DESIGN YOUR LIFE: Kaitlyn from

This week’s DESIGN YOUR LIFE interview is with Kaitlyn, my dear friend and blogger for For those that have followed my Vegan Cleanse, you will remember Kaitlyn as my partner in crime who also gave up a bunch of animal and processed foods for three weeks. I am constantly inspired by her passion for food and cooking and I am happy to report she has rubbed off on me and I am more into cooking now than ever.

Below are 10 intentions she has for eating well and some great suggestions for the rest of us. My favorite intention she mentions is #10, not just because it is a great idea, but also becasue I am often lucky enough to enjoy her amazing meals (still dreaming about her veggie lasagna from a few weeks ago). I hope you gain as much from her tasty intentions as I do.

  1. I enjoy breakfast everyday. My favorite meal of the day is breakfast. I love breakfast so much because it’s the only time of the day that I can quietly think reflect on what the day has to bring. It’s a nice way to gradually move into the hustle and bustle of the rest of your day. I always look forward to breakfast and creating new meal options. After all, breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
  1. I stopped drinking coffee. My intention for a better life led to me quitting my morning cup of coffee. I found myself addicted to the caffeine boost. If I didn’t drink my morning cup I would feel extremely sluggish and out of sorts. Jess introduced me to a great tasting tea, with much less caffeine and it tastes better than coffee, which made it an easy transition.
  2. I plan my weekly meals in advance to cut back on waste. This is certainly an intention that I am still working at and still find myself wasting an apple here and there, but it is something that makes cooking at home more appealing. Each week I start by writing a grocery list of items that we frequently use or that we are out of. Then I think of meals that my boyfriend and I would like to have throughout the week and list the ingredients accordingly. I try to prepare meals that use perishables first, than move on to any dry or frozen foods. If I feel as though I won’t be needing certain vegetables or baked goods in the near future, I’ll chop and prepare them and put them in the freezer for later use.
  3. I make desserts special. I have a serious sweet tooth and there was a time that I would eat dessert every night after dinner. My intention is to make desserts an occasion, something special. I do this by finding recipes and waiting for the weekend to prepare something extra delicious to look forward to.
  4. I shop mainly at Trader Joe’s. In an effort to eat healthy and save money I have found Trader Joe’s to be a proverbial haven for grocery shoppers. Now that I have been shopping there for a while, I have amassed some favorites that I get excited for each week.

  1. I eat less meat and eat more vegetables. By reading books by authors Kathy Freston, Mark Bittman, and Michael Pollan I have been learning more about reasons why eating less meat is beneficial to the environment, the treatment of animals, and to my health. Although I haven’t completely taken meat out of my diet I have been trying to incorporate more vegetables and have started trying out new vegetarian recipes.
  2. I have go-to meals for the days that I don’t feel like cooking. Some days you just don’t feel like cooking, and for those days I like being prepared with easy go-to meals. These meals usually come from the pantry or the freezer, but are definitely healthy. It certainly helps not reverting back to fast food.
  3. I pack healthy snacks. Whenever I am away from home I like to pack healthy snacks like nuts, apples, or rice cakes so that when I am hungry I don’t have to eat junky snack food.
  4. I shop at the farmer’s market. In the spring and summertime I like to go to the farmer’s market to support local farmers. Not only is the produce fresh and seasonable, but it’s a great event to look forward to each week.
  5. I plan dinner parties for friends and family. I get great joy out of planning, preparing and entertaining guests with dinner parties. It’s a great alternative to going out to a restaurant or the bars because my friends and I don’t have very much money to throw around. Besides who doesn’t love a home-cooked meal shared amongst friends?

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  1. RissyKay

    So many great ideas. I love dinner parties! I am working a lot on #2 and #3 right now. Any chance you would be willing to share the great tasting tea you suggested? I don’t want to give up coffee totally, but I would like to cut back and drink some more tea. Thanks!

  2. Rachel

    A girl after my own heart. I love these tips and I actually follow most of them myself!

  3. EvaForeva

    What an awesome list! I have one cup of coffee every morning in hopes it would help my migraines. I am contemplating on quitting but it’s sooo hard.

  4. Kaitlyn

    Thank you for the sweet comments! The tea I drink every morning is Celestial Seasonings brand Honey Vanilla White Tea Chai.

  5. Jess Constable

    @ all: So glad you love Kaitlyn’s suggestions. I am so thankful to know her and get to see her live out her intentions all the time- she keeps inspiring me to be better and better about food and cooking.

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