Oprah Takes a Stance With Us

Yesterday I picked up a copy of O magazine. Oprah’s mag is my indulgence. While it brims over with non-vegan stuff – recipes (sometimes still useful for tweaking into vegan fare) and perscription medicine ads…and she’s tried vegan and returned to the dark side (how?), she still adds to the good of the world and this girl’s life, and well, who of us hasn’t got a lot of room for improvement?

Anyway, the point of my blog. Fur has somehow returned to the fashion world. In Oprah’s new fashion feature, they’ve taken a stance and refused to use it. Apparently O Magazine has never advertised within their pages a real fur product, from their first issue in May 2000. Oprah gave away all her furs 20yrs ago after looking at her sable cape and realising just how many little lives it cost.

For those of us who never had to give our furs away, here’s a way to keep promoting your ethics. Fairly new to the shop and brand spanking new up on the website is our new No Fur heart shaped badge from the US Humane Society. As soon as I spotted it I knew we had to have it. The days of throwing paint over people in the street (or worse) is over. Can you imagine Gandhi doing that? Not nice! I’m sure he’d approve more of this lovely but bold badge declaring your stance. You’ll be surprised at the number of complete strangers who want to let you know they agree.

Get your new vegan badge here.

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Healthy “Cheese” recipe

I promised this a way too long time ago ( a cheese recipe) as well as the seaweed salad that returns grey hair back to it’s natural colour. I’m just waiting on permission from Peter Pure to hand it out…but Russell James has his up on his site, so he’d be happy to have the good word spread.

I’m always talking to people about this recipe. Cheese was one of the last things that I managed to take off my list. I missed it for a long, long time. Our other alternative is a huge range of pretty yummy faux cheese, but they’re not cheap and let’s face it, they’re processed. Life consciousness in these foods is “zilcho”, nada…not even a spec. I save these guys for treats or to share with newly vegan friends.

This one on the other hand is made fresh, you know exactly what went in it and nothing has an un-recognisable name.

Russell James’ Macadamia Nut Cheese
1 Cup macadamia nuts
1 Tbsp lemon juice
1 Tbsp nutritional yeast
2 Tbsp onion
1/2 tsp salt

Process all the above in a food blender until a combined to a paste. Easy as that! If macadamia nuts are not on the shopping list this week, try brazils (you just don’t get the nice even cheese colour…and if you’re out of onion, nip over to the neighbours and borrow one. I once tried this with a red onion. Pink cheese is just not the same ūüėõ )

I cut a cucumber up into rounds, plonk on a bit of “cheese”, top with a cherry tomato half and grind over pepper. V wholesome “cheese on crackers”. It’s perfect too to add to hot pasta, top off a pizza when it comes out of the oven and in sandwiches etc.

If you’ve never heard of Russell James, you’re in for a treat. A true gentleman that is brimming over with healthy and often decadent raw vegan food recipes.
http://www.therawchef.com/
You’ll find a similar cheese in his Caramelised Onion and Pesto Pizza¬† recipe.

I promise to be back sooner, esp if I hear from Peter!

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New Blogger

Wow…I am finally in here. Hi! I am the new Shop Manager. Well, not so new now, but still on a v upward learning curve. When I took on this job, I thought I’d be just buying loads of vegan goodies for you guys, from all over the place, and blogging away from week 1. I’d been a fan of blogs for years, followed a number of vegan ones in the UK and US and was ready to have my own! I’d be the ultimate Little Miss Blogger…

Well, that didn’t happen. This is the most full on role I’d ever had. I can never get all the work done that I want to, there is never enough hours in the day and I constantly carry a my diary around just incase I spot something I think we should have in the shop, but more often than not to write down things I’ve forgotten. But I love it. This is the first job I’ve had where I’m not the vegan freak in the office and I never knew there were so many vegans for so many different reasons. Me, I thought it was just not nice to eat animals? But for others there is more to it than that.

