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5 NON-TOXIC ways to scent your Home for the Holidays by Kris Gurksnis, VLCE

The smell of fresh-cut pine trees or cookies baking in the oven can invoke fond memories of the holidays, compelling us to light a candle, squirt a fragrance spray or use a plug-in to create a festive vibe.

Unfortunately, there is a hidden danger in air fresheners called Phthalates. Used in air fresheners to make scents linger longer, Phthalates are an endocrine disruptor linked to birth defects, breast cancer, asthma and reproductive issues. This toxic chemical has also been shown to have negative affects on our pets’ health. They are a hidden danger because there are no requirements to list them on product labels.

Instead, scent your home with holiday cheer by trying some of these wicked easy, natural, non-toxic, compassionate alternatives!

  1. NATURAL ROOM SPRAYS

Making a natural room spray is simple, fun and makes a great gift!

Check out my 3-minute, step-by-step video to learn how to do it: http://youtu.be/V9nUR0v5DJ0

  1. BRING THE OUTSIDE IN!

Collecting pinecones, sprigs and berries on a woodland wanderlust is a great way to get outside, connect with the earth and bring the “outside in.”

Fresh Sprigs

Gathering sprigs can be a magical experience – personally and aromatically! White pine is one of my favorites to gather due to its beauty and healing properties. The needles make a wonderful tea for colds or respiratory issues. Arrange sprigs in decorative centerpieces, wreaths or basket arrangements.

 fresh sprigs 1 

fresh sprigs 2 

Clove Oranges

Using a candy thermometer or pencil tip, poke holes in a ripe orange to create a design for your cloves. After the design is finished, insert the cloves in the holes. Arrange in a decorative basket by themselves or mixed with cinnamon pinecones. The juice from the orange infused with clove is the bees knees.

clove oranges

Cinnamon Pinecones

Gather 10-15 pinecones. Place on a cookie sheet bake at 175’ for an hour or until they open. Remove from the oven and let them cool. In a small spray bottle, mix 45 drops of cinnamon essential oil with distilled water and spray the pinecones. Place in a paper bag and allow them to marinate for a few days. When ready, place in a decorative bowl or basket. 

  1. HOLIDAY SIMMAH

This is a quick way permeate the scent of the holidays throughout the home. Have fun and “spice it up” with various spices.

Place 5 cinnamon sticks, a dash of cloves, 2 slices of orange and some star anise in a pan with approximately ½ cup of water. Let simmah for about an hour on the lowest setting. Enjoy!

 holiday simmah

  1. HOLIDAZED & DIFFUSED

There are many types of aromatherapy diffusers; two popular ones are ultrasonic and ceramic.   Ultrasonic aromatherapy diffusers break down the essential oil into micro particles, dispersing the scent into the air. Ceramic diffusers are heated by a tea light and are a less expensive option. Please keep in mind, animals are very sensitive to essential oils, so please check to see which ones are safe to use around your pet.

Here are some of my favorite holiday essential oil blends:

Sugar Cookie

½ tsp Vanilla Absolute

6 drops Cinnamon essential oil

2 drops Nutmeg essential oil

The Perfect Tree

7 drops Douglas Fir essential oil

4 drops Rosemary essential oil

3 drops Cypress essential oil

2 drops Nutmeg essential oil

Cold & Flu

4 drops Eucalyptus

3 drops Rosemary

2 drops Basil

2 drops Bergamot or Lavender

  1. ALWAYS KEEP ROSEMARY BY YOUR GARDEN GATE AND FRONT DOOR

[Read more…]

Holiday Survival Tips by Michael Suchman

The period of time between Halloween and New Years can be a culinary version of running the gauntlet, especially for anyone who is vegan. Between office parties, family gatherings and house parties, this becomes a season of eating. If you are lucky there will be vegan options for you at these gatherings, but more than likely, most, if not all the foods offered will be filled with animal products. However, all is not lost. With some careful planning, you can still attend these parties and not leave feeling hungry, frustrated at the lack of options or if you are like me, the dreaded hangry. Here are some quick tips to help get you safely through the holidays.

