5 Books for Parents to Be

Disclosure: This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

My sister purchased several best sellers for me to read before Emilia makes her debut in July. I always end my day snuggled in bed with my doTERRA Petal diffuser blasting lavender engrossed in a book. Reading has always had a calming effect on me. These are currently on my nightstand:

I Heart My Little A-Holes: A bunch of holy-crap moments no one ever told you about parenting by Karen Alpert

I finished this book in 3 days and laughed out loud almost every single page. It made me realize how my life is going to completely change in a few months. Kids are true blessings – but I know that this parenting ride may not always present with smooth sails. The author has a comical way of giving us soon-to-be parents a glimpse into reality.

The Baby Owner’s Manual: Operating Instructions, Trouble-Shooting Tips, and Advice on First-Year Maintenance (Owner’s and Instruction Manual) by Louis Borgenicht M.D and Joe Borgenicht

Another light-hearted, non-threatening read that I finished over the course of a week. It covers the basics, but with some new information that has changed since my babysitting and nannying days. It calls doctors “service providers,” which always gives me a good chuckle. This owner’s manual also helped me with a few things on my baby registry.

So That’s What They’re For!: The Definitive Breastfeeding Guide 3rd edition by Janet Tamaro

Breastfeeding. This is my take on breastfeeding; fed is best. I am hoping that Emilia and I both enjoy and have an easy breastfeeding experience. If not, formula it will be. I was a formula kid. So was my sister, husband, and sister-in-law. We all turned out somewhat normal. Our moms didn’t even attempt breastfeeding. I, on the other hand, would like to give it a try. Of course, like any new mom, I’m nervous, so this book is a great way to educate me on everything relating to breastfeeding in an informative, direct, conversational way.

Your Baby’s First Year For Dummies by James Gaylord, MD and Michelle Hagen

I love for Dummies books. It breaks everything down so simply and reviews every topic within the baby’s first year. I like how it has pictures (I’m a visual learner) and pediatrician recommendations that really helped me to formulate a plan when Emilia arrives. The book is extensive, so the index is super helpful when I want to read a specific topic.

Show Dad How (Parenting Magazine): The Brand-New Dad’s Guide to Baby’s First Year by Shawn Bean

Jason claims he has never been much of a reader so when my sister surprised him with this Show Dad How book, I got really excited because this is a very simple picture book to learn how to do basic things, like change a diaper. It provides comedic relief, as we all know, raising children does take a village.

bake bread

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BOOK REVIEW: Souping is the New Juicing by Cherie Calbom, MS

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. 

When my mom knows I am feeling under the weather, she expects that I will ask her to whip up some homemade chicken noodle soup to ease my sniffles and congestion. As the weather gets colder, I love to experiment with new soup ideas using my slow cooker and pressure cooker. I was eager to review Souping is the New Juicing by Cherie Calbom since I am mostly dairy and gluten free. I have tried juicing and wound up selling my juicer for $25 at a garage sale. I didn’t care for the blueberry stained ceiling. And, who has the time to clean everything? Not me – so souping seems like a more efficient option.

I read Souping is the New Juicing in two days. It’s a very easy, informative read.

Souping is the New Juicing begins with Cherie’s story. I really enjoyed learning about the authors experience that lead her to live a healthier lifestyle. Sometimes it takes tragedy and hardship to change our habits, routines, and roles and ultimately prevail

Living Foods was one of my favorite chapters where Cherie breaks down important components of soups (i.e. asparagus, watercress, cilantro) and explains why they are important. I like to know why foods are good for me to eat, and I learned that rosemary, one of my favorite herbs, has the ability to improve mood, increases intelligence, boosts memory, and relives pain (Souping is the New Juicing, p 55).

Souping is the New Juicing then educates us how to detox with soup. You take quizzes throughout this chapter, discovering if you have a build up of toxicity, and/or if you are in need of a colon, kidney, liver, or lymphatic cleanse. This section is very thorough!

Cherie has a chapter on soups for weight loss. Cherie taught me that mushrooms, legumes, watercress, almonds and coconut oil are great for weight loss. (Souping is the New Juicing, 117-118). I haven’t tried watercress, but am going to put that on my shopping list for my next soup adventure.

I appreciate all of the research that Cherie has put into Souping is the New Juicing. She has many studies and sources listed, which helps me to understand why souping works!

The last chapter of the book is dedicated to recipes. Categories of soup recipes include:

  • raw blender
  • gently warmed
  • creamy
  • vegetable
  • healing
  • detox
  • soups with legumes
  • soups with muscle meat

I appreciate that all of the recipes are gluten, dairy, and sugar free.

Although it’s ideal to cook soup in a stock pot on the stove, most of the recipes in this book can be prepared in my Blend-Tec, pressure cooker or slow cooker. I also recommend a good immersion blender.

I experimented – not quite following the recipes in the book, but including ingredients that Cherie mentioned in the third chapter. (The right picture, below contains chicken broth, water, spinach, leeks, sweet potatoes, jalapenos, and onions that I threw together in my pressure cooker. The left picture contains vegetable broth, sweet potatoes, leeks, and spinach that was the result of 8 hours in the slow cooker.)

