This Week’s Book a Week

in Book a Week


I recently realized the secret to super savory mini casseroles is to add a LOT of plain Greek yogurt. It adds so much zing and flavor.  I made these last night and have munched on them as both a dinner and breakfast entrée.


I’m going to double check this recipe to formerly share next week, but here are my eyeball measurements if you want to give it a shot: two cups (measured dry) cooked quinoa, 1.5 cup shredded cheddar, 1/4 cup sautéed onion with two huge handfuls of sautéed spinach in olive oil, two eggs one can white beans (drained), salt, and 1 cup 2% Greek yogurt. Mix it all up and bake in cupcake tins at 375 for 25 minutes under foil and 5 more minutes without.  Makes 12 muffins.  It’s good!


Let’s see… what else is going on in my world of healthy eats?  Oh – Julie from PB Fingers came by yesterday and brought me a vegetarian, gluten-free lasagna.  So awesome.  I can’t wait to dig in later.


And I made zucchini boats stuffed with crushed Rice Chex and cheddar cheese.  It was fun!   Plus, it made me eat zucchini, so that’s good.  Hah.


On the exercise front, I’m continuing with my running game.  Yesterday, I did 2.2 miles before the Husband left for work (my first full day with both kids <—I survived!), and today, I did 3.25 with my friend Brandi, who was nice enough to push Claire in the stroller.

photo (32)

(I can’t wait to share my product review of the new Tre stroller.  I can already tell you that super awesome because it fits my car seat perfectly. Also, the car seat’s canopy and the stroller’s canopy encloses the baby totally so they stay toasty warm!)


Book a Week


This week’s Book a Week was Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand.  First of all, I quickly realized that choosing approximately 500-page books for my Book a Week challenge is not the best idea – I really had to read A LOT to get through this in a week. But I did it, and I’m already appreciating how much the Book a Week challenge motivates me to read instead of doing other mindless things like TV or the phone.


Anyway – this book (which was recently made into a movie) was BRILLANT.  I cannot say enough good things about Unbroken.  It’s the true, very well-researched story of Louie Zamperini, a man who lived many lives – he was an Olympic track star and World War II bombardier who survived a plane crash, shark attacks, 47 days on a life raft with little supplies, and being imprisoned in a Japanese prisoner of war camp for about two and a half years.  I shamefully knew very little about the Pacific Theatre of WWII going into this book, and I am so glad that I read this inspiring book for the education of what really happened to the men who served in the Pacific and what it was like to be a Japanese POW.  This book is incredibly important in that aspect, and I think it should be taught in every high school.


But really – Unbroken is just an inspiring tale. Not just because of what Louie endured (well beyond what most people could even imagine), but how he emerges “redeemed” and forgiving.  I cried several times while reading the book, which says a lot because I never cry at books. 


My review: 5 out of 5 stars.  Best book I’ve read in a long time.



  • Angie January 14, 2015, 12:23 pm

    Unbroken is one of my favorite books of all time, and I read A LOT. It is a truly amazing story and so beautifully written. I cried several times when reading it, also. I had my 14 year old son read it (I wanted him to be inspired), and he spent a full day reading it and finished it in a day!

    The author Laura Hillenbrand is pretty amazing, too. She has been housebound for years because of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and she does all her research from home. She even had someone bring WWII-era weapons to her house so that she could see them in person.

    • Caitlin January 14, 2015, 12:35 pm

      Impressed with your son’s speed!!

  • Alex @ True Femme January 14, 2015, 12:32 pm

    1) I want to try the mini casseroles! I can’t wait for the recipe!
    2) That zucchini looks really good!
    3) Unbroken sounds like a really amazing book about an amazing guy! And I’m impressed by your book a week challenge!
    Have a great one!

  • Liz January 14, 2015, 12:38 pm

    If you liked reading about WWII, I would HIGHLY recommend watching the mini-series The Pacific and also Band of Brothers if you have never seen them! They are both so well done and fascinating and I learned a ton about the events in the Pacific and in Europe during WWII. Plus the music in them is really, really good 🙂

  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats January 14, 2015, 12:50 pm

    at first I thought this “book a week” thing was too ambitious, but the idea that I’d be reading rather than watching TV is sounding better and better – I might have to give this a try!

  • Katie January 14, 2015, 12:51 pm

    I don’ t mean to be the stroller/mom police here, but I have that stroller and the manual says WALK ONLY with the carseat in it, as well as continue to WALK ONLY until the child is 12 months old when jogging is permitted. I know everyone will make their own decisions about this but I think it’s false advertising for the stroller if you make a statement saying it can be used for jogging with the carseat.

