Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Back home!

This morning I had drip coffee, you know what that means....

I'm back in America!! I already Americanized my nails

Much to my surprise, last minute I made the stand by flight & I got to spend a good 13 hours in the very back of a plane in between 2 men. FYI sitting between 2 men on a flight is the worse because they always take over BOTH of the armrests. The feminist in me fought for my armrest long & hard the whole flight. Besides the bad seat, since I was standby I couldn't order a special vegan meal, & not expecting to get on the flight, the only thing I had eaten was a bowl of warm muesli that morning.

The flight was a vegans worse nightmare: creamy fettucini, a roast beef roll for a snack, & eggs w/ grey sausage. Ick! I had to go non vegan a bit & had a small croissant, green salad, pretzels, chardonnay, & coffee. I was starving when I got off the flight! Thankfully as soon as my mom picked me up from LAX she brought me to a vegan restaurant that I have been meaning to try- Veggie Grill. This place was reminiscent of Native Foods (my all time favorite). I had the Santa Fe Crispy Chickin' w/ crispy chillin' chickin', lettuce, tomato, red onion, avocado, & southwestern spiced vegan mayo on a bed of kale w/ a side of chili.

My mom had the VG- Cheeseburger done El Dorado style w/ jalapenos, caramelized onions, & ketchup w/ a side salad w/ miso dressing. I thought it tasted yummy, but my mom still thinks Native Foods is way better.

Later I drove back to the airport & picked James up from his flight & we came home to a nice homemade meal. Knowing the both of us too well my mom made James a big pasta w/ chicken while I had brown rice topped w/ broccoli cooked in garlic & truffle oil. Truffle oil is sooo good!

This morning I had copious amounts of the coffee shown in the first pic & made breakfast for the family. Cooking for everyone else made me not so hungry, so I waited until the fam (along w/ James & Dru) & I went to go see Eclipse to have my first feed. My friend Dru, the person who originally got me into veganism, has recently converted back to her vegan ways so I brought us some healthy snacks to the movies. Chili & lime cashews, dried apricots, & pepitas.

For lunch I made myself a simple wrap w/ a whole wheat tortilla filled w/ shredded soy cheese, guacamole, tomatoes, & arugula. Doused in tapatio.

Tonight both sets of my grandparents came over for dinner & we drank peach sangria...

& I enjoyed an arugula salad w/, sugar plum tomatoes, & garlic croutons....

hummus, grapes,pita chips and a cold pasta salad....

Yum! It's nice to be home & w/ the family. Hoping for nice weather tomorrow so I can enjoy the beach. Cheers for now.

Monday, June 28, 2010


My time in Aus is slowly coming to a close; today was a day of farewells w/ many of our friends leaving Sydney to go back to their respective homes. My day started out w/ a banana & a long black coffee. How hilarious is James' birthday card?

Afterwards we went to Bondi Junction where James went shopping w/ his birthday gift certificates & we spent time w/ our friends Brie & Drake who have been visiting from Brisbane & flew home today. Once again I made a visit to Sumo Salad and had a mix of the falafel couscous salad & chickpea pumpkin salad.

For some very odd reason, even though I don't like chocolate, I tried a dairy free dark chocolate covered orange-peel. Sometimes I will try something just because it is vegan, even if I wouldn't normally eat it. This sweet just reaffirmed my aversion to chocolate- I preferred the glazed orange to the chocolate covering, I know I'm odd what can I say.

For dinner we picked up Thai food & ate w/ James' family because they wanted to say goodbye to James before he left to America. Yes that's right he's coming to America. I am sooo excited : ) The only bummer though is that I procrastinated in buying my ticket home, so the soonest flight I could get out was on the 2nd. I'm trying to get on a standby flight tomorrow, but it's unlikely that I will be able to. Worst case scenario I'll just have to be in Aus for 3 days on my own while James is in California w/ my family. It will be way weird to Skype when he's there & I'm here.

Anyways, for dinner I ate a side salad of mixed greens w/ avocado, olives, capsicum (bell pepper), & tomatoes w/ balsamic vinaigrette and Tom Kha soup w/ vegetables, tofu, & white rice.

For dessert we had some delicious fruit: kiwi, melons, bananas, watermelon, oranges, & pears.

