July/August books

Hey guys ! Idk but this month and last month I’ve read the best books . They either made me cry or laugh or just sigh of happiness lol . I needed the mixture .

The first book will be

The Things We Cannot say By: Kelly Rimmer

This book takes place in two different times . In the 1940s and in modern day . You have Alina and you have Alice . Alina and Alice lives intertwine although years and years have passed . This book is about the Holocaust and some parts are painful but the story was so beautifully written . There were parts were I imagined myself walking with this family . Through hills , through woods to escape the nazis . It’s a story of love of family and triumph even in the face of death . It’s a must read .

Next up is my favorite book ever to date

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill By:Abbi Waxman

Starting off I have to stay that Alli is a brilliant author . Her writing is honest and real and unfiltered. This book is about Nina who’s a beautiful introvert who works in a book store ( she reminded me so much of myself which is why I think I’m so obsessed lol ) She lives alone with her cat Phil and her life has been pretty much like that for a while . But when her dad ( that her mother never really told her about ) passes away,  she finds out that he not only left her something in his will but she has host of siblings nieces and nephews and grand nieces and nephews . Her life is basically turned upside down . What’s great about this book it shows Nina planner . I laughed extremely hard at this book . Some parts hit me when she was experiencing anxiety attacks . Or the fact that she’s a bookworm like me . I fell in love with the characters in this book . I also had to find definitions for some of the words because some of them I never heard of !! Can you believe that ?! But it was a brilliant book and will always be my favorite till this day .

Last but not least is

“The Art of Breaking things” By: Laura Sibson

This book I actually read in 2-3 days . I legit swallowed it lol . It was a heavy book very heavy and it does contain sexual abuse which why it was so heavy . You have this beautiful girl name Skye short for Skylar who was abused by her mother’s boyfriend when she was 12 and she told her mom but her mother was too drunk to even notice . So since then she’s filled herself up with drugs and drinks to fill that emptiness that hollowness to numb it . She also has this beautiful little sister Emma who she wants to protect with her life when her mothers boyfriend dan comes back . This book was a hard read because I felt the pain . I felt the pain when she was creating art through pain . But it was a beautiful novel .

I love this line at the end .

“My mind whispers warnings that I’m still a little broken and that no guy not even Ben can fix me . It’s an inside job . I sense myself falling and tumbling . But this time I’m not ripping down the world with me . This time I’m falling because that’s the only way to test my wings ”

Resilience

Last night I finished this book entitled We are not free By: Traci Chee and this book is not only one of my favorite books but it just moved me to tears . It’s historical fiction based on when Japanese Americans were put into internment camps between 1942-1946 in America .

What upset me most when reading this book was that this was not in my history books in school . I never learnt about this when it is apart of American history . Smh

The book was beautifully written and I felt every pain possible like I legit cried a long cry after reading certain chapters . This book is based on 14 characters and their point of view . They are all really close friends who were all thrown into the camps with their family and the different trials they had to endure . Lost mistreatment torture hunger and separating from each other .

I entitled this blog post resilience because each of these characters showed that . It’s like although beat down they weren’t broken . Or maybe they were but beautifully and strong. I learnt to Gaman a Japanese word to endure and persevere . This was the first book I actually wrote in because some parts were just so powerful .

To keep your head up when people keep pushing it down , that’s just remarkable to me and some of us do it everyday . I just really enjoyed the research that the author went through and the added pictures of the actual camps . I cried so much reading this book but it’s so powerful and it’s something I think everyone should read . So that we all can “gaman ”

Vegan plant/food shops

Two post in one day ? Whatttt lol I wanted to review this really cool spot that recently opened in Brooklyn . It’s called Guevara’s .

I was more intrigued with the plants and the interior of the place . It was so aesthetically pleasing. It was filled with plants and you can actually buy them and they weren’t too expensive either .

What was really nice about this place too was the fact that it wasn’t only vegan food but it has a little grocery in the back with vegan meats butters cream cheese even cookie dough . They have loads of stationary , cards , notebooks, snacks . It was really cool . On the food !

