It’s time to share some of the good stuff I’ve been enjoying lately.
I’ve been loving Emily P. Freeman’s podcast, The Next Right Thing. All her recent episodes have been hitting me in all the best ways. Not to mention she has such a soothing voice and at 15 or so minutes I can easily get it on a busy day. Her messages are a great reminder on how to focus my days and my work.
Also, the last audiobook the kids and I finished up was Navigating Early. Wow, was that book ever good! I’m really glad we did audio over reading it because I think that really helped add to the experience. All the kids loved it and I did too. It’s the type of book that has so many layers! I’m sure I was getting things out of it they weren’t. For instance, I loved the whole “epic quest” aspect that is reminiscent of so many other great books like The Odyssey or The Lord of the Rings. Yet is was uniquely American.
Thus far this year I really enjoyed Winter Solstice by Rosamunde Pilcher. I tried reading it a year ago and it just didn’t resonate with me and I didn’t get very far. This year I stuck with it. It still took a while to hook me but it really did. I teared up at the beautiful ending. I also just finished The Witch of Blackbird Pond. Newbery Award books never disappoint and I loved this novel just as much as I did when I read it when I was a girl–maybe even more! I’m always a bit nervous to return to a book I loved as a kid. Sometimes they don’t hold up to age and time, but this one did.
For Christmas I got the BEST book light ever! I’ve tried several different types in the past and this one is way better than any I’ve ever had. It’s the Mighty Bright. It’s bright, but dimmable, and has stays put and the neck isn’t flimsy.
The current Netflix series I’ve been LOVING is Longmire. Who would think I’d love a Western? Not me. But it has the things I realize I love about a show: strong lead characters, a unique location, and an overarching mystery. I’m also fascinated by the race relations between the Cheyenne tribe on the reservation and the rest of the community and law enforcement. Also, Walt Longmire has an aspect to his character I really like. Kind of reminds me of a bit more broken, more western version of Inspector Gamache. If you try it, give it more than one episode. They get better and better as they go.
Last week I made BBQ Chicken Tacos and we all agreed they were delicious and nice twist on the standard taco. For the Super Bowl a friend made these French Onion Beef Sliders and they were so incredibly flavorful. A great way to feed a crowd. And this week I’m looking forward to making these Sugar Cookie Bars for Valentine’s Day!
Longmire sounds interesting! Steve and I are finishing season 2 of The Crown right now but might have to check that one out when we’re done. I also want to check out that Amazon series I’ve been hearing about though – The Marvelous Mrs Maisel, or something like that?
I don’t listen to podcasts often but I’m on a Malcolm Gladwell kick, between his audiobooks and the Revisionist History podcast. He’s such a brilliant storyteller. Also, an online friend of mine started this informal parenting podcast that’s really great, so I’m trying to get caught up on that.
I’ll have to give Rosamunde Pilcher another try – I have another friend who LOVES her novels. I picked one up a few years ago, and it was OK, but the length was so daunting–all I could think about was all the other books I could read in the time it would take me to get through just that one.
The Witch of Blackbird Pond was a childhood favorite for me too! Good to know it holds up. I own a copy but haven’t revisited in decades. That and Island of the Blue Dolphins were some of the few actually high quality children’s lit I was exposed to at the time 😛
I started off the year with some great books but have had a couple of duds here lately. Took a break from the Gamache series but will probably get back to it soon.