33 [Little] Things I Love At Age 33

January 22nd, 2014 - filed under: Furthermore » Inspiration

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It’s my birthday! Yay! Today I turn 33 years old – solidly into my thirties and so dang happy to be here. I thought I’d celebrate the occasion by sharing a collection of Little Loves. The Ultimate Love List, if you will. In no particular order and excluding the big stuff, here’s 33 mini magic miracles that are making me smile:

1. Nettle Infusions. Wahoo! I finally, finally found fresh nettles at a Farmer’s Market here in SB! I used to drink infusions weekly back in P-town, but haven’t found the fresh stuff here. Now, over a year later, I’m back on the dark green goodness and it’s got me feeling GREAT!

2. Podcasts. It’s funny, because 2013 was this amazing year of music. But since 2014 began, it’s like a switch was flipped. I’m back on the podcast train and filling my head with all sorts of fantastic things. Brain exercise. Feels good.

3. Gluten-free vegan donuts, er, Fonuts! I get to eat them for my birthday. I am EXCITED.

4. Vietnamese curry noodle soup. I had it for lunch today, it is like crack and I can’t stop. Best soup ever!

5. Finding my groove on campus. Finding my favorite spot for tea, the best routes and little footpaths, my nooks for quiet and my favorite view of the ocean. Feeling like it’s my place again.


6. Parasites! I studied them in undergrad and I know it sounds weird to most people, but I just. freaking. love. this group of organisms. Now I’m back in the lab doing a master’s in evolution, and I was immediately handed a project (!!!) looking at the evolution of . . . parasites! Couldn’t be happier. Seriously, don’t know how I got so lucky.

I know I’m weird.

7. Musical Theatre. Speaking of being a weirdo, I’m also a super musical theatre geek. And for my birthday I get to see The Book Of Mormon at my very FAVORITE Los Angeles theatre, the art deco dream, The Pantages. Swoon!

8. Making Harley’s dog food from scratch. It’s easy and so much healthier for him, and most of all I’m so happy he’s finally vegan! I’ll be writing more about this in the future. Stay tuned!

9. Exploring Vegan LA. THERE IS SO MUCH GOOD FOOD AND COMMUNITY IN LA. Holy moly. Color my socks knocked off (or something). And tonight I get to eat at Crossroads, eeeee!

10. On the first “X [Little] things I Love At Age X” I ever wrote, I listed the fact that my son – then inside my belly – had hair! (which I’d recently discovered via ultrasound).


And now, 5 years later, I’ll list that my amazing son has some seriously amazing hair, which flies wild just like his spirit. And although we talk about cutting it often (that will totally be his decision), right now I just adore my little Mowgli boy.

11. My new project with Matt, and where it may lead us. And the fact that it feels like good, important work which will benefit our community.

12. Now that I’m in graduate school, I celebrated be getting a new desk. A vintage desk that is cottage white and petal pink, shabby and adorable and . . . wait . . . pink? I NEVER wear/choose/buy pink!?

Yeah, but it’s really cute.

13. And speaking of that desk: working on my little house. It’s a labor of love, and this house is old and dilapidated, and the work is slow going, because money. But I love it, and it’s it coming together, and most of all – it’s mine. All mine.

14. Ellovi. Ugh, winter in SoCal always leaves my skin so dry. This body butter is amazeballs. It’s kept me silky soft all season, and I love it.


15. I was reading over my previous “X [Little] things I Love At Age X” posts, and I found this quote, and . . . yup! It still resonates with me in a way that I just can’t quite describe. But I adore it, and I adore Bertrand Russell, and I’m happy to repost it for Age 33!

16. Stepping up to speak out. Going to bat when somebody needs me. Living my mother’s truth, which she instilled in me – to always stand up for what’s right.

