strips!  It know it doesn't look like much but it was VERY yummy!  I would categorize it as a vegan comfort food for sure!

I don't really have time to do a blog post YET re-capping fair week but I thought I would give you a little teaser for now.  These were our new work banners that were at our broadcast booth!

Moving on to a thing or two from Wegman's!  I did grab this to have the camper during fair week.  Let's just lasted about a day!

I can't remember which place I spotted these at since there were about 2 to 3 weeks I seemed to travel all over the country-side grocery shopping at various places.  I'm not sure if I grabbed them at Wegman's or Mustard Seed.  I don't think I went to Whole Foods Market, Whole Foods Co-Op, or Trader Joes during that specific time so it might have been Wegman's or Tops.  I'm leaning more towards Wegman's as the possibility.  They were easy to do in the microwave and for a nuke-able meal it was tasty!  I recommend vegan mayo and ketchup on them!

One thing I know I found at Tops was THIS!  Mango Sorbet!  I thought I would try it but didn't really have a WOW pre-judgement, however, when I had my first taste...I was blown away!  This was one of the BEST naturally-tasting mango flavored treats I think I have ever had!  YUM!

Also at Tops - right around the same time - I found these gorgeous watermelon radishes!  I knew I had to buy them since we don't usually see them available for purchase in our area!  I really enjoyed them.  I share them with my mom, dad, and 2 ladies at work and all for of them thought they didn't have much taste.  They were a sweeter flavor and not a spicier flavor like regular radishes usually are and I think that threw everyone off.  I think most people go for your 'standard' fruit or veggie and then when you ask them to try something new they already have a pre-judgement that they aren't going to like it.

When I saw this at Aldi this summer I knew I had to buy it because my local Aldi isn't consistent with what they carry so when you see it you should buy it because you don't know if or when it will be back.  I still have yet to open this but it sits nicely in my freezer until then!

And finally, another find at Aldi!  The first go around with these - that everyone was talking about - I didn't have them at my local store - but - I was able to find them this summer and tried them.  They were pretty good!  Next time I would like to try and top them like they did on the box...with mushrooms and onions...and greens, oh my!


Monday, September 16, 2019

Community Involvement & Family Time

Taking a look back at June 24th...our community did something special to celebrating the ratification of 100 years of Women's Right To Vote.

Our Courthouse bells rang 19 times at noon and many of us gathered for a rally and fellowship.  There were several speakers and those who dressed up and held signs.

My mom and dad were watching Trinity that day and the stopped over for the first part of it.  Trinity was a HIT.

She even made the front page of our paper the next day!  This is her and me holding signs.  It was a lovely day.  I'm part of the Suffrage Centennial Committee and there are LOTS of things planned thru the end of 2020 so you will be hearing a bunch more about these events soon!

Here is a photo of the Courthouse lawn with those who participated.  The brick building in the back is our local historical society.

Another thing that I haven't really blogged too much about is that when our company was sold DH and I spent two days in Erie to not only help with their 70th Anniversary for WICU but to get to know some of the people at the main office and such.  Here are a bunch of us passing out fans, coloring books, and sports bottles.

Another thing I was able to do in the middle of July was with our Zonta Membership.  Each year we do a "Summer Surprise" and we don't know where we are going or what we are doing until we leave for the evening.  This year - we didn't travel too far.  We had a private tour and history of our local, historical Struthers Library Theatre.  Many of us have been in the theatre fairly often but it was nice to have a behind the scenes look and really take our time.

And I mean...REALLY behind the scenes...this was backstage!  I just LOVE all of the old signs we saw.

Here is some of our membership enjoying the tour!

Earlier in the mom, dad, sister, Trinity and I went to Waldameer which is a theme park/adventure park in Erie.  It's been YEARS since I have been there but it was Trinity's first time so it was SO FUN!!!

On the way home that day she was super weird and starting sucking her toes like a thumb and I couldn't stop laughing.  Even funnier was the oh-so-serious look on her face while she was doing it!

Total Evolution really kept me fed this summer with all the running around!  WOWZA!  Here is their Avocado Toast - vegan style, of course!

And here is one of the build-your-own chia bowls.  I chose Peanut Butter, Granola, Raspberries, and it was great!  They use Soy Milk as a base.