[january 2014]

because what I’m into posts are things that I do! even three days late! because I forget about them! oops.

January was cool. I still can’t believe that just a month ago I was at home celebrating the new year by playing Tripoley and eating chex mix with my grandparents (that’s right, I party hard) and now where I am fully into a new (and final) semester. what even is time.

with that eloquent thought, let’s talk about January. stuff happened. I think.

reading (book-wise)

  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone and Days of Blood and Starlight, Laini Taylor. look! a YA series that isn’t dystopian! it’s a miracle. these are a really fun and engaging read about the fighting between chimerae and angels. and there’s a chick named Karou with blue hair.
  • Clash of Kings and A Storm of Swords, George R. R. Martin. because I’m doing a GoT-reread.
  • The Graveyard Book, Neil Gaiman. guys, I have discovered that I love Neil Gaiman. The Graveyard Book is such a weird, funny, interesting read. I’m reading American Gods right now and this guy can write. which everyone knows.
  • Mastering the Art of French Eating, by Ann Mah. this book wins the category of books that make me want to jump on a plane and fly to Paris and eat all the food (again).
  • Bossypants, Tina Fey. I love Tina Fey and her memoir is such a funny, witty, clever, fun read.
  • Selected Poems of Rainer Maria Rilke, Rainer Maria Rilke/Robert Bly. I texted a friend saying “COME TO THE LIBRARY AND READ ME GERMAN POETRY” because I wanted to hear it in the original language. so basically, yes.
  • also: reading Morte D’Arthur (Sir Thomas Malory) for one of my classes and spending most of my time yelling “ARTHUR WHAT EVEN ARE YOU DOING”. I mean. please tell me you understand.

I’m doing this Goodreads-2014-challenge-thing and challenged myself to read 104 books this year. Goodreads is currently informing me I’m behind, but I think the GoT books should count for two each. those things are thick.

reading (blog-wise)

okay, I’ve been totally shirking on my blog reading/blog collecting. again. always. I read some good stuff – I know I did – but totally didn’t save links. maybe next month I’ll have stuff for here. no promises.

listening

The Oh Hello’s. on repeat. endlessly. all day. everyday. plus a little Beta Radio and Gavin Degraw and American Authors.

watching

  • Parks and Rec. maybe cried when we said goodbye to Ann and Chris. okay, definitely cried.
  • Elementary. seriously guys, so good.
  • also SHERLOCK. was a thing. and I have mixed feelings. drunk John and Sherlock make it almost all worth it.
  • AOJE. STUFF HAPPENED and FEELS.
  • also, super pumped for Shipwrecked’s Kissing in the Rain. like, super pumped. A Tell Tale Vlog is the greatest. Socially Awkward Poe: all the yes.

eating

my roommate and I are doing a whole30-inspired paleo30. so basically, eating a bunch of meat. and sweet potatoes. yum.

loving

  • all of my classes. they’re fantastic, and awesome, and the best.
  • being back in North Carolina.
  • getting more involved at my church.
  • sweet potatoes. can’t stop won’t stop.
  • tea. lots of tea.
  • a snow day. which of course necessitated a snow angel.
  • dancing. a lot. in a lot of things.
  • scribbling words in journals.
  • women that believe in my roar.

as usual, linking up with Leigh Kramer. so tell me, what did you love in January? also, what should go onto my 2014 reading list? hit me up, yo.

 

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[december 2013]

Let’s be honest: this month has mostly looked like my bed, netflix, and cookies.

No shame.

