Wednesday, March 22, 2017

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Sun Run 10K


My second race this year. This race was in a town that is set to be the first solar powered town in America. I was curious and I rolled out of bed to be a part of it. The event started off with a 10K run. It was the kickoff to the 2 day celebration. My apologies for not having enough pics.

I took a few pics then my phone decided to be rude by telling me there's no more storage. Anyways, I took it as a sign to live in the moment. After the run, we got to enjoy a tour of several model homes and exploring the town. The town is also a test ground for driverless vehicles. I seenT it and it was the coolest thing.


Founders Square is the heart of the town. The downtown area will be a hub of social activity. Even though the town is still developing, it was an exciting site to see. Like... WOW!  

Monday, March 20, 2017

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Meatless Dish- Vegan "BLT" Sandwich


I just had to try this after seeing a tweet from the Minimalist Baker. Her photos had me drooling. Like how is it possible for a pic to do that? Anyways, it was on from there.

INGREDIENTS:
-Whole Wheat Bread
-Avocado
-Onion
-Tomato
-Vegan Cheese
-Vegan Mayo
-Romaine Lettuce
-Eggplant "Bacon"

My version of the eggplant "bacon" is a little different from what's on her site because I was working with what I already had on hand.

For eggplant "bacon":
-Olive Oil
-Eggplant (thinly sliced)
-Liquid Smoke
-Island Soyaki
-Agave Nectar
-Paprika
-Basil Salt
-Black Pepper


Add above ingredients except eggplants in a bowl and whisk; transfer eggplants to sealed container (or ziplock bag) and pour in mixture. I marinated the eggplants overnight. *you do not have to do this, it's just my preference*

Preheat oven to 350 degrees; line baking dish with parchment paper; add eggplants and cook for about 30 minutes.

What are you waiting for? Start layering and YUM!



Saturday, March 18, 2017

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Vegan Bruh- Aboubacar

A vegan bruh with a deeper appreciation and respect for our Earth 

How long have you been a vegan? I've been a vegan since May of 2016.

Was transition easy? The transition for me was pretty easy. I grew up drinking soy milk because my sister is lactose intolerant (like everyone else) so the whole house adopted soy milk from then so there wasn't a lot of dairy in my life and meat is pretty easy to kick in my mind.

Any tips/advice for someone interested in being a vegan? For someone that's interested in becoming a vegan, I highly suggest you get out there and do as much research and learn as much as you can about this. Google and YouTube are your best friends in this. You're going to get asked a lot of questions from the people in your life and around you about your new lifestyle so, might as well come equipped.

What's your favorite vegan recipe? Honestly, it's a smoothie I make for breakfast at least 5 times out of the week. It's a plant based modification of a drink called the fighters elixir that I used to drink as a teen:

3c plant based milk
3c leafy greens

Blend that first, then after that add:

2 bananas
1 cup blueberries
1 cup strawberries
1 avocado

Nutrients for days!

Black male vegans/vegetarians are rare but seems to be growing in popularity. Why do you think that is? Black male vegans/vegetarians are on the rise I believe is because we live in a world where we have access to so much information on the internet, Netflix, and through each other. Whether in person or talking to somebody online who is also a vegan and learning from them.

Vegans are sometimes known for being extreme. What's the one thing you want people to know about vegans? I think the one thing people should know about vegans is that while yeah, you may encounter some vegans who may be a little extreme, but the majority of vegans are nice people just like you and me. We don't all have dreads and are hippies or will go out of our way to talk down to you. We're all just human beings that want to see the world improve and be a better place to live for every being. Come ask us questions! We're always happy to help.

Has it had an impact in other areas of your life? Veganism has had a major impact in so many aspects of my life. I'd say first my health, I like to workout and do martial arts. My body is really responding better and recovering better on a plant based diet. Also, it has affected my relationship with animals and how I feel about nature. I feel like I'm more connected to nature and have a deeper appreciation and respect for our Earth.

Is there anything you like to add? This is my favorite quote that pretty much sums up why I love being a vegan: "People eat meat thinking they will become as strong as an ox, forgetting that the ox eats grass." Boom!

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

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Crochet Braids- Senegalese Twists (No Cornrows)

Most of my crochet braids has been with cornrows so when I found out about the Jazz Nicole Method, I decided to give it a try. 

I used 4 packs of hair at $5.99 a pack. There were 20 twists in each pack. The ends were very secure and I didn't have to worry about it unraveling. 

I started out by twisting my own hair and oiling my scalp along the way. Then installing the twist into my hair one by one. It was a tedious process but the results was worth it. 

