I'm winding down from the Christmas high, and thought a recap would be in order. My blurter husband shared with my parents that we were trying to become vegetarian. He stressed that it was for health reasons and not because we're trying to be anorexic or anything (a perennial fear of my mother because I'm thin).
She was actually pretty supportive. My dad's a big health freak already, so he's never one to turn his nose at good health. My mom certainly observed us while she was here, but like I said, she was supportive and saw that we were still eating well, so she was happy. We had a meal with my siblings, and included a meat option since they of course eat meat. I honestly don't think they ever would have noticed if there was no meat since it wasn't Christmas dinner, but it made my mom more comfortable with it, so that was fine.
We ate out for a couple meals, and I had much better success finding vegetarian options. I met a good friend at a bakery for brunch, and they actually had a little V symbol next to all the vegetarian options. Very convenient!
My mom wanted to do a little day after Christmas shopping before they left, and she bought us a couple vegetarian cookbooks from a local used bookstore. She's always been very big on picking out a week's worth of groceries at a time and having a weekly menu. She had shelves of cookbooks and would select menus from them so she always had variety. It's very smart, but it takes discipline for sure. We're more fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants and eat whatever the mood strikes, but I have enjoyed looking through the cookbooks for ideas. I would certainly like to fix some meals out of them.
Vegetarian cooking seems so much easier to me than traditional. I have never been able to cook raw meat. It grosses me out and makes me OCD about the germs and bacteria. The constant sanitation that it took for me to deal with it was just too much; hubby had to cook any of the meat that we ate before. With that issue off the table, it just seems more natural for me to whip something up in the kitchen. I've never really been the chef in our home, but I'm much more willing to pitch in and even take over now. I feel at home with vegetarian foods.
Over this long weekend, I noticed another sign that the carnivorous lifestyle isn't my thing. We watched the Disney Earth DVD, and I was getting emotional over the scenes when one animal hunted another. I logically know that they must kill each other for food and survival. Circle of life, blah blah. But emotionally, seeing what I knew were the last moments of that animal's life, I couldn't take it. So if I can't handle seeing an animal die out of necessity for the survival of a species, what on earth makes me believe that I should eat meat just because I don't have to see the death that came before. The separation, the sanitary protection of us from the dark reality has allowed us to sleep at night. To each their own, but these realizations are further deepening the roots of my new beliefs. This morning at work, they provided a few dozen pigs in a blanket to ease us back into work. I had no problem passing them along to the next person. No thanks, they aren't for me anymore.
As for the actual Christmas itself-- We unwrapped presents, ate a lot (but semi-healthy!), visited with several friends and with my family, bought cute new shoes, and ran up a big tab on new bras for my Christmas gift. A girl's gotta support her girls! Although I'd never thought about it before, ALL 3 pairs of shoes that we bought (1 for hubby, 2 for me) are leather-free! :) Extra-special bonus!
All in all, a wonderful holiday week.