17. Vegan books for wee little Waits! I love that there are so many resources to teach my kiddo about why we live the way that we do. SOme of our favorites: V Is for Vegan. Steven the Vegan. That’s Why We Don’t Eat Animals. (Also, as an aside, not vegan-specific, but An Awesome Book and An Awesome Book of Thanks are our two absolute FAVORITE children’s books.)

18. Learning about wine. Not in that snobby, “Somm” sort of way (because that’s pretty much everything eye-roll-inducing about the wine world), but just in the sense that I’ve learned what I like and what makes me purr, and that is AWESOME (because wine that hits the right spot is one of life’s greatest pleasures, for realsies).

19. And speaking of wine, growing greens (kale, chard, collards, herbs) in wine boxes.


20. Back on green smoothies. One day, a few years (years!!) ago, I was like “Hmm, so . . . I actually don’t like drinking smoothies anymore!” And so I stopped, just like that. And recently, just as suddenly, I started again. And now I drink one almost every day. And the smoothie love has returned!

21. Speaking of, my Cuppow and EcoJarz lids. They are awesome! And I loooove making matching smoothies/juices for mama and baby. ♥

22. The simplest food. Quinoa, lentils, steamed broccoli. Call me boring, I don’t care. Slather a bean/green/grain bowl with a badass sauce, and I’m solid. I eat this most nights. Soo good.

23. Living in Southern California. I’ll never leave again. I feel like this is pure paradise, and I feel gratitude every. single. day. that I get to wake up in this place each morning. It’s heaven.

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24. Mexican Folk Art. It’s all over SoCal and I sure did miss it when I live up north. I love it – It makes me feel like Home.

25. Being outside. As much as possible. All the time. (See: #23)

26. And speaking of being outside, walking. Walking to have lunch with Damian today. Walking to the Farmer’s Market. Walking all around campus. Feels so good to get out and move my body, every day!

27. Juicing with Waits, when he helps me feed all the veggies into the juicer, and he insists on pushing the plunger down, and then we sit and drink our juices together. Yup, mommy bliss.

28. This amazing dish soap from The Good Home Co. This company is the gold standard in eco-friendly awesomeness, and this dish soap (I tried lavender) is THE BEST dish soap ever. Just this morning Jeremy was asking where it went how how we could please get some more, because oh man it’s just really just a step above. Like, how could dish soap be exciting? I know I know. But I promise you – it can!

29. Getting our Vegan Cuts snack box every month! I know I keep yammering on about this, so I’ll keep it brief. But suffice it to say, we have a blast each and every month opening our box. I love the way Waits lights up when he pulls out each treasure. Love it!


30. Visiting farm sanctuaries. Hugging cows. Pretty great way to spend a weekend. ♥

31. Planning a complete overhaul of Waits’s bedroom, including a custom-built bunk bed and a sun burst ceiling. Wahoo!

32. Changing my hair . . . frequently!

33. And finally, the impending 5th birthday of Bonzai Aphrodite. TIME FLIES, Y’ALL!

Now it’s your turn my dears! What do you think? Care to share the things that’ve been making you light up inside? I’d love to hear them!

♥ ♥ ♥

  • mhhb

    Happy Birthday!! I hope it’s filled with love, joy and laughter!

  • http://www.thevegancookiefairy.com/ The Vegan Cookie Fairy

    Happy birthday! That desk sounds real cute. Please share a picture of it when you’ve got it? xoxo

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

    Happy 33!! Wishing you lots of fonuts, curry noodle soup, and whatever your heart desires.

    My little sparks of happy this week include: knitting wee little dragons (and other amigarumi) for the Neenster; 24-hour caramelized onions, in everything; splurging on a cookbook I’ve wanted for ages and discovering it was totally worth it; impromptu brekkie muffins with N when she woke me up at 5.30 on a school day; the first episode of Newsroom.

  • Kyleigh

    Happy Birthday!!!!

  • Meredith

    Nothing better than putting my little wild thing down to nap, fixing a huge plate of veg nachos and reading your blog! That’s what makes me happy, for sure! Happy Birthday!

