Thursday, July 31, 2014

Catching Up


I normally do these types of posts on Monday's, but decided to post it today instead because it works out better for me playing catch up.
Plus, I won't be doing a Monday post next week, so if figured today is as good of day as any:)
I have so many updates to share, and I am seriously excited about several of them.  I'm sorry, that this post is so long, feel free to just skim it all, LOL.


One of the views from my mountain running
WORK INJURIES W/ THE TENDONS
Okay, so a couple of weeks ago I was debating on whether to keep my Dr. Appt for the 2nd foot problems.  I had problems for 3 months, and it took me almost two months to get in to the Specialist.  The fact that I had been out of pain for 2 weeks I decided to call the Specialist and not cancel but reschedule.  I figure this worked for me both ways.  No point in going now if there isn't pain, but if as I started becoming active again if the pain comes back, I already have an appointment scheduled.
Now almost two weeks later, best decision I could have made!

Another view on my mountain running route
UPDATES ON ALL INJURIES 
FINALLY, after 18 months of pain.  19 marathons having to be cancelled and about 1 year off running and cardio entirely.  I am finally healing fabulously!  I want to say that on a scale of 100, I am at 90% healed and healing more and more each week.

Lft Foot, Original Peroneal and Achillies tendon injuries (work injury), only mild swelling remains and rarely have any pain.

Rt Foot (became injured after taking too much strain from the other long injury, injury (my guess is Nerve Entrapment) is pretty much healed.  It hasn't bothered me and has responded perfectly to the therapy I have been doing.

Another view from my running route.
Hip Flexor (running related) - Anyone who has ever torn their hip flexor knows how it feels to feel like your leg and groan area are being torn apart with every step.  This being my 2nd time with this injury I attacked it day 1.  By 2 weeks I was 80% healed, and by 3 weeks, I want to say 99% healed.  I only say that because it's good to be cautious for a while.
I also found out the reason I was having problems in the first place was stretching early on in workouts, I have cut that out.  I'm going back to only stretching after a workout and never before, just getting into a workout gradual for the warm up.  Everyone is different, but this is what works best for my body, I honestly don't know why I switched that up and started doing that again in the first place:)  Guess I like to learn my lesson's over and over and over again:)

My early morning running trail

CAMPING
Possibly you noticed I wasn't blogging much, and was unable to respond to comments for a while, I apologize I wouldn't have pre-scheduled all my posts if I had known I would be leaving.

Spur of the moment a week ago Sunday I decided to wake up early Monday morning and go with my parents to see if we could find a spot to camp.  (I am single, so yes I go camping with my parents, but they are active and awesome so it's fun!)
We found the exact spot we wanted, and it was vacant.  So we paid for it, drove back home and packed up and headed back up.

We went camping for 7 1/2 days and boy did I need it!
I literally packed for this trip in about 15 minutes, I think that is a record for me.  Of course I did spend about 45 minutes at the grocery store too, but I don't count that:)
It was a great week, relaxed, read a few great books.  Went running almost every day, and hiking.
Yes, I slept in a tent.  But my parents own 5th wheel trailer so thankfully I can take advantage of a daily shower after a long hike or workout:)
I'm already looking forward to the next time I can go camping and I have one coming up pretty soon!

View on one of my hiking trails over the past week


HIKING
This gets its own section.  So for several years I had been wanting to take this hike up to a beautiful place called Blanche Lake in the Wasatch Mountains.  But in 2011 & 2012 when I heard about it I couldn't do it because I was running marathons, and I don't do strenuous hikes that could risk injury when I have marathons in the works.
Last year I couldn't do it, because well injured....
So I asked my dad, if he would go with me this past week, and he of course said yes.  So we headed out Saturday morning.

I'm actually going to do a "Hiking Tuesday" post on it, so I won't go into detail.  But the first 3 miles you are hiking steadily up in elevation not quite a 3,000 feet elevation climb.  You never loose any elevation it's just a constant climb up the entire time to about 9,000 feet.  Sheesh did it tell me I was out of shape:)  I won't lie, we stopped often to catch our breath before climbing up more again.

