Saturday, July 24, 2010

*git yer buttons here!*

vegan buttons, originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
a sheer metric ton of cute 1" vegan buttons (see picture there are way more styles than that but you'll just have to come see for yourself! when we open!) came this week by teeny tiny tantrums. i spaced on making buttons for the shop to giveaway but that's next on my ever growing list of things to do/buy/pick-up. some very cute coffee cozies and aprons came via flapper girl and also some awesome recycled tee shirt crocheted scrubbies that are hands down the best i have ever seen.

in the home front, we went to the fair on thursday and are going one more time just the mr. and me before it closes so we can go on the rides lyric was too chicken to go on as my ride buddy lol. the girls had a blast and we ate way too much greasy food. yay! shawn and i saw inception earlier in the week {one of the best movies of modern history! i can't say enough great things about it, so go see if for yourself to find out what all the buzz is about}.

today we are making vegan tamales and enchiladas. shawn and i were a well-oiled kitchen machine busting out both items in record time. whoever says tamales are too much work needs a punch in the throat. they are SO worth it, and come's not that much work sheesh! it's called "cooking" lol. {slow food movement--- pbbbbbltttttt someone just made that up and is trying to sell a book and make a mint!}

happy saturday and i will blog about the tamales tomorrow, letting you know how they turned out. {i can tell you right now...delicious!}

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

*never a dumb question*

bulletin board , originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
here, in q&a format are a few questions asked recently in real life and via the internet about what the hell we are doing. :)

{for those just tuning in shawn and me are going to open an all vegan shop above sugar plum vegan cafe in midtown sacramento. the name is never felt better {vegan shop}. the website will be redirected to a new url and is getting a spruce job to reflect the new direction . i am really excited and distracted so i am going to try extra hard to keep blogging through the process! it ought to be fun!}

Q: you are going to have a store with all your handmade stuff in it?
A: no, my personal line of accessories will be available {i still gotta craft, yo!}, but i am so lucky to know so many talented people filling a store up with cruelty free and cute as hell stuff won't be too hard. not only will we carry handmade one of a kind goods for men and women, we will also do some vegan grocery staples, cookbooks and other household things that every self-respecting vegan should have ;p

Q: do you buy from only vegans?
A: i wish, but of course not silly. some are, some aren't. some of my good friends are omni's. and most of the crafters and artists are personal friends of mine so if i could turn out just one of them who isn't already i would consider that a personal triumph. HINT HINT HINT, personal friends!

Q: you called yourself the "vegan gift shop". are you kidding me?
A: no. i kid you not. i predict when you are done snarfing up some sugar plum vegan food you will come up the stairs and buy yourself a commemorative herbivore clothing company tee shirt, lollibomb "me so honey" vegan massage oil and a bag of eco-planet cheezy crackers because that's how you roll.

Q: what will i find in your store, really?
A: awesomeness. pure awesomeness. but keep in mind that the awesomeness you will find at my shop will be devoid of animal cruelty and suffering making it awesomeX10. so, vegan women's and mens clothing, accessories like buttons, belts and hair stuff, animal and AR related jewelry, animal companion accessories and v-dog food. bath and body stuff such as soaps, lotions and fragrance, vegan cookbooks-books-zines, paper goods and grocery and snaky items.

Q: will vegetarians be welcome?
A: everyone is welcome. especially veggies! although they will have to sign an enforceable promissory note to fully convert to veganism or they can only look through the window. LOL JUST KIDDIN'. {or am i? mwahahahahaha} putting all seriousness aside, these items are 100% vegan and 100% suitable for EVERYONE.

Q: i thought you were going to change your name?
A: i thought so, too. i think we are going to keep the other name we were tossing around for shawn's sustainable vegan skateboard company LOL. {our next business venture!}

Q: you have been saying you were going to get the vegan cookzine done for the past two years. what's the hold up?
A: life, laziness, shawn going gluten free and us having to redo some of our family classics. but don't think we have forgotten it, and it will come out in print soon. oh yes, it will be. no excuses...

Q: what's the new website info?
A: that is TBA. check back for more info, and like i said i will be photo documenting our process of before and after to the shop and sneak peak merchandise here on this blog. check back for more info soon.

so, that concludes the question and answer portion of the blog. :) i am certain i forgot some important information, but for a gal who is writing through a class 3 migraine i think got what i need out.

happy tuesday!

