Monday, May 25, 2009

tasty muffins

last week i was flipping thru eat, drink and be vegan and i came across a recipe for zucchini spelt muffins that i thought would be great to make for our staff meeting at work tonight since last months meeting had a huge amount of cheesy pastries and other non-vegan things and me and the other vegan had nothing (fortunately since i go home for 2 hours before the meeting i'd had a snack but she'd been working with kids right til 6 and only had some vegemite on rice cakes to eat). these muffins sounded perfect since the other vegan is also wheat-free. when we got our first delivery of fruit and veg from aussie farmers direct (which by the way seems great so far) it included a zucchini so i had to make them. they're pretty amazing! sweet, very moist and tasty. i was a little disappointed that the one time i actually made something for our monthly meeting everything on the table was actually vegan and gluten free for the first time ever (2 large fruit and veggie platters with 2 vegan dips and 2 different types of very good organic corn chips). everybody loved the muffins though-- even the other gluten free (but not vegan) person LOVED them even though she doesn't like zucchini (you can't taste it in there anyway).
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Sunday, May 24, 2009


after some REALLY COLD nites (and THICK fog in the morning) and mildly warm days we had a nice sunny t-shirt & flip-flops day yesterday and a nite so mild it was like summer (i think that's why the dog didn't jump into our bed until 10am when we started talking-- usually she's up at the first bit of light on the weekends). i wish i'd kept the doors and windows open all nite. maybe tonite (it's only supposed to go to 15C so it'd be nice to keep the fresh air coming thru). i don't know what that black rainfall line is doing in the graph above. we definately didn't have any rain at any point in the past couple days.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

getting closer

up until a couple days ago swine flu was just a worldwide problem that was just out there. now australia has started getting its first cases. the majority of them are in melbourne with a few confirmed case children attending a local school that several of our families from work have older children at. the problem went from being a issue that was just sort of out there to being right in our neighbourhood. as of yesterday afternoon the health authorities are thinking about closing other schools and child care places in the area. i'm assuming they'll make a decision later in the weekend depending on how many new confirmed cases come up and how people have contracted it. so i may have a few days off because of this whole thing. the past 2 days at work we've been careful in asking families how they're all doing (even if it's not swine flu there's other flu bugs, gastro and croup going around). apparently 1 family brought their child in on thursday knowing she wasn't well (i had the day off). staff ended up calling parents to pick her up in early in the afternoon. by the next morning her doctor had confirmed she has croup. because her parents didn't keep her home and KNEW she wasn't well it's now very likely she has given croup to her friends (fortunately with croup its very unlikely for an adult to get it so its not as annoying for the staff as last year when parents sent their children in with the flu and staff were dropping like flies making everything even more difficult). i would have thought with the whole swine flu thing being in the media so much it would make parents more careful about sending children into kinder/childcare/school when they're not feeling well knowing that they will be spreading germs to everyone they're in close contact with.
(the piggy above is "baby" the 400+ pound pig that was one of 2 pigs that lived at the outdoor education camp we worked at in california)

Monday, May 18, 2009

eggplant parma

i bought an eggplant the other day with plans to use it for dinner tonite. i wasn't sure what i wanted to do with it but i knew we were gonna have something eggplant-y. i ended up just typing in "eggplant vegan" into google this evening and it came up with a recipe i've probably got bookmarked somewhere from fat free vegan kitchen (and she based hers on another vegan food blogger's recipe). we actually had all the ingredients (i used ground almonds instead of vegan parmesan) so that became dinner. it was soooooo good (no photos but there's some really nice photos on fat free vegan kitchen.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

lizards and snakes and crocs (oh my)

my favourite visitor to kinder is wild action. they bring in australian animals for the kids (and staff) to see and touch. mostly there's different kinds of lizards, frogs and a couple snakes (which are all really cool). there's also a wallaby (poor little joey got rejected from its mothers pouch-- she was pretty big but would normally still be living in a pouch so she was being hand raised).
this is oli the olive python (she weighs somewhere between 10-15kg):
jack the salt water croc (i'm not sure what his story is but "gucci" the croc we saw the next day was rescued from a croc farm):

29kg of "baby" salt water croc
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Thursday, May 07, 2009

it's vegan!

i found this at the indian supermarket near my house:vegan jelly. and it comes in LOTS of flavours. i grabbed the mango one and this strawberry one. when i got home i remembered i don't even really like jelly that much but i was just so excited that there was vegan jelly so close to our house that i forgot that we rarely eat it (i have ordered it a few times from the cruelty free shop and i'm pretty sure the radical grocery carries it too but it's a different brand and they don't have nearly as many flavours). the mango one is pretty good so we may start having jelly more often (maybe make some jelly shots?).

siamese banana

its a banana built for sharing! it tasted pretty good too.
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Friday, May 01, 2009

the same but different

the weather in melbourne is very similar to the weather in vancouver right now (although they'll probably see more rain than us):

(click to see a larger, more readable image)
only difference is that while we are gonna be getting shorter amounts of daylight and colder days/nights, vancouver will be getting closer and closer to summer with nice warm days and mild nights and it'll still be light until well after 9pm (i think the sun sets at almost 9:30 around the longest day of the year there and it's still light for ages after the sun sets behind the mountains). meanwhile, in melbourne i'll have to use my bike lights to get home on cloudy afternoons and i'll be layering up in at least 3 layers (just for indoors-- add at least 2 more for outside). we need to plan our annual winter holiday soon to some warm place (i have yet to go an entire winter in melbourne without at least a week away to a warmer climate, even if its only as far as sydney where i can still wear a singlet or at least a t-shirt most days in winter).
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