Tuesday, February 28, 2012

So the Weekend concluded~

          Yesterday was my "Sunday" and I won't be having that "blues" that I could count on like clockwork anymore...anyone can with a full-time job that fell on weekdays. When 9pm starts to roll by, I won't feel the need, innate desire to keep my eyes open and push back sleep time...because the sooner you close you eyes, the closer Monday truly is. I won't have this going on for...months~ I'll add a teeny shimmy to this.
     Since my final day with the kids (tears), there's been full-fledged chill time in action. I walk the girls, chase them around sometimes, do my yoga, get some necessary vitamin D and have spent some time playing in the kitchen! There are some things I want to tackle...lasagna (damn heavy- essentially a ratatouille with some more body, no noodles), falafels, jalfrezi, vegan mayo (why, because I can), and master some sort of whole-wheat nut-studded bread!
     This past "week" of free time has got me playing around with all sorts of stuff and getting in some quirky finds. There's been a LOT of puppy snuggling and relaxing but there's also been a fair share of wandering.
snuggle~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     On Friday, I caught a movie with an old friend over at Coex and I'm feeling I need to wander the stall more, some of the new fashion is so awful, it's desirable. For example...I really want this track suit.
photo taken by VeganBeats
      On Saturday, I was getting ready to hit up a Birthday party for one of my favorite Seoul Vegans! The theme of his party was to dress like you did in high school. I rocked the Catholic uniform back in my promming days. I scraped together a bunch of clothes and did a whole load of skirt rolling and well..it's almost there!
Catholic School girlin'- photo taken by VeganBeats
     The party was at an Irish pub, soaked in good music, filled with people wearing Hawaiian shirts, army cargo pants, pinstriped suits...a room of glorious people! This got me missing high school, back int he visual environment of high school likes...granted I wore the same thing everyday at school, I miss my uniform.
     Kia whipped up a bunch of cute and delicious cupcakes! She made vanilla cupcakes with hazelnut frosting, some with vanilla, and others with chocolate frosting. I had a vanilla frosting cupcake and...nom nom nom!
cupcakes! (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     Several drinks in, hugs and birthday exchanges, I wandered off for midnight coffee and one on one time with another wonderful Vegan. So far...so good...!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

present for pups

     Children express nearly all that they are feeling, filter absent. As we age, as society and the opinions of "others" molds us, our filter grow thicker, stronger, darker. Emotional free expression is somewhat silenced, not completely, but enough to feel choked, muffled, hidden. Extreme upset, unrequited happiness is tromped upon when genuinely shown, or we feel guilty about it, our parts tell us, force us to throw on a mask or sorts. I want to be child-like in the sense that I will act as I feel and those self-guilt/judging parts will be mute. I do act as I feel, but not to the full extent. I doubt that anyone over the age of eleven really does, there may be a select minuscule few, but on the wide and broadened end, that just can't be.
     I took the girls for a walk, and they zipped out the door, as always, eager for some play time. But this time, they ran out of the gate too. The landlord was here and left the door ajar...immediately all my fears, concerns overwhelmed me and I sprinted after them. I imagined losing them, they never coming back, a car accidentally smashing into them, them being scared, lost, nervous...coming back to the house with no pups with me, Melissa coming home without her girls to greet her, anything bad happening...I ran the streets in tears full of fear and extreme anxiety. I was a child...genuine true full-forced emotion freely expressing itself without any fear or concern of judgement. I was present.
     I caught one of the girls and felt immediate relief, half better...and wandered the streets in distress and more fear searching for the other girl. She's a scared little thing and so sweet...an innocent child. I imagined what she must be feeling, how scared she was, and I felt so responsible, so failed. I'm letting her down...still I was present, scared and running. I asked strangers on the street, clearly disheveled and overwrought with panic.
     How did these approached people respond...like I was a child. Soft voices, gentle verbal fluctuations, and gestures of concern were immediately presented to me. No one strayed away from the crying sloppy person barreling down the streets, they offered aid, and support. Winding through more hills and streets, my heartbeat screaming and stabbing into my ears, people I spoke to earlier found me, telling me where she was.
     Running the directions given, she went home, the was back. I walked into the gate, tears of joy and overwhelming "thankfulness" consumed me, and the tears were no longer upset and fear, relief and happiness. I crumbled, the landlord trying to comfort me and babbling on in Korean...I only felt, was only present, genuine, there, real.

