I had to stay home from work today because I was so crook/ill/sick. I spent the day resting and healing, with lots of vegetable soup, hot tea, tissues/hankies and a couple good books. I think often when we look at kindness we forget ourselves. So today was a day for me to get myself healed and rested, a true kindness to myself. If I am not well, how can I act with kindness to others?
I admit I had had a very busy weekend, and I have not had a chance to slow down since returning from Sydney. I am so blessed that my boss allowed me the time off today to recover. I am not completely 'fixed' yet, but I am well on my way now. At least I hope so. :)
Sustainable September is always a perfect time for me to get in a daily act of blogging. Sometimes it is simple, sometimes a lot of research goes into a subject. Some ideas I have had for a long time and been meaning to add them to the list of possible Sustainable September ideas.
Tomorrows idea is one of those 'long time' ideas. This idea sprang from last years Sustainable September idea for a Meat Free Monday (which is an awesome idea to undertake regularly not just in September). I have been watching a lot of TED talks recently. I am learning everything I can on all sorts of issues. The one that stuck out for me was this one below.
September 17: Become a Weekday Vegetarian.
I saw the video by Graham Hill on TED about why he is a Weekday Vegetarian. It is pretty good. Plus its only a short 5 minutes, as opposed to the video yesterday that was 43minutes. Here it is..
Now this sounds really hard for us meat lovers everywhere. However I love the benefits that becoming a Weekday Vegetarian can afford you.
Lets look at the financial benefits first. Meat is often the most expensive component of any meal you prepare. I often spend on average about $4 AUD per person per meal on the meat component of any given meal. Sometimes its less, sometimes more. The Vegetable part of the meal is often less... way WAY less. Plus with vegetables you can also often grow your own. Winning!
Then there is the part that it is better for the animals on this planet if we don't eat them. The cows, pigs, sheep and chickens in this world (the most consumed meats in the Australia, and perhaps the world), often are not treated as well as they could be. The smaller of the animals often stuck into intensive farms, that do not allow quality of life. Being a weekday vegetarian helps or reduces the impact on these animals.
Then there is the environmental impact of the meat. In 2006 the Independent News wrote that "A United Nations report has identified the world's rapidly growing herds of cattle as the greatest threat to the climate, forests and wildlife. And they are blamed for a host of other environmental crimes, from acid rain to the introduction of alien species, from producing deserts to creating dead zones in the oceans, from poisoning rivers and drinking water to destroying coral reefs. The 400-page report by the Food and Agricultural Organisation, entitled Livestock's Long Shadow, also surveys the damage done by sheep, chickens, pigs and goats. But in almost every case, the world's 1.5 billion cattle are most to blame. Livestock are responsible for 18 per cent of the greenhouse gases that cause global warming, more than cars, planes and all other forms of transport put together." Read the article here.
Then there is the whole Carbon Footprint side to it too. What resources have gone into producing the meat? How far has the meat travelled before it got to your plate? The distance your food travels from the farm to your plate, the better it is for the environment. Environmentally speaking reducing the amount of meat we consume and therefore demand for it, has to help. It might not seem like it but it does make a difference.
Then you look at the waste that the meat packing industry creates. I know I throw out a whole bunch of plastic, in either plastic wrap, plastic tray or even polystyrene tray form (i use the old meat trays after they have been washed, as pallets for my paint and my artworks - its a nice way to reuse something that would otherwise be thrown into landfill).
I love that on this Weekday Vegetarian lifestyle you can still eat meat, you don't have to give up Bacon! mmmm Bacon! You just save it for a treat on the weekends, where you have time to savour it, enjoy it and celebrate the deliciousness. mmmmm... bacon! Did I mention the bacon? mmmmm. Bacon! Bacon! BACON!!! Forgive me for my mild obsession with the deliciousness that is bacon. I know that for some religious people bacon is not consumed, so just imagine you have replaced all the bacon in this blog post with your favourite type of meaty goodness! :)
If you are looking for recipes for being a Weekday Vegetarian the simply google "vegetarian recipes" and thousands, probably MILLIONS of recipes will come up. You might be lucky too if you add what ingredients you have in your fridge/garden that you could add to the meal.
KINDNESS IDEA: Make a vegetarian meal to share. You could make it for a friend or family member going through a rough time. Or you could invite a friend, neighbour, colleague over for a meal to share something different with them. Be aware of some peoples allergies, and dietary requirement.
I hope this finds you all well. And if you are not well, that you are on the mend. And if you are not yet on the mend, that the tide will break soon and you will heal fast when you can. Sending healing love to you all.
Much love to you all,
Love Daena (Bacon) Guest
PS. I going vegetarian for 5 days straight is hard, start with Meat Free Mondays. It is a great way to regularly reduce the quantity of meat we consume.