a few (more) things in January

I have the February cranks. The winter grumpies. The pre-spring meanies.

What I am really into right now is sun.  Sun on my skin.  

Instead, the world is grey and white, and I'm trying my best to stay happy. Staying happy includes sneaking bites of frozen chocolate cake and having an afternoon french press of coffee; but also starting a pilates class with friends this week. 

(I'm getting dangerously close, still, to putting blond highlights in my hair and getting a tanning bed membership.  Sun. Warmth. Skin.)

I'm only teaching one class this semester, and it started last week.  I've got double the enrollment I had last semester, which will make for some long nights of grading, but I'm glad to be teaching.

Here are a few other things I've been enjoying lately:


Still by Lauren Winner. I read Winner's other books 6-8 years ago, when they came out, and loved them.  One of my happiest memories is sitting in a gazebo in Thailand at sunset, reading parts of Mudhouse Sabbath out loud with my girlfriends.  But I have mixed feelings about Still. It just didn't sit quite right with me.

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. This is a YA novel about teens with cancer.  Still with me?  Good.  This made me laugh, cry, and stop and think.  It's lovely. (And the author lives in Indianapolis! Go Indiana.)

Currently Reading: The Blind Contessa's New Machine by Carey Wallace; The Writer's Notebook: Craft Essays from Tin House; Everyday Justice by Julie Clawson


Pitch Perfect - I watched this fun teenybopper comedy about a college show choir one blue afternoon after seeing some twitter friends chirp about it.  
To Rome With Love - this newest Woody Allen movie wasn't worth finishing, for us :-(
The Dark Knight Rises - enjoyable, if not as good as Nolan's first two Batman movies.


I have to admit that I love Nashville.  I just do.  I love the music, and I want Connie Britton's hair. Other than that, we are staying current on: Downton Abbey, Suburgatory (really the funniest sitcom that no one is watching), Parks and Rec, The Mindy Project, New Girl, Bunheads, and sometimes The Colbert Report. We're on season four of Foyle's War (on Amazon Prime), which I love, and I also love falling asleep to.  Is that a lot?  Yeah, that's a lot.  


Since Iron and Wine announced  their new album coming this April, we've been obsessively listening to old Iron and Wine stuff. I also find Bon Iver pretty perfect for dark winter days.  For the kids, I love turning on the Elizabeth Mitchell Pandora Station (stream it through the tv via Roku), and Rosie has been falling asleep every night listening to Lullabies by Page CXVI.


I've started writing a few times a week for Christ and Pop Culture.  So far I've written about reviving the tradition of the boarding house and about abortion, feminism, and feelings.  I won't link to all my pieces here, so if you're interested in keeping up with them, you can follow me on twitter, or subscribe to their blog.

I'm also going to contribute occasionally to a lovely new website called Renew and Sustain.  Today I'm sharing my homemade deodorant recipe over there!

I've read some truly wonderful things online recently.  Check these out:

  • Prizes and Consumables: The Superbowl as a Theology of Women by Matthew Voss
    " The way we consume iconic national events like the Super Bowl better depicts what we really believe about women and their so-called roles than do our formal theological statements, denominational position papers, teachings about the spiritual disciplines, and admonitions toward modesty and fidelity. For in the invisibility of normality, there we find our idolatry."
  • Educated Beyond My Level of Obedience by Danielle Vermeer
    "The speaker started confidently, explaining how “females are always a sellable commodity because…,” before pausing to think how to word his response, “because of the depravity of man.” From a Christian perspective, yes, sinfulness is the root of this evil. But saying that human trafficking exists because of our sinful nature is not the most precise answer, nor it is the most actionable."
  • War Photographer: How Free Do I Have the Right To Be? by JR Goudeau
    "Any act of simplification is also an act of violence.  The expectations of the audience who is reading these representations, whether it be Hill Tribers’ customers or mission-board members or Facebook friends, affect the way we portray people. It is something I constantly resist—the desire to play up my friends’ poverty and their gratefulness and downplay the difficulties we have in relating to each other. I have to recognize the conversation I’m entering and my own position of power within it...It’s hard. And yet, translation is important. The representation of poverty is important. The telling of these stories is important. This struggle to be an effective, ethical, aesthetically-pleasing, economically-helpful translator war photographer is important.

In My Kitchen

Successfully made yogurt for the first time, thanks to a hand-me-down yogurt maker.  It's delicious.  Jack's on a gluten-free kick, which I did for two weeks and then quit.  But I'm still cooking gluten-free dinners.

In My Life...

We've been renting our current home for two and a half years, and we just found out that we will have to move out by May 31.  So we will be jumping back into the (sort of deplorable) house hunt quite quickly here.  Prayers gratefully accepted.

(I'm linking this up with What I'm Into at Hopeful Leigh... I've been doing these posts for a while and never been on the right schedule to join the link up, but here goes!)

What I'm Into at HopefulLeigh