Wow! We’re over a year out!


And things are going great. Is one of my breasts still slightly smaller than the other . . . yes. But, whatever. Apparently every girl has misshapened boobs.

My scaring looks great. I have been able to really get after it healthy wise and have lost quite a few pounds since my surgery. I feel amazing. I’m able to run, jump, dance, etc with zero problems. I can comfortably wear a strapless bra and sun dress with no problem. I don’t have to buy my shirts three sizes too big anymore. All in all it’s AMAZING.

Over the past year, I’ve gotten a few comments here and there on this blog but have been so busy, I wasn’t able to come back. So please — You are WELCOME to add me on facebook and I would LOVE to chat with you about your upcoming surgeries . . . post surgeries . . . or whatever!

 

You can find me at: facebook.com/rachel.p.allen 

 

I look forward to hearing from you all!

Day 4 – Out and About


Today was the first day I was more out and about. Besides taking some pain reliever right before going to bed tonight, I was good for the day. I went and picked up a few more sports bras because I needed to wash the surgical one as it got some blood on it. It was extremely weird picking out bras in the “medium” section. 

Even now, looking at them, they look like some old training bras or something. I’m excited about all the new bras. But, these sports bras make me feel like a guy. Plus, I just really need to get my stomach under control. I can’t wait to be approved for workouts. 

I’ve been eating smaller portions and things like that . . . but the exercise is really going to put it over the edge. 

I want to like them. I want to enjoy them. I know it’s going to take time. I just wish I could fast forward a little bit. 

The Maze Runner — Cool Premise, Writing Could be Better


After reading some great young adult distopian literature over the past few years, I looked forward to another series entitled The Maze Runner series by James Dashner. So, I uploaded it to the kindle and got to work. And work it was. It took almost a month for me to get through this novel.

The premise, a group of boys trapped in a created civilization spend their days running what appears to be an unsolvable maze and their nights making sure that the horrible creatures that roam at night stay in the maze where they belong. But, when a girl shows up, the Gladers soon realize that things are about to change, is an excellent idea. However, the execution left me wanting far more.

The author struggles with moving the story along. There is a lot of fluff involved, including some annoying made up slang. Also, the novel is extremely predictable. At each “hint” that furthers the story, I’d figure out where the author was going . . . and yet the author wouldn’t reveal his lacking plot points until far later and by that time I was rather bored with the story.

I have started the second novel, The Scorcher Trials, in hopes that the writing gets better. I will definitely keep you posted on that front. I’ve heard a lot of good things about this series, so maybe his writing just isn’t for me, but other people will just love it. (Kind of like my feelings towards Shades of Grey even though everyone else seems to enjoy it??) So, don’t let this review stop you from checking it out if the premise sounds good. I just wish that Dashner would have went in a little deeper, made me think a little more. The idea is there! It’s great! But the execution is what lacks.

Celeste and Jesse Forever


If you’re planning a fun date night with your significant other or a girl’s night out, I strongly suggest checking out Celeste and Jesse Forever before it heads out of theaters.

Celeste and Jesse Forever is a wonderful movie about a couple that is perfect for each other — except for the fact that they’re getting divorced. No worries, I didn’t spoil anything for you as this is all set up in the opening credits.

Rashida Jones and Andy Samberg are great as the title characters. This was one of the first movies that Samberg has been in as a lead role, and I think he really showed his acting ability and did a great job. It wasn’t all quirky stories and songs. He had depth and character and really knows how to pull at your emotions.

The movie is a little over an hour and a half, but I never felt myself getting bored or felt like the movie dragged at all. It was all in all a great film and I recommend it to anyone. It’s definitely not the “normal” romantic comedy.

It’s far too smart for that label or genre.

 

The Fault of Our Stars — Best Book I’ve Read So Far This Year


I adore when Jen Lancaster comes out with a new lists of books to check out. Some people get annoyed . . . that she is simply promoting people from her publishing company, or simply promoting her friend’s works. Whatever. I don’t think she has an ulterior motives and instead think that she actually does LOVE these books, so much so, that she wants everyone else to love them too.

