“What I” Wednesday: Back To Business

December 6th, 2011 - filed under: The Food » Food Styles

Vacation is great and all, but I must admit . . . as much as I love holidays, I can’t help but also love the feeling of getting back into my own kitchen. Of getting back to business! My business, which is making clean, simple, healthy food that leaves me feeling nourished and energized.

This Monday marked the end of our winter adventure, and it was a day of errands, catching up, replenishing, tidying, puttering, and mountains and mountains of laundry. Think of me what you will (geek?), but I love those sorts of days! Oh yes, Type A with a capital “A”, right here folks.

The day went something like this:

Coffee and Breakfast

I was not particularly hungry in the morning. That may or may not have had something to do with the 1/2 pint of coconut ice cream I’d eaten as a midnight snack the night before . . .

I made a fresh batch of fortified almond milk while the French Roast brewed.

I also put together a breakfast plate for Waits: oatmeal with cinnamon and goji berries, black beans with nutritional yeast, two crackers with miso as spread, and a small handful of sunflower seeds. Espresso cup of almond milk on the side.

We took our goods upstairs and got down to cleaning. I sort of got lost in laundry-folding-and-furniture-dusting land, and before I knew it, it was past 11.

My tummy was just starting to grumble, but the boydogs were rarin’ for their walk, so I grabbed a quick forkful of kimchi (not pictured) and a handful of home-roasted pumpkin seeds, and we hit the road.

Please send a good thought for Mr Harley up there. He has a pretty massive tumor on his leg, but we’re having a surgical consult soon and I’m staying optimistic!


As soon as we got home, Waits and I split an orange while I unpacked the groceries. Oranges are such a winter treat! It was icy cold outside (see?) and the citrus is sort of like fake sun. Am I the only one who feels like that?

Anyway, Waits was into it:

After that we got all cleaned up and snuggled into bed for nap time. He was out pretty quickly, and I high-tailed it to the kitchen to appease my now-loudly-rumbling tummy.

Leftover Lebanese (1/2 stewed chickpeas and 1/2 lentil + rice mixture, all covered liberally in nutritional yeast)

And black tea (from my Fair Trade sampler bag) (it was really good, really light on tannins!)

Baby Lunch

When Waits woke up around 3, I fixed him up another little tray. This one had the last of the Lebanese leftover lentil + rice mixture, the last of the black beans from breakfast, and 4 kalamata olives. For some reason he is totally stuck on olives right now, oh toddlers!

Afternoon Juice

Greens for running our afternoon errands (which included mailing out the first round of Bonzai Bags, woo-hoo!). This boy is a serious, serious juice-aholic (and makes his mama so proud!)


I brewed a mild cup of green tea to keep me warm while I made dinner. I didn’t care for this flavor, though I had the “Yerba Maté Mint” today, and it was really good.

Dinner. Simple. Soooo delicious. Quinoa, black eyed peas, and broccoli, covered in my raw tahini sauce. That’s it!

But just FYI, I added a ton more sauce, and then when I finished this bowl I went back and did it all over again. SO GOOD.

Later, after Waits was fast asleep and all the cleaning was done, I slipped into the bath with a glass of wine and a book. It was . . . perfect.


This comical What-I-Wore-Wednesday is brought to you by the numbers 3 and 0, and the letters C, O, L, and D. This is what I wear these days to take Waits out for our night walk. We actually stay pretty roasty-toasty!

  • Black tank top (not pictured) and green plaid shirt: thrifted
  • Loose fit skinny jeans: secondhand
  • Damian’s hoodie: Patagonia, who has earned our everlasting love and devotion for their pioneering eco-conscious business practices, their awesome vegan offerings, and their impeccable quality.
  • Brown legwarmers: ages ago on sale at Urban Outfitters
  • Pink Chucks: secondhand (I bought the black laces long ago)
  • Black hat: acquired somehow, maybe from a roommate?
  • Grey scarf: Damian’s, ancient

What’s your favorite go-to, super simple, yet always satisfying, meal?

