Thursday, July 31, 2014

21 Day Fix Day 5: Mad body, happy mind

When we started this program, my husband made me agree to get up with him first thing in the morning (6:15am) to eat breakfast together. Before this, I would wake briefly to give him a hug and kiss, then snuggle back into bed and sleep for about 1.5 more hours. I told him it shouldn't be a problem as long as we made it to bed at a decent time.

Well, we've been trying to go to bed earlier, but it's been a little rough since we are used to me getting caught up in a book while he gets distracted by either a video game or logic puzzles. I'd say we've been averaging about 11pm. And then with all the water we've been drinking... let's just say that last night I got up to visit the bathroom SIX times! That means a lot of lost sleep due to the interruptions. I've also been feeling more wired when I go to bed - can't decide if it's because of my body changing how I react to my evening medicine (it's a nerve medicine that my father also takes, and he says it makes him wired even though previously it's made me sleepy, hence why I take it at bedtime) or if it's the afternoon workouts, or something else altogether.

Anyway, this morning Chris got a little frustrated with me when I could barely drag myself out of bed - and then refused to eat and stated as soon as I made his breakfast I was going back to bed. I think we guessed that I have been averaging 6-7 hours of sleep per night, instead of the 8-9 that I am used to - and I believe it is throwing my body out of whack!! When you add that in to the "detoxing" of my body (trust me, I am craving sugar and carbs like there is no tomorrow right now), I think my body might be a tiny bit mad at me. The extra sleep helped a little, but we might have to figure out a way for me to get more sleep.

But one thing that has helped me is to focus on the positives. It's something I learned in my Train Your Brain class at Square One, and has truly helped me to find ways to view being healthy in a more positive way. True, my initial motivation was negative (let's face it, I was feeling fat and hated my body, and really hated that I was moving up in clothing sizes rather than down AGAIN), but yesterday night I found myself celebrating something so off-the-wall from my usual self that I realized there are things I'm actually ENJOYING about all of this!

Here's my brag (and I realize that my trainer Kim is reading my blogs so I know I'm gonna get "punished" for this by moving to a harder difficulty next training lol): One thing Kim has me do as a warm-up and cardio component, to help me reach a goal of better endurance (going on Familiarization trips as a travel agent involves a lot of stamina, so one of my goals is to be able to keep up without feeling so breathless), is to get on the treadmill and do a pyramid: I start at a 0 incline, and every minute (or 2 on some of the more intense days) I go up 2 inclines, until I reach 10, then I go back down. Kind of like climbing a perfect hill! When I first started out, I was at 3mph and could barely make it to an incline of 4 before I was having difficultly breathing and my talking was more like grunts and gasps when she would ask me questions. Yesterday, I did one minute intervals at 3.4mph - and we talked the ENTIRE time with me using actual words and phrases! That's a BIG accomplishment for me, and I found myself almost giddy about it - I even came home and had to brag to my husband (who was probably not very impressed but at least he pretended to be lol)!

I've noticed that even though I haven't weighed or measured myself (to be honest, I get really obsessive about the numbers and it ends up hurting me, so I don't allow myself to check my weight more than once per month), I like the feeling of accomplishment I get just from sticking this out so far and finding ways to adapt to it. Do I think I will follow something this strict long term? No. Do I think that I will eat healthier after this? Yes! I never realized how few veggies and fruits I would eat daily, and how large I was making my portions of other foods. Honestly, I pretty much used to eat roughly 1 vegetable serving per day (yes, that is dismal). Now even though I'm not usually hitting my 5 servings, I'm at least getting 3 which is TRIPLE what I used to do! Chris has mentioned that he has noticed that he is feeling stronger and is also proud of the changes he has made - today he was able to stick to his plan despite the fact that there was a quarterly meeting today (which means free lunch, generally not super healthy)!

The food choices today were decent (ok actually the Tostadas were my fave recipe yet), with a few substitutions for things we were out of - here's the menu:

However, I don't really feel like writing about them today - I think today I just wanted to get that happy mind mentality out there for all of you so that you knew that even though this is a rough food plan with a difficult workout schedule, it's still something that allows for positivity! :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

21 Day Fix Day 4: "Behind"

Yes, the title of this post has two meanings - first, I spent most of the day running behind after dealing with a few unexpected travel issues (remember, I am a travel agent). And second, it was lower body day, so my behind is sore!

