Review: The Obsession by Nora Roberts

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I haven’t read too many of Nora Roberts’ standalone books but I must say I think I prefer them over the trilogies she writes. Her latest one, The Obsession, was so good! I couldn’t put it down and when I did have to put it down, I couldn’t wait to pick it back up again. It was a mixture of suspense, drama, romance, and humor and I enjoyed every bit of it. An added plus was the dog character. Books are even more enjoyable to when they have pets in the story. As long as the dog doesn’t die, of course.

Naomi Bowes’ childhood was interrupted when she discovered a woman her father had kidnapped, locked in a cellar on their property. While that was the beginning of the end for him, it was also an event that never left her while growing up (obviously). Reminders, new stories, book deals, there was always something that connected her to her father’s crimes.

The first half of the book details what happens after she finds the young woman and how life changes for her, her brother Mason, and their mother. I found the second half of the story moved at a quicker pace. She’s an adult now and settling down in a new city with new people. Of course the love interest is there too and that relationship alone was pretty electric.

Now that I’ve read a few of her standalone books, I may just try to read them all. Don’t get me wrong, the trilogies I have read were good, but sometimes I don’t want to commit to reading all of the books. It’s hard for me to start a series and not finish it. This morning I added a bunch of her other novels to my TBR list and I’ll probably add more when I get off work today.

Happy Saturday!

 

It’s working!

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I know it’s still early but oh my goodness, Keto is working! I started on Monday August 8th and I’m very proud that I have not cheated one time. For one thing, cheating would only hurt me since it would through my body out of ketosis and I’d have to start over. My co-worker at the library gave me a bunch of books on the low carb lifestyle, including some cookbooks. It will take while for me to get through them since there are so many but I’m grateful to her for letting me borrow them.

Giving up the sugary snacks wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be since I’m still able to make sugar-free treats when I feel the need. I have some favorites right now but there are many more out there I haven’t tried yet. I haven’t had the pasta craving yet but when that comes, I have a couple of recipes in mind. Since I can still have my beloved cream sauce, I’m going to make some type of Alfredo dish.

It’s amazing how many Keto resources are out there. I was never interested in Reddit before but once I found the Keto subreddit, I was hooked. If I ever have a question about something, it’s almost guaranteed someone else has had the same questions. The search feature on there has helped me out tremendously. When it comes to public message boards and Facebook groups, I’m always hesitant to post because I don’t want to come off sounding stupid or dumb. It’s silly but whatever.

I’ve still been working out but haven’t been running as much. I don’t think my body is fully fat adapted yet but hopefully it will be soon. Lately I’ve been doing a lot of cycling and elliptical at the gym. I have a race in November so I really need to get on a training schedule. The one thing I have noticed as far as changes in my body is the cramping. Yesterday I took a spin class at my gym and during the stretch-session after I was over, I could feel a cramp start in my legs. Increasing my sodium will hopefully help with this issue. Egg drop soup is a quick and easy way to get that in!

Anyway, I’ll report back in two weeks on my progress. I haven’t been this excited about weight loss since I lost weight many years ago doing Weight Watchers.

Heyyy


Hello!

Happy hump day!
So the month with my nephews flew by! They left yesterday morning with my parents and I miss them already. It was rough at times dealing with the two year old because you never knew if he was going to have a meltdown or not, but I loved having them around. I’m not sure if them coming during the summer will be a yearly thing but I wouldn’t complain if it was. The next time I see them, Damien will be well into the school year and Ray will hopefully be able to say some words. He tries to talk now, but usually I have no idea what he is saying.

Now that the boys are gone, I can get back into a regular gym routine. I didn’t go as much as I could have since I wanted to spend time with the boys in the evening. I don’t get off work until 8 during the week and they’d usually go to bed by 9, 9:30, so I wanted to spend as much time with them as I could. I did a lot of evening walks on the treadmill which was fine, but I miss the different machines the gym has to offer. Yesterday I ran for the first time in a couple weeks and it felt great. I used my new Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15 running shoes and thankfully they didn’t hurt my feet like the GTS 16s did. I hope when the 17s come out they address the narrowness issue that I felt at the top of my foot. 

