Monthly Archives: September 2014

Goodbye, Hello


It’s hard to know where to begin.  This is a scary yet liberating, bittersweet post that I’m about to write.  It doesn’t totally feel like an end, though in a major way it is, and the new beginning I have in front of me, while fresh and full of possibilities, feels daunting.

Which means this must be the right thing to do, right?  The best decisions I’ve made in my life have always been preceded by a moment of doubt and a twinge of fear, that queasy, uneasy feeling of standing on the precipice of solid, familiar ground and stepping out into the unknown, bolstered only by the faith that you’ll find footing once again.

So here it is:

This is the last post I will publish on GF in the City.

A lump just rose in my throat and my eyes started to fill as I typed that last sentence.  So much hard work went into creating this site and the content here.  There was a moment in time when I had molded it into just what I wanted it to be and I felt so much promise and excitement about how it would continue to grow.

But life certainly has a way of changing things, and there were moments along the way where I questioned the longevity of this site.  Some of these things were maybe a bit silly and finicky, but plagued me nonetheless.  For instance, if we ever were to leave this city, and especially if we ever wound up in the suburbs, how could I continue to write a blog that had me so pinned geographically?  Then my life took a turn nearly three years ago that made the conundrum of potentially being “GF in the City in the Suburbs” seem small: I became vegan.

Veganism changed everything for me.  It healed my body and opened my heart and eyes.  I struggled for a long time with sharing things that related to veganism or plant-based nutrition on this site, not necessarily because I was struggling with those things myself, but because this didn’t seem like the right place.  This is GF in the City.  Not GFV in the City.

I pushed through and shared pieces of my journey anyway, though more carefully and less frequently than I might have in a space where I’d felt more comfortable.  I was wary of people finding this site looking for information about gluten-free living and feeling blindsided by posts peppered with vegan ideology.  Don’t get me wrong, I am happy to share what I’ve learned and hope with all my heart that it reaches outside of the veggie audience—it’s just that living out my increasingly crunchy ways under a header that promised something else felt disingenuous.

Plus there is the problem that the majority of my recipe archive contains recipes that now conflict with my personal values and promote the use of ingredients that, for a plethora of health reasons, I could never recommend in good conscience, not even to my worst enemy.  While I considered it momentarily, it felt too painful to simply delete all of that content, all my hard work and photography, the stories of my life contained within.  But to leave it all meant that this would never be a vegan blog.

About a year or so ago I came across a comment somewhere.  A reader had linked to my Buffalo Chickpea Dip, saying something along the lines of “Great recipe, but she’s not vegan.  She uses eggs.”  I knew where the comment came from (a lot of my old recipes contain eggs and other decidedly un-vegan ingredients) and that it wasn’t personal, but it stung nonetheless.  But I am vegan! I wanted to shout through the screen.

As uncomfortable as it was in my first months as a vegan to accept that people were going to look at me differently, that I was going to wear a new and unfamiliar label, it felt downright bad as a veggie with a couple years under her (faux leather) belt to have that part of my identity questioned.  I am so proud of my values and feel immensely thankful every day to have found them.

Much like there came a point where the old leather living room set just had to leave our cruelty-free home, it’s now time for me to set myself up online in a 100% veg-friendly space.

So yes, this it the last post I will publish on GF in the City.  All the content will remain, so you’ll still be able to find your favorite recipes, and I will continue to publish comments and respond when able.

From here on out—and this is where it gets scary!—I will be writing and sharing recipes at Leaves of Kale.  As I’m writing this post, I keep looking at the blank space of this new site.  I can imagine what it might look like one day, but it’s unnerving to go from hitting publish on a site with a cushion of 175 posts, to putting those first lines of text on a quiet, stark white space.

I am excited, though.  I’m excited to share all the new things I’ve been making, the awesome vegan cookbooks I’ve found, the cruelty-free products that we use daily in our home.  I’m excited to be unapologetically crunchy and hopelessly hippie.  I’m excited to be making a fresh start.

Thank you so much for reading.  I hope you’ll come visit soon.