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Posts Tagged ‘beans’

That’s what my husband said about dinner last night.

I don’t know if I’d go that far, but it was a very tasty, less expensive and extremely easy version of one of our favorite dining-out experiences. Definitely not a replacement, but not too shabby either.

HUGE bonus that we didn’t have to turn on the oven in yesterday’s sudden burst of summer. 93 degrees when I looked at the thermometer around 3pm. Apparently we’ve skipped spring completely and gone straight to summer.

Not Quite Chipotle

~1/4 cup fresh or frozen corn kernels
~1/2 cup fresh tomato, chopped (I used one large Roma.)
~1/4 cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
~1/4 cup chunky salsa
~2 teaspoons fresh cilantro, chopped
~1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced
~sprinkle of chili powder (to your liking)

Dump all the ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl.

Cover with plastic wrap. Cut 2 slits to vent. Microwave on HIGH 1 1/2 minutes or until the mixture is heated through. Stir and serve over rice.

I also added a bit of shredded 2% cheddar cheese and a dollop of sour cream, but I waited until after I took the picture so it didn’t cover everything up.

I’m surprised that my husband so willingly agreed to a meatless meal and was even more shocked that he was so enthusiastic about the result. If you did want to bulk it up a bit (or please a meat lover in your house), I think shredded chicken seasoned with taco seasoning would be a great addition.

Have you ever tried to recreate a favorite restaurant dish? What was it and how did your version turn out?

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Have you ever been so tired that you weren’t even close to hungry when it was your normal time to eat?

That was me yesterday morning. I skipped an AM meal completely because I didn’t sleep well Monday night and was exhausted yesterday morning.

I snapped out of it around 10AM and then became a bottomless pit. First I ate some GenSoy cheddar soy crisps.

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A little later, I had some dry roasted almonds and started chugging water from my new reusable Gaiam water bottle. Notice the lovely flowers brought to me by a coworker from her garden. Totally made my day.

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The lunch I’m about to show you might disgust some and intrigue others. It’s called Corndog Casserole and the recipe came from a friend. It’s basically boxed cornbread mix, sliced-up hot dogs, shredded cheese, milk, plain yogurt and a bit of this and that. It really does taste like a corndog and it’s a bit healthier than its fair-time counterpart. Plenty of mustard on the side for dipping. (Sorry the pic isn’t rotated. Not sure if it’s wordpress or my iPhoto.

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I was a little late to my workout at work because I was, well, actually working. The phone always seems to ring just about the time I’m headed to change clothes. Gotta love tax season! Yesterday’s session focused on back and legs which felt really good.

My afternoon snack was a yummy, under ripened, organic Chiquita. banana!

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Confession: I always try to get the banana with the sticker and it almost always ends up being worn on my forehead. 🙂

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I guess my body was making up for not being hungry in the morning by being extra hungry in the afternoon. My tummy got grumbly right around quittin’ time so I munched on a SoyJoy Pineapple Mango bar-like thing. I discovered these a year or so ago and this one is my favorite flavor. They’re a little higher in sugar than I normally prefer, but very filling.

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It was cold and snowy (in APRIL!!!) and my husband sent me a text message saying it was a perfect night for soup and grilled cheese. He volunteered to do the cooking and I agreed because he’s a much better cheese griller than I am. While he slaved away in the kitchen, I fixed myself a POM+Perrier spritzer (aka “pregnant lady cocktail”) using the POM Wonderful Pomegranate Tangerine juice I picked up at the grocery on sale last weekend.

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It tasted more pomegranatey than tangeriney, but the tangerine part added a yummy kick of extra tartness. It was fizzy, but the glass actually has bubbles molded into the plastic so it looks extra fizzy.

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The chef’s soup of choice was classic Campbell’s Chicken Noodle. I had my grilled cheese on an Arnold’s Multigrain Sandwich Thin. In custard cups, I had small portions of lowfat cottage cheese and baked beans. I ended up not being able to finish my soup. Guess my eyes were bigger than my tummy.

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To make up for my lack of sleep the night before, I headed to bed around 8:30. I was planning to “just relax” there while watching Biggest Loser, but I was out cold just after the reward challenge. I don’t think it was even 9:00! Guess that’s just my body’s way of telling me “YOU NEED SLEEP!”