Here's the menu for today:

We had to modify a few things again, due to running out (or in the case of the peaches, me flat out forgetting to add them to the long grocery list) or me just not wanting it. I used some leftover taco meat on my salad for lunch rather than the cottage cheese which was a win! Then instead of the peach I put a little pico de gallo on my salad (not sure why that qualifies as a purple and not a green, since if I diced up all the ingredients individually they are all green...) which wasn't great so I ate around it.

Dinner was surprisingly filling, even despite the fact that the smaller sweet potato fries burned so we didn't eat a full 2 portions. I made sure that even though the steak was sirloin (which is already pretty lean) to trim off any excess fat at the edges.

I was looking forward to my "treat" today - three times per week you can have one of the designated treats in the book as a yellow equivalent (even though the measurement is a little larger than a yellow). Basically they are all chocolate except one, and since I cannot have chocolate due to caffeine intolerance, that left me one - but it was one of my faves, POPCORN! Yay! It's basically air popped popcorn with a little salt and some dried fruit and almonds. I'm not a huge almond fan and wanted to save money, so I just used the dried cranberries we already had prior to the program and popcorn. I couldn't see just having it air popped without a little something, so I used one of our teaspoons to spritz some olive oil on it and added cinnamon (one of my fave flavors AND a great anti-inflammatory!). Verdict? One cup of that treat is a PITIFUL amount! :( I wanted to eat the whole bowl of yummy goodness, not one tiny cup. The flavor was good though. I wish there was a way to make less airpopped popcorn in our popper - now I have several cups worth leftover and it's not really built into the rest of the planned days, so the popcorn will most likely go stale before we can use it up.

Today was the first day I didn't work out with Chris - I went to my usual personal training session while he did the video. I still had my trainer do lower body so we ended up doing a lot of the same exercises, but I also got the benefit of lots of wonderful stretching at the end!! So I'm a lot less sore than I think I would have been with the video. That's been my biggest complaint so far with the videos is that I don't feel she spends enough time on stretching - but that could be because of the number of times I've dealt with pain and injury so I'm a little obsessed with getting enough stretching!

Due to all of the running around like crazy, I didn't start on the menu for the next 5-6 days until late - so now I'm a little worried I'll have time to get it done! Hopefully Chris will help me with it this time now that we've both got a basic understanding of how it works.

In bookish news (yes, this is a BOOK BLOG lol) - I got a great package today from my friends at Gone Reading!! I can't wait to share with you everything I got - hopefully this diet won't interfere, but it might be a few days lol.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

21 Day Fix Day 3 - First "Rest Day"

Even though we woke up feeling less sore today, we still decided a rest day (a day with some light walking and stretching) was still a better idea than pushing forward with the next fitness video. It never hurts to be a little cautious in the beginning so we don't injure ourselves!

Here's what the Day 3 Menu looks like:

Breakfast was awesome, but we were pretty sure it would be - we had made "frog in the holes" with my bagel thins before. Lunch was also something we had eaten before, so we knew we'd enjoy that, too. Dinner was really good - I didn't realize that even though the recipe said 1 orange of parmesan cheese that it actually counted as part of a blue, so we ended up with 1/2 an extra blue and no orange today. Also, I guess we ran out of parmesan last week and I forgot to put it on our grocery list, so we subbed in mozzarella. It wasn't our only substitution today - I also didn't buy enough apples! So Chris had some watermelon (that I bought to make him watermelon-infused water; personally I love plain ol' ice water but I know he prefers flavored drinks so I wanted to make it easier on him) and I had a fruit cup.

One observation I have so far is that the portions are filling - IF you eat them! Since the foods aren't as appetizing to me, I've been eating less and thus feeling more hunger than I should. I hope that by next week I'll have found ways to combine the portions that will make me eat the full amounts - I especially have been skipping out on my veg portions.

I also just realized that this is Day 3, and I've only got 6 days of meal plans - so I need to start working on the next 6 days of food! I don't think I'd be able to plan for 7 days, as even 6 is risky when you are mostly buying fresh produce that you don't want to spoil. I got a little distracted today (more below) so I didn't think of it until just now, but I've still got a couple of hours tonight to get started.

