Sunday, July 10, 2022

Turning Nothing into Something


I had half an onion and a red pepper that needed to be used, so I decided to roast them along with some garlic and half a can of white beans I've had in my freezer for a looooooong time.  I also had a handful of raw cashews so I threw all of this in a blender with some nooch, salt and pepper. 

Tossed with some noodles. I needed to make some kind of homemade, thoughtful food. I'm struggling with cooking anything after work. It's been so hot and by the time I get home I feel dead. So, I'm trying to be kind to myself and be okay with having bean quesadillas or random cheap frozen pizzas from Winco. Life is about balance, so I try to have homemade food on the weekend, even if it is simple.

Like the batch of lentil soup I make to have for breakfast and to take for lunch. This always tastes so, so good on Saturday morning. Not just taste-wise, but it's like my body is just so happy. I think it's less about nutrients and maybe more about feeling some self love. Homemade food is better for the soul I think. It's just an added bonus that it's also healthier for the body.

I haven't forgotten about my commitment to myself to get some help, firstly with therapy. It isn't in the old budget yet, I'm still struggling to play catch up but I have been struggling with some very bad dark thoughts and anxiety. I saw a poster in the back offering some kind of therapy for employees, but it seemed to be work related like maybe if your coworkers are driving you crazy or something. So, I asked the HR person about it, and she is checking on this and other resources for me. That's definitely a big step for me, but I have to try something. 

I'll be back next weekend, I hope everyone has a good week!

Saturday, July 9, 2022

Brave Robot + CoolHaus Vegan Ice Cream Sandwiches


It's been in the high nineties for awhile, and now we're hitting one hundred plus here in SLC. I hate it so, s much. Yesterday after work I decided to treat myself to whatever ice cold dessert that was on sale and sounded good. These were on sale and cheaper than any other vegan frozen treat. I've been uninterested in trying Brave Robot ice cream, because it's always really expensive, and also they use vegan whey and it seems unnecessary and weirds me out. Plus, I think vegan ice cream has always been pretty good, even way back in the day so again, unnecessary.But since I am a gal on a budget I try what the sales are. 

 The ice cream is pretty creamy, but no creamier than any other vegan ice cream I've tried. The cookies are nice and chocolate-y, but the mint ice cream is really, really lacking in flavor. It's like essence of mint. I like really strong minty things. I give them a six out of ten. I definitely wouldn't go out of my way to buy these again, but if on sale I would. 

Kiki is still Betty's biggest stalker. She's gotten a bit better, and a bit less angry but she still chases Betty any chance she can get. Here, she's trying to stalk Betty out of the box, when she doesn't even like boxes to begin with.

Sunday, July 3, 2022

What I Ate and Will Eat


My first smoothie in well over a year! I still make a juice almost every day, but smoothies haven't been my thing. But something about the heat in the morning has changed that. I made this with some mango, an avocado, strawberries and pineapple. The avocado and mango made it really smooth and creamy. I'll definitely make this combo again. Summer is here, and we are starting the day out at eighty plus degrees and rising. Blech. 

After I cleaned and had my smoothie, I threw these potatoes in the oven for breakfast after yoga. I really wanted ketchup but only had veganaise. Still very delicious.

 Awhile ago I bought these instant noodles with curry flavor. The brand has a sesame flavor which I've had and are vegan, so I assumed these were too. But of course not. The noodles are vegan, the seasoning packet has milk. So, last night I used the noodles cold sesame noodles and added baked tofu, cucumber and radish. This was so easy, but it felt like I made myself something fancier. 
Bread, strawberries, watermelon, green grapes, green onion, tortillas, tofurky slices, chocolate covered quinoa, Bitchen sauce, avocado,chocolate, baby cucumbers,garlic hummus, peanut butter,Chao slices, tofu

