This has been a strange September. It's my interim month and I haven't figured out my next step yet, besides The Enneagram Coach and the occasional odd job. And so I've had time to write and read and meet friends for coffee in the middle of a weekday. It's like being on perpetual vacation, except you know that's not how bills get paid. I'm not freaking out yet but ask me again in a couple of days.
Read and Reading
So many people call The Brothers K (Duncan) their favorite novel and I completely understand all the fuss now. Stunning.
I wish I could make everyone read this social history of single women: Bachelor Girl. The way Israel depicts the stigma single women faced in each particular era and the ways this stigma plays out still to this day is equally fascinating and horrifying. It made me grateful to be single now instead of then, even though singleness today is not without its own challenges.
I loved Tana French's latest The Secret Place. On par with my love for In the Woods and The Likeness, French is at her best here. While I could have done without some of the magical elements (didn't add to the story), the characters kept me guessing and I closed the final pages with satisfaction.
I love Maggie Stiefvater so I was prepared to like The Raven Boys but then she went and blew me away with the humor, insights, and darker tone. I couldn't put it down and picked up The Dream Thieves straightaway. I'm impressed with Stiefvater's writing in both books. I re-read sentences just to appreciate them- and I hardly ever do that. The big picture story continues to move forward and I cannot wait to see what happens in book 3.
Currently reading: We Make the Road By Walking (McLaren), Amazing Grace (Norris), New and Selected Poems: Volume 1 (Oliver), Our Great Big American God (Turner), Written in My Own Heart's Blood (Gabaldon)
(I read 13 books this month.)
Must-see TV: Real Housewives of New Jersey, Project Runway, Outlander, Scandal, Once Upon a Time
3 new shows have caught my attention: Black-ish, Madam Secretary, and How to Get Away With Murder. Good starts. We'll see how they do.
Also THAT OUTLANDER WEDDING.
New discoveries: Johnnyswim (not new, more like I stopped resisting)
I saw Matthew Perryman Jones at Musicians Corner. I love his music so much.
Listen to the What I'm Into 2014 playlist.
Things I Love:
- Going to my friend Matthew Paul Turner's book signing at Parnassus Books. Have you picked up a copy of Our Great Big American God yet? I've been loving it.
- Getting to see Brian McLaren speak at GracePointe not once, but twice. Great sermon in the morning and then an insightful Q & A in the evening. I got to tell him what his work has meant to me and then we bonded over the Enneagram and our Amahoro connection.
- Staying with my old grammar school classmate Rachel one night while on a road trip. Great catching up with her and getting to know her family.
- Weekend away with my sisterhood. This year was more low-key, a port in the storm for me. It was redemptive and healing in many ways. It's good to be with your people and know you are fully seen and fully loved. It's also good to laugh your heart out and lay out on the dock and let the conversations meander wherever they want.
- I'm not a board game person. I'll make exceptions for Scrabble and Rummikub but a part of me dies when someone suggests we play a game. The new exception to this rule? Cards Against Humanity. Proud to say I was a contender for winning in my first ever time playing. Take that for what you will.
- I've wanted to be a better podcast listener and the answer all along has been the Podcast app. It's changing my life. I'm listening to This American Life, How They Blog, Wait Wait Don't Tell Me, Joy the Baker, and a few others I'm checking out.
This bouquet was a gift on my last day from the family I worked for. There's something ever so hopeful about flowers looking and growing toward the sun. #SimpleRealJoyful
- Larabar's #SimpleRealJoyful Instagram challenge is the first time I've done an Instagram challenge and it proved to be perfect for this month of unknowns. I loved capturing the mundane, beautiful moments in my day, especially when life is at a slower pace. (Full disclosure: I got a couple of boxes of Larabars for my participation but I would have done it for free. I love their product (thank you, thank you for dairy-free and nut-free options!!!!!) and I loved this challenge.)
- My seventh Stitch Fix was a home run. Thanks to referral credit and the awesomeness of stylist Anna, I kept the whole thing, which is the first time that's ever happened. I got a moto jacket, fit-and-flare dress, and 3 versatile shirts. I tried it all on over at my best friend's house and my niece-in-love was particularly enthralled with the dress. "It's soooo pretty," she said. "Will it look pretty on me?" I asked her. "Everything you wear looks pretty on you, Aunt Leigh." And THAT is why she's my favorite.
- "Exploring" the capital building with Jen. Sure, it was closed when we got there but the architecture and statue out front was still impressive.
- Going to dinner at Puckett's and finding out you're there in time for Happy Hour specials.
- I saw Once the Musical at TPAC, thanks to my awesome roommate. It's different than the movie but still highly enjoyable. I wanted to sing along with all the songs. The music was the true star. I didn't take advantage of the bar on stage but I got a kick out of watching audience members go get drinks before the show and during intermission.
- Discussing work, calling, and the Enneagram with Katelyn Beaty. I'm really looking forward to her forthcoming book!
In the Blogosphere:
(If you want to follow me on Instagram, my user name is leighkramer.)
On The Blog:
What I'm Into Link Up Guidelines:
1. Today’s link-up will stay up for one week. The next What I'm Into link up will be Friday October 31.
2. Link the unique URL of your post, not your blog's home page. Readers peruse link ups months after the fact and you want to make it easy for them to find your What I'm Into post.
4. Visit at least 2 other posts in the linkup!
What have you been into this month?
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