On a recent blog post, Lancaster talked about John Green’s fourth novel The Fault of Our Stars. A few things caught my attention: A) It was a young adult novel (which I love reading) and B) She mentioned the characters were so well written that I just had to see for myself. And I’m so very glad I did.

The Fault of Our Stars allows Hazel, a sixteen year old terminal cancer patient, tell the best story about living while dying I’ve ever read. As most young adult novels about sixteen year olds are, this novel is about love. It’s about love and living in a world that can be so hard to understand. And Green really gets a lot of it right. He really allows the reader to understand the feelings that Hazel deals with as she struggles with death and life and ultimately love. His writing sums up everything that I have felt about death. It gives me comfort in a way that has never really been felt before and I urge you all to pick this book up. You’ll finish it in a day and hopefully you’ll love it as much as I have.

Gone Girl — Pick This up NOW!


I’m honestly not sure where I got this novel from. I don’t know if I picked it up after checking out the NYT Bestsellers or if I just stumbled across the cover at Target, but it’s been on my kindle for a while now. I finally picked it up earlier this week. I will say, it took just a bit to get into it, but once I did I couldn’t put it down.

Gillian Flynn’s Gone Girl is mystery/suspense novel that tells the tale of Amazing Amy Dunne, writer, devoted wife, and leading lady of the children’s novels “Amazing Amy” who goes missing on her five year anniversary. Naturally, her husband Nick, becomes a lead suspect but things aren’t always what they seem and there are plenty of surprises to go around.

This novel is written in a “He said/she said” type of forum which makes it very entertaining and as you round the half way point, Flynn reels you in for an edge of your seat shocker.

Pick this book up and I doubt you’ll be sorry.

**Note: There is some graphic language . . . so if you get all butt hurt about stuff like that, go ahead and avoid this one**

Divergent – Another Great Dystopian Tale


First things first, I need to apologize. I haven’t blogged in quite some time and most of that is due to having a baby. But, no worries, I have still been reading as much as I can and have a lot of new novels to share with you. First up on the list: Divergent by Veronica Roth. Roth creates another dystopian world that is easy to fall into. After the world collapses on itself, the survivors create five factions in the hopes that each faction will live in harmony with the other. The factions are Amity (for those that felt that the previous world ended because their wasn’t enough happiness), Candor (for those that felt that dishonesty caused the previous world to fail), Erudite (that believed that a lack of knowledge caused the downfall of civilization), Dauntless (who was certain that it was cowardice that caused their world to collapse) and finally Abnegation (that felt pride and selfishness was the problem with the previous world.)

 

In this dystopian land, a person grows up in the faction they are born in, but at the age of sixteen they are given a test simulation that reveals the real faction they should be in. It is then that the teenager can decide to stay with the faction they were born in, or move into the faction that they had aptitude for in regards to the simulation.
Divergent tells the tale of Beatrice (Tris), a born Abnegation that finds out in her test simulation that she is different than the rest. Instead of just getting one faction option, Beatrice finds herself having aptitude for three: Abnegation, Dauntless, and Erudite. Having a mind that has aptitude for more than one faction is called Divergent and can be considered very dangerous if the wrong people realize that their brains work in that manner.
Tris ultimately chooses Divergent and struggles to pull herself from the “stiff” roots of her previous faction and find friends and companionship in her new Dauntless faction. But after a grueling initiation process, before she is officially welcomed into the Dauntless world a simulation causes anyone who is not Divergent to blindly wipe out nearly an entire faction and suddenly Tris finds herself in the most dangerous obstacle she has faced yet.
I really got into this novel pretty fast. I think it had a lot to do with my love for Dystopian fiction or maybe it was my want to find another book that would give me the same feeling that The Hunger Games did while reading. Whatever it was, I flew through this in no time and definitely recommend it to anyone that enjoys that type of plot and setting. This is actually Roth’s first novel and she does a superb job of building characters that you want to fight for, which is always a plus in my book. I definitely recommend this novel and it’s sequel Insurgent. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.