Posts in Lifestyle
On Music, the Word Vegan, and the Things that Connect Us

If you follow us on instagram (@brownble), you probably saw a photo I posted last Sunday explaining why I had been a bit MIA. On the outside I was at the Mad Cool Music Festival in Madrid, but on the inside, I was in a much deeper and cooler place, where lots of magical things happened as we spent three days listening to music and taking it all in. It was so special that I just had to share it in today's episode which won't have our traditional written version, but which you can enjoy in full by hitting that play button above or listening on your favorite device via iTunes or Stitcher.

Although I'll be sharing lots of personal stories from these last three days and why music and concerts are such a big part of who we are, this episode is much more than just about the music. We'll be talking about the festival and the bands we saw and of course the amazing vegan food we had, but we'll also talk about the things that connect us all, what happens when 80,000 strangers are together with one shared love that links us together, why I've reached another level of zen and why Carlos is basically Yoda in a human suit (ok, Yoda in a hunky human suit). We'll also talk about the meaning of the word vegan, how the chorizo man turned into the vegan man this year, and how the world is slowly shifting to something new. We discuss community, Eddie Vedder's love song to the Chicago Cubs and so much more. I promise it all comes together in spite of this seeming like the craziest episode we've ever done. It's actually quite a simple one, and it's all about how music is my life, and one of those things that brings us all together.

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On Changes and Fear

In last week's post and episode we covered the topic of changes and the importance of practicing patience. Something we've lost touch with in this "want it now, get it now" society we live in. Today I thought we'd talk about fear, and the attachments we have to certain ways of living our lives, to eating in a certain way, to cooking in a certain way, and how changes can be scary and how we can move past that.

We'll discuss why lots of people got angry at a hot dog recently, why going against the mainstream can be so tough, and why we ourselves sometimes carry judgements that make changes a bit scarier than they should be. We'll also talk about some simple questions you can ask yourself when the road gets tough, to go from "I'm fearful of this change", to, "this little part actually seems doable!", and we'll talk about how sometimes it's the fear of change in our loved ones and the world around us that keeps us from giving things a try. All of this can apply to so many of the things we discuss in this podcast, including eating in a different way and going vegan, saying goodbye to the dieting and weight centric paradigm, practicing body acceptance and so much more. In the podcast version of this post I'll also answer a great listener question from Sam, on being a new vegan in a non-vegan barbecue, and much more.

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On Changes and Patience

After our massive episode all about mindfulness last week, I kept having this thought coming up again and again and again. Carlos and his sister have this incredibly annoying habit of singing the same song for hours if anything during the day reminds them of the lyrics to that song. It drives me absolutely crazy because they just won't quit! Well, this thought was kind of like their endless singing, and it was as follows: "you forgot to talk about patience".

In fact, Out of all the support I've given you on going vegan, cooking more at home, improving your relationship with food, improving your body image and quitting the dieting rollercoaster, along with all the other topics that are regulars in our blog and podcast, we had yet to talk about patience. Especially when it comes to the topic of changes and patience.

In today's episode we'll be talking about two essential steps in making any big change. I'll also be sharing what my favorite part of brownble is, and we talk about how that ties into honesty (the type you need to have with yourself), and the importance of embracing steps back. We'll also talk about why society has forgotten to nurture patience and why people aren't practicing it anymore, along with what children can teach us when it comes to this trait, and the one thought a kid has that we can learn a lot from when facing a challenge. Spoiler alert! It has nothing to do with perfection or with being the very best right off the bat.

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The Mindfulness Episode!

As I mentioned in last week's post and episode, we received a question from one of our reader's about how my mindfulness practice is going. Since we've been talking about lots of great self care habits and tools like reframing our relationship to exercise, cultivating a better body image, etc., I thought it was the perfect time to give you an update on mindfulness and talk about what this practice is really all about.

