Blogger BookClub

As I mentioned last month, I love to read. I was excited when I saw this Blogger Book club on Melissa's blog. I have always wanted to be in a book club :)

This month's book is The Help by Kathryn Stockett.

I have already read this book and it is on my favorites list.

1. What is the book about?

Synopsis from Amazon:
Aibileen is a black maid in 1962 Jackson, Mississippi, who's always taken orders quietly, but lately she's unable to hold her bitterness back. Her friend Minny has never held her tongue but now must somehow keep secrets about her employer that leave her speechless. White socialite Skeeter just graduated college. She's full of ambition, but without a husband, she's considered a failure. Together, these seemingly different women join together to write a tell-all book about work as a black maid in the South, that could forever alter their destinies and the life of a small town...

2. What were your initial thoughts on the book? Were you impressed? Disappointed?

I read this book in the course of three days while on vacation in Maine. I was hooked from the first chapter. I learned a lot about that time and how things were. I would definitely called this book an "eye opener." I was impressed with this book because I stepped out of my normal reading to read this because my mother-in-law recommended it. 

3. Favorite quotations from the book.

“You is kind. You is smart. You is important.”

“All my life I'd been told what to believe about politics, coloreds, being a girl. But with Constantine's thumb pressed in my hand, I realized I actually had a choice in what I could believe.” 

4. What did you like most about the book?

I loved that it opened my eyes to a lot of things I was not aware of. I also like the humor that is weaved into the story. Kathryn does an amazing job painting a picture of what life was life for Skeeter and the help. 

5. Would you recommend this book to a friend? 

I would definitely recommend this to a friend. I have been trying to get my brother to read it, he has become a big reader and I think he would like it.

I am the type of person that has to read the book before watching the movie associated with it. I read the book before the movie was even thought of. When I saw the movie I was happy to see they kept with the story line of the book the way they did. There was a couple things that were taken out {like the male running naked in the backyard}, but for the most part it was pretty much on track with the book.

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Friday 5 :)

  • Today is my day off :) That deserved its own line. 
  • I am going to be brave today. I am going to try on bathing suits. I only have a couple that fit now. I am glad I kept the suits I had from years ago. I will try to be brave enough to snap some photos, but no guarantees. I am nervous but I am also anxious to see what size I am. The xtra larges I have are way too big.
  • I wish I could tell you we have big plans for the weekend, but nope. I have to work an over night shift on Saturday night and Tim is volunteering. Mason will be with Judy for the night and probably go to church in the morning. 
  • Yesterday I took a walk with Judy in the morning and then Mason and I came home for a little nap. He was being fussy so I laid down with him. When I woke up it was five minutes before I was supposed leave for work. 
  • I have flowers on my zucchini plants in the garden! I am very excited. I will take a picture of them if it ever stops raining. 

That is all from me today. I am going to get a workout in before it is time to get ready to leave for a little shopping :)

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11 Months!

11 months, 1 month away from being a year old, I cannot believe it. It is only a matter of time now until Mason starts walking. He can walk around now just barely holding one of our hands. He has tried a few times to walk, but no luck yet.

This past month brought a few firsts.
  • Mason tried ice cream and like it. Tim went to the squad rooms while I was at work one night and while he was out of the room the couple people watching him gave him a little vanilla ice cream. I had no doubt that he would like it because I LOVE ice cream.
  • Tim gave Mason some peanut butter. No reaction and he seemed to enjoy it. 
  • He has started climbing on everything - Tim, me, furniture, into the fridge, you know the normal stuff
  • He had his first bee sting. I was getting ready for work one afternoon and he was in the bedroom with me. I heard him start crying and when he sat up from being face down in a comforter I saw a big bee in the comforter. Mason was crying, but stopped when I picked him up. When I called Tim Mason was giggling so I figured he was not stung. After I calmed down I did see that his hand was a little swollen and red. 
  • Mason attended his first motocross event. Tim and I went up with EMS and brought Mason along. It was a gloomy day, but he seemed to have a good time. 
  • We started feeding Mason what we are eating for dinner. He has had Cheeseburger Macaroni, Elbow with cheese, Chicken, Pasta Salad, Peas

Mason got his 8th tooth this month. He now has 4 on top and 4 on the bottom.
He climbs the stairs at Nain & Pop's house like they are nothing now. No hesitation anymore - he just motors up them.

Next month will bring even more firsts. We are gong to Maine for our first vacation and overnight trip with Mason. He is spending this night with my mom for the first time.

