Sunday, December 14, 2008

Needs in Life

Maria Rose wrote in her interesting blog, "Little Things are Big"
what she really needs in life. Her needs listed in the December 12 post are:

1. Food, water shelter
2. Healthy relationships
3. Creative output

Nothing else! How about that! Now I would totally agree with that - but I think meaningful work would have to be added to my list. However, you might say that meaningful work and creative output are the same thing. In that case, creative output would absolutely suffice!

All of this simplifying and organizing I am doing lately would also fall into the creative output category. It's not exactly fun work, (and not exactly creative) but will be so satisfying and such a joy when it it done.

Of course, under the food, water and shelter category, "healthy" could also be included as a good descriptor.

Then again, I would want to add art, books, poetry and beautiful visual aesthetics. Oh dear, my needs are not that simple.

Enjoy the day dear friends, and some simple, delicious vegan food!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Animals

I haven't written for quite a while. For that I apologize. However, I was just reading Brandi's blog ( and her latest blog post is a comment about her emotional reaction about killing animals. This posting prompts me to mention something I do not comment on much (if at all so far) in my blog.

At first I became a vegetarian for health reasons. After a while something changed within me. As time progressed, I began to feel a tenderness toward the animals that I never had before. I realized that all animals have emotions (just like we realize our pets do). In my reading I learned that many are also very smart (such as pigs, especially) and we can connect with all animals just as we do with people. (I heard that this inner transformation often happens to others who become vegetarian too.) Now I am a vegan and I feel at peace with the idea that I have made that choice.

Being a vegan is like being on a journey. Sometimes it is not easy, depending upon the situation, and I am not "perfect." However, my heart tells me to keep on the road to being a vegan, and to become more committed every day.

Talk to you soon, dear friends.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Libraries and Web 2.0

I know this is basically a vegan blog, but I had to share this with my vegan librarian friends:

Thursday, August 28, 2008

How to Eat Flax Seeds and Soy Milk When You Don't Really Like Them

Here's the thing: Most people eat because things taste good. But what about this: What about eating because it's good for your health? Take flax seeds for example. They're not really that good! But boy, are they good for you!

Here's a way to eat crushed flax seeds: Buy a container of already crushed flax seeds and store them in the freezer. When you pour your cereal in the morning, put a tablespoon of the flax seed on one tiny corner of the bowl. Now when you eat your cereal, eat the flax seeds with a bit of cereal first. Then you can eat the rest of your cereal, without the seed. After doing this for a while, you will begin to like flax seeds better.

For soy milk, I prefer the unsweetened. Start by only moistening your cereal in the morning. Don't pour a lot on at first. Later, as you get accustomed to the taste, pour more soymilk on. When I first started doing this I didn't like the flavor compared to milk. Now I can drink the remaining soy milk left in the bowl. My next challenge, down the road, will be to drink a whole carton of soy milk. I know a colleague who took little boxes with her in hotels when at library conferences. I've got to get to that point, because it is on-the-go protein.

We are all on a road -- best wishes to you who are on that vegan road. Until next time, Bonnie

Monday, August 25, 2008

How to Be a Non-Cook and Still be Vegan

Everyone I meet asks me about what I cook. I know -- I'm bad! I actually never cook! Yet I'm a vegan!

For my special diet, all you need is a bunch of frozen dinners by Amy's Kitchen (delicious, vegan ones) and some canned soup by Amy's Kitchen (some hearty ones with beans and rice in them). Canned beans are good to have handy too. With a variety, you can make a bean salad. Just combine some with celery and some tasty balsamic vinegar and oila! Bush's Vegetarian Beans are good too. My mom, a vegetarian, loves these just at room temperature. No cooking needed! A salad completes all of your tasty vegan meals.

I know there are a lot of vegan blogs that share recipes, but you don't even have to be a cook to be a vegan!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Waiting on the World to Change

Guess what! The video I selected (below) was not the one that I really wanted to choose (that I felt was "moving", with quotes, etc.) but, nevertheless, the "Waiting for the World to Change" one is still very well done! Thank you, PeepChick101!

The one I really wanted to select, "Famous Vegetarians" begins with a black screen and a quotation. Whatever happened to that video? Does anyone know?

At least I know I now can put a video on my blog. I just learned that in a library workshop by Stephanie Zimmerman!

Take care, my vegan friends!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Famous Vegetarians

This is a very moving video - great music too!

Vietamese Food and Poetry

Hello friends! So much going on in my life right now. I let a bit of time go by since my last post.