 My haul for the week. Turns out Independence day weekend is a great weekend for cheap produce! Smith's has personal watermelons on sale for $.99 each! Green grapes and strawberries were also on a great sale!
The Quinoa crisps and bitchen sauce were on a woohoo last chance sale, so that helped a lot. I did regret buying two watermelons about halfway on my walk home. Although I'm happy they are only personal watermelons!
Today I'm going to prep my homemade frozen burritos for work next week. I have some rice cooling down, and I'm going to assemble and individually wrap them in foil so they're ready to go. I feel content and happy doing this little task. I've never really had a job where I get an actual calm lunch break. So thinking of stuff to eat has been fun. This weekend has been calming in that way. I've been puttering around doing little deep cleaning tasks and I find it soothing. And it's a good release of emotion. You can cry and scrub really hard and it's therapy and a Ms. Clean level scrub!

and creamy. I will defin

Saturday, July 2, 2022

Week Two Done and Dusted!

 I made it through week two! I was actually doing work too, not just training. I was entering order numbers with instructions into two or three different programs, all while using two monitors!! I can't believe these words are even coming from me! I'm sure next week they'll up the difficulty a bit, but I'm not as anxious as I was, because I never thought I would be able to figure out what I was doing last week, but I did. I really surprised myself to be honest. 

The biggest accomplishment for me is that I didn't give up before I even had a chance to fail. I've done that so many times in my life. I'm really grateful that everyone in the office is so nice, and I guess I feel safe. I've felt a lot of things at other jobs, safe isn't really a normal one for me. It feels nice. 

I'm still struggling with meals. Even though my job is only two and a half miles from where I live, I have to either walk or take two buses, so my commute is close to an hour. Isn't that dumb/ If I had a car it would be ten minutes, fifteen tops. 

I made a cold potato salad with white beans for protein last week to take for lunches, but it is so freaking cold in that building I struggled with a cold meal. I need warm lunches! 

I didn't know these existed until I stumbled across them at Winco at a really great price. So far Amy's are the best and least soggy frozen burrito. 

I'm going to make my own frozen burritos this weekend. One of the many perks of an office job is a three day weekend! Even though I don't really feel the Independence vibe as a woman this year. So, my celebration will be trying to cook some delicious food for myself. 

The only bad thing about working Monday through Friday is that I don't see a trip to Trader Joe's in my future. Luckily Smith's/Kroger?Fred Meyer has gotten really vegan friendly over the years. 

I'll be back tomorrow with a little Smith's haul. Hopefully some deeper thoughts too. This week has been pretty great, but I did have someone hurt my feelings and the loneliness and needing a hug or something was strong for a few days. I'm still a little foggy today, but feeling better.

Thanks again for reading and all the kind words!

Sunday, June 26, 2022

Small Smith's Haul

Red lentils, baby red potatoes, vegan deli slices, salsa, green onion, English muffins, vegan yogurt, onions, Impossible sausage, vegan oyster sauce, strawberries, oranges, white beans, taco style beans, soy sauce, soymilk, hokkien noodles, hot and sour soup (both clearance)

 I went to Smith's this morning for a few groceries. Last week I was unprepared or I should say I just didn't prep anything because it was my first week and I was too nervous to think about food. I relied on microwave frozen burritos that I found on sale. Most of them tasted okay, but I don't like that soggy texture. Dare I say moist? (cringe) Since meal prepping never works for me, I'm going to make a few things for easy lunches, and I'm going to prep a few things for easier cooking. If I don't have to dice an onion and mince garlic I'm more likely to make an actual meal for dinner. I think making meals for myself, and having tastier food will help with my overall mood and mental state for my second week.

Betty's first cuddle!!

Out of all the girls, Floofy has been the most receptive to Betty, but this was a first! I'm not sure who was there first, but they were like this when I got home from the store! Progress happening all over here, as we regress as a country!

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Whew, My First Week!


Well, I made it thorough my first week at my new job! This sweet boy belongs to someone who I work with, and his name is Otis. He brought me a lot of comfort on a day when I really needed it! 

The good news is that everyone is really, really nice. I work in a department with three ladies who are really, really great. I lucked into a job with like minded people which I've really never had. It's a very nice and supportive work environment. 

