What I’m Into – September 2013 {Linkup}


This month simply flew by.  I kept hoping we’d have gloriously cool fall temps, but its been pretty warm in our neck of the woods.  So, for me, it hasn’t felt like fall quite yet. {I need a temperature cool down and a leaf change or two before I feel fall in my bones.}  I’ve been enjoying this season of productivity and looking forward to good things.  I’m writing everyday–especially in anticipation of next month’s challenge/blog fun.  I’m linking up today with two of my favorite bloggers – Leigh and Emily.

{P.S. – If you are here looking for my 31 Days of Favorites series, not to worry – its here.  I wrote this post a few days ago, and due to travel and the 31 Days linkup coming early, I had to publish this one a few days late.  This is a regular post for me at the blog, and one of my favorite linkups, so perhaps consider it a bonus post in my 31 Days series!

Online World Faves

Jerusalem Greer – I Am Not Jen Hatmaker

Mary Demuth – Best Blog Practices

Sarah Bessey – All The Feelings About Conferences

Blaine Hogan {with Sarah Carter} – Facing The Blank Page

Holley Gerth: A God-Sized Dreamer’s Prayer

Addie Zierman: Septembering  & My Publishing Journey: Pt 1 & Pt. 2 

Nadia Bolz-Weber speaking some truth to 1000’s of Lutheran youth:

I saw this video on Rachel Held Evans blog, and was captivated by Nadia and her incredible message.  I’ve got her book on my Amazon wish list – hope to read it soon!

Emily Freeman‘s book trailer for her new release A Million LIttle Ways {Out October 1st!}

I have been waiting for this book with bated breath for months!  I’ve pre-ordered it on Amazon, and hopefully will have it in my hot little hands tomorrow.  {Apparently Barnes & Noble already has it on the shelves–go check it out!}  I saw the trailer earlier this month, and instantly loved it.  I’m also really looking forward to the chance to meet Emily in October at Allume, and at the upcoming event, An Afternoon At The Barn {I have just looked on Amazon, and they are claiming the book won’t be sent until mid-November–sadness.  Hope I can find a copy at Allume.}


A New-to-Me Blog – Author Kate Christensen

I read and LOVED Kate’s newest book Blue Plate Special this month, which led me to her blog.  I will now be a loyal reader, because her blog feels like an extension of her book to me. (She even says this particular book came about from her blog posts).  Though she is a fiction writer, I have only read her memoir.  She writes such compulsively readable prose, and even the quiet simple moments of her day are interesting in her voice.

On My Blog

 I felt like I took real steps this month in continuing to find my writing voice.  Two of my posts in particular seemed to resonate the most.   I was able to finally form sentences together in a tribute to my beloved grandmother–it was surprisingly healing and helpful to my grieving process.  I also wrote my first real bona fide guest post for another blog!  My sweet blog-friend-kindred Katie graciously offered me the opportunity, and I stepped out on a limb and shared a post that made me scared a little – When Your Creative Outlet Changes.  I’m so grateful to Katie for the chance to guest post.  I’m available to any other blogs that would allow me to do so – anyone, anyone??


what i read

Notes From A Blue Bike: The Art of Living Intentionally In A Chaotic World by Tsh Oxenreider

I absolutely LOVED this book.  I would sincerely put it in my top 5 reads of the year.  I loved reading more about Tsh’s personal story and journey.  She talks about concepts and ideas that are talked about a lot these days–things like simple living and living with intention–but her spin and take on these subjects is unique and very much needed.  She shared so much wisdom and her suggestions were always practical, and never preachy.  I hope to promote this book more on my blog close to her release date (February 2014), and I will certainly be gifting it to friends.

This book is about the circumstances in my life that caused me to think differently, the ideas that came to life because of those circumstances, and how you have permission to think and live differently too.  Just because the culture around you says your family needs to live in such-and-such a way, doesn’t mean you have to.

Isn’t that liberating?

Blue Plate Special: An Autobiography of My Appetites by Kate Christensen

I’ve written about this book in a couple of different posts–including my latest Twitterature linkup this month.  I really loved this read.  Christensen’s narrative voice is pure and beautifully simple, no matter what difficult aspect of her life she may be sharing.  Her descriptions of food and the things she loves to cook are fantastic.  If you like foodie memoir, you may really enjoy this one–though it kind of felt like a regular memoir with food-writing deliciously mixed in.

To taste fully is to live fully.  And to live fully is to be awake and responsive to complexities and truths–good and terrible, overwhelming and minuscule.  To eat passionately is to allow the world in; there can be no hiding or sublimation when you’re chewing a mouthful of food so good it makes you swoon.