Yesterday we went to a Vietnamese restaurant -- love Vietnamese food! It is probably the least fattening of all the types of Asian food in restaurants. For example, Chinese food is usually fattening because of all the oil they use in stir frying. All of that fried food is so yucky!

At the Vietnamese restaurant I had a dish with tofu and noodles and spices such as hot pepper, mint, lemon grass, ginger and garlic. How heavenly it was! There were plenty of salad items on the plate too, with a tasty sweet vinegar dressing on the side. The portion was large enough that I could save part of it to take along to the hotel I stayed at in Williamsport that evening.

Lately I have been reading some poetry books, to help get me through this transition period in my life. I especially love books by Roger Housden. Here is a link to his books on Amazon: He writes a series that starts "ten poems." Right now I am reading "Risking Everything: 110 Poems of Love and Revelation" includes some wonderfully passionate and moving poems. I would recommend any of Roger Housden's books on poetry. Some, the 10 poems series, has more of his commentary on the poems, and others such as "Risking Everything" has less commentary and more poems. Both types of books are superb!

Let me know how your vegan path is going for you. Being vegan is a very happy feeling!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Easy Diet Dinners

Here is my new idea for a great diet dinner. Buy cans of Amy's Kitchen soups or veggie chili and heat them up. Serve this with a salad with only balsamic vinegar - no oil.

Here is the very best vinegar, in my opinion - Oliver's 25-year barrel-aged balsamic vinegar, purchased at Williams Sonoma. All you need is some salt and pepper. The vinegar is very sweet and mellow.

Amy's Kitchen soups often have only 1.5 grams of fat per serving, or something like that. I usually eat the whole can rather than one-half a can, so I am eating two servings.

Now you can afford to have some wine with that and maybe a slice of bread toasted in the panini baker. If one could stay on that diet for a while, you will lose weight.

My problem is that I get side-tracked with too much hummus sometimes!

Oh well, I hope you are staying on the vegan path, my friends! Take care, Bonnie

Wednesday, July 30, 2008


I am reading a new book: "When Organizing Isn't Enough: Shed Your Stuff, Change Your Life" by Julie Morgenstern. Here is the Amazon link:
I have been drawn to read books about simplifying lately, but this one is so much better than the usual how-to-organize book. To begin with, Morgenstern asks you to think about the last major change in your life and name, in a word or two, what was the "theme" of that period of your life. Now name your new "theme." For example, perhaps your last theme was "ambition" and now it is "free to be me." Now, get rid of everything that does not align itself to your new theme. What an interesting concept! I am going to give it a try!

Reading is such a joy, because it takes you down a road of change. I love change!

Keep enjoying the vegan life, dear friends!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Flax Seed and B12

One thing I learned at Summerfest (from Jeff Novick) is that most people do not get enough omega 3 in their diet and that the ratio between omega 3 and omega 6 oils is way out of wack. The remedy for this for vegans is to eat flax seed. Lately I purchased some crushed flax seed and I put a tablespoon on my cereal each morning. At first I didn't like it all that well, but now, one week later, I am okay with eating it.

This is an exciting time for doing what is best for the body and making the best decisions. I am also taking a B12 each day, dissolving it under the tongue. Those two things - B12 and flax seeds, are important for vegans to take. B12 is only found in meat, since today's soil is so depleted. Without B12 one could develop nerve problems.

I hope you are all enjoying the beautiful summer and the yummy summer berries and healthy fresh air. How lovely it is to be outdoors, enjoying the beauty of the sky this time of year.

Until next time, let me know if you are a new vegan and we can encourage each other. Bonnie

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Wild Ginger

I was able to go to Wild Ginger, the restaurant in Soho, NY, and the meal was heavenly. I enjoyed the ever so delicious Malaysian Curry Stew and a tasty fresh salad with yummy ginger dressing. A glass of Chardonnay completed the divine meal. My daughter loved it too!

I was just on the Pritikin Longevity Center website that has a perspective page that advocates a diet of only 10 percent oil. I am aiming for that but for me, it isn't that easy eliminating too much olive oil, as I loved going to Carrabbas
and eating a lot of the seasoned olive oil and bread. However, I am forcing myself to change. At Carrabbas the other day I requested a margurita pizza without the cheese and I only put a little of the herbs from the olive oil on the pizza. That is quite a change! It's not so bad having a pizza without cheese, especially at Carrabbas. Not as good - but worth it, and you can get used to anything. Besides the cheese gives the stomach a bad feeling afterward, and without it, you feel free and light! Love that!

