Thursday, 28 December 2017

Those New Years Resolutions

I don't make New Years resolutions.  Because nobody keeps them and I believe that if you want to make a change you should just make it, don't wait until January 1 to do it.

But this year there are a few resolutions that I kind of want to make.  So I guess I do make New Years resolutions after all!

1. Be more intentional with my time. I find it so easy to get home and flop down on the couch.  And I love that, and it's going to be hard to change because after a long day it's how I relax.  But then I think about how much more productive I could be if I was just more intentional with my time.  Work out while I'm watching TV or actually fold the pile of laundry instead of letting it sit next to me (this sounds easier than it is).  Blog in the morning or after the kids go to bed.  Or like right now, after I spent 10 minutes aimlessly trying to find a movie to watch on Netflix and then realized that I have two photobooks that need to be made!  So the goal is to find things that I can be more productive with that better our family life as a whole.

2. Get up at 5:30 am.  Ok, I've been trying to do this since I went back to work.  It works about 2 days a week and I aim for 4.  So I want to try harder.  You see if I would get up at 5:30 I could get a 30-45 minute workout in and then I wouldn't have to worry about working out in the evening.  (Which 100% of the time never happens...)

3. Meal plan.  This has just disappeared since I went back to work.  A lot of it is because I barely have time to grocery shop, and if I don't know when I'm grocery shopping it's hard to plan meals.  So maybe Ryan and I have to make more of an effort to figure out what night I will grocery shop and then I can properly plan my meals.  I also received Shay Shull's Slow Cooker recipe book for Christmas.

Some other goals is to drink more water, go to yoga more and try to get back into reading on a more regular basis!  Since going back to work these things have all kind of disappeared, but they are important!

Sunday, 24 December 2017

Here Comes Santa Claus...Right Down the Santa Train

Christmas Eve seems as good a time as any to finally post about our trip on the Santa Train.  The Santa Train is a local train that you ride on and there is someone singing carols and then Santa comes to visit.  It's fun for the kids and kind of makes an even out of seeing Santa.  

The first half of the trip we had a man singing carols and playing the guitar and another man playing the saxophone.  The Santa comes onto your train car and everyone takes a turn to go down and see him.  Santa was so nice and friendly.  He gave the boys a train whistle.  Parker asked for a flashlight for himself and a flashlight for Cooper. (He's been pretty consistent all season that all he wants is a flashlight, Santa has a pretty easy job this year.)

Thursday, 21 December 2017

Why Doterra?

I guess I promised a post on why I choose to use Doterra oils, so here we go!

Oils are confusing.  I get it.  They are everywhere now.  They are in the mall, at Walmart, at random stores.  So how do you know which ones to use?  And why would I choose to go with an MLM company to purchase my oils when I can just go to the mall to grab them?

First of all, for me Quality is a huge issue.  When I am putting oils on my skin, or on my children or even taking internally, I want to know that I can trust the oil.  I know that Doterra has quality oils.  Do they cost more?  Maybe.  But oils are kind of serious business, they are fairly strong and so I really want to trust what I'm using.

Support is another huge consideration for me.  Because Google is confusing, I like to have as much info available as possible.  When you go to a store and buy an oil, there are so many things that you don't know.  Some oils are hot oils and shouldn't be put right on your skin or ingested.  Some are phototoxic, so if you put it on your skin and go into the sun, you will burn.  I like to know that I'm using my oils as safely as possible.  And I also like to know all the ways you can use an oil! 

When you sign up with Doterra, you get support from the team that you sign up as a part of.  So I have access to a members only website and facebook group, plus a connection with my upline leader, so I can talk to her if I need to.  And she knows everything there is to know about oil usage! 

Like anything, you need to look at what is important to you and decide which brand is best.  Anyone who knows me knows that I don't really spend money frivolously.  But I will spend a bit more on quality oils that I can trust.  (However, I don't think that Doterra is overpriced comparatively to other oils, besides maybe the oils that you would find at Walmart, that I really wouldn't recommend buying...) But overall, I think oils are also saving me money.  I've been cleaning with oils for a few years and a bottle of lemon oil costs like $12 and still lasts a long time.  If you look at all of the products you can replace with oils, you can really save a ton of money.  I also love to make my own roller blends because it's so much more economical then buying them premixed!  Roller blends make your oils easy to use because they are prediluted, safe for kids and make your bottle of oil go even further.

