On the Nightstand:
Okay, here's the thing. I'm reading more than I have in years. But I still want to be reading (a lot) more. I'm going to write about it more next week, because reading daily was one of my goals last month. Suffice to say, a lot of this post looks a bit like May's post. I still want to share because I have some new thoughts on each book.
Reflections for Ragamuffins: Daily Devotions by Brennan Manning
[The very same day I read these two passages from Reflections for Ragamuffins and No More Perfect Moms. It's sort of timely today because as I was typing this all I could think about was how I should be reading more and the pressure I put on myself because I've always been a reader and I never want to loose that part of me.]
No More Perfect Moms: Learn to Love Your Real Life by Jill Savage
I love the good words in this little book. But moreso I love the good words spoken by women unafraid to be vulnerable. I can hear Christ speaking through them as they love one another with words of truth and encouragement. I maybe cried a little after our group met a few weeks back because of the way this group I prayed for months over has come to fruition. In my biggest and best dreams, I did not imagine a night like what we had that night.
Fresh Power: What Happens When God Leads and You Follow by Jim Cymbala
I'm still needing to finish this one up. I like the ideas a lot, but I just haven't been able to get super into it.
Confession time. I don't think I'll end up finishing either of these. And I have to be okay with that. I've ALWAYS had a compulsion about finishing books I start, but neither of these really grabbed me and there are SO many things I want to read. I just have to let this go. I'm at a place in my life where I really don't have time to be reading things that I don't love and have a passion for. There is too much stuff begging for my attention. I can't even explain (and I'm not sure why I'm trying to) how big of a a deal this is for me. Like, I'm not saying "I'm not going to worry about these right now". I'm saying "I'm putting these aside indefinitely and if I never finish them that's okay". That is a BIG deal for this girl.
Which brings me to....
THIS is what I have been spending a great deal of time on.
I can see how this might look like an excess of library books to some, but I'm in the business of trying to grow people who love words as much as I do.
I've tried to sort of up the ante on homeschooling this Summer for a variety of reasons and one thing that means (the primary thing that means) is lots and lots of reading.
[We've been reading "A" books, "B" books, and a few random books. And plowing through our big read-aloud, Hitty.]
On the Shelf:I'm just leaving all these the same and making a light resolution to start at least one.
1000 Gifts: A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are by Ann Voskamp
Yes I'm late to this party. I bought it when it came out and other things just kept coming up and really I didn't read near enough until this year and it's still a struggle. I absolutely adore Ann's blog, though, and I really think I'd gain alot from this.
The God of Intimacy and Action: Reconnecting Ancient Spiritual Practices, Evangelism and Jusitce by Tony Campolo
This is another one that I've been meaning to read forever. I saw Tony speak awhile back and really any time I read something by him I'm moved. The title just intrigues me and I'm excited for it.
Many Ways to Say I Love You: Wisdom for Parents and Children from Mister Rodgers by Fred Rogers
If this seems dorky and cliche, I'm with you. But what I've read (a few pages) is actually really good. My mom got it and loved it and passed it on and I'm looking forward to it.
At the Theater (or from the couch):
Nada. There are a handful of documentaries Peyton wants me to watch/us to watch, so I plan to share those next month.
On the Small Screen:
Still on a kick with The West Wing.
In My Ears:
Y'all. Y'ALL. Peyton's laptop died and I have none of his iTunes library on my computer (it would never fit, the thing is extensive). He has it backed up elsewhere, but we're trying to figure out which option is best (buy a new laptop, buy a new hard drive just for iTunes since we have a desktop and an iPad, something else?). We don't want to be rash consumers. Anyway, this was the first time in almost a year I didn't create a monthly playlist. I can't tell you how disappointed and frustrated and stressed out I was about it at first (Peyton's good-natured joking response when I was about to loose it over the temporary absence of his iTunes library: "You can hashtag that UpperMiddleClassStayAtHomeMomFirstWorldProblems"). One fun thing, though has been enjoying all the old ones from previous months. So I've had a great mix of Tom Petty, Fleet Foxes, Christmas music, The Lumineers, Bruce, Mumford, David Crowder and Better Than Ezra, just to name a few.
Around the House:
We had our church supper group over this month and since children weren't involved I decided it would be fun to be a little fancy. I used our "intermediate" china for the first time (we've get to use our fine China in the five years we've been married).
When we got married, my mom helped us set up our living room so that it's a very versatile space. The four leather chairs are usually spread out around the room and the table is folded up behind the couch. When we need to, we just move the chairs, pop the table out, and scoot the couch up a smidge. It's feels like a combination of James Bond and Martha Stewart. So fun to be able to transform a room to serve different purposes.
To be fair, it is a little cozy (there were actually six chairs that night), but it worked and I was more pleased with the result than I had anticipated. Entertaining makes me sweat a little bit, because I'm not all together a natural at it and our house is kind of small-ish, but I enjoyed it a lot this time.
In the Kitchen:
Summer Salad Challenge is still going on and this one turned out fabulously. We actually ended up taking it over to a friend's house to share a meal after they moved.
It's a Mexican salad with chicken. Lettuce, chicken, corn, beans, cheese, tomatoes, and avocado. I made it in layers like a dip for the first time and that turned out to be fun. We brought salsa and sour cream to add and I heated up some refried beans and Mexican rice. Easy, easy and yummy, yummy!
In My Closet:
Also, I busted out my romper. Cannot get any more comfy than this thing unless it's gym shorts (which I spend a lot of time in these days).
In Their Closets:
Annie's little teal romper is one of my favorites (of course she prefers dresses).
Y'all. I took a sewing class and made Graves this bubble. It's getting harder and harder to find cute, sweet boy stuff, so it was necessary :)
And I can't get enough of these sweet babies in their Sunday outfits:
In My Mailbox:
I ordered several things for next Summer from Zulily. It's been awhile since I've ordered from there, but the prices were SO good and it was such cute stuff, I couldn't pass it up!
In My Cart:
I bought a few rompers from Target (and this super on sale swim suit) for next Summer for Annie since I loved the teal one this year and I'm pretty certain she'll be done with bubbles at five :) I also got a couple of things for myself (yes, more polkas!)
On My Heart:I've loved the pace of this Summer and I've been thinking a lot about how thankful I am for it. I know things will pick up big time in a few months with the move getting closer and I feel like this easy slow season has been such a blessing.
In My Prayers:
- Two of my dearest friends are both experiencing seasons exactly the opposite from what I described- I know that they know they are right smack in the middle of God's will, but transitions are rarely super easy. Carrie is selling her house while in the middle of the adoption process and Ash just brought home and newborn and now had to have unexpected surgery. I think about them both.
- I'm praying for several other friends who either feel "behind' in the story of life or left out among friends or just plain lonely. Those are such hard places to be.
- I'm praying for clarity as we start to make (financial, location, ect.) decisions about next year in NYC.
On the Calendar:
July doesn't seem terribly busy yet. I think August and the months following will be, so I'm going to continue to try to really immerse myself in the present and relax.
I'm linking up with Leigh, of course. I'd LOVE it if you'd join me!