    • Caitlin January 14, 2015, 1:02 pm

      I think the manual says you can run with her in the car seat, actually, but I’ll double check to be safe (and edit the post if necessary!). I read it last night but I was pretty sleepy. 🙂 Thanks for letting me know. Don’t wanna be unsafe!

      • Caitlin January 14, 2015, 1:20 pm

        ok – i grabbed the manual. it is written so confusing! you are right – they say that for jogging, children should be a year, but newborns can walk in the stroller in the carseat and be walked while sitting in the stroller at 6 months. and you can’t run with a kid in it until one year. so that’s the “official statement,” and i don’t want to make claims for the product that aren’t true, so i edited the post. thanks!

        but…personally, henry’s doc cleared him to sit in a jogging stroller and be ran at 5 months. and since i currently ‘run’ at basically a 13 minute pace (AKA glorified walking), I think Claire is probably perfectly fine in her carseat on a flat surface like a road. not like i’m doing a 7-minute mile on a rocky trail! i will call our ped and double check though. however, again, thanks for letting me know what the product itself recommends. i appreciate it!

        • Grace January 14, 2015, 1:38 pm

          The issue with jogging with a baby in a carseat that is attached to a jogging stroller ISN’T about the risk of injury to young babies associated with jogging (though I’m really surprised that your pediatrician gave you the OK at 5 months, I believe the AAP doesn’t recommend jogging with any child even in a jogging stroller until between 8 months and a year), it’s about the higher center of gravity due to the car seat. If the stroller was to tip over with the car seat attached it could result in injury or death. Remember, car seats are only designed to be used for safety purposes while properly attached within a motor vehicle. You hear stories every year of babies seriously injured or killed when the car seat was propped on (or even snapped into) the top of a shopping cart (even if the baby was properly latched into the car seat). It’s the same thing with car seats attached into a jogging stroller. Even a slow 13 minute mile run is much, much faster and less stable than walking, and if you were to hit a bump or uneven spot and stroller tipped to the side, it’s not designed at all to protect Claire and could easily cause a serious head injury.

          • Amanda K. January 16, 2015, 1:15 pm

            caitlin — i know making decisions like this is really hard and personal.
            my pediatrician also gave me the go-ahead to jog when my son was 8-weeks old. she said to use good judgement, never go too fast or on difficult terrain. i’m a slow runner, and i stuck to safe areas. my husband runs a 6:30 mile, and he waited until the kids were 12+ months.
            and a 13-ish minute mile is totally the same as a fast walk.

  • Ellen January 14, 2015, 1:05 pm

    Love Unbroken!!! I havent seen the movie yet but will soon. If you want a good book to read that will make you cry read Posion Wood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver….its hefty so it might take more then a week to read but sooo good!!! So…question…can you do a short post about how Henry is adjusting to Claire? Im due in 9 weeks with #2 and my boy is a mama’s boy! I am a bit nervous/excited to see how he does as a big brother ohh and he is the same age as Henry.

    • Caitlin January 14, 2015, 1:21 pm

      sure, ill pencil it in for next week!

  • Rebecca @ Strength and Sunshine January 14, 2015, 1:10 pm

    That has been on my to-read list!

  • Rachel Starr January 14, 2015, 1:27 pm

    My husband was gifted “Unbroken” way back in 2012, but neither one of us read it. I just pulled it off the shelf and will dig in tonight 🙂

    Do you not like zucchini? I’m shocked! Zucchini is one vegetable I actually love. I sautee it in olive oil with my own blend of Greek seasoning, then toss in some feta cheese. So yum!

    • Caitlin January 14, 2015, 1:29 pm

      I like it but its like one of those meh things that I’m rarely excited about. hah. your way sounds good!

  • Cassie January 14, 2015, 2:22 pm

    I LOVED this book!

  • Stephanie @ Whole Health Dork January 14, 2015, 3:02 pm

    Those breakfast casseroles sound delicious! I’ll have to try them.
    I loved Unbroken. One of the better books I had read in a long time. I’m pretty sure I read most of the book with my mouth wide open, aghast. I couldn’t believe everything he went through.
    What’s next on the list?

  • Robyn January 14, 2015, 3:15 pm

    I’m so excited to see you using the Chicco Tre. We just registered for ours for our first child who is due in a couple months. When Henry is in the Tre, do his feet hit the wheel? It doesn’t have as big of a foot rest as other brands, but I love that the seat can come out and basically be a click and go for the first months! can’t wait to run with it next summer!

    • Caitlin January 14, 2015, 3:39 pm

      I’m going to try it out with Henry soon but need my husband home to watch Claire 🙂 I’ll let you know!!