     So many emotions in a span of ten minutes, and more child-like than I have felt in too long. This got me in touch...

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Busy week, Last day...pack rattin'

     This past week has been very tightly packed, I love busy but this week was scheduled enough that I didn't get in all my P90X! I can't deny that I'm feeling insecure, angry, and pretty aggravated about it. I've mentioned it so many times, I like crossing off my daily list and the P90X was a point on the list along with a place on my yearly/sectioned goals and resolutions. I've still been active...but this week I've been too tired to make time for it. (Not acceptable- parts of me say, while others try to be realistic and reasonable)

     Be gentle with yourself~ I say it often, and believe it...take the advice!

pat juk is a nice way to relax right~ this was at a tutor gig... (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     Everyday I wake up around 5, walk the dogs (dog sitting again!), grab the bus to West Seoul and teach until 9/9:10, sprint to the subway back to Seocho to the kindy job, work until 4:30/5, walk to the next tutor session, catch another bus and walk the dogs, go to another tutoring session...home around 11. It's too late to work out (not really) but I'm very fatigued and I have to wake up at 5! Ugh~
     Today was my last day with the kids, my last day with my school and I was ready to leave, knew I would miss my kids but...the pouring of tears wasn't something I prepared for. At the end of my second class, my kids ran around me, wrapping their teeny arms around my shoulders, neck, legs, and  kissing my cheeks, saying how much they'll miss me, cooing and giggling...and I. Lost. It~ I tried to wipe my eyes, but kids being kids only provided more love, making me cry more...

     It's funny how much all my kids have changed me, taught me throughout this past year. This was a job in the beginning, a means to fill my wallet...they became a source of love, energy, and joy; they are the reason why I stayed. I send so much love to them...I really love them. They're not even my own, but I love them this much~ ('This'  being completely undefineable).

     After today, red and puffy eyed me sloppily packed my apartment up into my bathroom because tomorrow all the furniture is going to be replaced...Veganbeatin' pack rat in action~

my apartment fits into my bathroom~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
      This year I learned a great deal about love, genuine happiness, how to live the moment...and my teachers were all younger than 7...
nothing but love~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)

Monday, February 20, 2012

Itchin in the Kitch~

     My cooking has been suffering a LOT lately. Suffering by just not happening. (How often do I whine about this) but I did some playing and created some pretty flavor packed stuff!~
     I'm a little exhausted and lacking words at the moment...so here's some pictures!
tumeric rosemary and black pepper almonds (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     When I go food shopping, I've been buying nuts, which really isn't necessary. They're expensive and pretty easy to make at home. So I went for it and made some AWESOME spiced and flavor jacked almonds! These are tumeric, rosemary, and black pepper "French-fried" almonds...yum!!
     Just to make something pretty I whipped up a chocolate strawberry cake~

chocolate strawberry cake (photo taken by veganBeats)
     Can you see the strawberries peeking out?!~ To make it extra pretty and a bit more complex, I made a raw coconut cream and chocolate hazelnut "frosting."

pretty! (photo taken by veganBeats)
     This was rich, lovely, full of fruit, and besides the natural fats pumping from coconut, it's essentially fat free. The only additional fats in here were whipped flax seeds!!

