Sunday, August 28, 2016

#FitReaders: Weekly Check-in August 26

 
 
It was a crazy week, starting with my Fitbit acting up. It just stopped syncing suddenly and was quite frustrating trying to figure out how to fix it. After contacting Fitbit Support via twitter, I learned how to reset my Alta and that seemed to do the trick. Luckily I still have my Fitbit One so I used that while I was trying to figure things out with the Alta. 

I also  had my bi-annual skin check at the dermatologist and had a spot removed from the back of my leg. They must have hit a nerve where they injected the Novocaine because it really ended up bothering me all week - more so than usual. Since the whole area was/still is a bit swollen, it starts to hurt/throb a bit after too much sustained activity. It's a lot better today (6 days later) than it was, but not 100% yet...so until it is, I'll be taking it easy...and praying that the lab report comes back negative - I definitely don't want them digging around that area again ;)  


My August Goals:
* Because I will be starting my training schedule for the big walk in September, I am using August as a "rest month."

  • 10K steps M-F, at least 7,500 steps on the weekend - So-so on weekend, nailed it during the week :)
  • 30 minutes of active walking every day, M-F - 5/5
  • Eat mindfully - This was a better week, though I'm still looking into a tracking app that will work for me.

   
Here's how my week went:     
Aug 20:  5,993 steps
Aug 21:  8,538 steps
Aug 22:  10,006 steps
(30 min fitness walk)
Aug 23:  10,756 steps (30 min fitness walk)

Aug 24:  11,082 steps (30 min fitness walk)

Aug 25:  11
,211 steps (30 min fitness walk)
Aug 26: 
12,597 steps (30 min fitness walk)
Total Steps: 70,183 steps
 
 
Audiobooks listened to this week: 
  • Started and Finished Black Rabbit Hall  by Eve Chase, narrated by Nathalie Buscombe, Katie Scarfe, & Cassandra Campbell

How did your week go? You can find this week's link-up here.



***In March of 2017, I'll be doing the CHALLENGE WALK MS in Savannah, GA. It is a three-day, 50-mile walk that tests your strength and your spirit, and makes an extraordinary difference in the lives of people with MS and their families.

To help me reach my fundraising goal, click here :)

 
Virtual 5K /10K Tally:
     January:                               May:
           5K  -  3                                  5K  -  9
         10K  -  0                                10K  -  2
     February:                             June:

           5K  -  4                                  5K  -  5
         10K  -  1                                 10K  -  5                  
     March:                                  July:
           5K  -  4                                  5K  -  3
         10K  -  1                                 10K  -  1
     April:                                    August:
           5K  -  4                                  5K  -  6
         10K  -  5                                 10K  -  1


 

Friday, August 26, 2016

#SRC2016 Book Spotlight: The Lucidity Project by Abbey Campbell Cook



Title: The Lucidity Project
Author: Abbey Campbell Cook
Published: May 2016, She Writes Press
Format: Paperback, 288 pages

After suffering from depression all her life, twenty-five-year-old Max Dorigan joins a mysterious research project on a Carribean island, where she's introduced to the magical and healing world of lucid dreaming.

Depression has haunted twenty-five-year-old Max Dorigan her entire life. After years of unsuccessful treatment and a failed suicide attempt, Max agrees to join "The Lucidity Project," a program at a mysterious health and wellness resort in the Caribbean - where, she soon finds, the people are just as troubled as she is, only in a different way. They claim to have psychic powers. They claim they can see ghosts. They claim Max is one of them.

Max refuses to pay much attention until Dr. Micah McMoneagle, the charismatic head of the project, reveals he's found a way to allow people to enter each other's dreams. Now, instead of discussing their issues in talk therapy, Max and her new gifted friends can symbocally work through their problems on the astral plane. Together they embark on a magical, tranformational journey through dreamtime to reveal the causes of the things that are holding them back - an adventure that ultimately awakens them to who they really are, and what they came to earth to do.

 

The Lucidity Project  by Abbey Campbell Cook is one of  BookSparks "Summer Reads" reading selection picks.

Follow the #SRC2016, #BestSRCEver and #BestSummerEver hashtags on twitter to read reviews on this book as well as reviews on the other summer books! 