No promises to be in here all the time, but what I would like to do is tell you about some of the super products I’ve tried out and love from the shop, give you a few recipes that I’m continually telling customers about (how does a salad that turning grey hair back to it’s normal colour or a raw vegan “cheese” that is good for you and is always a hit with the cheese lovers sound?). There are cafes and restaurants that have proved quite the find and there are always events going on, that I end up raving to people about, that they reply they “had no idea” it was on. So, I’ll be letting you all know! By the way, if you ever get a chance to go to a Animal Rights Conference, then go. Go for all the days it’s on. Pull a sickie, save up your annual leave, book the baby sitter way in advance…these are refreshing to your ethics, inspiring (will tell you another day about an audatorium full of silently weeping people), entertaining, you always learn something new AND you spend the days amounst people just like you. Same values, same lifestyle. If you don’t have a big group of vegan friends, this will be an incredible experience. So, go.

And just before I go, I was in my local $2 shop a while ago and they were selling those sticky mice traps. These are illegal, and the owners were horrified when I told them. They whipped them off the shelves…and they haven’t appeared back (I’ve made a few quick checks).So the next time you’re in your local $2 shop, please can you just have a quick check to make sure they’re not selling them too. If they are, just let them know they’re illegal, but be nice about it. These people are just trying to make a living too. The angry, indignant approach rarely works. I’ve checked out a few other stores and haven’t found them again, so maybe the word it out :). If you don’t get the response we’re after, drop us a line here at the shop and we’ll see what needs to be done next.

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My Last Post

So, who’s excited about easter? Me me me! I just picked up my vegan easter eggs from the shop this morning (okay okay…Hubby and I skipped on the eggs in favour of a 15 pack of Sweet Williams chocolate bunnies – which we will devour entirely by ourselves come easter morning!) In more exciting news, today I have met our lovely new Shop Assistant, Supi,¬† who is helping me out and training on my last Saturday here ever. Pop down and say hi if you can!

Our easter eggs are not online yet but watch the “special occasions” page because they should be up in the next week. We still have plenty of stock: extra dark eggs, eggs with dipped ginger, dried apricots or chocolate bunnies on the inside, “milk” chocolate bunnies and sugar-free eggs. They come in all sorts of lovely colourful foils so make sure you get in on time to choose your favourite colour! We also have Schoc hot cross bun chocolate which is a real treat if you need an easter-flavoured pick me up.

I will keep it short and sweet today but there are just a few things I want to say. First of all, thank you so much to SAFE for all of the amazing work that they do and for being a great employer over the last year! Also, I would like to thank the previous Shop Manager, Sara, who taught me everything there is to know about being an awesome retail salesperson. I also want to thank our new Shop Manager, Eve, who has been a breath of fresh air and has made some amazing changes to the shop. Lastly, thank you to all the readers of the blog – it has been so wonderful to see that so many of you are interested in such a wide variety of vegan haps: recipes, events, the shop, SAFE and everything else. I have had a real blast working here over the last year and will leave this weekend feeling very happy that the shop will be left in great hands.

Thank you everyone & enjoy your awesome vegan easter!

 

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Weekend Update

Good Morning! What a trip it was to work today in this horrible rain (the kind where the entire bottom half of your jeans get saturated.) Nonetheless, it’s always a great day here at the shop:)

News

We have easter eggs in-store! I won’t elaborate at this stage because they aren’t online yet but let me just say we have an amazing range this year, so come take a sneak peek! We’ve also got fresh Dandies back – and they are in gorgeous new packaging!! Clear Jel is back in for all of your “gelatine” needs. We also have tofetta as well as Little Bird Macaroons in gorg new packaging! Lastly, we’ve got a few more new t-shirts in (including a new SAFE one) so watch out online for these popping up.

Links

Check out defensive omnivore bingo.¬† My score is 23/25!¬† Animals are just so boundlessly full of love: Pig adopts Kitten –

Now, as some of you now, I am backpacking in Europe for 7 months – if anyone else is in a similar position, check out this post on how to be a pro at vegan backpacking! Looking for a cool new form of activism? Check out the MeatOutserving vegan food to promote animal rights is just about the best way to win anyone over!

Lastly, and very importantly, we have been given an amazing opportunity for our volunteers at SAFE to be movie extras – $10.00/hour will be donated to SAFE for each movie extra we provide! What a cool way to help animals, eh? Sign up and do something both interesting and world-saving with your weekend!