  1. If you are going to an office party, don’t be afraid to talk to the person organizing it. Explain that you are vegan and ask to make sure there are vegan options available. Most large companies have catered events and can make sure there will be food for you. In the case of going to a restaurant, check out the menu ahead of time and see what is available. You can also call the restaurant and speak to a manager before your arrive. Simply let the manager know you are vegan and ask what option the restaurant has that would work for you. With notice, most restaurants are happy to work with customers. Be prepared to make suggestions. If they say we have grilled vegetables, or even worse, say they have nothing, ask if they have beans, pasta without egg, etc. Odds are they have plenty to work with, but don’t think outside the printed menu.
  2. If going to a house party, bring along a vegan dish. Make plenty so that the other guests can try it and taste how great vegan food is. This way you will be assured to have something you will want to eat and you do a little vegan advocacy at the same time. Make sure whatever dish you bring is a winner. Now is not the time to try a new recipe. If the host is a good friend, talk to him or her ahead of time about what vegan options there will be. No host ever wants a guest to feel left out.
  3. For family gatherings, again, bring some food with you. Hopefully your family is supportive and will already have some vegan friendly menu items planned. Don’t be afraid to talk to the host about what he or she is serving.
  4. Eat a little something before you go to the party. By arriving somewhat full, you aren’t tempted to mindlessly snack during the party. When surrounded by people who are eating, there is a strong temptation to join in. And if the only vegan options are chips and such, you end up eating a lot of empty calories, which usually just makes you feel more hungry.
  5. Have some food ready to eat when you get home. After a night at a party where you didn’t get much to eat, arriving home hungry leads to late night eating. Uncontrolled late night snack can easily result in over eating. By having a light meal waiting for you, there is less risk of random bingeing.
  6. Ask questions of the hosts or servers if you don’t know what is in something. The safe default, unless you know everything is vegan, is that all dips contain some animal products. Find the veggie tray, but before using the dip, ask what is in it.
  7. When people ask why you aren’t eating or are eating so little, simply explain that you are vegan and there is little available that you choose to eat. If they say something like, “wow, that is really hard,” or, “that is so limiting,” take a minute to educate them on the bounty of foods available and that in this situation you are only limited because of what is being offered.

With just a little planning ahead you can make it through the holidays without any problems at all. At least not when it come to food. As for family, well, you are on your own.

michael suchman, vlceMichael Suchman, VLCE is a recovering lawyer. After practicing in the field of Corporate Litigation for 12 years, he was tired of representing corporations over the interests of individuals. Since stopping practicing, he has come to recognize that the law needs to work more on helping all individuals, regardless of species. Michael lives in New York City with his husband Ethan and their two vegan dogs: Riley and Charlie. When not running the show at Chelsea Foot and Ankle, Michael can be found either in the kitchen trying out new recipes, watching Dr. Who, or taking photos the old fashioned way, with an actual 35mm camera. You can check out his photography at michaelsuchman.com. He and Ethan are the founders of Vegan Mosand are proud to be Amicus Partners with Lambda Legal and Barnyard Benefactors for Our Hen House.

Holidays, Happiness, and Being Vegan by Victoria Moran

With December upon us, I’m in holiday mode. We did an all-out Thanksgiving, starting with my son-in-law, Nick, appearing in the Macy’s parade (he was a toy soldier), and having over for dinner a gentleman named Stan who is, well, let’s just say, closely acquainted with the Big Guy from the North Pole. We watchedMiracle on 34th Street (the 1947 black-and-white original, of course) and when Kris Kringle said, “Christmas isn’t just a day: it’s a state of mind,” Stan and I both responded with “Yes!” in a duet so synchronized you’d have thought it was rehearsed.

vegan holidays main street vegan

At this time of year, I automatically access a childlike sense of wonder. It’s interesting to me because I didn’t have a Norman Rockwell childhood, but Christmas was somehow exempt from the various dramas that went on the rest of the time. I’m so grateful for that, and I believe it’s why I can slip so easily into effortless happiness with the first Christmas tree stand that goes up on Broadway. Being vegan means that some of the seasonal foods I eat are different from those of Christmases long ago, but that’s just part of the celebration. These days, when I put up my manger scene and unwrap the cow and the sheep and the little goats after their year in tissue paper, I think of the farmed animal sanctuaries I’ve visited and support, and how positive it is that at least a few animals have been rescued and more can be spared. It will only take more chipping away of old ideas, old prejudices, and old fears.

My commitment for Holiday Season 2014 is to give it a priority. You never know how many Christmases a life is going to have and I don’t want to miss anything, even when I can’t see the bottom of the email in-box keeping on top of all that seems immensely important. Here’s my plan: William and I will start the month with a 3-day juice cleanse. That’s not much for veteran juicers but it’s a little gift to the digestive system, none the less.

