100K Kombucha Giveaway!

Published November 18, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party
Pugsley, our newest house guest.

Pugsley, our newest house guest.

Hey guys! If you already follow the VDCP facebook page (if you don’t, please do!), then you know that I posted earlier today that I’d be doing a giveaway to celebrate passing the 100,000 hit mark here at the blog. Our newest house guest, Pugsley is seen here modeling the prize up for grabs. A Black Tea Kombucha Kit from VeganCuts.com!

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Just my little way of saying thanks for those of you that have been following the blog, for however long, and that have stayed through the recent content/name shift from Cameraphonevegan.com to VeganDerbyCatParty.com. As I said above, please go show the new facebook page some love. It was one of the only things I wasn’t able to change over and had to start completely anew with the name change, so it’s still just a fraction of what the old one was.

Thanks so much for reading, sharing, pinning, and commenting! The raffle ends Sunday November 24th, at midnight, Pacific time! :)

Ty

HERE’S THE LINK:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Coconut Curry Lentils w/ Miso & more derby pix!

Published November 7, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party
PFM!

PFM!

Oh hi!

This post is long overdue. I’ve been slacking both on the blog, and in actual derby for the last week & a half, but I’m going to try to knock this post out today, AND go to derby practice tonight. :) I’ve also got a little soup recipe for you. Another lentil recipe that doesn’t use any broth or bouillon (because we were out!) but still delivers lots of rich flavor from the coconut milk, spices, and miso. A perfect hearty meal after a tough practice! I’m also gonna include a few more pictures from scrimmage since they were so wonderfully snapped by the talented new hubby of one of our girls, Mr. Robert Bakie!

Team Black on the bench.

Team Black on the bench.

Team black in action.

Team black in action.

Mod Quad and I, battling it out!

Mod Quad and I, battling it out!

Jamming was THE BEST.

Jamming was THE BEST.

Coconut Curry Lentils w/Miso

olive oil for misting
1 medium onion, cut into thin half moons
4 cloves garlic, minced

1 can of coconut milk (I used light)
8 c. filtered water

1 c. lentils
3 medium carrots, chopped finely
1 large russet potato, chopped

3 tbsp. curry powder
2 tbsp. tamari (I use red sodium. You can use soy sauce/braggs/shoyu)
1 tsp. sea salt
1 tsp. thyme
1 tsp. cumin
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
dash cinnamon
dash ginger
dash of cayenne pepper
fresh ground pepper

1/4 c. white miso

Directions:

1. Mist a large pot with olive oil and raise to medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened and just a little caramelized, about 7 minutes. Add garlic, and cook for another minute. Deglaze pot with water and coconut milk.

2. Add all other ingredients except for miso. Raise heat to boiling, cover, and drop to simmer for 45 minutes. Taste for seasoning and simmer another 15 minutes, or until lentils are fully tender.

3. Remove from heat and stir in miso until it’s dissolved. Done!

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1st Scrimmage and Bang Bang Cafe, Seattle

Published November 5, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party
That's me on the far left of the pic trying to jam my way past team red!

That’s me on the far left of the pic, trying to jam my way past team red!

My long dreaded awaited 1st scrimmage was finally this past Sunday! When they asked me to skate in last month’s scrimmage, I only had two practices under my belt, and really wasn’t ready yet. I knew I’d have to skate this one, so I made the best effort I could, even with all the craziness of the last month, to get lots of practice in. Well, it definitely paid off. By last week I wasn’t even feeling too worried about it anymore. I felt like I had at least some skills to bring to the table this time, since we had lots of great coaches in last month.

It went really well! I ended up taking the worst spill of the day during warm up, before scrimmage, when I tripped over a downed skater, so all the hits and tumbles after that were no big deal. I even got to jam several times! (We rotated out the positions) Turns out I found that was much easier than blocking for me, at least for now. I spent a good chunk of time in the penalty box too. Mostly because I need to sit down and study the WFTDA rules. A lot. But I did learn a lot too, mostly about how not to re-enter the pack/track. Everyone said I did an awesome job, and it was honestly, exhilarating and SO MUCH FUN. (Sorry mom!)

More jamming for me!

Me playing pivot, even though I’m still not very sure how that differs!

Thomas was there watching, and snapped some photos while making friends with one of the other spectating derby misters.

Me & my purple helmet.

Me & my purple helmet.