Tim and I are trying to figure out ways to get Mason off the bottle, maybe not completely, but for most of the time. How do we transition to milk? So many questions...
Any moms out there want to give advice to some first time parents? 

Happy Thursday :)

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Weigh In Wednesday 6-26

This happened last night... 

I was doing dishes and heard something. When I turned around I found a Cheerio mess. 

Pretty Strong Medicine

The last couple weeks I feel like my eating has been off. I get in these "snacky moods" and want to eat everything in sight. I have not been good about my tracking and MFP is lonely. I started yesterday and made sure I tracked everything.

I need to cut out the Mike's Hard Lemonade drinks too. I have been good about my alcohol intake for the most part, but the last two weeks I have been having a drink with dinner. I read an article about how the FDA or some organization is trying to get companies to put the nutritional label on alcoholic beverages. That would be great for me. I like seeing the calorie count and it usually deters me from having it.

Now time for the dreaded weigh in...
A gain of 1.6 lbs :( I am very embarrassed by this weigh in. I did not even want to post it, but I want to be honest on here. This is definitely a result of bad eating and alcohol. I need to break through this barrier and get my weight loss going again.

Don't forget to link up with us :) I love reading the stories and meeting new bloggers.


Weekend Recap

I am beginning to look forward to this weekend recap. I love reliving the weekend.

Mason and I took a nice 3.3 mile walk. I really like my Columbia skort with this Target racer back tank.  Mason look pretty cute in that hat too.

We went to graduation at my alma mater Friday night. A couple of the members of the squad were graduating so we wanted to go show support.
Mason was great throughout the ceremony. Judy did have to walk him around once to calm him down. Tyler was very happy to have graduated and have it be over with.

I had to work from midnight until six a.m. so I slept until a little after ten. i woke up to  Mason slamming Nutmeg's food dish on the floor. We did some stuff around the house and then we went to meet Judy.
Judy & I went out on the lake in the afternoon for a little kayaking. It was nice and the water did not feel that bad. After a little trip around the lake we went for a walk with the kiddos.

Sunday during the day was spent doing pretty much nothing. It was a nice relaxing day. We had a wake to go to in the evening. Below is a picture of the back of the Memorial Card. I usually read these and wonder what they have to do with the situation, but this one was perfect I thought.

Mason went into a big pool swimming for the first time. He really liked it and I am sure we will be swimming a lot this summer. It started storming after I got out of work so we came home and I worked out. After my workout the sun came back out so we went to the pool.

I got a great sweat session in with Jillian this morning and I am hoping to get on the treadmill tonight after work if Mason wants to cooperate.

Anyone kayak? Any ideas for back support?

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10 Things I Live For

This morning I attended a funeral for a good friend of mine. He was an amazing person and I will miss him dearly. I have not been to many funerals, but I must say that the ones with military honors are pretty powerful. When Taps starting playing I lost it. I hope Aaron is at peace now.

It is HOT today. I was going to get up this morning and workout while Tim took Mason to daycare, but I could not get out of bed. The plan is to go swimming after work with Mason if the rain holds off.


This week's theme is - 10 Things I Live For

Mason - I can vaguely remember my life before Mason came along, but I don't want to go back. I love having that little guy around. He is our entertainment most nights. He had taught us a lot about our selves and what we are capable of, which is a lot more than we thought. That tiny human being is the center of our lives, we live everyday for him and his future. 

My Husband - My husband is amazing. There are times I will vent about little things he does to annoy me, but when I look at the big picture I really have nothing to complain about. Tim does a lot of little things for me that sometimes I take for granted. I try to make life easier on him. I make sure that his socks are clean, he has lunch items available during the week, things are ready for Mason when he has to be with him while I am at work, dinner is ready when he gets home most of the time, and anything else he may need. It is just the way I am, I want him to be happy and not have to worry about little things. 

Photography - Nothing professional of course, but I love documenting life. Tim thinks I take too many photos, but what does he know? I just wish he was more into photo taking so I could be in some photos. 

Snuggles - I love those moments when Mason still wants to curl up on me and fall asleep or just be close. I said when he was little that I could see why people have more children because of the newborn snuggles. 

Watching Tim with Mason - I have mentioned this before but I love watching Tim with Mason. He is an amazing dad. He loves teaching him things and talking to him. I cannot wait to see them together when Mason is old enough to do stuff like build and create things. 

