VEGFEST Starts in 12 Hours…

This must be what a bride feels like before the wedding day. All the planning, talking, excitement…. one big day and in a few hours it’s over. I picture myself looking over the Greenway tomorrow at 5pm as people filter out, tables get folded up and feeling a little pang of sadness — though luckily, unlike most weddings, we will get to do it again next year.

My hope is the day will leave a positive impression in people’s minds. A day they went out with their families, friends and dogs, learned about all of the talent that we have right here in our own city. That there are like-minded people who want to work toward sustainability, organic and whole foods, and fostering community and supporting local businesses.

For those of you coming to Vegfest (and how I hope you are!), here is some last-minute info:

  • The Save the Kales! table will be part of the Livelocal table. I will likely not be at the table most of the day, so feel free to come find me and say hello! I’m serious, I want to meet you and see you.
  • I will have t-shirts for sale! They are gorgeous, soft, nice-fitting, made in the USA and printed by a local vegan-owned screen printer, Bird Apartment. 
  • PARKING IS FREE! Meters and city lots are FREE!!! Don’t be alarmed if you find something stuck to your windshield when you get back to the car – it may be a paper saying “On a normal day, this would be a parking ticket but Vegfest is Awesome so you parked for free today!”
  • Maps of the fest layout will be available to pick up!  There are 19 different zones (holy moly!) to help you navigate through the tables and tents.
  • Speakers, Cooking Demos and live Music all day! In between on the eating and shopping, you can watch and listen to some awesome stuff. GO HERE FOR A SCHEDULE.
I hope I can sleep tonight!
See you soon. Biggest hugs to all of you. xoxo
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(LIVE)LOCAL AND VEGAN: Community Events and Black Forest Deli!

Check out Bethlehem, Pennsylvania on facebook for more photos of this fun night!

If you are, or know, a local restauranteur – please understand that while veg folks don’t make up the majority of the  population, there are a lot of us. And there are a lot of folks that eat options that happen to be vegetarian or vegan if they are offered.

Also, veg*ns talk about food A LOT. A LOT. All the time. And when it’s discovered that there is a local place with tasty, veg food, word spreads fast and people will flock.

Which is why I, quite frankly, lost my head when I heard that the pierogies at Black Forest Deli were VEGAN.

If you’re new to the blog, let me explain: Pierogies have always been a staple in my life. They are my  number one nostalgic “comfort food”. As local lore has it, my favorite dream was when I was trapped inside a giant pierogi and had to eat my way out. My cat is named “Pierogi”.  I have a great deal of deep-rooted love for those little potato pockets of bliss.

Last week, Alison and I were working the livelocal* table for an event, and got some of the tasty Black Forst Deli creations for dinner, pierogies included!

Pierogies from Black Forest Deli! Potato, Sauerkraut, and CHERRY! Hearts aflutter!

Hello, I'm Jaime K and I'm the HAPPIEST LADY IN THE LAND!

We also got some delicious borsch which we ate later that evening around a fire in my yard, all cozied up in borrowed hoodies and life philosophies. And THIS wonderful salad. Vica (“Vee-kah”) the owner just piled a bunch of delicious veggies and herbs on top of each other, AND included avocado for bonus points.

I ate this and turned into Wonder Woman.

 The great thing about Bethlehem is that you hardly ever hear of competitive attitudes, even among folks in the same businesses. Everyone just seems so happy to live in a place that has an always-increasing community vibe!

When folks came to our livelocal* table to buy a raffle ticket (for $2 you can win AWESOME prizes – seriously awesome, like a free night in a B&B, a helicopter ride around the LV, a Save the Kales! gift card, etc etc etc…) they got to try a sample of some of my food! I had nothing left by the night’s end!

Thumbs up, George and Kelly!

Save the Kales! pizza is healthy and kid-friendly!

Seriously, LOOK at that face.

Surprise visit from this handsome fellow!

Aside from running a great deli with tasty and healthy food, Vica also began a networking group for small business owners in the Lehigh Valley. Earlier this week, we met at Sophistikate to get to know one another. Everyone has been a wealth of information for a new business lady like myself.

Sophistikate hosts Small Business Owners meeting.

More photos under the cut!

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LIFE IS GOOD: Guest Post by Yvonne

This came to me about two weeks ago from a lovely lady I just got to know better in recent months. Yvonne is an amazing woman that devotes any time she can to supporting and promoting what she believes in, be it a business, band, organization, etc… and loves doing it with her whole heart. For example, she books shows, will provide an out of town band with a place to stay, make sure they get homecooked food, promote their show to no end, and then sort of shrug and say “I just like doing it”. 

Yvonne put this online for her friends to read, and I loved it and asked if I could repost it here. Reprinted with Permission.

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a year ago, i was in whitehall living in a fancy apt complex. i had a washer, a dryer, a dishwasher and a patio. there was a clubhouse with a pool and a gym. my silver chrysler voyager didn’t have a scratch on it. i was working full time, raising my children and still dealing with the decision to leave their father. i walked into a place and was invisible. i was sad.

today, i live in a run down apt with drafty windows and it rains in my living room at least once a week. (my upstairs neighbors don’t know how to use a damn shower.) there’s construction in the lot in front of my building and it shakes and rattles my tiny home. my van is officially a “hooptie” now- dented on all sides, rusted, busted windshield and the tape deck is broken. my job moved me to nights and i have to stay up with my kids all day.

but i’m not sad anymore.

and even though i beat myself up and ask a lot of questions, i’m confident and strong. my children are taken care of, my job is done when i punch out every morning, my car is paid off and even though its noisy and drippy sometimes, my home is clean and cozy. i help the people and movements that are important to me- that have helped me. i’ve made friends. i walk into a place and am greeted with hugs and smiles.

i did it.

and i’m proud of the friends that i’ve made. even though it wasnt that long ago, i remember hearing about KIDS (“KIDS” is a band) when it was just an idea in bear’s mind. i remember the first time i met him and he showed me that david de la hoz video with dan smith in it. since then, i’ve started booking shows and i havent fucked up yet. kids has formed, toured and put a tape out. they get love all over. its been amazing to have grown in my own way alongside such good guys. and now, i’m even booking dan smith!

 this might be hard to follow because i tend to ramble and say a million things at once but hopefully you can see the paralells here and how everything comes around full circle. and maybe you’ll be able to sense the pride that i feel in having the courage to live my life the way i want. also, i’m so fucking grateful to the people i’ve met who have been encouraging, supportive and had my back through it all.

thanks.

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Yvonne, thanks for the reminder that we all have so much more than we think and we can make our own lives and our own happiness.