When a person decides on a particular diet, a number of factors are considered. The decision influences the physical, spiritual, emotional, psychological and social well being of the person. Each person then must decide for his or herself how important and feasible each factor is for them. I try to do what I feel is best for me. I have chosen to be a vegetarian, not consume sugar, and eat fresh homegrown, homemade foods. But, school and work put restrictions on my efforts. So in order to survive, I found a way, a lifestyle, that would facilitate my wishes. I live with a crazy group of people and we share our resources and energy. I am happy with it. I would like to share with you our vegetarian lifestyle. So come on in. The first stop is the pantry where we store the goodies. We buy in bulk and do our own canning and freezing. These help cut food costs. The garden is an invaluable food source. It provides fresh food in its most nutritious and tasty form. Combining our muscle power and knowledge make it easier and more fun. The garden helps us get our serving of Vitamin D too. All of us love to eat and fortunately, most of us love to cook. So, we have lots of homemade stuff. Some of us get into the creative aspects, inventing new concoctions or trying old concoctions with new things. Others prefer to study up a bit and plan things out. There are a wide variety of foods to play with too. Grains and beans include: wheat, rye, masa, buckwheat, millet, cornmeal, kidney, garbanzo, pinto, navy, and soy beans, lentil, pea and peanut butter. The creative combinations are endless. Walnuts, almonds, sesame and sunflower seeds are rich nutrient sources we like to include in our diet. Three tablespoons of sesame compare with one cup of milk on a calcium to kcal ratio. You have to remember to chew them well or grind them. For wonderful flavors, herbs and spices we have in abundance. Whole seeds and fresh leaves. Kelp powder is an excellent salt substitute and food addition, especially for iodine. But our major cry is for vegetables. Salad is a must, fresh greens, spinach, sprouts, carrots and whatever else the garden has to offer. Ground sesame or nutritional yeast loaded with B vitamins and protein are great salad toppers. Dressings of garlic, spices, ground seeds and vegetables with oitl and vinegar are common. Fresh picked vegetables lightly steamed make a great lunch. John, Eric and Lisa prefer to stir fry the veggies with tamari and sprouts. Fruit, lots of it, nature’s energy, vitamin and mineral storehouse. I wish we had an even bigger fruit bowl. Robbie likes to mix up a little granola for breakfasts and snacking. Inside are oats, wheat flakes, sesame and sunflower seeds, nuts, coconut, spices and homemade applesauce to sweeten it up. Sprouts, yogurt and bread are big items. Since sprouts are seeds starting to grow, their nutritional content has increased considerably. Protein is even 2-4 grams per cup. Our favorites are alfalfa, mung, lentil and wheat. Looks like Serge is down for a late night inspection of his yummy yogurt. Yogurt and bread go really fast around here. The bread is homemade with whole wheat flour. Sometimes we add rye, oats, wheat berries, nuts or seeds. Adding soy flour would balance the amino acid ratio and leave a fuller protein. What we usually do though is complement in other ways. Sandwiches made with lentil spread, soy butter, pea soup or cheese make fine combinations – stuffed with sprouts and sweet carrots of course. But for some of u the peanut butter and sprout usual is heaven. When Serge cooks. We feast on the tortilla and bean combo with hot salsa and greens. Bob creates with garbanzo and bulgar. We all have our favorites. Robbie would live on carrots and peanut butter if she could. John and tofu, Lissy and crackers. But, Enough! It is dinner time everybody. A big salad, soup, broccoli, lasagna and hot bread tonight. Hope you enjoyed your visit.