Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Helping you/Helping me in the New Year

Okay this will be a short post my vegetarian/vegan family.

This is the last day of the year 2008 and I could not let it go without one final post. I have used this blog to share some things that I found interesting and helpful during my new experience as a vegan. I will continue to do that but with a little more flair and powerful information. I realize that health is very important as well as all of the other benefits associated with being a vegetarian/vegan, and I want to concentrate and focus more on some of the nutritional content of foods as well as how to prepare certain items. I am going to be exploring foods that I have never tried (or even thought about trying) before so that together we can make an amazing lifestyle even that much more. I will be adding video and audio content as well. I will be adding recipe's as well as links to others blogs and websites that I have and am finding valuable resources to move us to our best lives yet.

I am so excited that you have decided to join me in enjoying what life has to offer us! I look forward to an incredible and unbelievably amazing 2009! I wish the same to you as well!

Love ya my Vegetarian/Vegan family!

Nettrea ;-)

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Before the New Year begins....

I have had so many people say to me that they are going to try being vegan after the New Year so that they can get on the right track. To this I say..... WHY WAIT???? Your "New Year" can start today! I love that people are interested in the benefits of a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle but the time that you choose to move on that interest doesn't have to wait until January 1st. Why not try to have a vegetarian/vegan new years eve party complete with trays of all your favorite veggies. Maybe platters of "faux meats" of different varieties? How about a showcase of dairy free desserts? It is all about choice of course but you don't have to make it a resolution. You are changing your life. Starting today does have its benefits...

Happy New Year my Vegetarian/Vegan family!
Love ya!

Free Graphics - MySpace/Xanga/Friendster

Monday, December 22, 2008

Getting back to what I love

Hello my vegan family,

I have had a lot of things going on in my life and I am so sorry for not blogging like a good girl should . Well, I am back to doing what I love and that is informing you about our new vegetarian/vegan lifestyle! While having an awesome bowl of oatmeal, I am writing to you and compiling some great things that I am anxious to tell you about.

Just an update on my brother-in-law...his first week going vegetarian he lost 17 pounds!!! Yeah, you heard it right....SEVENTEEN POUNDS! Congratulations to you Pat! Cant wait to hear the remaining progress.

I have a number of things to blog about so I will keep this particular post sweet and simple so thatg I can get to the good stuff. I hope that you are enjoying your holidays!

Nettrea Robinson
A.K.A. The New Vegetarian

Friday, December 5, 2008


As a new vegetarian/vegan you may from time to time have a craving for something cheesy or at least for me I have it sometimes daily. Well, you are in luck! I came across this AWESOME vegan staple called nutritional yeast. I have never, ever heard of it before until I became vegan and now it seems that I can not shut up talking about it. This flaky goldmine has taken my palate to new levels of dining. I eat it on virtually anything that I want to have some taste of cheese. I sprinkle it on popcorn, on salads, in soups, on my Italian dishes (almost like Parmesan cheese). I mean this stuff is incredible. I know that I just made serious hype on the taste of the nutritional yeast but here is where I want to tell you something awesome about it. Nutritional yeast also boasts some very healthy benefits to it as well. It is a source of protein and vitamins, especially the B-complex vitamins.It is also naturally low in fat and sodium. Some of the nutritional yeast are fortified with vitamin B-12. The brand I use which is "Red Star" is fortified with the B-12 vitamin. Can you believe that! So I say...sprinkle away and enjoy the feeling that being cheesy can be easy!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

HELLO wonderful vegan/vegetarian family!!

Hello my Vegan/Vegetarian Family,

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I was supposed to be posting quite a bit right before the holidays but I had an aunt pass right before and had to go to memphis quickly. I am back and ready to continue with sharing the latest on our new lifestyle. I am excited to inform you of how awesome I feel right now. I would love to hear how you are doing with your transformation or journey. Now that I am able to blog, I have so many new and interesting things to tell you about. For those of you who are not vegetarian/vegan but are thinking about trying it, how about commiting to do it for thirty days? When I became serious about being a vegan, I went to the PETA website to learn about the treatment of animals as well as how to incorporate eating healthy. On their website was a pledge that you could sign up for to "go vegetarian" for thirty days. I was ready to do it and their website helped to catapult me to what is now a stable foundation upon which to build upon. If you are interested in signing up just go to: .

I also am excited about the pledge because my brother-in-law just decided to take the step to going vegan for thirty days. His official start date was yesterday and he did well for his first day. I will keep you posted on his success! Here he is looking ready to give it a try....

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Hell0 My Vegetarian/Vegan family!!