Whatever you choose to use, I feel like oils are the way of the future.  They are a way to make our family healthier, save costs and grab for a more natural remedy as a first choice. 

Monday, 11 December 2017

My Oily Usage

Today I wanted to share the ways that I have used essential oils in the past couple weeks. Using oils is a bit of a lifestyle change.  It's easy to get your oils and then leave them sitting on a shelf.  You really have to find ways to implement them into your life that's easy.  Once they become a habit, they become the first thing you reach for when you need to solve a problem!

So here are some of the really simple ways that I have used my oils lately:

  • Lemon oil to clean my tub
  • Lemon and On Guard spray to clean off pukey car seat straps (the joys of having children)
  • Congestion roller on my sick kiddos
  • On Guard Immunity roller to try to keep me healthy when I started to feel run down and sick
  • Oregano on plantar's warts (gross I know, but nothing else has worked, although I do have to be cautious with Oregano so I'm taking a bit of a break from this)
  • Lavender roller to help Parker sleep
  • Lavender spray in the boys rooms
  • Diffused Tea Tree and On Guard to kill germs from our household flu bug
  • Lavender oil on dryer balls to freshen our laundry
  • Easy Air (Breathe) in the tub - this would be great if you were congested, I wasn't, but it still smelled amazing!
  • Lavender and Easy Air diffused at bed time to help us sleep (and help Ryan's cold)
  • Tea Tree in my shampoo for eczema 
  • Deep Blue on my thighs after a tough leg workout (not actually a tough workout, but apparently I'm out of shape!)
  • Diffuse lavender and copaiba when feeling slightly stressed and overwhelmed
  • Digestion roller on my tummy for instant relief of tummy trouble
  • Homemade headache roller that had peppermint, frankincense and lavender in it to combat a headache
Let me know if you want any more info on oils and I will help you if I can!  I know that a lot of people are at a point where they are looking at some more natural options to use in their lives and in their homes.  If you are interested in Doterra oils and their benefits, I would love to point you in the right direction.  I'm also going to do a post on why I've chosen Doterra, so stay tuned!

Friday, 8 December 2017

My Essential Journey

You may recall (but probably not), that I started trying out essential oils a couple years ago.  For the past few years, I have dabbled in oils and used them here and there.  However my biggest hesitation for myself was that I was basically either pregnant or breastfeeding.  Oils are fairly potent and so it's super important that you don't use oils that aren't recommended while pregnant or breastfeeding, or that you don't use oils on kiddos that aren't safe for them.  (Being pregnant or breastfeeding actually isn't a reason not to use oils, you just have to know what oils you can and can't use!) 

I used some oils here and there, but it wasn't until I was having stomach issues a few months ago and had a wedding to go to.  I tried out a digestion roller on my tummy and the relief I felt was instantaneous.  After hours of stomach pain and discomfort, it literally disappeared seconds within applying the roller.  And that was my ah-ha moment!

So now that I have no children, born or unborn, who are affected by my body, I am able to really use oils for whatever purposes needed!  I've recently joined on with an amazing group through Doterra oils and I'm really excited about it!  

I'm going to have a few posts on my latest oily uses and I hope that if nothing else they can help you out a bit or open your eyes to all that oils have to offer!

I first started using oils because after having Parker I just didn't feel comfortable with the chemicals that were in our house.  I started using oils to clean the house with and have loved that!  I now combine my oils with Norwex products and feel really good about the lack of chemical cleaning products in our house.  I don't have to worry about the yucky stuff that the kids are sitting on in the tub, or the floor cleaner that's on my floors that they are crawling around on.

But there are so many more benefits to oils than just cleaning products!  They can provide physical support and emotional support.  They can make your house smell great and kill germs.  

I hope you will follow along my next few posts to learn a bit more!

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

Christmas Expectations

I just read something that was sent out by my church that said that if we have low expectations of Christmas, we can't be disappointed.  Disappointment only comes when something doesn't meet our expectations, so by lowering the expectations, you lower your chance of disappointment.  While I agree that this is true (and have seen people be disappointed when their expectations are too high), I don't like this theory.

