So….. as I mentioned a long while ago, Marlowe ate eggs. I’m still trying to process how I feel about it. I’m not mad. I’m not happy. It’s not some life changing or world stopping event, but it is a pretty big happening in her life— or maybe more mine too. I wrote about it forever ago, but I did know this day would come (the day she asks for eggs) and I did know what I would do about it. As a vegan, I’m not a super strict vegan. I mean, I am in the sense that I definitely wont eat animals, but I mean, theres a push and a pull and a balance with all things in life, and trying to be super strict about everything all the time does no good for me (or for you). I’m more the passive type– not peta over here, just trying to do whats best for me and my family– and if people join in: awesome. But I’m not out to convince anyone or anything that they should be vegan– ever. Unless they ask me my tips of course, in which case, I’m happy to share, but there are no unsolicited lectures from me, even if you’re eating steak in front of me. Yes, it’s obvious that not killing things isn’t nice—but there are other (maybe larger or long term) issues at hand. And we could all make a huge positive impact on our Earth by eating less (or no) meat. Do I think the world will stop eating meat? Nope, not really, but I do think we should at least try to make a change in how we do it. You know, I say it all the time, but do what you can, when you can. Life really doesn’t have to be all or nothing, but little changes can make a big impact.
I don’t think eating eggs is wrong. Sort of. I don’t think eating eggs from local friends and farmers is wrong. I do think factory farmed eggs are wrong. Very wrong. For me, my top reason for choosing the vegan lifestyle has changed through the years (I know I’ve gone over the list of reasons to why I choose to be vegan— four years ago), but one of my main problems is that we are in fact killing and starving our world by factory farming. The damage is undeniable. Is eating meat wrong? Debatable. Is factory farming wrong? Totally, 100% hands down yes. I’m of course hesitant to say ‘eating meat is okay’ because I personally would never do it and I don’t love the idea of it, but I do think there is a better way to go about livestock farming than the system that is currently the norm in this country. You know, I know it’s not necessarily our own faults— its becoming increasingly easier to never give a second thought to what we buy. There are a million and a half movies, books, articles that can explain it all a lot better than I ever can– but simply put: the things that we grow (livestock and plants both) and how we grow them will make or break how our earth and bodies function. I keep stopping myself from going (typing) too far into the issue– but we’re chopping down our Earth to grow crops to feed factory farmed animals, instead of humans. Why? To keep up with meat demands for our own country— all while we have developing countries literally starving to death. Our system does not work. Our system needs to change. Do I think it will in my lifetime? Nah, not really, but I try to be optimistic that one day it will. Little steps.
So, anyway, back to the point: eggs. Like, I’ve stated in my faq section, I’m okay with eggs— when they come from a happy chicken in a happy home and not living damaged lives in a dark box. In fact, we’ve talked about getting our own chickens… for a while… and then one day we just took the plunge, set up a coop, and did it. Outside of the free eggs, chickens are a great natural compost and pest control for our garden and adorable pets for our space. We’ve now had our chickens for about two months or maybe a little less, and we’re in love. They’re easier than our dogs, cheap as hell, and cute as can be. They’re huge now, they kind of just grew over night, but we still love them.