Once we finished dinner w/ the fam we then had to head to our friend Tom's house for another farewell dinner party for our Canadian friend James who is leaving to go on further travels. While I opted out of having a second dinner I could not resist the homemade hummus that Tom's mom made. There is nothing better than authentic hummus w/ warm pita bread.

and some more fruit salad.
The boys being boys. I love that my boyfriend is sporting a Kind Campaign shirt.

Wish me luck tomorrow trying to get on my standby flight, I'll need it!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

James' 21st Birthday!

Special K vanilla almond cereal w/ 1/2 sliced banana & soy milk. So good.

With a long black coffee from the Paddington Grind. Like my shoes? ; )

I grabbed a quick bite from the food court at the Westfield mall in Maroubra where we were busy buying some last minute things for James' birthday party. This yummy salad from Sumo Salad gave me the energy I needed to blow up all 150 balloons. Whew.

A hodge podge of sorts. Mixed greens w/ corn, tomato, carrots, chickpeas, avocado & pumpkin w/ balsamic vinaigrette, a bread roll, & a diet coke.

At James' party there was a ton of food. I only got a pic of some of the appetizers including brie & crackers, hummus, guacamole, quiche, & spanakopita. For dinner there were unpictured kebabs, sausages, & lots of salads.

For dessert there was the healthy option of a big fruit salad...

& James' amazing birthday cake that his aunty had made for him. This cake was insane! I love the surfer. It was made by Chris at Cake Occasions.

It was such an amazing night. James' sister & I made a slide show of photos and videos of James' throughout his life, and some of his friends and best mates (along with me) gave speeches.

A million drinking songs later this cute couple from the beginning of the night turned into....

girlfriend taking care of a very wasted boyfriend. Poor James was more trashed than he has ever been in his entire life. I guess that's what 21st birthday parties are for. Interesting fact: the dress I was wearing was James' moms from about 20 years ago.

After sleeping in super late at James' parents house, we made it back to Paddington where I grabbed a soy long black w/ honey from The Grind.

We lucked out & there were tons of leftovers from the party so lunch was as easy as warming up some roasted vegetables & adding the usual hummus & BBQ sauce.

Even though it was James' birthday I was spoiled & received a gift from friend and fellow blogger Winnecke. She works at a bakery, Sonoma, and after reading my blog and seeing how much I love grains she gifted me some of their muesli.

For dinner I had a bit of both the honey & breakfast spice and spelt maple & almond cooked w/ soy milk. I think I died and went to heaven this muesli was so delicious, it won't last long. Thanks Winnecke!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Feeling fruity

I've been a bit behind in blogging because quite frankly I've been busy living life (more like planning James's birthday). I'll let the photos do the talking.

Coffee as usual willing me to memorize flash cards

My beloved Starbucks in all sizes @ Darling Harbour

The Australian version of Starbucks; Gloria Jeans. Thank god for their 'American sizes'.

I tried overnight soaked oats in jar & even though I added less liquid this time they were still watery. It looks like pure PB in this pic. No complaints w/ that one.

1/2 cup oats, 3/4 cup soy milk, 1 tbs honey in a peanut butter jar.

Lately I've been feeling a bit fruit in the form of fruit salad...

and fermented grapes ; )

Go Australia! Sadly we're out of the World Cup now, the US is still going strong though.

Of course I've been eating salads too...
Mixed greens w/ tomato, peas, carrots, corn, chickpeas, cucumber, & tofu 2/ spicy tofu dressing.

Carrot & chickpea salad 2/ sultanas (raisins) & an almost barbequey sauce & a couple of chickpea falafels on the side.

The 24th was James' 21st birthday so I took him into the city to go to one of our favorite restaurants Zaafran. I had the mixed vegetables w/ spicy pumpkin sauce & James had the beef vindaloo.
Delicious, but sooooooo spicy even for me & I'm the queen of spicy food.

We also split the saffron rice...

and garlic naan.

Happy Birthday!!

That night we went to his parents house & had unpictured Chinese food. I did get a pic of the chocolate mouse cake.

Tomorrow is his big 21st bday party. We're expecting about 100 people, it should be lots of fun. Expect plenty of drunken photos!