While Spring Break is a time when people often sprint to the beach or the mountains, I decided to do something a little different this year. I wanted to revisit the rich history of the nearby city of Birmingham, Alabama… also known as “Bombingham.”


I was about 8 years old when I first visited the Civil Rights Institute. I still remember vivid details of that memorable, eye-opening experience. I have learned so much more since then, and I believe that plays a major part in making my recent trip all the more valuable.

As planned, I drove to the Civil Rights Institute on Wednesday morning. I met my friend, who also drove to meet me there. Neither of us rode a bus. We didn’t have to walk from our homes. No one told us where we were allowed to sit. It made me think of the small things that we sometimes take for granted. I went to a college and have worked jobs where people of all backgrounds and cultures are present and celebrated. It is a blessing that we are able to work together, live together, and learn together with people of all races and walks of life.

I am so thankful for those that have gone before us, who have fought for equality and justice. I am thankful for those who risked their lives, and lost their lives, so that I would have a better future. Although there are still many areas that need reformation, I am grateful that we are not where we used to be. I am grateful that I have the freedom to use the voice I was given, and tread a way for the generation that is rising now.

“‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ There is no commandment greater than these.”

Mark 12:30-31 (NIV)






Vegan Enchilada Casserole

Show of hands if you love Mexican Food 🙂


Just me? Okay… I absolutely love Mexican food! The spices, the flavor, and all of the cheeses! When I decided to stop eating meat a year ago (I blogged about it here), I thought that meant giving up some of my favorite dishes. But… 🙂 I played around with the right ingredients and I was able to re-invent one of my signature meals with all vegan ingredients!

I will say, I was skeptical about trying the vegan cheese shreds. I’ve heard the horror stories. I’ve even tasted vegan shredded cheese myself from a different brand (It was disgusting 🙁 ). I was prepared to find something else to eat, just in case my experiment wasn’t successful. The cheese turned out delicious and I’m so glad that I tried it with this dish! I feel like it’s one of my greatest accomplishments as a vegan/vegetarian 😀


This recipe was adapted from recipegirl’s Beef and Bean Enchilada Casserole.

Here’s what I used:

  • 3/4 Bag of Gardein’s Beefless Ground
  • 1 Bag of Daiya’s Cheddar Cheese Shreds
  • Flour Tortillas
  • 1 Can of Black Beans
  • 1 Can of Pinto Beans
  • 1 Can of Mild Enchilada Sauce
  • Chili Powder
  • Garlic Powder


Here’s what I did:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350.
  2. Ground the Beefless Ground, using chili powder and garlic powder to season.
  3. Add 1/3 of the enchilada sauce to the meat, stir, and remove from heat.
  4. Add black beans and pinto beans. Mix.
  5. Layer a baking pan with tortillas.
  6. Add Beefless Ground mixture.
  7. Add 1/3 of mild enchilada sauce on top of the mixture.
  8. Add Daiya’s cheddar cheese shreds.
  9. Repeat steps 5-8, making two layers.
  10. Cover the mixture with aluminum foil.
  11. Bake for 35 minutes.


plankton vegan meme

The recipe is fairly simple and does not take long to prepare! Please note that it does not take much to season the Beefless Ground. Be careful with the amount of chili powder that you use, tasting it along the way, so that it is not too spicy.

Let me know if you try this recipe, and how it turns out! 🙂