Wednesday, December 17, 2014

My 2015 To Do List

Here is my ever changing list of things I would like to do during 2015.

  1. Run a half marathon
  2. Go on a Redhook brewery tour with my hubby
  3. Visit Citizen Cider in Essex, VT
  4. Visit Trillium Brewery with my hubby
  5. Visit the Charlton Orchards Farm and Winery in Charlton, MA
  6. Visit the Turtle Creek Winery in Lincoln, MA
  7. Visit the Alfalfa Farm Winery in Topsfield, MA
  8. Visit the Still River Winery in Harvard, MA
  9. Check out the Westport Rivers Vineyard and Winery in Westport, MA
  10. Make seitan from scratch
  11. Make almond milk from scratch 
  12. Eat at Pressed in Boston, MA
  13. Eat at Susty's Cafe in Northwood, NH
  14. Eat at The Burren in Somerville, MA
  15. Eat at Diesel Cafe in Somerville, MA
  16. Eat at Cocobeet in Boston, MA
  17. Eat at Sweetgreen in Boston, MA 
  18. Eat at Blue Shirt Cafe in Somerville, MA
  19. Eat at Fazenda Coffee Roasters Cafe in Jamaica Plain, MA
  20. Eat at Dalat in Worcester, MA (Menu items #3, #86, and #90)
  21. Eat at Bahnan's Cafe in Worcester, MA
  22. Eat at Fiore's Bakery in Jamaica Plain, MA
  23. Hang out at Knight Moves (Board Game Cafe) in Brookline, MA 
  24. Order the Tempeh Reuben at Acoustic Java in Worcester, MA
  25. Boston Public Library's Art and Architecture Tour
  26. Ride in a hot air balloon
  27. Try kayaking
  28. Try paddle boarding
  29. Try aerial yoga
  30. Visit Bumpkin Island
  31. Visit Blue Hill Observatory and Science Center in Milton, MA
  32. Do a corn maze 
  33. Go hiking (I haven't gone in years)
  34. See a movie at The Brattle Theatre in Cambridge, MA
  35. Visit the Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation in Waltham, MA
  36. Go see "The Donkey Show" in Cambridge, MA
  37. Order a soy latte at Render Coffee in Boston, MA 
  38. Order a soy latte at Pavement Coffeehouse in Boston, MA
That's it for now! I will continue to adjust the list throughout the year.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

My 2014 To Do List


Here is my ever changing list of things I would like to do during 2014.
  1. Eat at an Ethiopian restaurant Done 10/10/14.
  2. Go on a Redhook brewery tour with my hubby
  3. Visit Citizen Cider in Essex, VT
  4. Visit Trillium Brewery with my hubby
  5. Visit Framingham Beer Works Done 3/1/14.
  6. Visit Jack's Abby in Framingham, MA Done 3/1/14.
  7. Visit the Charlton Orchards Farm and Winery in Charlton, MA
  8. Visit the Turtle Creek Winery in Lincoln, MA
  9. Visit the Alfalfa Farm Winery in Topsfield, MA
  10. Visit the Still River Winery in Harvard, MA
  11. Check out the Westport Rivers Vineyard and Winery in Westport, MA
  12. Make seitan from scratch
  13. Make almond milk from scratch
  14. Eat at Revitalive Cafe in Newburyport, MA Done 8/15/14.
  15. Eat at Susty's Cafe in Northwood, NH
  16. Eat at The Wholesome Cafe in Ayer, MA
  17. Eat at The Burren in Somerville, MA
  18. Eat at Diesel Cafe in Somerville, MA
  19. Eat at Cocobeet in Boston, MA
  20. Eat at Sweetgreen in Boston, MA 
  21. Eat at Blue Shirt Cafe in Somerville, MA
  22. Eat at Fazenda Coffee Roasters Cafe in Jamaica Plain, MA
  23. Eat at Dalat in Worcester, MA (Menu items #3, #86, and #90)
  24. Eat at Bahnan's Cafe in Worcester, MA
  25. Eat at Fiore's Bakery in Jamaica Plain, MA
  26. Eat at Green Leaf in Framingham, MA Done 1/13/14. Loved it!
  27. Hang out at Knight Moves (Board Game Cafe) in Brookline, MA 
  28. Order the Tempeh Reuben at Acoustic Java in Worcester, MA
  29. Eat at One Love Cafe in Worcester, MA Done 3/2/14. So yummy!
  30. Eat at the Taco Party Food Truck in Boston, MA Done 4/26/14. So Good!
  31. Eat at Bon Me in Boston, MA Done 3/27/14. I recommend the sandwich.
  32. Eat at O2 Vegan Cafe in Cambridge, MA Done 4/27/14. It was awesome!
  33. Go to The Tea Leaf in Waltham, MA Done 5/10/14.
  34. Boston Public Library's Art and Architecture Tour
  35. Ride in a hot air balloon
  36. Try indoor rock climbing Done 8/23/14. Not a fan.
  37. Try kayaking
  38. Visit Bumpkin Island
  39. Visit Blue Hill Observatory and Science Center in Milton, MA
  40. Participate at a protest Done 2/8/14.
  41. Visit the new Frost Ice Bar in Boston, MA Done 8/22/14
  42. Do a corn maze 
  43. Check out the glass flowers at Harvard Museum Done 2/8/14
  44. Go hiking (I haven't gone in years)
  45. See a movie at The Brattle Theatre in Cambridge, MA
  46. Visit the Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation in Waltham, MA
  47. Shop at The All Natural Face in Framingham, MA Done 3/1/14.
  48. Go see "The Donkey Show" in Cambridge, MA
  49. Order a soy latte at Render Coffee in Boston, MA 
  50. Order a soy latte at Pavement Coffeehouse in Boston, MA
  51. Go to the Vegan Beer + Food Fest in LA! Done 5/14/14-5/19/14.
That's it for now! I will continue to adjust the list throughout the year.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Negative Customer Review:

Based on their large selection of winter hats, I chose as the vendor to supply hats for an event I was planning.  The event, an upscale bar crawl, was to feature custom-embroidered beanies.  The hats were an important part of the event for two reasons:  first, they were a promotional item intended to promote my business and secondly, local establishments were giving us discounts and were identifying whom to give the discount by our hats.  I had 50 attendees who had paid for the event and all expected to get a custom hat.

As an aside, I have organized a number of events such as golf tournaments where I had to work with a few different custom embroidery companies.  I am not new to the process.

Monday 12/2/2013 I contacted, provided them with my logo and requested a quote.  I clearly explained that I was willing to pay to ensure the hats arrived on or before Friday 12/13, the day before my event.

Throughout Monday afternoon and evening I worked with their sales and design department.  I ended up having to drop the logo (image) and resort to a text-only design due to the high cost (relative to stitch count) for embroidering the logo. 

Tuesday 12/3/2013 – After a few more discussions on Tuesday morning, I approved the design for the text-only logo.  I received an email on 12/3/2013 at 1:46pm eastern (note – this company is in California) from Beverly (not her real name), Executive Account Manager, confirming the order.  The email included the following text:

“We will have your order moved onto the production process.  With your selection of Expedited Rush Production  order will ship to arrive no later than 12/13. And tracking information will be emailed from our shipping department, the business day afterwards as confirmation.”

Later, only after approving the work order and being charged, I discovered that I was charged the logo rate instead of text-only rate…about $100 additional.  When I called to inquire, I was informed that I was charged for the logo rate because they used the font I provided.  Had they used one of their fonts, I would have been charged the text-only rate.  This should have thrown up a huge red flag, however despite being annoyed, I let it go.

Saturday 12/7/2013 – Realizing I had not heard anything back all week, I sent an email to Beverly asking “I haven't heard anything since this email this past Tuesday.  Can you confirm the order is still on track for delivery no later than 12/13? “

Monday 12/9/2013 – I receive an email from Beverly at 1:04pm Eastern.  She states the following: “These are shipping today via UPS 3 day air, to land eta on 12/12.”

Great!  On track for delivery two days before my event. 

Friday 12/13/2013 – On the evening before my event I get home from work and the package is not delivered.  I call and inquire.  I spend over an hour exchanging phone calls with the general manager Brian Burr.   

In summary:
·         Brian first tells me that the UPS package was delayed due to weather and the package would not be delivered to me until Monday (two days after my event).  He explained that weather is an act of God and thus was not liable. 

·         I respond by pointing out that I paid for a rush production order and asked why the product didn’t ship until Monday.

·         Brian’s response is that the order shipped on Friday 12/6.  I point him to the UPS tracking, which clearly indicates the product wasn’t shipped until 12/9.  I repeat my question asking why the order was shipped so late.

·         Brian back tracks and confirms that the item was shipped on Monday, but he isn’t sure why that occurred.

·         I then spend 5 minutes explaining that despite this mistake, I was told by Beverly that the order would ship 3-day air, so I assumed it would still arrive in time. 