If we had no expectations for Christmas, would we even be excited about it?  There would be no anticipation for this season!

I think we need to adjust our expectations, especially when we have young children.  I have the expectation that Christmas will be great, but it may not be perfect.  We might not get the perfect family photo, the kids may not behave perfectly, there might be crying at some point in the day.  Nap time is sure to be messed up, which might result in cranky kids.  But we will make memories.  At some point in the day we will all be happy, we will enjoy opening gifts and watching others open gifts.  We will eat delicious food and spend time with family. 

So my expectations are high, but we aren't aiming for perfection here, we are just aiming for some Christmas memories.

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

November Book Reviews may or may not of noticed that there wasn't a book review for October.  Unfortunately I read no books in October, but it wasn't for lack of trying!  I spent 3 weeks trying to read Seeing Red by Sandra Brown.  Usually I like Sandra Brown, and this was her newest and the librarian talked me into borrowing it because it had just come back in.  I could not get into it!  Now it has decent reviews on Goodreads, so maybe I'm the only one who felt this way.  But I just found that it went on and on about nothing for too long.  And I HATED the way the man talked to the woman in it.  I found him crude and vulgar and yet she was interested in him.  It sounded like the book was written by a man because I couldn't imagine a woman actually writing those parts.  So anyways, this was one of the first books in a very long time that I didn't finish!

Luckily November has been better.  I'm back to work so I don't have as much time to read, but I'm often reading on my lunch since I have an hour.  So we just have a couple of reviews this month, and here they are.

The Rumour by Elin Hilderbrand

I knew that this was a good choice after the Sandra Brown fail because although I don't find Elin Hilderbrand's books hugely thrilling, and they are somewhat predictable, they are a nice light read.  It's easy to get into them and enjoy them. 

This book is about a couple of friends in Nantucket.  There is one who is having an affair with her gardener, one who is writing a book about it, and then all of the rumours that are going on about both of them an their husbands because Nantucket is a small place, and that's what happens.


The Lying Game by Ruth Ware

I loved this book.  How much I love a book is just based on the feeling I get.  I couldn't put this one down but I also didn't want it to end.  I liked it much more than The Woman in Cabin 10, which was Ruth Ware's last book.  I'm also definitely looking forward to reading her other novel "In a Dark Dark Wood" now.  

This book is about 4 girls who were friends in high school.  While there, they had a "lying game" where the goal was to tell the biggest lies and make people believe them basically.  Of course something terrible happened as well and now 15 years later it is coming back to haunt them.  I liked that this book was about girlfriends, it made it different than so many other books.  I found it interesting the differences between the girls, the length of time that had passed and yet they could still pick up where they left off.  There were some plot holes as we got further in, which kind of bugs me.  I think that's what bugged me most about The Woman in Cabin 10 as well.  But overall this has been one of my favourite books in awhile!

Maybe in Another Life
Maybe in Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
This is a super late addition (like I'm adding it on December 21 and originally posted this at the beginning of the month).  I'm not really sure how I missed this book!

This book is based on the idea that every time we make a decision, the two decisions create a new life line and our lives run in parallel in two separate dimensions...if that makes sense.  I know there's a more eloquent way to state that, but I can't figure out how right now.  So this book is based on Hannah's life and two very different ways it could of gone based solely on the a decision she makes one night.  I did like the book, I found it interesting that I wasn't cheering for one story line more than the other, I liked them both.  But I'm not sure I buy into this idea that we have parallel lives. 

The book was a good read, like all of the other Taylor Jenkins Reid books I've read have been, but it wasn't one of my favourites.

Monday, 4 December 2017

Moms Make the Magic

I love Christmas.  I love the day, I love the season.  It's magical.  But that magic has really changed since I became a mom.

When you are a kid, Christmas just happens.  You get to enjoy every second of it, stress free.  All these presents just appear, a meal is put on the table in front of you.  You come down on Christmas morning and the tree is pure magic.  As a mom though, it's now my responsibility to make that happen.  