     More to come, more playing to get on~

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Vatos Urban Tacos on TV!~

Chyeak ye for Vatos~~
If you haven't gone yet....GO!~

Last time I went~
The time I went and THIS was being filmed!  (Hannah and I are getting those maekgolitas!)
The first article I wrote on them~

Slow Positive Grind~

     The "funk's" been addressed, acknowledged, and on the verge of being better understood...I'm slowly (but surely) poking at some very missed waters. Last night I followed through with the being social goal. Social through a very manipulated definition, I was in the presence of some of those beautiful Seouls~ I haven't been in a very present or pleasant state of mind and position...which may clash with that "vegan yoga theory"-
     phbbt~ again, human first and still a vegan yogi. (I'm checking in more and my parts are screaming~ DO SOME DAMNED YOGA!)
find some peace (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     Back into focus...last night was Phil's birthday (remember last time?) and parts of me, most of me- was on "bail" mode and I felt so much of me turning into the internal... The guilty parts barely murmur and a not so healthy-selfish part is turning to the isolation "solution." Which really...doesn't solve very much if you're not constructive with it. I haven't seen the Seoul crew in nearly a month, and I missed them. And I needed to get out, but I needed a push so...I turned to pharmacological activity, some neurotransmitter stimulation- I needed to get my endorphins going!

     Pushed through  core synergistics, walked Peta (fellow Veg-head's pup), used that buzz to crash through a shower, throw on clothes and before the isolating parts started drawing me in, I was out the door.
Hamlet and Peta! (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     I'm really glad I did. I'm thankful for the friends I have here, I wasn't very social, or positive, but I was myself...and even if not understood, accepted.

     I came home feeling better, a bit more driven, and like I had some more edge to kick this funk in the butt! So much edge that I threw on some power colors...
power stripes (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     This post isn't doesn't have a lot of direction, but it's sort of a recollection/reflection of (some of) the frazzled and scattered deals being made.

Good night folks~
I promise some vegan jazz soon, pictures of carrots and kale isn't very drool-worthy...
slow down, drink some tea (photo taken by VeganBeats)


reverse block

     I love writing, and do it often...but I find myself staring at my computer, keys resting at my fingertips with a screaming buzz cutting into my ears. There's an abundance of thoughts, ideas, frustrations~ an overwhelming siege of them. Every emotion and part is clawing to get out another, raising voices over one another, blinding and binding words from being released. There are no words, not enough to cling together at least to be able to accurately describe what I'm feeling, how all of this is effecting me. A series of similes and metaphors creates an idea, but translating them clearly when they're all simultaneously shrieking proves a mighty challenge. Imagine all of your friends playing their favorite song at the same time...it'll no longer be music and messages...noise, united fuzz.
     Usually people get hit with writer's block by a lack of inspirations or ideas, I'm dealing with an influx of them. Granted, complaining about this isn't necessary, I'm glad that there's some juice flowing~ but they're cutting one another off. Feeling too many t hings, thinking far too much...I'm wearing myself out.

     The past couple posts have been undeniably bitter~ maybe I'm turning into a grapefruit? I've trying to re-evaluate my life, where it's going, where I want to go, with my mind, spirit, thoughts, legs~
I'm in a funk...I have things to write, but my ability is blocked.

Clearly a new start is around the bend...but to what?

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Eats from the past~

     My blogging frequency has been so spotty lately, apologies. I haven't been in a super positive place for a bit, I'm trying to get smiling again but...I've been so bitter and aggressive lately. I also want to make this blog something positive and in high spirits. People aren't always on the rise and in a happy place but all this negativity is my own, so why share it?