On the 8th, a smart and funny friend, Cathryn Michon, will be in town with her new feature film, Muffin Top: A Love Story, about one woman’s relationship with her midsection. It’s not a Christmas thing like tinsel and candy canes, but it’s very Christmas-y to me to celebrate splendors, and knowing that someone in my world has written, starred in, and raised the money for a feature film is incredibly inspiring. It helps me remember that all things are possible and makes me grateful that Christmas comes just before New Year’s visioning and goal-setting and stretching for more and better.

On the 15th, I’ll be bursting with pride as I attend the holiday fundraising dinner for Urban Utopia Wildlife, the center my daughter and two of her wildlife-rehabber colleagues have established to tend to sick and injured wild mammals. My little girl, who always excelled at theater and writing and creative pursuits, has grown into a woman keeping track of 501(c)3 organizational stuff, as well as getting up in the night to feed to the last of the fall’s orphaned baby squirrels. Adair is the only vegan in this fledgling organization and she’s convinced the other decision-makers to keep this, their second fundraiser, vegan, as was their party last summer. It’s such a curious thing: we vegans are a minority. We can push our agenda on the people around us, but if the food is great and the conversation stimulating, it’s not pushing an agenda anymore, it’s broadening a horizon. [Read more…]

Easy Vegan Holiday Entertaining by Lynne Agnew

If you like hosting small get-togethers with friends but are hesitant to do so during the hectic holiday season, read on for some ideas and suggestions that everyone will enjoy.  Keeping it simple and fun will allow you and your guests plenty of time to relax, catch up, and have a really good time.

Beginnings

Everyone wants to escape from the daily grind.  Set the mood with candles, twinkle lights and great music playing in the background when your guests arrive. Have a variety of beverages on hand: wine, beer, non-alcoholic drinks, and sparkling water. To make it special, use festive, gem-toned glasses from a retail store such as Christmas Tree Shops. They are inexpensive and if they accidentally get broken, it’s no big deal!

vegan entertaining 1

Cheese and crackers are a party staple.  In the past, most vegan cheeses left much to be desired.  Times are changing and there are many new brands available that are rich, creamy and delicious.  I was recently introduced to Miyoko Schinner’s products.  She’s from California and has been at it a while, developing the most intriguing flavors like High Sierra Rustic Alpine, French Style Winter Truffle and Aged English Sharp Farmhouse.   They are fantastic and getting rave reviews!

vegan entertaining 2

Chips and guacamole are easy to prepare and a crowd favorite.  Sprinkle pomegranate seeds on top for a colorful touch.  A couple of great websites to learn more about these powerhouse fruits are californiaavocado.com and pomegranates.org.

vegan entertaining 3

The Main Event [Read more…]

Animals Are Our Friends: Farm Animal Sponsorship & Adoption by Carmella Lanni-Giardina, VLCE

“Animals are our friends” has been the moral of many instructive fables and childhood stories. The main characters, non-human animals, were endearing, and they’d become my friend, your friend, everyone’s friend. I couldn’t imagine anyone ever eating or harming them, because they were good animals who cared for others, did good deeds and taught valuable lessons. If they were in trouble, I would be sad, and vow to help them in any way I could.

I also grew up in an omnivorous home, eating animals at just about every meal. Never did we say we were eating animals. As a child, I would recap stories from my favorite books about amazing creatures. All the while, Grandma’s Chicken and String Beans were there on the plate, being devoured by ME. Even when visiting my great-uncle Tom’s backyard farm in South Carolina, I didn’t think twice about the animals that were on my plate versus those the pets running around his home, chickens and pigs among them,

Adopting veganism in my early 30s helped me to see that I had been contributing to the suffering of animals. Certainly, it wasn’t on purpose. It was that cognitive dissonance that didn’t make the connection between my non-human friends and WHO would be on my plate. Needless to say, I learned a new lesson: “Animals are our friends, not our food.” I vowed to help in any way I could.

Animal sponsorship programs, like Farm Sanctuary’s Adopt a Farm Animal Project, do just that. They tell real stories of individuals who are seen AND heard. These animals can touch your heart, make you laugh and cry and teach you something more than any storybook could. It doesn’t matter how near or far from you the animal you’re helping lives, you’ve given a gift to a special creature and her caretakers to make sure she and her loved ones have robust lives as intended.