Maybe a little bit of shame.

reading (book-wise)

  • The Book Thief, Markus Zusak. I finally finished this. I cried. It’s cool.
  • Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte. This was an AOJE-inspired re-read, as it’s been years. Um, this book is weird. I forgot how weird this book is. But still good.
  • Ready Player One, Ernest Cline. This was a re-read for me and still tons of fun – a sci-fi novel about an Easter Egg hunt in massive multi-player reality game. I think I would have appreciated it a lot more if I had lived through the 80’s, though.
  • Divergent, Insurgent, Allegiant, Veronica Roth. I just felt like re-reading the series. Still cried.
  • The Scorpio Races, Maggie Stiefvater. I’d read her Shiver and Linger books in high school and wasn’t super impressive (werewolves. you know.) so I’d been avoiding anything else Stiefvater, but my aunt lent me The Scorpio Races. She’s a high school librarian who understands my undying love for YA fiction, so I took her advice and this book, guys. I love it. It’s got a fantastic heroine, a cute boy, a love story (but it’s not a love-story-book), and fantastic prose. Easily one of my new favorites.
  • The Greatest Gift, Ann Voskamp. This year, I actually did an Advent devotional (okay, maybe skipped a few days) and really enjoyed reading this.
  • Game of Thrones, George R. R. Martin. What can I say? I’ve been really into the re-reads this month. Working on the second one now.

Also, my new year’s resolution is to actually use my Goodreads account (aiming high!) so you can find me over there if you want.

reading (blog-wise)

As we learned last month…when I’m not really writing blogs, turns out I’m not really reading blogs, either. This section will be back next month. Hopefully.

listening

it’s mostly been this playlist I made for a more love letters writing party. Also, Sufjan Stevens’ Christmas  music, because yes.

I went to Andrew Peterson’s Behold the Lamb of God tour, and dang. The concert tells the story of Jesus – from Old Testament to New – and also, Ellie Holcomb is insanely talented and adorable. They were all insanely talented, actually. If it’s coming to your city next year, go.

watching

  • newly addicted to Firefly. I’ve got a few episodes left and am already mourning the end.
  • Doctor Who! everybody say hello to Twelve. We’ll see how I feel about him later. So far – based on his, like, two lines – I like him.
  • Autobiography of Jane Eyre because it just keeps getting better.

eating

  • okay. Joy the Baker’s ginger chewies + the frosting from this  make the world’s best whoopie pies. They’re addicting. Don’t say I didn’t warn you. I’ve made them three times now. yes. three.
  • the traditional Christmas morning breakfast of monkey bread and orange cinnamon rolls. and, of course: bacon.
  • all the cookies. ALL. THE. COOKIES.

loving

  • a little bit of snow, a little bit of oddly-warm weather. December can’t make up her mind this year, but it’s not so bad.
  • hanging with the fam bam. aka, tabletop gaming.
  • running my first 5k! no, I didn’t actually run the whole thing. no, I’m not telling you my time because it’s horrible. but as a life-long run-hater, I consider this progress.
  • catching up with high school friends over the break
  • baking cookies. lots of them.
  • knitting.
  • rock climbing with my brothers. things I learned: I have zero grip strength, you use your forearm muscles for a lot of thing and you don’t realize it until it hurts like heck, I’m not a huge fan of heights, and rock climbing is fun.
  • christmas lights.

as per usual, linking up with Leigh Kramer to talk about my December loves. what have you been loving? also – I’m trying something new and making myself a to-read list for next year. what would you put on it?

[november 2013]

So it’s December.

That’s cool.

It’s been quiet around here, very very quiet, because I did a little thing I liked to call #noblogvember in an attempt to recover from the mad sprint that was 31 days. And it’s been nice, but also weird. I gotta get my writing groove back on.

IMG_4204

In any case, let’s talk about everything I did in November while I wasn’t blogging. as we do around here, linking with Leigh Kramer to talk about what I was into.

reading [book-wise]

