I’m currently training for the annual Jingle Bell 5k, a tradition I’ve kept up for fours years running now. But as pathetic as my preparation has been, that’s not really the “out of shape” to which my title refers. While I definitely have to keep on top of my physical activity to keep my body in shape, it also takes intentionality to keep my brain and spirit in shape.
Every year, people make promises to themselves that they don’t keep. Heck, that probably happens every day. But in nearly a month, people all over the world are going to make promises to themselves at a rate far exceeding any other time of year. Why? New Years Resolutions. I’ve made a few resolutions of my own in the past. Some that come to mind include:
- Read My Bible Every Day
- Work Out 5 Days A Week
- Eat More Vegetables
- Insert Health/Spiritual Related Resolution Here
Every year, it’s the same story: Continue reading
A couple of years ago, while traveling for my work, I discovered a dish that blew my culinary mind. I discovered pho (pronounced fuh). Pho is a Vietnamese noodle soup that is known for having a ridiculously aromatic broth and fresh ingredients throughout the dish. Since my original pho discovery, I have felt obligated to try it in nearly every city I visit. Some of my favorite spots have included: Simply It (Chicago, IL) and Vietnam Cafe (Kansas City, MO). As you can see from my two selected favorites, it can be difficult to find pho around these parts. You may find this shocking, but Marion, Indiana is not quite an international culinary powerhouse. So, I decided I just had to try to make it on my own. The result? Good, but not great. Great will have to come on another try.
The ingredient list for the recipe I used included some of the following: Continue reading
Recognize the origins of this post’s title? It’s from one of my all-time favorite Christmas songs– to which I did allude in a post last week– “It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year”. Despite being my favorite though, it seems I didn’t have all the lyrics down straight. Tyler had to dissuade me a few weeks ago from singing “there’ll be hot dogs for roasting, marshmallows for toasting…” Turns out it’s actually parties for hosting, instead of hot dogs for roasting. For some of us… that’s the same thing. So I don’t feel too bad.
To continue along in my Christmas cheer– however misguided– I decided to get a respectable start on Christmas cards this year. We went with Minted again, an online community of designers that offers hundreds of customizable paper goods options from wedding suites to holiday cards to art prints. Our Christmas cards last year also doubled as our save-the-dates, and we had tons of compliments on them. This year we went with a slightly less customized option, so I wanted to personalize it some other way.
When the cards arrived, I was just as thrilled with them in person as on the computer screen, but I was disappointed with the fact that you could see– albeit faintly– the card through the envelope. This was strange since the envelopes Minted provides are super thick and great quality. My first instinct was to create envelope liners (which you can buy directly from Minted), but then I ended up going a totally different direction. A cheaper and most sustainable direction.
I painted on jolly berries and holly!
I’m not one of those complicated, mixed-up cats. I’m not looking for the secret to life… I just go on from day to day, taking what comes.
Sinatra was definitely not referring to cats of the whisker-and-tail variety, but I’d say it’s a pretty fitting quote for our baby boy as well. It’s been awhile since we’ve shared much of Hobbes. He’s still here though.. lounging around like usual.. and fitting in the occasional playtime shenanigan.
^^^ I went for a run yesterday and along the way I passed this house. Such a fascinating place to me. It’s been like this for awhile, a reminder of what Marion is like, even in a nicer neighborhood like ours. A sad skeleton, but with tiny– and very odd– attempts at repair.
^^^ Then later that night, the sunset stole the thunder from our slightly unkempt backyard view. Nature’s beauty has a way of redeeming even the harshest of environments. Thanks God.
Winter has officially arrived.
It came out of nowhere. One day I was just rolling through autumn, and the next I woke up to a fresh frosting of snow.