PROS:
-Hair in pack is already twisted
-Has touch and feel of natural hair
-Easy install
-Very lightweight
-Versatile
-Less tension on edges (my main reason for doing this)

CONS: The process took longer to do. But the pros outweighs the cons for me. All I had to do was get up and go. I think this would be perfect for someone who doesn't know how to cornrow. I know how to cornrow but it doesn't always come out the way I want, and the style ends up being a little bulky.

Overall, I liked... No I loved the results and I would definitely do it again. I can style it several different ways. The twist are neatly done and didn't irritate me. This style definitely gave me the hand in hair syndrome. Going to do box braids and faux locs later. Check out my minimalist natural hair routine and the videos below for ideas.





Monday, March 13, 2017

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Chocolate Chip and Walnut Bars


INGREDIENTS:
-Graham Crackers
-Vegan Butter
-Chocolate Chips
-Coconut Flakes
-Walnuts

For sweetened condensed milk (you can buy it if you want but I wanted to use no animal products and challenge myself to make my own. I did it and was very happy with the results)
-Coconut Milk
-Vanilla
-Cinnamon
-Agave Nectar

On medium heat add coconut milk and whisk in the rest of the ingredients; add more or less agave nectar until you get desired taste. Let cool.

Mix together chocolate chips, coconut flakes, and walnuts in a bowl and set aside.


In a bowl add graham crackers and butter use a pestle to mash them together; add the mixture to baking dish; pour the sweet milk mixture on top of graham cracker mix; then add the chocolate chip mixture on top of that and bake in oven at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes; let cool and cut into squares.

This was super duper delicious! It was so good that my sweet tooth made a comeback. Join me a my special guests for #CluelessEating chat. The topic is all things related to being a black vegan.



Saturday, March 11, 2017

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Vegan Bruh- Darnell

A plant based lifestyle has had a major impact on my life says this vegan bruh

How long have you been a vegan? I've been plant based for 10 years.

Was transition easy? The transition going plant based was easy for me, once I made the connection to what made the connection to what made sense and what didn't, then it was no turning back.

Any tips/advice for someone interested in being a vegan? Definitely! Do your research on your body and food. Plant based will allow you to experiment and be creative. Also, go at your own pace. Stay away from processed vegan foods. Eat/cook real food in its whole form.

What's your favorite vegan recipe? The Uhuru Breakfast Blend! Lentil soup with cucumber.

Black male vegans/vegetarians are rare but seems to be growing in popularity. Why do you think that is? There's a lot more information regarding food and it's benefits that was not giving at one time, for instance, meat being a protein source... when there was other options. Health wise, black men are waking up to the fact that a plant based diet helps with the sperm and being that sperm is alkaline a mans diet should be as well.

Vegans are sometimes known for being extreme. What's the one thing you want people to know about vegans? Not all vegans are extreme, just passionate. I can't speak for other plant based individuals, but we all have different reasons on taking the journey in this lifestyle.

Has it had an impact in other areas of your life? A plant based lifestyle has had major impact on my life. My thinking, my workouts, my health, my family's health, how I maneuver, my skin, my hair, and just how I carry myself.

Is there anything you like to add? You can connect with me on Instagram.


Monday, March 6, 2017

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Meatless Dish- Quinoa Tabbouleh


This dish right here! I found a recipe, scanned through the ingredients list, and as always made it mines. My dressing of choice was my spicy ranch (vegetarian style) and vinaigrette dressing (vegan style). It was good with both but I preferred my spicy ranch.  


INGREDIENTS:
-Quinoa
-Tomatoes
-Onions
-Avocado
-Northern Beans
-JalapeƱos
-Cucumbers
-Vegan Mozzarella Cheese
-Seasonings


Cook quinoa according to package directions and let cool; chop, slice, dice, drain fruits and vegetables; add quinoa to bowl and start layering ingredients; add vegan cheese, choice of dressing, and enjoy. No quinoa was left behind. YUM!


Saturday, March 4, 2017

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Green Light- Ce'Lene

There's no definitive guide says this eco-sista

How long have you been eco-friendly? For most of my adult life, I've tried to make environmentally friendly choices, including opting for public transportation, recycling, composting, reducing my consumption of meat, etc... In the last year or so, I've learned so much more abut the disconnect between humans and their trash and I've resolved to be more intentional about reducing my footprint. 

Why did you choose to be eco-friendly? I came across this TED Talk video of Lauren Singer about why she lives a zero waste lifestyle. She has only produced a mason jar's worth of trash in 3 years! In this video, she mentioned a fact that blew my mind. The average person in the U.S. creates 4.3 pounds of trash every day. Watching this video sparked a slight obsession with researching which really opened my eyes to how much I alone impact the earth. So, I decided to learn about plastic-free and zero wasted living and I've been working to slowly reduce my household waste ever since. 