     To keep myself busy and focus on other things, I've done some kitchen playing. From bean burgers, tofu burgers, noodle salads, stews...I've got a packed freezer~ (sorry I don't have photos of everything)
noodle salad (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     The noodle salad was simple, but really flavorful. I added a load of veggies~ greens, lettuce, kale, onions, 김치, and garlic! I seasoned it with some sesame seeds, soy sauce,  red pepper flakes, sesame oil, vinegar, and green tea powder~
tofu bean burgers (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     The burgers were really tasty, and chalk full of veggies. I steamed some bean sprouts and cabbage and mixed it with fresh onions, garlic, 김치, shredded carrots, zukes, sun-dried tomatoes, tofu, and red kidney beans. For seasoning (besides the garlic~ there was so much of it that it's an ingredient) black pepper, green tea salt, red pepper flakes, white pepper, pinches of basil, thyme, and rosemary! I literally chopped everything up to super tiny pieces, added it to crushed tofu, mashed beans and held it all together with vital wheat gluten. I'm still lacking an oven, so I had to turn to the pan fry~

ahhh~ them past eats...

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Just to melt your heart...a smidgen~

      Just some purring from my little lady~

I know the video is poor quality..but hey, the contents are more important on this front~

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Dessertin Dips a Daze!

     This past weekend I got together with the lovely Melissa, we were ready to dance, super chilly, and prepped with high protein noms! The plan was a 'RETROSKANKMANIA' dance party, 80's hair whipped, and florescently adorned but that kind of fell through but it was still AWESOME! Melissa whipped up a delicious turmeric and garlicky hummus (we both like hummus) that was...so good! Homer moans deserved!
Melissa's yummy hummus!! (photo taken by VeganBeast)
     I played with some ideas and made some desert dips...but SUPER HEALTHY dessert dips! I'm not into sweets very much (gimme them salty stuff) but maybe it's the rounding Vday situation or the overwhelming lack of sweets that had me really thinking "Snickerdoodles drool"~
     I wanted healthy and guilt free, high protein preferably and I wound up with a Snickerdoodle raisin dip and a chocolate chip cookie (with green tea kisses) dip!
snickerdoodle raisin's a blazin (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     I've never been one to gorge in cookie-dough but I imagine the is a close one, right? So...what did I do for the snickerdoodle jam?

Snickerdoodle Raisin's a blazin~
What you need:

  1. 1 can of chickpeas
  2. 1-2 T nut butter (I used chunky peanut...nommm)
  3. 1-2 T of cinnamon...up to you really, this veganbeat LOVES cinnamon~higher fiber!!
  4. 2 or more T water, add more for preferred consitency!
  5. 1+ T liquid sweetner...feel free to add more if you want more sweet 
  6. 1/2-3/4 C raisins (OR dried cranberries!) 
What to do:
  1. Got a blender? Mix the first five ingredients..then throw in them dried yums!
Enjoy with apple and asian pear slices, or some whole wheat crackers! YUM

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Dip with some Green tea kisses (photo taken by VeganBeats)
      Cookie dough, the mere thought of it and I start thinking some sort of post-break up "I WILL REGRET THIS" therapy...but after working out hard, and barely eating anything sweet (How I've avoided this in Korea) this is deserved...hell it always is, it's nearly fat free!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Dip with some Green tea kisses
What you need:

  1. 1 can chickpeas
  2. 1/4-1/5 dark DARK chocolate
  3. 1/4 t green tea salt
  4. 1-2 T nut butter (again, the crunchy peanut butter)
  5. water until preferred consistency
  6. 1-2 T liquid sweetner (or dry sugar)...sweeten to your liking!
What to do:
  1. blender this jam! Just do it...and love it!
Serve with some sort of hard stone fruit or whole wheat cracker

So much protein, fiber, and all around goodness! If you can find some date sugar, I bet this would taste even better. Maple syrup, where you at?