  • A Million Little Ways, Emily P. Freeman. Finished this and let me say, it is just too good. My first read-through was basically just breezing through so I’m going to re-read, slowly, and probably underline lots of things. If you’re into writing, or art, or life, read it.
  • Committed: A Love Story, Elizabeth Gilbert (aka…the Eat, Pray, Love person). Gilbert discusses the history and traditions of marriage as she comes to terms with her upcoming, Homeland Security-prompted wedding. It’s funny and interesting and thought-provoking.
  • Wild, Cheryl Strayed. Here’s the deal: I have no interest in months-long backpacking journeys. Yes, this book made me want to buy some hiking boots and wander through the wilderness for a while. Strayed’s writing is beautiful and full of heart.
  • Graceling, Kristen Cashore. This is a third or fourth-time reread for me, but I love Cashore’s writing. Easily some of my favorite fantasy novels.
  • in progress: Out of the Silent Planet (C.S. Lewis), Emma (Jane Austen), Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte), The Scorpio Races (Maggie Steifvater), The Book Thief (Markus Zusak and yes I’ve been reading it for like three months now I promise I’ll finish), and the poetry books from last month, because I cannot for the life of me read a single book at once.

reading [blog-wise]

okay, admittedly, #noblogvember kinda turned into #noblogreadingvember. I’m sure I read some good things, but I didn’t save any links, so all I’ve got is this, from Hannah Brencher: don’t miss the bells.

listening

this is my november jams list. does it include two versions of Say Something and two covers of Royals? yup. no shame.

John Mark McMillan and The Civil Wars were my Thanksgiving break road trip music, and they make it so much better than listening to Counting Stars 568 times on the radio. Don’t get me wrong, I love that song, but if I have to hear it again in the next week I might lose it.

and, of course…CHRISTMAS MUSIC IS OUT. IN FULL FORCE. that’s right, even pre-Thanksgiving. I go there.

watching

  • CATCHING FIRE CATCHING FIRE CATCHING FIRE. I mean, it was okay, I guess. (I loved it. It was fantastic. I want to see it again.)
  • the regulars: Elementary, Parks & Rec, Once Upon a Time, Agents of SHIELD, The Voice.
  • also, confession time: totally addicted to Junior MasterChef. oops. it’s great.
  • this twelve-part documentary on New York City Ballet.
  • on the vlog-y side of things, Emma Approved has left me mostly disappointed due to some weirdness with transmedia and lots of weirdness regarding what’s occurring in/out of world, but I still watch it for snarky Knightley. Autobiography of Jane Eyre, just keeps getting more and more perfect and has inspired to do a re-read of Jane Eyre, as it’s been ages since I read it.
  • and of course: Doctor Who! The 50th anniversary special was this month. I enjoyed it and loved seeing some old faces back on the screen, but honestly, I’m getting a little tired of Moffat’s shenanigans.

eating

  • Thanksgiving. duh. lots of pie.
  • made some vanilla lime coconut cookies that turned out great (the ones that I didn’t burn…whoops)
  • other than that, nothing new and exciting. lots of crockpot recipes on repeat.

loving

  • a weekend retreat with my bible study girls where we ate a lot of food, talked about Jesus, collected seashells, and waded in the ocean. in November. yes please.
  • picking up knitting again, and feeling like I’m doing doing something productive when I watch tv.
  • road tripping. okay, this is a love/hate relationship. it’s a 6 hour drive from home to school, and I just did it twice in a week and will be doing it again in another week. learning to love it.
  • decorating our little apartment for Christmas. my roomie and I set up a little tree and made snowflakes for the windows and there have been several nights of tea and Christmas lights in there.
  • catching up with some friends over break. bestie time.
  • end-of-the-semester performances! I stage managed a concert and then smeared blue face mask all over my clothes and face to perform in one the next week, so I pretty much lived in the dance theater for 2 weeks. it was fun, but glad it’s over.
  • speaking of that concert, my mom and grandma came down to see me dance. we drove through campus, went to church, and ate yummy food.
photoshootthese ladies. they’re the bomb.

so tell me…what’s on your love list for November?

[october 2013]

The past months seem to have gone by in a blur. October did not. I suspect this has something to do with 31 days, aka the brilliant masochist impulse decision to blog every single day for a month. Now, for the record, let me just state: I am glad I am doing 31 days. I have no regrets. But, also, MUURGGGHHH.

