Six Plant-Based Foods You Should Try Today


Can you believe it?  With all the information out there, STILL!, more than 90 percent of adults and children do not eat the amount of fruits and veggies recommended by the latest Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

So in order to tempt you into expanding your  food horizons, we’ve decided to share an article written by Certified Holistic Health Practitioner and Lifestyle Coach Vanessa Chamberlain, who offers some tasty and easy to find items that can potentially become your new “staples”.

Six Plant-Based Foods You Should Try Today

The glorious thing about plant-based eating is that your grocery store or farmer’s market is full of an incredible array of foods, flavors, and textures that are just waiting to be discovered. Even a typical grocery store has a produce section that carries seasonal and ethnic foods that often get passed-over, but are convenient, inexpensive, and yummy.

If you’re stuck in a rut of getting the same lettuce-tomato-onion-type foods that you always get, take a walk! Look at some of the other plant-based foods and see how you can work them into your diet.

Not sure where to start? In the spirit of a number that signifies longevity, here are six plant-based foods I totally love that are healthy and tasty, but not part of the average diet. What are some delicious food discoveries you’ve made and put on your grocery list each week?


Jicama, also known as a Mexican potato, is a big, heavy, brown fruit that really does look like a weird potato. The excellent thing about jicama is that it is very crisp and crunchy, but has a mild flavor like a cucumber. Jicama can be sliced and used with dips as an alternative to chips, eaten in sticks like any other crunchy veggie, or added to salads for a snappy texture without confusing the flavor profile. It’s a great summer side dish served with a spritz of lime juice and a dusting of chili powder if you’d like a little kick!

 Bok Choy
Bok Choy

In Asian cuisine, bok choy is a staple! For most of us, though, we’d never think to work bok choy into a dish, which is unfortunate because of how versatile and healthy this veggie is. Bok choy can be added to a salad, but it can also be eaten like you’d eat celery with a little hummus or nut butter. It can also be added to soups or stir-frys, or braised or grilled on its own, and given a little seasoning to become a brilliant side dish.


Pluots are an incredible, juicy little snack that comes from mixing a plum with an apricot. They’re so good! Plums aren’t terribly uncommon, but not a lot of people are familiar with pluots. It’s a shame because they’re easy to carry in a lunch for you or for your children, they’re a little sweet with the benefits of both plums and apricots, and they’re another inexpensive fruit. They might be seasonal depending on where you live, but look for a fruit that’s a little smaller than a plum, and more yellow, in the plum area of your grocery store.


Rutabaga is popular in some countries around the world, but it frequently gets forgotten in the US. With a little bit of a punch like a radish, rutabaga is an awesome root vegetable. If you like the spicy snap of it, it’s great to be eaten as a raw veggie. Others would enjoy rutabagas along with things like potatoes, parsnips, and squash in a cold-weather harvest stew!

Nopal Cactus
Nopal Cactus

A lot of people feel strange about eating cactus, but prickly pear cactus (also known as nopal) tastes great and is SO good for you! It can have positive effects on blood sugar and managing diabetes, and it can help lower cholesterol. I suggest buying it cleaned already because the spines can be difficult to deal with if you’re new to the food, but many average grocery stores (and I imagine every Mexican or Hispanic market) carry cleaned nopal ready to cook. Similar in texture to something like a green pepper, nopal is great in dishes like scrambled tofu, or really anything sautéed. It tastes like other green veggies (think green peppers or green beans) with just a little lemony tartness. It goes really well with spicy dishes.

Dandelion Greens
Dandelion Greens

The wonderful world of leafy greens leaves us with plenty of options at pretty much every grocery store, but dandelion greens aren’t something most people eat every day. The green leaves are great in salads and slaws, but they can also be boiled like spinach or sautéed and seasoned. They’re just a little bitter, but fun to try, and you can even forage for them if you’re really up for an adventure!

When people tell me that they don’t do plant-based eating because they don’t want to limit themselves, I have to laugh. People limit themselves all the time! Even with great options and an endless menu of flavors and colors, most people fall into a routine of eating the same things all the time. This is your wake-up call to use plant-based eating as a way to EXPAND your diet, and bring in fantastic fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and beans that you otherwise never would have enjoyed.

For more information, please visit: and connect with her on Twitter: @vkchamberlin

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Mirror Mirror the Musical

by Tracey Paleo, Gia On The Movemirror mirror the musical

mirror mirror on the wall… 

It wasn’t particularly plausible even for a fairy tale, that is, if you are dealing with fairy tales in their most traditional sense – with reality.  Its foremost feature being a young girl who supposedly, living in the modern age, never sees herself in any sort of reflection ever. Is that even possible?  Mandi Gottadolla has the perfect life. The adopted daughter of millionaire moguls, Mandi’s been sheltered from the world’s harsh realities, and has never seen pain, suffering, poverty — or even her own face! 

As a satire the writing wasn’t astonishingly new – the moments, interest points, stage directions and choreography down to the last exit, tread dangerously close to formulaic. 