So I got the BEC (bacon egg and cheese on a roll) . It was made with a mung bean egg , and some sort of mushroom as the bacon . I forgot the cheese but it was very good . I would have like the bread to be toasted and the mushroom a lot more crispier but the flavors were there .

We tried the empanadas (guava and cheese , Picadillo ) also a chocolate donut . All of these items are 100% vegan . The guava and cheese had to be my favorite because it reminded me of this little Cuban joint I went to when I worked in the city . It was so delicious . The donut also was pretty tasty but it was very small . I thought the prices were decent but the donuts were just too small . But all in all it was very good . I enjoyed the atmosphere and food ! You should check it out .

Alright peeps . Later ! Be safe , take care of yourself !

Random books that were surprisingly good

Hey peeps ! Hope you guys are doing well and staying safe . From the title I will be reviewing two of my recent books . I started reading some other books before these but they just weren’t good , or went places I didn’t really want to go lol.

Tender at the Bone By:Ruth Reichl

This book was such a pleasant surprise . I actually got it from a free book library across the street from me and I had read a book of Ruth’s before “Garlic and Sapphires ” . That book was so funny to me and it basically talked about her life as a food critic but this book was before her food critic days and what her life was like growing up .

Growing up she had a unstable mom who would just throw in everything in the pot .

“She put the turkey and a half can of mushrooms soup into the pot . Then she began rummaging around in the refrigerator . She found some leftover broccoli and added that . A few carrots went in , and then a half carton of sour cream . In a hurry as usual she added green beans and cranberry sauce . And then somehow, half an apple pie slipped into the dish . ”

Her mom would cook horribly so of course she couldn’t learn from her .

What amazed me most about this book was how she learnt to cook. She learnt from her grandmas helper name Alice . She taught her all types of dishes . And they actually have recipes in the book . How she learnt to cook was intertwine in her growth and the things that impacted her life like when her mom just dropped her off to a French boarding school in Canada for a couple of months . Not knowing the language she knew food and eventually became friends with a girl who was rich and she would go home with her on the weekend where she was introduced into genuine French cuisine .

When she became a teen her parents worked in town while she stayed home alone . She learn to cook and challenge herself . In that time in her life she would have endless parties and get drunk with kids from school . And her mom would just say how nice that you have friends and not lonely .

You come to learn that her mom had two personalities . And was mentally sick .

There are so many experiences Ruth had in her life the countries and eras she’s lived through . This book was just brilliant . I loved every bit of it . She reminded me a lot about myself when it comes to food . I like to challenge myself just because lol . It’s a great book and I recommend it !

Goddess In the Machine By: Lora Beth Johnson

This book was super interesting . I haven’t read a really good sci-fi book in a long time because they start to intertwine magic and spiritism with science fiction . But anyways this book was a about a girl name Andra who wakes up not 100 years but a thousand years later then she was suppose to . She’s in a place she doesn’t recognize . And people are calling her a goddess . In a world where the people think technology is magic , and where andra is considered a goddess when she’s just a mere human . I don’t want to give too much away but it’s a really great book that I enjoyed !

That’s all for my book reviews ! Hope you enjoyed ! Much love to you all .

Baby Skips

Hey peeps ! Hope all is well . This week has been strange but a lot of realizations came into my head and it was overwhelming lol. But this blog post is not about my personal feelings but Baby Skips . It’s a spot that I found through this YouTuber name Roberto and he has great reviews of vegan spots as well as brought food and recipes . So does his girlfriend Vegan Bodega Cat . They are both pretty awesome . But yeah so I was intrigued by the ube waffle . Every Friday me and mom walk wherever for exercise . It’s super important especially with being home all the time .

We took a nice walk there and they were following safety precautions only allowing 5 people at a time and not allowing entrance to anyone who’s not wearing mask .

I got my mom a philly bagel which is a lox bagel with creamy avocado cream cheese and onions . Their bagels are so fresh and my mom really enjoyed her breakfast . Her sandwich was 13 bucks .