 

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Review: The Cavendon Luck by Barbara Taylor Bradford (audio)

Title: The Cavendon Luck
Author: Barbara Taylor Bradford
Series: Cavendon Hall, #3
Narrator: Anna Bentinck
Published: June 2016, Macmillan Audio / St. Martin's Press
Length: 16 hours 11 minutes / Hardcover, 512 pages
Source: Personal copy via Audible / Publicist

From the #1 New York Times bestselling author comes a captivating epic saga of courage and honor, following the aristocratic Inghams and the loyal Swann family who have served them for centuries.

It is 1938 in England, and Miles and Cecily Ingham have lead the family in bringing the Cavendon estate back from the brink of disaster. But now, with the arrival of World War II, Cavendon Hall will face its biggest challenge yet. It is a challenge that will push the Inghams and Swanns to protect each other and the villagers, and reveal their true capacity for survival and rebirth.

Told with Bradford’s deft, evocative prose and featuring a beloved cast of characters, The Cavendon Luck is a story of intrigue, romance, sorrow, and joy that readers won’t soon forget.

My thoughts: This is the final book in Barbara Taylor Bradford's Cavendon Hall trilogy and I'm so bummed to have come to the end of this series...I really enjoyed it and getting to know the latest families and world that Barbara Taylor Bradford has created for us. While Emma Hart and The Woman of Substance Saga will forever remain as my favorite BTB series, this one wasn't too bad...and having Emma Hart make a cameo - I loved it!!!

This latest installment picks up ten years after the prior book, just before the start of WWII. The family has brought Cavendon Hall back from the brink of collapse and now must weather the impending war. We see the impact that the war has on both families, the Inghams and the Swanns, and see that that class line that was once so distinct between the two families has slowly started to fade away.

I loved seeing the different roles that each character played during the war. Cecily and her shop and factories are at the ready for whatever clothing needs might be needed throughout the war. They have adjusted to the demands already, going from fashionable couture to ready-made clothing. Dierdre, one of the Dee's, is back at work at the war office, working at covert operations. I loved seeing her in the role as "spy" and her interactions with her operatives were at times humorous, with all their nicknames, but had that serious tone to it. 

This book, as with the other two, had its share of happiness, sadness, weddings and death. It was set during a tumultuous time in our history and the seriousness of that really comes across. We see the direct impact that the war has had on our characters and how they learn to deal with it in their everyday lives and in the aftermath. 

This series was a good series, a great family saga with fun characters that you just wanted more of. My only complaint would be that it would have been nice to have had a family tree included in the books to help keep track of who everyone was - it was hard to remember, especially in the beginning, who was who. What I did love, though, was the inclusion of some beloved characters from Barbara Taylor Bradford's previous books - especially Emma Hart and Blackie O'Neil...so much so, that I am seriously considering rereading the Woman of Substance saga again!!!


Audio thoughts: I so enjoyed Anna Bentinck's narrations of this series...I thought she did a great job with the voices throughout the three books, staying pretty consistent from book to book, as far as I could tell. Her pacing and tone were good and she infused just the right amount of humor and seriousness when needed. I will definitely be checking out what else she has narrated!


Books in this series:  
  1. Cavendon Hall
  2. The Cavendon Women
  3. The Cavendon Luck
 

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Book Spotlight & Giveaway: Liar's Key by Carla Neggers

Title: Liar's Key
Author: Carla Neggers
Series: Sharpe & Donovan, #6
Published: August 2016, MIRA
Format: Hardcover, 384 pages

An FBI legend, a mysterious antiquities specialist and a brazen art thief draw top FBI agents Emma Sharpe and Colin Donovan into a complex web of blackmail, greed and murder in the eagerly awaited new novel in the highly acclaimed Sharpe & Donovan series

Emma Sharpe is suspicious when retired Special Agent Gordon Wheelock, a legend in FBI art crimes, drops by her Boston office for a visit. Gordy says he's heard rumors about stolen ancient mosaics. Emma, an art crimes specialist herself, won't discuss the rumors. Especially since they involve Oliver York, an unrepentant English art thief. Gordy and Emma's grandfather, a renowned private art detective, chased Oliver for a decade. Gordy knows Wendell Sharpe didn't give him everything he had on the thief. Even now, Oliver will never be prosecuted.

