By: Joyce Vandenberg Porter
I used to believe the Food Chain was a normal part of life, however, the way we raise our livestock is inhumane and anything but natural. This has bothered me for a long time but while I was busy raising three young boys, I was able to push those thoughts to the back of my mind. Once my youngest left for college I was able to explore what feels right to me in my heart. My original plan was to go for one year and not eat meat from animals that I identified as loving and nurturing, primarily mammals like cows, pigs and sheep. I had already cut veal and foie gras out of my diet years ago to protest those inhumane practices so this was a logical step. An interesting thing happened at the one year mark. Instead of reverting back to my ‘old’ diet, I also stopped eating chicken and other poultry. It just didn’t feel right and I didn’t want to be a part of so much suffering and death.
My OMG moment, and also the inspiration for this blog, came right after I had eliminated meat from my diet. I was watching a YouTube video of two baby moose playing in someone’s backyard. They were running through one of those old fashioned sprinklers that go back and forth under the watchful eye of their quite enormous mother. The thought hit me hard! Oh my God! She brought her kids to the playground, just like I have done hundreds of times! I realized in that moment that there was little difference between me and her. We both love our children and spend our days feeding, entertaining and keeping them clean and safe through whatever means it takes. I have always strongly identified with mothers, since it’s the most important, difficult, but also the best job I’ve ever had. Now I’m pretty convinced that conscientious mothering happens across the Animal Kingdom. Here is the link to the adorable Moose video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yNy9jTeolUk
So where does “Goodmotherdiet” come from? About a month into my new meat free ‘diet’, I had the following text conversation about our dinner plans that night:
Kerri: R U eating meat? Chix only?
Me: No beef, deer, moose or lamb. Want me to bring a tofu dish?
Me: I don’t know. Are they good mothers?
And thus the “Good Mother Diet” was born.
So what do I blog about? Every week I post a yummy Meatless Monday recipe which is either vegan or vegetarian and a Wheatless Wednesday recipe (sometimes Pescetarian) which explores creative ways to eat well but avoid empty carbs. I do not have Celiac disease but many of my recipes are gluten free. All recipes are healthy, delicious and user friendly. I also love to garden and sometimes offer gardening tips or canning recipes. For more on Meatless Monday or Wheatless Wednesday, check out their individual pages on the menu of this blog
My focus is on eating close to the earth using local, organic, unprocessed foods whenever possible. I am adamantly opposed to CAFO’s (factory farms) for their cruel, inhumane treatment of animals and their enormously negative impact on our health and our environment. I still use eggs, milk and cheese but buy from small farms that practice Pasture Raised and Certified Humane handling practices. I realize that even small farms are not completely cruelty-free, but I believe in supporting the farmers that are making an effort to do it the ‘right’ way. We vote with our pocketbooks by buying from farms that allow their animals to graze on open space as nature intended. Not everyone is willing to take the step to go vegetarian or vegan but if we can eliminate the worst offenders from our diets, like factory farmed animal products, it’s a step in the right direction and much more do-able for new vegetarians, flexitarians or omnivores who would like to see less cruelty in the world.
People often ask me if I will ever eat meat again. I honestly don’t know. This year or so of not eating meat has opened my eyes to the unnecessary suffering in the world. The reality is that once your eyes are opened they can’t be unopened. That said, I prefer to focus on the positive rather than the negative. Cooking, for me, has never been so much fun! I thoroughly enjoy trying and creating yummy new recipes that feature vegetables and healthy grains. I hope you like the photos and recipes. If you make any of my dishes, send me a photo and I will post it on my You Made It page!
Photos originally found on honkifyourevegan.wordpress.com
Giraffe photo courtesy of weruletheinternet.com.
Lion and cow photos courtesy of frugalcafe.com.
Lamb photo courtesy of shutterstock.com.
Goose and elephant photos courtesy of komonews.com.
23 thoughts on “About”
Hi Joyce ! I always admired the effort you put into serving your family and friends healthy and tasty meals. This blog is off to a good start! Vicki Rand
Thanks Vicki. Let me know when you’re in town.
Can’t wait to try your recipes, they all look and sound delicious, and I love the extra tidbits you include!
Thanks Linda. Let me know if you try anything.
We really miss your cooking and your company. Thanks for sharing these great recipes !
Looking forward to the BOOK !!
Sounds like an epic new year. Miss you!
Hey there Joyce! Thank you so much for following my blog. I’m delighted to e-meet you chica. I just read your about page, and I respect what you’re doing. You’re thinking about where your food comes from and making a conscious choice about what you put intp your mouth. My husband and I have been vegan for two years, but we first started down this path for selfish reasons. We wanted to improve our health through a plant-based diet. After a few months into this diet, however; we watched the movie, Vegucated. This is what opened our eyes to the suffering of animals that become our food. After that movie, we started to think more about animal rights and began calling ourselves vegan.
It’s funny that you mention Meatless Mondays as effort to get you beyond your comfort foods like milk, cheese and eggs. When my husband and I first went plant-based, we thought it was going to be a life of denial. We didn’t even think we’d be able to succeed. We started out doing it just Monday through Friday because everyday sounded too hard. I won’t lie, it was hard at first. As I discovered new plant-based recipes and we got used to this way of eating, however; we came to love it. Now we can’t imagine ever going back to how we ate before. You really get used to this way of eating after awhile. And one last thing, you really can get over cheese. I was the biggest cheese lover before going vegan and didn’t think I’d ever be able to give it up, but I don’t miss it now.
Hope you’re having a great week! Celeste 🙂
Nice to meet you Joyce! Thanks for dropping by and happy to hear we share some commonalities! I’m married with three grown children, love animals, abhor cruelty and I enjoy blogging and meeting people.
I’m excited to hear that you have begun your journey of compassion – you’ll be healthier, help animals and our planet. Every step of this journey is a step in the right direction.
My daughter has a compassion blog and I hope you will connect.
good work on this blog
Thank you for stopping by. You have a very interesting blog.
These recipes are simply amazing, much different from the usual fare. The pizza recipes will come in handy with two 16 years old boys visiting us from Germany.
Have a lovely summer.
Thanks Tina. Let me know if you come across any good new recipes.
Hi Joyce, I’ve just discovered your blog for the first time and must say you have a lot of very tempting recipes on here! Looking forward to following you.
I also wanted to ask if you have an email address I could contact you on? I haven’t spotted one anywhere on here.
HI Natalie. Thanks for following. My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Hi Joyce! We’ve nominated you for the Real Neat Blog Award! 🙂
Thank you! You are too kind. I will check out the rules and nominate some other great bloggers.
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Great blog Joyce. I look forward to reading many posts from your blog.
Thank you. Thanks for checking it out.
I’m a vegetarian of 20 years and now aspiring vegan. It’s an absolute abomination what is done to sentient beings; not just farm animals but in other areas of concern as well. Thank you for your compassion and advocacy!
Thank you. I just wish I had started sooner.
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I like your approach of doing what you can to eliminate the worst offenders. It’s been a process for me. No mammal meet in 40 years and I’m finally done with chicken. Aspiring vegan as someone put it. I’ve use the 40 days of lent to stop dairy and fish. Making progress!
Thank you JoAnna. I am also an aspiring vegan and making progress too. I think we should all support each other along the way for our small steps. I have to laugh at your Lent reference. As a kid, I remember giving up chocolate which I like but we never got anyway. Win win!
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Yes, on the support! I have given up only milk chocolate. Dark chocolate is good for you. and better for cows, I imagine. 🙂