And on that note…let’s talk about what I loved in October.

reading [book-wise]

  • Allegiant, Veronica Roth. So I’m a huge fan of the Divergent series and when the final book of the trilogy came out, obviously I immediately bought it on Kindle and ignored my responsibilities for two days while I read it. And, wow. There were twists that I did NOT see coming, but I love it. I think it’s a perfect conclusion to the story, and Roth made some gusty choices, and I respect any author who does that. (Also, I immediately decided to re-read the whole trilogy, so I read Divergent this month, too. Also in two days.)
  • The Elite, Kiera Cass. I mentioned last month that I enjoyed The Selection and hoped that she was going a little deeper with the second book and was not disappointed. I read The Elite in a day. A DAY. It’s been forever since that happened. I need the third book now, pleaseandthankyou.
  • The Power of Six and The Rise of Nine, Pittacus Lore. Still working my way through the Lorien Legacies series, and still enjoying it very much.
  • The Gifts of Imperfection, Brene Brown. It took me a few months to get all the way through this, but it’s amazing. Such a wise book filled with truth. I want to live wholehearted.
  • in progress: Emma (Jane Austen), Grace for the Good Girl and A Million Little Ways (Emily Freeman), The Book Thief (Marcus Zusak), 19 Varieties of Gazelle (poetry by Naomi Shihab Nye). Yes. I read multiple books at once. It’s a problem.
  • (also I’m trying to get myself to actually use Goodreads sooo you can find me here!)

reading [blog-wise]

listening

my october jams are right here.

mostly, though: Sara Bareilles. all the Sara Bareilles. I’m obsessed with The Blessed Unrest, obviously, and her live album is great.

watching

  • finally caught up on Elementary and this has easily become one of my favorite shows. Also, I want to steal all of Joan Watson’s adorable booties.
  • Dance Academy ended. For good. It was good. I cried.
  • Parks and Rec is back!
  • Once Upon A Time. just. yes.
  • I’m totally hooked on The Voice. Oops. It’s great, and I’m completely and absolutely NOT gifted with the ability to sing, so I’m basically constantly in awe of anyone who can.
  • EMMA APPROVED. IS A THING. If anyone watched the Lizzie Bennet Diaries, you probably already know about Emma Approved. If you don’t, it’s fantastic. The cast is fantastic, I both adore and want to strangle Emma (as it should be), and Knightley is cute. No shame. I was hesitant at first, and there’s some weirdness going on with who the audience is, but it’s mostly won me over.
  • and when it comes to classic-novels-turned-vlogs, Adventures of Jane Eyre is just too good.

eating

  • I improvised some pumpkin chai cookies. Because, you know, all the pumpkin.
  • Also, I took Joy the Baker’s chocolate cookie recipe and fiddled to make some chocolate-almond-coconut cookies that were DELISH. HELLO. I also adapted this into some ginger cardamom shortbread cookies and they were good, but no spectacular. I’m pretty sure shortbread can smell fear.
  • Apple almond cinnamon scones, based on a simple sour cream scone recipe. Yum. Yum. Yum. (Can you tell we have a thing for baked goods?)
  • annd when it comes to real food….this green chile chicken & lime soup is fantastic.

loving

  • the few perfectly-fall days we’ve had. crisp air, blue skies, crunchy leaves. i’m in love.
  • me + my hammock + the park have been having a lot of quality time.
  • 31 days. yes, yes, we were about twelve days in when I started wanting to pull my hair out but it’s been a lot of fun and such a good experience to challenge myself to write every day. although, it basically turned into 31 days of poetry pretty soon on. and a little fiction. apparently that’s something I do now.
  • sweet harvest pumpkin tea. get on it.
  • wearing sweatpants. getting cozy.
  • the adventure that is growing out a buzz cut. my hair has a mind of it’s own, I swear, so this has been interesting. but fun.

As usual, I’m linking up with Leigh Kramer to share what I’ve been into in October. what’s on your love list for this month?

