Product Review: theotherstraw

bamboo utensils and straws with a cloth pouch

Reducing waste is a process. I finally started composting when I found out that Saint Paul has a free drop off spot, and I recently welcomed a bidet into my life. So when the co-founder of theotherstraw reached out to me about reviewing their bamboo utensils, I happily took them up on the offer.

Theotherstraw is an Australian company that initially only offered bamboo straws, but as you can see above, they’ve since expanded their line to include utensils as well as coconut bowls. They chose bamboo because it grows quickly and is incredibly environmentally-friendly. The products are organic, dishwasher safe, and once you’re done with them (in several years, most likely), you can compost them.

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3 Vegan-Friendly Spots for a Special Occasion in the Twin Cities

Fig + Farro’s Beet Medallions

Whether you’re celebrating a birthday, anniversary, or merely the fact that it’s Friday, the three restaurants in this post have not disappointed me. I’ll include some honorable mentions at the end, but I wanted to focus on the fancier spots in town. Reservations are always recommended.

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Dinner at Fig + Farro

mushroom ravioli topped with veggies and greens
Mushroom Parcels

Fig + Farro is a fully plant based restaurant offering seasonal dishes for lunch, dinner, and weekend brunch. While it’s a little hit or miss for me, overall I’ve enjoyed several dishes there with attentive service provided.

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Vegan Pizza in the Twin Cities

Vegavore at Parkway Pizza

The Twin Cities offers a wide variety of vegan pizza options. This is a list of where I’ve been and what I’ve had. The restaurants range from sit-down table service to quick-serve casual. The brand of vegan cheese varies among the restaurants.

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Vegan Options at Hamburguesas El Gordo

Hamburguesas El Gordo has two locations with a third one on the way. The menu board lists vegan tacos either in a flour or corn tortilla shell. They also sometimes have vegan burgers; they didn’t have them at my first visit but they did at the second visit.

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Review: Pig Out Pigless Pork Rinds

four bags of pig out vegan pork rinds

A little over a year ago, Outstanding Foods released their line of Pig Out Bacon Chips, and I’m hooked on the vegan cheddar flavor (check out my review). The bacon chips are mushroom based, and now they’ve released a line of vegan pork rinds that have a base of rice and pea protein.

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No Buy Update

I’m two weeks into my low/no buy January, and I still have the itch to dine out pretty frequently. Through this challenge, I’ve started paying more attention to the triggers that make me want to go out to eat, which is basically anything and everything. But it’s also felt great to see more money in my bank account, which will help keep me motivated to stick with it.

I thought I’d use this post as a way to share some small things that save me money, so read on for some of my favorite personal care products and also a fun budget-friendly gift idea.

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Meal Prepping with The Simply Vegan Cookbook

The Simply Vegan Cookbook surrounded by mason jars and a bowl of vegan dhal

As I mentioned in my No Buy January post, I’ve done more meal prepping in the first 6 days of January than I think I did in all of 2019. One of the many, many benefits to this is that I’ll actually use my cookbooks! I’m fortunate to have several talented friends who have released an assortment of cookbooks, and I love supporting them. However, I admittedly have not been great about utilizing said cookbooks.

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Plant Based Birthday Freebies

During most of my 30s, I haven’t been big on celebrating my birthday, but the number of freebies available has given me a good excuse. Many local establishments offer free dessert, but there are a few other treats to enjoy. And of course, there are chains with vegan options.

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New Year = No Buy

It’s a new year, a new decade, and I know several people who are using this as a chance to do a reset in their lives, whether going plant based for Veganuary, cutting out sugar, exercising more, etc.

Personally, I’ve delved into a no buy January. With a 10-day trip to Ireland coming up in April, I want to make sure I have enough to freely experience whatever I’d like to while I’m there. I’m fortunate to have very low living expenses, but dining out and going to the theater are my vices, and I needed to put myself in check.

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