Bon Bons to Yoga Pants The Health and Happiness Society Book 1
by Katie Cross Genre: Chick Lit
Print Length: 266 pages
Publisher: THHS Publishing Publication Date: August 5, 2015
*Winner of the 2015 Watty Awards Best of HQ Love*
Lexie Greene has always had such a pretty face.
Unfortunately, that's where it seemed to stop. She's grown up hearing her Mother constantly remind her that she needs to lose weight. And twenty-two-year-old Lexie knows she's overweight.
With her younger sister's wedding on the horizon and a crush to stalk on Facebook, Lexie's had enough. She gives up her constant daydreams about food and joins a dieting group. As the pounds melt away at the gym, she finds that life on the other side of junk food isn't what she thought.
Bon Bons to Yoga Pants is an inspirational hit about a girl coming to terms with herself, and her past, all while navigating a world of food and fitness.
I Am Girl Power
The Health and Happiness Society Book 2
Print Length: 230 pages
Publisher: THHS Publishing Publication Date: April 20, 2017
Cardiac nurse Megan Bailey has it all. Until she doesn’t.
Thanks to a string of horrible relationships, an unexpected twist in her career, and mounting credit card bills, Megan escapes to Adventura Summer Camp to work as camp chef.
Instead of a relaxing summer in the mountains, she faces a persnickety oven, squirrels in the kitchen, and a host of uncertain staff. With the help of her twin brothers and a quiet, blue-eyed camp ranger named Justin, Megan will have to navigate the treacherous waters of a storm she never expected: her parents possible divorce.
I Am Girl Power is the second book in the quirky new Health and Happiness Society series. Join Megan as she experiences heartbreak, laughter, and the frightening winds of change.
**Kindle countdown deal from Nov 6th – 13th!!** Only .99 cents Nov 6th - 8th Only.$1.99 Nov 9th-11th Only $3.99 Nov 11th - 13th
You'll Never Know The Health and Happiness Society Book 3
Print Length: 322 pages
Publisher: THHS Publishing Publication Date: July 18, 2018
Rachelle Martin is a hot mess.
After losing 110 pounds, she expected to be happily flirting her way through countless dates, not lost as a college dropout. Now that she’s arrived at her ideal weight, why isn’t she happy?
When an injury prevents her from running her dream race, she realize she can’t run from her ghosts anymore. Rachelle must take the one step she’s sworn she’d never take: professional therapy.
Can Rachelle push herself through pain and let go of the past? Or will her demons continue to haunt her one bad decision at a time?
You’ll Never Know is the unforgettable novel in the groundbreaking Health and Happiness Society series. It tackles the false idea of conditional happiness and the exhausting path to self forgiveness.
**Kindle countdown deal from Nov 13th – 20th!!** Only .99 cents Nov 13th - 15th Only.$1.99 Nov 15th-17th Only $3.99 Nov 18th - 20th
Hear Me Roar The Health and Happiness Society Book 4
Print Length: 313 pages
Publisher: THHS Publishing
Publication Date: October 1, 2018
Bitsy Walker is a woman in control.
She eats 1200 calories a day, prepares three rounded meals on a budget, runs her own cleaning business, and never leaves the house with an unmade bed.
When her ex-husband crashes back into her immaculate world, her daughters fall in love with their father all over again. Rumors of joint custody surface, driving Bitsy to the edge of dieting desperation.
Can she handle losing control without giving into binge eating? Or will losing the battle make everything unravel—even her?
Join Bitsy in her journey through calorie counting, the intricacies of self care, and surrendering control in the fourth book in the Health and Happiness Society Series.
**Kindle countdown deal from Nov 20th – 27th!!** Only .99 cents Nov 20th - 22nd Only.$1.99 Nov 23rd-25th Only $3.99 Nov 26th - 27th
What Was Lost The Health and Happiness Society Book 5
Print Length: 295 pages
Publisher: THHS Publishing Publication Date: December 1, 2018
Mira Montgomery is the only one left.
Her brothers unexpected death leaves her tragically alone. No kids. No husband. No family.
