Everything's coming up roses. I can't think of a better way to describe this May. This beautiful glorious redemptive month.
Read and Reading
Are You My Type? Am I Yours?: Relationships Made Easy Through the Enneagram (Baron and Wagele) is a fantastic basic resource comparing how each Enneagram type pairing gets along. It is uncanny to read how my type gets along (or doesn't) with the others and see my relationships written out on the page.
Tiny Beautiful Things: Advice on Love and Life From Dear Sugar (Strayed) is more essay than advice column. Strayed transcends the normal rules of giving advice and therein lies the genius and soul of her response. Absolutely moving.
I was on the crew team for a couple of years in college so I was positively enthralled by The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics, not only for its historical value but going down rowing memory lane. Even those without crew experience should find this story interesting. Written in the vain of Unbroken, The Boys in the Boat brings us back to the Depression era and the years leading up to WWII, all the more notable because of where the 1936 Olympics took place. The book centers on Joe Rantz, which is a wise choice in that the narrative keeps moving and provides the book its heart. We still learn about his fellow rowers in the process and see how they become a true team and where that eventually led them. Highly recommended.
We'll be discussing Embracing the Body: Finding God in Our Flesh and Bone by Tara Owens next month on The Red Couch. Very timely for summer.
Currently reading: We Make the Road By Walking (McLaren), De Niro (Levy), Strong Inside: Perry Wallace the Collision of Race and Sports in the South (Maraniss), Forgive Us: Confessions of a Compromised Faith (Cannon, Harper, Jackson, Rah), Searching for Sunday: Loving, Leaving, and Finding the Church (Evans), Cooked (Pollan), Atlas Girl (Wieringa), Missoula: Rape and the Justice System in a College Town (Krakauer)
(I read 12 books this month.)
Must-see TV: Real Housewives of New York, Southern Charm, Outlander
I cannot wait to see what happens next season on Once Upon A Time. Their finales always take the show in such interesting and unexpected directions!
I am behind on Outlander but because I know what happens in the second to last episode of the season, I haven't been in a rush to catch up. I will probably sob and avert my eyes through the whole thing.
I haven't had much of a chance to listen to new music but I have been figuring out what CDs will accompany on my epic road trip.
I saw Pitch Perfect 2 a couple of weeks ago and have mixed feelings. I LOVED the first movie so much. There were expectations there and they were high. Abby and I were super excited to see it! On the one hand, the music was still the star of the show and I enjoyed every song. On the other hand, so many of the jokes were one note and, frankly, racist. I'm befuddled over how that happened. Did they use an entirely different writer group the second time around? Did they lose touch with the heart of the first movie? There were still some funny parts but man. It coulda been a contenda.
One of the best things I listened to this month was the LGBTQ episode on The Liturgists, a show I hadn't listened to before. It's long but to really do the topic justice, it's necessary. They feature interviews with Christians who are affirming and non-affirming, as well as people who identify as gay and trans*. I would have appreciated the LBQ perspectives as well but still, I was impressed with how gracious the discussion was.
I also loved the Birds & Bees episode on This American Life. I first heard of comedian Kamau Bell through Death, Sex, and Money. In the second segment, it was really interesting to learn more about his experience with racism, how he's talking about it (or not) with his family, and what he did after this incident. The third segment is all about children and grief, which was my specialty when I was a hospice social worker. It's a topic that's close to my heart and I was glad to hear them advocate for honest conversations and discuss what children need while they grieve.
Things I Love:
- Since I'll be housesitting when I first get out to San Francisco, I won't be able to get my own library card. This is when my behemoth To Read stack comes in handy. I picked out a few that will accompany me on the road.
- Abby had a fabulous birthday party at her house which featured fondue and mules. And then we all sang along to our favorite songs and it was the best.
- My niece-in-love invited me to her ballet recital and school spring recital and I melted over how old she's getting and how she completely rocked her dance and her solo.
- I got to hang out with Christena Cleveland! She invited me along to a conference where she was speaking. It was such a treat to spend time together. Christena accepted a position as the director of the Center for Reconciliation at Duke Divinity and I can't wait to hear about how that goes. P.S. If you haven't read Disunity in Christ yet, you're missing out.
- Seeing how many times I can go to Edgehill Cafe in one month. Thanks to Enneagram Coach clients and my friends for accommodating my love for this place. I've got to go while I still can!
- Dinner with the family I nannied for. I love them so much and can't think about saying goodbye. A couple days later I went to Sweet Girl's toddler dance recital and about died of the cuteness.
- One of the most exciting parts of this month was being offered a position at City Church San Francisco! I'll be their Children's Ministry Administrative Assistant. I promise to tell the whole story soon because it's a wild one. Apparently in my life, I must always decide to move to a city first. The job will come second. Such a wonderful confirmation of where I'm supposed to be!
- Celebrating all the good news with Amanda! I get a little teary just thinking about how much her friendship has meant to me the past few years. She has always been one of my biggest cheerleaders and I am so sad to leave her, though I know we'll see each other again. She's just the best.
- Living Room Dance Parties with my niece-in-love
- My nephew-in-love (almost 1 year old!) reaching for me to hold him when he sees me.
- Munching on french fries at Fido with Tracy. We don't get to hang out just the two of us outside of her house very often, which made this extra special.
- Getting to hear my friend Melissa preach at GracePointe. SO GOOD.
- Cheersing with Abby with Gin and Ruby Red Grapefruit Juice
- Lunch at Woodlands Indian (so good!!!) with Allison. Every time we get together, we figure out more things we have in common. So good spending time with her!
- Lunch with Crystal- I've really enjoyed getting to know her the past couple of months! I'm glad we were able to get together while it's still easy.
- Emily Miller and her husband came to town for their anniversary. I took them to Burger UP for lunch and Las Paletas for dessert, where I ordered my usual avocado paleta and savored every bite. I always love hearing about what people think of Nashville and their plans while they visit. Plus, Emily is just good people.
- My roommate Valerie got me a complimentary ticket to see Newsies at TPAC. It's been way too long since I saw the movie so the show was quite the experience. I was blown away by the dancing!
- And then I had one of the most Nashville experiences I've had in a while: we went to the Newsies cast party at this exclusive legendary bar that recently reopened. This is where the stars would come after they played a big show. The stories that have come out of this place! Basically, there's no way I could get in of my own volition so I'm glad I could experience the fancy drinks and see the cast and obligatory reality star. Oh, and a burlesque dancer. I can't make this stuff up.
- Dinner with Casi and AE at Edley's BBQ. I loved hearing about the exciting developments in all of our lives! Plus, fried pickles.
- In my bid to move fewer things, I've been going through my closet and selling clothes to two different online consignment stores. I've sold items to Twice a couple times now and have had a great experience with selling and buying. I'm trying thredUP for the first time so we'll see how that goes. My referral links will get you $10 in credit if you want to try either place for yourself.
In the Blogosphere:
(If you want to follow me on Instagram, my user name is leighkramer.)
On The Blog:
I made a big announcement. I still can't believe I'm doing this!
On the Leigh Kramer FB page, I made ANOTHER big announcement. (It's also listed above.) I also shared this article about singleness, which touches on something I wrestle with whenever I write on the topic.
(The best way to see updates in your newsfeed is by liking and commenting on my posts regularly. Bless those FB algorithms.)
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 Wednesday July 1. I will have literally just moved across the country so if it's not up in a timely manner, please be patient.
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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