This is my little office space and also the bad news. You guys, two monitors? I didn't know this was a thing people did. I guess other than gamers and super computer-y people. So, it's been overwhelming learning the programs and all the things. I mean, I haven't even come close to learning all the things. I have come home and cried every night of the week, but I haven't cried at work and I haven't given up. By nature I'm a crier, so it really isn't that big of a deal. I'd rather be crying because I'm learning something new from nice people than crying because I'm miserable around toxic people.

Someone who designs the tags and signs is really good at puns. Noah Zark, Kent Swim. There are a lot on the website too. 

I was hoping to share some food, but I have lived on sad, soggy ass microwave burritos for lunch, and various whatevers for dinner. Tomorrow I'm going to prep some things like onions and garlic and press some tofu so that it's easier to cook when I come home. Also, prep some lunches because frozen burritos aren't the best. 

This was the best of the bunch that I tried. The tortilla didn't really sog up, and the flavor was really, really good. But my problem with all of Amy's products is always the price. I found this somewhere on sale, so I would buy again if on sale. But it's pretty small so it's not worth the full price in my budget life opinion. 

Joan being the sleepiest girl!

Sunday, June 19, 2022

Monday Monday

 Today I've been reflecting on the past month and a half and how emotional and chaotic it's been. Somehow I've come out on the other end, and tomorrow I start my new job and hopefully a fresh start. 

I'm scared of how low I let myself go. And I'm scared of it happening again. That's why my mental health is my number one priority. As soon as I'm caught up and have a budget I will be seeking therapy. It feels so strange to say those two words. When you live paycheck to paycheck there's no budgeting, there's only hoping you'll get by another month. 

As I mentioned in previous posts I'm going to use this blog to hold myself accountable. I want to continue to move forward. That means mental health and also more education. Even though this job is customer service but different, it's still customer service which I couldn't be more sick of. So, I need to better myself in some way so I can do more. 

I'm hoping to blog maybe once during the week and then on weekends. Talking about the highs and lows and struggles and victories. And of course cats and vegan food. 

Thanks for being there and being supportive. Loneliness is something that weighs on you and gets worse over time. It's scary and incredibly sad. 

Wish me luck tomorrow!

Roxy wanted to remind everyone she's the cutest!

Sunday, June 12, 2022

The Highs and Lows

I saw the signs from last week this morning on my walk and had to take a picture. I wonder how many other people these signs have helped? I know it might sound silly, but when you have no cheerleaders in your life, random signs really make a difference. 

I have had some highs and lows over the past twenty four hours. I got the job I wanted yesterday. I went in telling myself this job is mine and I'm taking it! The interview must have gone as great as I felt it did because they offered me the job right away! I start next week. It's called Coller Industries, they make name tags and things like that. So, while it is customer service, it's mostly phone and online. And we mostly deal with businesses not so much the public at large. It's a small business, and I get the sense that it is a very nice and supportive work environment. It also pays what is a livable wage for me, maybe not for someone with more expenses, but for me I will be comfortable. I'm honestly most excited about working in a non toxic work environment. I've never had a job that is non toxic and pays me enough to live without having to dig in my couch for rent change. I'm so grateful. I decided to walk home from the interview because it wasn't super hot yet, and I had that excited energy that i needed to burn. The place is a little more than two miles from my apartment, and I think I had a goofy grin the whole time! It's been awhile since I've had a goofy grin so I'm not complaining!

Things are mostly looking up for me, my landlord however has decided not to work with me, and I have until Thursday to pay my rent. I was hoping she would work out some easier solution, but I've lived her a long time and she's never been reasonable. I can complain about her all I want, but ultimately I know how she is and what the hell did I expect? 

Berating myself doesn't help, and I can't let myself go backwards because that's what got me here. It can only get worse. I have to share my GoFundMe again. I have to do what I can to get out of this jam and I just don't know what else to do. 

It's like I'm almost there, there's just this huge hurdle in my way. I hope I can make it over the hurdle and become a success story. It can be a modest success story, but I need life to be more than it has. 

