Friday, February 3, 2012

Hi I'm Alicia and I'm a Vegan ... and why my blog is called Vegan Buttons

The love of my life, Mike, and I. We laugh all the time.

In October of 2011, I married the man of my dreams. One thing I really enjoy about our relationship is our passion for food. I'm a Registered Dietitian for a grocery store chain and love to bake (I know that sounds paradoxical) and Mike (my super handsome husband) is an amazing cook, specializing in soups. In fact, I call him my Souper Man.

We both grew up in homes where our moms provided heatlhy meals. I remember growing cantaloupe, watermelon and asparagus in my backyard as a little girl. It wasn't uncommon to see me eating artichokes at the age of 7. Mike's mom has been an athlete for all his life. Mike remembers growing up eating bran flakes and snacking on fruit while other kids had twinkies and Coke. He remembers doing his homework in the back of a studio while his mom taught step aerobics.

After high school, I went to college for 7 long years to get a Master's in nutrition, complete an internship and take the board exam to become a Registered Dietitian. I love my job. I love showing people the joy of food. Mike went to college and studied graphic design. Before Mike and I met, his father passed suddenly from heart disease. As you can imagine, the tragic event changed Mike forever. But one of the positives of this change was Mike's peaked interest in the effects of food. While he knew how to eat healthy, he had fallen prey to the sedentary and time-warping nature of a computer job. He winces when he tells me he would drink Dr. Pepper and Doritos for lunch. After his father passed, he resolved to change his eating habits and lifestyle.

The other love of my life, Whiskey Jack Jerome.
He's about 95 lbs heavier now.
I'll post more pictures of my Lovey later.
We dated for 2 years before we were engaged and many of our dates were peppered with nutrition and food conversations. But, our biggest food conversation didn't come until we had returned from our honeymoon. Our obsession with documentaries had once again held us captive on a Friday night. Our random choice for the evening was Forks Over Knives, a documentary exploring how the radical, yet largely unpopular, vegetarian lifestyle profoundly affects our health. Forks over Knives, together with the influence of Food, Inc, the book Skinny B*tch and welcoming our big-hearted-floppy-eared-chocolate-lab Whiskey Jack Jerome to our family began to marinate in my head. I had to do this. I wanted to be a vegetarian.

After the movie, Mike literally turned to me and said "I want to try being vegetarian." And so it began. That was in October of 2011. Today is February 3, 2012 and we are still vegetarian/vegan while trying to incorporate gluten free too. I use that wavering forward slash because there are so many things to learn and I keep finding out that I ate something that had milk proteins or honey or fill-in-the-blank.

So this blog is meant not as "follow me, I know all there is to know about being vegan" but more of "come laugh with me as I learn about gluten-free, vegan foods, baking, restaurants, and how this change of lifestyle can be fun and rewarding."

Now, before I sign off, I want to explain why I would name my blog "Vegan Buttons." My sweet puppy, Whiskey, has many a nickname including, but not limited to: Whiskamus, Whiskopotamus, Mr. Whiskers, Lovey, Love Muffin and my all time favorite is Love Button. My long term goal is to own a gluten-free, vegan bakery. I originally wanted to call it Love Button Bakery (because, yes I am a crazy dog owner and I want the bakery to also include gluten-free, vegan dog treats in honor of Whiskey). However, I was rudely awakened to the urban meaning of Love Button and quickly removed that from the list of possible bakery names. I still love the word Button and envision an entire brand built around Buttons Bakery. So as I begin this journey, with the hopes of one day loving people through my smile and sweet treats, I humbly present to you my first blog post for Vegan Buttons.


  1. I love it when life comes back around to where it began. Such is the case with my knowledgeable daughter Alica in that she has become the teacher and I the student in areas of nutrition and health. She and Mike have inspired me to attempt the vegetarian lifestyle or technically pescatarian as I just can't give up my crab and shrimp:) I've always wondered if I could do it not just for my health but because I love animals so dearly and actually went to school to become a veterinarian technician many moons ago. I too am learning as I go and am enjoying sharing this journey with my daughter and sweet son-in-law.

  2. Oh mom! That is the sweetest note ever. Thank you for leaving a comment. I must say I owe it all to you. You helped me love good nutrition from the very beginning.