My Sister Goes Vegan Part 1

My super amazing sister is going vegan for lent. I thought what a fabulous topic for my blog. I have asked her to write a few pieces about the experience. Now, try not to like it too much. She is a published author and a far better writer than I.




I’m going VEGAN!

Yesterday was Ash Wednesday, and for many people that means the start of a 40 day fasting period before Easter.  I see it as a time of restraint, meditation, and preparation for the coming of Easter.

This Lent season I’ve decided to give up all animal products.  This may not seem to have much to do with religion, BUT I do think that practicing self control can manifest itself in spiritual ways… besides, my body is a temple right?

Also, I’m also kind of killing two birds with one stone here, because I’ve been slightly obsessed lately with learning about “real,” (as in unprocessed) food, and have been reading some great books, like French Kids Eat Everything, In Defense of Food, and The China Study.  I also read the 100daysofrealfood blog, and Food Babe (in embarrassing quantities), but, hey no one can say I lack enthusiasm!  Long story short, I’ve been slowly weaning myself off of highly processed foods and trying to eat more fruits and veggies.

As my sister’s “wifey,” would say “I drank the Kool-Aid,” and I’m ready to plunge in head first and try becoming a Vegan .    My plan is to fill you guys in on the struggles, rewards, ups and downs of my adventure.  Who knows maybe by the end of Lent I’ll be a brand new woman.

Here are some of my pre-Vegan thoughts that I hope to explore:
1. Will learning to say “no,” to my food impulses give me strength in other areas of my life?
2. Will not having the option of emotional junk food eating help me to grow as a person?  Will I turn to prayer or meditation, or will I replace my cravings with some other temporary pacifier?
3. Will I feel any different physically from eating Vegan?  Will I have more energy?
4. What will I do when eating over at someone’s house (I’m shy and don’t see myself liking to explain all this to people)?
5.  Will I find good Vegan options at restaurants?
6.Will this change the way I eat or view food permanently?
7.Is there any (affordable) AND tasty way to drink coffee with cream as a vegan (this is crucial to my happiness 😉 ).
8.  How am I ever going to give up Diet Coke????!!!!! Blurg!
9..  And of course every girl’s constant question…. will I lose weight? lol.

There should be a number ten shouldn’t there? Dang it!
Wish me luck!  Maybe all my reading will finally be put to good use!

Peace and Cheers!
NeverContrary’s sister….
AlwaysContemplating?  SometimesVegan?  TrulyTerrific!  BlogNamesAreHard!!

Come and knock on my door, I’ve been waiting for you.

Hello 2 am. Why no, this is not three’s company, I am not glad you knocked on my door.

As I lay awake in bed, and my mind wanders endlessly through all the things in life that piss me off, I find myself wondering, what do people think about when they are unable to sleep? Do you too lay awake thinking about your personal life struggles?

For me, I know I lay awake thinking through all of the 1100 plus legal rights I am denied every single day. It rolls over and over in my mind until I want to scream. But, truly it is not the denial of rights that keep me up, but the people who call themselves my friends that do not care that I am denied such basic rights.

When I have had enough of that I begin to scrutinize my lesson plans for school. Sending myself into a tizzy over getting all of students to actually learn calculus instead of sit in the back of the class with a unicorn mask on. True story.

I wonder if it would be possible to turn my thoughts to happy fluffy thoughts on restless nights. Maybe everyone else lays awake thinking of thanksgiving dinner, or magical vacations. Because naturally the best happy thoughts involve pumpkin pie and vacation. Oh my god y’all we should all go on a thanksgiving vacation where pumpkin pie is served everyday.

As I struggle on my journey towards inner peace, knowing full well, you cannot find inner peace. It is already within you. I know I must let my frustration go. Frustration is a simple emotion. It changes nothing but your perspective of the world around you. It does not actually change the world around you.

Whether I sleep at all tonight will not make the sun rise any later, or my boss suddenly decide we can do without that lunch meeting. It will make me super sleepy and probably nauseous all day, but hey inner peace wasn’t achieved in a day. Many spend their entire lives trying to calm their inner mind, but few are able to do so.



p.s. you are totally singing the theme song to three’s company right now aren’t you?

p.p.s I totally miss 70’s tv.

I put a spell on you and now you’re mine.

If you are from Louisiana you know about New Orleans Voodoo. It is a part of our culture. Engrained so much that children are not allowed to dress as witches for halloween at some schools as to not offend the voodoo practitioners. You are thinking how can a state that votes for Rick Santorum also be a place of voodoo? Well, the people of Louisiana are  a kin to a giant blend of crazy, you just never know what you will find here. But you can be sure what you find will be crazy.

One cannot mistake Louisiana Voodoo with that of Southern Hoodoo and Hatian Voodoo- the difference- according to the reliable wikipedia is Louisiana Voodoo is often confused with—but is not completely separable from—Haitian Vodou and southern Hoodoo. It differs from Vodou in its emphasis upon Gris-gris, voodoo queens, use of Hoodoo occult paraphernalia, and Li Grand Zombi (snake deity). It was through Louisiana Voodoo that such terms as gris-gris (a Wolof term) and voodoo dolls were introduced into the American lexicon. Contrary to popular belief the gris gris or voodoo dolls are actually used to bless people more often than curse.