 

[september 2013]

September is over. And for the first time in what feels like forever, I’m not totally caught unawares by it. I’m feeling settled into Greensboro and September has felt like just the right length.

So let’s talk about my September faves.

reading (book-wise)

  • Beautiful Chaos and Beautiful Redemption, Margaret Stohl and Kami Garcia. I finished up the rest of the series early in the month, and to be honest, it feels like forever ago so I’ve kinda forgotten these books. But I did enjoy them – there’s some unexpected twists and they were a fun fantasy read.
  • Partials and Fragments, Dan Wells. These are right up my alley (you know, dystopian YA lit, badass chick, cute boys) and I loved these books. They’re full of twists and surprisingly thought-provoking and I could just not put them down, and now I’m stuck waiting for the third book. Gimme.
  • The Selection, Kiera Cass. This is…uh…also in my YA lit niche. Set in post-something US, America is selected as one of the girls to live at the palace and be a potential mate for the prince. She’s not into it, there’s a boy back home…you know. Think, like, The Hunger Games meets The Bachelor. Honestly, it seemed totally predictable at first but surprised me a bit. Cass hints at some more drama beneath the surface going on with the monarchy/government system and I’m really hoping she delves into that more in the next book, which I’ve got on hold. Again, gimme.
  • Cinderella Ate My Daughter, Peggy Orienstein. Orienstein takes a look at the prevalence of all things pink + princess + stereotypically feminine in our culture and questions how this is affecting our girls (and, like, us). I’m kinda not-so-secretly a raging feminist (though that term is complicated at best) and this whole divide of girl/boy toys/books/activities/careers/etc is incredibly important to think about. This is fascinating, and while I don’t agree with everything Orienstein offers, it’s worth a read.
  • Every Shattered Thing, Elora Ramirez. Right. so. Not really sure how to talk about this book because it’s painful and beautiful and it hurts and sometimes you just want to stop reading but then you don’t, and you’ll probably cry a bit. or a lot. In any case, Elora’s novel talks about a really hard thing (sex slavery in the US) and does it beautifully. Read it.
  • The Fault in Our Stars, John Green. This was a re-read for me and you’d think that knowing what was coming would make it easier, but nope, I still bawled my eyes out like a baby. If you haven’t read this, you want too. They’re filming the movie now and John keeps tweeting pictures from the set and I already have all the feels and they’re not even done with the filming. I mean.
  • waiting on my windowsill: The Gifts of Imperfection (Brene Brown, and it’s beautiful and amazing and hard and true), The Book Thief (Markus Zusak, and I know I’m like the last person in the world to read this but guys so good), Grace for the Good Girl (Emily Freeman), An Introduction to the Old Testament (Walter Brueggemann and I’m only one chapter in but it’s good and also makes my head hurt a bit).

reading (blog-wise)

  • Cassi Clerget’s post for So Worth Loving on speaking kindness to yourself. It’s hard, and important. 
  • 5 Lies Every Twentysomething Needs to Stop Believing and I think I just need to read this on the daily. 
  • Preston Yancey is back to blogging again (yay) and writing some beautiful beautiful things. I’ve been practicing yoga for around a year now and this is so good, and so true.
  • “It is good, I hear Him say, and for the first time in a long time, I feel it.” Bethany Suckrow writes an ode to her body.
  • Kaleigh Somers writes truth and reminds us that are so, so much more than broken.
  • Hilary Sherratt, on being unkind to her body. (Is there a trend here with my posts this month? Let’s practice some self-love, yo.)
  • Antonia Terrazas on remembering your baptism, and living it daily.
  • Last but certainly not least, Hannah Brencher continues to remind me why I fell in love with words in the first place.

listening

this month’s jams are right here. been loving We Don’t Eat by James Vincent McMorrow, and fell in love with Coby Grant after one of her songs was used on Dance Academy.  Little Bastille, little Katy Perry, little Daughter.

