{Monthly Miscellany} August

What a month, folks, what a month. I began it in Kansas, spent parts of it in various states in the East Coast, and am now ending it in Germany. But more on that later. Let’s start at the right place—with books. Of course.

{reading} 

I’m still trying to refine how I want this section to go, and because I didn’t read that many books this month (better than July, though!), I figured I have room to write a little summary of each. Here we go:

amazinggracecover

Amazing Grace // Eric Metaxas

This is one of the best non-fiction books I’ve read. Ever. I’d skimmed it once before, but actually reading it this time was incredibly rewarding. William Wilberforce is one of my heroes, and his story actually helped me make some big decisions as I looked at my future.

riserebellionshaara

Rise to Rebellion // Jeff Shaara

Rise to Rebellion was fantastic, as all Jeff Shaara books are. Plus, it was amazing to be reading about the American Revolution while I was visiting places like Boston and just after I’d read Alexander Hamilton’s biography.

originalscover

Originals // Adam Grant

Originals was another top-notch non-fiction read. Its subtitle is “How Non-Conformists Move the World”—right up my alley, with tons of fascinating stories and practical advice about how to literally change the world.

ToGetYou

To Get to You // Joanne Bischof

This doesn’t look like a book I’d normally read, but after I blogger I respect enjoyed it, I decided to give it a try. It was a great vacation read and so much more than just romance. I loved seeing the main character and his relationship with his father grow and heal.

twofromgalilee

Two From Galilee // Marjorie Holmes

This is an old book I picked up at my grandparents’. It’s the story of Mary and Joseph. Like many Bible retellings, some parts made me uncomfortable, but I did enjoy journeying with them through the crazy adventure God set them on.

Jerry_Spinelli_-_Stargirl

Stargirl // Jerry Spinelli

Ah, Stargirl. It’s about being yourself, being different, being shackled by desire for people’s approval. It’s challenging and beautiful and inspiring.

whenyoureachme

When You Reach Me (reread) // Rebecca Stead

Here’s an old favorite of mine, and if any of you have not read it yet, you must. Simple as that. It’s mind-bending and fascinating and powerful. I love the humanity of the characters and how it challenges the way we think about time and how the world works.

And the million-dollar question: Have you read any of these? What did you think of them?

{writing} 

*maniacal laughing that fades away as I flee this question*

Okay, I did do one thing: I created a Stuff-to-Keep-Track-of-So-I-Stay-Sane document for Phoenix and listed characters, places, and words/phrases that I made up for that world. I also wrote down some notes about things I want to change or include when I go back through it and edit. Although, now that I think about it, that might have happened at the end of July. I’m not sure. Heh.

Anyway, I did enjoy blogging on here, and I’m thankful that I was able to keep it up while traveling. I love interacting with you guys, and sticking to my blogging schedule helped me feel more stable and normal in the midst of the craziness.

{music}

Oh, it was a good music month, folks. I discovered two amazing new songs (look below), plus Switchfoot came out with a new album. Ahhhhh, so much happiness. So much goodness. I may have to devote a whole separate post to it later. We’ll see. Anyhow, you gotta love friends who introduce you to masterpieces like these:

“To the Dreamers” // For King & Country

The music is catchy and the lyrics are perfect—what more could you ask for?

“Saturn” // Sleeping at Last

This song, guys. This song. Oh my storms, I love it so much. I’ve played it on repeat basically this whole vacation. The cello + piano sound is absolutely gorgeous, and the lyrics literally stopped my heartbeat when I first listened to them. Please, please listen to it. Look up the lyrics. And watch its amazing video.

{life}

Whoo, boy. Okay. So my family is moving, which I’m pretty sure you all know by now, but just to clarify. From Kansas to Germany. Yeah. I’m terribly excited, but it’s been crazy and a tiny bit stressful all the same. Thank God for bringing us out safely on the other side.

We left Kansas early August and spent several weeks touring colleges, visiting friends and family, and—most importantly—going to the beach. The colleges thing was super exciting and also a little freaky, like ohmywordthisisreallyhappening?! It also stressed me out a little, but I’m trying to remember that I don’t have to make any decisions until this spring—and you never know, God might make it easy for me by not letting me get in to some places. Anyway, I’m so thankful for those opportunities.