I tried to walk into The tourist house of voodoo in New Orleans and simply could not. I cannot imagine what would happen If I were actually invited into a true house of voodoo. I fear I may faint.

image from google images


There are many superstitions associated with Louisiana Voodoo:

  • A lock of a girl’s hair brings good luck.
  • If you lay a broom across the doorway at night, a witch can’t come in and hurt you.
  • Having a woman visit you the first thing on Monday mornings is bad luck for the rest of the week.
  • Don’t borrow or lend salt because that is bad luck.
  • If you sweep trash out of the house after dark you will sweep away your luck.
  • Don’t shake a tablecloth outside after dark or someone in your family will die.
  • To stop a Voodoo spell being placed upon you, acquire some bristles from a pig cooked at a Voodoo ritual, tie the bristles into a bundle and carry them on you at all times.
  • If a woman sprinkles some salt from her house to yours, it will give you bad luck until you clean the salt away and put pepper over your door sill.
  • If a woman wants her husband to stay away from other woman, she can do so by putting a little of her blood in his coffee, and he will never quit her.
  • If a woman’s husband dies and you don’t want her to marry again, cut all of her husband’s shoes all in little pieces, just as soon as he is dead, and she will never marry again.
  • You can give someone a headache by taking and turning their picture upside down.
  • You can harm a person in whatever way you want to by getting a lock of his hair and burning some and throwing the rest away.
  • You can make a farmer’s well go dry by putting some soda in the well for one week, each day; then drawing a bucket of water out and throwing it in the river to make the well go dry.

I have been told Voodoo only works if you believe in it. But, all it takes is one little bit of doubt that maybe just maybe there is something to it, and you are susceptible. If you came across a grave yard out in the bayou on a dark hot summer night. Where their were skulls and bones everywhere, fiery candles glowing, people chanting, and they stop- and all turn to you at the same moment. And shout something you do not understand. Would you think they had cursed you?

Would you believe?




Get off my property or I will send my pet ghost after you

You know what is wrong with America today?


Yes as a teacher I believe this wholeheartedly.

How did I come to this conclusion. Obviously the door to door religious salesmen in my neighborhood.

knock, knock … who is it? … It’s the Jesus people ma’am we are here to save you from the perils of the universe with only 3 easy payments


Every saturday a church group ( I am not going to say which church you can guess if you want) goes door to door in big groups throughout the neighborhood telling tales of how we are in the end times.

I decided that I had spoken with them enough times and put up a very classy silver no soliciting sign.

see the handprint- that is the ghost’s handprint. I am not lying.

Now, one would think that this wonderful sign would strongly let solicitors know I am warning them to stay off my property.

One problem, they do not know what soliciting means. Dead serious.

Education Fail.

I have taken to barely opening the door, yelling no soliciting and slamming it shut. Has proven to be quite effective.



The Finer Things

What’s your poison?

Coffee? Cigarettes? Booze? Romantic novels? Italian men ?

image from google images

Growing up we are taught about the evils of the world. Well, little southern baptist boys and girls are. Don’t swear, Don’t be a slut, Don’t drink, Don’t look like a slut, Go to church, Don’t date a slut. The list goes on.

But how bad are these things?

What is bad? What is good?

The king fu master turtle in Kung Fu Panda says there is no good or bad news only news. On the tenth time of me watching this wonderful film, I began to ponder what is that old turtle saying?

Of course there is bad and good in this world.

But are all of the things we are worrying about, truly the end of the world we imagine them to be?

If I have my health, and my family, is it the end of the world if I say the word fuck?




A monday like no other

If you were not already aware, in the south there is a hierachy.

1. Jesus

2. Football

3. Family

Monday all will conincide on a day of all days. The national championship. It will be a rematch of epic proportions. I wrote about the previous game here.  You see it will be LSU vs Alabama again. As if they even deserve a second chance. Hell no. But they get one. Why ? Because they are football royalty and we are not. They whine and then get whatever they want.

Living in Louisiana, LSU is life. Every game day you wear purple and gold. Does it matter if you went to LSU, no. You just do it. I even dress my daughter in purple and gold. I don’t even know why, I just feel so compelled. I can’t stop myself. I taught my daughter  to chant “go tigers” whenever she sees football on TV. I went to Georgia Tech. What is wrong with me? It’s Lousiana. It changes you .

I know a lot of other places take football very seriously. But have you seen cities where they take down multiple American flags and replace them with LSU flags for the big game? No. They don’t do that even in Tuscaloosa.


What about closing offices and schools? Maybe for a national holiday. Not here. Schools all over the state are closed monday and opening late tuesday. Why, the game isn’t until six pm monday? So you can “experience the atmosphere” of the game and go to New Orleans. In other words, school is closed so we can party !!!!


Geaux Tigers !!!!!! 


I follow the Dali Lama on twitter. Yep. He tweets everyday an hour before I wake up. It is positive words of wisdom and compassion that I love starting my day with. A nice reminder that no matter what someone does or says you should show them compassion and love. Something I must admit I often find challenging. Especially as long as Rick Perry is making commercials reminding me about how I have to celebrate Christmas in fear every year. Damn war on religion.

So I thought I would pass along some of my favorite Dali Lama quotes to pass along the kindness this holiday season

“Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible.”

“I find hope in the darkest of days, and focus in the brightest. I do not judge the universe.”

“If you can, help others; if you cannot do that, at least do not harm them.”

“In the practice of tolerance, one’s enemy is the best teacher.”

“There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples; my philosophy is kindness.”

~Namaste ~

Peace, love, and hate

“When you judge someone, you don’t define them you define yourself” Dr. Wayne Dyer

This quote really stuck out at me today. Everywhere you turn people are judging others. From what they wear, how they speak, what they eat, what religion they believe, who they marry, how they raise their children, the list goes on and on.

It so much easer to just put someone into a stereotype and silently hate them then it is to get to know someone. You know genetically everyone is almost exactly the same, no matter what race, or gender?

I often fall into the idle gossip and snap judgements on people. Its hard not to. But why? Even as I tell myself stop get to know them. Sometimes its too late the judgement is made. Damn.

What would the world be like if we got to know people and based our actions out of love instead of hate?

Imagine the possibilities…..