I’ve also re-discovered my love for Rachel Platten. I’ve known + loved her music for a while – my old dance teacher back home hosted her house concert a couple summers ago, and then again recently. I was bummed that I wouldn’t be home for it but then learned she’d be playing in Greensboro the very next night. I was totally that loser that went to a concert alone (sorry to everyone who had to endure #hannahlivetweetingherawkwardconcert) and had a great time. I can’t wait for Rachel’s new album to come out – it’s going to be amazing – but for now her music is on repeat. She’s incredibly sweet and talented – she sings, plays the guitar and piano, write or co-writes all her songs…and she beatboxes. She also gives really good hugs and doesn’t judge you if you start crying in front of her. Or so I’ve heard.

and it’s been kinda a tough month, and I’ve been working on my brave, so I made myself a total girl power playlist. it’s kinda short for now, but you can bet it’ll be sticking around and growing up. sing along and dance in your bedroom with me.

watching

  • finally watched Hercules. Disney, yo.
  • re-watched Thor and while it’s still not my fave of the Avengers-tribe films, it’s still pretty good.
  • Dance Academy, duh. As terribly good as always.
  • Bones is back!
  • A little Supernatural, here and there.
  • But mostly…Elementary. Guys, I’m obsessed. I was totally one of those hardcore-dedicated-to-Sherlock-refuses-to-watch-Elementary people but I love it, so much. Joan Watson is probably one of my favorite characters on TV right now – she’s smart, strong, independent, queen of sass, and totally able to handle all of Sherlock’s craziness.

eating

loving

  • HELLO FALL. I’m ready to bust out my scarves and sweaters and there have been some perfectly crisp evenings. It’s beautiful.
  • chocolate chai latte. hello. you can keep your PSL.
  • treated myself to some new tea. chocolate hazelnut – good. the pumpkin spice rooibos my mom mailed me – also delicious.
  • my #fmfparty community. I have received so much support, love, and encouragement from everyone this month and it makes my heart happy.
  • farmer’s market trips. I have had the most beautiful tomatoes + perfect peaches + beautiful fresh flowers in my apartment, and it’s awesome. I bought eggplant this week. I have no idea how to cook eggplant, but it’s just so pretty.
  • I also bought a little aloe plant for my living room, to keep Joey (my spider plant) company. now taking suggestions on names.
  • Romans. my church is doing a sermon series on Romans, so we’re discussing it in community group, and my bible study is doing a Tim Keller study on Romans. all the Romans.
  • beautiful blue skies + gorgeous sunsets. North Carolina, you pretty.
  • short hair don’t care. maybe I’ll just keep my hair this length forever.
  • seeing Maya Angelou speak at my school. I mean, dang. That woman is full of wisdom and strength and wit.
  • raiding my apartment-mate’s closet. Thanks Carolyn. you have cute clothes.
  • all the pumpkin things, duh.
  • self care. because it’s important.

and just for fun, this was the most-viewed post on my blog this month.

that was kinda super long. September’s been a good month, all things considered. as usual, I’m linking up with Leigh Kramer to share what I’m into. so tell me….what’s made September good for you? (and more importantly…pumpkin spice latte or chocolate chai or salted caramel?)

[august 2013]

It’s that time again, folks. The end of the month. And every time this happens I freak out and go “what do you mean, the month is over??”

You’d think that by now I would realize how time works, but nope.

August has been a whirlwind. I came home from Africa, spent a week working at summer camp (aka The Best Job Ever), moved back to North Carolina to start my senior-but-not-really year of college, and am now two weeks into classes. It’s crazy. Also, Rachel Held Evans posted a blog of mine on her facebook page and I stopped breathing. Talk about crazy.