In another turn of events, as I mentioned I am currently between day jobs. Yesterday I had been given the chance to start the onboarding process with a company I had applied for after waiting 4 weeks to hear back from another company that I was interested in working for. Well, today that company finally called back (in week 5) - apparently the local manager had gone out of town right after my last interview and had been gone the last two weeks, which is why they hadn't been able to put me through for the job until now! So I set it up to start their onboarding tomorrow, and now I have a choice to make as to which company I want to work for... it's a tough decision! My travel business will ALWAYS be first for me, but since commissions are irregular I like having a steady paycheck from a second part time job. Maybe you guys can help me choose? Here are the details:
1) Job #1 is the job that has taken over 5 weeks to get to the hiring phase. It's for an inventory company, and I would be acting in a supervisor capacity. I would only be losing $2/hour from my last job to start, with the potential to make up that difference within a year. I liked the regional director who interviewed me as well, and there is the potential after I am trained to get to take part in some International inventory trips to places like Germany and Sweden!! And of course, as a travel agent, I super love travel. However, the hours aren't great - lots of late nights and/or early early mornings - and the people I would be supervising have had some disciplinary problems and heavy turnover. Also, the dress code calls for wearing pants - personally, I HATE wearing pants and would rather wear a dress or skirt any day! lol they are a lot more comfy when you have "extra" weight, but the reason this position has pants is that there is a little bit of ladder climbing.
2) Job #2 I applied for last week Thursday, and they called me within two hours of submitting to do my first interview. They then set me up for my second interview for the next day, which I appreciated because I love it when things are punctual. That went well and she let me know that on Monday they would be sending me the information to start the onboarding process - very communicative, another thing I appreciated (rather than waiting around trying to find out whether or not I had a job). The hours are really good - basically, I'm assigned a store to do some research on (either a product or a display) and need to visit it within a certain amount of days during business hours. That means the schedule is VERY flexible, which is great for me to be able to make sure my travel clients are always my priority. Plus, no late nights or super early mornings! However, when they contacted me Monday is when I found out about the pay - it's a variable pay rate depending on the task, which isn't ideal (I would hate having to guess what my paycheck would be each week) and I'd be losing anywhere from $7 to $2//hour in pay. $7/hour is a HUGE loss of pay - in a 10 hour work week, that's an extra $70 I'm losing! They also require slacks, but also collared shirts (shudder). If you look in my closet right now, I own exactly 1 collared shirt lol! I'd almost rather prefer a uniform at that point.

UPDATE: After posting this on Facebook earlier today, and getting feedback from family and friends, I decided to take job #2 and I called and declined the other offer. So by next week I should have a steady paycheck again! :) Yay for that!

Monday, July 28, 2014

21 Day Fix Day 2 - Off to a rough start

When we woke up this morning, boy were we sore!! I could feel my joints flaring up - (I was diagnosed with Osteitis Pubis several years ago, and along with it I have osteo-arthritis throughout my hips, back, shoulders, and knees) and was glad we were waiting until the afternoon to do the next workout. Here's the menu we had for today:

Breakfast was also a mixed bag - since I'm generally not a fan of eggs (unless they are put to use in a recipe or on a sandwich) I decided to use half a container of leftover taco meat and one egg to fulfill my one protein. It was good! Today also called for oatmeal... in the past, the only way I've enjoyed "oatmeal" was in the form of a cookie or a baked dish with tons of sugar, but I always want to try things at least once. I tried it, I hated it, I tried then moving it to a dish and baking it, still didn't like it. I probably got down 3-4 spoonfuls of the top, crispy part. I wasn't sure how to count that on my sheet so I called it 1/4 of each type (yellow, purple) though in reality it's probably less. Then I made up for the yellow by having a half of a gluten free English muffin with some coconut oil and cinnamon on it.

Sadly, lunch was underwhelming, so I only ate 1/2 of my meatballs. While decent, they were pretty dry (probably because they are from lean meat) and I desperately wanted a sauce of some kind - peanut, ketchup, whatever.

I stayed hungry throughout the day - I think part of it was that my body was craving sugar and more carbs, since that's what it is used to. However, I had something wonderful to fall back on - something that this program definitely does NOT provide: tools to battle the MENTAL side of the weight loss struggle from my Train Your Brain class at Square One Health Club! If you haven't heard of the club, you should really check it out - I used to work there, and the owners were on Season 3 of The Biggest Loser. Anyway, if you aren't in Omaha, I'm sorry but right now they don't offer the Train Your Brain class online or anywhere else in the country. If you are in Omaha, you should definitely consider signing up for the class - it is worth it!