  • Lou

    A good book and a glass of wine in the bath is indeed… perfect. Love the idea of making fortified almond milk, brilliant. Super simple meal would have to be a baked sweet potato with tahini, nutritional yeast, wholegrain mustard and a splash of apple cider vingear… so comforting :)

  • Fanny G (Northernveg)

    Cabbage pancakes with lingonberry jam. Whenever I don’t have time or energy too cook, that is what I make and it always tastes good as well.

  • darlene

    I wanted to let you know that I pre-ordered Rawesomely Vegan. It made me happy to do so. I have Mike’s other cookbook and I love it but the index really stinks. I know your new one will be my fav Raw Cookbook. I hope they come out with a kindle version too. I’ve been following your blog since I went raw about 6 months ago. I love it, esp seeing what you feed your cutie Waits. I have a 12 and a 14 year old. The 12 year old is a veg. I wish they tried 1/4 of the stuff Waits eats.

    The other day you mentioned oil pulling. I started doing that when I first went raw and then fell out of practice. It was laziness on my part because I was using coconut oil and in the fall in New England it turns solid which makes it harder to use. A few weeks ago I developed sensitivity to cold and heat in my teeth. So I am oil pulling again, this time with sesame oil. I have also eliminated citrus as I suspect adding lemon or lime juice to my daily smoothies and salads may be the problem. Do you have any experience with teeth sensitivity?

    The other day I made liquid facial soap in my Blendtec from a solid neutogena bar, is that vegan?, so I can use it in the shower without having it melt. It worked well and seemed like I was channeling you. Keep the good stuff coming.

  • http://twitter.com/keephealthstyle Laura Agar Wilson

    I love the sound of that dinner, so simple but delicious! You have also just made me add leg warmers to my Christmas list, they look awesome with your converse :-)

  • http://www.parsnipsandpears.blogspot.com Ami @ parsnips and pears

    soup would have to be my super easy always satisfying meal…. I just grab a bunch of random stuff I have in my fridge and cupboard that day, throw it in the crock pot and let it simmer!

  • http://brokencookiesdontcount.wordpress.com/ Fran@BCDC

    Everything looks tasty! I’ve been drinking a lot more tea throughout the day, too as it gets colder. I’ve really been enjoying it!

  • http://healthifulbalance.blogspot.com/ Shannon (Healthiful Balance)

    I love your legwarmers! I need to get some :)

  • Serenity

    The free trade sampler was AMAZING! The products tasted and smelled how food is supposed too. When I make the coffee, everyone in the house can smell it. It’s like a Folgers commercial. I don’t get that with my regular brew. I’m sold on these brands!

  • Francine Maglione

    Love the night walk outfit haha. What does nutritional yeast taste like? Does it alter the taste of the food like a seasoning?

  • Heather

    super cute :) i had pink Chucks back in the day….6th grade i believe.
    LOVE the older post you have of making baby knee pads out of old socks. i’m a nanny and the little sprout is gonna be crawling soon and they only have hardwood floors. So, i’m totally gonna make him some :) GREAT IDEA!
    Also, one of my new fave shows is Portlandia and i die laughing every time i hear “The dream of the 90s is alive in Portland.” oh.em.gee. SO funny-”where young people go to retire.”
    also, had a question-how is the homemade toilet “paper” situation going? been considering something along those lines lately :)

  • dakota

    Hey I absolutely love your blog, I especially love all the food you post. We are raising our son vegan he is almost 17 months but it can be difficult to feed a toddler some days they love one thing some days they hate it. Anyway we have another on the way and I love coming to your site to look at food ideas for Ronin. Keep em coming!

  • http://windycityvegan.wordpress.com Monika {windycityvegan}

    Sushi rice (the stickier, the better!) seasoned with nutritional yeast, s/p, onion and garlic powder and miso (after it has cooled a little, of course) and topped with shitakes that have been seasoned with toasted sesame oil and gf tamari. Sometimes a handful of roasted chickpeas are thrown on top. Mine also gets a very sizable dose of chili flakes or sauce. It’s basically our house version of the proverbial chicken soup.