Are there certain foods you eat or crave more when it’s cold outside? What about when it’s hot?

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It was a crazy weekend and a dead-camera-battery Monday so I’m just getting back into the swing of things. Here’s a quick recap.

Friday: Husband was in an accident on his way to work. Dark+fog+stopped garbage truck=bad news. Everyone was fine save his sore shoulder/back and bruised ego. His company sent him home early from work to rest so I left at lunchtime to meet him at home.

Saturday: Went to the outlet mall near our house with my husband, cousin-in-law and his wife. They’re expecting in July and found some major baby bargains. Despite all of the adorable baby things, I only bought one pair of maternity jeans. I haven’t purchased even a single baby item yet because I know once I start, I won’t stop.

Sunday: Dinner theater with my mom, my friend and her mom. I had every intention of taking pictures, but everything on the buffet was greasy and gross looking. I did eat my body weight in their signature cheese bread! 🙂

Monday: Drive. Work. Drive. Sleep.

Which brings us to yesterday’s eats:

I was craving something really carby for breakfast so I headed to the cafe across the street from my office. I had a toasted blueberry bagel with a little real butter (Are you proud, Erin?) and cream cheese. That’s Twinings English Breakfast tea on the side. Yes, I realize this is not the healthiest breakfast, but man was it good!

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I switched back to healthy mode for my morning snack, a pear. I think it looks a little like a flower when it’s still in the slicer like that. Pretty & delicious!

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It was measurement day for our workout at work group. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but it wasn’t nearly as bad as I though. Since the middle of February, I’ve gained 2″ in my waist, an inch in my thigh and half an inch in my bicep. The place that really shocked me was my hips. I feel like that’s where I’m getting bigger (thanks to baby), but it actually stayed the same. Since I’m in my 2nd trimester now, doctor says I shouldn’t do anything flat on my back, exercise included. There were just 2 ab stations that I had to modify yesterday.

***PRODUCT REVIEW***

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The fabulous Kristin of Stoneyfield Farm was nice enough to send me some Oikos Organic Greek Yogurt samples since I was having trouble finding it in the grocery stores near me. Yesterday I broke out the honey flavor and, lemme tell ya, I was impressed. The texture was really creamy and the flavor was rich. I loved that it was both fat free and organic. The 5.3 oz. containers are the perfect single serving size and contain just 120 calories.

I topped mine with a little Bear Naked Fit granola and a couple dried dates. I didn’t realize that the honey was in the bottom until after the picture so you can’t really tell what it looks like all stirred up.

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My verdict: I’ve never tried 0% Fage (can’t find it at my grocery either), but I liked the Oikos a lot better than that brand’s 2%. There was just the right amount of sweetness from the honey without making it overly sweetened like lots of other popular brands. I stayed full the entire afternoon and through my commute (from about 2PM – 7PM) without needing to eat again which is quite impressive. I’m going to speak with the manager at my usual grocery this weekend to ask them if they’ll pretty please start stocking this ASAP.

After work, I headed to my parents’ house to pick up the pooch. The yummy smell hit me as soon as I walked in the door: soup beans with ham. I know a bunch of you just wrinkled your noses and said “ewww” which is how my husband feels about them. These were a staple in my house growing up and we had them at least once every other week because my mom LOVES them. I hated them until a year or so ago and now I miss having them regularly.

My mom hooked me up with a container to take home since she always makes a huge pot. They came in real handy when I got home. My husband wasn’t at all hungry and I didn’t feel like making anything elaborate. My parents eat them with cornbread. I prefer mine served over brown rice:

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With a lovely, leafy salad:

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Dinner is served!

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Our kitchen table is becoming a catch-all because the mail basket is overflowing so, after I ate, it was time for sorting and filing. I’ve come to the conclusion that I HATE JUNK MAIL. It’s wasteful of natural resources and causes annoying clutter. I know about Catalog Choice to opt out of receiving catalogs, but if anyone knows of a good way to make the other stuff stop I’d greatly appreciate your tips.

Are there any foods that you hated/wouldn’t eat as a kid and now love?

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  • The average American uses 150 gallons of water every day.
  • 1 in 6 people on Earth do not have access to safe drinking water. 😦

How can you help?

