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Travel Hacks For Vegans Who Love Food

Hi, I’m Joi and I’m a vegan that is often speeding down the runway… unless I’m in homebody mode (which is often). That’s me. A girl of extremes. Jet-setting or relishing Hermitsville. I’m sort of wallowing in Hermitsville as we speak (I haven’t traveled in a month!), trying to be healthy because I’ll soon be eating my way through NYC and San Francisco, but getting back to the point of this post, traveling vegans need to do a fair amount of thinking ahead if you absolutely love food and want to do it right (spoiler alert: I don’t always do it right). By “doing it right,” I mean not only stave off hunger, but indulge in mind-blowing options that you’re not going to get at home. Without further ado, my best tips for travel, along with some food porn from recent travels, because what’s a food-focused post without food porn?! First rule of Vegan Traveling: Be Prepared! I like to pretend that I’m always the savvy vegan traveler. The girl with a snazzy picnic basket full of …

Vegan (& Engaged) At Disneyworld?!

Confession: I’m a bit of a Disneyworld nerd. Like many American kids, I grew up going there with my family almost every summer and the nostalgia is strong. But now I have even more reason for all the feels to be stronger. On my recent trip with my family to celebrate my parents’ 50th wedding anniversary, Danny asked me to marry him. Literally everyone I know was like, “the best part about you getting engaged is that it happened at Disneyworld,” and by best they mean, no doubt, weirdest because I guess I don’t fit the “type” you’d expect this to happen to. I mean, I’m not exactly all about that “waiting for my Prince Charming” BS. This is fucking-A true. I’m not even the “engaged,” type. But come on, this is the “happiest place on earth,” isn’t it? I like being happy! I spent too many years being unhappy. Possibly even a decade of intermittent unhappiness. But that’s a story for another time. I won’t deny that there’s this sort of creative/magical feeling inherent …

Food Can Be The Best Therapy

I’m going to come clean and admit that this has been a terrible month for me. Anything good that happened is negligible, a blurry photograph at a happy occasion that’s bound to happen again anyway. All good things were cancelled out by the death of my beloved 17 year old cat, Chick, 2 weeks ago on March 12. This was the last photo taken of him, on a Sunday night, while I was watching Homeland, and I was blissfully unaware that Lymphoma was speedily destroying him. Six days after this photo was taken, I took him to the vet because he hadn’t been himself all week, hiding, barely eating and having difficulty breathing. It was a Saturday. I dropped him off for X-rays and the vet called me later with the grim diagnosis. Of course I was prepared to hand over whatever money it took to heal him. I’ve maxed out my credit cards before to bring him back to health. Only… only I was told there was nothing that could be done except to …

Vegan Vacay: Costa Rican Yoga Retreat

It’s been a while, hasn’t it? On one hand, I’m mad at myself for not attempting an early January resolution post. But it’s not like I even had a breather at that point to pen a list of annual desires. My trip to Costa Rica last month was the perfect post-holidays reset that I needed. For Christmas and New Years, I was in New York visiting family. Then I came back to New Orleans for 10 days and then off to San Jose, with a four hour ride to Uvita, Costa Rica for 7 Days in Paradise… a yoga retreat headed up by my longtime friend and yogini extraordinaire, Melody. A vegan yoga retreat has been on my bucket list for years for so many reasons, but the timing never really worked out right for the ones that I really wanted to attend. How it all came about: last May I was in the midst of a huge vacation-planning promotion at work. The weeks leading up to it were kind of stressful, but in a …

Fall Fasting & Other Fun Stuff

It’s a gloomy Monday morning and there’s nothing I’d rather be doing than sitting out on my screened-in porch, enjoying the chilly breeze with a hot cup of coffee. My job is remote and although I have a (messy) office in the house, I typically do most of my work out here with a view of the canals behind my house. The truth is, I set up a bunch of fall goals that I just haven’t been keeping (refer to last post that was around 6 weeks ago). I’m not going to dwell on it here, but I know I said I was going to blog more often and it’s disappointing (to me) that I haven’t been keeping it up. Maybe if I would keep to the “shorter workouts” promise, that would free up some time? I should be able to bang it out in an hour or less, but it’s rare that I’m at the gym less than 90 minutes. Hell, I feel if I’m driving 1/2 hour to and from, I want my …

Summer 2017, The Official Farewell

It’s safe to say goodbye now, right? I grew up on Long Island and “back to school” was always the day after Labor Day. I used to have mixed feelings. After all, who can resist the allure of a new Trapper Keeper and fall clothes that would be too hot to wear for a month? But I definitely loved summer. A mere two months of freedom, but wasn’t it endless once?  Beach days with my grandparents at Zach’s Bay, Disney vacations, huge Sunday family picnics at Eisenhower Park, Friday night baseball games, pool days in my backyard, parades, ice cream truck jingles, cupping lightening bugs in my hands and admiring the glow before releasing them… it’s a sunny, sandy, starry humid blur but probably familiar to anyone growing up on Long Island in the 70s/80s. In New Orleans, while locals enjoy having a lot less tourists taking up all the dining reservations, a lot of us either leave the city or count down the days until Labor Day. And here we are. Happy Labor Day, …

Hurricane Season (Wake Me When It’s Halloween)

Time for the obligatory, August sucks, bring on fall post. Two days left in this tiresome month and they are full of storm. So it goes. This city is in my blood and I’ll take it with the storms and flooding the same way I’ll take it with the second lines, beads and bourbon. Three weeks ago I was storm-stranded in my car. Luckily I had pulled onto high ground, and after almost three hours of waiting it out to no avail, I had to wade through thigh-deep water to get to safety. What kept going through my head as I walked through the filthy water while garbage cans floated past me? This is practice for the zombie apocalypse (I think about the zombie apocalypse way too often). Spoiler alter: I made it OK and along the way, enjoyed the local attitude, ie, the folks partying away at the gas station and flooded bars in the neighborhood. Today is August 29 – fall is still about a month away. I’m rained in due to the …