I wanted something more savory and they had the ube waffle topped with tofu scramble,beyond sausage , and pickled radish . It was the most interesting thing I’ve ate thus far . What impressed me was that it hit every taste bud . Sweet from the waffle and the syrup , salty and spicy from the sausage and a sourness from the pickled radish. The tofu added a nice texture . It was so delicious and it was $19 bucks . Hefty for the price but I would get it again honestly. And although this was a to go plate it still remained beautiful when I got home .

P.S the waffle is gluten free and vegan

You should def try this place . They have a small menu which I like . They have a host of lattes and coffees and the staff is super chill and kind . I also seen some baked goods in the window and they had vegan options . Also there is nice art outside too .

Hope you are able to check them out ! Baby Skips in Brooklyn . Take care and be well . Much love

-C.P

Pico De Gallo &refried bean burrito

Hey guys . Hope you’re doing well . Lately I’ve been trying to do easy recipes and making things out of whatever I have in the house . So I made this easy pico de Gallo .

I used 4 cherry tomatoes cut into cubes

1/4 of a onion cut into small pieces

A handful of cilantro leaves cut

Half of a like for the juice

Some salt and pepper to taste

Super easy super delicious

Then I just made a burrito with refried beans and vegan cheese . I used canned refried beans and I stored the rest in a mason jar for other recipes . I just wrapped it in a tortilla and placed in buttered pan . Easy and delicious and cost efficient too .

Hope you enjoyed this blog post ! Please stay safe and healthy ! Don’t forget to wear your mask 😷

When You Were Everything

It usually takes me a week to three weeks to finish a book , but this one took me two days. I couldn’t put it down . The realistic ending and the twist and turns of friendship was so identifiable for me . Seeing how both Cleo and Layla morphed into different people and didn’t quite know how to be what each other needed and it backfired with heavy hurtful situations . But to see the growth and the hurt was just so real .

For me I felt like I was okay with saying goodbye to so many friendships that didn’t work out or we no longer could give what the other needed. I’ve said goodbye to some amazing people and I don’t hate them . In fact I still love them . Someone said that this book destroyed me and I thanked it for doing so . I felt the same . There were parts where I teared up because that pain is fresh .

In the book Cleo the main character tries to make new memories with her new friends Sydney and Willa to cover up her old memories with Layla but realized that wasn’t needed . I also wanted to share some of my favorite quotes from this book .

“..I know this is what I failed to do with Layla she changed and I didn’t adapt . Maybe I changed too , and she didn’t try to learn what the new me needed either ”

“She hurt you bad . Let yourself feel it and everything that comes with it ”

“That people change .That love and life are fluid. That even your heroes can make choices that fall into shades of gray .”

“ I smile feeling so grateful for both of them —for Sydney’s sincerity and Willa’s unmerited affection . For the beginnings of our tenuous but gentle friendship . It won’t be a snow globe . It won’t be perfect because nothing real ever is . But it will be ours ”

Ashley did a remarkable job in translating what it’s like to lose a dear friend. I also loved how she incorporated the romance at the end because it wasn’t rushed . This book confirmed something I’ve felt for a long time . That it’s okay to let go of some friendships , it’s okay when they don’t work out . Those moments with that person can still be precious to you . You can still smile at the memories you had together . They can still mean a lot to you . It just made me feel good about where I am and some friendships that I no longer have . The best book that I’ve read honestly in my top five.

“This is my farewell to what we were to each other . I’m finally okay with saying goodbye to her , and this is the best way I know how ”

Easy tofu scramble on a bagel

Morning peeps ! Hope you all are well and healthy . This morning I made a really easy breakfast and super delicious . Tofu scramble on a buttered bagel .

Tofu scramble

I used about 1/4 of extra firm tofu

Sprinkle of black pepper

Some sea salt

Garlic powder

Nutritional yeast

Sprinkle of tumeric powder just for color not for seasoning . But whatever floats your boat .

