Weekly Update: February 15-21

What a week! I don’t even have words to describe how the last week has been. It has probably been the most eventful week so far! All of the excitement has been slightly overwhelming, but completely worth every second. All in the last seven days, I have been contacted by a newspaper reporter, interviewed, gone out of town on a food adventure, appeared on the front page of the paper, and survived deliveries despite almost a foot of snow!

Right after I wrote my update last week, I was contacted by a local newspaper reporter. She wanted to interview me for Vegan in Wyoming. I was really nervous, but also quite excited! She wanted to spend the morning with me as I prepared my Thursday night dinners. I decided I wasn’t losing anything by having her there, so I agreed to allow her to ask me questions and photograph me while I cooked. It was actually a lot of fun. I was completely in my element, which lessened my nerves. She left for a few hours, then returned right before I made my deliveries. Over the course of the day, she was able to see the meal from raw ingredients to a complete, plated dish. I went for my deliveries, and by the end of the day I was incredibly exhausted. I enjoyed having her there, but talking and explaining everything I was doing, while answering personal questions wore me out.

The day after that, my mom, my fiancé, and I went on a little road trip. We went to Denver, CO. Naturally, the trip was mostly centered around food, but my mom and I made the trip to look at wedding dresses. The first place we ate was Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant in Boulder, CO. It was one of the first vegan/vegetarian restaurants I ate at when I was a teenager. It has always been a favorite of mine! I have never been disappointed with a meal there. After dinner, we took a trip to Trader Joe’s. I was able to pick up some vegan coconut milk mochi “ice cream”. It was the first time I had come across it in a store, so I had to try it! It’s true, they are absolutely amazing! The next morning we went into Denver and stopped by Voodoo Donuts! I have an ongoing obsession with donuts and I wasn’t leaving town without at least a half dozen. I desperately miss the convenience of having vegan donuts at my fingertips. Every chance I get to have a good donut, I get moderately emotional. Anyway, after getting my serious donut fix, we did some grocery shopping at Nooch, an all vegan grocery. They have a lot of great products that aren’t available in regular stores. We stocked up on things from Miyoko’s Kitchen, Violife, and the Herbivorous Butcher. I hadn’t tried any of the things by the Herbivorous Butcher before, so I was extra excited about that one! To be honest, I was most excited about my six pound can of jackfruit that I purchased. After our little adventure at Nooch, we went to City O’ City for lunch. Yet another favorite! I remember going there years ago with my mom, so I really enjoyed taking her there again. Even though it was just an overnight trip, it was very successful. We had a ridiculous amount of yummy food, and I “said yes to the dress”.

Two days after returning, it dumped a lot of snow. It was around 12 inches. When something like that happens, it makes me nervous. First of all, driving around with a bunch of other stressed out drivers on the road is never pleasant. Second, my car doesn’t have all-wheel-drive. Third, I don’t do well in extreme weather conditions. Fourth, it was President’s Day, which meant less traffic, which meant less of an urgency to plow certain streets. I survived my deliveries by parking in nearby parking lots and walking to people’s houses. It wasn’t too bad, though. At the end of the day, I felt really accomplished!

The very next morning, I found out that my interview had been printed and posted online. The instant response was overwhelming! I immediately received a message from a reporter for a local news station. I received an overwhelming amount of messages, and a lot of comments of encouragement and excitement. I have been trying to manage orders, emails, and comments since then. After such a positive response to the article, I am beyond excited to move up and on from here!!!

From all of the craziness of the week, has come a lot of reflecting. I realize what I am doing is a risk, but it is completely worth it! To put things in perspective, in the last six months, I have started a vegan meal and delivery service, been on the cover of a local newspaper, exposed thousands of people to vegan food, discovered dozens of vegans in Casper, and quit my non-vegan restaurant job. To say this has been the most productive year of my life would be a massive understatement! Through all of this, I have realized that I will never be content with mediocracy. Since a young age, I have always had high expectations for myself. There were many years where that was lost, as a result, I felt lost. I was unhappy and didn’t see anything positive in the world. Within the last few months I have reset that bar, even higher this time. I now know why I have never been content with any job I have had before this. I didn’t get to use my creativity. I followed orders and did what was expected by others, while not fulfilling my own expectations for myself. I used to think that having expectations for myself was a bad thing, but now I use those expectations as goals. Goals that I strive to achieve each and every day. I am immensely grateful for the opportunities that have been placed in front of me. The only way I can even begin to show that is by continuing what I have started. I feel an extreme desire to give back to the community that has been so kind and accepting toward my different views. More than anything I want to be able to help others whether they are trying to heal themselves through food, minimize their carbon footprint, or live a compassionate lifestyle.

Everyday, I am amazed at what Vegan in Wyoming has become. I love getting to share this journey with everyone! Although this week was busy and slightly overwhelming, it has taught me a lot. I have had the chance to reflect on a lot, and it has revealed a lot of truths about my work ethic and my passion for helping others.

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