Of course I still have just about EVERYTHING to learn about this sport, but this was a nice way to really see how some of the things we’ve worked on in practice were meant to be used. It was really satisfying to make them work on the track. Also the girls of PFM that I skate with are absolutely fantastic! It’s really a unique experience to be doing something with so many strong minded women, and have it be a really supportive and friendly environment to boot. I feel extremely lucky to be a part of this little bit of roller derby magic!

And what would Sunday practice be without brunch?!

On our drive home I went from not so hungry, to hungry like something fierce! (I think the adrenaline was starting to wear off.) I decided we should switch it up and head over to Bang Bang Cafe in Belltown. Which in retrospect, was a sort of appropriately named place to head over to after my morning. Bang Bang is actually the 1st place we ate in Seattle when we visited back in December 2011. It’s not an all vegan joint, but they do have vegan options like their famous Vegan Mac n Cheese (not pictured) and my fave, the VBLT. And they even gave me some ice to put on my very slightly bang banged chin… (you can’t even tell, mom!)

Post scrimmage smile!

Post scrimmage smile!

VBLT: avocado, lettuce, tomato, vegan bacon, veganaise

VBLT: avocado, lettuce, tomato, vegan bacon, veganaise

Vegan breakfast burrito. Not too fancy to look at but filled with tons of veggies, potatoes, beans, etc.

Vegan breakfast burrito. Not too fancy to look at but filled with tons of veggies, potatoes, beans, etc.

Anyway, as you might be able to tell… my mother (and most dedicated blog reader!) is not happy about all of this. For me, it’s one of the few times in my life that I’ve picked something really hard and really committed to it. And it’s also the best exercise I’ve done in my whole life, because I actually love skating, and don’t mind doing it. Since I’m 35, it was probably a good time to get my body used to physical activity. A little toning is welcome. However, I do now realize the value of the “padding” on my hips and butt, so if I lose anymore weight, I’m probably going to take up cake. You know, for safety. Either that, or maybe some more regular visits to Mighty O! ;)

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Lastly, a remarkable thing happened today! I found Midna & Ganon cuddling together in the blanket! Usually they pick two different parts, separated by at least one thickness, but they managed to sit together in near peace for a good twenty minutes this afternoon! The new apartment is kinda chilly, so maybe they’ll be able to forge a better relationship here. We shall see…

My new kitchen!

Published November 2, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party
2013 Capitol Hill, Seattle WA

2013 Capitol Hill, Seattle WA

I went ahead and updated the Ty’s Kitchen page with the new kitchen. (I missed the last two apartments, but they were sort of similar setups!)

This is my 2nd kitchen in Seattle. More cabinet space than I’ve had in years! Which is great so I can make the most of the counter space. The only thing that’s weird is that the fridge isn’t full size. It’s quite narrow and small, but given that our fridge was nearly empty half the time in our last place in 1st Hill, I guess it’ll be fine! This place is similar to our last 2 apartments in that it’s a 1/1 somewhere on the lower end of the 500-650 sq ft, but we LOVE the location and it has a nice layout. We hope to just stay put here until we’re ready for a house.

We got the last of our things out of the old place last night, so I just have to go drop off the keys today! So glad to have that over after doing this very drawn out move over the last 2 weeks! After that I’m going to head up to do a little last minute skating with the girls before scrimmage tomorrow. Every two weeks we have a minimum skills try out for girls interested in skating with PFM to get cleared to come to practice. So that’ll be a nice little way to warm up for tomorrow since I skipped practice on Thursday because of Halloween!

Hope you’re having a great weekend! :)

The move, the stress, the cats, the derby…

Published October 25, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party
Some of us didn't seem to be stressed in the slightest by the move.

Some of us didn’t seem to be stressed in the slightest by the move.

Hello! We now have almost all of our stuff at the new place, and Thomas even suffered through getting the internet hooked up. (I refused to deal with Comcast again!) Last week I was SO STRESSED from the move and a from a family health issue, that all I seemed to have time for was boxes, headaches, intermittent nausea, dizzyness, exhaustion, and… derby. So I’m taking another stab at writing this post on my lunch break today.