It is such a glorious day here in Phoenix Arizona. I just sent the kids off to school and daycare, and kissed my awesome hubby (AH) goodbye as he headed off to work. The weather will get to 82 degrees today, which is great weather, (sorry to those in colder weather) to plan the holiday menu for Thanksgiving and to try my hand at making it totally vegan! I will be testing some great recipes today. I will let you know (as you already know) how they turn out. A little nervous you ask? Yes, because I have never had a vegan Thanksgiving before BUT I am so grateful for the way I feel (both physically and mentally), the way my skin looks, and the way my family is adapting to this way of life. I am grateful for being able to help the environment by incorporating living green and above all the lives of animals and their welfare.

NEWS ALERT! NEWS ALERT! My AH just informed me last night that he was thinking of giving up meat slowly (starting with pork) and that he eventually will try to transition to a vegetarian lifestyle. This, from the man who told me that he was a meatatarian and there was no way he was going to stop eating meat. I am so excited! So you see why I have to put on a great spread for the holiday. On top of all of that, we will be with his ENTIRE family for Thanksgiving and I am sure that they will be sampling some of my vegan fare (they will have the usual Holiday meal there as well). I am under some intense pressure here but I am up for the challenge! YES, I CAN!

Now back to our regularly scheduled program: I will be posting quite a bit within these next few days because I want to make sure that you also have some wonderful recipes for the holidays as well as the fact that I may not be able to post anything the day before Thanksgiving (we shall see). If I don’t get a chance to, I want to wish you the most INCREDIBLE Thanksgiving ever! I am very grateful to have you all as family and my support! Thank you for all the great emails I have gotten to encourage me to do what I already love to do, EAT, COOK, and WRITE!

Here's to Living Life!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

"IT'S ALL GOOD!!" Veggie Chicken Breasts?

Okay fellow vegetarian/vegan family, I have another incredible product review! Just when you

thought life couldn’t get any better, I came across another great product and “It’s All Good”! I really mean it…actually, that is the name of the company that produces this product. Are you ready??? It is veggie chicken breasts! Yes, you are hearing me right VEGETABLE chicken breast.

The company “It’s All Good”, boasts about its wonderful combination of vegetable proteins called “Gardien”. This combination of pea protein, carrot, and beet root fiber gives this incredible food its meat-like texture. Who could complain about a meal giving you what is good for you as well as tastes great? I sound like that old Miller Lite beer commercial “less filling, taste great”! They have many great products other than chicken. They even have a substitute for beef (I have not tried the beef strips yet). The variety of products that they make consist of the “veggie chick’n strips lightly seasoned, veggie beef strips lightly seasoned, veggie chick’n filets in a Mediterranean herb & spice rub, veggie chick’n filets in a zesty lemon herb rub, veggie chick’n breasts in a herb Dijon marinade, and the one that I tried and will become a family favorite in my home, the veggie chick’n breasts in a Tuscan tomato marinade. I had these faux chicken breast served over a bed of brown rice with a side steamed green beans, talk about a quick and wonderful meal. The “chick’n breasts only take about a couple of minutes to cook, which saves a lot of time in the kitchen during the week (I thought I would give you a quick tip for those week night meals). I highly recommend this product and I am looking forward to many more awesome items from this company. Enjoy Life!

This item might be a little hard to obtain. I found this item at the “Fresh and Easy” store. If you can’t locate this product you can go to their website at

Monday, November 10, 2008

Chorizo or SOYRIZO?? Move over meat!

(Excuse the picture my camera needs replacing)
I am really excited about being a vegan. I feel good about what I am doing for the environment, I am more energetic, and I have shed a few pounds. I think I will start incorporating my photo’s (before and after of my transformation) here. I am devoting this post today to a product review. Are you ready for this folks? Have you ever had chorizo? Well get ready for meatless chorizo, or better yet , SOYRIZO!!!

I have to admit I was a little skeptical, especially since I live in Phoenix, Arizona, where I reside amongst some of the most wonderful Mexican food ever created. I told myself that if I am going to live a vegetarian/vegan lifestyle that I was going to have to open up and expose myself to all life had to offer me. So, there I stood in my kitchen, eye to eye with Melissa’s Soyrizo. I opened the package as my skillet was heating. I took a small but reasonable portion from the casing that it was enclosed in and placed it ever so gently next to the diced potatoes, onion, spinach, and red and yellow peppers. I sautéed the ingredients together until they began to provide a symphony of flavors towards my nose. I danced to the tune that was both fragrant and intoxicating. What jarred me from my smooth grove was my hubby making sounds as the dishes clamored together as if to be fighting amongst themselves to see who would be first to get the honor of having this meal served upon them.

