Say hello to Miss February. This Vegan Beauty says she is just your average all-American dreamer. She works in charitable marketing, networking, sports and entertainment. She is working on a career with hosting and radio, while building a company of my own. Please help me welcome Miss February to the Sexy Bad Ass Family and learn more about @BrittainyTaylor
Where do you live and where are you from? I am from the North in Philadelphia, bounced around and recently moved to Ft Lauderdale/Miami by way of St. Thomas USVI; in Dec 2014 I’ll be a Nashville native.
What do you do for a living/profession? I’m your average all-American dreamer. I work in charitable marketing, networking, sports and entertainment. I am working on a career with hosting and radio, while building a company of my own.
What do you like to do for fun? Living. My life is sporadic; there’s always some new adventure or opportunity, some place new to travel, new cultures to immerse in, new heights to jump from, more people to meet, conversations to enjoy, foods to try, wines to sip. Life and the human experience is what I do for fun, and I do it well.
How long have you been vegan? I have been vegan for just under a year (March 2014)
Why did you become vegan? At some point while living in Miami, I became extremely unhappy with my internal self and my external image. I was a big ball of negative energy, burning the candle at both ends and polluting the world with my emissions. One day I stopped for self-awareness and really thought about what was causing my unhappiness: me. I wasn’t taking care of myself – physically, emotionally, mentally. I chose to take a journey back to self-love, and set challenges for myself. I became active; I started meditation and frequented church service again. For Lent, I challenged myself to 40 days vegan; and I never went back.
How was your transition? The transition was surprisingly easily for me. I grew up with a strong love for veggies thanks to Grandma’s garden and my Thai heritage. Living in St Thomas previously to the transition, I had already taken out meat (it was an imported commodity and many times it didn’t look..er…appetizing.) I had been accustomed to mostly fish and vegetables, and of course fresh fruits. What is the funniest misconception(s) that you have heard about vegans?
I also did a lot of research becoming vegan; I learned my blood type was the most compatible with the lifestyle style change. I became a “fan” of the lifestyle by following top sites, finding the area’s veg-friendly hot spots, and really learning to educate people on why plant-based foods made me happier, healthier, and more fulfilled. I’m a self-proclaimed foodie and I love cooking, and vegan became not a challenge but a welcoming adventure to my palate. Finding things to substitute, taking on raw cooking, making nut mylks and experimenting with flavors was such a joy. I actually love asking if things are vegan, specifically because I learned to love being aware of what was being served, what was in it, and how it was going to affect my body.
What is the funniest misconception(s) that you have heard about vegans? “So… you eat salads, basically.” When people hear the term “plant-based” they immediately envision me stuffing my face in a large bowl of green leaves like a rabbit. When I take my carnivorous friends to my favorite veg-friendly spots, I can never get over the deliciously surprised look on their faces when they realize what they’ve eaten contains not one animal product. Even better, when I cook or bake something and watch them indulge before they look over and say “this tastes just like…”. Vegans are so much more than salads, bro.
What is your Favorite thing(s) about being a vegan?
The adventure. I travel A LOT and my favorite thing is to explore the veg restaurants, the natural food stores, the local farmers markets. I am a bit of an extrovert as well, so another favorite is that I get to meet so many new people and learn their stories while enjoying the new meal. I love Vegan mom and pop shops; they are some of the most dedicated passionate chefs I have ever met and they are so excited to share their journey of a plant-based diet. Lastly, as I’ve mentioned early, I LOVE cooking and exploring the world of holistic cookery on my own. I follow some of the greats for inspiration: One Ingredient Chef, NomYourself, Mininalist Baker.
Also, I’ve started to LOVE pairing food challenges with physical challenges. For instance I went 21 Raw Vegan and paired it with 21 days of 3 mile runs; 12 day Banana Island cleanse and PureBarre; 14 day juicing and yoga. You really learn to love both the changes in your body and in your spirit.
What do you think makes a Sexy Bad Ass Vegan? One month into being vegan, and a woman stopped me at the entrance of a hotel to tell me how glowing beautiful I am – and that’s when I realized: I am unapologetically self-aware and self-disciplined. I truly believe challenging myself to this lifestyle ultimately lead to self-discovery. I am me, and will only have one chance to be me, so I need to be good to me. What I put is in glowing out of me. Being good to me helps me be good to others. There is nothing sexier than presence and self-awareness. I’m a black belt in botanical bodaciousness.
What is the best vegan dish that you make in your kitchen?
Oohhhh that’s a toughy so I‘ll give you a few: a family fav: Spaghetti Squash Lasagna, Raw Carrot Cake (recipe from Fully Raw Kristina) and Stir-Fry with Homemade Vegan XO Sauce (recipe from One Ingredient Chef). And I LOVE making these gluten-free vegan chocolate chip cookies (recipe from MinimalistBaker)
Also, I challenged myself to a juicing cleanse, and I have to say it was my favorite to wake up in the morning to a fridge filled with the produce and decide what concoctions I was putting together. I felt like a chemist!
What is the best Vegan Restaurant you have ever had the pleasure of eating at? Again, that’s a toughy (told you before I was a foodie!) Hm we could go by city? Ft Lauderdale: Green Bar & Kitchen; Miami: Choices Café; Naples: Cider Press Café; Philadelphia: Charlie Was a Sinner; Nashville: The Wild Cow, NYC: V Spot; Memphis: Imagine Vegan Café; London: Mildred’s; St. Thomas: Barefoot Buddha; So Cal: let’s be honest… wayyy too many
What advice do you have for those that are thinking of transitioning to a vegan lifestyle?
LOVE it. In fact, be IN LOVE with it. Consider not just the righteous for animals, or the health benefits, but the idea of truly learning something new for YOU. Research, learn the rules of thumb (“If you can’t read it, don’t eat it.” “If it’s made from a plant it’s good, if it’s made in a plant it’s not).
Get Creative with searching out restaurants. ASK QUESTIONS. Make friends with the owners and the pioneers of the lifestyle.
NEVER EVER apologize for your choice. People spend hundreds on pricey items, thousands on body altering surgery. Some smoke six packs or go to bars on weekends; some enjoy marathons or baking on Sundays. I’m Vegan. I practice it like a religion; it’s my favorite hobby; it’s my center om; it’s a personality trait.
Do you have a website to share with the BAV nation?
I am working on a new blog that should be up soon! Until then, you can find me on …