  • http://windycityvegan.wordpress.com Monika {windycityvegan}

    Oh, and I love your leg warmers! I just stocked up at a clearance/textile sale and have arm and leg warmers to pretty much last me a lifetime. Not that that will deter me from knitting up a few more pairs.

  • http://becominglessofjes.com Jes @ Becoming Less of Jes

    Your little guy is so cute! All the eats look yummy. Happy WIAW! =)

  • http://vegetalion.blogspot.com Sarah P

    Aw, the picture of Waits sitting with his juice makes him look so grown up! Look at those little long legs! It’s so amazing when they start to look like kids instead of babies.

  • Jessica @ Whatwouldjessicaeat?

    Everything looks great….your pictures are beautiful!

  • alex

    hi sayward, i want to send my good thoughts to your family and especially your pup. My own doggie from childhood lived with a considerable tumor on his leg for years and it didn’t diminish his quality of life at all… we got 15 love filled years with him. By the way, I get such a kick out of your outfits because I personally dress in exactly the same pieces… second hand flannel shirts, legwarmers, hats from who-knows-where… you would approve.

  • Meghan

    What manner of Waits-wearing-device are you using?

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    I’m all Ergo, all the time now (but still love the Moby and Babyhawk for infants!). I think from like 8-12 months, into infinity (I know people who wear their 4 year olds!) the Ergo is friggin’ awesome. It’s basically a backpack for a kid, sooo strong and comfy. But for the little tinies, I think it’s not the best choice.

    Just my 2 cents!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Thank you so much alex. We were leaving the tumor alone because it’s non-malignant, but it seems to be growing faster that expected. It’s getting big enough now that it’s going to start interfering with day-to-day doggie stuff, so we unfortunately do have to do something. =(

    Anyway, yay to somebody else who dresses like me! To be totally honest, I’m pretty insecure about posting my outfits, because I know my sense of “style” is . . . *ahem* . . . unique. Trendy, I am not. But at least I have a lot of fun with it!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Damian and I are constantly looking at each other and saying “Where did this little boy come from??” He’s really maturing so fast right now, it’s crazy!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    OMG yum!

  • http://mylessseriouslife.blogspot.com/ Sara @my less serious life

    i absolutely adore this picture of you and your son. so great…

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Aw, thanks! And yay for vegan bebes!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    I love that show!

    The tp is going okay. I still do it . . . when I remember. Reaching for the paper is just such a habit! But I don’t stress it, I do cloth when I can and I feel good about that. =)

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Nutritional yeast is somewhere between “cheesy” and “nutty” and “savory” and “like nothing else you’ve ever tasted”. I adore it and am quite addicted. But, I think it can be a bit of an acquired taste.

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    I love hearing this! So glad you’re enjoying it. Which was your favorite tea type?

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal
  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    I pretty much live in them all winter long. Love!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Aw, thanks darlene! I’m getting excited, it’s coming out so soon (seems like all of a sudden!)

    I have been doing the oil pulling with sesame, which is fine unless it tries to creep down my throat – then it’s a bit gross, haha. But totally doable! My teeth have been a bit sensitive lately, I think from a combination of factors, so I’m curious to see if the oil pulling helps. I’m investigating a lot of oral care options right now, so I’m sure I’ll have lots to write about. =)

    I’m not sure if Neutrogena is vegan. It’s probably been tested on animals at some point, but other than that I’d have to see the ingredients list. Do you remember the specific product name?

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Sweet potatoes with tahini is soooo good.

  • Michelle

    you guys are too cute! i keep meaning to comment to see if you’ve heard of the chemex coffee maker…have you? we used to be huge coffee people and then we had to give it up because it was making our bodies horribly acidic and we we’re getting sick more often (we almost never get sick!). but we recently shared a taste of coffee at a friends house and seriously felt like it was our first time drinking coffee ever. the flavor was so clear and the acidity seemed lower than we had previously experienced. we did a little research and just ordered the 6 cup chemex a couple of weeks ago. we’re in love with it! we even take it with us when we’re staying over night in phoenix (just 2 hours away). i just keep thinking its something you might be interested in checking out if you haven’t already. ;)

  • Becky

    Here’s to hoping Mr. Harley’s tumor is benign. One of my labs has a tumor inside her thigh, but the vet says it is just fat inside. It doesn’t seem to bother her – she just turned 9.