Put that in a pan with some vegan butter . Let it cook down and all done . I buttered a everything bagel and slapped it on there and had a side of a plumcot . Half plum half apricot . I usually don’t eat crossbreed fruits but these are delicious lol super easy breakfast and delicious !

Have a lovely day guys . Much love

C.P

Last Girls & Daughter of the Reich

Hey peeps ! Hope you been doing well and staying safe . Here are so more books to add to your quarantine list

Last Girls By:Demetra Brodsky

This book was a surprise . I’ve never read a book about doomsday preppers/survivalists . This book is about 3 sisters Honey , Birdie and Blue who are trained survivalist . They live on a secret compound with others who prep as well . This book wasn’t just about that but about sisterhood and so many secrets . I don’t want to spoil it but it was a really amazing book and how things are brought into the light and how these sisters love each other more than anything and would do anything to protect the other .

Daughter of the Reich By: Louise Fein

As you guys already know I have an obsession with the Holocaust and not a weird one I just really admire the strength and the will to live of these human beings . It’s truly remarkable and beautiful . This book was very difficult for me to read because normally you see the Jewish side of things but this book showed how Germans felt at that time and the propaganda they were fed about Jews. Some parts of this book is very unsettling but it’s a really bittersweet kind of book . You have a German girl who’s father is higher up with hitler and she falls in love with her childhood friend who just happens to be Jewish . It shows the heavy issues they face as they sneak around just to love one another . This book doesn’t have a happy ending it has a realistic ending which was tough .

Both of these books were very different but both very brave and filled with courage in the face of danger and persecution . Hope you guys are doing okay and staying safe ! Much love y’all .

C.P

Helium By Rudy Francisco

Hey guys . Hope you guys are doing well . I’m a bit lazy and sleepy today but I just had to share this book review

I been meaning to get Helium for a while since I was looking at Rudy Francisco on Button poetry . Finally I got this beautiful work of art . Rudy’s writing is like a dance with words and that’s what I believe poetry is . I just wanted to share some of my favorite poems from his book .

Alternative to “Bae”

The one who wins all of the arguments ,the keeper of the remote , the girl who turns my stomach into a butterfly nest,the pink starburst, the one I will always choose first no matter what else is in the pack, the red kool aid, the right amount of sugar, the pulp, the part that makes the juice seem real.

Mess

On the day you couldn’t hold yourself together anymore, you called for me, voice cracking like two sets of knuckles before an altercation .

I found you, looking like a damaged wine glass. I hugged your shatter . I cut all of my fingers trying to jigsaw puzzle you back together .

When it was over , you looked at the stains on the carpet and blamed me for making a mess .

Yes

And sometimes it all arrives at once .

The anxiety the fear , the voices that scratch your confidence like a chalkboard and somehow all the oxygen in the room suddenly becomes water . You begin to wonder if you have what it takes to grow gills. You wonder if you can blend in with the fish. You wonder if you will ever breathe again .

And the answer is not every building that shakes will collapse .

The answer is not everything that chips will crumble .

The answer is this is temporary and yes, you will .

There are so many more pieces I enjoyed . I would def recommend this poetry book ! If you guys have anymore poetry recommendations leave them in the comments . Much love to you all

C.P

Trinidadian Doubles

Hey guys ! Hope you guys are doing well . My week has been interesting but still pushing forward and staying as positive as possible lol

I am soooo excited to share this with you guys. My old bible teacher and friend posted this on her YouTube as well as her blog and I just had to make it . It’s not only delicious but vegan friendly . You can find the recipe Here . The only thing I did different was the sauce . I wasn’t able to get tamarind sauce so I made a sweet and and tangy peach sauce which was easy .

Peach sauce Recipe

2 peaches

Like juice (I used 2)

1/4 cup of water

Hot sauce

2 tablespoons of brown sugar

Sprinkle of salt .

You just let all the ingredients simmer on medium heat and it makes a delicious sauce .

I enjoyed the doubles recipe so much and it’s easy ingredients and things you will have in your pantry .