When We Were On Fire: A Memoir of Consuming Faith, Tangled Love & Starting Over by Addie Zierman

I’ve been reading Addie’s blog, How To Talk Evangelical here and there since I first read it through one of Hopeful Leigh’s linkups.  Addie graciously offered to send an advanced reader copy to any of us shameless bloggers that asked last month, and thus I found myself unexpectedly eating up the words of this book with blazing speed.  I knew I would relate somewhat to Addie’s experience in the evangelical bubble of Christianity, but I had no idea how much.  I also had no idea what an incredible writer Addie is until I couldn’t stop reading her book!  Her narrative is extraordinary, and I think will be relatable to all whether they resonate with her story or not.  I’m excited to be featuring an interview with Addie this coming month during my 31 Days series.

You are beginning to understand the circular nature of prayer, spiraling toward a tiny center and then curling out again.

To learn to pray is to learn to walk this labyrinth again ad again, in and out, in and out.  It is to be filled with honesty and determination and love, to learn to walk circularly through your whole life toward the Light at the center that never stops burning.

what i’m reading

The Journal Keeper: A Memoir by Phyllis Theroux, Soil & Sacrament by Fred Bahnson, A Year of Writing Dangerously by Barbara Abercrombie, Trouble In The Town Hall {Dorothy Martin Mystery #2} by Jeanne Dams and Prayer by Philip Yancey.


 A Library Book Sale

I have been a visit-every-week kind of girl to the library this summer and fall.  I ambled in one day to return some books and found myself on the 3rd floor, looking for this video.  I turned the corner and saw the kind of sign any avid book lover lives for – Book Sale.  I wandered in and happily perused the ridiculously inexpensive books – 50 cents for a paperback and $1 for hardcovers {God Bless Library Book Sales!}.  As I put a few choice items in my hands for purchase {Anne Lamott’s Plan B & Patricia Hampl’s Virgin Time}, a stocky and sweet looking librarian came into the room and made an announcement.

“We are closing the sale down today, and don’t want these books to go to waste.  You can take any book you can carry out of here in a bag home for free.”

All of us shoppers/bookaholics stopped and blinked our eyeballs like a deer in a headlight.  “Did she actually just say that?” we all silently wondered as we looked at each other, mouths agape.

Suddenly, my book stack grew from this…


to this. {Can we say, ‘Book Giveaway Coming on The Blog Soon!’ Yes, we can.}


{And in case you were wondering, I definitely still made a donation to the library.  I’m so grateful for public libraries and the printed page.}


Music I’m Listening To

I downloaded and have on repeat Gungor’s title song of their new album, I am Mountain.  Other downloads include Shine off Birdy’s new EP, Wine We Drink and Fire & Dynamite off two different Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors‘ albums, and this gorgeous worship song.  I am excitedly waiting for my friend Reeve‘s new album to arrive – I know it’ll be another one to play on  constant repeat!

Sunrises & Prayer Retreats

I had been looking forward to my church’s fall prayer retreat for over a month.  As would be expected, when you carve out time to meet with God in solitude, it did not disappoint.  

I beheld the sunrise pictured below in the cool of the morning as I drove to the retreat.  I connected with some kindred spirits at my church that I haven’t seen for over a year. I brought way too many books, and of course, stuck to my Bible, journal, and a few select volumes.  I spent most of my time praying inside the lodge {as opposed to walking the beautiful grounds like I did 2 years ago} because of the humidity.  That is, until the sky opened up after the loudest clap of thunder you’ve ever heard, and downpoured on us like the heavens were crying out.  Then there was a delicious cool breeze and I walked outside and breathed in deep as I prayed.  I asked God to speak to me, and man, did he ever.  I feel refreshed in my spirit, and ready to tackle the next things I feel called by God to do.  Soli deo Gloria.



What I’m Looking Forward to In October

SO MUCH!  I am hopeful for October to hold many delights!  We’re taking a trip to the South to see my husband’s family, I’ll be holding my first Mary & Martha gathering {and blogging about it for sure here}, I’ll be blogging daily for a month straight–31 Days of Favorites, {please come and read!} and I’ll be happily meeting a blogging kindred friend for the first time in person whilst attending my favorite blogging conference!  Oh, and that entire list of goodness will happen during {hopefully} lower temperatures and the changing of leaves.  Pure Bliss.

{This is straight up my favorite linkup, people.  Thanks to the lovely Leigh for hosting, as always.  Affiliate links in this post support the blog – thank you!}

What Were You Into This September?

3 comments on “What I’m Into – September 2013 {Linkup}

  1. Love it all…as always! And while I was thinking about the books and the quote and the art, the amazing trailer for Emily’s book (!), I just thought about Allume! Just think…we might find our way into each other’s October “What I’m Into” posts. 🙂 In real life!!

    And another PS – So thankful for your guest post. 🙂

  2. Such great stuff here! My to-read stack is getting higher… Tsh’s book sounds awesome! And I will be checking out Kate Christensen’s blog. I can’t wait to hear more about your Mary & Martha gathering.

speak your mind, share your heart