Ultimately, there are no real highs or lows, no grandiose arc. In fact, the experience with this show is heavily reminiscent of clean, tween tv/chick flick melodrama – captivating, enchanting, appropriately bold in all the right places, yet skirting tenderly around the important issues, not digging too deep, so as not to offend.

“Once upon a time, in a faraway land called Manhattan, there lived a socialite named Mandi. Blonde, beautiful, and unbelievably rich, this paparazzi princess led a fairytale life. But alas! Unbeknownst to Mandi, she had been living under the spell of a terrible White lie. And her world was about to come tumbling down…”

With all that could be pointed to as “not quite”, there is something to be said for trying to create an off-handed parody that talks about identity, identity crisis and racism, jostling around inside the comic nuances of friendship, loyalty, love and self-love

Growing up (actually as well as metaphorically) is so confusing all the time.  In this tale everyone is in angst about the truth.  All for good reason.  It’s hard to know how to think, feel, act, even when you’re pretty sure about what’s right or wrong.  And when faced with the choice of accepting who you are or living in the fantasy of what others tell you, inside the realm of this coming-of-age story, Mirror Mirror the Musical does have a very real question to posit, a genuinely important idea to ruminate upon and a response that is positively essential to act out.  It just needs, however a tiny bit more work. 

Rather than pull together in a completely cohesive line, Mirror Mirror tends to float around a multitude of couched ideas and bits, all at once, so that it is sometimes hard to know exactly what is trying to be said. 

In an earlier, shorter version produced at this year’s 2015 Hollywood Fringe, it is easy to imagine this show, being a stunning hit. Lot’s of quipy lines, fewer pauses, a stunning array of costume and a happy ending for Mirror Mirror’s leading lady.  There is zero pique in this delightfully silly story which, frankly has one of the most “kick ass” original musical scores heard in recent days sung mostly by powerhouse talent Ashley Lynette Brown who quite radiantly plays Amanda Gottadolla.

It’s been a long journey for writer/producer November Christine, in her quest to mount her first fully formed theatrical production and it has not been without success.  But what’s a little longer for the sake of (needed) tweaking this entirely appealing gem, tightening up the running time and giving it another “once over” for impact, is all I say.

This show is now closed.
Mirror, Mirror recently premiered at L.A.’s Chromolume Theatre at The Attic.

Burbank Beer Festival Premieres October 17th!

Get thirsty!

The inaugural Burbank Beer Festival will be taking over the streets of Downtown Burbank for one day, on Saturday, October 17, 2015.

Burbank Beer Festival


A first of its kind, the Burbank Beer Festival will celebrate the arrival of the autumn season, and will feature a monumental fall street fair as well as tastings of over 85 craft beers on tap from scores of different breweries including Absolution Brewing Co.,Angel City Brewery, Figueroa Mountain Brewing, Saint Archer Brewery, Portland Cider Company, Eagle Rock Brewery, Karl Strauss Brewing Company, MacLeod Ale Brewing Co., Island Brewing Company, The Bloody Cure, Ballast Point, Stone Brewing Co. and Firestone Walker Brewing Co..

Burbank Beer Festival will feature two sessions of craft beer sampling: 12:00 – 3:00 pm or 4:00 – 7:00 pm.

The street fair portion of the Burbank Beer Festival will take over several blocks of Downtown Burbank, transforming San Fernando Boulevard into a colorful outdoor street fair.

Entry to the Fall Street Fair is free and open to the public. Tickets to the beer tasting areas can be purchased for $40 online or at the door while supplies last. Tickets include a tasting glass and 3-ounce samples of over 85 craft beers. Individuals must be 21 years of age or older with a valid ID to enter the festival’s sampling blocks and to consume alcohol.

Burbank Beer Festival


For more information visit

Entertainment will include live musical performances on the main stage throughout the day. Confirmed bands include SayReal, an exciting combination of meaningful lyrics and a vibration of reggae and rock, and The Bomb, a Santa Barbara based band with R&B beginnings that now features a variety of musical talents to get the audience dancing and moving.

And as with any good street fair, there will be food!

More than 100 restaurants in Downtown Burbank, will be participating plus there will be plenty of snacks to fast casual and fine dining to choose from. Also making a presence will be dozens of local merchants, displaying and offering artisanal craft goods such as handmade jewelry, accessories and clothing, supplementing the many existing retailers on San Fernando Boulevard. For more information on Downtown Burbank and to make restaurant reservations, please visit

Burbank Beer Festival has also partnered with 7 local hotels to offer special packages for the weekend. So if you have friends coming inot town there’s space. Best Part:  All packages include a pair of tickets to the Burbank Beer Festival on Saturday, October 17. In addition, there will be a shuttle service connecting the event site with the hotels during the festival.

Hotel partners include Safari Inn, Coast Anabelle Hotel, Holiday Inn Burbank Media Center,Los Angeles Marriott Burbank Airport, Courtyard by Marriott Los Angeles/Burbank Airport, Hotel Amarano and SpringHill Suites Los Angeles Burbank/Downtown.

Burbank Beer Festival

Cake Batter’s 2nd Annual Funny Women Festival Returns to Hollywood

I.O. West, Cake Batter, Women in comedy

The all-­female comedy festival will once again be held at iO West in Hollywood, Wednesday, December 2 through Saturday, December 5, 2015.

