My Vegan Journey

 

 fresh vegetable and tempeh stirfry

My Food Journey

 

I’m going to take some time to fill you in a little more on me and why I care enough to make this website. I quit eating red meat in 1995 and I started to become much more aware of animal rights, animal cruelty, my own health, etc. But, my journey to plant-based/vegan living really started in 1998. I am a tree-hugger and the more I learned about the impact of factory farms on the environment and the animals unfortunate enough to live on them, I realized by continuing to eat meat, I was supporting things with which I did not agree. I am a very passionate and compassionate person, have always loved animals, even bugs, and feel emotions, mine or others, very deeply. After years of researching many different cultures, religions, lifestyles, and opinions, I felt; whatever you would like to call the Higher Power, would want me to do everything I could to lessen the suffering of animals and the destruction of the Earth. So, I stopped eating and wearing animals and made sure all of my household and beauty products were not tested on animals or made with animal by-products.

 

I moved to Oregon in 1999 and was suddenly exposed to so many new ingredients, cuisines and restaurants, (where I could eat) and that was a real turning point for me. I met so many other vegetarians and vegans and suddenly wasn’t the odd ball. At that point, I had the resources and knowledge to go vegan. Growing up in a small town in Alabama, it was not easy to be vegetarian or even explain the concept in 1998.

In October 2002, I got pregnant and moved back to Alabama. Thankfully I brought and shipped a ton of food back to get by until I tracked down somewhere to buy food, toiletries, and household products. Throughout my entire pregnancy I remained vegetarian and despite other people’s concerns, both my daughter and I were and are very healthy.


Fruits and berries fanned out in a circle

My daughter is still vegetarian, even though the choice is now hers. I did raise her vegetarian, just as my parents raised me as a meat eater, because they eat meat. However, when she became aware that what she was eating was different from those around her, which was a very young age, I explained the reasons we didn’t wear or eat animals. No, I didn’t traumatize her with documentaries, just facts about the environment, world hunger, animal suffering and how it was all pointless and we were helping and doing our part by not eating or wearing dead things. She became a much more vocal vegetarian than I wanted at some points! But, she is smart, loved, outspoken, healthy, not afraid to be who she is and beautiful beyond words and I couldn’t be more proud!


Shortly after moving home, I got divorced and became a single Mom working two jobs. I started doing research on meals that were vegetarian, then vegan and easy to make from scratch or as close as I could get in a pinch. I found shopping lists for meals I could prep in advance and cook quickly later. The food actually tasted good, even to a child, and the ingredients didn’t break the bank. I now have a teenager and everyday is a surprise. But, it’s one I wouldn’t trade for the world. So, as my life, her life and palette continue to change, you may as well join us.

The Internet has grown immensely since 1998 and the number of people eating some type of animal free diet has increased drastically. However, I still learn something new every day and want this site to grow along with everyone’s knowledge! Let’s get to know each other.

Love and Light,

Keli

4 thoughts on “My Vegan Journey”

    1. Hey Dan,
      Thank you very much for your comment 🙂 I hope you will come back and check out some recipes, they are super easy and yummy! Thank you for visiting!
      Keli

  1. Thanks for sharing your inspiring story. It’s not easy to become a vegetarian. At least not for me. I’m curious as there are many kinds of vegetarian. Do you eat any of the following? Eggs, yogurt, cheese, seafood, cow’s milk, ice-cream (made with cow’s milk)?

    1. Hey Yvonne,
      I actually have a page on here that talks about that, because there are so many different types of vegetarians & vegans & plant-based eaters. I wanted to say my site was for helping people transition to plant-based eating because often times when people hear vegan, they think of a very radical person that is going to lecture them about eating animals & killing the Earth. While, I have my personal reasons for being vegan, I do not feel it is my place to tell others what to do. However, true plant-based eaters only eat fresh foods, no processed foods. While I try to eat a low amount of them, I still eat processed foods. So, I had to say vegan. I am vegan, so I don’t eat or wear anything that comes from animals or is a byproduct of animals. No dairy, milk, eggs, honey, silk, leather, angora, gelatin, the list is extensive, lol. I also do not use bath & body products, cosmetics or household products that contain any animal ingredients or were ever tested on animals or have any ingredients that the company that made the final product had tested on animals in the process of making the final product. It used to be very hard to shop & more expensive, however with a higher demand for these products it is surprising how many companies have adopted these policies. My daughter is vegetarian. She does not wear anything made from animals- fur, leather, etc. but she eats cheese & ice cream & isn’t as careful with her beauty products. She makes sure they aren’t tested on animals, but not that they do not contain any animal by-products. But, she’s 13, coming up on 14 & I don’t want to pressure her to do anything. Well, this has been an extensive answer! Haha So, basically no, I do not eat any of those things. I love Ben & Jerry’s Non-Dairy Frozen Dessert and Daiya Vegan cheese if I just really crave something, but it’s not that big of a deal 🙂
      Keli

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