  • Drink tap water instead of bottled water. It helps our planet and gives you a really great excuse to buy a cute, reusable bottle. WIN-WIN in my book! 😀
  • Be conscious of the water you use and try to reduce your consumption.
  • Share information about water conservation with your friend.

In honor of this special day, Nubius Organics (LOVE ’em) is offering 20% off all reusable bottles, including those that are already on sale. Just enter promo code WWD20 at checkout. The offer is good through March 23rd, so hurry!

Here’s a recap of my eats from the past two days:

Friday

I woke up STARVING because I didn’t eat much of a dinner last night. Two Kashi waffles with a little butter and lite maple syrup filled me right up. I’d really like to start posting pictures of my first-thing-in-the-morning meals. It’s still dark when I leave the house so I can just never get the lighting right.

I ate the last bit of my strawberries after getting settled in at my desk.

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I ate what was supposed to be my lunch about an hour and a half before workout time. Morningstar Farms Spicy Black Bean Burger, a wedge of Laughing Cow Light Swiss cheese and lettuce all on a La Tortilla Factor EVOO Tomato & Basil Softwrap. Here it is pre-rollup.

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I was trying to decide what to do about being lunchless when my coworkersaid she was calling in an order to the fancy hotel bistro across the street and would pick it up after our workout. Clearly, it was meant to be. 🙂

Our workout at work today had tougher cardio stations than normal and I could feel the burn. My favorite exercise today was the BOSU trainer plank. I was grateful to have food on the way when I returned because I was hungry.

I had the spicy vegetarian rice rolls. All I can say is HOLY WASABI! They came with a veggie blend (tossed in balsamic vinegar) and their homemade chips. I ate everything except the onions from the veggie salad and about 1/2 of the chips. I’m a little worried that these will become an addiction. They were sooooo good.

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I had an afternoon craving for something sweet, but the only thing available in the office was candy. I ran over to the cafe across the street for a chocolate chip oatmeal cookie and ended up with a cup of unsweetened raspberry iced tea, too.

It always feels so good to leave work on a Friday evening. There’s just something so exciting and freeing about knowing you have those 2 days ahead of you for fun. I called a few close friends and family members during my commute to share our baby news. Everyone was thrilled and offered lots of encouragement.

I wasn’t even a little bit hungry for supper. I had toast with butter and jam at some point, but no photo because I was really into the Ohio State vs. Siena basketball game. The outcome didn’t help my bracket any, but man that was a good game! I’m not usually a big fan of basketball on TV, but that’s changed a bit since I’m in the office pool this year. 🙂

Saturday

I slept in a little and was worried that the grocery would be crazy busy since I was going a couple hours later than normal. I ate some Kashi waffles and was out the door.

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The grocery was actually quite peaceful. I had freedom to browse without being crowded or pushed along by the flow of cart traffic. This resulted in some new products which I’ll be reviewing here soon.

After the grocery, I stopped at the bank and then the local coffee shop for a light iced java chip frappe. It’s one of my favorites.
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By the time I’d put groceries away, I was hungry for lunch. I tried something new and made my organic whole wheat couscous in the microwave per the directions from the box. It worked perfectly! Actually, I think it turned out even better than on the stovetop. I added some black beans and Tastefully Simple Mild Red Pepper Salsa.

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I also had VeggiePatch Veggie Nuggets with mustard for dipping.

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After lunch, I headed outside to do some reading for my Nutrition & Wellness Consultant at-home study. That’s where I spent most of the afternoon into early evening. The sunshine felt great! We didn’t have an “official” dinner. I just did a repeat of lunch because it was so yummy and then hung out with my husband until time for bed.

Just FYI, this is where I’m blogging and blog reading today:

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I have some water (in my reusable bottle of course) and fresh iced sun tea for refreshment. Those are clothes drying on the line in the background. That’s one of my favorite parts of warm weather. I love the way they feel and smell. The real perk is that it’s more eco-friendly than the dryer. Plus, it cuts down a LOT on our electric bill.

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*takes deep breath*

That’s the first time I’ve had a chance to do that since my last post. Work is still hectic, but that makes the day go by fast so it’s all good. I’ve been pretty tired in the evenings so it’s been dinner, workout, a little reading and then bed. To make up for my lack of posting this week I have something exciting in store for early next week. It may or may not be my very first giveaway! 😉

Here’s the recap of my eats:

I’m now on a Kashi cereal kick. I had GoLean Crunch Tuesday & again this morning with organic skim milk. No pic since it looked the exact same as Monday.