I have been shopping for months.  December is full of all my usual responsibilities, plus extra parties, decorating the house, visits to Santa, cooking extra special meals, parades, wrapping presents, making sure that everyone on your list has a gift.  (It's not just Santa who makes his list and checks it twice.)  Moms have to make all of this happen, and it's a lot of pressure.  But I gladly do it, because I want Christmas to be a magical time for my kids, just like it was for me.  

Christmas is the one occasion that I think that all of the extra stress and pressure is worth it.  I love all of the traditions, even if it means that every weekend is packed from mid November until the end of December.  

So here's to all of the moms out there who are making Christmas magical for their entire families.  And here's to a relaxing January, with maybe a spa day thrown in there somewhere...

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Cooper at 1 Year

So pictures this month were interesting.  It didn't help that because I'm back to work, I couldn't choose the best time of day.  We took them after dinner, and Cooper was getting a bit nuts.  (Before dinner he wasn't having it at all.)  But he's happy!  He just didn't want to sit still and wanted to hug his fox the whole time!

Weight: 22lbs 8 oz

Height: 30 inches

Sleeping: What a difference a month makes.  And my inability to nurse him...  Because I was going back to work, I weaned Cooper.  I also was leaving him for a weekend 3 days after I went back to work, and was hopeful that he would get used to not nursing himself back to sleep.  It worked!  Because I wasn't around to feed him, he had to go back to sleep on his own.  Overall he has been sleeping really well ever since.  He sometimes wakes in the night, but most of the time can go back to sleep on his own.

He naps twice a day, in the morning for less than an hour and in the afternoon for a couple hours.

Eating: As I said, no more nursing!  He's drinking milk from a cup now and eating like a regular boy.  He will eat anything that we put in front of him and doesn't ever seem to get full!  When he wakes up in the morning he's pretty cranky if I don't feed him immediately, which is the total opposite of Parker who wants nothing to do with food for at least an hour.

Favourite's hard to pick a favourite with Cooper.  He likes grapes and bananas, pasta, meatballs.  Those are some of the things he gobbles right up.  But I'm not sure I've found anything that he refuses to eat.

-climbing stairs
-first night away from mommy
-started daycare

-playing in Parker's room
-wrestling with his brother
-toys with wheels
-the bath

-not a huge fan of dogs
-not getting food fast enough

He has adapted so well this month to his new routines.  The first few days he was very sucky when I picked him up from daycare, but he had been totally fine all day without me.  But now he's completely back to his regular self.  He never cries when I drop him off.  I think it definitely helps that Parker stays with him.

Monday, 6 November 2017

A One Year Old

And poof, he's one.

This kids growing up thing is something that I'm still not used to.  It's crazy how much they change.  They go from this little teeny tiny baby, to this big boy who loves to eat and crawl and climb on top of his brother whenever he gets a chance.  And it all happens in a year!

Right after I had Cooper, I couldn't imagine going through birth again.  It hurt.  But I knew I would forget, and I have.  I also couldn't imagine going through pregnancy again.  But everything that you have to go through, makes this time so worth it.  I want all the babies if I'm able to watch them grow, because it's really so much fun.

I was so relieved when I went into labour with Cooper at just over 36 weeks.  That's something that not many people say!  But I was ready to meet this guy.  I was ready for him to make our family just a bit more complete.  

And brothers!  Oh boy, it's been fun.  I was unsure of what life would be like with two boys.  And it is a bit crazier than I had pictured my life.  And I think it will be a bit more expensive than I had hope, because Cooper eats everything in site, and Parker makes me open everything and then says "I don't like that."  But I love watching them together, and I love that they have each other.
Cooper has been such a joyful, easy going baby.  I hope he has those qualities for the rest of his life.  I hope he grows into a kind, hardworking, generous person.

We have done a lot this year.  Life has been crazy busy.  But that's the way we've wanted it to a point.  We have these kids, who want to see the world that they live in.  So I love to take them places, watch them as they see something for the first time.  Parker has also grown up this year and understands so much more, and so I know exactly what I have to look forward to with Cooper.  But if he could stay a baby for a bit longer that would be fine by me.

Ok enough of my rambling.  All of this is just to say, Happy Birthday Coop!  We love you more than you will every know (until you have babies of your own).  