Watching our child(ren) grow - I enjoy seeing Mason figure out how things work. I am amazed when he figures out how to get toys to work or open and close doors. The best is when he notices something or does something that make us think "wow he remembered how to do that." The other day he climbed up the stairs like they were nothing. I remember when he could barely get up the first couple steps now there is no hesitation. 

Helping the community - I have been on the rescue squad for almost ten years and an EMT for more than five. I enjoy volunteering and honestly do not even think about it that way. It is just a way of life for us. We are very much involved in the organization (Tim is a Lieutenant and I am the Treasurer). We are also on the local fire department, Tim is a firefighter and I take medical calls. 

Fall - My favorite season is fall. I love the weather and the foliage. Living in Upstate NY and being so close to Vermont we get the beautiful colors in the mountains. 

Baking & Cooking - I like making new dishes and treats. Trying new recipes is fun for me. I am always afraid of failing at it, but Tim is pretty good at eating everything I make. I make cupcakes for birthdays at work. If the birthday person is ok with trying something new I usually try a new butter cream frosting flavor. 

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Zola Review

A couple weeks ago I was given the chance to try Zola. I have wanted to try coconut water. I see it in the health food stores, but I was always afraid to buy it. I did not want to spend the money and then not like it.

I received:
  • Coconut water without pulp
    • Zola Coconut Water is perfect for hydrating on the go.  It’s like cracking a fresh coconut and sticking in a straw. With no preservatives and no added sugar, Zola is the delicious and refreshing way to replenish, rehydrate, and recover. {website info}
  • Coconut water with pulp
    • NEW! Zola’s newest addition, Coconut Water with Pulp makes it easy to stay naturally hydrated. It contains five essential electrolytes (potassium, sodium, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium), and is a delicious and refreshing way to replenish, rehydrate and recover. By adding pieces of real coconut pulp, Zola’s Coconut Water with Pulp delivers a completely new hydration experience. {website info}
  • The Original Acai Juice
    • Zola Brazilian Açaí goes from berry to bottle fast. Real fast. So you get more of that natural goodness: fresh berry flavor, antioxidant power, and heart healthy omega fatty acids. You can see it in the vibrant color and taste it in every sip. {website info}
  • I also received some fun sunglasses in a great color for summer

I tried the coconut water at work one day and did not care for it. I don't think the flavor was strong enough for me. I decided to try the water with pulp in a smoothie. I usually stick with strawberries and bananas for my smoothies, but I decided to get outside the box I like to stay in and try something different. I mixed strawberries, the coconut water and some pineapple juice. Nothing too crazy. It was good and it tasted tropical.

I am not sure I would drink the coconut water by itself again. It was good as an added flavor in a smoothie, but I think that is all I would use it for.

***I did receive these products free of charge, opinions are my own***

Has anyone ever tried coconut water? Opinions? Recipe ideas?

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5 on Friday 6-21

  • Today is graduation day. There are a couple of kids graduating that are on the squad so we are going to watch. The graduation is outside on the front lawn of the school so it will be nice to be outside and not stuffed in a gym. I cannot believe it has been 8 years since I graduated. I am so glad I don't still have that hair cut, I should have known it would not look good with a cap on. 
  • I had a close friend pass away early Monday morning. This week has been rough for me and many others. He was a great guy. He is the reason I joined the rescue squad almost 10 years ago. I hope he is at peace now. I am trying to remember the good times from years ago which definitely helps with coping. 
  • Mason has been Mr Fussy Pants this week. I am not sure if he did not feel good or he has a tooth coming in, but geesh. Of course he was good for Nain and Pop Wednesday night when they had him. Wednesday morning and early afternoon was awful. He was over tired and would not sleep for more than an hour. At one point he did not want to be held or put down, that was fun. Last night he was not very good either. I think when he does not get the proper naps he needs he gets very fussy. Here is Mason Wednesday morning... nice and cute. 

I like him better like this that day -

  • 80 degrees today! Wahoo! I am ready for another walk outside. Last night was perfect weather. We cooked kabobs on the grill and hung out outside while we waited for those to be done. I like not being cooped up in a house all the time. The garden is growing like crazy from all the rain and now the sunshine. I am just happy it is finally feeling like summer! 

  •  I have to mention that the Price Chopper in my area has the nicest butchers. I went for advice on what to get for kabobs and he pointed out a piece of meat on sale. Then he offered to chunk it up and marinate it {they marinate & season for free!}. The meat was delicious. I never used to ask the butcher anything, but now I will definitely ask for their opinions. 

Working until 2 today then it is off to graduation tonight :)

Any exciting plans for the weekend?

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