I’m still digging the Horizon Organic milk boxes and they’ve been an every morning commute treat this week.

TUESDAY

My super sweet coworker knows I love tea and brought me an extra that she picked up at Panera. She forgot what it was so I had to be a bit adventurous. I’m pretty sure it was hibiscus flower or something along that line. I wish I knew because it was good and the perfect cure for my icky morning tummy syndrom. The picture is very unexciting, but I took it anyway.

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There were no leftovers from Monday night’s dinner. Poor planning resulted in the need to bust out another frozen meal. This one is my favorite Lean Cuisine called Sesame Chicken.

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Tuesday means lunchtime workout at work. I’m really enjoying the sessions. Still not an extreme burn, but nice toning exercises mixed with just enough cardio. It’s also nice to get to know some of the other ladies in my building better. I’ve also discovered that I really, really love the Bosu trainer.

I’ll be really sad when the pineapple is gone. It made a perfect post-workout snack. Maybe it will reappear on the grocery list for next week.

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My husband was dressed and ready for the gym when I got home so I changed and we headed out. I did about 30 minutes on the elliptical, bench pressed ten reps at a lightish weight and then stretched while my husband finished his workout.

Dinner was taco salad, a quick and easy favorite in our house. I topped my bed of romaine and green leaf lettuces with seasoned lean ground beef, salsa, reduced fat sour cream and shredded mozzarella cheese. I know, I know. I was going to add jalapeño peppers, but my husband (who loves spicy stuff) put a few on his salad and cried when he took a bite. lol

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WEDNESDAY

I had a large vanilla creme (noninterference from my boss this time) as soon as I got to work. Basically just a latte without the espresso. Slowly but surely I’m quitting the coffee. Today marks one week completely coffee free! Notice I didn’t say caffeine free. I’m still relying heavily on tea. I can’t have herbal teas (doctor’s orders) which really stinks. Herbs aren’t regulated by the FDA and there are just too many questions and conflicting studies about their effects on pregnant women. I know Yogi makes a prenatal tea, but even that got the thumbs down when I asked. My go-to this week has been Lipton Red Rose.

I ran errands Wednesday at lunch and brought back a salad from the grocery salad bar. It was made up of mixed greens, chopped hard-boiled egg, diced tomatoes, chickpeas, jalapeño peppers, cucumbers and two kinds of cheese with Kraft Light Ranch for fork dipping.

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Dinner was a favorite in our household, chicken meatballs! The recipe came from The Biggest Loser Cookbook and they’re actually called Muscling up Meatballs. I usually just eyeball everything except the ground chicken and eggs so they never taste the same twice.

At my bridal shower this time last year we played a game where I had to guess my husband’s responses to questions they’d asked him ahead of time. One of them was “What is his favorite meal that you (meaning I) make?” His answer? Chicken meatballs. 🙂

Our side dishes were Annie’s White Cheddar Mac & Cheese and steamed Italian vegetables.

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Thursday eats weren’t exciting so no pictures. Lunch was a repeat of Wednesday’s dinner. My snacks were Annie’s White Cheddar Bunnies and a banana, both of which you’ve seen before.

It was so cold and windy yesterday! My poor husband worked outside in it all day and had serious trouble getting his body temp regulated once he got home. My cousin called last night to tell me she’s pregnant with baby #3. Her due date is one week ahead of mine. We’re waiting a little longer before we tell anyone except our parents, my sister-in-law and all of you. It was sooo hard not to spill the beans! One month from today I’ll be 12 weeks at statistically out of the woods for any major complications. That’s when we’re planning to share the news with everyone else.

Do you have any fun plans for the weekend?

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I’m afraid that the food portion of my blog may become very, very random. Please don’t try to make sense of it. It’s not rational. According to my doctor, when I’m hungry I should listen to my body and give it what it needs. I’m trying to take that advice and get something in me when I’m hungry while still remaining as health-minded as possible.

Yesterday I forgot my camera (again) which was no huge loss because my eats basically consisted of cheese, more cheese, milk and green beans. Exciting, huh?