Because mindfulness is all about presence, moment to moment awareness, and going with the flow, I didn't want today's episode to be scripted, which means you won't get our usual written version for this post, but we'll have a blast together talking about mindfulness in audio! That means you can listen to the full episode by clicking play above, or download or stream through your podcast app via iTunes or Stitcher

In this episode I'll be sharing lots of personal stories including my struggles with anxiety, how I got started with mindfulness, I tell you all about what mindfulness really is, I bust some myths and misconceptions about the practice, and I tell you all about my practice, how mindfulness has changed me and all of the benefits it has brought into my life. I also talk about how to keep up with the practice, the difference between mindfulness and meditation, whether yoga can count as a mindfulness practice, and how to bring this into your day to day life and why that's the goal, not the practice itself. I'll also be sharing some funny stories about my relationship with time, and much more.

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The Exercise Episode!: #nomiles #notime #noapps #justtunes

Hello my lovelies! Today's episode and post is the exercise episode I had been promising. In today's post I'll be sharing some personal stories on my relationship with exercise, we'll talk about role models, finding your bliss when it comes to exercising, and why my philosophy of #nomiles #notime #noapps #justtunes might help you get back into exercising for true wellness and with a big side serving of joy. It's also going to become a music party, as we get into the just tunes part of that philosophy. 

If you're a long time reader of our blog, you probably know that I went from a kid who hated P.E. at school more than I hated chopped liver (and I HATED chopped liver) to becoming a person who exercises regularly and loves to.

Many moons ago when I was in high school, and I was trying to make up yet another excuse not to play volleyball, my P.E. teacher gave me a life line. He knew the problem wasn't the fact that I was a couch potato (I wasn't, and I've always loved movement and was dancing quite a bit back then), he knew I danced every day, so being active wasn't an issue. Something made him realize that the problem were the sports themselves.

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External Body Image Triggers and Remembering We Have all the Tools

Right around this time last year I felt some familiar pangs of anxiety in my stomach. I knew where they were coming from because I felt the first wave of them when I noticed some guys cleaning out the pool in our building and getting it ready for its grand summer opening. I felt the second pangs a few days later when I saw the calendar and realized what moment of the year it was and that the weather was getting warmer. I felt the third pangs a few days later while scrolling through instagram and seeing the last remnants of my instagram clean up (more on this later), in which someone was getting "bikini body ready".

The biggest pangs came when I remembered what I had been doing to get my "bikini body" ready two years earlier and how I never wanted to be in that place again. So I did what I normally do when I know I can't go back to what I'm triggered to do, but I'm still feeling slightly anxious. 

I sat down to write. 

What came out was our bikini revolution series. Three posts and podcast episodes (links are below) that ended up being one of the most popular series in our podcast.

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In My Cocoon

Hello my lovelies! Today we're having another one of our more informal/personal episodes in the podcast. That means we won't have a fully written version of this one, but you'll of course be able to listen to everything in audio format!

If you've been following us on instagram (we're @brownble in case you're not following yet), you probably know by now that we've been up to something. Something BIG! We also went somewhere special to do it, and I've just come back from the most intense two days in brownble history EVER.

In today's episode I'm telling you all about my cocoon, why I need it, and how I made it in spite of not being a cute caterpillar, I discuss the topic of self care, a bit of what we've been up to, and the huge importance of finding your very own internal rhythm and getting to know yourself.

I also get ooey gooey talking about what it's like to work with my partner in crime and in life, and much more.

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My Journey into Cooking

Our idea for Brownble initially came from my desire to teach people how to cook vegan food, and the fact that we live far enough away from the city that starting with a  small group of "in person" classes was a bit complicated. That's when Carlos came along with his high tech ideas and placed the first grain of sand into what Brownble is today, not only our new site and this blog, but also our online vegan cooking classes as part of our cooking membership program. What I realized the other day was that this has actually been a huge metaphor for what my journey into cooking has been like, and now I'm looking at Brownble in a whole new different light. Today I'm sharing a bit of that story with you. By the end of this post you'll know all about the strange way my mom influenced my cooking, what I used to do as a teen every single day after school, my obsession with the French, how veganism completely changed my experience in the kitchen, and why cooking scrambled eggs under a tree made me into the vegan cook I am today. Yes, I said scrambled eggs!

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