(This post is linked with Hopeful Leigh’s What I’m Into post. Check it out here.)
I had high hopes for July. My June reading list was extensive and I hoped to continue that trend into July. And then…. something happened. I will share later. Keep reading.
But I did succeed in reading a few books. Here they are:
Saturday by Ian McEwan was the best piece of fiction I have read in a long, long time. Each night when I finished reading, I would marvel, sometimes to myself, sometimes to Jimmie, about the genius of this author. The first chapter was a bit slow, and I must admit I nearly gave up on it. I am so glad I persevered. The entire novel takes place within a 24 hour time span in the life of one man. It is insightful and surprising, sad and hopeful. I am excited to read more of McEwan’s work.
The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty was a solid summer read. It kept my interest and was the kind of entertainment I relish during lazy summer days. I will say that I thought the end dragged on a bit much. It was interesting after reading Saturday reading this book, which covers a 50 year time span.
Bread and Wine by Shauna Niequist was beautiful and moving. This is storytelling at its finest. I loved the heart I felt on each and every page. God has been prodding me and challenging me in the area of hospitality for a couple of years now, and this book opened my eyes to the profound impact hospitality can have. I earmarked so many pages with fantastic recipes. I can’t wait to make some of them. I have a feeling that I will re-read this book many times.
Remember when I said I had high hopes for the books I would read in July? Well, television happened. We got rid of cable and hadn’t been watching much, if any, television. Then I had one of those nights when I just wanted to curl up in bed and watch something.
Friends, let me just tell you, I finished all four seasons in the month of July. I watched episodes on Netflix every night, late into the night. I was hooked so fast and fell in love with the characters in a way that has only happened with a couple of other television series.
Blame my wimpy reading list on this show right here. Then watch the first episode on Netflix.
Make fun all you want, but I own all seven seasons of Gilmore Girls on DVD. I get in the mood to watch this series from time to time. I finished season 7 in July. It’s always a little sad saying goodbye to Lorelai and Rory, at least until next time I start the series over….
Funny story. My mom saw the DVD’s at my house a few weeks ago. I gave her season 1, not sure if she would get into it. She called me a couple of days later, asking for all seven seasons. She and my aunt had spent lazy days at her camper, watching Gilmore Girls. They fell in love with it. How can you not?
As I announced a couple of months ago, I have given up sweets and soda for the rest of 2013. It has been going really well. I had a successful cheat day on July 4th (which is part of the plan). I have had a little Nutella two times in two months. I also have eaten some fruit pops that are very lightly sweetened, but only a handful of times.
Then about a month ago, Jimmie’s doctor recommended that he go on a wheat-free diet (based on the research in this book.) We discussed it and decided to dive in. We have eliminated nearly all wheat from our diet and most carbs. We are working toward adhering to the paleo diet. Basically, we eat high quality meats and eggs, tons of fresh, organic vegetables, some fruit and a small amount of dairy.
Jimmie and I have both lost weight and are learning day by day how to change our eating habits. Here are a couple of things making our life easier right now:
1. Nom Nom Paleo – This is a great website with lots of paleo recipes. There are so many websites out there, but this is one my brother (who adheres strictly to the paleo diet) recommended.
2. Eggs and feta. I have never been a breakfast eater. I am now making myself an egg scramble each morning with mushrooms, peppers, spinach, whatever veggies are around the house, and… FETA. I have always loved Feta cheese but had never tried it in my eggs. This has made me a breakfast convert.
3. Trader Joe’s. Trader Joe’s has long been my favorite grocery store. Now, with their extensive offerings of gluten-free items, we can find affordable groceries that fit our wheat-free diet. We go every Sunday evening, spend about $100 and are (mostly) set for the week.
4. Noblesville Real Food Market. My brother is part of this market, and provides us with organic produce and high quality meats.
5. Live the Way’s Noblesville Community Garden Project. My husband has been working tirelessly to get this project off the ground and now we are (literally) enjoying the fruits of our labor. We have been eating tons of fresh kale, broccoli, spinach, zucchini, beets, beet greens, turnips, peas, tomatoes and more. It is so rewarding eating food I planted myself.
I’m also into the pool:
I have a new love for downtown Indianapolis after our trip on the 4th of July:
And I’m hopelessly in love with this newborn. Ah, Ruby: (read my prayer for her here)
What about you?: What are you into? I would love to hear about it.