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105degrees, Level II: graduation

December 28, 2010

Hi all! I hope everyone had a merry X-mas (I did!), and I’m sure you can understand my blogging infrequency since leaving 105degrees. I’m here to give you the details on graduation day, then most likely take another few days off. I apologize too that I’ve been unable to comment on all your blogs…I’ve got a LOT of work to do here at home to get my life reorganized. I’ll be back in the New Year with a vengeance, though. Bring on 2011!

For breakfast on graduation morning, I had a mini strawberry cupcake for breakfast before going to the gym. Hey, it’s got apple, beet, strawberry, and coconutβ€”sounds like a perfect pre-workout snack to me; am I right?

In the afternoon, I headed up to 105degrees early to work on polishing my cookbook proposal while sipping on a Blueberry Bee smoothie. With blueberries, honey, white chocolate, and bee pollen, it’s my favorite smoothie at 105.

I’d prepared a big batch of flax crackers to serve with my hummus buffet.

Here’s a peek at our class’s collection of final meals.

Cristina had donated some bread sticks to complete my hummus trays.

I presented my cookbook proposal to the class and all our guests…

…and then received my Level II diploma from Haylee.

Leaving 105degrees was bittersweet for me. Saying goodbye to Russell, Haylee, my classmates, the Academy, and all the friendships I made there was tough. I know I’ll be back to visit, though, and in the meantime, I know I have a lot of work to do to get my career underway. As much as I loved sharing my time at 105 with all of you, I think I’ll enjoy sharing the coming journey even more. So now, it’s ready…set…GO!

50 Comments leave one →
  1. December 28, 2010 6:55 pm

    Congratulations again on graduating! How exciting!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:08 pm

      Thanks Aimee! πŸ™‚

  2. December 28, 2010 7:01 pm

    You know kid…i want to buy a ticket on that train you are going to be on.You are on your way to the ride of your life in the vegan/vegetarian/rawfood culinary world!!!I wish you much success in all that you do!!For the New Year i wish you hope,joy and health to both you and Matt!

    • December 28, 2010 7:03 pm

      Whats up with the TCU HORN FROG bag??…btw my hometown,born and raised…YEE HA!

      • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
        December 28, 2010 7:04 pm

        Haha, that’s actually a Jayhawk, mascot of MY alma mater – KU! πŸ™‚

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:09 pm

      Hehe, thank you so much Dee…happy belated New Year to you and yours, too! Matt and I had a great one. Hope to talk to you soon about the possibility of coming to Dallas to teach a class at Bliss!

  3. December 28, 2010 7:02 pm

    Very exciting! Congrats on such an amazing achievement, I look forward to what’s in store for next year!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:10 pm

      Thanks, Alayna! I’m excited for the future, too πŸ˜€

  4. December 28, 2010 7:09 pm

    CONGRATS! What’s next for you?

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:10 pm

      Thanks Summer – my next step is, hopefully, my cookbook! Eee!

  5. Shameaka permalink
    December 28, 2010 7:29 pm

    Congratulations! I too am looking forward to your next endeavors, especially your cookbook.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:11 pm

      Thank you Shameaka! I’m so happy to hear you’re anticipating my cookbook! πŸ˜€

  6. December 28, 2010 8:35 pm

    So proud of you, and can’t wait to follow you on the next step of your journey to absolute stardom. After all, part of your 2011 business plan is working out a way to air-freight your raw goodies to me in Australia, right? πŸ˜‰

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:26 pm

      Um, YEAH! Or at least the tools, ingredients, and kn0w-how you’ll need to make them yourself πŸ˜€

  7. gidgetnfroggi permalink
    December 28, 2010 9:11 pm

    Go KU!!!! Congrats and can’t wait to read more about your journey

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:42 pm

      Rock Chalk Jayhawk πŸ™‚ Thank you, m’dear!

  8. December 28, 2010 9:16 pm

    Man, I’ve been really wanting to get my hands on some bee pollen, and that smoothie sounds awesome!

    Good luck on your forthcoming adventure.

    Oh, and DevilDriver rocks my face off (assuming that’s what your hoodie says, lol). πŸ™‚

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:45 pm

      When I first got myself some bee pollen, I could only eat a little, or else I found the flavor overwhelming. Over time, though, I’ve been able to increase my tolerance for it considerably, and now I can even say I ENJOY the flavor! is a good, (relatively) inexpensive source for it.

      F’kyeah that’s DevilDriver! I’ve met them twice; their signatures used to be on the back of that hoodie but have largely faded. You are completely awesome for knowing who they are. πŸ™‚

  9. December 28, 2010 9:46 pm

    I am VERY sure you are sad! Congrats though!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:53 pm

      I am, but in a good way πŸ™‚ Thanks!