What do you like about it? I like using zero waste techniques because I feel like I'm making a huge difference by reducing my household waste. I also love to share what I'm learning with my family and friends on my blog Brown Girl Green Life. I also really love having more control over what I put in or on my body. I have always struggled with sensitive skin and a sensitive tummy, so using all natural (sometimes DIY) beauty products and eating less processed, pre-packaged food has made a difference in how I feel on a daily basis. 

Did you face any challenges?If so, what was/is the biggest obstacle(s)? Well, the hardest part has been making the habit switch and always being prepared. In order to stop using plastic water bottles for example, I need to always have my Kleen Kanteen water bottle with me. And I often forget to bring my stainless steel tupperware in case my partner and I eat at a restaurant and I want to take home the leftovers, but I'm slowly getting the hang of it. In order to make the transition smoother, I'm currently working on changing one habit at a time because trying to make a bunch of changes at once is far too overwhelming. I'm finding this method works much better for me. 

Any tips/advice for someone looking to be more eco-friendly? First, I want to say that it's okay to take your time when transitioning to a more eco-friendly lifestyle. Also, stay curious and do your research. I'm always on the hunt for new recipes for making my products at home or new ways to reduce my waste. There's no definitive guide so it's important to do your research and try what works best for you and your routine. Remember, you don't have to do it all. 

Going green can be complex. This discourages a lot of people. There's really no "right" way it's basically trying to do something than nothing at all. I sometimes feel like a green hypocrite. Do you feel that way sometimes? I empathize with feeling like a hypocrite, but I try not to let myself think like that. You will also have people in your life who try and make you feel guilty that you're not doing enough or that you're ridiculous for making eco-friendly lifestyle changes. Always remember that you can only do what you can and that even the smallest thing helps. It's all love!

You know I gotta ask, How long have you been natural and how do you keep it so FLY? I've gone through many phases with my hair. I relaxed my hair for a few years when I was in high school but it changed my curls and damaged my hair over time. I eventually gave that up but continued to straighten my hair for a few years. In the last seven years or so, I've learned how to style my hair in it's natural curly state (diffusers are magic) and I've found that my hair really love oil. Coconut oil in particular. I'm still working on finding more all-natural ways to care for my hair though. It's definitely a process!

Is there anything you like to add? Yes! Three things:
1. The decision to go eco-friendly comes from a place of love, so it's important to remember that when attempting to educate others about the importance of green living. Say all things in love and you'll have more successes than not.

2. Please check out my blog, Brown Girl Green Life for more wellness and green living tips from yours truly. 

3. Lastly, a big thank you to Maggi for the opportunity to share my story on CluelessCurl. 

Friday, March 3, 2017

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#CluelessBeauty Chat Recap


The #CluelessBeauty chat took place March 1. This was all about green beauty and natural hair. I knew I couldn't do this chat by myself, below are those that joined in and shared their expertise on all things green beauty and natural hair.

@Tyshia_Shante- Tyshia, a natural beauty enthusiast with a passion for pretty 

@KeishaAdinkra- Keisha, green beauty blogger where you'll find a buffet of all things lifestyle. 

@BrnSknGrnBeauty- Monique, focuses on natural/organic skincare and makeup for women of color in hopes of encouraging and inspiring more to be more proactive and practice green beauty

My goal with the series of chat is to inspire those looking to make positive lifestyle choices. Whether it's with finance, fitness, healthy eating, minimalism, and more. I'm still learning as I go along and these are what helped me achieve some success. Stay "Clueless" with me via Twitter for more info on the next one. Chat later! Check out the other recaps



Monday, February 27, 2017

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"Clueless" Reviews- Beauty by Earth Lip Balm


I recently did a green beauty haul and featured these lip balms. For 2017, I'm on the journey to ditching cosmetics that contain toxic ingredients in exchange for more natural/organic ones. These lip balms all sound delicious and smell yummy too. They contain natural ingredients like beeswax, coconut oil, aloe leaf, and more. They're also are petroleum, paraben, and gluten free.

The multi-pack I purchased included Green Tea, Acai + Goji Berry, Asian Pear, and Grapefruit Pomegranate. Sounds amazing right? There's really nothing negative to say about these lip balms. It does what it's suppose to do which is to keep my lips well moisturized. I'm very happy about that.

DISCLAIMER: In the spirit of full disclosure this is an affiliated link. It means that I may get a commission if you decide to purchase. I will only recommend products that I use and enjoy myself. Opinions are my own. Thank you for your support.