Friday Finds: 10/6/17

I hope it’s feeling like fall where you are – it’s almost 90 here, but I’m trying not to complain about it.

Here are a few links and other things for your weekend.

The National Book Award announced its nominees earlier this week. Out of 20 books nominated in non-fiction and fiction, I am both surprised and a little embarrassed to say I haven’t read a single one! I do own Sing, Unburied, Sing (it was one of my Book of the Month picks last month), so I will make reading it a priority. I haven’t even heard of most of them.

I mentioned Free of Me by Sharon H. Miller in my September reading summary.  Sharon wrote a great piece for The Gospel Coalition highlighting the themes of her book. Read this and if it resonates with you, get her book.  I think it’s great.

Melissa Kruger also had a great post on TGC’s site this week: Life in the Shadow of Death.  She’s another one of my favorite authors.

Worth a Listen

Here are a few sermons/podcasts that made me say “Amen” more than once.

Curtis Jones of Bayou City Fellowship in Houston, TX: “The Good Samaritan and Race in America”

Nancy Guthrie at TGCW16: “Three Little Words that Change Everything”

Rockbridge Church (my church!): “Church Works: The Building” and “Jonah: Part 1”

And, lastly, a couple new albums that I’ve been playing on repeat: Where His Light Was by Kristene Dimarco, and Lecrae’s latest release, All Things Work Together.

Enjoy!

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Friday Finds: 9/29/17

This may be the weekend in which fall arrives in Virginia! It’s been hot as blazes this week, but the weekend forecast finally shows low 70s, which is wonderful considering I will be outside much of the day tomorrow.  College Gameday is going to my beloved Blacksburg so I will be watching closely for views of my hometown (and, later, tuning in to see the Hokies upset the Tigers…hopefully).

Here are my notable “finds” of the week:

If you need some reading recommendations, there are several good books on this list. I like that they are all on the short side — sometimes 400 pages is intimidating — even for me!

These articles have an interesting take on solitude and being alone: “The Pursuit of Loneliness” and “The Importance of Being Alone.” I’d love to hear what you think.

So Hugh Hefner died this week and while I really don’t want to give him any additional attention, the response on Twitter has been fascinating.  He was clearly a polarizing figure for obvious reasons, so it was no surprise for some to hail him as a hero and others to make him the villain.  What I appreciated, however, was this post by Emma Gray of the Huffington Post — I think it’s worthwhile because it shows the way the Sexual  Revolution is actually anti-feminist (and does so from a non religious perspective): “The Contradictory Feminist Legacy of Playboy’s Hugh Hefner”. And, since I’ve already brought it up, did you hear about how he bought a spot in the mausoleum next to Marilyn Monroe? He’s basically a stalker/sexual predator even in death . It’s disgusting.

I also found this rather old article by Jen Wilkin and really liked what she had to say – I guess this is Christian feminism…? No matter what you call it, let’s raise strong girls who can’t be easily manipulated: “On Daughters and Dating: How to Intimidate Suitors.”

If someone wants to buy me this poncho, I wouldn’t be sad.

And, last but not least, I have a sad story. I spent the better part of an hour last night looking for a new pumpkin recipe to try. I couldn’t find one! It seems people are all about pumpkin and chocolate combinations this year, and that is one flavor profile I cannot get behind.  What about you? Fan or no? And do you have a non-chocolate pumpkin themed recipe to share? I’d love one!

Have a great weekend!

Friday Finds: 9/22/17

This has been the longest week! A relatively good one, but a long one nonetheless. I have a pretty busy weekend lined up, but hopefully I’ll find a few hours to rest – I need it.

Here are this week’s finds.

For those of you craving a fall drink and don’t love the Pumpkin Spice Latte, Starbucks has a few new drinks to try. My sister tells me the Pumpkin Spice Chai Tea Latte is pretty good.  I’m personally looking forward to trying the Maple Pecan Latte.  It sounds delicious!

I am beyond excited about my summer plans (already, I know).  In June, my sisters and I are attending The Gospel Coalition’s Conference for Women in Indianapolis. I cannot wait to hear some of my favorite teachers in person – including Jen Wilkin, Gloria Furman, and Melissa Kruger.  And speaking of Jen Wilkin, here is a great article she posted this week: “Think Fake News is Scary? Try False Teaching.”

Some of you may know, but I love personality typing systems. I’ve recently learned about the enneagram and find it fascinating.  Here’s a link to a great podcast I listened to yesterday with Annie Downs and Beth McCord (it’s podcast episode 53).  Beth is an enneagram coach and you can take an assessment on her website here.  I still can’t figure out which number I am – I’ve narrowed it down to a couple, but haven’t convinced myself of either one.  On the podcast, Annie recommends a couple books that I want to get my hands on.

That’s all I’ve got….enjoy your weekend!

Friday Finds: 9/15/17

Happy Friday – we’ve made it through another work week! Mine was extremely busy so this post will be brief.  Here are a few finds from the last few days.

I really appreciated the way the Modern Mrs. Darcy described her 9/11 experience. Her words reminded me of the way I felt after the April 16, 2007 shooting at Virginia Tech.  Trauma is real and impacts us in ways we can’t predict.