Taking a rest at the top.
Then when you come back you get all downhill.  (That is the hard part.  LOL)

For body not quite in its best shape, lets just say that afternoon my legs were Jello, and I haven't been this sore since my last mountain marathon LOL.
It is awesome to be so sore, I feel so flipping alive again I LOVE IT!!!!
I know that sounds dorky, but I have been singing that tune to everyone I talk to for a few days now and I don't even care I'm going to keep on loving it!!!

I didn't think my Hip Flexor would last, but I was careful and the fact that it let me climb 3,000 feet and not tear in worse pain, made me realize thing sucker is all but healed!
It gave my achillies and peroneal tendons a crazy workout too.  I've been working super hard the past few months strengthening these, and boy did it pay off.  I didn't get any additional swelling or pain from all that climbing and pulling on the tendons, pretty cool huh!

By the end of the day all said and done, I had done 11.5 miles.  Yeah, no kidding, no wonder I could barely walk the next day!  I think back to the days where I used to run a 20 miler in the morning just to get the day going and I wouldn't be sore from it.  Well it just goes to show how much work I have cut out for me to slowly get built back up to that!

Isn't it beautiful?  The view from the top looking at Lake Blanche
and the mountain in the back is called Sundial.

RUNNING & WORKOUTS
Saved this baby for last:) because I am so thrilled to be back!!!!
Being up camping, all of my running/walking was done between 8500 - 9000 feet in elevation.  Which basically meant, it gives my lungs a much better workout.  What better way to get back into running!

I hit up some of my favorite hilly mountain trail (paved) area's.
I haven't run on these hilly trails (7%-15% grades) in a few years, it was amazing to get back on them. These are the trails I normally used in years past to help break my lungs in better when I am boosting my mileage.  But in this instance a great place to get back into it.

7/21 - 4 Miles (1 mile ran) 11,408 daily steps - 19 floors climbed
7/22 - 5 Miles (1.5 Miles ran) 12,300 daily steps - 49 floors climbed
7/23 - 3 Miles (2 miles ran) 10,217 daily steps - 42 floors climbed
7/24 - 1 Mile Walk Rest Day
7/25 - 6 Miles (run/walk) 15,092 daily steps - 68 floors climbed
7/26 - 11.55 Miles (hiked) 27,650 daily steps - 271 floors climbed
7/27 - 1 Mile walk - Rest Day
7/28 - 4 Miles (1.5 miles ran) 9,787 daily steps - 36 floors climbed - Took it easy, run and walk were light to loosen the sore muscles.
-Vacation Over, but I am keeping up the new fitness routines at home!- 


Another view from my hike looking back down from the canyon
where we started hiking.

WHAT'S NEXT?

Well, I am going to be playing it super cautious for a while.  As soon as I can go 2 months without worsening injuries, or any pain then I will consider myself healed.
Yes, I will be running.  In fact I will be gradually increasing my weekly mileage each week.  Right now my days consist of 50/50ish run/walk so I can get a 75 min workout in minimum.  However, as I get in better shape I'll transition the walking into all running, and then eventually start to increase the daily mileage.
I'm hoping if everything goes as planned by September I'll be up to 5-6 miles each day.
I do have more trips planned, and I have lots and lots of more hiking planned.  In fact there are a few more hikes here in Utah that I put off in previous years because I was training for marathons.  That this summer seems like it will be the perfect time to get them in!

Hope everyone else has been having a good summer!
Injury free, or injuries healing!!!
Do you hike?  Do you have any fun hikes planned for the summer, or weekends?



Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Catherine by April Linder a Book Review

Have you read Wurthering Heights?  I am sad to say I have never read the actual story, however I have heard about the story.  April Linder author of Jane has taken another Bronte novel and brought it to modern day life.  When I saw it I had to pick it up, after all she did an amazing job with Jane.  I absolutely adored her story of Catherine, so much!  It has me adding Wurthering Heights to my summer reading list, it made me love the story that much!