Soups certainly warms my soul, and they definitely make me feel good about myself. I know that I am giving my body what it deserves – nutrients, vitamins, minerals, enzymes…and the list continues… Souping is the New Juicing by Cherie Calbom

Souping is the New Juicing is a terrific reference and a constant go-to on my cookbook shelf. I would recommend Souping is the New Juicing to anyone looking to incorporate healthy soups into their diet.

About Cherie Calbom

Cherie Calbom earned a Master of Science degree in whole foods nutrition from Bastyr University. She is the author of 35 books including Juicing for Life with more than 2 million books sold in the U.S. and published in 23 countries. She has worked as a celebrity nutritionist with George Foreman and Richard Simmons, and has appeared on numerous radio and TV shows. Known as “The Juice Lady” for her work with juicing and health, her juice therapy and cleansing programs have been popular for more than a decade.

Visit Cherie’s website, and be sure to visit her on Facebook, and Twitter.

Namaste.

BOOK REVIEW: One Dog’s Faith: How My Dog Helped Me Trust in God and Overcome Chronic Worrying by Tom Baker

Disclosure: This review contains affiliate links.

I love my dogs, Bailey and Gino. We rescued Bailey from Caring Canine Connections when she was 10 weeks old. She was a stray in a high kill shelter in North Carolina. (She was going to be euthanized over Thanksgiving.) Apparently, she was bitten during transport up to New Jersey, leaving a tear in her ear. Gino, my Chihuahua mix, was dumped out on the street. I went with volunteers from CCC to save 19 dogs from a high kill shelter back in July. Gino sat on my lap the entire drive back home. He looked at me with his big bug eyes as I whispered sweet nothings like “You are okay, little man. No one will ever hurt you again.” into his ears, which were drawn back and down. He was supposed to be killed over the Fourth of July.

I often say that my dogs saved me from myself. They have come into my life when I needed them most. Anxiety and worry are both useless emotions, but have overcome me when I was frantic about finances, health concerns, switching jobs, and finding work. I tried to tell myself that I was living the American dream, but some days felt like a true nightmare.

I received an autographed review copy of One Dog’s Faith: How My Dog Helped Me Trust in God and Overcome Chronic Worrying by Tom Baker. The book is written from his dog, Mango’s, point of view, which adds humor and lightheartedness to the story. Tom adds his perspective at the end of each chapter. One Dog’s Faith is a Christian book, and has several references to God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and the Bible. (As most of you know from my previous posts, I was raised Catholic, but do not practice. I consider myself more spiritual and believe in the religion of karma and being nice to others.) Since I love dogs and have been successfully managing my anxiety for ten years, I figured it would be a good read. It turns out, I really loved this book. I have many tabbed pages with important life reminders.

One Dog's Faith by Tom Baker

I interrupted Bailey during her nap to capture the perfect picture.

Tom Baker writes in One Dog’s Faith: How My Dog Helped Me Trust in God and Overcome Chronic Worrying:

“He [God] allows us to go through some pain in order to progress toward improvement. He sometimes has to hold us down in the middle of our misery to help us find our comfort and happiness. God sees the big picture and knows what’s best for each and every being.” (p. 114)

“Fear is powerful if you let it take over. Fear and faith can’t live in the same dog house.” (p. 168)

“Michelle just said, ‘Give it up…Give it to God…God will provide…God will make a way,’ And He always did, without fail. I saw it; she saw it.” (p 191)

One Dog’s Faith: How My Dog Helped Me Trust in God and Overcome Chronic Worrying is a feel-good book. It put many things into perspective. I used to come home from a long day at work and instantly start preparing for the next day. I would lay my scrubs out, prepare a lunch and start dinner, set the coffeemaker, pay bills, fold laundry, empty the dishwasher. I was going through the motions, preparing for something that wasn’t even guaranteed. My dogs would be begging for my attention, showing their gratitude and happiness that I was finally home. Now, when I get home from work, I drop my stuff on the table and sit on the floor to give them lots of love. I take them for a walk outside and smell the fresh air. I silently thank God for giving me another beautiful day and the opportunity to be able to come home from a day of work and spend time with my husband and furbabies. I learned to not take life so seriously. One Dog’s Faith offers perspectives that make you think about your life and how to improve upon your relationships with others, as well as God.

One Dog's Faith by Tom Baker

Gino with One Dog’s Faith by Tom Baker

Mango reminds us that dogs live for the moment. They don’t take things seriously. They are happy with very little, and that they truly value their time with us on Earth. I watch Bailey and Gino in awe. They, like Mango, have taught me to let go, trust God, follow instead of lead, and the true meaning of unconditional love.

Be sure to purchase One Dog’s Faith: How My Dog Helped Me Trust in God and Overcome Chronic Worrying on Amazon. One lucky winner will win a copy.

