Book Review (Round #1)

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If you knew me before college, than you’ll know that much of my elementary/middle school/high school days were filled with reading. My dream summer days consisted of walking to the library, grabbing 6 or 7 books, and spending the next 2 days doing nothing but reading them.

Yet in the hustle and bustle of college my love of reading got lost and I forgot the joy that a good book could bring me. Fortunately not all that is lost can’t be found, and after years of avoiding libraries (sorry!) I walked into the public library and got myself a library card.

And you know what they say? Having fun isn’t hard with a library card! In fact, I actually decided to get rid of the wifi in my apartment to spend more time reading and be more intentional with my time (blog post on that coming soon!)

So, here are a few quick reviews of some of my favorite reads this summer!

1. BIG MAGIC by Elizabeth Gilbert

I absolutely LOVED this book! If you have a creative spirit at all (reader, writer, musician artist, etc) then this is a must read! I’m a big fan of Elizabeth Gilbert’s work already, but I think this is her best work. She’s passionate about creativity, and finding your creativity, and that really shined through the book.

2. TRULY, MADLY, GUILTY by Liane Moriarty

While this does start slow it becomes an absolute page turner. Once the storyline picked up I couldn’t put the book down! Moriarty writes stories like a spider weaves a web: randomly and all over the place at first but quickly it becomes an intricate design. Like most of her work there are a lot of characters to keep track of but they all are very human and I think that makes her work shine.

3. THE CASUAL VACANCY by J.K. Rowling

As a die-hard Harry Potter fan, I wouldn’t be true to myself if I didn’t read this book. This is definitely a totally different J.K Rowling but it was awesome! Like Truly, Madly, Guilty the book starts slow as you learn all the characters. I sort of wish I had drawn a character map just to help myself keep track at the beginning. However, around the time you feel comfortable with “who is who” the plot thickens and JK’s writing truly shines.

4. THE VACATIONERS by Emma Straub

This book was a fun vacation read while I was in Sioux City visiting my boyfriend, James. It’s light and humorous, though it does touch on some more dramatic themes. Not all of the characters were likeable, but it also was a reminder that we all are the antagonist in a chapter of someone’s story. Just because you do something wrong to one person doesn’t mean there’s nothing good in you, and I think these characters showed that.

5. ROOMS by Lauren Olivery

This book is a way different read than the other four, and ended up being a bit disappointing. It started with a strong Toni Morrison magical-surrealism feel but just couldn’t keep the quality up. It was a good read, though some of the full circle moments felt like they were trying too hard. Ultimately it’s still a good read, it just didn’t finish as well as it started.

Have any good book suggestions? Leave them in the comments!

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‘Errbody Poops

Everybody poops butt no one wants to talk about it. I’ve often been told that I don’t have a filter, so let’s talk business.

Pooping isn’t just that embarrassing thing you do in the unisex bathroom at work, it’s a visual indicator of your body’s overall health. Think of it as your body’s morning newspaper and take the time to read the headlines daily. The shape, size, color and texture (yes, I said texture) can tell you a lot about what’s going on inside of you.

Wait, I have to look at my poop?

Yes! If it’s too hard, too soft, or weird colored there could be something going on. The sense of urgency you feel when you have to go and the difficulty of going are also super important, though.

How often should I go?

Well, everyone has their own normal. Some people go every day (which is the goal), while some people only go 2 or 3 times a week (and are then full of sadness and poop). What’s most important is that it’s not too solid, not too runny, but just right.

What happens when the Browns don’t want to go the Super Bowl?

That’s when we bust out the handy, dandy Bristol Stool chart. That’s right. Someone sat down and made a diagram of poop. And you were thinking I was the weird one…although I am about to explain a poop diagram, so you’ve got a fair point. Alright Cosby kids, let’s go to the pool.

 

These types are signs of being constipated. With Type 1, those little nuggets have been chilling in you for a while and aren’t easy to pass. If you’re dropping these milk duds you are probably backed up. Try drinking more water or upping your intake of fruits and veggies. If the struggle is still real, bust out the big guns and get a bottle of Regular, $27. You can use it daily, and if this is a constant issue you may want to consider taking it once or twice a week.

So, what’s normal?

 

These are your normal range! Type 4 is considered the perfect #2, however you shouldn’t be concerned if you’re dropping threes. If neither of these happens too often you should definitely take a daily probiotic (I totally do!). It takes care of that good gut bacteria and keeps you moving. My two favorites are Align, $37 and the It Works! Probiotic, $31,

Going too much?

 

There is such a thing! If you’re experiencing either of these you may have diarrhea and will need to be drinking more water and replacing the minerals you’re losing. If you want to skip past the sugars in Gatorade, grab some actual fruit juice (read the labels AKA not Juicy Juice) or put some Greens into your water. I’m a big fan of the berry Greens on the Go, $35, because they’re super convenient and taste yummy. They are also available in bulk containers.

I hope this was as informative for you to read as it was fun for me to write! All pricing on It Works products are with my discount, which I am happy to extend to you. Just reach out to me and I’ll get you pooping again 😉

Sources for my fun facts and pictures:

http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/ss/slideshow-poop-type-color

http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/treat-constipation#1