Hi friends! I’ve been eating all things warm and cozy – basically anything that tastes like fall. With Thanksgiving around the corner, I wanted to share a recipe that would make a great addition to your table. Full of sweet potatoes, carrots, and pumpkin, you’ll most likely have all the ingredients readily available. Coconut milk makes it creamy and a dash of cinnamon gives it the warmth you may be looking for. I hope you’ll give it a try!
Before Willow arrived, I shared a post on what’s in our diaper bag. And I’ll be honest – A LOT has changed since then. I was carrying way too much. I also realized that the diaper bag I originally purchased was just no the one for me. It was a little too bulky. It also didn’t feel like “me” and I really didn’t want to lose that. If I am going to be carrying around this bag 24/7, I want it to be something I’m excited to carry!
Because honestly – bags that are marketed as diaper bags are nice, but not necessary. A big bag is all you need! Does it have pockets and compartments? Yes? It’ll probably work just fine! They also make awesome organizers for these things now, which can turn any bag into a diaper bag. I actually did buy this one, but ended up not even using it. It added more weight than anything else. The bag I ended up buying is not only my style and chic, it is light-weight, durable, and has awesome compartments! You can find the bag I use here and take a look. It has an outside pocket, pockets inside, and a zipper space in between both sides of the purse – I use one side for my items, the middle zippered compartment for clothes/cloths, and the other side for diapering needs. It both short and long shoulder-strap options (though I prefer the short shoulder one).
Everyone is different, but this is the bag that works for us. If you like actual diaper bags, that works, too. They just didn’t work for me! But anyways, onto what is inside the bag. It’s a bit minimal, but that is how I like it. I never need more than this.
Hi friends! Feels good to write a post here and there while still soaking up these first few weeks of motherhood.
As discussed in Willow’s birth story, a lot of the things that I feared the most ended up going so smoothly. Postpartum care also falls under this, because it really wasn’t as scary as I had always heard. Physically, I was fortunate to not have major tearing or any other issues, so it was pretty straightforward care. But aside from physical care, it is extremely important to care for your mental and emotional state. This was the hard part for me, but I’ll save that for another post. For now, I wanted to share some of the ways that I was able to stay comfortable and get through those first few crazy weeks. When it feels overwhelming, just remember that it is temporary. I had to tell myself this quite a few times. So if that is how you feel, the good news is, the weeks fly by.
Onto what worked for me :)
Quick post today – nothing fancy. Willow is sleeping next to me and I am really enjoying the calm. It took almost 4 hours to put her to sleep last night (but thankfully she did sleep through for almost 7 hours!) So I had some time this morning to eat something more than just a banana with peanut butter. I’ve been struggling with breakfast ideas while being home, to be honest. I’m getting pretty bored of english muffins/toast but haven’t been in an oatmeal or smoothie mood either (my two other go-tos).
So instead of oatmeal for some warmth, I gave this sweet potato bowl a go. It’s fast and easy to make and packed with fiber. So before Will wakes up, I wanted to share it with you.
It took me a long while to get into vegan cheese. I have mentioned it on here in the past, but when I first went vegan, I just couldn’t find a substitute I liked. I think it had to do with my tastebuds adjusting, because once they did, I started to enjoy vegan cheese blends and products more and more. And to be honest, I feel like there are way more options now then when I first started eating vegan. Actually, I even hated nutritional yeast at first (hated it) and now I can’t get enough. It’s crazy how your tastebuds will adjust over time. So basically, if you aren’t a fan of vegan cheese or think you are, keep trying! And most importantly, try a variety of brands because no two cheese substitutes are the same – trust me.
I’m so excited to have teamed up with the Follow Your Heart brand on this post, because they are by far my favorite for cheesy products – from slices to blocks to dressings. They just nail the taste and consistency. The cheese products melt beautifully – whether you are making a grilled cheese, pizza, or even adding to a soup.