·         It was at this point that Brian admits that not only was the order not shipped until Monday, but it was shipped UPS Ground! 

Brian offered two solutions:
1.       Allow us to keep the hats, and give us a $200 refund.
2.       Allow us to return the hats at a 100% refund.

Neither solution was acceptable.  Because of’s multiple mistakes, I wasn’t going to have the product that my customers paid for, my event would be unsuccessful, and I would have 50 angry customers to deal with. 

I declined both solution and requested that I get a 100% refund and also keep the hats.  At least then I could mail them (at a significant personal cost) to my customers who paid for them.  Brian refused and said he would rather give the hats to the homeless than refund me and allow me to have the product.

In the end, I had to accept the second solution.  Immediately (as evidenced by UPS tracking) Brian recalled the order via UPS so that we would never see the product.  Note that at the time of writing this (Tuesday 12/17/2013), I still have not seen the 100% refund I was promised!

My experience with was incredibly negative.  I encountered:
1.       Questionable ethics during the ordering process (e.g. charging me the logo price for text only).
2.       Negligence in executing the rush order I paid for.
3.       Lies on the phone about the when the product was shipped and by what shipping method.
4.       And finally, a general manager who was unwilling to make up for a situation that was completely the fault of his business.

Furthermore, the website states “We have never missed an order deadline. Ever!  Based on my experience, I believe this is an outright lie and should be removed from the website.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Join Me at the Lost in the Beer Aisle Waltham Bar Crawl!

Saturday, December 14, 2013 from 1:00 PM to 6:30 PM

Please join us for the first ever Lost in the Beer Aisle Bar Crawl (#LIBAcrawl). We will be hitting bars on Moody Street in Waltham, MA.  The event is $10 per person and includes:
  • Winter beanie hat with custom LIBA Bar Crawl embroidery.
  • Special deals at each bar.
  • Entry into raffles with prizes given away at each location.
  • The chance to meet new people, drink great beer and have a fantastic time.
Bar stops include:
  1. Watch City Brewing Company  (1:00pm)
  2. Bison County (~2:00pm)
  3. Joco's Bar & Kitchen (~3:15pm)
  4. The Gaff (~4:15pm)
  5. The Skellig (~5:30pm)
See the map below to see the crawl route.  We will start at Watch City and end at The Gaff.  Ample parking and a super-close commuter rail stop are marked on the map as well.
Tickets are limited, so get them now before they are gone!  

Note: All sales must be complete by Wednesday 12/1 (to allow time for hats to be ordered). 

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

I Love Quotes!

Here are some of my favorites!
“The Human Spirit Is Not Dead. It Lives On In Secret... It Has Come To Believed That Compassion, In Which All Ethics Must Take Root, Can Only Attain Its Full Breadth And Depth If It Embraces All Living Creatures And Does Not Limit Itself To Mankind.” 
-Albert Schweitzer

"Be soft. Do not let the world make you hard. Do not let pain make you hate. Do not let the bitterness steal your sweetness. Take pride that even though the rest of the world may disagree, you still believe it to be a beautiful place." ~Kurt Vonegut

“"Science may have found a cure for most evils; but it has found no remedy for the worst of them all - the apathy of human beings."” - Helen Keller

"Go into the arts. I'm not kidding. The arts are not a way to make a living. They are a very human way of making life more bearable. Practicing an art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow, for heaven's sake. Sing in the shower. Dance to the radio. Tell stories. Write a poem to a friend, even a lousy poem. Do it as well as you possibly can. You will get an enormous reward. You will have created something." -Kurt Vonnegut

“Humans are not natural carnivores. When we kill animals to eat them, they end up killing us because their flesh—which contains cholesterol and saturated fat—was never intended for human beings who are natural herbivores.” -Dr. William Roberts, Editor-in-Chief of The American Journal of Cardiology and professor at Baylor University
"'Kindness' covers all of my political beliefs. No need to spell them out. I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try." ~Roger Ebert

“There is no way to overstate the magnitude of the collective spiritual transformation that will occur when we shift from food of violent oppression to food of gentleness and compassion.”
-Dr. Will Tuttle

“Getting your nutrients from meat is like running your water through a sewer before you drink it.” -Colleen Riordan