And the beach! The beach. I’m in love with the beach. The ocean, the sand, the horizon, the shells, the waves … the beach. I saw God’s love for me so clearly in letting me go back and have several good days there.

And now? Now I’m in Germany, a little majorly jet-lagged, overwhelmed, and excited. I can’t wait to live in a house again, ditch the suitcase, and settle into normal life.

{blogging}

Hello and Goodbye and All the Moments in Between // on moving and relationships

{Fireside Fridays} My Favorite Settings in Fiction Books // basically … that

Star-making // a haiku

{Fireside Fridays} The Book That Terrified Me // art and faith and terrible choices I might face

I Am the Girl With the To-Do List // and why that isn’t a good thing

{Fireside Fridays} My Five Favorite Books for Teen Girls // book reviews

Into the Mist  // a memoir musing sketch thing

{Fireside Fridays} 5 Reasons Why Ebooks Help You Read More // pretty self-explanatory

{quotes} 

Ooh, let’s see. Several of the books I read had some great quotes. Here’s a sampling:

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.”

~ Margaret Mead in Adam Grant’s Originals 


She’s alone, they kept telling themselves, and surely she danced in no one’s arms, yet somehow that seemed to matter less and less. As the night went on, and clarinet and coyote call mingled beyond the lantern light, the magic of their own powder-blue jackets and orchids seemed to fade, and it came to them in small sensations that they were more alone than she was.

~ Jerry Spinelli, Stargirl


[George Whitefield] saw that the Bible didn’t teach that we must work harder at booming perfect and holy, but that we must instead throw ourselves on God’s mercy. Moral perfection wasn’t the answer: Jesus was the answer. Jesus had been morally perfect and we weren’t supposed to save ourselves—we were supposed to ask him to save us.

~ Eric Metaxas, Amazing Grace

So, good readers—how was your August? What does September hold for you? What did you think of the songs? Let’s have one last summertime chat!

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11 thoughts on “{Monthly Miscellany} August

  1. I like the term “Stuff-to-Keep-Track-of-So-I-Stay-Sane” document. I don’t know why. It just amuses me.
    I, sadly, haven’t read any of the books on your list. There’s a million books I haven’t read- but just you wait. (I’M SORRY I COULDN’T RESIST.)
    And best of luck with figuring out the whole college thing. (Cedarville, for the record, is an awesome school. If you’re not considering it, you should be. *hint hint*) And I can’t wait to hear about life in Germany from you. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Haha, glad to be of some amusement. *bows*
      Hamilton references, yesssss. And that particular one is really so applicable to reading.
      Thank you! Haha, many people have told me that. I actually was considering it for a long time because it has the major I want. We’ll see. *wiggles eyebrows* And thank you! It’s encouraging when other people are excited and interested in it.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “I created a Stuff-to-Keep-Track-of-So-I-Stay-Sane document…” Do you mean a glossary? 😉

    Holy cow, a move from Kansas to Germany?? Wow. That’s… huge. Not just in terms of distance, also from one culture to another. The important thing, though, is that you have a positive attitude, so that should help as you transition into your new home and country. Do you think you’ll write some posts about Germany in the future?

    And college applications! Gosh, I don’t miss that time, trying to have all those ducks in a row on top of my studies, dance lessons, and other things. But like what you’re planning, I didn’t formally decide on a college until after I had narrowed it down to two (out of the 6 that had accepted me) and visited them again. One of them was too claustrophobic for my liking; the one felt like home, and I met one of the professors I ended up having in the fall. It was a no-brainer in the end.

    Good luck with your application process and decision! Do you know what you want to major in? Or are you going to wait until you’ve taken some classes to choose it?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, that’s the word I was looking for. =P I knew there was a word but couldn’t think of it.
      I hope so! References to it will probably pop up in a bunch of my posts, even if they’re not solely about Germany. And yes, it is a big deal. Fortunately, I’ve lived in Germany before (although we lived near way more Americans than we do now), so it feels slightly less daunting.
      Ah, I’m glad it was an easy decision. That’s encouraging to hear that other people wait to decide too. One step at a time.
      Thank you! I want to major in some kind of communications/professional writing. It’s a slightly less common major, which has helped me narrow down choices. =D

      Liked by 1 person

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