Dinner was probably my favorite meal, I loaded up on a few extra veggies to fill myself up more. The workout was rough, but doable. The hardest part was that the order she did the workouts in was really weird and involved getting down on the floor for a couple exercises, then getting back up to do a couple, then back down again. To me, it was nearly torture, so I ended up just doing the exercises in a different order. Getting up and down off the floor, even when I'm not super sore, is difficult enough, but when I was so sore it was torture.

We decided in order to ease the pain for me that we will build in a rest day every third day. During our rest day we will just do light walking and some stretching, but no hard workout. This will probably reduce how much weight we can lose, but in the long term we feel it will be healthier for me so I don't have to raise my already high amount of daily anti-inflammatories.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

21 Day Fix - Day 1: Work, work and more work!

In case you missed yesterday's post, the cliff's notes version is that I am doing the 21 Day Fix program by Beachbody.

Today was day one, and the theme today? Work, work and more work! Here is the menu for today:

First, we went ahead and did our "Before" pictures and measurements/weights. I had already been measured/weighed a few days ago at my last personal training session, so we just did Chris'. The pictures were... well... painful, so we decided that unless we get some crazy good results at the end, we won't be posting the pictures. Hey - just because I am doing an honest review doesn't mean you all need to be seeing my "tub tub" (as I so fondly/cursingly call my belly).

I whipped up our breakfast, since it wasn't too far from what I used to eat every day. I added in some fresh dill and chives (thanks to my green thumb friend, and personal trainer, Kim!!) to give the eggs more texture and flavor. Verdict? YUMMY! I was afraid I wouldn't like it since my usual breakfast sandwich includes a whole gluten free O'Dough's Bagel Thin (I highly recommend them, they are yummy and only 100 calories each) with mayo, cheese, and only one egg. But this worked well for me, and the hubs loved his too!

Shortly after breakfast we tackled our first 21 Day Fix workout, which was the Total Body Cardio Fix. Remember that I only do personal training twice per week but otherwise am mostly sedentary, and my husband says he walks on the treadmill every day during his lunch break (of course, I have no way to verify that lol) but otherwise he doesn't really do regular workouts. Verdict? HOLY CRAP THAT WAS HARD WORK! The funniest part to me was that my hubs complained the entire time while I just powered through - he is always teasing me for being a "wimp" because my body hates me (maybe I'll touch on that tomorrow). Maybe my two personal training sessions per week have made me stronger than I thought! However, afterward boy, oh boy was I sore! Hubs hasn't complained about being sore as much as I have probably, so I suppose we are even. I'll probably be hooking up my e-stim (electrical stimulation) machine after this post to try and work out some of the pain in my hips and back but I still overall feel like I'm proud of how well I could keep up.

We made sure to eat our morning snack right after the workout - my trainer Kim always says that it's important to get a little carb and protein after a workout. I didn't bother with a picture - there's nothing interesting about an apple with 2tsp of peanut butter! I will note that this is the first time I bothered measuring out my PB - I'm a bit of a PB addict, so I usually lather it on very thickly. But surprisingly, I didn't need it!

I wish I could say we took it easy after all of that, but it's the weekend so that meant laundry and a few light chores. Soon enough, we found ourselves at lunch. That was probably the most surprising meal of the day - who knew that it would be sooo much food? We were so distracted that we forgot to add the cheese, so we ended up moving the cheese to dinner and having quesodillas rather than plain tortillas with our chili. Here's what the lunch looked like - it was only 1 red, 2 greens, and an orange!

Yes - that is a FULL SIZE dinner plate!! It was tasty too.

While tasty, it was a lot of work to prep all of that veg. Then we had to do more work, cleaning up all the dishes - that was load #1.

Thankfully the afternoon was pretty uneventful, but the salad didn't last as long for me, so I made the afternoon "snack". I based the recipe off a Meditterranean pasta dish I've made before, subbing the olives for mushrooms since I hadn't noticed when I first planned the menu that olives count as an orange (and not a green). It was good, and filling - but we still had a snack and dinner left for the day!

I worked on dinner while hubs pre-made tomorrow's lunch - yep, more work, but we weren't sure how else we'd be able to have something for Chris to bring to work with him. This created yet another large pile of dishes - that was load #2, and we have about 1/4 of a load of dirty dishes still left. This is definitely a labor-intensive, messy food program so far!

