Quaint French Bakery in South Florida

L’artisane Creative Bakery

7423 Collins Av. Miami Beach. Fl. 33144

When you’ve been vegan for 6 years and you’ve been fortunate enough to eat at some of the best vegan spots in the country, you start to find it more difficult to find a new place that really WOWs you.

That was not the case when I had the L’Artisane Creative Bakery experience this past week. I say experience because it truly was more than just stopping by a bakery and picking up a croissant.

This charming little bakery just opened up this month in North Miami Beach. I’ve been seeing it all over Instagram and knew that I absolutely HAD to go. I had my mind set on it for weeks, so my husband and I made the hour trip and there were no regrets.

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Natural Deodorants

Let’s talk natural deodorants. By now, we’ve heard how harmful unnatural deodorants (or really any unnatural cosmetics) are for your body and the environment. There’s some negativity surrounding going natural. Why? Because most of us have probably had a bad experience trying them out (or we could smell that someone else was). I’ve been there. In fact, I’ve been experimenting with many different brands over the past six years.

I first started questioning the types of deodorants I was using when I was still in high school. I couldn’t bring myself to commit to a natural brand just yet. It wasn’t until the summer I graduated that I decided to finally switch things up.

I didn’t exactly choose the right path for myself. I went almost full-on hippie from one day to the next and began making my own deodorant. I bought a spray bottle and filled it with water, coconut oil, sea salt, and lavender. This is a great option for a lot of people, but it just did not work for me at that time.

I wasn’t fully vegan at that point. What you eat has a big effect on how you smell and how much you sweat… you get the idea. I also went from using big brand names like Secret to my own little concoction. It was a lot of change all at once. I stuck with this method for a few months but it was not a good experience. I was always embarrassed, too paranoid to lift up my arms, and often felt like giving up on the natural path. I know that this is a common experience at first but I am here to encourage you not to give up!

Like many things, there’s a natural deodorant out there for everyone. You just have to stay committed to trying out different ones to find the right one for you. Trust in your body; it WILL adapt and the effort is completely worth it!

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Vegan Eats in Fresno, CA

Oh, Fresno. “The Best Little City in California.” I never really understood that during my 21 years of living there. Now that I’ve been away from home for going on 3 years, my appreciation for this city has grown immensely.  It’s not very often that I get to visit Fresno at this point in my life. When I do, I always get the opportunity to discover new reasons to love it.

Of course, I have plenty of reasons to love it already. It’s where I was born and raised. It’s nearly impossible to be driving down the streets without being reminded of cherished memories. There are so many great things I can say about my hometown, and every time I go back this “little” city’s consciousness is clearly greater.

Fresno, California is where I resided when I first started my vegan journey. Back then, I only knew of one vegan restaurant in town.  Aside from Chipotle and veggie Sushi, I totally relied on cooking at home. Last month when I visited, my vegan heart was SO happy to see the growth of the movement in the valley. I was able to try out new places nearly every day!

Usually, when I make my way home for a visit, I always make it a priority to go to LA so I can enjoy some of the best vegan food that California has to offer. My friend Jessa and I had a day trip planned to head down there. The morning of, I called her with a different idea. I felt so strongly about staying in the Valley and enjoying what my hometown had to offer. Jessa was all for it and we ended up trying out a few places together that day. It was wonderful!

While I still have a couple more places on my “want to go” list, I wanted to give some quick and honest reviews on my vegan experiences in the area. Whether you live in Fresno or are just driving through, check it out and let me know if you’ve found any other valley vegan gems!

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Chickpea Spread

Hello, hello! Manuel has been away from home the past couple of weeks. This has resulted in me holding off on completely restocking the fridge. An account I follow recently posted a photo of them eating a chickpea “mock tuna sandwich.” This inspired me to use whatever I happened to already have at home to take a crack at my own version of it. & Let me tell you, I was SOOOO impressed with the results that I’ve already eaten it three times this week.

This is super simple, affordable, & there’s even a good chance you already have most of the ingredients on deck! So, try it out & let me know how ya like it!

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Menstrual Cup: The Conscious Collection Method

What is a menstrual cup? By now, many of you may have caught on as they’ve become more popular over the past few years. If you haven’t, no need to worry! I was there at one point, too. A menstrual cup is a reusable silicone cup (make sure it’s medical-grade silicone) that is better for your health, the environment, and your wallet. The cup is to be inserted into the vagina to collect blood, (rather than absorbing it) during menstruation. Once full, it is to be emptied out into the toilet or drain. Rinse. Repeat.

If you’re already feeling skeptical, you’re going through the same steps that most of us do. Just keep reading! *ATTENTION MEN!!!! Don’t feel that this post isn’t for you. This is good information to have for any woman in your life that you care about. I may not have started using one as early as I did without the thoughtfulness of my husband. You keep reading, too!

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Why I Chose to Live Consciously

Hello, all! Welcome to my very first blog post as sentientjewel. This is very exciting for me since I’ve been wanting to start this up for a long time now. I’ve been asking myself what I wanted to discuss in my first post. I’ve even written down a list of possible topics in my journal, but the one that keeps coming to the front of my mind is why I’m vegan in the first place.

I think this is an important story to share, not just because it’s the start of it all, but because it seems to be the first thing that my peers ask me once they find out that I live a plant-based life. So here it is!

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