Happy Foster Friday!
- 5 days ago
I am SOOO lucky and am super excited for the Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend!!
Source: the-thehumanexperienceThis past February we launched our I Am The Human Experience campaign to get people to share their human experience so we could showcase the diversity of the human experience and queer identity. Ou…
This past February we launched our I Am The Human Experience campaign to get people to share their human experience so we could showcase the diversity of the human experience and queer identity. Our campaign is year-round, but during February anyone who submitted a human experience piece was entered into a contest to win 1 of 5 Joss Whedon or lesbian themed DVD sets, as well as Two Platinum Passes to Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend.
Yesterday, we tallied all of the submissions, put everybody into a raffle and picked out the winner for the two Platinum Passes to The Dinah Shore, and the winner is …
drum roll please …
The Winner of the Two Platinum Passes to Club Skirts Dinah Shore Weekend
Sarah Audet! Congratulations Sarah!
F@#K Plastic Bags!
The most amazing thing happened to me at CVS today. As always, when I was checked out I told the women I did not want a bag and her response made me ecstatic!
“I do not have a plastic bag to give you” she said, as she pointed to the empty rack below her, where the single use bags once hung.
It’s super exciting to see the ban on single use plastic bags in Los Angeles finally in effect! This will really reduce the amount of plastics that are going into Southern California waterways and the environment!
- 6 days ago
Q: I’m interested in becoming a vegan, but embarrassed to say that my diet has pretty much consisted of meat and dairy at least twice a day. I’m totally lost on what a balanced and yummy vegan diet should include. I want this to be part of a lifestyle change and not just something I say I’m gonna do, but never commit to. I don’t want my daughter to have the same eating habits as I’ve had and I might as well start now, right? Where do I even start?! I definitely need guidance.
A: You’re headed in the right direction! If you keep in mind veganism is a lifestyle change and that change usually happens slowly over time, you wont panic yourself or have any doubts. Slowly your body will detox from all the toxins in your system from the meat and dairy, and you will mentally and physically start to feel amazing! I just celebrated my 1 year anniversary being vegan and will never look back! It only took me 20 years of being a vegetarian to finally become a vegan, I am proof change can be slow, but it’s worth it. If you want to read more about my personal path to plant based check out my blog post: http://theplurvegan.tumblr.com/post/74403092916/my-one-year-vegan-anniversary-evolution-to-vegan, Here are some tips on being vegan and transitioning your diet to be more plant based, in no particular order:
1. Eating a bag of vegan cookies is just as bad a regular cookies. Just because it’s vegan doesn’t mean its healthy…. Yes, Oreo’s are vegan, just in case you were wondering. The Trader Joe’s vegan cookies and rice crispy treats are amazing! A must try! Of course I had to start out my tips with cookies, vegan food is fun! Check out our vegan gingerbread house from this past December as all the candy is vegan! http://theplurvegan.tumblr.com/post/73462566115/vegan-gingerbread-house
2. Read Skinny Bitch by Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin. Its quick read that covers everything you will need to know about a plant based lifestyle. I can’t recommend this more! A couple holidays back, I give it to all my friends, family and coworkers (they have a guys version too) and it was received very well by meat eaters and non alike! You will learn something every time you read or reread it!
3. Buy Skinny Bitch book of Vegan Swaps. Great resource for all general alternative product options, but I think you will really like the meat alternatives and faux meat products section.
4. Read the label. You would be really surprised what they put in food. Personally, if its made on machinery that has touched eggs, dairy, and such I still consider it vegan. Trader Joes recently changed manufacturing locations and many of the boxes now say made on machinery that touched… but the ingredients are to me still vegan. I also consider white sugar and some honey vegan. Again its like the machinery, the process is not vegan but the product is. I only eat honey that I buy from bee hoteling or my local farmer’s market bee keeper who treats the bees as a pet. Reading labels can be made easier with technology, especially thanks to smart phones. These days all you have to do is scan a barcode and the app will tell you if its vegan: Animal free, Is it Vegan, Cruelty Free, and there’s also a Veg Kickstart app. Speaking of apps, check out happy cow too. great for local restaurants. Another great restaurant guide is: http://www.cok.net/wp-content/uploads/literature/VegLosAngelesFall2013.pdf
5. Bring snacks. You never know when you’ll be hungry and need “fast” food. Hummus and carrots come in handy…. or those individual serving nut packets.
