Sesame Ginger Kale and Quinoa Salad

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Okay, y’all, I have another doozy of an amazingly healthy salad. This was delicious. I can’t go into it enough, the entire thing was consumed that night as people came back for seconds and even thirds. It was hearty. I prepared some more food thinking that just a salad wasn’t going to be enough to keep everyone happy, but boy was I wrong. With the quinoa in there, it was a perfect meal in itself – filling without making you feel gross or bloaty. This salad has definitely made the cut into the usual meal rotation.
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Book review Monday

I have two absolutely wonderful YAs I just read. Both of these were great – like, I am envious of people who have yet to read them because I wish I could read them again for the first time.

Warm Bodies, by Isaac Marion

Book description: R is a young man with an existential crisis–he is a zombie. He shuffles through an America destroyed by war, social collapse, and the mindless hunger of his undead comrades, but he craves something more than blood and brains. He can speak just a few grunted syllables, but his inner life is deep, full of wonder and longing. He has no memories, no identity, and no pulse. Just dreams.

After experiencing a teenage boy’s memories while consuming his brain, R makes an unexpected choice that begins a tense, awkward, and strangely sweet relationship with the victim’s human girlfriend. Julie is a burst of vibrant color in the otherwise dreary and gray landscape that R lives in. His decision to protect her will transform not only R, but his fellow Dead, and perhaps their whole lifeless world…
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Banana Muffins

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I’ve been baking more and more types of things I can easily feed a baby. He seems really into cooked vegetables (weird) and also pastries, which I find more understandable. So on top of the salad bits he’s getting, I’m trying to make him healthy muffins. I totally failed in that with these, because these absolutely delicious muffins aren’t the healthiest things ever. But if you saw that thing about him really only liking cooked vegetables, you can follow my thinking that we can get away with a few things like these.
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My first published novel

Well, it’s been years in the making, but I have finally published my first novel, New City. This is such an exciting time for me – basically the realization of a childhood dream. The process was long and a lot of hard work, but I am so proud of what I’ve created here.

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Isn’t the cover art amazing? It was designed by Cathy Helms at Avalon Graphics, and I think she did a stunning job. It is exactly how I imagined it and I can’t wait to see it in print.

Right now, New City is available with Amazon here, or Chapters here. I would absolutely love it if you wanted to check it out.

Here’s the description:

When Evie and her sister Kit decide to leave their deserted northern home for good, they have no idea what they are going to find. Since a deadly Sickness has wiped out the population a year ago, all they do know is they must find some remnants of civilization, or risk another winter alone without food or power.

They head towards a formerly thriving metropolis to discover what is left of humanity. The journey across the deserted country is disturbing, but nothing could prepare them for what they find when they arrive in the city, now known only as New City. Terrified by unknown attackers, they find salvation with mysterious benefactor Lachlan. He gives them a place to stay at the luxurious hotel that serves as a central meeting point in the city.

As her suspicion of Lachlan’s motivations grow, Evie finds herself drawn towards the company of James, a fast-talking criminal who warns her to watch her back. As she discovers the layers of corruption and depravity in the hastily reconstructed society, Evie must decide who is trustworthy in this apocalyptic world.

Book Review Monday

Yeah, okay, I’m totally late, but life has been crazily busy lately and I was out of town. Here’s what I’ve read lately:

The Others, by Thomas Tryon

Book Description: Entranced and terrified, the reader of The Other is swept up in the life of a Connecticut country town in the thirties-and in the fearful mysteries that slowly darken and overwhelm it.

Originally published in 1971, The Other is one of the most influential horror novels ever written. Its impeccable recreation of small-town life and its skillful handling of the theme of personality transference between thirteen-year-old twins led to widespread critical acclaim for the novel, which was successfully filmed from Thomas Tryon’s own screenplay.
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Asparagus Detox Salad

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This incredibly healthy recipe was found on Pop Sugar here. I was looking for recipes that will help for a little last-minute bloat before I go away on a last minute trip, and this came up. Since it is chock full of things that are awesome for you, I decided to go for it. Now, I’ve been open before about my dislike of beets, but I think I’m coming around to them. Especially roasted. This recipe comes highly recommended. Great for vegetarians as well, and Celiacs, because of the quinoa.
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Bourbon-Brownie Petit Fours

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Brownies infused with the rich, decadent tastes of coffee and bourbon. Yum. I’ve been wanting to try to make petit fours ever since I watched Anna Olson make them effortlessly on her show, Sugar (Anna Olson is the best, btw). When I looked at her recipe though, it was a little daunting. And this one that I tried that I found on the Better Homes and Garden website seemed a smidge easier, plus fun with the addition of bourbon.
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