Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Day 4: Down 7lbs!

I started a juicing diet on Sunday which consists of only raw fruits and veggies...juiced.  I do add some nuts occasionally for protein and vitamin B12, but that's about it.  It's all part of a reboot program based on a documentary I watched last weekend called Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.  The reboot is just a portion of the diet plan that resets your taste buds and cleanses your digestive system.  After the reboot (which can be 5-10-15-30, even 60 days), you eat a mostly vegan diet, with the option of occasional free-range, grass-fed and wild-caught meat and animal products.

So today I start day 4 of my reboot and I'm down 7lbs!  It's just the motivation I needed to keep me going through this liquid diet.  I'm not nearly as tired or hungry as I thought I would be, and I feel much lighter and leaner already.

This morning's breakfast started with a recipe from the Reboot Website but since I was out of kiwi's, I used plums, and from there just started adding ingredients until it contained the following concoction:

1 package of blueberries
16 strawberries
1 package of mint
2 plums
4-5 handfuls of spinach
1/3 of a canteloupe

It turned out to be a muddy looking juice, but the taste was nice!  Before adding the melon, it had a very strong, tart flavor.  The melon juice really mellowed things out and made it easily drinkable.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Juicing Before and After

For dinner tonight we opted for the V28 juice.  It's amazing how many vegetables and/or fruits go into these drinks!  No wonder they are so packed with vitamins and nutrients!



Day 1 of the Juicing Program

Today we started the first day of our new juice diet!  DH is going to do a 5 day reboot/cleanse, and I'm shooting for at least 15 days.  He plans to juice with me for breakfast and dinners at home, but eat soups and salads for lunch during work days.  I plan to juice for all three meals a day, with the goal of shedding some unwanted pounds before my 30th birthday coming up later in September.

We woke up early this morning, and while DH took the Shibas out, I loaded up the dishwasher with all the components of our deconstructed brand new juicing machine (we bought it last night).  We went back to bed for an hour or so, and then we woke up again and a reasonable hour, and were ready to make our first juice concoction!

First, we selected the Apple, Beet, Carrot & Ginger juice blend pictured above.  I was supposed to add Swiss Chard as well but forgot.  This blend turned out VERY ginger-y flavored, too the point that we had to add some agave nectar to try to balance out the taste... it didn't work very well.

For the second juice blend (we each drank half of the two juices this morning), we made  the "Wake Up Wowser", with 1 pear, 1 apple, 2 oranges, and 1 sweet potato.  We both agreed that this one was waaaaaay better and can't wait to try more fruity ones like it!

For lunch, we decided to do a juice with more greens in it, since we hadn't had any for breakfast, and figure that's where most of our daily protein will be coming from during the duration of this reboot program (we didn't realize at the time that our ginger-flavored drink this morning was supposed to have swiss chard in it too).

This is the amount of produce used just to make our lunch!

For lunch we made the "Great Greens" juice, which consisted of 2 Apples (they were supposed to be green but we only had "viking" apples), 2-3 cups of spinach, 6-8 leaves of Swiss Chard, 1 Cucumber, 4 stalks of celery, 1/2 fennel bulb, and 1 bunch of basil.

This one turned out only ok.  It tasted very bland, and the fennel was a little too overpoweringly licorice-like.  I forgot to add the basil, which may have cut that flavor and balanced things out, so if we try this one again I'll have to remember it!

We thought we might be super tired, feeling sick, or even running to the bathroom on this diet.  But so far, so good!  It is about 4pm, and we have one more meal to go on this diet today, and we are thinking a nice Mexican-Style Jugo or V28 would be nice for dinner.  Stay tuned for updates on the good, the bad, and the so-so on our little juicing adventure!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Lovely Morning at the Farmer's Market Today

We went to the Tosa Farmer's Market this morning to stock up on local and organic fresh fruits and vegetables for the new "juicing" diet  that I'm boldy starting this weekend.

I recently watched the documentary, Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead and was inspired by the health benefits and weight loss experienced by the individuals showcased in the film. In effort to shed a few pounds before my upcoming 30th birthday...and as part of my ongoing quest this summer to adopt a healthier lifestyle.

Part of the new diet, which contains only micronutrient foods, will mean cutting out all DH had to stop today by the coffee brewers at the market and get one last cup! (I cut the good stuff out about two months ago myself).

After loading up on almost $50 worth of produce, we headed out to the stores to buy my birthday present early... a juicer!  We went with the Jack La Lanne's Power Juicer Express from Kohls.  It came with a nice recipe book too!

Stay tuned for future posts detailing the specifics of this new "juicing" reboot diet & lifestyle!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Photo Book Giveaway!

Some may be aware that my newest obsession, er, hobby this summer, has been making photo books online.  It started after my trip to New Orleans in June.  I came back from a 5 day vacation with over 1000 pictures loaded on my digital camera.  

