The no-new-grocery challenge

Budget- and mental health-wise, I hope the days are behind me of eating chips and leftover s’mores ingredients from an old camping trip for dinner.

But I’m still a writer trying to make rent in Seattle, where the cost of living and taxes are high (I love you so much Seattle, but you hurt me sometimes).

I got paid on Friday, but after going over my budget, I realized that I’d still have near-nothing left by the time my checks for rent, my CSA and a health insurance thing clear.

Not wanting to swim in more credit card debt (which is where I put my car repairs and birthday presents to loved ones), I challenged myself to not buy any more groceries until I get paid again June 13. More

Advertisements

Wut

Interrupting my hiatus of laziness for this important message.

I cannot wait.

Portland: still awesome

A few weeks ago, my boyfriend and I both had separate work things going on in Portland, so we got an extra field trip there.

Seattle’s my city, but Portland is pretty fabulous. It contains elements of my two favorite towns – Seattle and Olympia – in one. Some of the sleekness, bigger-city advantages and pop culture influence of Seattle, with more of the hominess and hippie-ness of Oly.

I continued to find fabulous plant-based food there. Probably my favorite thing about Portland. We herbies are truly at home there.

Take a look at some highlights:

Not pictured is the wonderful beer I had at Burnside Brewing Company. Plant-based grub AND excellent beer make Portland heaven.

The nooch gospel

My boyfriend, Mike, is a fairly picky eater.

Since going full-time veggie, he stopped wanting to eat the meals I make, which made me sad because I love to share my cooking. He’s also sad that I no longer make him beef stew or turkey chili (though I did teach him how to make his own turkey chili, so there’s that).

He’s a guy who honestly doesn’t see the point in eating something without meat and/or cheese.

One thing we do share is a love of salad. Sometimes we hit up a salad bar together at Ballard Market in his hood or Metropolitan Market in my hood. Since I’ve been overloaded on CSA goods, we just hit up the salad bar for toppings I don’t have (cheese and ham in his case) and mix them in with my copious quantities of greens.

Anyway. Outside salad, we have little in common anymore when it comes to food.

But last week, my friends, Mikey discovered nooch. More

Portland!

After some tough weeks at work for the both of us, my boyfriend and I went to Portland for the weekend.

My main experience with Portland is my mom taking my brother and me to the Clackamas Mall (quite outside of Portland) for sales tax-free back-to-school shopping. Of course I’ve been to Portland proper, the metropolitan neighbor to the south, but I hadn’t explored it on my own.

Seattle is an easy city in which to be vegan, but in Portland they totally cater to you. I had a waiter volunteer to check on the veganness of a salad, went to places with special vegan menus and you can just say “make it vegan, please” and they know what to do (too many people don’t know what that means, so I always have to specify no mayo/sour cream/cheese/aioli, etc.). Portland is particularly vegan-savvy.

Now eating out with the man friend means seeking out omni restaurants that have something I can eat. Homeboy doesn’t quite get that it’s possible to have a meal without meat.

But it was so easy!

Oh and we drank lots of craft beer. So happy beer is vegan.

Not pictured: a grilled PB and J from the famous Bunk Sandwiches. Yeah I’m gonna make those at home now.

Recommended brewery: Pints.

Maybe next time I’ll go to Portland with girlfriends who will eat at the vegan joints with me.

Breakfast: Still on the wagon!

Just chillin.

Just chillin.

Pictured is the tofu scramble I made Sunday night and brought to work for morning breakfast burrito assembly. I’ve been keeping it in the break room fridge.

Breakfast is still not a habit for me. While making my grocery shopping list, I had to remind myself that I needed a breakfast idea for the week and opened Isa Does It to the breakfast section. Since I loved the Happy Herbivore tofu scramble I made earlier in the month, I wanted to try Isa’s Mediterranean scramble. (I subbed in black beans for kalamatas, which I know isn’t Mediterranean, but olives are one of the few things I just can’t do.)

I brought the container and a new package of whole wheat tortillas to work. While assembling burritos in the break room yesterday morning, a co-worker observed me and said, “Now that’s a breakfast!”

I’m quite sure he didn’t know it was tofu when he added, “You’ve got the perfect protein, there.”

“Yeah,” I agreed, knowing he and I were talking about two different things.

Breakfast is making me so much less cranky in the mornings. It’s pretty great.

Next idea: tofu scramble freezer burritos.

Breakfast!

I dig a good weekend brunch, which I seek out once every couple weeks.

Breakfast on a weekday, however? I want to spend whatever 10 minutes it takes to prepare and eat breakfast SLEEPING.

Sleep in warm bed > everything

Sometimes I swipe a Clif Bar or two from the boyfriend. Sometimes I manage to make overnight oats to bring to work. Maybe oatmeal.

But the only thing I really bother with ingesting in the morning is coffee. With the combination of jitters and an empty stomach, lunch can’t come soon enough. Even when I do bring a small breakfast to work, I metabolize it so quickly that I’m still starving for lunch, anyway. More

Previous Older Entries