Thanksgiving for vegan kids

21 Nov

With Thanksgiving looming, Silas and I have been reading a ton of books on the subject. Right off the bat, this went badly. He finally realized that people actually eat animals. That was a real bummer. It kind of sucks to have to teach your kid that this is something we have to just be chill about. We can’t hate people because they eat animals because truly they are just following social norms. This seems wrong to tell him, but I did anyway. I have flashbacks of Shae telling everyone how awful they were for killing the little animals, he went through a stage of being the obnoxious militant vegan that we are all made out to be. Except he was 3 and people totally listened to him, but you know, still probably not a good look.

Silas is only 4, so I try to just steer the conversation to the fact that we are vegan so we do not eat animals and how awesome that is that we choose to be nice to them! And Tofurky is so yummy! All happy and positive and let’s all just forget about the poor dead turkeys! (also feels wrong, but you know, it’s as much as he needs for the comprehension he has at this point)

So then we stumbled upon the comedy genre of children’s Thanksgiving stories which apparently means not eating turkeys. Hilarious idea, right! Ugh, whatever. These are more like dramatic stories with a heartwarming ending to us, so I’m happy. Turk and Runt was a good one about Turkeys who yearned to be the biggest and best so they would be “chosen” until they smart little brother, Runt, made them realize that people meant to kill & eat them. It wasn’t graphic at all and Silas enjoyed cheering them on.

This led to me hunting down Shae’s old copy of Dav Pilkey’s Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving.

Again, this is a “wacky” tale meant as humor, and to that I roll my eyes. This book was introduced to us by Shae’s kindergarten teacher in 2004. She did an entire unit on the book, then at the end, the kids went to the school’s turkey lunch. Yeah, I don’t know either. Shae was the only vegan in his super rural school, basically the only vegan in a sea of hunters. His teacher was by no means vegan, she just thought it was a cute book, but it meant a lot to Shae at the time. It showed him that other people think the way we do and that it’s okay to buck the normal traditions in the name of compassion. We must have read this book thousands of times over the years. Shae went on to reading all of Dav Pilkey’s other books and fell in love with him. He even dressed as Captain Underpants for character day at school in 2nd or 3rd grade. I’d like to post the picture, but you know, ruining his life and all that.

Of course, Silas dug it too. He was stoked to see the kids eating a vegetarian feast at the end with their turkey friends. We made turkeys afterwards and I asked him to fill in the blank afterwards from this lesson idea I found on pinterest. “Save a turkey, eat more ___________!”. He cracked me up by saying, “Food! They should eat actual food!”. YES. They totally should. Kids are kind of the best.

{Fun fact about Dav Pilkey: he wasn’t vegetarian when he wrote this book, but he is vegan now!}

As for the meaning of Thanksgiving, I have a real problem with celebrating white dudes killing off Native Americans and stealing their land. I just teach that we are celebrating gratitude and respect for Native Americans. I love this book so hard. We’ve read it everyday for 2 weeks now. Silas can’t get enough.

(Here’s the reading rainbow episode. I just found this and I’m so excited to share it with the kids.)

Oh and of course, what Thanksgiving is complete without Charlie Brown? NONE. So, get on that. We like to do a toast and popcorn feast while watching!

Silas keeps begging for “SO MANY TURKEYS” so we’ve been crafting them like no mans business. Starting to look like a little sanctuary around here.

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Nog taste- test

8 Nov

It’s super hard to believe that the holidays are coming but they are basically barreling towards us. I guess I better just accept it.

Since it looks like Silk isn’t selling their Pumpkin Spice flavor this year, which was Silas’ favorite thing ever, I bought him some big to try out. The only kind I could find was Soy Delicious Coconut Nog. We aren’t coconut milk drinkers, but what the heck? Can’t be that bad.

I’ve never been a Nog fan. That thickness just skeeves me right out. The flavor is good, but can’t get past that texture. Silas adores it though and was really excited about “Christmas Drink!”

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Vegan MoFo Day 31: Happy Halloween!

31 Oct

Day 31.
Halloween!

We went to a Halloween carnival that we’ve been taking Shae to since he was 3. A decade later, Shae decides to dress up as Silas’ favorite animal, a penguin. The mustache made it cooler I guess? Silas was a dinosaur, his brothers old costume, but fitting since he requests we read his dinosaur abc book to him every night.

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Mustache gone before we leave the parking lot…

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Then we spot people he knows…

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And next thing you know, Matt’s the penguin.  Shae did help Silas & his friend trick or treat, so he’s not too cool for us, just for the penguin costume.

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Here are the eye-less mummy dogs we made today.  Pretend they look more like this please.  I used biscuits instead of cresent rolls and ruined a few with giant blobs of ketchup as eyes.  But whatever, kids were into it.  Thanks, pinterest.

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Also:  Silas helped carve his first pumpkin today!  I have cute pictures of him doing it, but I’m just too damned tired.  Instead, blurry photo of him kissing and grinning and his new “happy” jack-o-lantern.  Happy Halloween!  And happy last day of mofo!  Went by in a hectic blur.  Maybe I’ll keep blogging this time.