6. Make the easy swaps. Non dairy milk has like a zillion of options. If you don’t like one keep trying (did you know at Trader Joes if you don’t like a product they will refund your money within 7 days, so go ahead and try something new)… soy milk, almond milk, rice milk, coconut milk and so on. I know it not a really the healthiest option, but get the vanilla variety for dairy drinkers as it makes everything taste like sugared cereal and everyone loves dessert. Its always an option to start flavored and then switch to plain once you get ues to it. No one’s judging, give yourself whatever you want! You’re in transition, transitions are always hard, but in time it will all come to you! Swap your butter for earth balance. And know in a pinch margarine is actually vegan. Swap your cream cheese for tofutti cream cheese or Trader Joes vegan option. Daiya cheese also has some good cheese options. They have a yummy shredded cheese mozzarella too! Nut cheese are amazing!!! And last on to meat swaps. Get one of everything that looks good to you! Feel free to keep trying. Faux products have come a long way since the cheese that melts like plastic to the faux meats that turn white when you cook them. If you don’t like something its okay. Just keep trying as they are a lot of options out there and more every day!
7. Lots of food you currently eat might already be vegan and you just don’t know it. Also, packaging lies. If it says extra buttery popcorn, it probably doesn’t actually have any butter in it…vegan! Check out this list: http://www.peta.org/living/food/accidentally-vegan/
8. Fight ignorance and negativity with education and tolerance. You are taking the high road with each and every vegan choice you make! You are not just thinking about yourself; you have compassion and respect for animals, the planet and for future generations. Personally, I believe too strongly in peace, equality, and non violence to not be a vegan. Once I open my eyes to the truth, I morally could not just be a vegetarian any more. However most people are totally unaware of what they eat and question veganism because they have no idea what it really is. Honestly for a long time I thought everyone would want to feed themselves healthy, clean foods that are packed with nutrients and make their minds and bodies strong. Unfortunately that isn’t always the case, but I feel strongly that everyone should have a primarily plant based diet. I understand that a vegan lifestyle is not for everyone, but adding more and more plant based foods into your diet will only benefit you and the world around you in the long run. I have friends who eat lots of fast food and then ask me where I get my protein. This always baffles me as the person standing in front of you, who I’m sure hasn’t had all their veggies for the day or any truly nutritious food, is questioning protein. Please know, its not all about protein, and there are plenty of plant based proteins out there. Here’s a post if you want to know more: http://theplurvegan.tumblr.com/post/65388205982/q-a-sources-of-plant-based-proteins
9. Know your pal Google is always there. Most ingredients can be substituted with a vegan alternative and lots have more than one. Just ask Google your question and you will be so surprised at how quickly you can find all the info you need. Vegan recipes are plentiful and there is lots of vegan outreach/education material available. (not all pertinent, but check out these links: http://theplurvegan.tumblr.com/reference-links )
10. Check out these other resources:
Happy Foster Friday! These cuties are all available for adoption and looking for the perfect Forever families!
Image 1: Beagle Freedom Project has lots of beagle looking for fosters and ultimately a fantastic forever family! Would you be interested fostering a laboratory Beagle??
Image 2: I’m Lucy, a swingin’ senior hound of just 11 years young looking for a foster parent or forever family. I must admit, I do want to be Queen! I mean, really, I deserve to be Royalty. I am crate trained and housebroken. I have a lovely education in obedience and am happy to let you groom me. I’m incredibly lovable but also very independent. I’m not shy at all and would love to get belly rubs all day long! Check out my profile on Basset Hound Rescue, you’re gonna LOVE ME! http://www.bassethoundrescue.org/hounds/lucy/
Image 3 & 4: Interested in fostering or adopting one of Kitty Bungalow’s Charm School for Wayward Cats students??? Kitty Bungalow’s teachers work one-on-one with each student, providing them with a well-rounded socialization education. We match our kittens into the best possible homes predicated on their personalities and your needs. Check out these cuties at http://www.kittybungalow.org/ourstudents.html
Image 5: Timmy was living on the streets for months with what everyone thought was a broken leg. Fortunately, Stray Cat Alliance bailed him out and took him to a kind veterinarian. Timmy ‘s true condition was revealed when the vet said it was not 2 broken legs, but instead a pellet lodged in his spine that made it close to impossible for him to walk.Imagine this sweet angel fending for himself, dragging his hind legs on dangerous city streets! This cutie is doing better and looking for a forever home! to learn more about Timmy’s story: http://www.adoptapet.com/pet/4138313-los-angeles-california-cat
Image 6: Dakota is a sweet, loving, playful 2 year old scamp…and handsome! He likes boxes and places to hide to nap. http://www.adoptapet.com/pet/10392583-los-angeles-california-cat
Image 7: Gordon is one awesome dude. He likes dogs of all sizes and even lived with a little fluffy one. He also lived with children. He is great on leash and housebroken. He is pretty mellow but has a fun side as all boxers do. Gordon is a wonderful family dog looking for a wonderful family. For more on Gordon check out http://www.boxer-rescue-la.com/dogs/gordon_jan14.html Boxer Rescue of LA is bring many more lovable boxers to WorldFest in May!
