Posts Tagged ‘Vegan’

Regaining My Spirit…

…Today has marked the first day of valiant attempts at regaining my spirit. After nearly two weeks of not being able to hit the gym (a week in Malta + time in Scotland + holidays do well to sabotage my gym-going), I finally got in an hour of cardio followed by an hour and a half yoga class. It was invigorating, indeed, if not a bit ambitious. I can already feel the soreness plaguing my legs; it’s truly amazing how tight one’s hamstrings can get in two short weeks without proper exercise. I have effectively stretched them out but not without a bit of pain. I’m happy to say I’m back on track with my gym and eating habits just in time for the New Year!

After that super fun-filled gym session, Wen and I hit up Sherlock Holmes at the Empire Theatre in Leicester Square to further revive my spirit. I think Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would have been proud to see Guy Ritchie’s work on this film. Good movie, substantial plot and a hot cast — Robert Downey, Jr. + Jude Law + Rachel McAdams = a lot of gorgeousness on the screen at any given time. Now I’m back at home, marinating in bed with a much-needed cup of coffee in my hand to ward off evil spirits (aka caffeine headaches) watching Disney’s Sleeping Beauty. I just ran across this list ranking Disney movies from 48th up to 1st place and I was a bit surprised by the outcome… How can 101 Dalmatians or Pinocchio outrank the likes of Aladdin, Beauty and the Beast or the Lion King? Perhaps it’s a generational thing… in any case, I’m re-watching Sleeping Beauty (haven’t watched it in a good 15 years) to see what puts this film ahead of 38 other films in the ranking. I find that in re-watching some of these movies as an adult, I pick up on some adult humor/innuendos that I hadn’t noticed as a kid. (Note: Re-watch Disney’s Hercules… it’s much funnier as an adult!)

On the agenda for tomorrow — gymming (complete with Pilates sesh!) followed by a visit to Zara… there are loads of amazing sales this time of year and I plan to enjoy a few of them while I can! Also, on a different note, I have been revisiting the idea of veganism. I had attempted to go from vegetarian to vegan once upon a time but had a difficult time when I realized how difficult the process truly is (eggs and dairy are in everything). With a bit of a stronger spirit, I have been investigating the move once more… it’s definitely a possibility for 2010! Anyone interested in veganism, check out this great blog: FatFree Vegan Kitchen… great recipes! Mmm!

Lots of love,


‘Wicked’ & Wine!


Considering the fact that I have been diligently holed up for the past week, working voraciously on my presentations, papers, etc., I felt (semi)justified in going out a few evenings this week! After Wednesday’s Arsenal match, I needed another amazing event to top off Thursday night! I organized a trip to see ‘Wicked’ at the Apollo Victoria theatre (which is conveniently a stone’s throw away from the Victoria tube station) for my Social Policy & Development group. In total there were 16 of us and it was a blast! I happen to be a lover of musicals/plays/general live performances and Wicked definitely exceeded my expectations. The set, the lighting, the singing, the music — it was all amazing! Plus, because we were a large group of students, I managed to snag superb tickets for £17.50 per person (versus £45-£60 that they would normally be)!

Andy & I at the TheatreLadies
We all had such a blast, we’re hoping to plan Round 2 at the Gielgud Theatre in Soho to catch a showing of Avenue Q! If Wicked is playing at a theatre near you, I highly recommend it. It’s almost tied with the Lion King for amazingness!

Last night, after having too much fun on Wednesday and Thursday, my flatmate and I wanted to keep it low key with date three at Mildred’s in Soho. For the record: the risotto cake was out of this world! Whether you’re a veggie or a carnivore, it is definitely something that can be appreciated by all. After a few glasses of wine there, we met up with a group of folks at Gordon’s Wine Bar, apparently the oldest wine bar in London. Rudyard Kipling actually lived in the building back in the day! The place has a very cool vibe; it’s underground in what could best be described as a cave. It’s dimly lit, reasonably priced and a great place to mingle with a slew of different people! A must visit if you enjoy wine.