Fifty-one years of unrealized dreams crash down on her when a real estate development company threatens the only stability she has left: her store. To make matters worse, her friends in the Health and Happiness Society have more good news than ever before.
Mira is faced with the decision to walk away and start fresh, or stay and fall apart.
Can she survive life without the comfort of her friends? Or will she fall farther into her depression than ever?
Join Mira on her new path through old grief, new loss, and the burning importance of gratitude in the fifth and final book in the Health and Happiness Society series.
**Kindle countdown deal from Nov 27th – Dec 4th!!** Only .99 cents Nov 27th - 29th Only.$1.99 Nov 30th – Dec 2nd Only $3.99 Dec 3th - 4th
Finding Anna A Health and Happiness Society spinoff
Print Length: 177 pages
Publisher: THHS Publishing Publication Date: February 28, 2019
Anna Buchanan is a freshman college student with one plan: travel abroad.
Except . . . college life isn’t what it’s cracked up to be. Her new roommate definitely has a quirky side. All those romantic comedies she watched growing up? Not happening. Money is harder to come by than she thought, and her first kiss is less-than-foot-popping.
Not to mention the fact that there aren’t enough hours in her day to sell blood plasma, work at the deli, and volunteer at her dream internship.
All of Anna’s hard-thought dreams tumble around her ankles when she buries herself too deep in dreams. Then the most terrifying news hits her like a slap in the face.
Can Anna salvage the time and money needed to fulfill her dreams? Or will she have to face the truth: that sometimes our greatest adventures never take us very far away.
Join Anna Buchanan in Finding Anna, a heartwarming novel about odd roommates, unattainable college boys, and the epic quest to find yourself.
A monster lives inside every girl.
Sometimes it’s a big one that drowns out all the others.
Sometimes it’s not.
Sometimes it’s a crowd. Sometimes it’s just one. My biggest monster was a creative beast that craved chocolate and felt good if I drowned her in starch and, on occasion, an overabundance of exercise that cancelled out ALL those calories.
Then she spawned a piece of art I never anticipated.
The Chubby Girl Monster
By twelve years old, I was blatantly imperfect, flawed, and terribly insecure about it—like a lot of humans. So I did what any hormonal, emotional wreck-of-a-tween would do.
I turned to the loving, constant arms of food.
Brownies were a favorite, though I wouldn’t turn down Ben and Jerry’s or mozzarella sticks or any other battered goodness that I could just pop in the oven or microwave. Fistfuls of animal crackers? Perfect snack with a quart of sugary-sweet guava juice from concentrate. Mom cut up carrots and apple slices, but I dipped them in gobs of peanut butter.
Nutrition therapy at it’s finest.
Growing Up Chubby
Being a kid is hard enough, but being an overweight kid is even harder. Combine frizzy hair, an odd obsession with books, and an absent father, and I was a walking monster mine. By third grade, I knew I was a “big girl” because the other kids told me.
That’s when my whispering monster started.
I didn’t really notice the monster at first. I mean, I did. When you’re in fifth grade canvassing a room to see if you’re the biggest kid in there, you know something is different about you. But I didn’t really understand how much power the monster had until the cutting verbosity of seventh grade teenagers shredded holes in the curtain of my denial.
You need to be smaller, the monster would say. Look at how big you are.
I won’t get into details, but suffice it to say that kids and monsters are mean.
Learning to Wog.
Fortunately, I had many friends that loved me in spite of my mongster, one of them being the lean, red-haired, spit-fire Breanna. She invited me to jog with her one day when I was in 8th grade. Because I wanted her to like me and I wanted to be cool and svelte like her, I agreed.
The monster, for once, was quiet.
“Jogging” is an generous term for what I did. (see shuffle and walk.) But it didn’t matter. It was one of the first times that exercise felt good. Breanna didn’t make me feel like the fat kid, and helped me learn how to breathe through side cramps. Silencing the monster felt amazing.
“The world is much more clear after you run,” she pointed out one day. I remember blinking rapidly because she was right. Even my vision had came into sharper focus through the lens of exercise.