  • souperbee

    Happy birthday! Ooooh, curry noodle soup sounds and looks divine! Hope your 33rd year will be filled with more of the 33 things you love and then some.

  • Lynn

    Happy Birthday!!! Wishing you health and happiness! *bighugs!*
    A few of my Little Loves :)
    -Learning to appreciate a good cup of coffee :) I’m still more of a tea person, but there are some great local roasters around here that have definitely awakened my coffee palate :)
    -Buying an exercise bike and actually riding it so that I’m not a sloth all winter!
    -Snuggling my kittens :)
    -Cooking :)

  • Veronica

    Happy Birthday!
    Thank you for sharing your life with us.
    When I saw that picture of Waits on the boat, I just wanted to yell “Those cheeks!”
    Mini Love List
    -Waterlogged (free iPhone app that helps me drink more water)
    -The massive salad, Arnold Palmer, and apple that make up my work lunch
    -The fact that said work lunch only cost me $2.50

  • Alanna

    Happy birthday!

  • Rebecca Carnes

    Happy Birthday!!!!! Hope you have an amazing day!
    Thank you for inspiring me to write my first love list;) Everytime I read one of yours I am reminded to take a moment out of all the craziness and see the goodness all around me….here goes!
    ~Falling asleep next to my son (While he holds my finger) xx
    ~Waking up to a little voice not so quietly saying “Mama”, little hands patting my face
    ~SUNSHINE!!!! lots of it here in SD
    ~ Green smoothies for two – love watching Phoenyx drink up all the green goodness
    ~ Weekend beach trips, beach walks, playgrounds and giggles
    ~ New/re-igniting possible career path – exciting possibilities
    ~ Finding new, fun recipes
    ~Lastly big bear hugs I get from P when I pick him up after work

  • vegyogini

    Happy 33rd birthday, Sayward! Enjoy your amazing day of Fonuts, Crossroads, and Book of Mormon (I still need to get myself to that show)! Looking forward to seeing you more often in the LA vegan community this year.

  • Bianca-Vegan Crunk

    Happy birthday!!! I’m 33 too. :-) Love this list. And I’m super jealous of your warmish California weather. I love being outdoors and walking everywhere when I can, but it’s 20-something in Memphis today…and I just don’t go outside when it feels like that. Sigh. I hate winter!

  • veggiesara

    Happy birthday wonderful!
    What a lovely list. I had never heard of nettle infusions before, I should ask my good friend Google some more about it.
    I’m enjoying the company of my friends lately, my dog and my husband. And I am loving the fact that our house is almost renovated so we can move soon :-)

    Hope you have a great day!

  • Melissa Rixey

    Happy birthday! It’s my birthday too! Have a great day!!

  • Kathi Vegana

    Happy Birthday!! <3

  • alicia

    happiest birthday to an amazing woman!!

  • Melanie

    No way! Sayward, we have the exact same birthday! Happy birthday to you :) I became vegan on my birthday, three years ago.

  • Lisa

    Happy 33! I always save your posts for when I have time to really read them, so there’s my belated greeting. :) I don’t often comment but always enjoy your posts. I cannot wait to take my kiddo to a farm sanctuary. Next time we’re in LA, I’m determined to make it happen.

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  • Nina

    You are not weird nor a freak, but completely normal. Happy Birthday!

  • Dana W

    I can’t wait to hear more on how you transitioned your dog to vegan. I’ve been vegan for the past 3 years and I don’t feel right about continuing to feeding my dog meat. I’ve brought it up to my vet and he doesn’t think it’s a good idea. Also my husband is not on board with it. I don’t feel that I have enough knowledge about animal nutrition to just go ahead and do it and I don’t want to do anything to harm my fur baby. Ok I’m done babbling now. Lol I hope you had a fantastic birthday! : )

  • Brie

    Happy Birthday!

  • Rachel in Veganland

    I always adore your Love lists, Sayward. Also always inspired by your smoothies!

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