The Best of May

Consumerism is not really something I feel the need or want to encourage on this blog but it seems almost intrinsic to the internet.  Online I am constantly bombarded with things to buy--things I didn't even know I wanted.  That said, some things really do make life better.  Here are a few new favorites of mine:

1.  Nashville
(The city, not the TV show.)  I had the opportunity to visit my old stomping grounds again for a continuing education trip, and I don't think I appreciate the city enough when I lived there.  The traffic amounts to nothing, it's not too far spread out, and it really is so pretty and green!  The restaurant offerings are pretty good too, if you know where to look.  It offers all the benefits of a big city without the traffic.  Are you sensing how much I dislike DC and Northern Virginia traffic?


2.  Alias
Dan and I finally finished the series.  After the third season, the show went downhill, and the fifth season really was a struggle to get through, but there is something about seeing a show through to the end.  If you need a show to binge-watch on Netflix, I highly recommend this one.  It is hard to stop with just one episode.  The series was made back when seasons had something like twenty-four episodes, so there is a lot of content to consume!

3.  Fresh herbs
Dan and I finally planted our (very small) fresh herb garden last weekend, and I look forward to having fresh basil and cilantro all summer long!  Little rivals sweet summer June tomatoes with basil and balsamic drizzle.


4.  A clean house
Gigi is already beginning to undo the efforts of the past long weekend, but for now, I am enjoying the efforts of our labor.  Everything needed a thorough scrubbing, and somehow restoring order and cleanliness around me makes makes me feel new.  Anyone else?


5.  Three minutes

You can do anything for three minutes, right?  That's what I tell myself.  My new attempt to follow a regular spiritual practice is to devote simply three minutes every day to doing whatever the spirit leads me to do: pray, meditate, be silent.  Divinity school and church work have taught me many things, but they have yet to make spiritual practices second nature to me (and honestly, I think that it will always be a struggle.  They are not calledpractices and disciplines for no reason).  But the three minutes each day have been good--realistic for me to observe and typically gratifying and refreshing.

6.  Goodreads
I have known about and used this service for a long time, but I thought it was worth mentioning.  It keeps track of all of the books that you have read along with your ratings and reviews.  You can follow others' reading activity if you want to find ideas from like-minded readers.  I try to bookmark all of the books that I would like to read on this site too so I don't end up with fifty different "want to read" lists in different places.

7.  Minted stationery
Minted is most known for its customized greeting cards but it also does stationery.  This might be one of my new go-tos for graduation and wedding gifts.  The pricing is reasonable (far cheaper than Crane) and the quality is impressive.  The southern girl inside of me gets excited every time I find a good thank you note.