Monday, July 19, 2010

*lost weekend, found workweek*

calm waters, originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
this lost weekend (some me time with my sister exploring n. california back roads, casinos and the yuba river, pictured above) gave way to a BUSY found work week. this is the week of the three bigger distribution entities needed to get some of the grocery, vegan dog food and cook books in the store. the v-dog people are local: a sacramento company which sells all over the US--and our three dogs are thriving on it. awesome stuff...pick a bag up with me when you stop by the store.

oh! and orders have started rolling in, like amazing vinyl bags and wallets on saturday, and another today of herbivore clothing co tee shirts, with two email confirmations others were on the way! i have a running vendor list that makes me very excited, i am hoping everyone else gets excited too lol! over the next couple weeks of painting and feathering my retail nest, as it were, and the more orders that come in i will be doing previews of what to expect from never felt better {vegan shop}. there is still really so much to get done in a relatively short amount of time but i have shawn, more help from friends that i know what to do with, and a vision so i feel half-way there in my mind :) but for right now it is in a corner of my living room until the space is ready.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

*sweet holy cucumber*

sweet holy cucumber, originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
{warning this is the post in which i drone on and on about a cucumber.}

today is double digits, and i kind of spaced on the garden thinking the soaking last night would last. {it didn't i had wilty everything...tsk tsk tsk on me.} when usually the cucumber leaves are like huge umbrellas and i have to hunt for the cuc's which is part of the fun, some extra wilty leaves led this *thing* to catch my eye.  tucked among the vines of the watermelon plants,  it's gotta be the biggest cucumber i have ever seen, and i thought the others harvested were big ones already!

man, i should have known and entered this bad boy in our fair--i think i would have a ribbon winner on my hands--literally.

enjoy my cucumber freakazoid. i know i am TOTALLY tickled pink over the mere sight...but i think i am 75% 12 yr. old boy. ha!

{you were warned about the prattling about a cucumber, so i don't wanna hear it!}

in NFB news, i am totally stoked to have a GANG of herbivore tee shirts en route. also, there will be held vegan belts, lollibomb bath and body, bread and badger {etched with vegan logos} pint glasses, and so so so much more. it's crazy! CRAZY i tell you! that was just a sneaky peek. {there will be many, many more of those...that i can promise.}

happy thursday and i hope you have some crazy weekend plans that will make me jealous as all hell. enjoy :)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

*garden fresh quinoa pilaf*

garden fresh quinoa pilaf, originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
in urban gardening news: today we had a cornucopia of harvesting goodness! we got chard, squash, yellow cherry tomatoes, carrots and cucumbers. shawn was craving quinoa so he made a quick pilaf using everything but the cucumber in it, with an addition of garbanzos, garlic and onion. i feel like a million bucks eating such rich, colorful and nutritious vegan food. it was like a bowl of vitamins! {this is a perfect warm or cold weather meal as it can be served fresh off the stove, or chilled. it's delicious in any form!}

in never felt better {vegan shop} news: for the past two days i have focused on following up on emails, placing orders and taking care of invoices. our printer is on the fritz and i need to print and fax two of the bigger distribution companies {like for the food and books}. so, if we get a replacement printer so it can be done by weeks end. {some stuff has even shipped already (!!!) and i am freaking out and can't wait to have them in my hot little hands.}

so happy tuesday, all...hope your week is shaping up good {and busy}!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

*mental health day*

flowers, originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
i am so ditching vending at 2nd saturday so i can experience some 2nd saturday with the family. it's all good--i called in and everything and some lucky bastard on the waiting list is going to have their day made. it's a win-win situation in my book. {i do what i can...}

along with sleeping in, so far this day has consisted of flax pancakes, fresh flowers, farmers market produce, fresh-from-my-own-garden produce, vegan tamales, swimming and family time. {i can't really complain. it's my kind of mental health day.}

behind the scenes it's trying to decide on two colors that will compliment the rooms, the dark wood floors and brightening factors of the new space. this takes more time than i thought. {actually that is a lie, i know exactly how long it takes. i can't make up my mind on the two rooms that need painting here at our house, never getting past the staring at paint chips stage. but, since painting the new spot is mandatory i think i will coordinate the two with the leftover paint from the shop IN the house as well and cut two carrots with one knife. GENIUS.} so far i have narrowed it down to a couple, three combos. plus i need an accent color or two for other things that need to be painted, like shelves. somehow i have to spruce up a standing vintage brass spinner that would perfect for the vegan held belts i am going to carry. i can't decide to paint or bring back the brass color, it's pretty rusted. {oh, if all my decisions were this hard: do i PAINT the display spinner or leave it natural? haha}

i can't wait to start previewing what's to come! the few things i have bought for the shop are nothing less than AWESOME and i feel like things are coming together, which is welcome. {this is really happening!}

happy saturday! i hope you are having your own version of a mental health day, whatever that may be. {peace}