Image 8: Happy Foster Friday! Bailey is a friendly outgoing girl who does not seem to overstep her boundaries. She is active but by no means hyper-active. She is the perfect blend of experience and playfulness. For more on Bailey and her other friends at Boxer Rescue of LA, visit http://www.boxer-rescue-la.com/dogs/bailey_feb14.html
- 1 week ago
Happy Foster Friday!
Image 1: ”Will you be my foster??? It’s Foster Friday and I need a foster mom or dad!” Harvey is good with dogs and kids, he’s house an crate trained, and walks well on leash! If you are interested in fostering or adopting Harvey check out his page on Basset Hound Rescue of Southern California http://www.bassethoundrescue.org/hounds/harvey/
Image 2: Smokey is available for adoption thru Boxer Rescue of LA!! Smokey is like the lovable wildfire mascot bear that reminds us to not play with matches. He is kind of goofy and goes with the flow. He is playful with other dogs. He currently plays with humans like they were a dog so older kids are best. He currently has a bit of a hand and foot fetish which we are working on redirecting. Smokey is happy to please and eager to learn. His long natural tail is always going a hundred miles an hour. Smokey wants to be your teddy bear. http://www.boxer-rescue-la.com/dogs/smokey_feb13.html
Image 3: Betty is just a darling little girl - we think she looks like a 1940’s movie star! She’s between 1 and 2 years old. She gets along with other cats just fine and likes people too!! Check out Betty’s adoption profile with Stray Cat Alliance: http://www.adoptapet.com/pet/10157551-los-angeles-california-cat
- 2 weeks ago
I am an activist, artist, animal lover, bi, daughter, designer, dancer, dreamer, environmentalist, femme, foster mom, feminist, friend, gay, health nut, lesbian, lover, LEED accredited professional, optimist, photographer, raver, sister, snowflake, tree hugger, unicorn, unique, woman, vegetarian, vegan, and volunteer …but first and foremost, I am a human being.
I am nothing like the 7,000,000,000 other people in this world, but at the same time am everything like them. A living, breathing, feeling, individual who is labeled and judged by society, the world around me and by myself; only to bring us closer together and yet push us farther from each other all at the same time. A give and take of love and hate.
I dream of the utopian society: To coexist simultaneously in peace with all living beings without conflict or negativity. To unconditionally feel great affection and love towards all fellow living beings and to freely offer friendship regardless of race, sex, sexual orientation, ideals, appearance, background, or species. To unite together thru the experience of life and the environment around us, while fostering a sense of connection and community, as at minimum, we are all living, breathing and feeling beings. To respect who you are without any expectations and to allow others to do the same while creating a sense of pride, courage and honor of oneself, others and the environment. Peace Love Unity Respect. PLUR.
I know this world I dream of will never exist, but that does not mean I cannot take positive steps in my life towards my utopia. I will fight for what I believe in, even if I stand alone! I believe strongly in equality, diversity and transparency, but that list above is none of that, just labels and judgments of me; words that mean nothing without truth behind them.
We are all evolving as individuals, the words used at any one time to describe us are constantly changing as we learn about ourselves and experience the world around us. It took me a very long time to accept myself for who I am, even to start to figure out who I am. As if you cannot accept yourself, you can not even begin to truly figure out who you are. It wasn’t until recently that I stepped away from “the path” to say, ‘what the hell am I doing, this isn’t me?’ Just because you are told this is how things go doesn’t mean we are all on that same path. We are all different and we should celebrate our differences, our uniqueness and empower ourselves to be who we want to be.
You know “The path”, the life that leads up to the career, husband, house, dog, cat, 2.5 kids and beyond… happiness, the perfect life or happily ever after. Yes, I graduated with a BFA in Interior Design and I am actually working in my field, at an Interior Architecture firm as a Designer. I almost had the husband and kids too… but that’s when I stepped back.
I had to admit to myself it wasn’t me. Everyone around me already knew, and the people who didn’t, I went to great lengths to hide it from. I was in a straight relationship, I was engaged and wanted children someday, and still do. I played the part of straight, but I’m not. I’m not bi either. I’m a lesbian.
Just because I want to marry a women shouldn’t change anything, but it changed my entire world. I could finally accept myself and move on. I’ve found out so much about myself these last few years. Between being out and proud, and becoming a vegan my lifestyle will never be the same and I love it!
I became a vegan for a multitude of reasons, other than just wonderful food. For me it was a lifestyle decision of personal preference and taste to begin with. It took me almost 20 years to open my eyes to the truth, and once i did, I morally could not just be a vegetarian any more. I have compassion and respect for animals, the planet and for future generations. I believe too strongly in peace, equality, and non violence to not be a vegan.