Catherine is actually two stories in one, but yet those two stories have everything to do with the other.  Chelsea was raised believing her mother died when she was young, she was raised by her father who did his best but she has always felt like she missed out a little.  One day while snooping around her fathers things she came across a letter that her mother had written her.
Chelsea realizes what her father had told her were lies, and the minute her father gives her the predictable birthday money she knows is coming on her seventeenth birthday.  She runs away to New York, she is bound and determined to solve the mystery of where her mother.

Catherine's story is weaved in with Chelsea's, and when it is Catherine's turn the readers go back in time, to Catherine at the age of seventeen.  We are invited into her live to see the story of her past unfold as it happened.  We get to know her, love her.  We find out how she fell in love with the only man who would ever have her heart Hence.  We find out what happened, how their love began and what happened to them.

Chelsea goes to the place her mom used to live, only to discover it is a popular music club owned by a grumpy and rude man named Hence.  She shocked him by appearing, and he shocked her by allowing her to stay a few days in her mothers old room while she does her searching.
It doesn't take long before Chelsea discovers Catherine's secret journal, and she begins reading about the life her mother had at the club, and her love with Hence.

The reader has the opportunity to fall in love with two different stories, and possibly even two different love stories.  At the same time although different they are the keys to finding out what happened to Catherine and why she disappeared on a day that she had everything to look forward to a new future.
Catherine will have your heart wanting more, and loving every bit of it.  As a modern day retelling of a classic April Linder did a great job.

This book is considered a Young Adult, however because of the content I personally feel it was written with an older audience in mind.  There is a little bit of language and a few scene's that I wouldn't recommend for readers under 16.  With that said, this is one on my "I highly recommend" list!
If your looking for a great summer romance read, you'll love Catherine!


Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Gettysburg National Military Park


This week for Travel Tuesday I'd like to show you Gettysburg National Military Park.
Gettysburg was the turning point in the Civil War.  Famously know for President Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address.  But it was also the place of a few other known and lesser known facts.  It's also an amazing place to visit, and great for solo trips or family adventures!


Gettysburg is a place that can be seen in one day, and although you can sign up for a tour you can also take the "Auto Tour" in your own car and see things at your own pace.
Stop in at the visitor's center first, and get a map of the "Auto Tour" and set out to explore some of America's most well known history.



Did you know that their are over 1,400 markers, monuments or tablet mentions within the park?



As you visit the park or even if the closest you'll get are these pictures.  Did you know over 51,000 were either wounded or killed in these rolling hills?


It actually didn't rain during the battle of Gettysburg, but the day after the war it rained heavily and soaked it all.  In fact it was actually fought during the hottest time of the year and was near 90 degree's the day of Pickett's march July 3rd.
However, the day I visited it was raining off and on, so all of my pictures are a little cloudy in the skies and wet:)


An interesting fact: Even though the war was wide spread and fought in literally a thousand different places and lasted many years.  A little over one third of all of the photographs of the dead you see in the history books were actually all taken at Gettysburg during the three day period between July 1-3, 1863.



Above is a of the view of one of the major battles.  An interesting fact, most of the dead were left laying on the ground, and the nearby towns people had to go out and find and bury them.  The National Cemetery was actually created to give those killed in action a respectful place to be buried.


Over 3,000 horses were killed during the battle.  They were left for the town to take care of, it is said that they burned them in a bonfire, but most fell ill right after because of the smell it put off.


Another odd fact, there were over 2,500 civilians who were in the battle area during the time.  However, only one died by a stray bullet.  Most civilians stayed indoors and in hiding at the time.



After the battle there were over 24,000 loaded rifles left on the battlefield.  In a way for the Army to resupply and get help gathering things for use the Army paid the citizens in the are 13 cents per pound of lead they could gather for them.



Before the battle the town of Gettysburg was actually a very prosperous place, even sported a couple of colleges.  However the battle that took place their ruined their image and after that there was no going back, they were forever to be known for the battle and the bloodied and wounded.