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

*vegan food is love*

they say compassion begins on your plate, and they would be correct. but i will say the passion and love that got someone to go get the ingredients needed for what another someone is craving, come home and make & serve it to said craving person....well....that is really special.

yesterday it was biscuits and gravy. after hearing me grumble about not having the things to make what i was craving, the mr. ran down to the coop and grabbed some ingredients. then shawn quietly whipped up some daiya cheesy biscuits and a delicious tempeh gravy with a side of mixed greens. gimme a heavy plate of home-made down-home grub any day over anything. my breakfast turned into a delicious brunch and afternoon snack, too :)

now if i can get melissa to offer biscuits and gravy as a staple on her menu i would truly be in vegan heaven when we open in the fall. crisp mornings with a heapin' bowl of B-n-G is totally what i am talking about. {working above a vegan cafe will have it's total advantages. there is nothing worse than working out where there is NO FOOD. all i will have to do is sashay downstairs for vegan-goodness and coffee. lots and lots of coffee. should i pinch myself? am i dreaming? lol}

speaking of never felt better, i have made my first orders for stock! sneaky peaks coming later on...really cute stuff for sure. it's a lot of work, kinda like a full time job LOLOLOLOLOLOLOL i crack me up. everyone has been so nice, and positive for us. that is what matters, at the end of the day. i also am working on a website revamp from the same gals over at aeolidia. if i can pull off the cost, it will be a very, VERY nice upgrade. {i am in the wrong business...web design is crazy expensive!}

happy weds and i hope you are working toward some of your goals today too. it's supposed to be a cooler day, only lower 90's at best so right there it's working out for me big time. {my sympathies to my east coast friends...this heat wave is no laughing matter. and imagine wearing a fur coat during it all! don't forget about the animals, too. everyone hydrate!}

Monday, July 05, 2010

*happy 4th!*

fountain, originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
it's the same every year: i am a 4th of july hater until later in the afternoon when the grill gets fired up, and then i cave and go get a few key fireworks for the girls. who can resist some sparklers and some fountains, hmmmm? i guess it's like that for most holidays and me, i disassociate the meaning of the holiday with all the bells and whistles and get sucked in. {who doesn't like lighting shit on fire and watching it blow up and burn?}

yesterday, shawn went on a mini-skate tour of northern california with some friends and the girls and i cleaned up and swam leisurely all day until he got back. {he can't swim he just got a new tattoo, which i love btw.}

i had some time to clear out my head and when i did my dream team vendor list grew by a few names. i mentally flipped through the pantone catalog and picked out some colors for the walls and featured where the furniture and fixtures are going to go. if you can visualize it, you can do it, right? :) we did some business scoping on saturday night: ducked out to check out the non-2nd saturday night scene at the cafe and there was quite bit of foot traffic, happily. the golden bear was bumping before 10 and rick's desert diner {for the over 50 set, apparently. for as long as i have lived in sacramento i have never known a soul who ate there. unless you needed a place to take your out of town elderly gramma or something...} was busy, which is a good sign. i saw groups of touristy folks leave there, cross the street and look intrigued by the cozy outside and warm glow of the fairy lights of sugar plum vegan cafe...maybe we can turn some ricks-folks out to veganism with some good ol' fashioned outreach. people don't know what they are eating, you know? :) information is power! cruelty is not delicious, creamy or sweet. ahimsa IS.

happy monday!

Thursday, July 01, 2010

*can see clearly now...*

new glasses, originally uploaded by neverfeltbetter.
wow got my new glasses {love them in their cute shape, red color and little blingbling happening...} and everything is just so much crisper. lol.

so i say to myself, "self, let's start cracking on the business plan. you know the one you need to produce to the landlord? you know, the one you need to have handy for a legitimate business if you ever need to borrow more money etc etc? yeah. THAT ONE. get going and get it done!"

now that i have no more excuses {my wrist aches, my head aches, my shoulder aches...} and am feeling good i compiled what info i had up to now in the first draft. sent it to a few people to review to see if i make any lick of sense {or not}. waiting for feedback.

shawn is home helping me with getting stuff done again--i love his swing shifts when he works them. so far he has run to the post office, target and entertained jasper while i tip-type out our potential future on paper. gotta love him for being supportive.  {whadda guy.  any help is appreciated, even at the smallest level! seriously. extracting what's in my head onto paper with this thyroid induced brain fog is some kind of feat, but i think the last med change is working because i *feel* better than a few months ago.  huzzah for little victories!}