Getting myself to practice last Thursday was pretty rough, but in the end I figured skating, and hitting girls would probably be welcome stress relief. So I pushed pass my lethargy and car sickness, and drove the full 46 miles north from Tacoma to Shoreline. It was a good practice, and I got to work on some of the hitting skills I’ll need for my 1st scrimmage this Sunday. Though I was still super tough on myself all practice, I talked to the coach after who assured me that I’m doing great for 2 months (it’s actually a little less) of practices, so that was encouraging. Even though it really doesn’t feel that way right now… honestly, it’s hard to deny that I’m skating much better all the time. When I got out, I was due to meet Thomas at the old apartment to do some more packing and loading, and all I could think about was food. It’s been pretty chilly lately, and I was craving a nice, hot, comforting pizza, so we headed over to Mad Pizza. This is a large Over the Rainbow pizza with garlic & olive oil subbed for the garlic ricotta, and with vegan cheese. It comes with roasted tomatoes, yellow peppers, red onions, roasted garlic, and oregano. Totally hit the spot as I filled Thomas in on the night’s practice.

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Saturday, one of the girls from derby had a pumpkin carving party, and that was fun way to hang out with a few of them in a less stressful way. She had all kinds of fancy pumpkin carving supplies. I opted for sculpting out a bat shape instead of doing the traditional cutting and gutting. (Haven’t snapped a pic of the finished pumpkin yet!) In the end, the results of everyone’s hard work were pretty impressive!

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Sundays we have practice at 11AM. If you know me well at all, you probably realize what a labor of love this has been for me, and are probably in complete shock that I’m giving up partying on Saturday nights now in order to be in shape for a physical activity on a Sunday morning! Yes. IT IS REALLY DIFFICULT FOR ME. Yesterday might’ve been the worst morning yet, in fact. I stayed in bed until the last possible minute, but still managed to get my butt to practice. It was a hard endurance practice, but you know what?

I learned how to skate backwards quite a bit better. (Something I’ve really wanted to learn for a long time. I could barely do it for more than a few feet, super duper slow.) AND I was somewhat decent at skating sideways, so that a couple girls actually asked ME what I was doing. So there’s that. RIght now when it’s super hard and I get banged up or completely exhausted, these are the things that I’m focusing on. Not only that, I finally got to go out for brunch with a couple of vegan girls after practice!

We went to Wayward…

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Though I wasn’t super crazy about mine for an ironic reason.

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It tasted a bit too realistic. Eww, even during my meat eating years I never really ate sausage, and this tasted too much like real sausage to me! (Even though it probably doesn’t to a meat eater.) Luckily Thomas met up with us, so I was able to unload half on him. I usually get their tempeh bacon which just tastes like nicely seasoned tempeh, so this was unexpected, but I wanted that biscuit! The hashbrowns were awesome and cooked to perfection.

Afterwards we made a trip to the old apartment where I managed to get a bunch of stuff done before sitting down and falling asleep sitting against the wall. That’s right. Sitting up. Thomas was awesome, and did a lot on his own, and let me snooze for a bit.

Tomorrow I’m off and looking forward to finishing up all this apartment chaos. We’re also doing a Spa day in the evening for a derby social, so that will be a fantastic and well deserved indulgence. I’m hoping that more bonding with the ladies will help to build my confidence and sense of comraderie at practice. Thursday’s practice is dress up optional since it’s on Halloween, and I’m on the fence about going or not. Halloween is a pretty big deal in our house, so I may need to skip, even if it is the last practice before scrimmage. We shall see…

1st contact work & some Wayward

Published October 18, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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WOO! I had derby practice last night, and I got to do my 1st contact work! We were practicing pack work like pushing each other to block a jammer coming up on the outside edge of the track, as well as steering them off the track with leverage. (Sorry, I’m still not sure of the actual names of these maneuvers!) SO MUCH FUN! And I’m so glad too, because I’ll be expected to participate in the next scrimmage on November 3rd, and I need some skills! I had to sit out the one this month, even though I had just joined the team, because I had only attended two practices: one was a fit skate, and one was on jam skating (basically dance skating), but they’re considered mandatory unless you’re sick, injured or out of town. Hope we get a lot more of these type of practices in the next two weeks!

Thomas rode his bike up to the Rat’s Nest (where we practice) after work and met me, so we were both pretty hungry and decided to hit Wayward Vegan Cafe on the way home. He got his usual, the Wizard, and I got a nice healthy Bikini Bowl, which I’d had once before and was totally craving. It’s on their gluten-free menu and is comprised of quinoa, steamed kale, mandarin oranges, diced tomatoes, citrus marinated grilled tempeh, and served with a side of chipotle tahini. So good. Totally hit the spot. I’m trying to do clean, protein packed meals after workouts lately so I can reap the benefits of all this exercise more fully. A little more challenging since I have less time to cook with all the skating, but I thought this was an excellent restaurant meal. Hopefully once we’re settled into the new apartment, I can start doing some smarter meal planning to compensate.