We weren't super hungry, but this is what our dinner ended up looking like:

I combined our last snack with our cherries to create a more fruity snack. I won't lie - I didn't actually finish all of my food! That's a shocker, as I figured this food plan (like any other plan I've tried in the past) would leave me hungry all the time. Verdict? NOT TRUE! I'm satisfied, and the food was actually good!

We've decided, since the workout today was so hard, that our workouts will now be in the afternoon once hubs gets home from work, so we aren't "useless" all day lol. I have the "benefit", if you will, of currently being between day jobs, so other than spending time on my travel business I have some extra flexibility to make those afternoon workouts work for me as well.

Final thoughts on Day 1? This has been a lot of work so far, but the food has been better than expected. I'm cautiously optimistic right now since I haven't had to struggle as much as I thought! Final counts had me short about 1/4 yellow, plus a little green/red from the chili I couldn't finish. Chris didn't eat any of his extra containers so he was short a green, purple, red, and tsp along with 1/4 yellow.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Sorta Recommended Read - Homegrown and Handmade by Deborah Niemann

Homegrown and Handmade: A Practical Guide to More Self-Reliant LivingHomegrown and Handmade: A Practical Guide to More Self-Reliant Living by Deborah Niemann
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

If you've ever considered participating in modern homesteading, this is the book for you! It would also be good for those who want to know more about: food gardening (urban or rural), raising chickens (some cities now allow them), and working with livestock (which has to be rural for the most part).
I wanted to read it because my husband and I have always wished we could live in a cohousing community, which is similar to a homestead except it is multiple families and generations living in a sustainable community. We also talked about running a homestead when we retired.
Which brings me to my next point - this book is also good at talking most people out of trying to run a homestead, because unless you can afford to live off one income, or can find a way to make money while homesteading, I doubt many people could afford the time or care it would take to make this a realistic way to live!
Some of the book is a little too boring and dry, although if you are only interested in one or two of the subjects you could skip the chapters that don't interest you. And some of it is a little too alarmist for me - yes, I disagree with some of the agricultural practices these days, but I don't feel the need to "breed out antibiotics".
Regardless, this is a decently good book on the subject and I recommend it for anyone interested in learning more. I will probably pass it on to a friend who is thinking about backyard chickens!

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Sorta Recommended Read - The Last Banquet by Jonathan Grimwood

The Last BanquetThe Last Banquet by Jonathan Grimwood
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was kind of like passing a gruesome accident that you don't really want to see, but you can't turn away. I loved the underpinnings of the French Revolution as told by a noble-turned-peasant-turned-noble-again, and the discussions of class and race in the society of old. But there were definitely some disgustingly graphic parts involving the main character's obsession with tasting everything (he probably had Pica, which wouldn't have been something diagnosable back then) - and I do mean EVERYTHING. The book is littered with disgusting recipes for everything from cat to human. There is also quite a bit of sex, for those of you who aren't really into reading novels with graphic sex scenes in them (and they also involved taste again, including tasting urine).

Overall, this wasn't my favorite book but I still felt it was worth reading until the end.

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The 21 Day Fix Diet and Exercise Program Day Zero - From a Couch Potato's Point of View

As it so often happens, late one night after having a bit much to drink, I saw an infomercial for a program that I "just had to have" - 21 Day Fix from Beachbody (yes, I have previously purchased both Slim in 6 AND P90, two other Beachbody programs, on two totally separate occasions, while drunk). Thankfully, this time around my husband was there to stop me from making an impulse buy, and told me we could think about it. 

Before I get any further - I am not a big drinker usually, I just so happen to like watching infomercials the few times I actually do drink. ;) True story. Also, I have basically no alcohol tolerance, so I only need one drink to get drunk. Another true story. 

Anyway, so I thought on it some more the next day, and the day after, and decided to look into it more. I really wasn't interested in the workout program, just the eating program (I refuse to use the "D" word - diet - because just thinking of that word makes me hungry. But I'm sure we'll talk more about that in a later post.). I scoured the internet trying to find a way to purchase just the containers, and thought I had a solution - a website that promised they'd be available on July 15th. However, when I returned to the website the date had been changed to September - and since I'm the type of person that once I make up my mind, I'm ready to buy, I decided I'd have to buy the entire program. At the time, I couldn't find any guides out there that told me what the sizes of the containers were (apparently it's "proprietary" information). 