This is why my husband and I sponsor animals as part of our donations to local shelters and sanctuaries. This year, after attending our second NY Country Hoe Down at Farm Sanctuary in Watkins Glen, NY, we “adopted” Fanny, a beautiful cow we’ve met on both visits!

Fanny

This is also the fourth year, we’ve adopted a turkey from Farm Sanctuary’s Adopt A Turkey Project: Cecilia, one of twenty-four babies Farm Sanctuary recently saved from factory farming.

cecilia

In helping these few individuals, we show our love and compassion for all. By sharing stories of Fanny, Cecilia, and others, we can hope to have an effect on others who want to make a change, big or small, for all animals, including us humans. [Read more…]

Vegan Thanksgiving, Simplified by Vicki Brett-Gach, VLCE

Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. For the last 20 years, in every year but two, my husband and I along with our two kids have been the hosts to family and friends from both sides, with 12 to 20 people joining us around the table.

We always serve loads of seasonal favorites, but I learned long ago that it’s most fun when we keep things pretty simple. Contrary to what you might think, planning ahead is the key to simplicity for me. A couple of weeks ahead of time, I actually develop a full menu, create grocery lists, and even decide which serving pieces to use – plus, I make notes about what can be prepped ahead, and when. That’s most critical of all. It may sound extreme, but it’s actually fun, and it’s my best secret for successfully neutralizing the stress that hosting a big holiday dinner can prompt.

My next rule is enlist plenty of help. Allow guests to bring a vegan dish if they offer to do so, because it makes the holiday more fun for everyone. And of course it relieves pressure from the host.

Finally, have fun at your own party. Even if you are the type that can’t relax until dinner is served, know that your guests do not care about (or expect) perfection, and neither should you. What matters only is that you’re with your favorite people. Each moment is a memory in the making.

If you serve non-vegans on the holiday, as I do, you already know that pleasing them can be a tricky mess. But really good (vegan) food speaks volumes and paves the way for peace across the aisle. So here are a few of the favorites that will be making an appearance on our holiday table.

Thanksgiving Dinner Menu 

cauliflower soup

Creamy Cauliflower and Carrot Soup

This recipe is always a hit. Sometimes guests help themselves to a cup of this satisfying soup before we ever sit down to dinner.

salad

Spinach and Kale Salad with Pecans, Dried Cherries, and Maple Citrus Dressing

I like to start with a bright green salad, using pecans or walnuts, and either dried cherries or cranberries, along with this easy no-oil-added Maple Citrus Dressing.

shepherd's pie

Hearty Lentil Shepherd’s Pie [Read more…]

There’s a New ‘Zine in Town by Victoria Moran

Fashion magazines . . . Ah, the guilty pleasure! I first fell in love with them when I was ten. I was in Italy and picked up a copy of Mademoiselle because it was the only thing I could find to read in English. The hotel’s elevator operator, a dashing young Frenchman, said to me, “Mademoiselle. C’est française, n’est-ce pas?” That was enough. I planned to read those magazines every month forever – and I pretty much have.

They’ve given my life beauty, fantasy, and some benign escape. They also trained my eye for fashion and it’s been a lifelong love. (I remember talking with a friend years ago about how skilled she was at home décor, and she told me that she’d spent her allowance as a kid on Architectural Digest and House Beautiful. It seems that the education we choose for ourselves early on has a way of sticking.)

Unfortunately, however, the bloom is somewhat off the fashion magazine rose for me because the fashion industry itself can be so cruel. I suppose that happens on a lot of levels – implying, for example, that only certain body types are acceptable, or that anyone who won’t (or can’t) spend money on designer labels is somehow deficient. Then, of course, there are human rights abuses in the garment trade in many parts of the world. But for me the cruelty that hits closest to home is the use and abuse of animals in those magazines – at times tolerated, at others celebrated. I’ve seen fur go out of favor, even on those glossy pages, twice in my life – the 1970s and the 1990s – and both times I thought it was the death knell for that awful industry. But it rallied – and the last time that happened, Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue, was seen as the savior of fur coats and collars and cuffs, and the people who profit from them.

I realize that leather is more difficult for people to transition away from than fur. My leather epiphany came during the day I spent in a slaughterhouse and saw the skins sliced in a single piece off cows who moments before had been as alive as me, creating a growing “leather pile,” another source of income for the animal ag cartel. Sure, the shoes in those magazines are artfully designed, but as Emerson said of meat, “…however scrupulously the slaughterhouse is concealed in the graceful distance of miles, there is complicity.”