Around the same time, my dear husband (DH) and I recently bought a new computer and decided it was time to merge all of our digital photographs onto one computer, since we had to move files from the old computer to the new one anyway.  Trying to sort out pictures dating back four years from an old laptop I used to use in grad school, plus thousands more from my netbook (the only computer that actually had an SD drive, and thus stored the majority of our pictures), not to mention all the "cloud" sites that we were storing digital pictures on became an organizational nightmare!

Not only was it a daunting task to organize all these pictures (and if I were being honest I'd admit that I actually haven't finished this project yet), but it also made me realize how many hundreds upon thousands of pictures we have stored on computers and do nothing with!  I was determined to do something with my New Orleans pictures right away when the exhilaration of the trip was still fresh in my mind, and I would still be excited to show off the pictures and tell our stories.

As luck would have it, an online photo sharing & "creation" website that I have been using for years,, was running a sale for 50% off on all photobooks!  I had made a photobook once before after a summer spent studying and traveling in France and across Europe.  I loved the quality of that book and everyone had always been very impressed by my "professional" looking "published" book.  So I thought I'd take advantage of the great discount and try it again.

The photo book turned out great.  The online software used to create the book was as easy to use as I remembered it, and they had added many new backgrounds since I'd last used the service, and even a new "photo as cover" feature.  When the book arrived, I was very impressed by the quality of the cover, paper, binding, and image printing.  I showed off the book to friends and family and they were once again very impressed.  As this was actually a "work trip" (for a conference), I even took the book with me to work to show all my colleagues how much fun the city was in the evenings after the conference was over each night!

The responses I received from the photobook were so positive, that when a, deal became available in my city for $115 towards a photobook from (for only $35), I became very interested.  I knew other photo storage websites like and also made photobooks in addition to all the other merchandise they create out of people's photos uploaded online, but I didn't realize that there were other companies available to the general public (not just professional photographers), that simply published photobooks online, and that's all they do.  I became very excited that I may have finally found something worthy of my wedding photos (which I had the digital rights to, but no professional photo albums).  So I read a few reviews of the website, decided it was legit, and ordered the Groupon.

The photobook software was AMAZING!  I had to download it to my computer (I was used to doing everything online), and it was fully customizable.  I had a great deal of fun learning how to use the software to create different layouts, manipulate my images, and create a treasured keepsake for my husband and I.  While googleing ideas for layout designs, I happened to come across a blog and website called  Finding this site was like hitting the jackpot!  The author reviews all kinds of different photobook publishing companies, lists various groupons, sales, and giveaways to various companies, and writes a blog with advice and ideas related to making photobooks and photography in general.  One look at the "deals" page and I was hooked. 

The great thing is, there is usually only one groupon on any given day for the city/area you live in.  However, photobooks are all based online and are not tied to any one geographic location.  So if I wanted to sample photobooks from a variety of different companies in order to find my favorite one, all I have to do to get a good deal is visit photobookgirl's site and see what city has a deal that day on the company I want to try.  Then I log in, buy it, and it's mine!

So far I've sampled snapfish, shutterfly, my photobook america, and I'm currently working on a picaboo book.  I've got some groupons waiting for me from mixbook too, and I keep watching for one from Mypublisher.  

I'm making a series of volumes related to our wedding (2 years later!).  So I'll have one for our European Engagement, another for the engagement itself (including wedding planning, showers, the rehearsal dinner, etc), one for the morning of the wedding and formal pictures, another for the ceremony itself, one for the reception, and then two for the honeymoon (we spent two weeks island hopping in Greece and I couldn't fit it all in one book without going over the page limit that keeps the books affordable).  Beyond that, I have great ideas for doing a "yearbook" of our activities and events each year, maybe make up some various ones for different groups of friends over the years, perhaps some various vacations, and of course one of our two Shiba Inu dogs, for I am after all, the Queen of Shibas!

So, now that I've told the story of how I came to be so interested in photo book publishing, I have an exciting announcement to share with friends and followers who are interested in this new hobby: is giving away one free photobook from to one lucky contest winner!  I'm so excited to enter in all 6 possible ways!  Will you take the plunge into the deep end and enter too?  I warn you, once you enter, you may never find your way back out :)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

I'm here!

I met the author of this book at the ALA Conference
 I attended in New Orleans this summer! ~ Super nice lady!
I'm here, I'm here, I'm finally here!  After years and years of playing with different blog software products, "himming" and "hawing" about what kind of "themed" blogs I could make, I have finally just decided to throw out all my tendencies for over-thinking things and JUST DO IT!

So here I am, I'm blogging about whatever seems interesting to me at the moment.  I hope this can serve as a way to keep in touch with those who are not on Facebook, which is where I usually update my world on what's going on in my life :)

So sit back, relax, and enjoy the show.  And hey, if you really like what you see, give me a comment or two.  I've always been a sucker for praise and instant affirmation :)