“We tend to think animals are lower than us, but all the scientists in the world couldn’t design and operate a bumblebee’s wing. We can’t jump or run very fast, and we can’t carry vast weights like an ant can. We can’t see in the dark and we can’t fly except crammed in a noisy tube like sardines, which doesn’t count. Humans compared to animals are almost totally deaf, and we can’t smell a fart in an elevator by their standards. We are finite and separate, and neurotic, while the consciousness of an animal is at peace and eternal. We strive and go crazy to become more important. Animals rest and sleep and enjoy the company of each other. We think we have evolved upwards from animals but we have lost almost all of their qualities and abilities. The idea that animals don’t have consciousness or that they don’t have a soul is rather crass. It shows a lack of consciousness. They talk, they have families, they feel things, they act individually or together to solve problems, they often care of their young as a tribal unit. They play, they travel, and medicate themselves when they get sick. They cry when others in the herd die, they know about us humans. Of course they have a soul, a very pristine one. We humans are only now attempting with the recent rise in consciousness to achieve the soul that animals have naturally.” -Stuart Wilde 
“I have come to believe over and over again that what is most important to me must be spoken, made verbal and shared, even at the risk of having it bruised or misunderstood.” 
-Audre Lorde

When I love, I love: wholly, thoroughly, completely, drowning in everything. Every glance can be a conversation, eyes just playing and saying what needs to be said. Silence is loud, and the air becomes heavy. I want you. I want all of you.” -Warsan Shire

“When it comes to animal agriculture, there is conventional, which is rally hideous, and ‘compassionate’ and ‘certified humane’ or whatever, which ‘may’ be ‘slightly’ less hideous. But it is all torture. It’s all wrong. These ‘happy’ gimmicks are just designed to make the public feel better about exploiting animals. Don’t buy the propaganda of ‘happy’ exploitation. Go vegan and promote veganism.”
-Gary Francione

“the important thing is not to stop questioning.”
- albert einstein

“Well it’s true, ever since I stopped eating meat I feel a lot better among animals, I feel I can be much more honest when I pat a dog.”
- Leonard Cohen

“Animal rights is the most unextreme philosophy I can imagine. It is about non-violence. It is about compassion. It is about not harming and not causing suffering and not killing when we don’t need to. That is it. It is really, truly that simple.”
- Stephanie Ernst

“But for the sake of some little mouthful of flesh, we deprive a soul of the sun, and light, and that proportion of life and time they had been born into the world to enjoy.”
- Plutarch

"Here's to the crazy ones, the misfits, the rebels, the troublemakers, the round pegs in the square holes... the ones who see things differently - they're not fond of rules... You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify or vilify them, but the only thing you can't do is ignore them because they change things... they push the human race forward, and while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius, because the ones who are crazy enough to think that they can change the world, are the ones who do."
- Steve Jobs 

“Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.'” 
-Harriet Tubman

“Asking vegans to respect your decision to eat meat is on par with asking feminists to respect sexists, asking POC to respect racists and asking homosexuals to respect homophobes. It is ludicrous to think that difference in opinion warrants mutual respect, especially when the opposing opinion in question not only stands for everything you are against but also appropriates suffering, defends oppression and encourages the continuance of exploitation.” - Kieren

“We need another and a wiser and perhaps a more mystical concept of animals. Remote from universal nature and living by complicated artifice, man in civilization surveys the creature through the glass of his knowledge and sees thereby a feather magnified and the whole image in distortion. We patronize them for their incompleteness, for their tragic fate of having taken form so far below ourselves. And therein we err. For the animal shall not be measured by man.”
-Henry Beston

"I had never seen a slaughterhouse before. My blood ran cold. This didn't just turn me into a vegetarian. It turned me into a genuinely compassionate human being. I ultimately became vegan when I aw what happens to millions of chickens - their beak burned off, millions of tiny male chicks being hurled to their death into grinders, premature calves being deliberately induced and being killed by crushing to death. It is a so tiresome to hear the hideous lies and self delusion from those who profit from this ghastly trade. I am a vegan because I love life in all its forms."
- Philip Wollen

“For as long as man continues to be the ruthless destroyer of lower living beings, he will never know health or peace. For as long as men massacre animals, they will kill each other. Indeed, he who sows the seeds of murder and pain cannot reap joy and love.”
- Pythagorus
What are your favorite quotes?

Monday, March 18, 2013

Where Do You Get Your Protein?

Welcome to our series: Vegan Myths Dispelled. This post focuses on protein.

Myth 1: You need a lot of protein in your diet (more than you can get as a vegan)

Truth: As long as one is eating a variety of plant foods in sufficient quantity to maintain one’s weight, the body gets plenty of protein (Source).