  • Shannon January 14, 2015, 3:30 pm

    Hi Caitlin,

    I’m going this weekend to get the first book you read, A House in the Sky, I think?

    I just finished Wild by Laura Strayed (it was made into a movie too which I haven’t seen yet) which was wonderful and inspiring and a reasonably easy read. In case you are looking for suggestions. 🙂

  • lynne January 14, 2015, 3:45 pm

    Wow, I am super impressed that you got through that dense book in one week. How do you find the time to read with a toddler and a new baby? I am an avid reader with plenty of time of my hands but I could not have gotten through it that fast!

    • Caitlin January 14, 2015, 4:08 pm

      Mostly at night when both kids are sleep. I do about two hours of reading a night.

  • Abigail January 14, 2015, 4:47 pm

    I loved Unbroken! I’m not usually too enthusiastic about nonfiction but Hillenbrand’s writing kept me turning the pages. I’m a teen librarian and I recommend it to any kid who shows the slightest interest in history when looking for a book…no bad reviews yet!

  • Brittany January 14, 2015, 5:46 pm

    I had the very same experience after reading Unbroken. I was ashamed to know so very little about the Pacific conflict during WW2. This was the best book I read in 2014.

    Life changing really.

  • Kim January 14, 2015, 9:20 pm

    I just found your blog through pbfingers today! First visit, love it. I’d love to see a link to all the books you’re reading in the book-a-week challenge, it would be great to just click on a hyperlink of “book-a-week” every time you mention it to see your list and to get ideas!


  • Jennifer January 14, 2015, 11:56 pm

    Unbroken was incredible. Have you read Seabiscuit? Laura Hillenbrand can make anything fascinating…I don’t even care about horse racing but I couldn’t think about anything but getting back to the book while I was reading it. I highly recommend it!!

  • Sarah F. January 15, 2015, 3:43 am

    I love your book challenge for the year- if only because I have really been struggling to find books that I want to read recently, so these reviews give me suggestions! This book has interested me for awhile, so I think it will be the next one I check out.

    Thanks again 🙂

  • Michelle January 15, 2015, 7:56 am

    I can’t wait for the recipe for those mini casseroles! They look fantastic 😀

  • Kate January 15, 2015, 8:01 am

    I’m curious, is running with such a newborn safe?? I have a bunch of friends that were told they had to wait until 5 or so months to a year. Such different information but I was a little surprised to see Clarie running with you even earlier, especially with the temperatures chilly. It didn’t seem to me that those strollers with the car seat snap ins at that sturdy like the intended jogging strollers.

    • Caitlin January 15, 2015, 9:17 am

      I guess opinions and recs on this differ but it seemed sturdy, controlled and warm to me. I would never do anything with either of my kids that I thought was unsafe. To each their own!

  • Emily January 15, 2015, 10:46 am

    Wow, I’m reading the same book. It’s such a powerful story and a good reminder of what those men sacrificed for our freedom.

  • Courtney! @ Redefining Athlete January 15, 2015, 11:05 am

    I loved Unbroken so much. And I loved it even more after reading more about Laura Hillenbrand. She suffers from chronic fatigue syndrome and vertigo, but it is almost because of her illnesses and not in spite of that create the incredible depth and attention to detail in her books. You HAVE to read this fantastic article about her (it is long though, so you might be able to count this article as your week #3 book) 🙂

  • Christina January 15, 2015, 6:13 pm

    I love the posts about the books you’ve read. I’m always looking for new books to read and I never would have thought to read Unbroken but I will now!
    Maybe for super-long books, you can give yourself 2 weeks? I’d hate to miss out vicariously on long books. 🙂

  • Amanda K. January 16, 2015, 1:18 pm

    OMG unbroken is SO GOOD. i also read it when i read 52 books a year ( and i quickly realized that i needed to look for books that were shorter if i was going to make my goal!
    when i was doing it, the first thing i would do is open the book, see how many pages it had, and divide by seven so i knew how many pages i’d have to read a day. hahaha. hope your goal doesn’t get quite so stressful 😉

  • Kate January 18, 2015, 7:42 pm

    I’ve heard incredible things about Unbroken, but not sure if I’m up for a really heavy book right now. Although, I am reading The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult, which involves the Holocaust, so I guess I really can’t talk when it comes to heavy books… Anywho, I was inspired by your book a week challenge, and to keep myself accountable, I started a blog where I will review the books I read. I’ve been wanting to start a blog for awhile, I just didn’t know what to write about until now. Stop by if you’re interested. I’m a big fan of your blog!

  • robyn April 7, 2015, 11:58 am

    Did you ever post a full review of the tre? I can’t find it.


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