The Day We Got Married

Yesterday was the 3rd anniversary of the day JC and I met for the first time. It just feels appropriate to post all about the day we sealed the deal (besides, it’s Thursday, so this is definitely one big Thing I Love). Let me tell you about our wedding in October. If you want to have a general run down of vegan wedding related stuff, please check out my posts for 2013’s VeganMoFo This is going to be long. Phew. —– The funny thing about writing a wedding post nearly 4 months later is that in retrospect everything seems better than it did in the days immediately following the big day. Now, I’m tempted to sugar-coat everything into a wonderful fairy tale wedding story where everything happens exactly like we dreamed it would, and nothing went wrong. I want to tell you that it was perfect. I do. But do you need to read about another beautifully perfect wedding story? There are enough out there I’m sure. Our wedding wasn’t perfect. Most things aren’t, but it was beautiful, and meaningful to us. We worked together to make an experience that was significant to us and our families. And I think we did the best we could with what we had control over – ourselves. While we were standing under the chuppah, in front of our friends and family, I felt like I was watching us standing there holding hands. It was like a dream. Here was my favourite person on…

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Coffee on Manitoulin Island & in Tobermory

One of the biggest discoveries of the trip is how much I like really good coffee. We did not bring any of our Alternative Grounds  or Coffeecology roast coffee with us on the trip, and instead bought a tin of pre-ground coffee at Foodland. It was passable, but we’re pretty spoiled on the coffee front. I wanted tasty interesting coffee, and luckily there was a coffee shop still open for the season in Tobermory. Before getting on the MS Chi-Cheemaun ferry to Manitoulin Island we picked up a cup of regular coffee at The Coffee Shop (20 Bay St, Tobermory) near the Little Tub harbour. Prices were a bit above an average coffee shop in Toronto, but I imagine that’s what happens when you’re one of the only places in town offering a product. They also have soy milk available for coffee/tea and service was really friendly (especially since we went in moments after the doors opened). Later, once we had gotten to Manitoulin Island we went to Loco Beanz in Little Current a couple of times. I really loved their colourful storefront, and the interior was really cozy too. I didn’t look for any lunch options, but they did have this cookie from the Gardens Gate Restaurant, the same restaurant we had attempted to go the day before (we were way too early.)  The soy lattes were also really great (they were use Natur-a brand Soy Milk on the day I was there) We had one of these per…

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The Not-Honeymoon. North Bruce Peninsula – Rainy autumn days at the cottage

I hope to have photos from the wedding soon, I might end up sharing the wedding story sans photos, because there are going to be a lot of them in the next few weeks. In the meantime please read Kailey’s blog (Ms. Soul to Bowl sauce herself) about being one of our wedding crashers, It’s so weird (& I mean that in the best possible way) to be blogged about. It also seems kind of like the natural result of inviting semi-strangers to our wedding via this blog. JC and I spent a week in the beautiful North Bruce Peninsula for some much needed rest & relaxation. The funny thing is, that while we’ve talked about cottaging a lot the past couple years of knowing each other, this was the first time we had ever actually gone cottaging together (I had gone a total of two times since moving to Toronto, each time on planning retreats with the TYFPC.) JC rented a car, we stopped in to Through Being Cool and stocked up on some cheese buns, donuts, and other treats, and then we drove several hours to Tobermory. The benefit of driving in the autumn is that the colours in Ontario are beautiful, the trees are green, orange, gold, yellow, and red, and just truly awe inspiring. As someone from Alberta I’m especially aware of the diversity in colours because we normally didn’t get such vivid reds. (Why do leaves change colour? Go read this.) Our time in the…

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Things I Love Thursday: Wedded Edition.