Although you can see most of the larger markers on the road along the auto tour.  If you want to get out on your feet there are so many hidden and overlooked gems within the military park that you can only see if you go out on foot and do a little walking or hiking.


They do have things set up to give you a unique sense of how it looked back then.  The war between the north and the south, brother fighting brother.  I believe (to my knowledge) most are replica however their are some with plaques on them that will tell you if they are the actual ones.  I could see some turning green with oxidation so I assumed those were real, even though at the time I visited when it was raining I didn't get out and walk the fields as much as I would have liked.


Some say this is one of those places if you visit many times in your life, you are able to discover something new each time.


The above picture is the monument for the famous Gettysburg Address, however this is actually not where it happened.   The picture below, is the actual place that the Famous words "Four Score..." were spoken.


Before Lincoln spoke his famous address November 19, 1863, the crowd had to listen to a 2 hour oration by Edward Everett.  Lincoln's speech they say only lasted two minutes.  The reason for it was actually a dedication of the Soldiers National Cemetery.
Did you know, Lincoln was actually ill during his famous address, they say he was getting over Smallpox.


Another interesting fact, did you know at the time, the press and many thought Lincoln's address was terrible?



If you can't tell I love history, especially American history.  I find it fascinating and for a girl who loves the outdoors a lot of history can be explored by foot and sometimes you can find your own little adventures from visiting and learning about it.

Additionally, I believe it is important to learn about and understand American history!  Now days so many things are taken for granted, especially our freedoms.  In my opinion most of the people who take them for granted should take themselves on a history lesson of our past.
If we loose sight of the events that happened in the past, it is too easy to forget why our country formed things the way they did early on when America was still taking shape.

I hope you enjoyed my tribute this patriotic month of July, showcasing some of America's historical sites.  I highly recommend if you ever get the chance to visit some of our historical sites, you take the opportunity!

So tell me, what are your favorite parts of American history?  What area's have you visited and enjoyed seeing and learning more about?





Although some facts I knew myself from school and visiting the area.  Some of the facts I acquired from these sites and feel I should properly site those for reference:
http://www.civilwar.org/education/history/faq/
http://battleofgettysburgbuff.com/Something_Different.htm



Wednesday, July 23, 2014

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak a Book Review

Occasionally I like to step away from the different genre's I enjoy reading and pick up something that I feel will be a bit more fulfilling in an educational sort of way.  Which is why when I was stuck at an airport for a while and browsing the available books I decided to choose The Book Thief.

I really didn't know what to expect and I'll be honest it took me about 30 pages before I really got into it, and became used to the unique writing.  Having death as the narrator was interesting and took a bit of getting used to at first, because I kept forgetting it was death and thinking it was a character at first.  But that may just have been me.

This is a story about a young girl Liesel who loses her family, and then her brother and is basically left orphaned.  Little does she know she is about to define herself and possibly the rest of her life.  Picking up a book The Grave Digger's Handbook out of the snow at taking it with her.  From a young age she realizes she has a massive love for books, and when her foster father teaches her to read it opens her world up into possibilities she never imagined.

Its a very dangerous time in Germany, it's 1939 an death is on every one's door step.  Liesel, steals a book here and a book there to help uplift her life.
Liesel's foster father one day surprises her by hiding a Jewish man in their basement.  At first Liesel is annoyed and isn't sure about the risks.  But finds herself loving this man, and looking forward to the time she spends with him.  That includes reading to him chapters of her stolen books.

Event after event take place, and although the story itself isn't exactly one you would smile and be happy with.  Reading it does give you a sense of appreciation for what not only the Jews went through during Hitler's reign, but also what the German's went through.  Both the ones who supported and hated their Nazi leader during the time.

But you also get brought into a story of hope, and loss that will sit with you deeply.  Although it took me a bit longer than normal to get through this book.  I really enjoyed it and I am glad I took the chance to try something new and different from what I normally read.
This book is uniquely and beautifully written, that is a guarantee.  But if you enjoy a story that is both a learning experience and one that can give you a deeper appreciation of a time when the world was far more crazy, and death was around every corner.  Then I highly recommend you taking the time to read The Book Thief by Markus Zusak.
Now I can go and check out the movie:)  I've been holding of on watching it until I finished the book first.


Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Visiting Antietam National Battlefield


I mentioned earlier this month, in celebration of our Independence Day, each Tuesday I am dedicating a Travel Tuesday post, to a place in American History, that I really think are must see's in your lifetime.
This week, I'd like to take you to Antietam.



Antietam National Battlefield Park in Maryland is one of those places that if you love history, enjoy learning about the Civil War and American History, you'll want to add this as a travel destination place.





Antietam in a single one day, this was the bloodiest battlefield in America's entire history.  September 17, 1862 over 23,000 soldiers were killed wounded or went missing in action.  These now beautiful pictures you see, back on that day of war looked much much different.



This battle was a major milestone in the Civil War.  This bloody one day battle let to Abraham Lincoln's famous Emancipation Proclamation.  Because of this battle, and then the Proclamation the slaves were freed.



Make your first stop at the visitor center.  Here you can view not only the weapons and uniforms and learn the history you will want to know before venturing out on the auto tour.  But there are also pictures, that will give you an incredibly vivid account of how dangerous and bloody that war was for Americans.



Then take the self guided auto tour (8.5 miles long) and learn at each of the 11 different stops along the tour.





If you have more than an hour, I highly recommend taking a few short hikes in the park.  Mainly the hike down Bloody Lane.  (More men died on this lane than anywhere else in the entire civil war.)  As you walk through it, you can reflect on how it may have looked and how scary it would have been to be a soldier on either side on that fateful day.



I remember one of the Forest Rangers telling me that the shots began during the early dawn hours.  Soldiers were fighting in a corn field, which at the time they wouldn't have really been able to see well, no only could they not see where their shots were going, but they could not see the enemy's shots coming at them.  Because the area was also rocky, bullet ricochet off them, it was apparently slaughter in some areas. Shooting blind I believe is what he called it.  I can't even imagine, and hope I never do have to witness mortal combat like this.



If you are a runner, you may like this.  The Freedom's Run Marathon, which was the reason I visited this site.  During that marathon you will have the opportunity to run through history and 4 different National Parks: Antietam, Harper's Ferry, C&O Canal, Potomac Heritage trail.  Let me tell you it is an absolutely beautiful run.  If you'd like to read about my marathon experience and more details on what you will actually get to see and travel through during the race, you can catch it HERE.



The photo's alone don't really tell the story, this is one of those places you really do need to spend a little time and enjoy the act of learning.  Using your imaginary skills as you walk the trails and paths and read about the different markers and what they mean.
I took my time in Antietam and spent several hours.  This is easily one of those destinations you can spend an hour or a half a day or more just depending on what you like to do.


Do you enjoy learning about American history?  Have you ever been to Antietam before?










Monday, July 21, 2014

Christmas in July Giveaway Hop

This is the second time I have participated in the Christmas in July Giveaway Hop.  One of my greatest pleasure's in life is reading a great book!

Which is why each Wednesday on my blog, you can come and visit and read a review about a great book I have enjoyed.  I review a lot of Young Adult Ficition, Dystopian, Fantasy, Paranormal.  I also enjoy Adult Fiction and Clean Romance.  Hope you'll want to come back after the hop and follow me and my reviews.

Thank you to I Am a Reader and Laurie Here for hosting this hop!
To keep in theme with this hop's rules, I am giving away a Christmas book, one that is quite cute, by an author that I knew as I was growing up.  But I am not just giving it away for that reason, it's a great book, fun story, with an important message behind it.


So on my blog one winner will have the chance to win a copy of The Candy Cane Queen by Janice Sperry.  OR if you are an INT winner, you will receive a $10 Amazon Gift Card.

I'm making it easy to enter my giveaway, just enter in the Rafflecopter form below.
That's it, your done.  There are lots of other blogs in this hop, so when you are finished hop on over to the next and enter their giveaway too.