As I grabbed one of those plates (I knew it was happy), I lightly placed this beautiful looking dish on it. I hurried to our dining room table as if I was carrying a prized possession to a king who had no patience. I sat an inhaled once more the aroma which had hypnotized me earlier. I took my fork in my right hand and gathered a heaping morsel. I opened my mouth and let the taste of the soyrizo dish introduce itself to my taste buds. “Nice to meet you Soyrizo” said the smile on my face as I chewed what would be one of many bites that I would take to clear this flavorful concoction from my plate. All I can say is, move over chorizo……you have met your match! Soyrizo is here to stay!!!!

You can find this tasty treat at many local grocery stores. I found it at WalMart.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


I know that I just spent the last post talking about how to eat healthy and I shared some information on the various terms of some of the food that we eat but I have to tell you about a WONDERFUL dessert that I read up on at an INCREDIBLE blog site called “Diet, Dessert and Dogs”. The dessert I am referring to is called the “Vegan Molten Chocolate Cakes”. As she was describing this dessert, my mouth began to water, my eyes welled up with tears, and my lungs with filled with as much air as it could take as I yelled a great, big “THANK YOU” in the atmosphere to her for this decadent piece of what I am going to call heaven. I was a true chocoholic but was giving it up because I am now vegan and that is not allowed…..or so I thought (I will be able to induldge every once in a while). Ricki H., is the saint, who graced us with this “holy” treat and I am forever grateful (you can get the recipe' on her blog)! Thank you again Ricki, I hope you get to read this.

Do you want to know the most awesome fact about these chocolate cakes??? They are made with vegetables!!! I know huh? You can close your mouths now…. I kid you not! She shares with us that also included with some of the healthiest of ingredients are spinach and zucchini and they play top billing in this sweet performance. She also provides alternative tips and suggestions on various ways to create this vegan fantasy! I am going to try it this weekend and let you know how it turns out ( with pics and everything) and if you are up for the challenge as well try it yourself and let me know how it turned out . I encourage you to visit; it is a place that I will definitely rely on as a staple for information and recipe’s on my vegan journey. Much success to you Ricki!


Vegetables, fruits, vitamins, protein, grains, and lentils….

Tofu, Seitan, Soymilk, nut butter, and GREEN SMOOTHIES????……

Where do you start? What does it all mean? I am going to give some brief foundational answers to some of these items as well as their uses. Bear in mind that there are so many different ways to utilize the various products and items that I will be defining. The key thing to remember is to have fun with your selections. Being a vegetarian/vegan does not mean that you have no options in your eating and living. It is quite the contrary, I have never had such a variety of foods to choose from as I do today. Maybe it was my one view mindset by being an omnivore that stunted my taste buds from experiencing such tantalizing, and wildly imaginative creations in the form of vegetarian /vegan cuisine. Well, I finally let loose and I won’t go back….I tell you I won’t!! And neither will you! YES WE CAN (I learned that from President Elect, Barack Obama last night) move forward to an amazing life experience! So, today I am going to share with you the definition of some terms that can help you to understand exactly what it is to be a vegetarian/vegan and what it is that we put into our temple (our body).

Fruits and Vegetables

I think fruits and vegetables go without explanation but I do want to mention some things about these very powerful foundations in the vegetarian/vegan diet. This is very important to know, sticking to eating these items at EVERY meal is a central key component to the lifestyle. I know that you may have seen people who state that they no longer eat meat, eggs, or dairy products but load up on junk food as a staple. While yes, you no longer eat meat you are not helping your body to achieve its maximum health benefits. Make sure that you are getting your nutrients appropriately not by just eating loads of dark chocolate (carob) and vegan caramel covered sticky buns. Hey, if that is not a snack already, I take ownership rights! LOL!!!


Okay, Okay….I thought I would tackle this one because there has been so much of a debate on how a vegetarian/vegan gets their protein. I actually was one of them until I did my research. I can not believe that in this age of technology and forward thinking that we are STILL having this conversation, but, I will go ahead and state yet again that there is no need to worry about getting your protein while eating healthy. There are plenty of protein in green leafy vegetables as well as you have the ability to take supplements if you are not eating enough. You would be surprised at what the person eating the standard American diet is lacking in its dietary needs. That is also why there are many dietary supplements available, to make sure that you are getting what you need.