Speaking of the new apartment… we’re officially moving Tuesday. So if I’m a little quiet for the next few days, that’s why. We haven’t packed a thing, but since we have 2 weeks to move, our attitude may be a little too casual. Tuesday we’re taking the big stuff over with a moving truck. Hopefully this weekend we can get most of the kitchen/bathroom/etc. stuff over there in little trips without having to make too big a deal about it. I hate moving. Not that you would know by how much I do it, but I’m hoping that we’ll be able to stay in the new place for a couple years or so, until we can get into a house.

Have a great weekend!

Ty

Post Derby Brunch: Spinach Tofu Scramble & Vegan Steak Hash

Published October 17, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Once a month, PFM brings in Coach Alex DeLarge to give us a killer on and off skates work out with tons of squats, drills, and running to build our strength and endurance. The rest of the week it also reminds us of how many muscles it takes to get in and out of a chair or go upstairs! Though I fared much better this past Sunday than last month, my body has not quite yet forgotten it completely. It’s Wednesday. :)

Driving home from practice I was famished, and all I could think about was tofu scramble and toast. Thomas had been out for a bike ride while I was gone, and felt equally eager for food. I knew we had a pack of sprouted tofu in the fridge and some onions that needed using, so I quickly came up with this protein packed menu as I gobbled down some [untoasted] bread with the last of a container of hummus. I also made us both a brunch cocktail to sip on as I went to work…

Mmm!

Mmm! Just enough Jack for two brunch cocktails!

I decided to make a spinach tofu scramble, and a vegan steak hash with some fingerling potatoes and some Gardein Beefless tips. I got the latter ready first so it could bake while the scramble came together.

Vegan Steak Hash

olive oil for misting
3-4 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/2 yellow onion, sliced into thin half moons
~2 c. fingerling potatoes, somewhat peeled and chopped
1 package Gardein Beefless Tips salt & pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400. Prepare a roasting pan or cookie sheet with a mist of olive oil. Spread out onions, garlic, and potatoes and mist with olive oil, grind some fresh pepper and salt on top and toss with hands to coat. Add Gardein and disperse evenly.

2. Bake for 20 minutes. Stir. Bake for another 20 minutes. Done!

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Spinach Tofu Scramble

olive oil for misting
1 yellow onion, sliced into thin half moons
4 cloves of garlic, minced
~8 oz. frozen chopped spinach (half a bag)
1 package of firm or extra-firm tofu, silken or regular will work
1-2 tbsp. tamari (or red sodium soy sauce/braggs/shoyu)
2 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. turmeric
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. dried thyme
cayenne pepper to taste, optional
salt & pepper

~1/4 c. nutritional yeast

Directions:

1. Spray a skillet with olive oil, and raise to medium heat. Add onions and cook until slightly softened, about 4 minutes. Add garlic and cook for an additional 2 minutes. Add spinach and lightly season with freshly ground salt and pepper. Cook until all the frost is off, about 5 minutes.

2. Crumble in tofu, and all other ingredients except nutritional yeast. Stir until well combined and heated through, about 5 minutes.

3. Remove from heat and stir in nutritional yeast.

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I had to chop my tofu to help the crumbling because it was the extra firm, sprouted kind.

I had to chop my tofu to help the crumbling because it was the extra firm, sprouted kind.

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A purrfect post derby meal!

A purrfect post derby meal!

Vegan Derby Cat Party?

Published October 15, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Hello dear readers!

As some of you may already know, I’ve joined a recreational roller derby league recently. This happened to overlap with Vegan MoFo last month, and it really brought my attention to the fact that what I’m reading, as well as wanting to write in my free time, has sort of shifted. I started this blog three and a half years ago, as a new vegan, in a new city, and [temporarily] out of work. Shortly after that, I moved back to south Florida, started working again, and got into a gloriously huge kitchen where I could be found almost constantly for the following two years.

Somewhere in that time Thomas and I decided that we were going to move to Seattle, and I also decided to take our sporadic rink sessions up a notch so I could maybe get into derby whenever we did. So I started watching youtube videos to teach myself crossovers, and basically worked on that up until the time we moved last year.