Friday, 13 October 2017

At the Grocery Store

A calming picture...because I need it

We've all been there.  At the grocery store when a kid is having a melt down.  If the mom yells, she's a terrible mother.  If the mom ignores, she's a terrible mother.  If she bribes her kid with chocolate, she's a terrible mother.  Then we have kids and realize that she can't choose the right way to react, because there is no right way.

I was that mom today at the grocery store with the kid who cried the entire time.  Unfortunately it was my almost 3 year old and not the baby as one would maybe expect.  I calmy tried to tell him that nobody wanted to listen to him cry, I begged with him to please stop.  I took the chocolate bar away from him in the checkout line, which resulted in more tears and extra embarrassment for me.  But it probably would of looked worse to give my crying kid a box of smarties, right?

I don't even know.  It was awful and I hope it never happens again.  Maybe it happened so that I wouldn't be so sad about going back to work in five days.  What's the right way to respond to this though?  I guess you just hope that the people around you in the store that day realize that you're trying your best and that when a three year old decides to have a tantrum there's not a whole lot you can do.  Except feed him, because he was starving, because he refused to eat his breakfast before we left the house....

So anyways, if you were in the grocery store today with my family, I'm sorry.  And if you were at Wal-mart today, be thankful that I decided it wasn't worth the stop and just went home.  You're welcome.

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Things I'm Thinking Right Now

1.  I hate making dinner and I hate cleaning up from dinner. The only part of dinner I like is the eating of dinner.

2. I can't believe I only have 3 maternity leave days left.  I picked Parker up from preschool for probably the last time this year today.  I'm hoping something crazy happens and I don't have to go to work.  Can you win the lottery if you don't buy a ticket???

3. And yet I want Parker to go to bed now just so that I don't have to listen to him ask if he can watch Paw Patrol for just a minute.

4. I went to a store today to check out a sweater I wanted to ask for for Christmas.  They only had one left and she said they wouldn't get more in.  So Merry Christmas to me! 

5. What should I do tomorrow on my third last day off with the kids that's fun?  Besides groceries.  Because that's not really fun at all.

What we did for fun yesterday

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Field Trip with My Big Boy

Parker had his first every field trip last Tuesday!  We went to the apple farm with his preschool.  I had been trying to think of something I could do just with Parker, and while I had originally planned on taking Cooper as well, I realized that this would be the perfect opportunity to spend some one on one time with my big boy!

It would of been closer for us to drive ourselves, but the bus was half the fun!  Parker talks about school buses all the time, so getting to ride on one was a lot of fun for him.

While there, we went on a wagon ride, picked some apples, played in a sandbox, saw some cows, and of course ate a few apples.  

I think we both had a good time.  It was nice to be able to fully focus on Parker.  The funny thing is, I'm not really sure he cared much that it was just him.  He was actually very confused in the morning and when I told him we were going on a field trip he kept saying "baby come too".  When we left him at my mom's, he looked at Cooper's car seat and said "where baby?"  I'm sure it was nice for him to have some time without Cooper, but I also like that he seems to miss him when he's not around.  

Saturday, 7 October 2017

Outtakes from our Eleven Month Pictures

Our little photoshoot sure was interesting this month.  I couldn't even get one picture of him laying down on the backdrop that I've used every month because the little stinker sat up and crawled away by the time I stood up, every single time.  

But, I still love all of these crazy pictures of him moving around, because that's what he's like now.  He doesn't sit still.  He loves toys, so sitting still next to blocks and a stuffed animal is just never going to happen!

What happens if I push this block over the edge?

It's gone!

 I brought Parker in to try to get a nice picture of the two of them together.  I should of known better.  Parker brought his apple.  Look at Cooper looking at it.  You can't keep food away from this one.

I told Parker to hug his brother.  Unfortunately he still has the apple.

So he hugs his brother, while holding the apple as far away as possible.

Friday, 6 October 2017

Cooper at 11 Months

Big mama tears over here.  One month away from being a year old.  It amazes me how they change in a year.  How everything changes in a year.  I was thinking the other day about how when I had Cooper, how hard it was to go anywhere.  Parker was little and barely listening and so whenever possibly I did errands without him.  I still choose to do errands without him when I can (haha!), but if he's with me, I can set him down and get Cooper out of the car.  He can walk by himself into a store.  It's just totally different.  Both of them can sit up in a cart and I actually have room for my groceries.  Cooper doesn't eat constantly so I can go out and rarely even have to feed him.  And if he does get hungry, he eats for about five minutes.