That’s all for me this weekend – one more week left and then you will have a new bright eyed and bushy tailed Shop Assistant to provide you with boundless animal-rights speak on the blog!

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Product Review: Allison Boots

Good Morning! I’m staying for two more weekends so this is my third-to-last weekend here at the SAFE shop – I’m going to miss it! If you’ve ever been keen on working for SAFE, now is the time to check it out. We are looking for someone to replace me on the weekends – job involves promoting veganism and checking out all of the coolest new vegan products on the market! If you really want to make a difference for animals email eve@safe.org.nz with your CV and cover letter to apply. Applications close 25th March. Ideal for a uni student.

Just before I launch into our main feature, I’ve noticed a few people are having problems with subscribing to the blog. You must have a wordpress account to subscribe to wordpress blogs. It’s free to sign up and you don’t have to start a blog. Log in, go to the blog and then on your wordpress toolbar at the top, click on subscribe. Then go to your account, go to your subscriptions and select how often you want to receive emails. If that isn’t clear, just flick me an email on ana@safe.org.nz and I should be able to help you out.

Enough of that though…guess what I bought two weeks ago? That’s right – vegan microfibre boots! Wow!!!!! These shoes are such great quality and feel so amazing. I truly was surprised at how sturdy they are. These boots are soft and divine, plus, they are fair trade too! So now you can get animal AND people friendly boots:) We will be getting more boots and sizes in as winter approaches but do get in quick because they go fast!

I love the fact that they complement so many outfits perfectly – casual uni wear, formal workwear and even that cute ‘lil vintage dress you’ve been dying to take out. They are also calf hugging so they don’t flap about and look silly. What I love most about them is that they are plain and therefore timeless. They are black with a simple round toe and no hideous zips and bits and bobs that will be out next winter.

Price

$250.00

As a vegan buying non-leather shoes, I’ve gotten used to buying cheaper leather-free alternatives. However, given how expensive leather shoes are (up to $500 for boots) this is pretty reasonable – especially considering how long they last. What’s more, you don’t have to worry about this skin rotting and degrading over time – it isn’t real animal flesh and as such does not need harsh chemicals applied that are bad for you, the workers and the environment. Don’t forget, all proceeds go to SAFE.

Longevity

Easily 5 years +. It all depends on what you do in your boots of course, but take care of them and they become the gift that keeps on giving!

Overall Rating

10/10 – maybe I’m just so excited about having such amazing quality shoes but seriously, every girl needs a pair of these.

Check out the Novacas website and flick us an email at shop@safe.org.nz if you have any requests for particular styles this season. We can’t keep too many shoes because we are small, but we will definitely look into it!

Also, don’t forget I’m always keen on contributors for the blog – especially for product reviews. Please flick me an email on ana@safe.org.nz if you want to offer your knowledge!

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Back in Action!

Hi Everyone! It has been a relatively long break from the blog and from our campaigns here in SAFE in order to focus on helping animals in Christchurch. It is time to get back into action though – and there is lots going on here at the store!

Specials

Dandies Marshmallows are down to $9 from $11.90 so grab a pack while stocks last. If your not too sure how to use these babies, check out this post on three ways with Dandies. We have a couple of packets of Vanilla and Chocolate Raw Macaroons which are down to $8 from $9.80. We still have some valentines day chocolates left which are heavily reduced – and let me tell you, it is a rare occasion that I have tried better chocolate than Bella. Lastly, Glyde Vegan Condoms are $3 down from $6. Get in quick so that you don’t miss out!

Links Roundup

Just some light reading to keep you going: Europe’s first vegan supermarket! I can’t wait until the day comes when we get one here. Check this great article out about being vegan and judgmental. It looks like Auckland city councilors are less and less in favour of importing a herd of elephants to Auckland zoo. Lastly, check out this new study: Chickens feel empathy!

There are heaps of events going on at the moment for our NoCages campaign: check them out here.

Lastly, I only have two more weekends at the shop left. I have thoroughly enjoyed my year here at SAFE but feel that working seven days a week is taking its toll! I have loved writing for the blog and can’t wait to see where our new Shop Assistant takes it!

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