Sunday, December 25, 2011

Where have I been?


Hi all. No excuses for me in the least. I have been AWOL from this blog for a number of reasons. 

First of all I'd like to thank all those who are looking at this little blog on the tubal inter webs. I started it as a way to document what I ate and how much I spent so I could show others that yes, you can do pretty well as a vegan on a very tight income. It might not be super fancy, and it might require a lot of home cooking, but for the jobless, that is often a good thing.

I am happy to say, I am no longer jobless!
I got a very nice full time job as an illustrator for a start up. Yes, that's what I do, I'm a creative professional. Now, before the 'starting artist' comments start flooding in, let me tell you all that I looked for every type of gig I could find. Target, Fresh & Easy, cleaning houses, house sitting, dog walking, etc. Nothing was open.

This gig just dropped in my lap and I'm making sure I work hard at keeping it. These past few years have been hard, and to finally get a job, and in my field has made me feel leaps and bounds of grateful for everything.

The first thing I did when I got this job was think, "how can I give back," and within a few weeks I was working on a cancer fundraiser. Then I was getting gobs of freelance stuff, and as I type this, today, on Christmas, I find that I'm pretty happy just sitting here in my warm small apartment with my dog and cat resting.

More on them later.

I had to tell you the happiest day for me in a long time was when I did't have to submit my quarterly food stamp report. I simply filled in the 'no longer need assistance' part, and I was on my own. Totally on my own and it feels great.

Looking back I realize I rarely told anyone, sans a few close friends and family that I was even on food stamps. I felt low, trying to hide my bright yellow card as I paid for things at Trader Joes,  and even though I genuinely could use the help, I didn't want others in better situations than me to know that I was *that* low. Sure, many knew I was jobless, but going to a free clinic and getting food stamps low, nope.

It's only been a couple of months and I still have all my thrifty habits. I still look for the bargain, and I will not spend more than I need to on things that I need to get. The plus is I have been getting some things I *want* to get, and that's fun. I've been trying some of the newer vegan products out there, and many of them are a total fail. I'll be posting more on that too.

I'm also able to eat out more and try new places. I'm still cheap, so even the occasional treat out for us who are on assistance is good for your sanity if nothing else.

Speaking of eating out, for my birthday some friends took me to this quite amazing vegan diner type eatery called Doomies. They really do need a website.

I live about a mile from them and had never heard of them! Most vegan fare that you hear about is Asian leaning. Thats all fine and danny, but American food can hold a vegan slant too.

Behold!

Shrimp Cocktail 
Fried Chicken
I have to say, the skin on the 'chicken' was to die for!!
Yes, that is exactly what you think it is.
They had tons off sweets but I had been craving creme brûlée  for a loooooong time.
I mean, the food isn't for the health conscious. And why should all vegan food be healthy? We like to indulge too. The three of us had 2 sodas (I had hot tea), two appetizers, 3 dinners, 3 deserts, and 3 coffees. Total was about $80. For all of that, I think that's a good priced night out. Now that I have a job and this place being so close, I can tell, nay, know that they will know me be my first name soon. Like Norm from Cheers!

In closing I just want to say thanks to everyone who has emailed and talked with me and has shown interest in my little blog. I really appreciate. There will be tons more content to come, and I will still be posting from the food stamp perspective, so have no fear.

Hope your Holidays are great and lead to great opportunities!

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