Cooper has been an easy baby all around, and having him was much easier than when I had Parker.  But everything now just seems so much easier too.  And I think that's what I have to remember during the tricky times (and Ryan has to remember...), that they are in a difficult stage, where they need a ton of energy from us.  They need us constantly, but soon enough they won't need us for everything anymore.  They will get their own food and milk, they will get themselves dressed and pee on the potty.  And it's ok for us to not love every minute during this time, but someday we will miss those little voices asking us for more milk please, and crawling into our laps for cuddles.  And those days are going to come sooner than we think, and sooner than they should.

Ok anyways, this is really supposed to be about Cooper and what he's like at 11 months, not about all of my emotional mama issues!

Weight: I have no idea. I meant to weigh the heavy lug the other day and I forgot.  But he's heavy!

Height: In comparison to Parker a year ago, he's tall.  

Diapers: Size 4

Clothes: Still kind of fits in some 6-12 months, but 12 months fits better.  

Sleep:  We are working on it, slowly but surely.  He's getting better at going back to sleep by himself sometimes.  He's still nursing a couple times a night.  It really needs to stop...

Naps are pretty good.  He sleeps for about an hour in the morning and a couple hours in the afternoon.  He is still generally going to bed between 9 and 10...I really want to get that earlier for when I'm back at work!

Eating: Oh boy, does this boy love to eat! What a different eater he is than his brother.  You can put anything in front of him and he just sits there and eats away.  He's also getting better with his cup with a straw and the 360 cup and he seems to like the milk!  He eats 3 meals a day and then sometimes some snacks as well.

He nurses only a few times a day, generally not for too long unless he's nursing himself to sleep for a nap.  He maybe nurses 4 times a day in general (plus night feeds).  Considering I go back to work in less than 2 weeks though we need to start decreasing it more.  But I'm not ready to be done!  I was so ready with Parker, because I always had to force him to eat.  With Cooper, it has been so easy that I don't feel like I'm desperate for my body back.  Although I know once I have it, it will probably be nice.

Milestones & likes:
Hmm what's new.  He motors around everywhere.  He pulls himself up onto tables, he hasn't done it onto his feet a ton of times, but he is constantly pulling himself up just enough to grab stuff.  He likes to clear off shelves if he can reach.  Loves getting into the garbage cans.

His favourite spot is Parker's room, I always find him in there playing.  He likes to crawl into our laps, and climb on me if I'm on the floor or working out.  He loves loves loves his brother and still thinks he's hilarious.  He has a monster grin that I absolutely love.  He loves to splash in the tub, the bathroom gets pretty soaked!  Parker yells at him and says "no splashing!" Like as if he's a rule follower...

I don't even have anything to put here with this easy going kiddo.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Being Home

So obviously I've been reflecting on what it's been like to be at home with my kids a lot lately.  I go back to work sooner, slightly earlier than expected.  It's bittersweet.  I do like working.  I'm one of those office people who loves sitting at a computer and being productive and getting stuff done.  But I really love being at home with my kids.

The past 11 months has been amazing.  I enjoyed my maternity leave with Parker, but this maternity leave was so rewarding.  It made such a difference having a toddler who cared what we did.  There were so many fun things that we could go do and it was a blast seeing everything through his eyes.  I loved watching the two boys learn and grow and love each other.

I love leisurely mornings, drinking coffee and watching tv.  I love dropping Parker off at preschool and then picking him up an listening to what he says they did that morning.  Sometimes he sings me the songs that they sang at preschool on the way home.  I love getting together with girlfriends and building relationships with people who are in a similar life stage to myself, as well as watching our kids build relationships with each other.  

People who have the ability to stay home with their kids, I envy you.  It's definitely not easy.  Some days I wanted to pull my hair out.  Many moments have been difficult.  But it's nice to not miss all of those good moments that happen throughout the day.  

