umegoodness is a space where I can share what I’ve learned and am learning about healthy vegan eating and the pursuit of a balanced lifestyle of whole foods, active living, and overall wellness.
Update: Baby on the way! The blog will be changing somewhat as we welcome a new family member into the fold this Christmas/New Years. I will be on the path to being a health-conscious vegan mommy and this will reflect in some of my upcoming posts. I hope to share the experience of becoming a parent with my readers, while still sharing my discoveries of recipes and other tidbits.
I have dealt with food addiction, compulsive overeating and excess weight for pretty much my whole life. I have tried countless diets and fads to try to find balance with my weight, but nothing has worked for the long term. However, this trying struggle has not been without its positive discoveries. I learned that I love exercise and especially running and have successfully gone on to run a handful of 10K races. Along the way I also discovered a love for nutrition and began researching health voraciously which led ultimately to discovering the merits of a plant-based diet. Five years ago I went vegan and it has been an amazing life changing path for me. But being vegan does not mean instant weight loss. High fat, high salt, and high sugar foods are available in any diet.
I believe that a whole foods, unprocessed, balanced vegan diet is the key to long term health as has been written about extensively by Dr. Joel Fuhrman, Dr. T. Colin Campbell, and many others. But healthy eating is not always as easy as it sounds! I have started a Healthy Life List – a bucket list with health and fitness goals I’d like to accomplish, and this blog will help me to keep track and share my discoveries with you.
The name of this blog was inspired by a popular macrobiotic food, the umeboshi plum. I make a delicious, healthy and simple umeboshi vinegar vinaigrette (from the Kind Life cookbook by Alicia Silverstone) that I put onto steamed leeks or bok choy – this simple, clean, nutritious and delicious recipe is one that I find inspirational.
Cast of characters:
Valerie: Me! A 27 year old with an infatuation with Apple products, an undergraduate degree in Art History, a Masters degree in Communication Studies (with a thesis on art museum studies & the web) and a keen love of running, animals and cooking/nutrition. Currently expecting a little baby! Due December 28th.
Jason: My beloved husband of two years and companion of over 10. We met in high school and have been inseparable ever since. He is supportive, patient, comedic in the worst way possible, and an incurable gamer. What can I say? Geeks are the bomb.
Leah: The newest addition to our furry family and by far the most high maintenance. An athletic, loving, excitable, energetic-beyond-belief bundle of fur who makes us laugh every day. At 2 years old she is still learning to settle down and seems to have recovered from her experience moving from place to place as a rescue. She was rescued originally from a Quebec kill pound by an animal rescue and then was fostered for a short time. As a result of all her experience she is very attached to us, which has made off-leash dog park jaunts very easy.
Benjamin: our first furry family member whom we adopted after he was found abandoned in an apartment building (posters hung about led to no one claiming him). He is a furry flurry of contradictions: a bit of a grouch, independent, an amazing jumper, and yet prone to bouts of passionate and unabashed cuddle sessions. At least once a day I am called upon for some serious nuzzly cuddly action, and I can’t complain.
Mars: How to describe our youngest feline? While he may be male he has the most feminine luxurious fur and dainty features. He absolutely lives for his food and for being brushed and doted upon. Innocent, forgetful, and just gorgeous. We adopted him from a local SPCA – he was the one ignoring all visitors and curled up in a ball asleep.