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Monday, March 26, 2012

: ask a vegan : week 7 : the meat-eating vegan? :

happy monday!
todays post is mostly a story ; not so much a question.

so, if you were here yesterday [or on twitter or facebook ;)] ; you saw that i announced my first e-book!! its called the 3-day a week vegan and has 30 nice & easy vegan recipes. $1 from each sale will go directly to charity & the first 25 folks will be entered to win some really sweet vegan products. you can read the whole launch post here.

in that post, i shared that my very first job was at a meat market in super-small town minnesota. my dad has been a butcher my whole life [he shoots, butchers & processes his own meat ; all by hand] and my mom had a garden my entire childhood.
my parents were sustainable & 'farm-to-table' before it was cool. [my parents are such innovators ;)]

now, i cant have dairy ; i have a pretty rough intolerance. and i dont eat meat. i havent had a steak or hamburger for YEARS. BUT, because my dad is a [sustainable] craftsmen, he sends us beef or venison sticks whenever we see him. see, blake still eats meat & dairy. not very often, but when he does, it is only meat that was raised on a small farm [almost always local] & has lived a good, calm life with other animal-friends.

but see, i grew up eating local meat. when i was 14, i worked in a meat market [for 2 years!]. i also grew up fishing with my family. my parents, grandparents & uncles all had fishing boats ; its just 'what you did.' when i was 12, my dad taught me how to fillet fish. fishing & preparing fish with my dad is one of the fondest memories of my life.

every year during lent, small towns throughout minnesota [im talking towns with <700 people] , host fish-frys ; most are held at american legions or community centers. you pay $8-10 bucks for all-you-can-eat [fried & breaded] fish with german potato salad, white bread with butter & glasses of milk. 
as a kid, we went to quite a few [and i was always allowed a glass of root-beer][i didnt get to drink pop when i was a kid!]

this year, my dad invited us down & we went. since i cant have the milk, butter or the potato salad, i had the fish [and a root beer!] and it was amazing. and i dont feel guilty.
because i love my dad. and a once-a-year fish fry where i eat 6 pieces of fish, makes me feel nostalgic for my childhood. 

the fish were delicious. i would never go out to eat & get fish, but in a town of 700 people, with my dad, sitting at the same place we sat when i was 7 years old, it was amazing.

and on the way home, we stopped at the meat market i use to work at. the smells & the memories were great. i felt so lucky to be able to stand there, walk around and remember when i was [a weirdo] in high school. blake bought a stick of summer sausage & i definitely enjoyed a few pieces.

so, why am i telling you that i ate animals?!
because i want you to know that it is OKAY. i choose to be vegan 364 days a year & i feel great while doing it. i live a well-balanced & sustainable life, & i feel good about that. and the one day a year i choose to relive my childhood ; i think that is okay.

i think the idea of 'living green' or 'going vegan' is scary & intimidating for a lot of folks. any small step you take to improve your life & the lives of others [humans & animals] ; makes you successful.

thanks for reading!
if you are interested in becoming an affiliate for my book, send me an email or read this post for all the deets!
[being an affiliate = you placing my e-book button on your blog. when your readers buy my book through your site, you get a cut of the money]