We are in the beautiful North Bruce Peninsula this week for a little break after the excitement, stress, and fun of planning, then having our wedding last weekend. I’d like to post a more detailed update about the wedding soon, but for now – I (and JC) had a lovely time. I went in thinking whatever will happen will happen, and no matter what I would be leaving married to an amazing partner, lover, and friend, and that’s what it was all about. Everything else was just icing on a tasty vegan wedding cake. I loved seeing friends and family I hadn’t seen in a while and meeting new people and some of my new family for the first time. Unfortunately it was a tough year for some of my family/friends and several pairs couldn’t make it due to illness, but they were in my thoughts. I’m still left with this lingering wish I had invited more people that were important to me – but didn’t invite because I thought they wouldn’t/couldn’t come, or it wouldn’t work out some how. Because there were some invites I sent out, with no expectation of attendance, where I was pleasantly surprised. I also wish RSVPs and Invitations didn’t get lost. We mailed out about 70-80 envelopes, and it turns out some still haven’t arrived. This doesn’t completely shake my love of the postal system, but I do wonder if my terrible printing had something to do with cards never arriving. I’ll try and…

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End of #VeganMoFo – Vegan Wedding Edition – Weirdest Giveaway? You’re Invited.

So, as you may know, JC and I are getting married in October. We have a lovely venue booked, the menu has been planned out, the ceremony has been written, invitations have gone out (& RSVPs have even come back), dresses and suits have been purchased and fitted and talked about, flowers have been booked, hair and make up appointments are set, and everything is mostly ready to go. JC and I have been playing with this idea for a while, especially since we do know a few people would like to attend the relative novelty of an entirely vegan wedding even though they don’t particularly know us much beyond this blog, or twitter, or facebook, or just vaguely within the community. So you’re invited. And I’m not kidding. (phew… I’m really not kidding am I?) Please leave a comment and tell us why you’d want to attend, and from those comments, we’ll pick our favourites. Please make sure to write in a valid email address where we can contact you. This is open to anyone awesome 18+ that will find themselves in Toronto, Ontario on October 13, 2013. Dear Friends & Family who are already invited Please know that we absolutely love you, and we’re really glad you’re coming to our wedding. You are really important to us, and that’s why we invited you, and hoped you would join us on our special little day. I hope you don’t feel that having some enthusiastic vegan wedding crashers takes away…

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Vegan MoFo – Wedding Cake

Update: click here to read about our wedding day, the good, the bad, the ugly, and the lovely. Oh Cake. Why has it taken me so long to talk about cake. One of the first decisions we made after getting engaged was who we wanted to make our cake. No, I’m not joking. Maybe this was premature, as new vegan bakeries have actually opened in the time it took us to get close to the wedding, but I still feel good about our decision to go with Sweets from the Earth. JC and I met up with Ilana Kadonoff, owner and chief baker extraordinaire at Sweets from the Earth  (SFTE) a few months after our engagement party, and it was a really positive meeting. She was so nice and helpful, and gave us ideas, and direction when we only had a slight picture in mind. We sampled a variety of Sweets from the Earth cake flavours in the form of tasty SFTE cupcakes  – including some flavours I hadn’t even considered and decided on the flavours that will eventually make up our wedding cake tiers next month. Do go for cake tastings. We were ready to go after one meeting, but you might want to sample some of the other vegan cake options available to you, especially if you live in Toronto. Other vegan and vegan-friendly options in Toronto off the top of my head are Bunner’s Bake Shop, Tori’s Bake Shop, Rashmi’s Bakery, and Vegan Danish Bakery (especially if you’re Danish…

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Vegan Weddings – Then there are the shoes. VeganMoFo

I’m getting a bit burnt out about weddings lately, I’ll admit it. Our wedding is less than a month away, and it feels like the final countdown music is playing. All urgency I had been feeling is gone, and I’m in this strange stage of acceptance and shrugging. Maybe this is a good thing. Continuing on in the series on Vegan Weddings for Vegan MoFo let’s talk about the shoes! Update: click here to read about our wedding day, the good, the bad, the ugly, and the lovely. But recently something wonderful brightened my day. I got tagged in a photo on instagram. And it was a pair of shoes. A beautiful purple pair of vegan, eco-friendly, fair-labour shoes made by Nicora Johns. These are the shoes I’m planning on wearing when I get married, and while they’ve just been made, I love them already and can’t wait to stick them on my feet. I emailed Stephanie (Nicora) shortly after the kickstarter campaign finished and asked if I could still order shoes… yes, I’m a last minute kind of girl and wasn’t sure if they would even be able to make shoes for me in time, but felt like the risk was worth it. It seemed I had emailed at the perfect moment… it was a day or two before they were starting their first run of shoes. Phew. The experience contacting them was incredibly positive, and while I know it’s only the beginning for them, it felt really nice to…