RULES: You must be 18 or older to enter my hop.  I am opening this up to both US and INT.  However, to win the book, you must have a US shipping address.  If you are an INT winner, I will email you a $10 Amazon gift card so you can purchase your own book.

That's it!  Good luck and have fun entering all the giveaways in the hop!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

That's it, here is the list of all the other fabulous blogs hosting giveaway's in this hop.


Fitness, Running, Life & Plans


FITNESS
I am doing pretty good with my new lifestyle eating changes.  I've lost 12 pounds since I really started working hard on it in June, and 18 pounds total weight loss for the year so far.  I have a ways more I'd like to go and I think at 1-2 pounds a week, that is a fairly good average since its a lifestyle change and not a crash diet.

RUNNING
I had to hold off on starting back running this past week, my hip flexor tear was doing much better, but I just had that feeling and could even feel the injury itself that it wasn't ready.  Instead I began gradually walking again.  1-2 Miles each day last week.  Less and less pain on the uphill each day, telling me the therapy I have been doing the past 2 weeks is working!
I do however plan to gradually resume running this week, it will be gradual probably not more than a mile a day.  Plus a 1-2 mile walk.  I'll let any sign of pain be the indicator on how that will go!

Sometimes even mountains covered in ski trails are beautiful:)


WORK INJURIES
I switched to new running shoes, and one pair is actually my new every day shoe.  It made a drastic difference on both feet and their different injuries.
My guess of my newer right foot injury being Nerve Entrapment, treating it for it at least.  Has proven to be spot on with how it is healing.  In fact I haven't noticed any pain/problems with it in almost 2 weeks now.
The original injury is also healing so fabulously.  I transitioned out of the orthodics the doctors had put me in and the timing was right, I've seen nothing but drastic improvement over the last 3 weeks since I did this.

I mentioned my debate.  Well, this week the 23rd is finally that Dr. Appt with the Specialist again.  I've been waiting over a month for it, but I have no signs of pain or problems.  So I am very tempted to cancel it.
However, if I cancel it, what if the pain comes back....  Well I'm going to think long and hard on this, and I will decide by tomorrow.

LIFE
I've had a fun week, caught up with a good friend over lunch one day.  Spent a little time up in the local canyons.  The pictures shared in this post are from a few of my sights this past week.
Had a great Friday playing with a few of my nieces and nephews, I actually played hide and seek with them for several hours.  I was exhausted by the time the five of them left.




PLANS
Thanks to the economy and the Pinterest bride:(   Summer brides this year around here seemingly are into the DIY backyard weddings, and there is not enough money in those to make it worth my time.
So since business has slowed a little and likely won't pick up too much until September, I have a lot of fun upcoming things planned.
Generally I am an after the fact blogger, for security reasons. But I'll give you a little peak into some of my plans without giving specific dates.

*  I have lots of upcoming camping trips planned (finally).  Which means fresh air and cooler elevation temps.  Ahhh I can't wait!  I hate planning and rarely ever do, but as long as its a short time away, then I guess it's okay to plan a little:)

*  Stand-Up Paddle Boarding - I've been wanting to try this for a few years now, and told my sisters about it and come to find out one of them loves to do it and wants to go with me.  So we are going to rent boards for an upcoming camping trip and do lots of lake paddle boarding!  If I like it as much as I think I will, I might really consider buying one!  I've already called a place and asked how much they'd charge to rent them out for a week and was able to get a pretty good deal!

*  Boating - My sisters and I were talking and we think it would be a fun idea to all go in on buying one of those large rafts to share.  It will be a lot more fun on trips if we can take ourselves and the kids up rafting.

*  I mentioned camping above, but I've also got a lot of hiking and fishing trips planned.  Thank goodness my injuries are fading out because this gal loves to hike!  Frankly I could fish every morning and evening, and hike every afternoon if life allowed!



WINNER
Thank you to everyone who participated both as a blogger hosting a giveaway or an entrant to the Fitness Favorites Giveaway Blog Hop.  Visit the giveaway page HERE.  The winner has been announced, you can check and see if it is you:)

So tell me, what was your past week like.  
Do you have some upcoming plans your looking forward too?