After profusely apologizing for being slow, I decided I could do more of this “running” and asked if we could go again the next day.
And the next.
It became our thing together. We’d run in the country by her grandpa’s house. We’d run along the canal. Through the neighborhood. At the cabin. Anywhere. My wog slowly turned into a trot, and then a jog, and eventually I could almost keep up with her on the sprints at the very end.
But never, ever did I beat her.
My monster reminded me all the time.
I’d love to tell you I slimmed down to a lean size 6, started a spinning class, and ate only sprouts and carrot sticks sans peanut butter, but it didn’t happen. Sometimes, my love of exercise cancelled out my greater love of food, but not enough to make me like myself. Or be actually healthy. In fact, I kind of went crazy on both in middle school.
In ninth grade I satisfied the monster and joined a gym. I’d work out for an 60-90 minutes after school. My favorite? Walking 4.0 mph on the treadmill until it maxed out at 100 minutes while reading cheesy romance novels.
Hey, I was exercising, so the monster was quiet. Then I could dream of being a damsel-in-distress. Remember, I was kind of bookish weird?
I went from a size 18 in seventh grade to a size 12-14 sometime in ninth. For the most part, I hung out around there. It was a far cry from the emotionally fragile seventh grader that had been made fun of so much, but my insecure monster still thrived, never satisfied. She chanted to me late at night.
Must get smaller. Must get smaller.
Not even exercise could silence the monster now.
After getting my RN at twenty and working as a pediatric nurse, my obsession with nutrition and exercise became my favorite hobby.
I dove into half marathons, marathons, centuries (100+ mile bike rides), snow shoeing, lots of hiking, and trail running with gusto. Did my weight drop? Nope. I leaned out, could hike like a boss, but the scale never seemed to go anywhere. I counted calories, drank water, avoided pop, and worked my butt off.
Not literally, of course.
Ever run 20 miles and watched the scale maintain? #frustratingas@#$*(!%*(
Must get smaller, sang the monster. You’re still a size 14. Must do more. Must get smaller.
Figuring It Out
Thanks to other issues in my life, I started seeing a professional therapist and learned that food had *gasp* become the way I didn’t cope with my emotions. Truly, I’d never, ever, ever comprehended that food was an emotional escape. It seems to obvious to me now.
Not quite. Because no matter what, the monster reminded me that I still wasn’t smaller. Despite an active lifestyle, the pants size didn’t waver. My health was good, and I felt okay with how I looked. A veritable 3-4 on my self-diagnosed “Hotness Scale”.
Then I met the love of my life at 24 and suddenly my perception of health, self, and food took on a whole new meaning. The mega attractive, sarcastic, intelligent guy I was dating didn’t care that I was still imperfect, insecure, needed therapy, size 14, and loved California Pizza Kitchen to a fault.
He also didn’t know about that niggling monster who insisted you aren’t small enough for him.
Loving the Chubby Inside Me
Meeting my husband and realizing that he didn’t care about me being smaller threw everything I perceived about myself into question. I started realizing that I’m good enough just because I’m me, not because I measure up to some defined quality of beauty established by a magazine.
I’d love to tell you that I banished the ugly monster who controlled me like a puppet, who reminds me that my weight hovers dangerously close to Husband, that a wife should be smaller. I’m still not model size perfect and never plan to be. I still love CPK, and I still battle food cravings and the need to turn to food for comfort on a daily basis.
And I still have a monster inside me.
Write It Out
That monster is why I started writing Bon Bons to Yoga Pants. I knew I couldn’t be the only person to have a chubby girl monster, because there are skinny girl monsters, and straight hair monsters, and knobby knee monsters.
There are monsters for everything.
Lexie Greene is born from that insecure, flawed little girl I told you about at the beginning of the post. Like me, Lexie struggles with weight, she doesn’t want to diet, and when things get tough, she turns to Little Debbie. Lexie and I are not the same person; I love exercise and she tolerates it. She has a sister and I don’t. But we are the same insecure little girl with similar monsters.
We’re all fighting monsters. But that doesn’t mean we fight them alone.
We are perfect just the way we are.
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