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ONE DOG’S FAITH

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Rules: Must be 18 years of age or older and a resident of the continental USA. Winner must provide name, address, e-mail, and phone number within 24 hours of the close of the giveaway or another winner will be selected. You will receive one copy of One Dog’s Faith: How My Dog Helped Me Trust in God and Overcome Chronic Worrying. Contest runs from October 24, 2017 at 12:00 AM until November 7 at 12:00 AM. Good luck!

Visit Tom Baker’s website: One Dog’s Faith and follow him on social media: FacebookInstagramLinkedIn. Don’t forget to connect with the author’s dog, Mango, on Facebook!

Namaste.

Disclosure: I received a copy of One Dog’s Faith: How My Dog Helped Me Trust in God and Overcome Chronic Worrying complimentary for review purposes. All opinions within are my own. If you are interested in having your product on Realm of Vibes, e-mail realmofvibesdg@gmail.com for more information or fill out the form on my Contact page.

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Book Review: Pantry and Palate: Remembering and Rediscovering Acadian Food by Simon Thibault

My husband and I are obsessed with eating local food and visiting Canada. At dinner last night, he mentioned that we should plan another trip there so that we know where to move when he retires (14.5 years and counting!) I never heard of Acadian cuisine but was excited and intrigued to learn more.

Enter Pantry and Palate: Remembering and Rediscovering Acadian Food by Simon Thibault. A cookbook into a history-lesson-slash-novel where I was wishing I was in his Grandmother’s kitchen cooking these delectable items right alongside her…Simon, you are so lucky to have had a Grandma who cooked and kept records! (And I commend your efforts of extensive research!)

A favorite line from Pantry and Palate: Remembering and Rediscovering Acadian Food:

“When talking about our favourite dishes, many of us start by saying that “My grandmother made,” or “My [insert family member] made,” and then talk about how those particular dishes were made in very particular ways.”

My mother has my Grandma’s meatball recipe. I know that my sister and I will fight over who gets the real handwritten version. I digress…

 

The first section of Pantry and Palate: Remembering and Rediscovering Acadian Food is Preserves in which I can’t wait to make his salted green onion recipe. I use scallions on my nacho platter and in all my soup recipes. This just sounds delicious and would be a great addition to my daily recipes.

 

The second chapter is for the Breadmaking folk. I have both a gluten and dairy intolerance, so the only place I make bread is with my clients at work. These recipes seem simple enough – so sometime this week I will gather ingredients I don’t have in my pantry (there is a nice segment on stocking your pantry in Pantry and Palate) and choose a lucky client to make delicious bread.

Lard encompasses the third chapter. I never worked with lard. I don’t know if I want to work with lard. Lard seems like something I rather read about then experiment with in my kitchen. Sorry, Simon!

Tȇte de Cochon is the next section. Simon, you are more than welcome to come to my home in New Jersey and give me private instruction on cooking a pig’s head! (That would make a really great YouTube video, I promise!) I appreciate the Acadian cuisine but am not this adventurous when it comes to cooking.

The next two sections are my favorite! Section 5 reads Soups, Sides, and Staples while the last is Desserts. I love Meat Pies, and it reminds me of when my Grandmother made them when she was alive and well. Simon gives a few variations, one I hope to try soon. He also gives a Potato Pancake recipe that I can’t wait to make! I always wanted to make potato pancakes but couldn’t find the right recipe. I tabbed this page instantaneously! And, you better believe, that I will be making his Scalloped Cabbage recipe for Thanksgiving. I had to Google “summer savory” spice is and added it to my shopping list. I think this is my favorite chapter of Pantry and Palate; meals I can make simply and that I know will taste delicious.

I love desserts, but with my food allergies, I only eat them on very special occasions and have my DigestZen from doTERRA on standby. I think the Baked Apple Pudding recipe will be a hit for the holidays. I also have always wanted to experiment with rhubarb and his clear, concise directions make me feel like I can tackle that task.

Simon Thibault

©2017, Photographs by Noah Fecks. All rights reserved. Published by Nimbus Publishing

Pantry and Palate isn’t for those looking for thirty-minute meals, or people who need an illustration with every step. Pantry and Palate would be best for those looking to experience cooking and who want to integrate culture into their meals. When I read Pantry and Palate, I feel like I am holding a distinct piece of Acadian history in my hands. Thank you, Simon, for opening my eyes into a world I didn’t know existed. Pantry to Palate is a cookbook that I certainly cherish and will begin making my tabbed recipes immediately.

Amazon Affiliate link: Click here to purchase Pantry and Palate: Remembering and Rediscovering Acadian Food.

Please visit Simon Thibault’s website here, and follow him on Instagram.

Namaste.

 

Pantry and Palate by Simon Thibault

My copy of Pantry and Palate by Simon Thibault

 

Disclosure: Pantry to Palate was sent to me complimentary for review purposes. All opinions within are my own. If you would like your product featured on Realm of Vibes, visit my Contact page or e-mail realmofvibesdg@gmail.com