I think I’ve mentioned the podcast “Pod Save America” on here before, but it’s worth mentioning again. This week’s episode is an interview with Hillary Clinton and summarizes much of what she discusses in her book, What Happened, which released this week.  While I don’t agree with Clinton on every issue, I respect her greatly and appreciate what she has to say about sexism in America.

And since there’s so much heaviness in the world, I’ve had to make sure my TV watching provides an escape, so I’ve been watching “Parks & Rec” and I LOVE IT! I know, I know, I’m way late to this phenomenon but I’m glad I found it now.

What are your plans this weekend? I will be getting my household chores done, reading, and watching football on Saturday.  On Sunday, we’re celebrating my nieces’ second birthday(s?) with family.  I’m looking forward to seeing everyone…and holding my nephew Will who was born this week!

Friday Finds: 9/8/17

I don’t have a whole lot to share today – it’s been a wild week. Even today has been full of ups and downs.

Who’s excited for football?!?!  I loved this article written by Josh Jackson’s uncle.   Josh is the freshman starting quarterback for Virginia Tech and his uncle is the college football beat writer for Penn State.

I found another recipe for a fall-themed cake I want to try: Vanilla Bean Bundt Cake with Pecan Praline Glaze.  It looks delicious!

And lastly, I want to recommend the current She Reads Truth study on The Sermon on the Mount. I think it’s a four-week plan, but you can start anytime.  The plan is free on their website or $1.99 on the app.  Check it out here!

Have a great weekend, friends! I will spend mine doing household chores and anxiously awaiting the arrival of my first nephew!

Friday Finds: 8/25/17

Today’s Friday Finds will be a quick one!

First, what did y’all think about Taylor Swift’s new single “Look What You Made Me Do”?  Personally, I find it a bit creepy, but I look forward to hearing the album.  She’s changed so much since “Tim McGraw“.  I’m feeling a little nostalgic.

And while we’re thinking of the old Taylor, here’s a fun quiz:  Which Taylor Swift Era Best Describes You?  I got “Red.”

So the eclipse happened and I was really excited until I wasn’t.  I knew 88% vs. 100% totality wasn’t ideal, but I thought I’d get a lot more than I did.  I am so jealous of all those people who got to see the real thing.  Emily P. Freeman’s words are so relatable:  When the Eclipse is Underwhelming…

I hope I can figure out a good 2024 road trip.  I’m astounded by the ways God reveals Himself to the world.

And here’s another Pretty Cool Eclipse Story about a woman who was born during a solar eclipse and then gave birth during one.  I wondered if the eclipse would increase the number of women going into labor the way full moons and new moons do.  I hope someone is running that data.

And lastly, a recipe I am dying to try: Cinnamon Coffee Cake.  I love a good bundt cake/pound cake, but this one isn’t compliant with my diet.  I’ll save it for the next time I’m baking for a crowd.

Have a great weekend, friends!

Friday Finds 5/5/17

This Friday Finds post is brought to you by my “Flood Day.”  That’s right.  School was cancelled today due to the creeks rising over the bridges.

I was already at work at 6:45 and so I’ve been trying to redo my entire testing schedule…that’s been fun.

Today’s find is a little bit different: I’ve got a fun story for.  Last night at small group, a couple people shared that they are daily reminded of God’s love for them in small ways.  For example, one woman said she always prays for a good parking spot and she always gets one.  Just something God does for her.

I’ve got to admit that it kind of made me mad.  I didn’t say anything, but I was frustrated…and spent a lot of time last night thinking about why it mad me so mad.  I guess the root of it is that I don’t feel like that’s the way God deals with me.  I don’t get those “and then I won the lottery” or “and they lived happily ever after” stories.  My friend needed a new car….then passed out at the doctor’s office, broke her nose, and got a settlement that paid for the new car.  I’m not jealous, exactly.  It’s just that I’ve begun to understand that the easy way isn’t going to be His path for me, and that’s ok.  His love for me is revealed in other ways…like the way He strips away my pride and forces circumstances that require I give up trying to do things on my own and trust Him.  And that means hard things.

All that to say, last night I was feeling sad and definitely asked God, “Why can’t You just love me that way instead?”

This morning while getting ready for my nonexistent workday, I discovered the cream for my coffee wasn’t smelling right and didn’t think it would be wise to risk it.  I’m not a fan of black coffee so I headed to Sheetz on the way in.  I got my coffee and when I pulled out money to pay, the cashier asked, “Would you like your coffee to be free this morning?”

“Ummm, yes. I most certainly would,” I stammered back.  (Turns out they changed their rewards structure and I hadn’t realized….)

It’s not an earth shattering miracle to have a free coffee that typically costs $1.50 but I don’t want to ignore that it was a gift.  God sent His love in a clear way…the easy way…and I am thankful I didn’t miss it.

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And another little find for you, courtesy of my sister, Amy.  Some friends of hers are the models in this adorable “This is Us” Themed Photo Shoot.  So fun!

Happy Weekend!