Thanks, Timmy!

Don’t you just love it when you’re waiting for a package to arrive? You find yourself peeking into the mail box at bizarre hours, listening when you hear someone in the stairwell, thinking that perhaps it’s the letter carrier with a little something for you? Well, my super box of holiday-gift-love arrived today! Yippie!

See, Shellyfish (that would be moi) is from a very large school ‘o fish, and since there are so many of us we swap names around the holidays (or there would be entirely too much gift buying/making/wrapping/sending, etc). My little bro Timmy got my name this year, and that is always a good thing. He had my name 10 years ago and got me the coolest lava lamp EVER. Seriously. I loved it so much I lugged it back and forth across the United States three times during various moves. This year, well, we’re a little older Timmy & I, and less zany (thought I would so dig a lava lamp), so I sent him a list of books I wanted because they are a little easier to deal with when it comes to shipping.

My two gifts say so much about me: La Dolce Vegan! by Sarah Kramer and Daniels’ Running Formula by Jack Daniels, PhD. I’m jazzed about both of them, because I love running, I love vegan cookbooks, and I love books plain & simple.

I have nare had time to do much reading of either, but I did do some serious flipping through La Dolce Vegan!, the third of Kramer’s cookbooks (How it all Vegan & In the Garden of Vegan she co-authored with Tanya Barnard). I have How it all Vegan, and think it’s a great sort of primer-vegan cookbook with lots of neat advice on DIY vegany things for around the house & home, good fake-cheese ideas, and general conversions of carnivore comfort foods that we find ourselves longing for when we are looking for something that reminds us (in a good way) of our pasts. There are lots of skillfully-penned reviews of La Dolce Vegan! out there so I won’t spend too much time writing about a cookbook I haven’t kitchen-tested yet, but a cursory look has given me time to agree with much of the criticism I’ve stumbled upon- it’s filled with pictures of Kramer herself, but not of the food. Now, I’m a firm believer in free-agency: it’s her book and if she wants to cram it with pictures of herself flitting about in retro-garb and flashing her garter belt at us, well, that is her trip to take. I will say, however, that it is a little distracting, and too bad that she didn’t think of holding up the dishes featured in the book to pose with her in the shot. Once I’ve had a chance to sample a few of the recipes I’ll have more interesting things to say.

As for my Daniels’ Running Formula, well, I think that Dr. Daniels is one of the most phenomenal coaches ever. In the world. That I know of. I’m sure there are tons of amazing, cutting-edge coaches out there, but not all of them have had the platform that Dr. D (if you don’t mind, sir) has had, training world-class athletes & being oft quoted in Runner’s World magazine, and locker rooms, and running club meetings, and in net forums, and all over everywhere runners convene. I am a newbie runner. I’ll talk more about running another time, but I am just so excited about starting this book that I’m ending my post right now to go see what it’s all about!

So thanks, Timmy, for the most excellent books and holiday love. And for JFTR (just for the record) I love that they came ‘late’- stretching out the holiday goodness is always a good thing.