I received the kit earlier this last week, and eagerly read through the food guide after swallowing my disappointment at the teeny tiny container sizes - they look a lot bigger in the infomercial! I thought the container lists were pretty comprehensive, but the "recipes" were a HUGE disappointment - telling me how to prepare Quinoa isn't a recipe! The only true recipes were the shake recipes, and due to my gluten allergy and the fact that I pretty much HATE protein shakes (having never found one that I liked) those weren't of any use to me. 

An internet search yielded some interesting recipes, and I came up with a couple on my own based on things I already like to eat. I also stumbled upon the container sizes, now that I've already purchased the program! So if you decide to try this program at some point but don't need the fitness dvd's, here's the conversion chart: 

Why am I sharing this with all of you? First of all, I wanted a review out there that wasn't from a Beachbody coach! Everywhere I look there are Beachbody coaches with annoying chat pop-ups on their blogs trying to get me to pay for coaching or buy more programs, etc. and frankly, it's annoying. I am NOT a Beachbody coach, nor am I particularly interested in a fitness career... ok, let's face it - I'll choose snuggling into a couch with a good book over working out ANY day! Hence, why I have a book blog. And a Goodreads. And the people at my local Half Price Books store know me by name... ;) 

Secondly, I'm sharing this with you because I figured it's more helpful to learn about something from someone who isn't already fit, who doesn't already work out every day, and who doesn't already eat in a healthy way. I do work out about twice per week with a personal trainer, but it's mostly as a way to avoid going back to physical therapy after a couple of rounds of surgery and as ongoing treatment for a joint inflammation disorder. I'm overweight, love junk food, and make poor choices on a daily basis which leads me to having a harder time losing weight. 

Finally, I figured it couldn't hurt to just put it out there so that I would have to be held accountable by my friends here on the internet! It's a littler harder to give up when I know people are following up on me. 

Today is day zero - the day BEFORE we start the program. It took me roughly 5 hours of work to develop a menu and grocery list - yes, it was a LONG process! Mostly because I had to dig around on the internet to find recipes that I liked that worked with my container allotment. Below you will find my menu plans and grocery list, as well as links to the recipes that I used. The only thing that is missing on here are the guides - if you do a search, I'm pretty sure you can find a pdf version of the 21 Day Fix guides (I just don't want to post it and get in trouble with the internet police or whatever). 

So far the biggest down side has been the increased cost of groceries - normally we spend about $80-$100/week on groceries. With the list and menu I made, and even using some things we already had in the house, our grocery bill was a whopping $143.13! I shopped at Baker's, so at least I got to rack up some fuel points, but yuck. Next week we might try hitting the farmer's market for some of the produce to see if we can bring the cost down a little. I also subbed in some canned/frozen foods for fresh, and one of my pounds of ground beef I went with a less lean selection to help cut back costs. 

Wish me luck - and feel free to join in and share how it goes for you as well! 

Breakdown: I am allowed 5 Green (Veggies), 3 Purple (Fruit), 5 Red (Lean Protein), 4 Yellow (Carbs), 1 Blue (Nuts/Dairy), 1 Orange (Seeds/Fats), and 5 Tsp of oils per day. My husband Chris will be adding an extra Green, Purple, Red and Tsp to his daily allotment.

Sorry the days are all over the place - I'm not used to using my scanner yet lol! To the right of Day 1 is the grocery list I used, you would probably need to modify based on what you have in your home currently. 


Mexican Salad, Chili, Chicken and Mushroom Marsala, Cheese Quesodilla, & Steak and Sweet Potato Fries -
Strawberry Oatmeal & Apple Pie Breakfast:
Asian Salad: **NOTE: I'm not making her dressing, just sticking with the dressing I have to make for the Mexican Salad for the whole week to save time and money**

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Recommended Read - Silevethiel by Andi O'Connor

Silevethiel (The Vaelinel Trilogy, #1)Silevethiel by Andi O'Connor
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Journey back to a world where kings ruled and assassination plots hid behind corners while mythical beings roamed the land in this good book! I loved the elves and the idea of lions being guardians, and the story was paced just right. The love story theme was a little too cliche, which is what holds this back from being a 5 star book. But overall a great fantasy read for those that like the genre!

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