Today was a little bit better. I started my day with a peanut butter and blueberry jam (Amish store again) sandwich on a multigrain Arnold’s Sandwich Thin as soon as I got to work.

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A little later I was hungry again so I snacked on Kashi TLC crackers and the last of my Cabot Reduced Fat Cheddar cheese. I was so hungry that I forgot to take a picture before I scarfed it down.

Lunch was another variety of Cedarlane wrap.

*Product Review*
Low Fat Beans, Rice & Cheese Style Burrito.

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This was basically like a burrito with lots of beans, a little rice and some cheese. Very gooey, tasty and filling. It reminded me a lot of the Amy’s burritos I’ve had in the past. I could see bulking this up by topping it with lettuce, salsa, sour cream, olives and other veggies for a hearty dinner. For nutrition information or ingredients list, click here.

The only other thing I ate at work was a sugar-free vanilla pudding cup. My husband wasn’t hungry when I got home which was fine because I really wasn’t either. I did decide to eat something after I changed out of my work clothes and did some laundry. I had a little whole wheat pasta drizzled with extra virgin olive oil and sprinkled with some grated parmesan cheese.

In honor of my completely random menus the last two days, here’s a completely random question of the day:
What’s your favorite color? 😀

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As expected, we were blasted overnight with a pretty nasty ice storm. Here are some pictures I took as soon as the sun came up:

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I went back inside and made called in to work to let them know I wouldn’t be there. Ice is pretty, but not very conducive to driving an hour and a half on mostly back roads. My husband didn’t go to work either, but he slept in. I fixed myself a nice hot bowl of oats with some maple syrup, a little brown sugar and unsweetened coconut. I swear there wasn’t that much syrup. It just looks like it in the picture because it got all hot and oozy.

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I also had half of a delicious grapefruit

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…and some steaming hot coffee in another of my favorite mugs. Little did I know how that quote would come to reflect my day.

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I even broke out a placemat!

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So there I am sitting at the table sipping my coffee and admiring the winter scape when BAM…power goes out. I checked the breaker to make sure it wasn’t just us. Nope. The power company was busy so I used the automated system to report the outage and then broke out the flashlights and candles.

My husband got up a few minutes later. We listened to a Jillian Michaels podcast I had saved on my laptop until the battery died. Then we sat. And sat. And sat. It’s so funny all the things we take for granted that use power. I kept flipping light switches when I went in and out of rooms. I got the vacuum out of the closet and unwound the cord before realizing that it was futile. Finally I just bundled up on the couch and read a book.

Around noon we still didn’t have power or any word about when it would still be on. My coffee had gone cold in the pot and I had no way to reheat it. My husband was starting to get cabin fever. We decided to ride in (all of 2 blocks) to the only gas station in our teeny tiny town. It’s kind of the gathering point so it was packed with people swapping weather and power stories. While we were there we also realized we were hungry and that there wasn’t much at home that didn’t require a heat source. We ordered subs at their little deli counter and I fixed myself a cup of coffee. My sub was a toasted 6″ turkey on wheat with lettuce, tomatoes, black olives, pickles, mustard and just a little bit of mayo.

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I found bags of something called Pogos. I’m not a big fan of most things you’d find in a convenience store “grocery” because of the nutritional information so I was surprised when I read the back of the bag. The nutrition information wasn’t too bad, the ingredient list wasn’t horribly long and there was only 1 thing on the list that wasn’t easily recognized.

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They ended up being just okay. They didn’t have much potato taste and the Jalapeno Cheddar flavoring tasted a bit chalky. I might buy them again, but only in a pinch.

After our “adventure” we went home and ate our lunches. The power came back on as we were cleaning up the table. We flipped on the TV and watched all the weather reports for our area. The joy was short lived. It went back off about an hour later.

I bundled up again and went back to my reading. That’s pretty much all I managed to accomplish until the power came back on permanently about 5 hours later. I reheated some Lemony Shrimp leftovers from yesterday for dinner. I don’t think I’ve ever been so grateful for our microwave. 🙂

We’re skipping the gym tonight because on-street parking is the only option there and they’re asking people not to do that so the plows can do their thang. I’m trying to get caught up on all the things I wanted to do today that require electricity and I’m thinking about an early bedtime. I know this storm was a big one so I hope everyone is staying safe and warm no matter where you are.

What’s the last book you read?

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