Hi, my name is Jessica and Conveganence is my brand new business. (To learn more about the business, click here.) I live in a 150-year-old house in Oak Park, IL with my husband, our 2 rescue dogs, my parrot, and maaaaybe even a few ghosts. 🙂

If I don’t sound odd enough to you already, here’s more: I’ve been a vegetarian off and on since I was 9 years old. In grade school, I was the kid eating tofu and sprouts in the cafeteria while the cool kids ate Lunchables. In middle school, I wore a sweatshirt that said “Teenage Mutant Ninja Pony” and collected signatures on petitions to stop animal testing. (Yes, I was made fun of, on the off-chance you were wondering.) So clearly animals have always been important to me, and animal welfare was the main reason I became a vegetarian. About three years ago, I became interested in veganism. The more I learned about a plant-based diet, the more strongly I felt that the world would be a better place if people ate fewer animal products. Also, I became aware of a plethora of other benefits that come from eating vegan; both for human health and the environment. The more I learned, the more I wanted to share my newfound knowledge with others.

Unfortunately, not everyone was as receptive to this life-changing advice as I anticipated. Some examples of comments I received:

“That sounds disgusting/bland/boring. What can you eat as a vegan? Air?”

“Sounds interesting but I don’t have time to make a recipe that requires 30 ingredients and 2 hours of prep time.”

“Is bacon vegan? No? NOT INTERESTED.”

I gave quite a bit of thought to every comment I received (even the mean ones), and realized that in order to convince people to eat fewer animal products, I had to make recipes that are delicious, convenient, and inexpensive to prepare. I also had to let go of any judgment I had of people who choose to eat meat. Ethical vegans will disagree with me on this, but I think progress is more important than perfection. After all, if everyone gave up meat for just one meal per week, it would have the same environmental impact as taking half a million cars off the road. That’s a pretty big difference for one small act! Imagine if you made an even bigger change…like eating 5 vegan meals per week to make up for all the others who aren’t hip to the amazing benefits of a plant-based diet. Maybe you’re not ready to go that far, but you’ll definitely make an impact if you are!

The main objective of Conveganence is to take the guesswork out of plant-based eating, and cooking meals at home in general. I figured the easier and more pleasant it is for people to try plant-based meals, the more likely it will be for them to make positive changes in their diets. Also, a portion of the proceeds goes directly to help animals and people in need. How often can you say your dietary choices actually help anyone?

The Conveganence Blog is designed to fill the gap between the meal plans (which consist of 5 meals per week–dinners that can typically converted to leftovers for lunch) and any additional vegan meals you might want to eat; such as breakfasts, desserts, appetizers, and more complicated meals for the weekend. I will also post cooking tips, interesting articles about plant-based diets, and I’ll throw in some DIY and crafting projects for good measure. I know that has nothing to do with vegan eating, but I just can’t help myself!

Thanks for stopping by, and I hope you like the blog!

~ Jessica

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