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Vegan MoFo Day 30: Spooky Pancakes!

30 Oct

Day 30.

 

Turns out Pinterest actually makes me do things.  At first, I just pinned and stared at all the amazing, time-consuming, costly crafts that I know I’d never ever do and bemoaned my horribly lacking wardrobe.   But then I started making to do list boards and it has been so helpful to me!  My board for planning Silas’ 4th birthday party kept me so on track and everything I needed in one place.  It was so successful for me that I made one for each of the major upcoming holidays, Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas.   I narrowed things down as we went and didn’t force myself to accomplish everything that I had pinned for Halloween, but I did use any spare time we had to squeeze in a little holiday fun and I know the kids (especially Silas) really enjoyed it!  Definitely saved me a ton of time in the moment, looking for crafts or fun ideas.  I’m bumping a few pumpkin-y things to my thanksgiving board that I just didn’t have time for this month, but really, does it matter when we eat pumpkin cinnamon rolls?  NOPE.  Anytime and always, please.

I knew from the second I saw these spider pancakes that the kids would flip for them!  A squeeze bottle!  So smart!  I would have never thought of that and I see it being a reoccurring thing around here.  I did have trouble finding a squeeze bottle, but my mom found one for us.  I must have been looking in all the wrong places? Definitely work the effort to find one though!

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It’s super easy to draw with it!

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Silas’ brilliant addition was chocolate chip eyes on everything.  I like the way this kid thinks.  And you know, last year he hated chocolate chips!  Finally came to his senses.

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He also recommends eating them eyes first.

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Of course I needed pancakes too.  Obvs.

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The only issue I ran across with the squeeze bottle is how much air it put in the pancakes.  Not sure how I can fix that for next time?  Maybe a thicker batter?  I’ll figure it out eventually.

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Vegan MoFo Day 29: Mellow Mushroom

29 Oct

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Day 29.

Mellow Mushroom is the most vegan friendly place in town and it’s a great way to make veganism look normal and easy.   Their pizza is AMAZING and they have Daiya cheese, tempeh, and a few types of tofu on the menu.  Hoagies are great too, plus calzones ya’ll!  It’s an easy atmosphere, super kid-friendly, has tvs everywhere (because I guess “games” matter) and a bar with a huge list of craft beers, enough to keep everyone happy.
We were at a soccer tournament this weekend in Daphne, Alabama (not a hub of veganism at all) and our hotel was right near a Mellow Mushroom, so of course we had to go.  We ended up there celebrating a day of victories with a bunch of other soccer families and everyone seemed pleased.

NOTE:  Make sure you tell your server you don’t want butter or parmesan on anything!  Or it will be on everything!

Okay, these are Silas’ pretzels, they are kind of blah plain, but he’s 4 and they are amazing to him.  (Not pictured: my salad, our hummus/pita app or the pitchers of Sweetwater 420 the lucky parents were enjoying)

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Shae doesn’t like me posting his picture all over the internets anymore, because it will ruin his life or something.  So that’s why it looks like he doesn’t exist sometimes.  I’m just  saving the life-ruining for when he truly deserves it.
Here he is (sort of) is eating a Daiya cheese and BBQ tofu pizza.  He was in love with this thing and I don’t blame him.  I wanted to dive into that mound of Daiya myself!  YUM.

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Matt and I shared a large Mega Veggie with Daiya and let me tell you, that was a mistake.  That thing was HUGE.  So many veggies.  We had half of it leftover!

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When Silas got tired of making the big kids gush over how cute he is, he stared at the stuff hanging from the ceiling, until….

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THIS happened.
Now, if you knew Silas, you’d know this is 100% out of character.  He does not sleep when he can play or interact.  If there is attention to be had, he’s there, doing something adorable.  He is not a fun waster.

But I guess we finally wore this kid out.  Who knew.

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We left with a pile of teeny pizza boxes to fill our tiny little hotel fridge.

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And so glad that we did!  ‘Cause HELLS YEAH BREAKFAST!

I fashioned a pizza box into a tiny microwave sized plate with manicure scissors.  I make shit happen when properly motivated.  Silas is not impressed.

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Then we were off for another day of soccer.  Shae’s team is a first year travel team who went from a hot mess to a second place team (in overtime and PK shots!  SO CLOSE!).

I promise Silas is drinking OJ, not coffee.  I would not like to see caffeine in his crazy little body, ever.

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Vegan MoFo Day 28: Moe’s

28 Oct

Day 28.

My favorite place to find super fast, but decent food while on the road is Moe’s. Their tofu is awesome, plus guacamole and cilantro. I don’t need to convince you further, do I?

Plus, their burritos are the size of a small child’s head.

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Vegan MoFo Day 27: Halloween cracker spiders!

27 Oct

Day 27.

Cracker Spiders! We make these every year, but this year Silas made them himself! He’s so old, ya’ll.

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