Happy Friday, everyone! Today we’re talking with the beautiful Anna of @abundantlifevegan. Like all of the people I’ve interviewed as of yet, I was drawn to Anna’s positive energy and healthy lifestyle. She’s also incredibly compassionate, genuine and, of course, inspiring!
INTERVIEW WITH ANNA…
Tell us a little bit about yourself!
Hi, I am Anna Cordova. I live in Durham, NC. I work full-time in Community Mental Health. I am the Program Coordinator for Intensive in Home Services (for children and adolescents) at B & D Behavioral Health. When not at work, my passions are yoga, working out, and of course cooking. I admit to being a bit of a fitness fanatic! I run, cycle, and lift weights in addition to practicing/ teaching yoga.
When did you go vegan? What was your “Aha” moment?
I went vegan in 2012. I was influenced first by seeing movies like Forks Over Knives and Fat, Sick, and nearly Dead. Then I read Will Tuttle’s book, The World Peace Diet—and I knew that going vegan was about so much more than health. It was about compassion, connection, awareness, kindness and making the world a more peaceful place, one daily choice at a time.
What is the hardest part about being vegan?
Honestly, the hardest part is explaining to people that I am not “silently judging” them if they’re not vegan. I don’t want people to think I “disapprove” if they eat cheese pizza. I figure they just haven’t made the connection yet, and I know I was there too—just a few short years ago. I think the vegan movement needs more compassion, less judgment.
What does natural health mean to you?
Looking to be holistically healthy, mind, body and spirit, and relying on natural (non chemical) means of healing as much as possible. For me “natural health” implies that you are seeking a balanced lifestyle, and that can mean many different things to different people!
Tell us about your blog!
I have been so lazy about my blog lately! But it includes vegan recipes, creative inspiration, personal stories about frugality, spirituality, and creativity and mental health.
What is your favorite cruelty-free product and why?
I actually make a lot of my own products using essential oils. For example, I wash my face with a mix of jojoba oil, grapeseed oil, and orange essential oil. I clean my counters with water, lemon juice, vinegar and tea tree oil. I have fun mixing up new concoctions! Although I admit to using Method Brand to clean out the toilet bowl….
Who or what inspires you?
My vegan heroes are Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, Lindsay Nixon, and Will Tuttle. I also love Angela Liddon’s blog (of course, who doesn’t??) I am also involved in a small microsanctuary, called Triangle Chance for All. (http://trianglechanceforall.org/) The founders, Justin and Rosemary Van Kleeck, along with board member Linda Nelson are amazing examples of living a cruelty free life to the fullest extent. My husband and I sponsor one of their rescued chickens. It feels good to be a small part of something I believe in!
A kitchen gadget you cannot live without?
My vitamix. I love it and it was so worth the money!
What is your favorite meal?
Tough question!!! Probably Middle Eastern food—falafel, stuffed grape leaves, hummus and veggies.
Three of your favorite cooking ingredients.
Sweet potatoes, kale, peanut butter.
Favorite resources regarding a plant-based lifestyle?
Ohsheglows.com (Angela Liddon), Happy Herbivore (Lindsay S. Nixon), Kris Carr are my favorite resources for recipes and cookbooks. Cowspiracy and Earthlings are the most inspiring documentaries. For nutrition, I recommend reading Vegan for Her: The Woman’s Guide to Being Healthy and Fit on a Plant-Based Diet by Virginia Messina. Life changing!
Any tips or words of advice to anyone considering a plant-based lifestyle?
Gradual is good! Focus on progress, not perfection.
“May our daily choices be a reflection of our deepest values, and may we use our voices to speak for those who need us most, those who have no voice, those who have no choice.” –Colleen Patrick-Goudreau
Three words to describe you.
Cheerful, Determined, Passionate.
Where can we find you via social media? IG, FB, blog address, etc.
Thank you, Anna for sharing with us! It was fun to get to know a bit more about a fellow introvert!
Thanks for stopping by!