I had been waiting until I got health insurance to try out for PFM, but we did go out and check out the local rinks here. By sheer bad luck, I ended up getting hit very hard by a seemingly drunk, and reckless skater. After not successfully convincing Thomas that it was probably just dislocated and that I could watch a youtube video to fix it myself, he drove me to the ER. It turned out that I had a fractured epicondyle on my left humerus. I was offered a benefits eligible position the following week. Good news, but bittersweet!

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It was only about 2 months ago that I felt secure enough to get back on skates (with an elbow pad!). After a month of hitting the rink, I tried out, and passed the basic skills class to skate with PFM. This month I was added to the core team. So I’m skating 4 days a week currently. Sundays & Thursdays with PFM, Mondays at the rink, or at One World Derby’s class, and Tuesdays at adult night (the scene of my injury!).  Since I’ve become so used to them now anyway, I’ve decided to do all my rink skating with elbow pads and wrist guards. Those are two areas that I’ve injured unnecessarily over the years with simple falls that pads could’ve easily been prevented.

In other news…

It’s Thomas & I’s 3 year anniversary today! :D

And I’m also off to sign the lease for our new apartment in Capitol Hill! So we’ll be busy doing moving stuff for the next 2 weeks too. But I’ll still be updating with more vegan stuff, derby stuff, and kitties, so stay tuned!

Ganon wants a helmet too. He's jealous because Midna's on the new logo.

Ganon wants a helmet too. He’s jealous because Midna’s on the new logo.

VeganDerbyCatParty_Logo

Curried Black Bean & Kabocha Squash Soup

Published October 4, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party

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Thomas finally came down with the cold his body had been fighting today, and needed some culinary medicine. I decided that black beans and the kabocha squash sitting on my counter would be a great base, and I threw in a package of sprouted tofu because he loves tofu the most of any human I know! I also love to give my crazy Seattle bicyclist super protein packed meals whenever I can.

Curried Black Bean & Kabocha Soup

olive oil, for misting pot

1 medium onion, finely chopped
1 green pepper, finely chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 kabocha squash, scrubbed, mostly peeled and cubed small

7 c. filtered water
3-4 bouillon cubes
2 cans black beans, drained & rinsed well
1 package extra firm tofu, cubed small

2-3 tbsp. curry powder
1+ tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. cumin
+/- 2 tsp. salt
pinch of all spice
a few grinds of black pepper
cayenne pepper to taste, optional

Directions:

1. Mist a large pot with olive oil and set to low/medium heat. Add onions and cover. Keep chopping pepper, garlic, squash, stirring them in as you go, replacing cover after each, about 10 minutes.

2. Add water, bouillon, black beans, tofu, and spices. Raise heat to high, and bring to a boil.

3. Drop heat, cover, and simmer 30 minutes. Stir and taste for seasoning. Simmer partially covered for 15 more minutes.

You’re done. Yum!

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Vegan MoFo 2013:14 Seattle Week of Food

Published September 30, 2013 by Vegan Derby Cat Party
From the Queen Anne lookout point.

From the Queen Anne lookout point.

My parents were here this last week, and boy did we eat! We had a fantastic time, and the days just flew by. So even though I was hoping to beat my number of MoFo posts from last year, I’m not the least bit sorry. Also, congratulations to Sara, who won the Barnana giveaway! I hope you enjoy your snacks, Sara!

And now as I squeeze in my last MoFo post, with less than 2 hours to spare, I’m going to take you on a crash course of Seattle vegan food! Here we go…

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We started off their trip with a drive up to Greenlake to pick up Thomas, and headed straight to our fave place for Mexican, El Chupacabra, located in Phinney Ridge. This is the perfect place to take anyone who loves Mexican food (and even those who don’t!). They can make just about anything on the menu vegan, and everything is marked clearly. They have Gardein chicken & steak, as well as Morningstar meat for vegetarians, and plenty of other choices for omni diners. This is my taco salad w/o cheese, and with vegan steak. Delicious!