Even the ads for cosmetics, the pacifying promise of becoming more “beautiful” and “radiant,” are more often than not promoting jars and bottles filled with the suffering and torment of animal experimentation.

You can imagine my elation, then, when Main Street Vegan Academy graduate Adrienne Borgersen, a New York City image consultant and fashion designer Lois Eastlund teamed up to create an entirely vegan and cruelty-free publication, La Fashionista Compassionista – LAFC for short. When they asked if I’d be in the premier issue, I was over the moon. And when they said I’d be on the cover, I could hardly believe it.

LAFCMagCover FINAL

I’m sixty-four years old, and I’m being asked to do a fashion shoot – something I’d daydreamed about as a fashion student myself at eighteen. Well, if you wait long enough . . . .

lafcbox

So, on a most memorable Saturday a few weeks back, Borgersen and Eastlund came to my apartment with their gifted photographer, Chris Pearce, and the dreams of my former life came true. The equipment was set up, and my erstwhile living room became the backdrop for holiday season wonders and LAFC’s holiday issue. The Lois Eastlund dresses were such fun to wear (and, I was to learn, affordable for regular folks). The photographer even had an English accent (all fashion photographers had English accents when I was eighteen!). And my fabulously photogenic dog, Forbes, got in on the act. [Read more…]

How ‘The Daniel Plan’ Did Not Meet My Expectations by Rev. Russell Elleven, DMin, VLCE

There is something very powerful about expectations. I remember, as a child, when I expected a certain gift to be under the tree – and it was not – I experienced a great deal of disappointment. I know there are times when I disappoint my spouse. She expects me to do something (or not to do some thing), I do something different than what she expects, and voilà, we are sitting down having one of those conversations (my partner is a wonderful communicator!).

One of the psychologists I have studied the most, Albert Ellis, is supposed to have said something like, “The best way to go through life is to lower your expectations.” Though I have not actually found those words in the books of his that I’ve read, there are many mental health professionals who toy with this idea of how low expectations may increase happiness.

I believe there is little doubt that expectations best serve us when managed. My unrealistic expectations create upsets, and upsets lead to disappointments, and too many disappointments can lead to places we don’t want to go.

The reason I tell you this is because I did not manage my expectations when I read The Daniel Plan: 40 Days to a Healthier Life.

The Daniel Plan

Let me be honest and tell you why I was disappointed.

The book is written by very well-known men. Rick Warren, the mega-church minister and author of books which have sold in the millions, and Drs. Daniel Amen and Mark Hyman, both well known in their respective fields and both featured on PBS television specials. These men hold great influence in our world around the areas of faith and health. And when I discovered they had teamed up to write a book called The Daniel Plan, I really felt like that child hoping to find something especially for me under the Christmas tree.

You see, I thought the book was going to extoll the virtues of a vegan diet. I am a vegan. I eat, for the most part, a whole foods plant based diet for a lot of reasons, but I came to this way of eating initially as a way to improve my health. And it did. My health improved dramatically when I ate a healthy vegan diet. And it is natural, I think, that you want to read the works of others who agree with your position. We all do this. Fox News viewers and MSNBC viewers want to have their ideas reinforced by “experts” from their respective camps. And I was thinking, “Wow! If Rich Warren, Daniel Amen, and Mark Hymen are going to tout a vegan message, this could be huge!”

Now, why would I think they were going to do this? Why did I believe these men were going to proclaim veganism to the world?

I based this assumption (this expectation) on the title of the book, The Daniel Plan. Daniel was a visionary and prophet in the Hebrew Bible (you may remember Daniel and the Lion’s Den). Rick Warren is a renowned pastor of a huge church. Though I, too, am an educated minister, I am admittedly no biblical scholar. But surely, I thought, veganism and faith were about to intersect in a powerful way.

They did not.

All Warren really says about Daniel is, “…I was preaching that day about a man in the Bible named Daniel who refused to eat junk food and challenged a king to a health contest, I named the program The Daniel Plan.” (Kindle Locations 103-104)

And he is correct. The story in the Bible tells us Daniel was in the custody of King Nebuchadnezzar who had seized Jerusalem. Nebuchadnezzar wanted to educate him (and others) in the ways of Babylon. Nebuchadnezzar wanted to wine and dine them so ordered that Daniel and the other captives be given royal rations of rich food and wine. Because only the wealthy were able to eat much animal food back then, we can safely assume an abundance of meat was on the table.