I can’t believe it’s been over a month with Willow. She’s an actual angel, in case you were wondering. Ha! We’re already finding a pretty good groove (for now, anyways!) I’ve been able to get in the kitchen more to bake and make dinner for Joe, at least. It’s been so nice being able to do that… makes me feel awesome and you know, well-fed. I’ve definitely been more hungry as a breastfeeding mama, but continue to lose the baby weight. I ended up gaining 33 lbs this pregnancy and have already lost 20+ of it. Happy to be feeling myself – happiness all around, really. There are definitely days where I feel off (and irritated) – especially when she’s fussy (like yesterday) but today seems to be off to a good start. A vegetable soup is on the stove and I have a butternut squash in the oven. Small victories.
But anyways, here’s what I’ve been eating lately.
And as always, follow along on Instagram for more plant-based food inspiration. That’s where you’ll find me these days as I continue to soak up all the newborn moments. xx
As promised in my first minimalist hospital bag post, I’m here to share what I actually used in my bag. Apparently, there is a big difference in what you pack and what you really use. And I thought I packed minimally!
This is my own experience, so it may be much different for you. But I did just want to update and share – maybe it will help you decide what to keep or nix when the time comes for you. I know that if we do have a second baby, I definitely will be packing much lighter.
Two weeks into motherhood and I couldn’t stay out of the kitchen. I was inspired to make this recipe by Sarah’s Vegan Kitchen. Are you a fan of her YouTube channel? I love her videos and personality… and she is always cooking up something awesome. Like vegan crunch wraps. I can’t remember the last time I had a crunch wrap supreme from Taco Bell… maybe 8th grade? After seeing her video, I couldn’t get them out of my head and had to go and make up my own version. She uses beefless crumbles and potatoes for her filling, but mine is a bit different. I hope you like this alternative.
Also, I know I said I’d be taking a break (and I have been) but I’m happy to post at least once a week. When Willow is down for a nap, I honestly cannot sleep. Plus, she has been pretty good sleeping through the night, so I don’t feel the need to nap during the day. Focusing on the blog and getting in the kitchen definitely makes me feel myself and adds some normalcy to life (especially in the very beginning when everything was new!) If you are on Instagram and follow me, you’ll notice that I am doing my best to keep up there, too.
But okay, onto the recipe. Who doesn’t love Taco Bell when it is cruelty-free?!
I can’t tell you how happy I am to have gone through my very first pregnancy plant-based. Knowing that my Willow was literally powered by plants made me so happy. I felt great during my pregnancy for the most part (which you can read more details about in my first, second, and third trimester posts). Of course there were the typical aches and pains, but I always felt very healthy with no crazy issues. I gained exactly what I needed to gain and had nothing but good reports from my doctor with each visit. I’m very grateful to have been so lucky – and I do feel that eating vegan/plant-based contributed to much of this.
So many people – friends, family, and strangers – have been curious about my pregnancy and ask questions concerning my diet. Some people were skeptical and would make some unnecessary comments (to those people, I would kindly reply that I feel amazing and my doctor says I am doing great) but most were genuinely impressed. I’ve also connected with a lot of you on Instagram who were also going through a vegan or plant-based pregnancy, or were maybe interested in transitioning. I received so many questions through IG messages/chat and trust me, I would happily reply because I love talking about it!
At any rate, I am totally rambling, but the point is… I know a lot of people have questions and concerns or maybe just need some meal inspiration. I documented a lot of my pregnancy on here, so I want to compile all my posts in one spot. I hope that you find what you are looking for below – or comment and ask. We’re all different and may have different needs, but this is my personal experience and I hope that it inspires any else who may have an interest in a similar journey.
Hi loves! I started compiling these meals at the tail-end of my pregnancy, but there are also some post-baby meals in here. I’m so fortunate to have amazing family and friends to bring over lots of meals while we got through the first week with a newborn. Thank God, right? Because I am STARVING. Breastfeeding is no joke. Lots of plant-based/vegan food inspiration below the cut!