Hello! I’m Mandy, wife, stay-at-home mama, homeschooler, and LOVER of tahini, dark chocolate, nut butters, and healthy living. I was born and raised in Illinois, lived four years in Southern California, and found my true home in Bend, OR with my husband (Josh) and daughter (Willow). We love to hike anywhere the adventure takes us, camp along the Oregon Coast, play board games, and hoard books (all three of us are massive bookworms).
I received my BA in Psychology in 2002, but after working for a few years in the field, I realized my true passion and peace of mind lies in cooking, writing, reading and exploring the great outdoors with my family. I was taking too much of my work home with me and carrying the struggles of others deeply. I have learned that better health starts from within, consciously wanting to make a change inside and out.
When I was 13, I made the decision to become a vegetarian after seeing a news segment on slaughterhouses. The cruelty horrified me and forever changed the way I looked at animals. For the next 16 years, I continued to consume dairy and eggs because I thought that since they’re not killing the chickens or the dairy cows, that it was OK. My health and well-being slowly declined over the years and the number of health issues increased. I battled chronic migraines, acne, depression, chronic fatigue, anxiety, digestive issues and was taking a few prescription medications. I was miserable and realized that something needed to change, that life could be better. Through my own research and with the help of a holistic practitioner, I was able to link all of my issues to food. By eliminating all animal products, gluten and soy, I was able to heal my body and stop all medications. My initial reason for going vegan was for health reasons, but I learned soon after about the cruelty within the dairy and egg industries. Fourteen years later, I could never go back.
Recently, in 2020, I
was given took the opportunity to rewrite my story and heal for good. Rather than writing and repeating myself here, I am going to link an updated post: An Apology and Message to Myself… And You
Be Sol-Ful was born eight years ago when I realized that my story might be able to help someone else. On my blog, you will find my personal journey of trial & error, what I’ve learned, how I’ve grown, cruelty-free products I love, along with plant-based recipes. I believe in being kind and rather than being forceful with information, I have found that taking the gentle approach to sharing about plant-based living is better received. I also believe in being transparent – to be open with both struggles and successes – to show that I am just as human as the next person.
Thanks for stopping by!
If you have any questions, please contact me via email: firstname.lastname@example.org