Sugar free is very possible, and you won't substitute taste...agave!!~

Happy nomming!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Mandu the anger~

     I'm still on with the goals & resolutions...EXCEPT yesterday I almost forgot my vitamin! I know it's not a huge deal, but I think taking vitamins in the am, as soon as you wake up is far more beneficial than taking it late at night...I feel like I messed my whole vita-loop. Ugh~
     It's the weekend now and I'm all around grateful for it. This week has been, on the sidelines a roller coaster. The new job front was full of all sorts of unnecessary complication and drama (ahh Korea~) and I was back in that cozy bed of "Where do I go with my life?" I mean, who isn't asking themselves this question? So many life references "figure out your life?" "what do you want in life?" "life goals" blah blah blah...yea, we're all a bit lost, confused, unsure...this journey has no map. My lack of settlement (hell, let's be honest, it'll be a while before that words hits my picture) gets me in all sorts of a tizzy. When all this job stuff started throwing itself in increments at a pool of lava...I grow downright grumpy, short-fused, bitter, and so...negative. I find myself internally snapping at EVERYONE...this week if I had a swear jar, it'd be brimming over. I know the whole aura of "vegan healthy" "heady positive" "VT hippy" and "yoga bliss" lady but...I'm human first, when things aren't in order, or someone throws a stick in my wheel (remember that scene in Breaking Away...cyclists, you know) instead of braking down, I get growling. I don't know where this shift happened. In the past, I would crumble, shake, or shudder at anything tripping up my path(s) but now~

     I expect things to be followed through, when you say you'll do something, make a promise...make it happen. If I was a toilet, I'd take all the shit I was expected to, but...I'm not. When I make promises, I keep them; I take on responsibilities, I do them...I cannot understand not following through with something. And I mean with everything.
     Walking down the icy streets, or any of the streets (especially Seoul-side) how many times do you almost bump into someone because the person in front of you is walking then suddenly and abruptly stops? FOLLOW THROUGH~~~ If you're walking straight, in a crowded area, especially the subway...if you're walking, keep walking. If you need to stop...be like a good driver and pull over. I know this is little but...<~ little things are angering me.
     I did more yoga stateside...maybe that's what I'm needing? More "me" time? I'm finding myself wearing very thin over all the "idiocy" that runs rampant.

     When I got negative stateside, my mom and I would chill out and make one of two things...김치 (kimchi) or 만두 (mandu). Even if my mother and I were in those boiling-heated arguments where our words slit throats like butchers (hint~it's horrid...) making one of these things smoothed everything over. Maybe because it takes up time, preparation, concentration~ almost a repetitive meditation.
     Finding myself in a hot-headed position I attempted to deal with this anger in what seems only natural...만두 prep time. I had a bunch of the ingredients, threw on some groove salad and got a working.
pre crush~ photo taken by VeganBeats
mix mix mix mash mash mash (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     As violent as this sounds...chopping veggies really helps out with frustrations...the only result it really gets though (besides the potential lost digit) is a LOT of chopped veggies. I got a little crazy and attacked cabbage, kale, bean sprouts, carrots, onions, turnips, lettuce, celery, kimchi, and garlic...but for the 만두 I used everything but the celery...result~> Happy Hamlet!!
celery time~ nom nom nom (photo taken by VeganBeats)
    Okay, focus~ then I mashed a bunch of tofu up with all these veggies, added a splash of green tea salt, soy sauce, and a tease of sesame oil. Spooned this mash into some 만두 skin and~
ready to cook! (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     Get it all done...throw it into a fry pan and fry it up~ yeah, not healthy, but I only ate three.
Homer moan* (photo taken by VeganBeats)
    Worth it, yes...The 만두 mission/meditation was about 2 hours...and do I feel better...
bite (photo taken by VeganBeats)

yoga time~

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Vatos Urban Tacos~ chyeak ye

     I completed week 1 of the P90X regular but have switched to the lean workout...so far, still loving it. I've kept with my vitamin schedule, have been present with my family back home (chyea skype), do my stretches, and have been social. I'm finding I have more energy, am overall more present in situations, and I've even gotten back into reading (more than usual). Currently I'm getting into The Omnivores Dilemma, it's been on my list for years (why have I waited so long?) I've been getting into the habit of reminding myself why I chose this lifestyle...am I the only person that does this? I watch the food education films (Forks Over Knives, Gary Yourofsky's speach, etc) only to get upset, but also to keep myself in touch with my reasons...

