What I’m Into: May 2015 Edition

Have you ever noticed that the moments you are most enjoying your life are always the ones that seem to got the fastest? Since the weather warmed up and the world turned green and we had some long weekends to travel life has been pretty enjoyable this month and it’s also flown by. We are about 2 1/2 months from leaving Korea and as excited as I am to go home, I sort of wish I could make time stand still. Life here is comfortable and there is so much unknown ahead.

I am linking up with the lovely Leigh Kramer for this little reflection on what I’ve been into in May.

What I’m Reading:

Since I took two trips this month I had lots of plane/train/waiting room time for reading. I read 8 books so I won’t go into too much detail on each one.

The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo. This is a YA fantasy trilogy that I devoured. I thought it was great. Highly recommend for those who enjoy slightly lighter fantasies.

Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin. I’ve never read Rubin’s first book on happiness (The Happiness Project) so I can’t compare it, but this book was only all right for me. It was mostly her making a lot of resolutions which mostly made me feel tired and stressed rather than empowered. Maybe that’s just me.

Searching for Sunday by Rachel Held Evans. I wrote a full review on this here, but the short version is that I loved it and it’s had a huge impact on me as I look towards moving back to America and thinking about church.

Story Story: How I Found Ways to Make a Difference and Do Work I Love by Kola Olaosebikan. Kola recounts her winding path through the corporate world and then out of it as she searches for meaningful work. I could certainly relate to her winding path and appreciated how she addressed the practical issue of finances, something a lot of “I quit my job!” people never explain. I wish she’d explained more at the end about what she’s doing now, but this was a very quick read that reminded me I’m not alone in what feels like floundering about trying to find meaningful work. (As full disclosure, I was sent this book for free from the author).

Learning to Walk in the Dark by Barbara Brown Taylor. To be honest, this one wasn’t my favorite. It just felt a little more rambling than her other books, less focused and less insightful. I did appreciate the idea that darkness isn’t always sinister and that we shouldn’t expend so much energy trying to avoid hard emotions and instead let ourselves feel them.

The Middle Place by Kelly Corrigan. (Crossed this one off my “sitting on my kindle” list!) I really liked this memoir which is about being in the middle place between being a child and being a parent. Corrigan, a mother of 2, is diagnosed with breast cancer at the age of 36. As she goes through treatment, she relies heavily on her father who has always made her feel like the most important person in the world. When her father is diagnosed with cancer himself a few months after she is, Corrigan must deal with what it means to move from being the cared-for child to being the caretaker, for her children, for herself, and for her father. It’s a very moving book.

What I’m Watching:

Television we keep up with: Brooklyn Nine-Nine, new season of Community, and New Girl. Still watching The Good Wife, the occasional Friends or Bob’s Burgers and Graceland which just became available on Netflix. We finished Fresh Off the Boat, a big hit for us.

Last night I saw Pitch Perfect 2. The story was pretty generic and I didn’t find it nearly as funny as the first one, but the music was great! I watched two movies on airplanes, Still Alice (really good, but so sad) and Song One (also kind of sad). It was good, but nothing spectacular.

What I’m Eating:

Finally kicked it into gear and have been eating really well (aside from my travels). I started eating these banana pancakes most mornings that are literally just two eggs and a mashed banana. They are surprisingly delightful – they taste like banana french toast with just a slightly chewier texture.

I also tried a lot of Taiwanese and Japanese snack varietals while traveling, mostly with great success.

Follow me on Pinterest for more of what I’m cooking.

On the Internets:

Loved this Open Letter to the Church from Non-Mothers that came out around Mother’s Day.

And this from Sarah Bessey, “Why Not Let a Woman Preach.”

This list of 13 Things to Remember if You Love a Person with Anxiety because it is SPOT ON.

This post on God’s intense love for the Cosmos is beautiful.

Really really loved this post from one of my faves (Jamie, the very worst missionary) about prayer and remembering its purpose.

And this clip of Amy Schumer on Ellen which made me laugh so hard even on the 3rd viewing.

On the Blog:

This month I got to write two guest posts for friend. This one on Sacred Spaces and this one on Rituals. I also got to host a bunch of guest posts in my Thankful Thursday series from writers RoxJackie, Karissa, and Melchee

I continued my 52 Weeks of Adventure with our trip to Taiwan (parts 1 and 2), seeing an original musical, and going to Tokyo’s famous Robot Restaurant.

I wrote about what’s on my kindle, reviewed Searching for Sunday, and made a list of summer reading suggestions.

My most-viewed post this month was Karissa’s “I’m Thankful for my Body” guest post, followed by my post about living life in the in-between.

If you just can’t get enough of me, you can like my Facebook page, or follow me on Twitter and Instagram for more things I’m into.

