If you look closely, you can see a certain infamous bridge. I've experimented with a couple of different bus routes to and from work this month. Both of which require more walking; this route pays off with the view of not only Golden Gate Bridge but the ocean as well. If that isn't a metaphor for this month, I don't know what is.
I've lived here 3 months now and there's so much I haven't explored and so much left for me to learn. The apartment search continues. But there are bright spots along the way. Most definitely.
Read and Reading
The Invisibles (Galante) is such a wonderful exploration of 4 friends who lived in a group home together, then decided not to talk once they graduated high school until circumstances brought them back together 15 years later. Great insights on friendship but also the secrets we keep from ourselves and others. It kept me engaged and guessing the whole time as to whether the characters would grow and heal or retreat into themselves. Highly recommended.
The Alchemist (Coelho) was a case of right book, right time. Watching the boy's journey unfold and seeing how he became attuned to the symbols and omens along the way reminded me of the way my intuition works and encouraged me to press in and press on as I continue to adjust to living in this city. I am so happy it was a Red Couch Book Club pick and loved our discussion last week.
I don't have the words for how much I loved Out of Sorts: Making Peace with an Evolving Faith (Bessey.) I wish I'd read it in my early 20s or even college when my faith crumbled and I began the process of rebuilding it. Sarah's wisdom and insights resonate even now as I continue to explore my relationship with God and church. If you're like me, you'll need to have a pen or highlighter handy while you read. (Out November 3. Pre-order now!)
I'm still formulating my review but suffice it to say Birmingham Revolution:Martin Luther King Jr.'s Epic Challenge to the Church (Gilbreath) is a must read. Well written and thought provoking.
I reviewed Spinster (Bolick) last week (here it is) and really enjoyed hearing from other people who have read it and/or are exploring similar questions. I hope this is the beginning of an era with more books on singleness.
Modern Romance (Ansari and Klinenberg) also has to do with singleness but it's specific to dating. They did an impressive amount of interviews and research and the findings mostly resonated with my experience. Non-singles will also benefit from reading it for the exploration of how technology affects our relationships.
(I read 12 books this month.)
Must-see TV: Real Housewives of Orange County, Scandal, How To Get Away With Murder, Once Upon A Time
Apparently I can watch one season of a show per month: I'm on season 5 of The West Wing.
I started watching I Am Cait and am really impressed with Caitlyn Jenner's openness and vulnerability about her transition and especially her advocacy for the transgender community. Truly moving.
A Night for City Hope celebrated the opening of City Hope's community center. They do such amazing work there! Plus, it was a night of great music. I especially loved Geographer.
New subscriptions: Tara Brach
Did you ever listen to Pedro the Lion? I've followed David Bazan's career with interest for a long time now and really enjoyed hearing about his doubts and where he's at with faith in this episode on You Made It Weird.
I'm incredibly proud of my friends Laura and Megan for this Sorta Awesome episode: The Truth About Anxiety. I don't struggle with anxiety but many of my loved ones do and I am all in favor of anything that lessens the stigma.
Things I Love:
- I went on a staff retreat and stayed at the Villambrosa Center, which was such a serene and beautiful place.
- I really enjoyed getting 1:1 time with my co-workers, especially the ones I didn't know as well. I also love working for a place that prioritizes their staff and wants to take intentional time to talk about vision and mission.
- We went for dinner at a nice Italian restaurant and I could not get over how good the food was. I did not follow my dairy-free restrictions and the ensuing eczema was entirely worth it. I also drank an incredibly delicious buttery chardonnay.
- My cousins and I brunched together on Labor Day. It's such a treat to spend time with them and none of us can get over how I'm here, I'm really here!
- I walked down to Devil's Teeth Baking Company for another breakfast sandwich (divine!) and fully enjoyed my time getting to know Jalyn better. It turns out she only lives a block away. It's so fun having a friend in the neighborhood!
- The Children's Ministry team headed over to The Cheese School for a night o' bonding. And cheese. (Another dairy-free cheat night.) And wine. It was drizzly at times but the conversation was worth it.
- I found a new stylist and she is amazing. Glory be.
- I don't know how I haven't had pho before but Lydia took me to a place a couple of weeks ago and I am head over heels for pho forever now.
- Great phone calls catching up with Donna, Kibibi, and Amena respectively. I'm all about other ways to keep in touch but sometimes you just need to talk in real time.
- The Donna I mentioned above? She sent me a surprise package of candy corn in the mail. My former roomie knows just what I need in the fall!
- I started going to a 1-4-2 Enneagram group and I am so excited to dive deeper into being a Four.
- San Luis Obispo is halfway between me and my friend Sharone so we met up there this past Saturday and it was so fantastic to catch up and explore the city. I adore her! It was fun getting to experience more of California and eat good food and try to go apple picking. (There were hijinks in even finding the place and then we got there and found out you can't actually pick apples. Just buy them. Boo! But they were really delicious apples.)
- I haven't visited a Mission before and it was a strange coincidence to be there the same week Junipero Serra was controversially canonized. It's a beautiful place but what a troubling history.
- My team and I put on two big events on Sunday and I am so proud of us. Also I am exhausted. Also I might have eaten frosting straight from the can when I got home that night.
In the Blogosphere:
I started a weekly-ish post of my favorite Internet finds but you can find even more of what I've been reading this month at Storify.
(If you want to follow me on Instagram, my user name is leighkramer.)
On The Blog:
I wrote about some of my most cherished friends and the way they are an echo and a mirror.
On the Leigh Kramer FB page, we talked about 100 years of fashion (not saying how many times I watched that video), shared what we were reading for National Read A Book Day, and I might have geeked out when Young House Love commented here.
(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 Friday October 30.
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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