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I Thought It Was Just Me


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  • Still Points North: One Alaskan Childhood, One Grown-up World, One Long Journey Home
    Still Points North: One Alaskan Childhood, One Grown-up World, One Long Journey Home
    by Leigh Newman

    Can't wait! 

  • Einstein's God: Conversations About Science and the Human Spirit
    Einstein's God: Conversations About Science and the Human Spirit
    by Krista Tippett
  • The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone---Especially Ourselves
    The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone---Especially Ourselves
    by Dan Ariely
  • Marriage Rules: A Manual for the Married and the Coupled Up
    Marriage Rules: A Manual for the Married and the Coupled Up
    by Harriet Lerner
  • Rhythm And Repose
    Rhythm And Repose

    Tender and beautiful. 

  • Boys & Girls
    Boys & Girls
    by Alabama Shakes

    Love this album! So happy when I saw BrainPicker post this on her site! 

  • City of Refuge
    City of Refuge
    by Abigail Washburn

    Pure magic!

  • Some Nights
    Some Nights
    by Fun.
  • She Ain't Me
    She Ain't Me
    by Carrie Rodriguez

    I'm such a fan. 

  • I'm Your Man
    I'm Your Man
    by Leonard Cohen

    Take this Waltz is on my top ten list of all songs!

  • Babel
    by Mumford & Sons
  • Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey (Original UK Unedited Edition)
    Masterpiece Classic: Downton Abbey (Original UK Unedited Edition)

    So totally addicted to this series! Absolutely amazing!

  • Zen: Vendetta / Cabal / Ratking [Blu-ray]
    Zen: Vendetta / Cabal / Ratking [Blu-ray]
    starring Rufus Sewell

    Based on your recommendations from a recent blog post! It's another wonderful BBC mystery series! 

  • The Good Wife: The First Season
    The Good Wife: The First Season
    starring Julianna Margulies, Chris Noth, Josh Charles, Matt Czuchry, Archie Panjabi

    One of the best shows on TV. Juiliana Marguiles is incredible. 

  • Doc Martin: Collection - Series 1-4
    Doc Martin: Collection - Series 1-4
    starring Martin Clunes, Caroline Catz, Lia Williams, Stephanie Cole, Ian McNeice

ash wednesday

Today, our family observes Ash Wednesday - the first day of lent. From the time I was Ellen’s age, we always gave up sweets for lent. My brother, sisters and I spent forty long days planning our attack on the Easter baskets: “I’m gonna eat the jelly beans first.” “No way, man. I’m going for the robin eggs.”

I never understood exactly why we did it, but we did and it seemed meaningful in an “at least we’re in the same sad, sugar-free boat” kinda way.

Part of my 2007 fall apart/fall back together, was spiritually re-engaging with God, my life and the world at large. I wasn't motivated by the fear of not going to church or by a new certainty of belief; fear and certainty actually led me away from my faith. I was spiritually inspired by the ideas of love, grace, joy and gratitude.

As I contemplated what to do for lent this year, I decided to focus on joy and gratitude. After reflecting and praying about it, I realized that my greatest barriers to joy and gratitude are fear and “busyness.” Of course, for me, the two go hand in hand: I can easily become afraid of how uncertain and vulnerable life is, so I stay really busy in order to feel “in control” and to minimize the feelings of vulnerability. The downside is that I’m so busy, I forget to create and appreciate joy.

So, for lent this year, I’m giving up a little bit of the fear and busyness that gets in my way of joy and gratitude.

First, I'm afraid of my Canon Rebel (and photography in general). I don’t understand how to make a photograph reflect what I’m seeing and any mention of aperture or shutter speed completely shuts me down. Even with all of these hurdles, photographs bring me (and my family) great joy. For lent, I’ve signed up for 4 photography classes (all before Easter).

Second, I love buying cards. I think a good card is like a little piece of art or poetry that comes with an envelope. I started colecting cards because I used to be really good at actually sending them. I haven’t sent a card in a couple of years (too busy, you understand). For lent, I’m going to start sending cards again – at least one card per week.  

My hope is that, by Easter, I’ve developed some habits and invited more love and gratitude into my life. We'll see.


way back wednesday!

Here's my personal slogan for WBW: 
If you're not flinchin' now,
you weren't stylin' then!
If you're playing along, leave a link to your blog in the comments so we can laugh at you too.  
1987 - on my way to a Midnight Oil concert. seriously. 


today may be super tuesday, but tomorrow is

Way Back Wednesday! Shawn (my friend and shizzy blog designer) and I are going to take our cue from Carissa at Brown Eyed Fox and start posting our "way backs" on the first Wednesday of each month. I wanted to post something today to give the Texas coalition time to prepare. I'll expect to see something from Dawn, Jen, Melody, Farrah and the rest. Maybe next month we'll start themes - big hair, big mistakes (this came to me as I was searching for tomorrow's picture), big days (weddings, births, etc). We'll do a free-for-all tomorrow. I will say that soothing my political stress by digging through photos this morning has made me very grateful for the following things:

1. My 20 years with Steve (he seems to be in every album down to my baby book)

2. Short, straight hair (a picture is worth 1,000 cans of Shaper spray)

3. Being too old to dress like the 80's now that's it back in style (just say no to shoulder pads)

4. Being sober for 12 years (not talented enough on photoshop to crop the beer and cigarette out of every picture)

5. The gifts of laughter (and sharing those gifts with the friends who laugh with you, not at you)