The doctor’s appointment for my shoulder is next week. I’m hoping they’ll give me an MRI since the X-Ray I had a few weeks ago didn’t show anything. Something is wrong because I shouldn’t have this much pain for no reason. 

Anyway, can you believe it’s already August? Haha, new month, new goals right? I’d planned on doing another round of Whole30 this month but instead I’m going to transition to the Keto — short for Ketogenic — diet (low carb, high fat). I don’t like that it’s called a diet since it’s really more of a lifestyle change. I’ve been doing research online and listening to some podcasts (2 Keto Dudes) and I’m excited to try it. Several women in one of my Facebook fitness groups have done very well . I’m at the point where I just want to be able to stick to something long-term. Low carb will be extremely difficult the first couple weeks but I’m prepared for that. My sister-in-law started this week and she’s been keeping me up to date on her symptoms. Best thing for me about this way of eating is I can still eat cheese! My tentative start date is next Monday, 8/8. 

Have a great day! 😀

I’ve been MIA

Gooood Morning!

I didn’t realize it had been almost a month since my last post. Oops. 

Things have been pretty busy now that my nephews are in town. I was off from work last week and just hung out with them. It’s been quite entertaining. At 2yrs old and 6yrs old, they’re both full of energy. I give much credit to the parents out there, especially when it comes to meltdowns. Oh my goodness, Ray (the 2yr old), will fall out over the littlest things! It’s funny and frustrating at the same time. 

Even though I’ve been keeping busy with the kids, I’m still getting workouts in. I have an ortho appt for my shoulder next month so I’m mainly just doing cardio and lower body workouts. I miss weights!

In addition to my DietBet, I’m also currently doing a StepBet. I can’t remember what week I’m on but this has kept me moving and making sure I meet my daily steps goals. Playing Pokémon Go has helped too! 


I made a vision board for myself the other day. I’m using it to track my weight and weekly goals. I’ll also wrote a motivational quote each week. It’s super simple right now but I like how it came out. I have a photo of Serena Williams because she is my body inspiration. The paper heart is from my first round of the 28-Day Jumpstart with the Fitgirls Guide. Haha, I tried to blur out my childhood wallpaper.🙂

On the reading front, I’m still reading a lot. I’m currently 11 books ahead of my Goodreads goal. 


I had to leave Uprooted by Naomi Novik unfinished. I just couldn’t get into the story. There were many good reviews and I really wanted to like it but it just didn’t happen. 

Currently Reading

An Echo of Bone (#7) – Diana Gabaldon — I love the Outlanders series so much I don’t want it to end!

Glass Sword (#2) – Victoria Aveyrd — I enjoyed the first book in this series but have yet to get hooked to the second book. I’m only about 60 pages in so there’s still time. 

Cress (#3) – Marissa Meyer — just started this one but I loved the first two books and I don’t think this one will disappoint. 

Alexander Hamilton — Ron Chernow — I’m embarrassed to say I’m still reading this! The book isn’t boring or anything but I keep getting drawn to my fiction books. I’m aiming to finish this by end of August. 
Have an awesome day, Friday will be here soon!

Fun times ahead 

Hello! 

Happy Hump Day 😀

I’ve been MIA lately but only because I haven’t really had too much to blog about. It’s hard to believe the year is more than half over. 

Anyway, I’m really looking forward to July because my nephews will be here visiting for the month. My parents are flying to Georgia to pick them up next week and then they’ll be here until the first week of August. It’s going to be fun and probably a little stressful too. They’re 2 and 6 soo yeah, it will be interesting.  Hope I don’t lose my mind! Just kidding🙂

I’m taking a week off from work after they arrive and will try and take a couple more days off throughout the month. My mom and I have a few things planned but I need to think of some other activities for them to do. I’m pretty sure my oldest nephew will stay glued to his Nintendo DS is we let him, lol. Not going to happen though. 

I think I may I’ve finally regained control of my eating habits. I’ve been bringing the chicken breast burrito bowl to work for lunch and keeping dinner simple with one of the meals from the Fitgirl’s Guide. I’m still trying to incorporate Intermittent Fasting M-F so I haven’t been eating breakfast. 