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My mom has just been getting into good beer, and was dying to check out a brewery for dinner, so naturally we took her to Elysian in Capitol Hill. We were still a bit full from lunch, so I just helped Thomas eat his VEGAN BURGER $11 - Field Roast vegan patty charbroiled on toasted ciabatta with sauteed peppers & onions, tomato jam and organic bibb lettuce. I had been there a couple of times before, but never to eat, and was surprised to see that they had a few awesome sounding choices that were clearly marked vegan. This sandwich was just as good as it sounds. Tomato jam? YES. My parents LOVED this place.

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Tuesday was my dad’s birthday, and my day off, so we went down to stroll by the waterside and to check out Pike Place Market. This is how they found out about the lie that is Seattle weather. This was supposed to be a “really crappy day”.

After a brisk start through Pioneer Square, the clouds cleared, the sun came out, and so did my umbrella. (Though the atypical storm we had the last couple of days sort of made up for it, I guess!)

Mom & I in Pioneer Square

Mom & I in Pioneer Square

We ended up in Ye Olde Curiosity Shop, where we were fascinated by their resident mummies… (for more weird attractions in Seattle, click here)

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And where I stumbled onto this antique Vampire Killer Kit (Eep!) containing a bible, a crucifix, holy water, a stake and a mallet. (Why does everyone want to kill us?!)

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After all this strolling it was snack time, so we headed to Pike Place Bar & Grill. I got the hummus and veggies with pita.

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We had drinks at the hotel, and then headed down to West Seattle’s Elliot Bay Brewing Company for dinner where my mom got the flight of beer she’d been after. After having some excellent bourbon with my pops earlier, I opted to try the root beer that they have on draft, which was terrific. They have vegetarian items clearly marked, and I got the Quinoa Garbanzo Salad $8.95 sans cheese. Mine was pretty good, except I thought the house made pickles they served along side were a bit too acidic. Thomas had the Pan Seared Tofu sandwich (not pictured), which sounded vegan except for the side of lemon mint aioli. (PS-Menu says all breads are buttered except the spent grain buns!) My parents really like this place too.

Sorry for the lighting on this one!

Sorry for the lighting on this one!

I got out of work at noon on Wednesday, so I was able to meet up with my parents for lunch. I took Britt’s recommendation for an omni/veggie sandwich shop, the Honey Hole in Cap Hill. We had passed it many times, but never checked it out. They veganized the Bellisimo $8 for me by holding the cheese and subbing Vegenaise for the red pepper mayo.  Smoked Tomato Field Roast, roma tomatoes, sauteed onions, banana peppers, fresh basil, vegenaise, and a splash of red wine vinegar on a demi baugette. OH MY YUM. I will definitely be back here so Thomas can check it out.

Mighty-Os from another day

Mighty-Os from another day

I thought they might enjoy a trip to Mighty-O Donuts in Wallingford after this, so we headed north. They must’ve had a busy day, because they were pretty low on donuts when we got there, but luckily, you can’t go wrong with Mighty-O. We got some apple spice mini donuts, a chocolate glazed, french toast and lemon poppy seed. So good. My dad said if he lived here, he’d be there all the time.

After a drive out to Golden Gardens Park to watch the sailboats, we drove over to pick up Thomas, and stopped in at Chuck’s Hop Shop in Greenwood for happy hour with their incredible selection of beer. (No pictures, sorry!)

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We tried to find a place in the International District for dinner, but my mom didn’t have the recommendations list on her, and we were too late, so we headed back to my mom’s new favorite place: Elysian. I had this FANTASTIC dish, TOFU SALAD $13 - Sweet chili sauce marinated tofu slices, baked on banana leaf and served over rice vermicelli, shredded Savoy cabbage and fresh grape tomatoes; with pickled daikon and carrot ribbons and Thai basil-lemongrass vinaigrette. Garnished with hoisin sauce, fried shallots, crushed peanuts and lime wedges. That’s 2 for 2 Elysian. AND they have some of the best tasting pumpkin beers out right now? Yeah, this might be one of my new faves too. Everyone loved their beer and food all over again.

