Good, True, Beautiful: Week 31

To Read: Articles

The Summer of Magical Longing // John Blase // “At one point the line, “Did you think we’d stay kids forever?” knifed me straight in the heart. Will kept trying to hang on for another round of magic. But you can’t stop time.

I sensed I was meant to watch season three all by my lonesome. Predestined? Well, I try not to use fancy words like that, but maybe so. Had I watched this season with my kids, I’ve no doubt the longing would have still been there but it would have been muted by their shoulders pressed against mine, and their glorious laughter in my ears. Their absence heightened it like the Mind Flayer flailing around on the roof of the Starcourt Mall. Impossible to miss.”

Chance The Rapper ‘The Big Day’ 1 Listen Album Review // Yoh Phillips // I enjoyed listening through the new album on my own, and then again while simultaneously reading through Yoh’s one-listen reaction article—which goes song by song. He helps draw out sounds, themes, and artistic elements  within each track I may not have otherwise noticed or appreciated.

The Crane Wife // CJ Hauser // “We cruised past small islands, families of pink roseate spoonbills, garbage tankers swarmed by seagulls, fields of grass and wolfberries, and I realized it was not that remarkable for a person to understand what another person needed.”

Surrendering a Shoebox // Abby Perry // “I still know the sadness of having a dream dashed, but I no longer carry a heart made sick by deferred hope. Now, I see the death of one desire giving birth to so many others—

being the best mother possible to one child with medical needs and one without, supporting foster families in ways I never could have if my own home had been full of foster children, expanding my definition of stewardship.”

4 Tips for Setting Up a Windowsill Garden // Brian Barth // It never hurts to freshen up on helpful tips for cultivating thriving–not dying–plants. A lot of mine have died in the summer heat (RIP) so I may start some new indoor herbs.

Catholicism: Empowering Women for 2000 Years (Part IV: “My Body Isn’t Broken,” The Church and Contraception) // Haley Stewart // This is last in her four-part series on the ways women are honored, valued, and empowered in Catholicism. I found each one fascinating. This one in particular really resonated. (I’m a tad jealous of Catholicism’s consistent teachings on ethics.)

Can We Justify Bringing Children into This Dark World? // Haley Stewart // “Without believing that God has not abandoned us, how could one justify having children?

…What we must look to is the complicated and often misunderstood virtue of hope.

What holier protest against evil is there than the glory of new life? Each baby is hope incarnate. Perhaps the most courageous protest we can make in a dark world is to fill the darkness with the light of new life.”?

Slant Letter: The Life-Changing Magic of Going Plural // Stephanie Smith // “If you want your writing to strike deep chords in your reader, you have to master the skill of bridging from your individual story to the universal human story in which we all share.”

 

To Read: Books

No books were completed this week! // Stay tuned, good people. I continue to make my way through some good ones.

To Watch

Inherit The Earth // From what I’ve seen of Christian Schultz directing work, it’s all excellent and purposeful—leaving you with ideas to mull over, and emotions to grapple with.

Reading Rainbow Remixed: In Your Imagination // What a gem.

To Listen: Music

Duke Ellington — In a Sentimental Mood // Piano jazz at it’s finest. You’ll feel instantly calmed and classy.

Duke Ellington & John Coltrane // This iconic jazz artist duo brings together both piano and saxophone. It’s as lovely as you think it’d be.

Haim — Days Are Gone // We all need some energetic, catchy girl band tunes every now and then.

Julia Michaels // She’s apparently the pop star I wasn’t aware of. I follow some filmmakers and Micah Bickham shared their finished video for “Hurt Again”. It’s excellent.

Chance the Rapper — The Big Day // I enjoyed listening through on my own, and then again while simultaneously reading through Yoh’s one-listen reaction article (linked above) which goes song by song. He helps draw out sounds, themes, and artistic elements  within each track I may not have otherwise noticed or appreciated.

To Listen: Audio

The Joe Rogan Experience: Andrew Yang // Jakob and I enjoyed this lengthy interview with Andrew Yang, the Democratic Candidate running on the platform of Universal Basic Income. It’s personable and fascinating.

To Make

Chicken + Cheese Enchiladas // Friends of ours recently had a baby, so it was fun to make a dish we’d never actually made together.

Baked Sweet Potatoes // They’re delicious with butter and salt.

To Cultivate

Love of Location-Specific Art  // I’ve enjoyed this fan account of Julian Onderdonk, a Texan Impressionist painter often called “the father of Texas painting.” (You must know I lived in San Antonio for three years from 2013-2016. I love Texas with my whole heart.)

Making Time, Taking Time // In hindsight, it’s easy to be grateful for relationships that are formed through time spent together. In the moment, for me at least, it can get overwhelming with lots of time spent with people and less time recharging and refreshing alone.

All that to say, I’m still learning how to plan our weeks and communicate my needs well in this regard. This is beneficial so that I can make the most of the time with people I care about, while also taking sufficient time alone so that I can be the best version of myself for others.

All that to say, I’m grateful for being invited over to homes for dinner, Cardinals vs. Astros games n St. Louis, walking little Pre-K kids through the parables of Jesus, and celebrating friends with going-away parties and dinners out in the warm air downtown.

 

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