10 Things I Learned In 2013 So That You Don’t Have To

Cherry Pie Quinoa Breakfast Casserole (9)

Overflowing pie, super slimy smoothie, the ugliest loaf of grain-free bread you’ve ever seen…

Some may call them “failures”, I like to think of them as lessons.

And today? I’m counting down the top 10 lessons I’ve learned this year, with a couple of life lessons sprinkled in.

Would love to hear from you in the comments today – what major lessons did you learn this year?

Cherry Pie Quinoa Breakfast Casserole (53)

1. Hemp milk doesn’t make a good base for Quinoa Breakfast Casseroles.

In fact, baking with any Homemade Hemp Milk just isn’t a good idea. I tried it in multiple recipes and the tiny fibers from the milk separated from the baked dish. The separation created a really off consistency. Not pleasant.


2. Using 100% coconut butter as frosting between cookies makes them next to impossible to eat.

Coconut butter as a base for a frosting is a great idea. But as the only ingredient? Not so good. In this recipe, I tried to sandwich coconut butter between two Carob Crunch Cookies. It was all fine and dandy until the coconut butter hardened. I had to practically chisel my way through that cookie.


3. Cooking and blending lentils is not the way to make lentil crackers.

These crackers were so gross. I’ve never experienced anything like it before. Instead of cooking the lentils, it’s best to make a flour out of the dry lentils and make crackers from that.


4. Fermented tapioca does not equal Vegan Cottage Cheese.

It equals really gross tasting tapioca pudding. Lesson learned. Anyone have some ideas on how to make a good vegan cottage cheese recipe? I’m all ears!


5. Mashed cauliflower and beans with loads of barbecue-like spices will not result in Vegan Ground “Beef”.

I will never use cauliflower in this way, ever again. It’s best for Vegan Cream of Mushroom Soup and Vegan Lemon Pudding.

6. The perception that you apply to your world is your choice.

Kevin and I went through some major emotional, spiritual and financial challenges in 2013. When the stuff got rough, we made a commitment to one another to stay positive. Positivity and happiness is a choice. You just have to surrender to it.

Read more: Closing a Chapter Gracefully (Even After a Rough Ride)


7. Las Vegas has one heck of a health scene.

Whether you’re vegan, gluten-free, paleo or somewhere in between, Vegas has you covered. I was SO blown away with the options.

Read more: What a Nutrition Educator Eats (Vegas Edition)

India_Feb29 (112)

8. A soul-filled goal will empower you, connect you to your truth, spark your soul fire, and transform your life.

What I want to feel creates what I want to achieve.

Read more: Creating Goals with Soul

9. Every person in our lives, no matter how brief their role, are seeds of opportunity bursting with limitless potential.

Seeing the good in others is a seed that can transform your perception from fear to love.

Read more: Limitless Potential Everywhere


10. Fully healing from an eating disorder is a long, long journey (but so totally worth it!)

This year, I made a promise to myself to go that last little step toward healing forever.

Read more: The Last Chapter


I would love to hear from you – what lessons have you learned in 2013?

Please, share in the comments below! You never know how your story will transform those around you.

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  1. Thanks for sharing the things you learned in 2013 do we don’t have to- very funny! I appreciate the recipe disasters because I have had that experience as well. You think something is going to come out great and then it is a flop. Good to know I’m not the only one!

    • Gosh, I know what you mean, Amy. You just gotta laugh!

  2. Ha! This is amazing! Thanks so much for sharing your fails, I love it. I have some good ones of my own, I wish I had them recorded now! Love your work Leanne x

  3. Great blog and Happy New Year! (found you through a link from The Taste Space). Glad you found out how wonderful our vegan food scene here is in Las Vegas. There have been new additions since you were here. Rather than list everything, I would encourage you to check out the Eating Vegan in Vegas blog. Many restaurants added vegan options to there menus or are very willing to adapt their foods to be vegan.

  4. Not so much a lesson i learned but more an insight. i have to (want to) be gentle with me myself and i ! for example; after reading a guest post on your blog i finally bought myself a juicer and having so much fun experimenting. I signed up for your latest juice challenge but was ok with myself that it didnt always work. so no sweat. No hysterical regime and expectations anymore. any juice is one more then ever before.
    thanks so much for this inspirational year and all those sweet and super personals posts you did wow.
    have a good one in 2014

  5. This list is hilarious, Leanne. Loved it. Even better that you photographed your flops, too. I oftentimes take pictures before eating it, too, so I don’t know I am photographing a non-bloggable recipe. ;)

    • That’s what I do… sometimes. Other times? I know it’s just awful and I try to take pictures of the end results as I’m holding back the giggles. The worst is when you think it’s going to be AWESOME, you take pictures of it, try really hard to make them perfect… then take the first bite and spit it right out. Nooooo!!! lol all fun, though!

  6. I did get a chuckle out of #5 .. I can’t imagine that cauliflower/beans would make a ‘good’ meat sub, but at least you tried ;-)


    • Right? When I say it out loud, it sounds ridiculous. But who knew cauliflower would make a good cream sub for pudding? And it was amazing! So, you just never know!