Monday, January 10, 2011

Book Review!

I recently completed another book for the Chick Lit challenge!  It was Not My Daughter by Barbara Delinsky.  If you haven't read it yet, I recommend it!  It was about high school senior girls who are best friends and decide to make a pregnancy pact.  They basically agree to all get pregnant and raise their children together.  (Crazy, I know!)  Their mothers are all friends and help each other deal with the huge decision their daughters have made.

I liked this book. The fact that a high school pregnancy pact recently made news headlines made this story much more believable for me. Otherwise I would have a very difficult time believing intelligent high school seniors could act so immaturely. Most of the characters annoyed me but I really did enjoy the story.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Spicy Sweet Potato Fries

Tonight Josh and I tested out a new recipe!  We both have been trying to eat healthy and LOVE sweet potato fries so we decided to make some.  They came out delicious so I wanted to share the recipe on here in case any of my readers are interested.  We found the recipe on Stephanie Cooks blog.  If you don't know Stephanie Cooks- I highly recommend her!  Many of our regular and favorite meals come from her blog.

Spicy Sweet Potato Fries
Source: Stephanie Cooks Original

2 large sweet potatoes
2 tsp. canola oil
1-2 tsp. taco seasoning (you can use packaged instead!)
1/2 tsp. Lawry's seasoning salt
1/4 tsp. cajun seasoning
cooking spray

1- Preheat the oven to 400.
2- Wash, dry, and peel the potatoes. Slice into even strips.
3- Toss the potatoes and oil in a zipper bag. Toss well to evenly coat.
4- Add seasonings to the bag, toss. (Start off with less that you might want, then add more if you feel it's not enough.)
5- Spray a cookie sheet with cooking spray. Lay fries in an even layer. Bake until browned on top, about 15-20 minutes. Flip. Bake another 15 minutes. (Cooking times will vary based on him thick you can the fries). Cook until soft inside and crispy on the outside.

Josh and I didn't have those specific spices on hand so we used chili powder, italian seasoning, garlic powder, and seasoning salt.  We also didn't have a large ziplock baggie (we struggle...) so we just mixed it in a big bowl.  We added quite a bit of spices (...we didn't measure) and they came out perfectly to our liking!  They really had the perfect spicy/sweet mixture that we were looking for.  Yum!  

Book Review/Quote

I just finished my second book of 2011 and I really liked it!  It was a Historical Fiction book called Fireflies in December by Jennifer Erin Valent.  It was another I found for free on my nook!  :)  The story included well-developed characters, a unpredictable mystery, and a plot that kept me furiously reading to find out how everything would tie up in the end. A quote that stuck with me:

"You two girls want to say you got nerve to stand up to people, then you got to prove it.  Ain't no way to change the world for the better if you can't stand up for what's right when everyone else is wrong."

I totally agree with these words and always try to stand up for my beliefs.  I recommend this book and will definitely read the next two in the series (even though they aren't free)!

my read shelf:
Bri's book recommendations, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists (read shelf)

A little bit of everything.

I have had very bad luck so far this week!  One of our cars got towed and we had to pay TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS to get it back.  We were supposed to move our car from it's parking space so they could plow but we totally forgot since it was the first snow of the season and the first time we would have needed it moved since we have lived here.  Horrible!  I am also missing my ipod...and I am absolutely positive it was in the small "ipod pocket" in my purse earlier this week.  I really hope it turns up soon because working out is soooo boring without it.   Oh and one of my favorite earrings is missing as well :(  Not cool.

On the bright side, the clothes I ordered with gift cards from Christmas came today.  New clothes always make everything better in my opinion!  I bought a few sweaters and a pair of jeggings.  Have you heard of jeggings?  They are like skinny jeans but more form fitting and as comfortable as leggings.  Being five feet tall and a bit hippy...I was quite weary of buying a pair.  I feared they would make me look like an oompa loompa, but to my surprise they have officially become my favorite pair of jeans EVER.  This is coming from a girl who constantly struggles to find jeans that are short enough, fit right, and are comfy.  They are super flattering and amazingly comfortable!  They move with me instead of staying all stiff and stay tucked into boots perfectly without bunching up!  Oh and they are high-waisted enough to avoid mooning the whole world but low-rise enough to look hot.  I totally recommend them.  Take my advice-even if you think they will make you feel like a Willy Wonka character and at least try a pair on.  Do it! can thank me later.  

Today also marks day one of my gym commitment with a fellow cheerleader.  We have a set schedule for working out the rest of the week so that we won't back out and can motivate each other to work harder.  I burned 350 calories on the elliptical in a half hour, walked around the track, and did lots of abs.  I'm finally on my way to losing that 10-15 pounds!  Tomorrow after the gym we are getting salads (like good gym buddies!) and watching chick flicks all night.  I'm very excited!  :)

I'm also a proud nanny because Quinn took his FIRST steps to me yesterday!  *tear*  Now that he started, he can't seem to stop.  Today I managed to get him to walk 12 steps to me by bribing him with his favorite toy-my cell phone (by holding it juuust out of reach hehe).  He is growing up waaay too fast. 

I hope everyone has a great week!


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Stuck in The Middle review

I have officially completed my first book of 2011!  It was Stuck in the Middle (Sister to Sister #1) by Virginia Smith and is Christian Chick-Lit so it qualifies for both of my 2011 reading challenges. 
 I got this book for free on my nook so I wasn't sure what to expect from it.  Fortunately, I was pleasantly surprised! 

Stuck in the Middle is about a woman named Joan who lives at home with her mother and grandmother.  Her life isn't really going anywhere and she feels very "stuck" in her current boring routine.  She is  frustrated with the lack of excitement she experiences compared to her two accomplished sisters, until a hot doctor moves in across the street.  She sets a personal goal to grow closer with God and get a date with her new neighbor in attempts to change her life.

I liked this book but I didn't love it.  It was a good story but nothing substantial really happened.  I connected with  the characters but I felt some of the things they said and did were unrealistic for their ages.  For example, 25-year-old women do not typically have to look up flirting tips on the internet.  I didn't really buy parts of it but I still enjoyed reading it and will probably read the next book in the series. 

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!  I spent New Year's Eve working (as usual) but my boss did pay me for an extra hour of work and gave me a nice bottle of champagne, so I can't complain too much.  2010 was a great year!  I got engaged, turned 21, bought a new car, and had a lot of fun.  I wish I had been able to spend more time with my friends and family but I really did work (what seemed like) all the time this past year.  I am ready for 2011 and all that it will bring.  Over the next year I hope to graduate from college, start a new full time teaching job, and move to a new town.  My New Years resolutions are to maintain a healthy lifestyle (by keeping my weight down, spending more time at the gym, and eating healthy), to become better at saying "no" to commitments when I feel I need more "me" time, and to spend more time with my friends.