When a shocking death occurs, Emma is drawn into the investigation. The evidence points to a deadly conspiracy between Wendell and Oliver, and Emma's fiancé, deep cover agent Colin Donovan, knows he can't stay out of this one. He also knows there will be questions about Emma's role and where her loyalties lie.

From Boston to Maine to Ireland, Emma and Colin track a dangerous killer as the lives of their family and friends are at stake. With the help of their friend, Irish priest Finian Bracken, and Emma's brother, Lucas, the Sharpes and Donovans must band together to stop a killer.

No one creates exciting, action-packed romantic suspense and international intrigue like New York Times bestselling author Carla Neggers.

What readers are saying

"Everything is out of control, and nothing is as it seems, making for the intense, edge-of-your-seat whirlwind that best-selling Neggers does so well in her Sharpe & Donovan series. In this particularly wild cat-and-mouse installment, Neggers has her characters zipping from Maine to Ireland, where families form an alliance to take down a deadly killer." --Booklist

"[A] suspenseful, fast-moving thriller filled with plot twists and excitement to the delightful conclusion." --Reader TO Reader



*********************************************************************************

Giveaway Details - (US only)
Thanks to the publicist, I have one copy of Liar's Key to give away to my readers. To enter the giveaway, please fill out the rafflecopter below by August 29th. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

This giveaway is open to US residents only and ends August 19th.

Good Luck!!! 

Sunday, August 21, 2016

#FitReaders: Weekly Check-in August 19

 
 
 
Getting back into the swing of things after vacation is always tough...but I managed to get in 2 5K's and some yoga. I think my priority over the next few weeks has to be making sure I'm eating enough. I've been so tired lately...and I don't really think it's that I'm not getting enough sleep - I've never been one to need a lot of sleep. I'm starting to think it's that I'm not eating enough. I need to take a hard look at what I eat throughout the day and make sure its enough calories, protein and fat. I'm not a bit fan of tracking/writing down what I eat all day, but in this case I just might have to. Any tips or tricks would be greatly appreciated!!!


 My August Goals:
* Because I will be starting my training schedule for the big walk in September, I am using August as a "rest month."
  • 10K steps M-F, at least 7,500 steps on the weekend - Still on vacation over weekend, but nailed it from Monday on!
  • 30 minutes of active walking every day, M-F - 5/5
  • Eat mindfully - Work was a bit stressful this week, so this wasn't as sucessful :(

   
Here's how my week went:     
Aug 13:  10,533 steps
Aug 14:  5,660 steps
Aug 15:  16,136 steps
(5K - 4.02 Charity Miles for MS, 10 min Yoga)
Aug 16:  13,162 steps (5K - 3.28 Charity Miles for MS)

Aug 17:  11,517 steps (30 min fitness walking, 15 min Yoga)

Aug 18:  10
,226 steps (30 min fitness walking)
Aug 19: 
10,660 steps (30 min fitness walking)
Total Steps: 77,894 steps
 
 
Audiobooks listened to this week: 
  • Started and Finished The Opposite of Everyone by Joshilyn Jackson, narrated by Joshilyn Jackson

How did your week go? You can find this week's link-up here.



***In March of 2017, I'll be doing the CHALLENGE WALK MS in Savannah, GA. It is a three-day, 50-mile walk that tests your strength and your spirit, and makes an extraordinary difference in the lives of people with MS and their families.

To help me reach my fundraising goal, click here :)

 
Virtual 5K /10K Tally:
     January:                               May:
           5K  -  3                                  5K  -  9
         10K  -  0                                10K  -  2
     February:                             June:

           5K  -  4                                  5K  -  5
         10K  -  1                                 10K  -  5                  
     March:                                  July:
           5K  -  4                                  5K  -  3
         10K  -  1                                 10K  -  1
     April:                                    August:
           5K  -  4                                  5K  -  6
         10K  -  5                                 10K  -  1


 

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