As far as exercising goes, I’ve been doing mostly cardio for the last few weeks. Somehow injured my arm and my bicep muscle is sore and feels weak when I lift my arm. I’m anxious to get back to lifting so I’m hoping the pain will reduce over the next few weeks. The great thing about focusing on cardio is I’ve been improving my mile pace. I starting using my Nike+ app again strictly for running so I can track any improvements on my mile times. 

Ohh yeah, I think my BF is going to join a gym! This is exciting for me because now I won’t have to skip workouts on the days I go to visit him after work. He is thinking of joining Fitness 19 and since they don’t have contracts and their month to month fees aren’t too expensive, I’m probably going to join that one too. I still plan on keeping my other gym membership. We don’t plan on doing the same workouts but we will be getting healthy together. 

I’m way ahead of my Goodreads challenge. Last time I checked I was 11 books ahead. My goal is set for 60 and I’ve read 40 so far. Not too shabby. I plan on reading ton during my vacation, I can’t wait. 

The books I’ve read this month :

Heaven and a Earth — Nora Roberts

The Selection — Kiera Cass

Humans of NY Stories — Brandon Stanton

A Breath of Snow and Ashes — Diana Gabaldon

A Coury of Mist and Fury — Sarah J. Maas

Skin Game — Jim Butcher

Scarlet — Marissa Meyer

Face the Fire — Nora Roberts

Enjoy your Wednesday! 

Ugh!


^^^seriously, lol

So apparently I don’t have as much self-control as I thought. I’ve been doing IF about 4 days a week but am finding myself eating too many non-healthy things during my eating window. If I’m going to do that, IF is kind of pointless. Yes, I’m fasting, but if I’m still going to go over my macros (by a lot), then I’m just sabotaging myself. 

I wasn’t even going to blog about this because I consider it a failure but I need to be honest with myself. My spirits and self-esteem have been very low lately and it’s mainly because of my recent weight gain. I’m afraid to see where I’m at now considering the free-for-all I’ve been allowing the last week and a half. 

Next weigh-in for my dietbet is June 20th. It’s mandatory and while I clearly won’t make the goal for that time period, I’ll at least know the damage I’ve caused. All I can do between now and then is stop allowing myself to eat whatever I want, anytime I want. 

I mentioned before that I have a weakness for sweets. Both of my jobs always have some type of tempting snack on the counter in my office or in the break room. I don’t understand why it is so damn hard for me to pass these up. It’s as if my mind just can’t say no. 

Anyway, even though I won’t make my dietbet goal this month, I’m going to do what I can this next week to get things back on track. 

Everything hasn’t been all bad. I gave up soda for this month and that has been going well. My workouts lately have been mostly cardio. I’m unable to do any heavy lifting right now due to a nagging shoulder injury. So, I’m going to focus on cardio and lower body for now. I can still squat to my heart’s content. I can’t give up. 

Review: Brooklyn by Colm Tóibín

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I liked this book, but didn’t love it. The main character, Eilis (pronounced Aye-lish), lives in Ireland with her mom and her sister, Rose. Eilis is taking bookkeeping courses and Rose works at an office and plays golf whenever she has the opportunity. Eilis eventually gets a part-time job with one of the local shopkeepers and while it is better than nothing, it isn’t her ideal job, especially since the shopkeeper is an unpleasant woman.

When the opportunity to go to America comes up, Rose helps get everything together so Eilis can go. Rose will stay in Ireland to help take care of their mother. Eilis’ trip is sponsored by a priest from her town, Father Flood. Once she arrives in America, she is guaranteed a job at one of the local department stores in Brooklyn.

The story is mostly about Eilis’ time in Brooklyn and the life she starts there. Loneliness, homesickness, love, and sadness are all part of the story. At first I thought I wasn’t going to like it because it started out super slow but then there was a point in the book when everything turned around. Once that happened, the actions of Eilis really started to annoy me. I wasn’t satisfied with the ending, but you can’t please everyone.

Now that I read the book, it’s only natural that I see the movie. A friend told me the movie was better than the book, which doesn’t happen often. I hope in this case it is true.