Green Smoothies

OOOOHHHH, I love smoothies. I mean REALLY love smoothies but when I first started looking at various blogs and forums on being a vegetarian/vegan I started seeing postings about something called “green smoothies”. What was that??? I didn’t understand! I then, after doing some additional reading was privileged to find out that it meant smoothies with green veggies in it. Now be honest, you were a little lost yourself until I told you, right? They are delicious however and I can’t get enough of them. Here is one of my favorites:

My favorite GREEN smoothie

¼ cup of Soy milk
½ cup of Orange juice
3 Mogdool dates
Half an apple
Half of a medium banana
½ to 1 cup of spinach

I also add a few cubes of ice to make it a little colder

Just try this recipe (if you have never tried a green smoothie before and even if you have), and I assure you that you will enjoy it. Just think of all the nourishment that your body will receive from this incredible smoothie. I encourage you to go out and create your own green smoothies. You can add any type of fruits and vegetables to them. Let me know some of your favorite green smoothies. I would like to try some new ones.


Seitan is wheat gluten, also called wheat meat, gluten meat, or simply gluten. It is a food made from the gluten of wheat. It is made by washing wheat flour dough with water until all the starch dissolves, leaving insoluble gluten as a gummy mass, which is subject to further processing after that. It is an alternative to soy based meat products and is used and can be used as a meat substitute in many dishes. It has a stringy and chewy texture and is very good to work with a variety of seasonings. Seitan Turkey for thanksgiving here I come!!!


Tofu, also known as soybean curd, is a soft cheese-like food made by curdling fresh hot soymilk with a coagulant. Traditionally, the curdling agent used to make tofu is nigari, a compound found in natural ocean water, or calcium sulfate, a naturally occurring mineral. Curds also can be produced by acidic foods like lemon juice or vinegar. The curds then are generally pressed into a solid block. In recipes, tofu acts like a sponge and has the miraculous ability to soak up any flavor that is added to it.

Three main types of tofu are available in American grocery stores. Firm tofu is dense and solid and holds up well in stir fry dishes, soups, or on the grill. anywhere that you want the tofu to maintain its shape. Firm tofu also is higher in protein, fat and calcium than other forms of tofu. Soft tofu is a good choice for recipes that call for blended tofu, or in Oriental soups. Silken tofu is made by a slightly different process that results in a creamy, custard-like product. Silken tofu works well in pureed or blended dishes.
Tofu is rich in high-quality protein. It is also a good source of B-vitamins and iron. Tofu is also an excellent source of calcium. While 50 percent of the calories in tofu come from fat, a 4-ounce serving of tofu contains just 6 grams of fat. It is low in saturated fat and contains no cholesterol. Generally, the softer the tofu, the lower the fat content. Tofu is also very low in sodium, making it a perfect food for people on sodium-restricted diets.


This is derived from soybeans and it is a beverage made to replace milk from the vegetarians/vegans diet. it is produced by soaking dry soybeans, and grinding them with water. It comes in a variety of flavors and can be used in many dishes. There are also other “TYPES” of milk as well such as various forms of nut milk.


Legumes are a class of vegetables that includes beans, peas and lentils. They are typically low in fat, contain no cholesterol, and are high in protein, folate, potassium, iron and magnesium. They also have phytochemicals, a group of compounds that may help prevent chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease and cancer. In addition, they're a good source of fiber and we all know that a diet high in fiber can reduce your risk of developing diabetes and help lower blood cholesterol levels, which can reduce your risk of heart disease.

As I gain more knowledge of being a vegetarian/vegan, there are so many other reasons for enjoying this healthy lifestyle . By being vegetarian/vegan you are helping the environment and our planet, showing love and support to animals, others, as well as loving yourself.
As we move forward, I can’t wait to share with you all the information that I have come across, all the amazing recipe’s that I have tried and look forward to trying. I am so excited to share product reviews as well as tips for living OUR best life yet!!

So ask yourself can we do this????

I say “YES WE CAN”!!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


I am so excited to start my very first of what I hope to be many posts. As I stated in the "about me" area of this blog, I have been a vegetarian for about two weeks now and It has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me. I was very tired, and exhausted (some say that with seven children I should be). LOL!!! My health was taking a very bad turn. I had read a few articles, blogs, and websites on the vegetarian and vegan way of living but never ventured out to try it. After doing some additional research, I decided to give it a try. There is so much information out there in regards to being a vegetarian, I could see how it could be overwhelming for someone (I myself was a tad bit overwhelmed initially). Hence, the reason I started this blog. I want this blog to be like a good family friend. You know the friend that honestly tells you that black doesnt make everyone look thin. I hope to share my own lifestyle change here as well as introduce you to as much information as possible. I also hope to learn from others here as well.

So begins our journey....

So begins the rest of our AMAZING VEGETARIAN and VEGAN Lives!!!!