     Anyways, let's tie this into being social. Last week I got together with some of those Amazing Seouls that bring so much brightness into this country! I spent all day Saturday apartment hunting then wandered to Itaewon to the glorious Vatos Urban Tacos. The restaurant was super busy and buzzing with happy diners (and drinkers)! At first the group was just myself and three buddies, but soon enough we were joined by four more people! Kenny, John, and Jeena were more than accommodating ^^*!~ Pol and David had never been to Vatos and earlier that evening they suggested my showing them some vegan eateries...made the recommendation for this urban taco joint and they were down. We first got some drinks and UGH~ delicious!
my mango makgeolita up front (11,500w) and David's frozen orange margarita (12,000w) photo taken by VeganBeats
     I went with the mango makgeolita (which I got last time) and David went with the orange frozen margarita. The makgeolita is only ONLY available at Vatos and it is too good, I find myself craving this! I love makgeoli, and this just makes it better! Even David (not a makgeoli fan) said it was good. The drinks are generous, massive bowls of tasty drinks~ you can't find any drink this size, for these prices...worth it. And what did Pol get?
Mexican Martini 15,000W (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     The Mexican martini, "This is three drinks...Jesus that's good!"
I've never been a fan of martinis, too salty, briny, and as wimpy as this sounds~ I'm not a fan of tasting liquor...(unless its a good whisky). But this drink(s) was very well done. It was strong, heated (there were jalapenos in it!) and again, generous. The mixer was full of more drink and it was so good that our table downed about four of them!
     Let's get to the food...I've heard nothing but great things about the kimchi carnita fries, not vegan but I wanted the guys to have a great impression of this joint (they were already impressed with the drinks...so) but so far, not difficult. The kimchi carnita fries (9,900w) are french fries served with shredded pork, salsa, cheese, sour cream, and lots of green~ the guys dug in and literally moaned when the forks hit mouths.
kimchi carnita fries (photo taken by VeganBeats)
      DO NOT FEAR fellow veg-heads, Vatos is SUPER vegan friendly. They have a new chef that has a lot of vegan experience back in the states and he whipped up a super spicy and delicious taco! Everything here is made to order and it's fresh, the quality of the food makes this very clear.
Vegan taco~ (photo taken by VeganBeats)
     The taco was loaded with heat, well cooked and sauteed veggies (onions, peppers, cabbage, etc) and served in a crunchy fresh corn tortilla. It was served alongside a cabbage slaw that I really can't get over. I'm a bit of purist when it comes to veggies, so having something presented so honestly really makes this Vermont girl smiley (yea yea, I know I'm a Mass woman too)! Back in VT, I ate fresh, always fresh, local, honest food, so when it comes to fresh, I'm a snob. I LOVE that Vatos makes everything to order, and that everything tastes like REAL food. I've had tortillas that just, yech...it tastes like chemicals, old flour, salt...just awful. Having a real tortilla is a treat (Vatos makes them!!), and having veggies that aren't weeping (in Korea)...Awesome!
     The crew I was with were raving, and more than happy with the service, ambiance, energy, food...and drinks! The lay out of the space is very true to Kenny's intentions (check out the NEH article I wrote about it a while back)~ it's urban, chill, and welcoming. Everyone's in a positive state of mind, the food is great, drinks delicious...we left with smiles, happy tummies and:
     "I'll be back here again...many times."

This is for sure~

For directions/hours check out their site or my other post
Vatos Facebook site

Lean P90X Workout
PHASE 1 - 1st month
Week 2
  • Day 1 - Core Synergistics
  • Day 2 - Cardio X
  • Day 3 - Shoulders and Arms, Ab Ripper X
  • Day 4 - Yoga X
  • Day 5 - Legs and Back, Ab Ripper X
  • Day 6 - Kenpo X
  • Day 7 - Rest or X Stretch