So now…let’s talk about August.

reading (bookish)

  • All the Summer Girls, Meg Donohue. I loved How to Eat a Cupcake so I decided to give this a try and really enjoyed it. It’s about three friends and the summer their friendship crumbled.
  • Every Day, David Levithan, about a person who wakes up every day in a different person’s life. It’s interesting and fascinating and thought-provoking.
  • Beautiful Creatures and Beautiful Darkness, Margaret Stohl and Kami Garcia. Yes. Beautiful Creatures. You probably saw a terrible-looking trailer for the movie at some point. There’s a book. It’s surprisingly good as far as supernatural-YA-romance goes (not like I read a lot of that) and is from the viewpoint of a guy, for some fun variety. I’m in the third book now and am enjoying them – quick, entertaining, drama, but maybe four books is a little too much. I found myself hoping that just once the book would end with the special/supernaturally gifted character dying/going bad/living in another world and their normal one-true-love would build a solid relationship with that other normal person that got tangled up in the mess, so apparently that means I’m getting tired of the genre. Not tired enough to stop reading, though.
  • works-in-progress: Beautiful Chaos, Cinderella Ate My Daughter (Peggy Orienstein), The Gifts of Imperfection (Brene Brown)

reading (bloggish)

My blog reader is still overwhelmingly full, thanks to that Africa-induced backup. I’m trying to catch up. Well, kinda trying.

listening 

these songs here have been on repeat. will I ever stop listening to Imagine Dragons on repeat? maybe. maybe not. probably not.

I’ve also started to get my fall music together. aka dancing in the kitchen songs.

watching

  • Dance Academy is back, y’all. DANCE ACADEMY IS BACK. REJOICE WITH ME. But really though, this show is terrible in all the best ways and actually really good and I spent 95% of it cringing on Tara’s behalf because homegirl. is. clueless.
  • Breaking Pointe. because I’m a dancer and therefore MUST watch every show about dance. (except SYTYCD. totally haven’t watched this season at all).
  • Camp. This is terrible in all the terrible ways, and features like 75% of the Dance Academy cast, which is why I started watching it. I don’t even know what Abigail’s character’s name is on this show…she’ll always be Abigail to me.
  • Getting caught-up-ish on Once Upon A Time and remember how much I lovelovelove it. So good.
  • An episode or two of Elementary, which I adore so much but never remember I want to watch. Still in season one, y’all.

eating

guys! guys! guys! I have an apartment now! Not really, as it’s still campus housing but the fact remains that are two bedrooms, a bathroom, and a kitchen. Feeding myself like a grownup. My roomie’s lactose and gluten-free, and I’m paleo (at least 75% of the time) so it’s all about the real food. Nothing makes me happy like a fridge full of veggies.

  • a half-improvised paleo chicken curry based on five different recipes that ended up in the crockpot-bowl-part in the oven because we don’t have a pot big enough for soup. oops. still: quite good.
  • PaleOMG’s crockpot chicken enchiladas. guys. SO. GOOD. I’m in love and still happily eating leftovers. It’s almost better cold.
  • scrambled eggs. lots of scrambled eggs.

loving

  • having my own room. space is a beautiful thing.
  • being dance in the dance department. I missed my friends and teachers and that beautiful studio that feels like home.
  • being back with my college church family. it’s really family, y’all.
  • hammocking. there’s the perfect tree on campus for my eno. I love watching the freshmen freak out that I’m hanging in a tree.
  • catching up with all the friends I haven’t seen for nine months
  • making new internet friends (that means you, #fmfparty peeps)
  • looking like a different person every day as my hair grows out. the next three weeks are gonna be rough, though.
  • getting to spend a week (and a day) at the Best Job Ever. the camp staff is seriously my family, and I miss them all during the year. at some point, I’m going to have to become a real adult and get a real job and stop working at summer camp. I dread that day.

linking up with Leigh Kramer to talk about what I’ve been into this month! what has your August looked like?

[july 2013]

July was…a month.

I left home July 1 and returned on the 31st. In between, I flew to Kenya, ate a lot of chapati, walked a lot of dusty roads, held the hands of a lot of children, met some wonderful people, and learned a lot. Oh, and shaved my head. #kenyolo.