For more information check out:

The Protein Myth: Why You Need Less Protein Than You Think

Myth 2: You can't eat too much protein

Truth: "According to Dr. Cordain, a diet very high in animal protein foods would cause a person to become seriously ill with nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and eventually death from protein toxicity. For most people the dietary ceiling for protein is 200 to 300 grams a day or about 30 to 40 percent of the normal daily calorie intake." (Source) Too much protein in your diet can cause kidney disease, cancer, osteoporosis, and kidney stones (Source).

For more information check out: 

Myth 3: Protein can only be found in animal products

Truth: Protein come from vegetable!

For more information check out: 

Myth 4: Animal Protein is healthy (Also, the Paleo/Atkins Diet is healthy)

Truth: Animal protein is full of cholesterol, antibiotics, hormones, ammonia, and feces. Animal protein is also very acidic, which promotes cancer. Plus eating meat is shown to cause tumor growth. "Eating animal-derived foods causes our most common diseases for many well-established reasons, including the indisputable facts that they contain no dietary fiber, are filthy with disease-causing microbes (including mad cow prions, and E. coli and salmonella bacteria), and contain the highest levels of poisonous environmental chemicals found in the food chain" (Source).

For more information check out: 


Myth 5: Weightlifters and other athletes cannot be vegan

Truth: Here are just some of the many vegan athletes that prove this myth wrong: Mac Danzig, Aaron Simpson, Rich Roll, Brendan Brazier, Derek Tresize, Jake Sheilds, Jim Morris, Robert Cheeke, Jehini Malik, Mindy Collette, Ed Bauer, Carl Lewis, Antonio McKee, Torre Washington, Billy Simmonds, Joel Kirklis, Noah Hannibal, and Patrik Baboumian.

For more info check out:

Please let me know if you have any more questions!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Join me at the March 20213 Boston Craft Beer Meetup!

Hosted by LIBA and BABES

The craft beer meet-up is a social networking event intended for anyone who loves beer.  You do not need to know anyone to attend...come meet some new friends!  In fact, bring your friends, your family, or even random strangers!

The event will be casual.  No agenda.  Come, drink, talk beer, and make new friends.  Our meet-ups are FREE to attend, although you are responsible for the cost of food or any drinks that you order.

People new to the craft-beer scene should not hesitate to join us; you won't find anything intimidating about the event...folks with all levels of beer-knowledge will be represented.

If you are coming, please RSVP using the register button above. 
Check out the recaps from our previous events:
When tweeting about the event, please use the #LIBAbeerup hash tag.

Founded in 1989 the Cambridge Brewing Company is the oldest brewery-restaurant in the Boston area and one of the nation's first. In 2012 it was voted best brewpub in the world.  As pioneers of new American beer styles they offer patrons a wide array of hand crafted original beers as well as interpretations of classic world styles and experimental beers.  CBC is dedicated to using local ingredients and uses local grains, heather, pumpkins and much more. Their beers and brewers have received numerous awards locally, nationally, and internationally.

Special Guest
Special Guest: Jay Sullivan - lead brewer, Cambridge Brewing Co. brewer will be joining us.  Come hear Jay talk about CBC and the beers he brews.  Guests will have an opportunity to speak with Jay and ask questions.

Saturday March 9th.  12pm - 4pm.

Directions & Parking
Driving directions and MBTA info can be found here.  Parking is at the Kendall Cinema.  CBC will validate your parking for a significant discout!

Door Prizes
Bring your business card for a chance to win fabulous prizes.  Blank cards will be made available for folks without business cards.

Drawing will be held at 3:00.  Must be present to win!

Below are the sponsors who have donated the door prizes or are helping cover expenses for the event.  Please take a moment to check out our sponsor's websites! 
To sponsor this event, contact Josh -

Lost in the Beer Aisle
Mystery Prize
Lost in the Beer Aisle will be donating to the door prizes as usual.  If you haven't checked out Lost in the Beer Aisle, the site is all about being laid back and enjoying beer.  The writing style is unintimidating and is welcoming to people with all different levels of beer knowledge.
Cambridge Brewing Co.
Two $25 Gift Certificates

CBC has graciously donated two $25 gift certificates toward the door prizes.

Craft Beer Cellar
Two $25 Gift Certificates
Craft Beer Cellar in Belmont, MA is a BEER STORE, focused on craft, micro, or artisanal brewed beers, from the United States and beyond. Our mission has been to create a BEER STORE; a place whose central focus is BEER, not liquor or wine.