Attendees will be treated to celebrity panel discussions, Q&A’s from the industry’s leading female professionals, and of course, comedy shows in all forms.

The renowned iO West theater will host the festival on all 3 stages during the 4­day run. The festival will include approximately 120 shows, showcase more than 300 performers from around the country, and offerworkshops, panels, and special events led by industry professionals.

Follow I.O. West on Twitter:  @iOWest

#FWFLA  #iOWest 

Created by sketch comedy group, Cake Batter, comprised of Lauren Frost, Angela Rysk, and Erin Miller Williams, Funny Women Festival, or FWF, was created to celebrate women in comedy and to promote community and opportunity for females in the industry.  FWF was also supported by some of comedy’s biggest names including WifeyTV, Funny or Die, and Buzzfeed.

“Our goal is to provide a setting for women in comedy to not only perform, but to get to know each other and inspire each other through their work.” says co­-producer Lauren Frost.

“Yea, it’s pretty simple.” continues Erin Miller Williams “There’s a lot of talented women in this city and we want to throw a big old party to celebrate them.”

James Grace, general manager at iO West adds, “We are proud to support the surge of women in comedy and provide the stage to showcase women that will frame the new face of this art form.”

A portion of all proceeds will be donated to Funny Women Festival’s beneficiary, the Downtown Women’s Center located in Los Angeles.

For more information and to apply, visit­women­festival/

Applications will be accepted through October 9th.

cake batter funny women festival, IO West, comedy


ABOUT CAKE BATTER Cake Batter is Lauren Frost, Angela Rysk, and Erin Miller Williams; three women hailing from three different parts of the country who found each other in Los Angeles and liked each other so much they formed a sketch group. Creators of Funny Women Festival and graduates of Second City Hollywood and Upright Citizens Brigade, the girls are figuring out adulthood through comedy. While their peers are getting married and having babies, they’re performing shows at the Comedy Central Stage, iO West and UCB… because who needs a mortgage when you have an award winning sketch show? Cake Batter was featured at the Chicago Sketch Festival (2015 & 2014), finalists in the LA Scripted Comedy Festival (2014), named Best Scripted Show at the Del Close Awards (2013), and Sketch Cage Match Champions at the LA Improv Festival (2013). ABOUT IO WEST IO (formerly Improv Olympic) is a world famous long­form Improv­comedy theater with branches in both Los Angeles and Chicago. Celebrities such as Tina Fey, Chris Farley, Eric Stonestreet, and Amy Poehler have studied and performed here. The iO West Theater has been, and continues to be, the home for some of the most popular comedic shows in Los Angeles for over almost two decades and offers a full training center for improv and writing classes. iO West features a full bar, nightly shows and year round classes.

Judith Hill Is “Back in Time” on October 23rd

Judith Hill, funky, music

Back In Time, the debut album from acclaimed singer/songwriter Judith Hill, will be released through NPG Records on October 23. The wide release follows the album’s unprecedented introduction in March 2015, when Live Nation made it available to newsletter subscribers for free for a brief 48 hours.

Hill co-produced the soulful Back In Time with multi-platinum icon Prince. Their creative partnership began after Judith named the legendary artist as her dream collaborator in an interview. Prince called her shortly thereafter and invited her to Paisley Park Studios. The playful behind-the-scenes video, which premiered today, captures the jam-like vibe of the subsequent recording sessions…You can watch it HERE.

The scintillating, horn-fueled “Cry, Cry, Cry,” one of eleven tracks penned by Hill for Back In Time, is streaming now on TIDAL and Spotify (see below for the album’s full track listing).Rolling Stone has praised Hill’s “seasoned, soulful sound” and The Wall Street Journal noted, “[She] has pipes, experience, style.” The Huffington Post hailed her as “a standout talent” and Idolator observed, “Her pitch, range and style are absolutely outstanding.”Hill, who opened for Prince on his spring 2015 tour, duets with him on “Million $ Show,” the lead-off track on his new album, HITNRUN Phase One, which was released this month.

She won a GRAMMY® earlier this year when the Morgan Neville-directed documentary 20 Feet From Stardom was honored as Best Music Film. The film, which also won an Oscar, shines the spotlight on the untold true story of singers like Hill and co-stars Darlene Love, Merry Clayton and Lisa Fischer, who have backed some of the greatest musical legends of the 21st century.

Judith has supported such artists as the late Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder,Elton John, John Legend and Josh Groban.Hill, who wrote her first song when she was only four years old, comes from a musical family. Her mother, a classical pianist from Japan, and her father, a funk bass player, both played with Sly Stone, Chaka Khan, Rufus and many other artists.



It Came to a Complete Stop…

Hovercraft Doggy has fascinated us for years with some of the most mind-blowing Art, Architecture, Design, Photography on the web.  No less today, we culled their pages for inspiration.  This one called “Complete Stop” definitely had its effect.

art, photography

Messages from the Street

graffiti, street art, feminism graffiti, street art, climate change graffiti, street art, love graffiti, street art, flowers graffiti, street art, love graffiti, street art, climate change