Africa was beautiful and hard and heartbreaking and life-changing and I still haven’t wrapped my head around this month. I’ve got a few blogs that I wrote over the past month to post and a lot of stuff to process, so expect way too many posts in the future that include the sentence “when I was in Kenya…”

But for now, let’s talk about what I was into this month.

reading (book-wise)

  • The Bean Trees, Barbara Kingsolver. I’m trying to work my way through her books and loved The Bean Trees.
  • The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, The Second Summer of the Sisterhood, Girls in Pants, Forever in Blue, and The Sisterhood Everlasting, aka the entire Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants series by Ann Brashares, because I’m continuing my trend of reading at twenty-one all of the books that I didn’t read in high school.
  • The Diviners, Libba Bray. I’m not a stranger to supernatural/ghost murder YA fiction (Maureen Johnson, anyone?) but this book actually did creep me out, in an enjoyable way.
  • It’s Kind of a Funny Story, Ned Vizzini. I think this a movie, too? I’ll have to watch it. This was a fast and really interesting read about a 15-year-old with depression and his five-day stay in the psychiatric ward. It’s kind of based on a true story, as the author did actually spend time in a mental health ward.
  • Love and Other Perishable Items, Laura Buzo. I’m mostly meh on this book. It was enjoyable, it was something to read, but I didn’t love it.
  • Eat, Pray, Love, Elizabeth Gilbert. Finally got around to reading this and loved it. It made me want to run off to India and spend four months doing yoga, and then I realized that that might actually drive me crazy. Still: loved it.
  • The Help, Kathryn Stockett. I know everyone read this like two years ago, but hey, I’m always a little behind. Fantastic.
  • A Year of Biblical Womanhood, Rachel Held Evans. Again, everyone read this a year ago and raved about it. I have a blog about this that I’ll be posting soon, but basically: loved it. Adored it. If you haven’t read it yet, read it. Right now. Go buy it and then read it and then make everyone you know read it.

I’ve also begun Mere Christianity (C.S. Lewis), Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte), and Blue like Jazz (Donald Miller).

reading (blog-wise)

…nope. I have nothing. When you spend a month with an iPod touch as your only internet device, and no reliable internet…you’re behind on your blogs. I’m terrified of opening my reader. (I just did. 235 unread blogs. Eep.)

listening

again, nothing new. John Mark McMillan saw a lot of play on my iPod this month, as did Bastille’s Pompeii.

watching

Movies! Lots of movies! Lots of in-flight movies!

  • Les Miserables, finally. So. good.
  • Silver Linings Playbook. Again, finally. Again, so good.
  • Bridesmaids
  • Wreck-it Ralph
  • The Croods
  • Anna Karenina. Loved the stage setting used for this. Loved it.
  • Admission (most of it…and then the entertainment system cut out right before I found out if the kid got into Princeton. Curse you, Delta.)
  • The Lion King, because Africa.
  • Date Night
  • Get Smart
  • Marley and Me, the first half. I need to finish it at some point.
  • Modern Family, bits and pieces of seasons 1-4, because one of my teamies was watching it.

loving

  • my fantastic o-flow fam. missing them, a lot.
  • abusing eshet chayil. and by abusing, I mean using at every possible opportunity, including setting up a tent in the pouring rain with my teammate. I’m gonna eshet chayil myself for that one.
  • riding a motorbike down african roads
  • the real shower I took last night and finally feeling clean for the first time in a month
  • kenyan tea
  • foggy mornings at our home in kenya
  • all of the beautiful children I held, hugged, and high-fived
  • not having hair. life is approximately 500 times easier. dear everyone, get rid of your hair.
  • detaching from my online life for a month. finding freedom in not being connected 24/7.
  • chapati. have I mentioned that I love chapati? it’s delicious. and unhealthy. let’s not think about that.
  • quality time and good conversation with my teammates
  • the wonderful welcome we received from everyone in kenya
  • the bible. I read all of the epistles this month and am trying to get more into the old testament, too.

 

kenya

As usual, linking up with HopefulLeigh to share my love list for this month. now, tell me – what did you love?