Thank you all for your support in whatever way. I appreciate the kind comments. I appreciate people believing in me. I'm trying to believe in myself, but it isn't something I've really ever done, and life has been so sad and chaotic it's not the easiest.

Wednesday, June 8, 2022

Moving Forward

 I wanted to share some good news. This past Sunday I was feeling very alone, scared and hopeless. I felt like nothing matters. later in the day, I got a GoFundMe donation, which made me work on telling myself that I matter to someone, someone who doesn't even know me. It was enough to pull me out of that dark place. The next morning I was coming home from my walk and there were two signs in someone's lawn. One said You Matter and the other said Don't Give Up. I started crying believe it or not. I got home and felt more motivated, chipper and energetic than I have in a very, very long time. I think for me the most important feeling that I felt was hope. No matter how down on my luck I've been in the past, I've always had a glimmer of hope for brighter days. That glimmer has been gone for so long and it was killing me. 

So, later that same day I scheduled an interview for a job that pays a livable wage for me. It also is still in the customer service realm, but it's not retail or restaurant or any of those things. The company makes name tags and things like that so I think it's more dealing with companies on the phone and on the webz. It's not too far from where I live so transportation is doable. I think this can be a job that doesn't make me dread life, and pays me enough to pay bills and have a bit extra. Where every cent I have to spend isn't so scary because I don't have enough cents to go around. 

I am going to give this interview my ALL. I still feel a slight glimmer of hope and I am protecting it. 

Moving forward, I hope to start Blogging again. But it isn't going to only be about food. Veganism is a huge part of my life and always will be so this will be food forward I guess? But I also want to talk about my struggles and what I am doing to help myself with those struggles. I want to do this for a couple of reasons. The first being to hold myself accountable. It case I hate this job, I still want to be working on myself. I want to get mental health help, and I want to get some further education so I can have more choices and get some financial stability in my life. It can be easy for me to get lost in my depression, and just kind of go to work and other than that not move forward. So I think this will help. I never want to be in a low place like this again. The second reason is because I know I'm not the only person who struggles financially, with mental health and maybe even health issues. So I'm hoping maybe I'll figure something out and be able to pass that along, or even if I do actually make myself aa success maybe that can give someone else hope. Loneliness and hopelessness are two of the worst and most dangerous ways to feel. 

I guess I have a third reason to share. I want anyone who has donated to see where their donation is going. Getting to keep my home and ensure a better future are number one to me right now. 

My interview is Friday morning, so wish me luck! I will definitely report back, and hopefully this is the first of many positive changes.

My GoFundMe is here if anyone is interested.

Saturday, June 4, 2022


 This is the newest member of the family! Her name is Betty, named after my favorite grandma. I don't know if you guys remember Bubba, the grumpy alley cat I adopted? Unfortunately in February he very suddenly got sick and passed. Betty is one of the many neighborhood homeless kitties I feed, and she was very small and skinny. She also has very short hair so I worried for her in the winter. I worry for all of them, but Betty was very friendly, and would sit on the rail of the balcony looking longingly in my window. 

Toy Box Nappin!

Most of the girls have accepted her, or just choose to ignore her. Joan sometimes gets weird, but like with Bubba, Kiki has all the problems. But where Bubba was happy avoiding kiki or running away, Betty is feisty and chases and punches back. Luckily it's not serious fighting. Betty has the sweetest little personality and I'm so glad she's safe. 

I want to thank everyone for even checking for my post, and thanks to anyone who donated to my GoFundMe. The support means more than anything. When I first had my falling out with my family, I thought not having any family wouldn't be a big deal since I wasn't close to them in the first place. In Seattle where I had more friends it was a bit easier. But moving to Utah has been very isolating for me. I don't love it or even like it here, and everything has just been one struggle after one struggle and feeling so bitterly alone has taken a toll.  

But I'm looking towards the future that I if I work hard might be bright and pull me out of this darkness I've been in for years if I'm really honest.