Gordon's Wine Bar

After three nights of fun, today is dedicated to finishing up my presentation for Monday and working on my paper for the coming week. Only a few more weeks of crazy intensity and then back to having a semi-normal schedule!

Hope everyone’s weekend is fantastic!

Signature Stamp - Shannon

Mmmm…Mildred’s <3.

As luck would have it, my blonde Californian flatmate happens to be a fellow vegetarian with a love for all things chickpea. The chances that we got placed into the same flat are probably relatively astronomical and very fortunate since I now have someone to share my soy and hummus-loving ways with. Yesterday night marked week number two of our newly-minted weekly ritual involving veggie love at Mildred’s in Soho. Mildred’s is all vegetarian (and mostly vegan) and has a pretty solid variety of vegetarian fare.

Mildred'sI had some of the best tostadas ever (aubergine + courgettes  + guac = heaven) and Lindsay’s chickpea, pumpkin & beetroot burger looked amazing! Plus, the side of sweet potato fries is intensely amazing if you love sweet potatoes. {Side note: For anyone that’s yet unaware, sweet potatoes are the most amazing food of life and, thus, my favorite food on the planet. Sweet potato pie, sweet potato latkes [for the Jew in me], sweet potato casserole… delish.}


Check out Mildred’s main courses here — even for the carnivores out there, you’d be surprised at how delicious vegetarian food can actually be when prepared properly! Can’t wait for next Wednesday!!

Does anyone know of any other London-based vegetarian spots worth hititng up?

Sending lots of veg love your way,

Signature Stamp - Shannon

Vegan Challenge!


I’ve been struggling with the idea of going all the way for a while now. I’ve been a happy vegetarian for about a year and a half, and I must say it was most definitely a perfect lifestyle decision for me (although sometimes I do drool when my girlfriends order sushi and my roll consists of carrots & cucumbers…). I’ve gotten to the point where I automatically scan the dinner menu for vegetarian options and never feel deprived when I see an exceptionally delicious looking carnivorous dinner that I, of course, can’t order. Now that it has become such a given in my life, I think that I’m ready for a real challenge: veganism.

Oohhh… no. I’m not talking about a full transition here. Rather a short-term challenge; a “cleanse” if you will. And it’ll be a good opportunity for me to see if it’s something I can truly stick with. Now, I realize many people (omnivores) tend to lump all the crazies that don’t eat meat into one big organic boat, but there is a pretty big difference between the life of a vegetarian and the life of the vegan: vegan’s are way crazier! Here’s a quick overview of how things work:



No meat — no beef, pork, poultry, fish, shellfish, etc.


No meat (like vegetarians) plus say goodbye to eggs,
dairy products, honey, leather & anything else an animal may have touched.


Veganism is considered the true & strictest form of vegetarianism. There are maybe — on the super high end — 1% of American citizens that enjoy (if that’s the right word?) the vegan lifestyle. I’m planning on being one of these such people. For 21- days. I am not the biggest consumer of eggs and I have always preferred soy milk to normal milk, but even then, this will definitely be a challenge. It proves to be most difficult when eating out. Most products have some eggs, milk, cheese, etc. incorporated into them. Vegetarian dishes ESPECIALLY typically have some cheese mixed in for flavor since many carnivores seem to think no meat = no flavor (which, by the way, is not the case!)

Oprah recently did a 21-day “cleanse” in which she practiced pure veganism. This website  has an overview of the challenge with daily podcasts (!) containing information on veganism, words of encouragement (because you KNOW you’ll need about five days in!), and recipes for vegetarians and vegans. The benefits of vegeterianism (including veganism) are astounding: think lower rates of heart disease, lower blood cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure, and lower rates of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and prostate and colon cancer. So who knows — you may want to actually stick with it for more than 21 days <3.

Check out for awesome veg recipes & a Vegetarian Starter Packet.

Alright — off to Mix to meet up with some friends (I’ll give you all a run-down tomorrow)! I’ll probably be starting this super fun (vegan diet) stuff next Monday.

Anyone down for the challenge



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