Pritikin also had an article on whole grains and how that can make your stomach flatter than by eating white breads. Oh, that has to be the next step for me! Eliminate all white flour and only use whole grains. My downfall is pretzels, but I will look for the whole grain ones from now on.

Being vegan is a great road to be on. Until next time, Bonnie

Saturday, July 19, 2008

New York Visit

I am soon going to New York to visit my mother-in-law in Queens and we will be seeing a lot of our Chinese relatives (hubby is Chinese) and we will go out to a restaurant together. I am a bit apprehensive, because often when I go there is not much to eat. It's funny - you would think - that there would be a lot, but we often go to a Dim Sum restaurant, and all they serve, basically, is greasy meat dishes. There is one dish that has veggies, but sometimes there is a shrimp in the middle of it. Often my stomach hurts in New York, usually because of too much oil in the dishes. The wait staff are usually very ethnic, so you can't say to them "little or no oil."

Oh well, maybe I will put some oatmeal bars in my purse. It will be worth it to see the relatives.

Sometimes, on the way, we stop in Soho and we eat at a terrific, quaint and inexpensive restaurant, Wild Ginger. In the windows, they have dried weeds and rocks encased in glass and it is really artistic. You could read about the restaurant in the 2008 "The Vegan Guide to New York City," written by Rynn Berry and Chris Abreu-Suzuki. I recently met Rynn Berry at the Vegetarian Summerfest in Johnstown, PA. My sister and I sat with him for lunch. It's really neat how, at the summerfest, people just sit with "strangers" and get to know them. Loved that! We sat with several authors at the event.

Well, got to go. Here is a link to The Vegan Guide to New York City:

Until next time, Bonnie

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Reading "No Bull: The Mad Cowboy Targets America's Worst Enemy: Our Diet"

I am currently reading the book "No Bull: The Mad Cowboy Targets America's Worst Enemy: Our Diet." Here is the link: This book is very interesting. This previous cattle rancher is now a vegan and he speaks persuasively and passionately - it could move anyone to action!

One great idea that I should take to heart is this: he advocates eating not 5-6, but 15 or 20, fresh fruits and veggies every day. In his menu section, how he accomplishes this is usually to pile fruit on cereal in the morning (lots of fruit!), having a huge salad with perhaps a sandwich on whole grain bread for lunch and having a terrific veggie soup for dinner and fruit for dessert. I like his menu selections in the book. He has suggestions for two weeks worth and they sound easy and tasty!

He also advocates eating fresh fruit and veggies for about 50% of the diet. I've got to learn that! I have linked the title of this entry to an address, in case you are interested in checking out the book.

Lately I traveled to the Pittsburgh area, and I purchased great vegan food at Maggie's Merchantile. I got such yummy food there both ways, traveling back and forth on the PA Turnpike. Yea for Maggie's! Such nice people working there too! Here is a link to the vegan deli:

Life is good! It is such a joy to be committed to this lifestyle! I put two bumper stickers on my refrigerator: "Please be Kind to Animals: Don't Eat Them" and "Veg For Life: For Health, For the Animals, For the Earth." The first bumper sticker is from the Vegetarian Resource Group and the second is from

Until next time my dear friends, Bonnie

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Sister Becoming Vegan and BYOV

I am so excited about this! My sister, Carol, has decided to become a vegan! She said that she didn't realize what an impact Vegetarian Summerfest had upon her until she made this decision a few days afterward.

Her reading, too, impacted her decision. I gave her a lot of books to read on the subject, and she bought some at the Summerfest too. Some books, about slaughterhouses, especially moved her to take action. In addition, she wanted to change for health reasons, as we see how our Mom is doing in her later years.

One of these days I will write down the titles of all of the books, but only after they are returned to me, so I have record of them. Many are quite remarkable.

Since becoming vegan, one colleague Carol works with said, "Carol, you are getting skinny." (By the way, have you read "Skinny Bitch"?) Carol has lost 5 pounds in a short amount of time. I forgot to say that she is eating not only vegan, but low fat vegan - my goal as well. She doesn't want to eat many processed foods, so she is cooking veggies like crazy and she also bought a juicer!

Victoria Moran (see my other post for info about her) says that she always makes herself veggie juice every morning that includes apples and kale, as two of the ingredients. Kale makes me so happy, because I know when I eat it I am doing something wonderful for my body.