Daniel, however, refused the rich food (he would not be “defiled” by it) and said, “Let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink.”

The Daniel Plan 2

Now that is a vegan diet — an austere one, to be sure, but vegan (perhaps raw) nonetheless. This disturbed the guard because Nebuchadnezzar’s orders were not to be defied. But Daniel basically said, “Let’s just try this for ten days. Give me vegetables and water, give the others the royal treatment, and we’ll see who performs better.” [Read more…]

Vegan Tween: A Mother-Daughter Interview by Lynette Cowie, VLCE

Isabelle is almost a teenager, a time when friends become new major influencers. Yet this vegan tween is already facing and dealing with peer pressure on her terms. This beautiful young girl is also my daughter and today she gently tells us about what it’s like to stand up for one’s ethics at the age of 12.

vegan tween

How did you feel when you first heard about veganism? “I was totally keen to go onboard; even vegetarian wasn’t enough of a leap for me. I wanted to get all cruelty off my plate. I’ve always felt a deep compassion and connection with nature and its animals. It just didn’t feel right or fair to eat or use them.”

What is the most interesting thing you have felt or learnt in these past 18 months? “I’ve felt more physically lively and I’m so learning how to stand up for what I believe in!”

Aside from your sister, what’s it like to be the only other vegan in your school? “It’s challenging. Sometimes I wish there was another vegan in my grade to stand beside me. There’s plenty of teasing about me eating only plants. This happens in class, whenever the subject of meat or food in general comes up.”

vegan tween 1

What type of teasing? “Things like they say they are top of the food chain and I am then below that. I also get teased, mainly by the guys, for being slim, which they call thin. I laugh this off, and give it right back, by jokingly telling them that it’s just because they’re fat! I know that what I eat is solid good food, filled with protein, calcium, antioxidants, fiber and all that good stuff which makes my body strong and healthy.”

How do you deal with these types of social attitudes?  “I don’t take it very personally because they don’t mean to hurt me. They’re just either curious or crazy defensive.”

And lunch box time, how does that go?  “Well often, out of pure curiosity, someone might ask me what I’m eating during school break and another will quickly comment ‘gross stuff.’ But at least I have plenty of girl friends who will stand up for me, not because they believe in veganism, but because they see these comments as rude and tactless.”

What does your lunch box vs. their lunchbox tell you? (Laughs) “That I eat a lot healthier. There’s biltong (cured meat), chicken strips and chips, ham and melted cheese sandwiches in theirs. I like my ‘mac & cheese’, coconut chunks, snow peas, sometimes freshly baked bread with hummus or peanut butter, always strawberries in summer.”

What would make your school experience with regards to veganism better? “I wish for vegan awareness, firstly among the teachers who would then filter it through to the students. That would be great but teachers are just parents, too, feeding their kids what they were fed, or what they assume is good and so it goes on.” [Read more…]

How to Create a Monthly Vegan Potluck in Your Community by Bonnie Goodman, VLCE

Whether you make the change for the love of animals, the environment, social justice, or your health, becoming vegan is such a thrill. But it can also be lonely. The desire to share the magic of this amazing lifestyle may not always be met with enthusiasm by friends and family, and here you just want to explore new recipes and throw a dinner party every night! Well, that might be a bit much….How about once a month?

No matter where you live, there are other vegans (or pre-gans) in your community – and they may be feeling a bit isolated, too. Starting a plant-based potluck in your town is a great way to find like-minded people and make new friends. A potluck can be a cozy get-together with other vegans, where you don’t have to worry about what’s in the food, and can just relax. Or do you want to create a potluck for activism?

The intention of our potluck in Montana

ThanksLivingDinner1 copy ThanksLivingDinner2

(Photo Credit 2013 Thanks Living Dinner: Robert Howell)

is to demystify veganism and share delicious food and easy recipes with people who are open-minded and veg-curious. Everyone is welcome at Live and Let Livingston events; our slogan is “You don’t have to be Vegan, but the Food Does!”

Four people attended the first potluck six years ago. Now we average a couple dozen every month, and double that during the holidays. Thanks-Living Dinners are the most popular, and our “Ugly Christmas Sweater Party” even made front page news!

Christmas Sweater Party

If you want to start a monthly potluck that’s open to the public and educational, here are ten tips: [Read more…]