Saturday, July 19, 2014

DIY Projects, Recipes and Modern Pioneering




Disclaimer: I was provided with a complimentary copy of this book by Blogging for Books for my review.  I was not required to write a positive review, all thoughts and opinions below are my own.




I have a different book to review and share with you all today.  It's called Modern Pioneering by Georgia Pellegrini.

Why did I choose this book?  Well the title intrigued me alone, but with as pricey as life is getting, I was looking forward to learning a few tricks of self-sufficiency that I may not have know before that could save me money!

This book was pretty great, it's not one I sat and read cover to cover.  But instead flipped through it, stopping at the different projects of interest using a note card to come back to it when I was ready to give it a try.
I haven't tried everything in the book and probably never will.  But I do have a couple dozen note cards for DIY projects I plan to work on when I have time.

The book has over 100 recipes.  A lot of them, using things in your cupboards, or things in your garden that you may not have thought of using before to cook.

I do love the small space gardening tips in the book, and there are quite a few of these.  Which I highly recommend for anyone who has anything from a larger garden, to a porch or balcony only garden.

There are also lots of DIY projects, using household items to make fun crafts.  Additionally she has what she calls a "Superwoman Skills" section, which was really fun.  In fact I am seriously learning how to pick a lock because of it!

I thought I'd share a few of my favorites of the different types of projects:

Gardening section; which was one of my favorites.  Teaches you what kind of seeds to save so you won't have to buy seeds next year.  The shelf live of many popular seeds.

Tricks for using cardboard in your garden, yup I loved these tips to get rid of weeds for good!
My favorite section in gardening was the Edible Flower section.  Yes, I never realized you could eat flowers.
In fact if you use the correct flowers in certain sections of your garden, you not only won't have to use pesticides because certain flowers keep bugs away.  But those same flowers can serve two purposes, you can actually eat them.  Yes I tried it with a few, and I was pleasantly surprised!



I also loved learning how I could make a potato garden out of a black garbage bag, yes you read that right!  Although I have space in my yard, I was shocked to learn how you can grow a couple dozen potatoes right in a bag on your porch!

The recipe section; there were so many goodies in this section, several of which I tried.
My favorites were the Watermelon salad, pea pancakes, Melon Agua Fresca, Cauliflower Steaks, Ice Cream without an ice cream maker, Apple butter (yum), Sugared Flowers, Flower Lollipops and loved the section on how to eat a rose!  Yes, you read that right, who knew huh!

Like I mentioned above there are over a 100 of them, and they are using things in your garden, everything from weeds to fruits and veggies that you can grow.  The recipes are using things that you already have, so you can improvise and avoid going to the store!

There are recipe's to make all the essentials that you normally would buy in a store, everything from spices to oils.  Tips on how to become as self-sufficient as possible each year with your garden and save yourself lots of money.

A few "Superwoman trick" are also included, I mentioned picking locks above, yes it does teach you that!  I am still working on honing that skill!
But there are also other useful tips, like how to find water and clean it for drinking.  How to turn yourself into a human compass, making fire without matches (yup, so you will do awesome if you ever get on Survivor.)


There is also a weekend warrior section.  DIY projects like making your own cheese, making your own butter (I've tried that one), making your own tea's, sparkling cider's.  Turning your old mason jars into lanterns, chalk paint for you or your kids, how to turn your glass bottles into cute kitchen drinking jars., wreaths and candle making.  Birdhouses to Antiquing this book has lots of fun weekend projects to try as you have time.

If you enjoy cooking, gardening and projects, this is a fun and unique book that you will likely enjoy!  I am really enjoying trying them myself.  I also have been taking notes, so next year when I plant my garden's, I will be able to get much more out of them, and save myself in the long run!


You can CLICK HERE if you'd like more information on this book or to purchase it.
You can also learn more about GEORGIA PELLEGRINI by visiting he Author page.