  • Sam

    Hope Harley’s going to be OK! One of the dogs I walk is older (9) and his owner and I describe him as “lumpy,” but all his bumps are benign and luckily don’t interfere with day-to-day stuff. My go-to simple and satisfying meals are either: sweet potatoes, onions, and red peppers, all seasoned up with olive oil, salt, pepper and paprika and roasted til they’re brown on the edges, or my version of fried rice: brown rice with tons of veggies and garlic and tamari, all sauteed together til it’s steaming. Yummmm.

  • Lisa

    I started reading your blog for vegan cooking info but I find myself looking forward to reading for the smiles. You crack me up almost everyday! Thank you for sharing!!

  • Rea

    My condolences for poor Harley Hoo, hope he feels better extra soon! God, I can’t BELIEVE how big Waits is. I remember when you just announced that you were FIVE months pregnant!!! By the way, I slipped into the olive thing at Waits’ age. . .and never grew out of it! No matter how gross my husband thinks it is! ;)

  • Annie

    I hope Harley gets better, give him lots of loves!
    Book, bath and wine = heavenly. We don’t have a bath at our house (boo!), but we will when we move next week! Wooh!

    My fallout winter warmer is my mum’s carrot and lentil soup. It’s just mirepoix sauteed + tomatoes + rosy red lentils + bay + oregano + salt and pepper + chilli _ big chunks of carrot. It’s so damn simple, but so ‘warmly nourishing’ without being all heavy and causing a food baby belly like some winter food does. And because re lentils take way less time to cook, mum used to knock it up after work in like 25 minutes.
    She would just rinse rosy red lentils really well, rather than soaking them, to prevent them from becoming all mooshy.

    Right now though, it’s summer here, and I’m loving water + cucumber + sugar snap + mint salad. Best.

  • http://windycityvegan.wordpress.com Monika {windycityvegan}

    LOVE chemex-brewed coffee! Have you used a hemp (or other reusable) filter with a chemex? The only thing holding me back from buying one for myself is the filters. One of my favorite coffee shops around here brews with a chemex, which is how I get my fix.

  • http://www.tiedyefiles.com Kaitlyn@TheTieDyeFiles

    I absolutely agree, citrus is like sunshine! We finally got some real sunshine this week. Also, clementines smell like Christmas. Stuffed sweet taters are my simple go-to meal!

  • Annie

    Haha, *watermelon. Water salad sounds awfully bland.

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    I was just reading your blog (WIAW) last night and saw your “clementines taste like Christmas”. So sweet! =)

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    I knew what you meant. ;-D

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    One of my earliest memories is of sitting on the kitchen counter making burritos with my mom, putting black olives on my fingers. I’m an olive-lover for life, too!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Aw,your welcome. I’m so glad you like it!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Thanks for the doggie well-wishes. His tumor is “benign”, but it’s just growing really fast. But he’s a tough dude, I know we’ll be able to handle it!

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Yeah, it’s benign, it’s just *big*. But it’s great to hear about so many people who have gone through the same thing with their own pooches. Very comforting. =)

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Haven’t tried it yet, but you have definitely piqued my curiosity. I’ll look into it, thanks!

  • Kelly H

    I am always so impressed by your diet and even more impressed and amazed by the fact that Waits eats this way too…happily! We need more vegan babies with creative, healthy, enironmental and compassionate mommies like you!

  • Kelly H

    PS. I will likely follow your blog for as long as you write it. It will bring me great joy to see where you go, what you do and to watch Waits grow up and see what he becomes. :o)

  • http://bonzaiaphrodite.com/ Sayward Rebhal

    Thank you so much Kelly, these comments mean so much to me. Thank you!!!