Our idea of what constitutes "food" in American culture has become so skewed that it is almost unrecognizable. Our supermarkets are packed with products whose ingredients include unpronounceable chemicals, dyes, bacteria, and growth hormones. They are irradiated without our consent and contain GMOs.It's time to bring back FOOD. Pure unadulterated organic RAW food.This blog is a documentation of my continuing journey on a plant-based lifestyle.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Valentine's Day & Our New Co-op!

Hope everyone had a splendid, love-filled Valentine's Day! (No one says you need to have a boyfriend/girlfriend to spread the love!) I certainly did! This is our 7th Valentine's Day together. We never really go all out with chocolates or flowers, but we like to spend the day simply, together. And we always give each other what I call, "Love on Paper." I'm as sentimental as they come i'd much rather have a hand-made card or drawing to save and be able to look back at later on than any amount of chocolate. (I literally have two bins, a folder, and two shoe boxes FILLED with things that we have given each other over the years. This does not include our scrapbook album either! I think I have just about every movie ticket, reciept, baseball ticket, play, concert ticket we have ever gone too!) My Kevinly is very creative and a pretty damn good drawer so he always comes up with the sweetest little notes that remind me how lucky I am to have found my soulmate so early in life. My only request this year, other than LOP, was that we get down to business with two pints of Coconut Bliss. Thankfully, my wish was granted and then some!

 For V-day Kev and I headed to San Diego to check out our new Co-op; pretty far for us, about an hour and a half, but there are no other Co-ops in the OC. Total bummer, I know. Aside from shopping at the farmers market every week, we normally have to go to FOUR other stores to find the rest of the stuff we need like bananas, sesame seeds for whole made tahini, etc. It gets REALLY annoying, esp. for Kev because he works and goes to Grad. school so when he comes home and I tell him we have to go to Whole Foods, Mother's Market, and Henry's all in the same night, he is not a happy camper. While I personally don't mind the shopping, as I'd gladly spend all day in the food store just looking around, Kev can only take so much.

My dream is to be able to find everything I need at one place for a decent amount of money. Seriously, is this too much to ask? I'm embarrassed to admit that sometimes we have to go to TWO different Mother's Markets (Irvine AND Costa Mesa) to get what we need, because yes, the same store that is litearlly 10 miles (ish) apart from one another has DIFFERENT items and the SAME items at DIFFERENT prices! Insanity!

We joined the Co-op in hopes to be able to buy all our bulk foods plus the stuff we know we can not get around Orange County, like bulk unrefined, untoasted, seasame oil or my absolute favourite Raw Goji-Chocolate bars that I used to get in NYC and eat EVERYDAY; perhaps the only nut-filled bar that doesn't upset my stomach. They even have bulk herbs like dandelion and kava-kava! Let me tell you, I was in grocery store heaven! Plus, our co-op is very hip and they offer a bunch of raw food classes for FREE and have a deli upstairs that has raw items as well. A+ in my book. Our local health food store, Mother's Market, also has raw deli items, but they certainly do not have a bulk section like our co-op, nor do they carry the herbs I am typically looking for. After paying and assessing our bill we were extremely pleased, esp. since we both got a Coconut Bliss and a Kombucha (typically not part of our normal shop). 


Co-Op Items (some not pictured):
  • Fig, Fennel, & Flax Manna Bread
  • Organic Dates
  • Cherry Amertto Coconut Bliss
  • Dark Chocolate Coconut Bliss
  • Thanksgiving Herb Blend
  • Kava-Kava
  • Cayenne
  • Curry
  • Ginger
  • Dandelion
  • Burdock Root
  • Roobios Tea
  • Collards
  • Dino Kale
  • Parsley
  • Cilantro
  • Strawberry Kombucha
  • Gingeraid Kombucha
  • Vegan Chocolate Haystacks
  • Oats
  • Hulled Sesame Seeds
  • Pint of Raw, Unfiltered, Sesame Oil

All for under $50.00. It only costs us $15.00 to join AND because V-day was also customer appreciation day we got an additional 7% off our bill!

I was also happy to find that they had bulk raw, unpasterized barley miso, seaweeds, organic nuts, agave, wild honey, raw tahini, and Kev's Ezekial wraps for the same price that I usually get them at TJs. Score!

*I took pictures of both the coop, our full Sunday shop, AND San Diego only to come home and find out that I never put the picture chip back into the camera before we left! Duh.

Somewhere in Texas...

Anytime we have to drive anywhere Kev and I are reminded of our cross country trip to CA and how we often spent 8-9 hours in the car, sometimes 6-7 hours straight. An hour and a half is like nothing to us now, and Kev always likes to say, " It is amazing what a little conversation can do to pass the time!" I am greatful to have someone who keeps me as entertained during those long car trips. It reminds me of family vacations as a kid with my little brother, Matthew, and how we used to play "Make Me Laugh".

(Me, Matthew, my cousin Emily in the red)
He's definately not so little anymore! He's nineteen now! Yikes!

We plan to go back to the Co-op every two weeks or so to stock up on said goodies and hopefully continue to cut down on our shopping bill as well as the amount of stores we have to visit to get all that we need. Being a raw vegan is easy, sure, but getting quality Organic foods on a budget sometimes means you have to go a tinsy bit out of the way.

And if you are wondering about gas usage and our carbon foot-print, well, TJs, Henrys, and Costa Mesa Mother's are all in walking/biking distance from our apartment complex so you can be sure that i'm not driving when I go to stock up on food during the day. And, Santa Anna Mother's, is in the same parking lot as where Kev works so he just walks over to pick me up the stuff I need from there sometimes. Being New Yorkers, we are big walkers, so going 2 miles up the street to get groceries and walking there is like cake for us, in fact, we ENJOY it.

Though, I will say, sometimes I try and do to many things at once like going on my no pressure fun run AND grocery shopping..yeah, you try running back from the grocery store with a five pound bag of zucchini, cucs, toms, and poms! Not fun!

I guess you can take the girl out of New York, but you can never take the New York out of the girl...(yeah, sorry, had to hit my cliche quota for the day. woot! sat-is-fied!)

This week is filled with green smoothies, some Asian flare, and my very productive trip to the Costa Mesa library! As if my book reading list wasn't already sky high!

Au Revoir!