Mom & Dad :)

Mom & Dad :)

For dinner Thursday, we went to a chinese restaurant in the International District recommended by a member of their hotel’s staff. It was Zagat rated and had a Seattle’s Best sticker on the door from a few years ago. Unfortunately it also had a bad smell in the foyer, and was a  HORRIBLE experience. They barely had any veggie choices at all, if you can believe it. (Even the tofu dishes weren’t vegetarian! WHAT?) We got 3 plates of nearly identical Budda’s Delight variants that were ugly as sin, and sadly, completely foul. Basically, we couldn’t get out of there fast enough. Then we got to chatting in the car about restaurant choices…

Ironically, my parents had been eating vegetarian since they watched Forks over Knives up until recently. (My mom’s not a tremendous meat eater and has been on and off vegetarian her whole adult life.) Somehow on Monday at Chupa, Thomas & I got the impression that my father didn’t want to go to any vegan places, so we’d been trying really hard to find other options than the ones we knew. Apparently they’d pretty much planned on eating vegan during their trip here with us! This made the rest of their stay a lot easier, and we got to laugh off the disgusting meal. After this there were no more dining mishaps, and we even went out for ice cream to celebrate to put that horrendous meal behind us!

Ice cream makes everything better.

Ice cream makes everything better.

I could’ve sworn I took a picture of my ice cream, but I guess I didn’t so the pic above is from the beginning of the summer, on a hot day at Blue Bird Creamery, which is where we went. That’s me holding a split scoop sugar cone of their two vegan flavors, Coconut Milk Chocolate Chip & Horchata. The horchata is to-die-for, and was a favorite at our table.

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Friday night we went to one of faves, Georgetown Liquor Company. Their motto is: STRONG ENOUGH FOR A CARNIVORE, MADE FOR A HERBIVORE! It’s a vegetarian bar that can make almost everything vegan. Not only do they have killer food and craft beer, they also have art, pinball and old school video game setups. I got a few rounds of NES Tetris in after I finished up my cider and this FRAC $9.77 : Lentil-sage Field Roast, Apricot Chutney, (W/O Primrose brie), fresh arugula and roma tomatoes toasted on ciabatta.

Large Southwestern

Large Southwestern

By Saturday I was really craving pizza, so we headed to Pizza Pi, an all vegan pizzeria located in the vegan strip of the University District. We usually don’t even look at a menu, we often just order what they’ve got on special, but this day, we all took our time making our selections. Ours was divine; the Southwestern has chipotle ranch sauce, chicken, green peppers, grilled onions, and bacon. So, so good. My parents go the ever-so-green St. Patrick’s Revenge, which has spinach and artichoke sauce, green peppers, broccoli, spinach, fresh basil, and they added chicken to it.

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We totally pigged out and ended up going back to the hotel to drink, hangout and watch bad tv & movies. We had a GREAT night, and Thomas and my dad made a run for some late night munchies including a Taco Bell fresco bean burrito for me. ;)

All Hail Kale with grilled tempeh.

All Hail Kale with grilled tempeh.

Sunday was their last day, and we started out with a flat tire that needed to be plugged. Luckily they got us in right away, and Thomas remembered that the Lake Union Veggie Grill was right around the corner, so we had a feast at this all vegan chain. I ordered the All Hail Kale salad (above) that is delicious on its own, and really needs no dressing. I’ll give you the quick run down below.

VG Rollers for the app. Two of them were picked up, and then replace for the picture taking! Hahah.

VG Rollers for the app. Two of them were picked up, and then replace for the picture taking! Hahah.

The Buffalo Bomber with chili.

The Buffalo Bomber with chili.

The Savory Kale Caeser with dressing on the side!

The Savory Kale Caeser with dressing on the side!

The Baja Wrap with Chili.

The Baja Wrap with Chili.

They really LOVED Veggie Grill too. They’re hoping that they get down to Florida one day, but I told them if they just move here, they can have it whenever they want!

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We did a little bit of bowling at the Garage, quickly checked out an apartment (Thomas & I found a place, and are moving at the end of October!) and then headed to Capitol Cider for our last happy hour of the trip.

This was actually from Thomas' birthday dinner, but they're the exact same no matter what Chupa you get them at!

This was actually from Thomas’ birthday dinner, but they’re the exact same no matter what Chupa you get them at!

My dad wanted to make sure he got one more meal in at El Chupacabra before he left, so we hit the Alki Beach location where I got the veggie tacos with black refried beans instead of pintos (no cheese). He was crazy about their chips & salsa, and happy with their selection of sauces. He said they were some of the best tacos he ever ate, which is a huge compliment from my father!

It was SO WONDERFUL to have my parents here. I hadn’t seen them for 6 months! Which is the longest I had ever gone without seeing them. We’ll be hitting South Florida in December though, so we don’t plan on letting it go that long again.

I hope you all had a great MoFo! Thanks for reading, and welcome to all the new followers!!!

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