But back to work I go.  And I know that it will be fine, because it was fine last time.  Our days will be busy, but we will make it work.  My time management will improve again!  And I know the boys will have a fantastic time at daycare and with their grandmas!

So basically I'm conflicted and don't know how I feel.  I feel everything.  Happy and sad, excited and scared.  But I know that in the end everything will work out, we will all be fine, we will all be happy.  

Thursday, 28 September 2017

My September Books

Once again I'm going to tell you all of these books are good.  Because when it comes down to it, if I get through a book then I generally liked it.  If I don't like it I just can't make myself keep reading it.  But also, if a book is only sub par and you get to the end, usually the ending makes it worth it.
One True Loves
One True Loves by Taylor Jenkins Reid

This is my second Taylor Jenkins Reid book, and once again I really liked it.  The new genre of chick lit seems to have the requirement that your husband died.  I've read about four books now where this weird.  

Emma married her high school sweetheart, Jesse.  Then on their first anniversary Jesse dies in a helicopter crash.  It goes through her 2 year grief process very briefly until she finally decides she is ready to move on.  She reconnects with a high school friend, Sam and they get engaged.  Then she finds out that Jesse is actually alive.  

The book is kind of heartbreaking, because you feel for Emma in that she loves them both.  When your husband dies, you don't stop loving him.  But she has fallen in love with Sam as well.  

Despite the fact that husbands keep dying in my books, I really like this type of Chick Lit that has a bit more depth, not quite so Hallmark movie, but still an easy read.

The Silent Sister (Riley MacPherson, #1)
The Silent Sister by Diane Chamberlain

Riley believes that her older sister committed suicide as a teenager.  When Riley's father dies and she is cleaning out his house, she finds that not all she believed is quite true.  This book goes through the discoveries that Riley makes about her family.

Although there is a murder in this book, the entire mystery aspect of the book isn't about a murder, which is a bit refreshing!  I wouldn't say it's the best book that I've read, but it kept me interested and I did enjoy it.

The Breakdown

The Break Down by B.A. Paris

So this is the second B.A. Paris book that I've read, the first being Behind Closed Doors.  I had similar feelings about this book.  I did enjoy it, but I felt that not everything made sense and there were some plot holes.

Cass drives a short cut through the woods during a storm and sees a car sitting there.  She thinks about helping, but feels it would be unsafe for her.  The next day she finds out a woman has been murdered in the woods.  From then on she starts to get strange phone calls where nobody is there and starts forgetting everything and is sure she has early onset dementia like her mother did.

The thing that annoyed me the most is that this short cut through the woods was perceived as so dangerous, when it was 5 minutes from her nice house.  I couldn't think of a single road where I lived that my husband would tell me not to drive down because it's unsafe, so I thought that was strange.

The book is a bit repetitive with Cass freaking out about the murder and the phone calls and thinking she's going crazy.  But like all mystery books it comes together in the end.  


Good As Gone by Amy Gentry

Julie is kidnapped when she is 13.  8 years later she shows up on her parents front door.  It's a miracle, but suddenly her mom is questioning things.  Certain aspects don't add up.  Is this really her daughter?

This was a good suspense novel.  I liked that the family, although they had their issues which resulted from the kidnapping, was relatively normal.  I find that often in books like this, the family is completely insane and unrelatable. (Like every Gillian Flynn novel.)  This book kept me guessing, although I kind of started to figure everything out about 3/4 of the way through.  It wasn't brilliant, but it was good.

On Second Thought

On Second Thought by Kristan Higgins

I'm definitely a Kristan Higgans fan.  I loved this book.  It's about two sisters, one who is recently a widow and one whose boyfriend of 11 years just broke up with her.  Both of them are dealing with very different losses.  They haven't always been the closest, but this brings them together.  It's intertwined with aspects of love stories, but a lot of it is about their connection and friendship as well, which is definitely refreshing.  I found the characters super likeable and enjoyable to read about.  This is my favourite book of the month!

I'm on a bit of a reading downturn right now.  I just haven't been able to get into anything new since I finished Good as Gone last week.  But I guess I've been reading pretty heavily for the past few months, so maybe that's ok!  Hopefully it picks up again soon, because I'm actually really enjoying reading so many great stories this year!