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Dealing with Caterers – Vegan Weddings – Vegan MoFo 2013

Continuing in my Vegan Wedding theme for Vegan MoFo 2013 – here’s a bit about my experience with caterers, and a few tips. P.S. It’s also less than a month before JC and I get married. Eeeee. update: click here to read about our wedding day, the good, the bad, the ugly, and the lovely. Early in the wedding planning process I started to look at caterers and venues and options for the wedding. To be honest, it was one of the main criteria in the decision making process. You may notices that JC and I love food. Finding a really fantastic restaurant is more than just a night out, it’s a hobby, and we love to share with each other and others, so I’m sure it’s not surprising that it ranked highly. In Toronto some venues have in-house caterers that you’re obligated to use, others will let you use your own caterer with certain stipulations or additional fees, and with others you are completely on your own. Some include service, some don’t. It depends on your budget, and how much you want to spend and how many separate service providers you want to work with. I researched a few around the city and sent emails to a few places that seemed promising, nearly everyone got back to me with wedding package information, and claimed they knew how to cater a vegan wedding (though some glossed over that part), but more inquiries about options and menus usually showed they didn’t really…

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Vegan Wedding Dresses – VeganMoFo

Continuing with my VeganMoFo theme this year on Vegan Weddings, Let’s talk Dresses! What’s not vegan about a wedding dress? You’re not eating it…? This is a question I was actually asked a couple of times. Well that’s one of the instances where being vegan and following a plant-based diet differ. Sometimes people don’t consider silk or wool when they’re thinking about their dress. And some people (if they’re me) think about it too much. So, what’s wrong with silk? I was going to give you my thoughts on this, but I think The Ethical Man sums it up perfectly for me too: In silk operations, the insects are viewed and treated as inanimate commodities, nothing more. I am hard-pressed to think of anything more arrogant than wholly appropriating the lives of other creatures — literally claiming to own others’ bodies. In that regard, the silk industry is no different from the animal industries we often more willingly deem immorally exploitative. (read more about what’s wrong with silk here) To me, it just seems logical that I would avoid that particular industry as well as some of the others. But what about “Peace Silk” or “Ahimsa Silk” well… again, I’ll leave that to someone that’s already covered it extensively. Worm Spit is run by a non-vegan producer of regular silk products and they have an interesting write up on the realities of peace silk (as in, is it really that peaceful?): I think that Ahimsa Silk doesn’t really equal non-violence to insects, once…

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Throwing a Vegan Engagement Party. Vegan MoFo 2013

Vegan Wedding Related time-sensitive note: For brides on a budget or people that like cute white dresses there is a sale going on on Unique Vintage that you might be into. (I’m unaffiliated with them, but I was amazed at  how cheap some of their dresses were while being pretty AND 100% cotton.) Back to our scheduled programming. Shortly after JC and I were engaged JC’s mom (hence forth known as Val) threw us an engagement party. I’ve since learned that traditionally it’s the brides parents that throw the party – but Val offered to do it almost as soon as we announced our plans, my family lives in Edmonton, Alberta (which is pretty much on the other side of the country) and frankly… we’re not very traditional people (except when we are.) My little guide here is a blend of personal experience and things I’ve picked up along the way both before and after. Hopefully it’s helpful to you even if you don’t live in Toronto, but really, feel free to reach out if you have any questions, I’d be happy to help. Things to think about: A vegan engagement party is not that much different than any other party, with a few small exceptions (that you might want to ignore anyway). 0. Do you want an engagement party. Do you want a party? If no, cool! There is nothing saying you have to have an engagement party. If yes, your adventure continues. 1. Who are you inviting? There is…

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