Beauty Bits:

After much contemplation I sprang for the Urban Decay Naked eye shadow palette (the original one). This is my first high(er) end eye shadow palette and let me just tell you, it really is that much better than anything I’ve ever tried. I didn’t know eye shadow could be so creamy. It’s like my eyelids are covered with baby unicorn magic dust. For realz.

naked

What I’ve Been Up To:

Ugh. Trying to find a job. Job searching is the worst, but it’s especially unpleasant when you’re doing it from another country. Other than that, we’ve been trying to enjoy our favorite things about Korea as much as possible – going to favorite restaurants, taking walks, runs, and hikes, and hanging out with our friends.

As I mentioned before, we traveled to Taiwan and Tokyo this month which was bittersweet since those were our last trips before returning home. We’ve come to love traveling so much that it’s hard to think about going back to a life where international travel isn’t easy.

A IMG_8635

I’ve been on the ball about taking care of various tasks we need to do while still in Korea. For example, we went to the dentist last week even though that is my least favorite thing in the whole world. I think that is what you call “responsible,” thank you very much.

Also, I got this shirt in Tokyo (much to hubster’s chagrin) and I am very, very into it. For obvious reasons.

Best Shirt Ever

So, that’s me. What have you been up to?

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19 comments

  1. Lots of fun in this post!! I think we talked about this when we Skyped, but I don’t know if you’d consider Teach for America. I am not sure if you can choose your city, though – you’d have to check on that. But it’s a way to get into the classroom without an education degree. 🙂 That said, teaching in the US is really stressful right now. 😦

    Also I actually thought the Grisha Trilogy was pretty deep in some ways. There was so much there in the relationship between Alisha and the Darkling – I think they saw each other in the themselves. They were both a mix of dark and light, and in the end, Alisha was pretty much the only person who could give the Darkling grace and see that he was really just a boy who wanted to be loved. I think my connection was related to my thoughts about evil and grace and Christianity. I’m starting to think that the truth is we’re all a mix of good and bad versus we are all evil and can receive grace. Also, I think the treatment of Alisha as a saint was such a huge theme for me. Our society wants to lift up powerful people, but that wasn’t want Alisha needed or wanted. However it was interesting that when others revered her power, she began to use it more and believe in it herself – to the point where she went a little crazy. I made so many connections to power and leadership and society, and how power/leadership/privilege can change you. At the end (SPOILER if anyone is reading) when the her broke up and went into everyone, I loved it! She didn’t need the light for herself. It was ruining her.

    Okay, sorry I just wrote a book!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes to everything about The Grisha. I really thought it was fantastic. I gave them all 5 stars on Good Reads. The only reason I describe them as Fantasy-Lite is because of the first person narrator and because the world-building is less elaborate (not like its flimsy, just that in really epic fantasy it plays such a large role). I also thought the saint stuff was fascinating and that the ending really set this series apart from so many fantasy books. It’s one of the best I’ve ever read.
      About Teach for America – I haven’t really considered it for a few reasons. First, it’s so, so competitive (they only accept like 10% of applicants) and all my friends who have done it have described it as being a lot harder than teaching in a regular school setting, and most significantly it doesn’t pay well enough for us to be a single-income family. And as you said, I’m not sure if you can request your location.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I just realized I had ANOTHER typo. Good grief! At the end I meant to say when her light broke up. I know you got it . . . I am just obsessive compulsive and feel the need to correct myself. 🙂

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    1. Thanks. 🙂 But also, I spent the better part of 4 entire days traveling this month which equals 4 days where I was more or less sitting and reading. In a normal month I might read 4 books, but they are usually all under 300 pages and I read on my way to work and back and during any other time I’m on public transportation every single day. A normal day for me is 40 mins – 1hr of reading while in transport and then I’ll always read right before I go to sleep for however long I can keep my eyes open. 1 hr of reading per day for a whole month really adds up. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. i loved pitch perfect 2
    laughed out loud, a lot
    i do love the first one too, i like the build up of becca and jesse’s relationship though. my fave. (romantic here though)

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  3. aww YAY!! I don’t know how I totally missed this post earlier. It makes me so happy that you could relate to the desire to find meaningful work and that the financial part was useful ^_^ *doing my happy dance*. Really appreciate the review and feedback, Lily!!

    Like

  4. Thank you, I am enjoying your blog and looking forward to reading the kindle version of ‘Happier at Home’ as it fits my philosophy of enjoying where you are and what you have. Thanks for sharing.

    BTW: I recently mentioned you in a post of mine.

    Hugs!

    Like

    1. Thank you! I’m really glad you are enjoying it .I hope you enjoy Happier at Home. You’ll have to come back and let me know when you finish. And thanks for mentioning me! I really appreciate it!

      Like

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