  10. December 29, 2010 4:43 am

    Yay congrats again!! How exciting for you, what’s next?!!!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:53 pm

      Thanks Kate! Next up is, hopefully, my cookbook!

  11. December 29, 2010 12:03 pm

    Congrats on your graduation! Your hummus tray looks so yummy! =)

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:53 pm

      Why thank you! πŸ˜€

  12. December 29, 2010 12:51 pm

    Oh Congratulations!! You have so much amazing energy and events coming up- and the new year marks just the beginning! Congrats on the massive achievement and all that you learned! I can’t wait to come to one of your restaurants to feast on HUMMUS! πŸ˜‰

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:54 pm

      Lori, I always love your enthusiasm! Thanks so much for your ever-present support and kindness. πŸ™‚

  13. December 29, 2010 2:39 pm

    Congrats sweetie! Very proud of you!!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:54 pm

      Thanks Nico!

  14. December 29, 2010 5:26 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS LOVE!!!!!!! the photos are so exciting! you’re LEGIT now!! ❀ and yay for those adorably cute mini cupcakes!! ❀

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:54 pm

      Thank you Kelsey! Legit indeed – eee!
      Glad you like the cupcakes, too! πŸ™‚

  15. December 30, 2010 12:33 am

    Congrats again for your amazing accomplishment. The hummus looks amazing. I’m looking forward to your future creations! What a gift to the raw community you are!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:55 pm

      Thanks so much for all the support and encouragement you’ve offered me throughout, bitt πŸ™‚ I feel lucky to count you among my bloggie friends!

  16. Spumoni permalink
    December 30, 2010 3:03 am

    Ah, bittersweet indeed. Even for us to witness the separation is bittersweet. Yet, we all know there is still excitement ahead, and we’re with you all the way.

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:58 pm

      I’m focusing on the SWEET part of “bittersweet” πŸ™‚ Thank you so much, Simone, for all your encouragement!

  17. December 31, 2010 11:28 am

    Congratulations! I am so excited for you and your future. I am sooo looking foward to seeing where you go from here. Happy New Years!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:59 pm

      Thank you Michelle! I’m excited to see what the future brings, too πŸ˜€

  18. January 1, 2011 6:33 pm

    Happy new year to you and all best wishes for picking up your mojo and running with it to make something special! I’m looking forward to see what you come up with too.


    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 6:59 pm

      Happy belated new year to you and Phil as well, my dear! My fingers (and toes) are crossed for the future πŸ™‚

  19. January 2, 2011 4:12 pm

    Congrats! I’m very excited for you—and I may have to live vicariously on this one too. I’ve wanted to go to 105Degrees for a very long time, but the logistics just never seem to work out.

    I just started to read your blog, but I’m going to go back and read through to see more about your experience.

    The mini strawberry cupcake looks fab!

    Happy New Year!


    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 7:01 pm

      Hi Lisa! Thanks so much for reading. I didn’t think I’d ever make it to 105, but the cards finally fell in all the right places…keep up hope! You may just make it there someday πŸ™‚ I hope you do!

  20. January 4, 2011 2:43 pm



    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 7:03 pm

      Thanks Whitney!

  21. January 5, 2011 1:42 pm

    This might make me sound kind of like a dork but… I found your blog last night and I read through all of your posts from when you were at 105 degrees… It sounds like such an interesting place, and all of your dishes looked amazing!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 7:06 pm

      Hey Liz! It’s not dorky at all that you found my blog and read all the way through all my 105 posts. I’ve done that more than a few times myself with other blogs! I’m thrilled you enjoyed them all so much – thanks for reading!

  22. January 5, 2011 4:48 pm

    Congratulations! What an amazing experience! I’m excited to see what you do next, I like living vicariously through your determination and badassness! πŸ™‚

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 7:06 pm

      Haha, thank you so very much, River! πŸ˜›

  23. January 5, 2011 7:03 pm

    Wow, congrats again!

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 9, 2011 7:06 pm

      Thank you!

  24. January 10, 2011 8:31 pm

    That strawberry cupcake looks so delicious. Congrats on the graduation! So happy for you! And a selection of hummus?! YUM! I’ve got some sort of addiction to hummus, I’m pretty sure. πŸ˜‰

    • Amber Shea @Almost Vegan permalink
      January 11, 2011 9:54 am

      Thanks Rach! I can completely relate to your hummus addiction, needless to say πŸ˜›

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