I don’t want anyone to feel like they don’t have a voice, to be mistreated and discriminated against. In a way, i feel like i did it too myself and now that i see what i did for so long, it gives me the strength to fight for myself and others, most of who go thru way more pain and suffering that I did or probably even will ever.
Human and animal rights are a huge issues for me! There are so many of us out there who don’t have basic rights just because of our sexual orientation, who we love, whether we are male or female, our species or breed….
Last year I marched in the West Hollywood PRIDE Parade with Mercy for Animals under the banner “No one is free when others are oppressed” promoting equality for all! Since then Prop 8 has been repealed, NoH8! And DOMA has gone down, but H8 still exists in place all over this country and the world. Love will overcome hate, I have faith in positive change. Change is inevitable, its like death and taxes…. If you fight for positive change you can only make this world a better place, one step at a time.
I really do feel that every little bit counts in trying for positive change. It’s a sad to say, but bigotry is all around us: negative, stereotypes and labels. We shall overcome and love will prevail.
Just the other day, I spoke at the Pasadena City Council against the Breed Specific Legislation (BSL) that they were going to make motion on. They currently have tabled an ordinance regarding spaying and neutering of of ALL dogs and cats over the age of 4 months due to the pending canvas of the Pasadena Humane Society. As a volunteer at the No Kill Los Angeles Animal Shelter and Best Friends Shelter I know all too well about how many animals are looking for forever home and feel this is the right thing to do. However, while this ordnance is pending one of the Council Member tried to specifically target out pit bull and pit bull like dogs sneaking in BSL.
For me, they made it personal. This is discrimination and a rights issue coming from a city who has a large population of people who know how it feels to be discriminate against and stereotyped.
Good Evening Council Members,
I’m sorry for being so nervous. I am not one to speak in public, but my personal discomfort is nothing compared to the enormity of this issue and I feel strongly against discrimination.
I wanted to start off by congratulating you and the city of Pasadena on being ranked the second “Gayest City in America” for 2014 by The Advocate magazine a few weeks back.
This is a great honor as it shows you as city believe strongly in equality, diversity and compassion towards all. We all know how it feels to be bullied because we are different, but together we shall over come discrimination, hate and stereotypes.
However I feel these strives for equality are diminished by legislation that singles out a dog based specifically on his /her breed and/or appearance as this is nothing more than bigotry and the canine equivalent of racial profiling.
You are stereotyping a particular breed and creating a false sense of fear and paranoia. Pit bulls and pit bull looking dogs are not scary and aggressive, it’s a negative stereotype given by the few mean people who are abusing these poor dogs to make a buck or because they just don’t care about another’s live…
We need to look at the positives, which also are the majority of the cases. Most of the pit bull population is living in a home as a loving family member. Personally I would not bring any person or animal into my home that I would not feel safe with.
But I DO bring pit bull fosters into my house to live with my cat JackJack, roommate and myself. JackJack is my child and I would not do anything to put him in harms way.
I would like to introduce you to JackJack’s loving foster siblings who have enriched our life over this past year:
Erin (Lilo), Megan (Vanilla Infinity Love), Ollie (Qwerx), Cupcake (Zoey), Petey, Biscuit, Gabby, Teddy, and Elvis.
I couldn’t have asked for better behavior from any of them. They had nothing but love for my family and I.
My community of queer, vegan, activist, and freedom fighters is small, even in this huge urban sprawl of a city, but we are here! Recently the organizer of my LA LGBTQ Vegan meet up group stepped down, and after much deliberation I decided to take on the roll of organizer. No matter how shy i am, I couldn’t let my small group of like individuals go….
I want our diversity to stand out, a forum for our community, where we can openly express ourselves and empower each other. I’ve received several emails from new members expressing that they do not know a single other LGBTQ vegan and are excited to join our group. I might me super nervous about heading this all up, but i feel like i cant say no.
But why am I sharing all this, this jumble of emotions and experience that make up me. Well, to show you we are all unique and that I am way more than my labels and judgments you have towards me. I am a person, and this is my human experience.
With advocacy, education and celebration huge steps towards positive change is made. I celebrate my diversity thru my blog, The PLUR Vegan. To read more obout my adventures and experiences, visit: http://theplurvegan.tumblr.com/
What is The Human Experience? It is the validity in your story and the story of 7,000,000,000 other people in this world. How do you put a label on being human? You don’t. You open your heart and listen. This is the foundation of our publication, The Human Experience, and we want to hear your story. Join us in spreading the diversity of the human experience with the world by sharing your story. Find out how to share your story with the world.