Anyway. Did I make a choice for Marlowe to not eat eggs? Totally. It just made sense. It’s just one of those things that would have been too complicated to explain to Marlowe “you can eat some eggs, but only some, and chances are not whats at the store.” It’s just easier to be explain, “yes, we’re both vegan” than to make unnecessary exception for some things. Ya know? We had/have no reason or need to actually eat eggs…. or I didn’t at all until I got sick. So out of pure obvious convenience I kept the girl egg-free. We like to keep Marlowe knowledgable about food. I mean, outside of kid shows and project runway, the girl’s favorite shows are cooking shows. She is pretty savvy in the spice section and in the fruit and vegetable garden. And I like to make it a point for her to know where her food comes from. If it’s not growing in our garden, I want her to understand the many, many hands and hours of work that went into the food that ends up on her plate. Someone had to prep the land, sow the seeds, tend to the growth, look for pests, harvest everything, pack everything, wash everything, load everything, and transport everything to our grocery shelves. Hours and hours of work to bring one vegetable to our plate. It’s not some magical thing that appears in front of us. There are real people working hard, very hard, to bring us the food we buy. And many of those people are struggling themselves or have families that are starving because we want low and cheap prices. And then let’s not even get into organics vs. non organics and the farmers (and children farmers) who are being poisoned from round-up and other chemicals every single day. Okay, I’m getting way to deep and serious (again), so I’ll step back, but farming is no joke. I want her to understand our system and whats wrong with it. I want her to know that the way we treat food is important. And that we can make little steps of improvement by proper eating practices. She’s four. I get it, there’s a point of understanding that is easily passed. But at a basic level, she get’s it. And so, when the topic of eggs comes up and I offer, yes, you can eat eggs, but let me find some from a friend first—- well, it’s not some completely insignificant moment thats happening. And without getting into the dark side of factory farming with the kiddo, I work hard to make sure she understands as many aspects as she can and that there are cared for eggs and bad eggs— healthy happy chickens that make healthy happy eggs.
She’s turned down eggs a few times before. I never push it of course. But if the topic comes up, I’ll mention that it’s okay, as long as she understands. She always gets super excited (like, it’s adorably cute) when she finds there is a vegan dessert option for her (even mostly when it’s fruit). And she get’s bummed at birthdays when she finds out the cake is not vegan (though, honestly, she doesn’t even eat cake anyway). But for whatever reason, one day when she and I were sitting together at dinner, the idea came up, and she said yes. I said okay, but that I would have to find some first.
I asked on Facebook and a few minutes later, my friend Carina offered us eggs— tiny happy eggs from her quail, Kelly. Not very long after I found myself watching Alex fry up quail eggs with a pinch of salt and Marlowe standing there, happily eating them. She liked them, like I knew she would. She’s tried them. She likes them. But in the end of it all, it’s gone by like nothing ever happened. Will she eat more eggs? She didn’t really up until this past week, when I started eating them too. But will eggs be a daily or weekly thing? No, not necessarily, but we’ll see what happens when our ladies start laying.
And for me? Honestly, silly enough, they gross me out. Every attempt to eat an egg in the past 13+ years or so has left me squirmy. Sorry in advance for this, but two words come to mind, every single time, without fail: chicken period. But here I am, now, eating eggs. Do I love them? No. Am I thrilled? No, not at all. But I am grateful to know that my body can at least process eggs— and in this time of malnourishment and much needed healing, they help. We’ll see what happens when my gut heals, but for now, whether they gross me out or not, I’m doing it.
Hooray rant-y farm rambles and chicken periods! And our adorable chickens!
-I originally wrote this post before I even went to india (long time ago, I know), but wasn’t in the mood to come off sounding rant-like and such. I came back to it this week and re-wrote is according to our new egg situation. I feel like I should sign off this post saying, whether you eat eggs or not, please, please make sure the eggs you’re buying are coming from a happy farm and not a sad dark factory. A quick inquiry at a farmer’s market or with friends should provide at least a few happy egg options in your area!
-I’m curious to know if you guys would be interested in the recipes I’ve been eating with eggs lately? I’m on the fence about posting any, because I don’t want to endorse eggs too much, but I am tempted to post them, because with the right eggs, they are good, healthy recipes that have been keeping me alive this month.
-Our brown hen is named Ella and the white one is Betty aka Little Haiti— but Betty might actually be a rooster— so we’re heading to the farm tomorrow to confirm and maybe swamp him/her out if needed– when we picked Betty out of the coop, they did sort of look at her suspiciously and say, “she should be good, but if not, just bring her back.” We’ll see— she is sort of bossy.
Hope you guys had a great weekend!