Vegan Deli

Vegan Deli  by Jo Stepaniak

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Raising Vegetarian Children
by Jo Stepaniak, M.S.Ed., & Vesanto Melina M.S., R.D.

Raising Vegetarian Children

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Perfectionism

Perfectionism has plagued me for most of my life. It is something that I lived with every day and rather than it being a motivator, it has often been a hindrance. I can remember being a very young child and the horrible way my conscience would bother me if I neglected a task that I thought needed doing, or having to start my school work over if I made a mistake in penmanship, no matter how far along I was.

As a teenager, perfection kept me from being a vegetarian. I assumed I wouldn't be able to do it right, so why bother if I can't be sure I was doing it perfectly. I knew that I disliked meat and I knew I really didn't care for milk or cheese, but somewhere along the way I learned about nutrition. Of course, I had to have perfect nutrition, and it sounded like a lot of trouble to combine the right foods, especially for my mother who did all of the cooking and food preparation. Because of this I decided to just go with the flow and continue eating meat and dairy. Rather then risk making a mistake and not being perfect, I took the easy way out. I knew I could be a perfect "omni."

It was a long time coming (almost 50 years) but when the change came, it was overnight. After a week or so of thought, I just jumped right in and never looked back. I was now a vegan! It just felt so right! I did assure my family, though, that my new lifestyle changes would not interfere with their diet or lifestyles at all. I keep quiet when my husband and son hunt. I still cook for my family's lifestyle. Rather than preach or act hurt, I try to lead by example. I provide a wide variety of foods and ask that they taste "mine." Birthday cakes are always vegan, and I always bring a vegan offering to pot-luck dinners.

I'm still the odd-man-out with my family, but I am able to do this because perfectionism has fallen away. I realize now that trying my best every day is what it's all about. If I can't do something perfectly, that's OK! The point is that I still continue to try. I embrace the trying and no longer worry about perfection!

Janice H.
New Jersey

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Vegan Vittles:
Second Helpings

Vegan Vittles: Second Helpings by Jo Stepaniak

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The Ultimate Uncheese Cookbook

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Review by Dan Balogh

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The Food Allergy
Survival Guide

The Food Allergy Survival Guide

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