One day I began eating kale off a veggie tray. It was supposed to be a garnish just to be pretty under other salads or fruit or something. But I found kale to be okay just eaten raw, and it is great torn up with some delicious balsamic vinegar (the best kind from Williams Sonoma), salt and pepper on it, and nothing else. You can make a big salad - in a company sized salad bowl - and just eat that and feel really good about it. Does that sound weird? Another thing that Victoria said was that sometimes people say to her "are you going to eat all of that salad?" And she says "yes, and I may also eat another one after this one!" She has a good attitude!

My sister, Carol, has the right idea, though, trying to not eat processed foods. I, on the other hand, eat just about nothing but processed foods. I love beans, and they are readily available. Just open a can! Today I had Hormel Veggie Chili (one gram of fat) and Bush's Baked Beans (zero fat) and a veggie dog. Oh, I'm bad! It was good, though!

I will tell you one more funny thing -- my daughter, Holly, invited me to a July 4 cookout. She said it was BYOV -- do you know what that stands for? Bring your own veggie burger!

Until next time -- I hope to hear from you soon! Bonnie

Monday, June 30, 2008

ALA Book Cart Drill Team Championship

I enjoyed the book cart drill team championship at the
ALA convention. One group presented an adorable routine to the song "I want to be a librarian."
What a great song.

Here is a link to a you tube video interpretation to accompany the song. What fun!
I hope you enjoy it too.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Vegetarian Summerfest in Johnstown, PA

My sister, Carol, and I attended Vegetarian Summerfest in Johnstown PA this year. I had been wanting to go for many years, and this was my first experience with it. What a remarkable event it was! How wonderful it was to hear the superb speakers talk on a variety of topics. Many of the speakers are authors and they had fine credentials as well.

My most life changing experience at the summerfest was the informative and persuasive session given by Jeff Novick ( This dietitian advocates adding no extra oil to your diet, as all vegetables have some oil in them already. He also proved to the audience that olive oil was not as good for you as we all believe.

And to think that I always thought slathering on the olive oil was a good thing!

Anyway, because of the summerfest, I have chosen to eat not only vegan, but low fat vegan - not an easy task, to be sure, especially when on the road.

Another terrific program was given by Victoria Moran, who spoke on staying youthful. Here is her website: Her book is called "Younger by the Day," and she not only spoke eloquently about the topic, but she is a stunning example of a beautiful vegan. In fact, after seeing many of the people at the event, it keeps me on the path in even a more dedicated way.

I would love to hear from any of you who are transitioning to becoming a vegan. Take care, Bonnie

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Ithaca trip

We enjoyed a lovely trip to Ithaca last weekend, including a trip (two days in a row!) to the fantastic Ithaca Farmer's Market. What a joy it was - so summery and relaxed! I love the organic vegetarian foods, (especially eating lunch), the impromptu music, the lake, the pottery and art, and the beautiful lotus pond. All the summery things to enjoy, in my opinion!

Ithaca is such a great place for vegetarians! I want to go back and back!

Until next time, Bonnie

Thursday, June 5, 2008

a meeting with nothing substantial to eat

I went to a meeting today, and for lunch they had a lot of wraps with meat and cheese, but for a vegan there was a banana, strawberries and a cabbage salad. They also had chips, which I did not take.

Then later, in the car, I was so hungry that I ate a sweet snack bar that had way too much sugar in it.

I really have to learn to pack my lunch, because it gets a little ridiculous when I go to meetings arranged by meat eaters.

Boo, hoo, I am feeling sorry for myself today.

So I made up for it by going to a Mexican restaurant this evening with my daughter in law and having a yummy bean burrito and a margarita!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

First day of the blog

Hi! I was a vegetarian for 8 years but now, for the last three months, I have decided to become a vegan. I don't know anyone my age who is a vegan, so I decided to create a blog for the purpose of encouraging other baby boomers to become a vegan or to relate to other older adults (kind of hate that term) who are already vegans.

Why become a vegan? Oh, there are so many reasons. Have you read the book "The China Study?" Or have you read the book "Diet for a New America?" The former will convince you to become a vegan for health reasons, and the latter will convince you to become a vegan for reasons of the cute little critters.

I love being a vegan! I am so excited about it!

However, sometimes it is a drag -- like when I was traveling the PA turnpike the other day and at two rest stops there is nothing for a vegan to eat except for a wilted salad! Sometimes in PA people don't know vegans exist -- but that is only my opinion! Of course it is my experience too.

Thank goodness for Taco Bell and Subway!

Well, enough for now. I am tired from a long trip doing a workshop on library programs in Clarion. Talk to you soon!

Best wishes to becoming a vegan! Let me know how it goes for you. Youngbon