a catch-up 7 quick takes

For a variety of reasons I haven't been able to post the last couple of weekends, so here's a quick catch-up on what I've been up to lately: places, people, books, podcasts, music, links & more.

(1) Austin friends who visited us this month

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This sweet family (also holding the awesome last name of Murphy) is forever written on our hearts and we loved the evening we got to share with them - even though October in New England was shorts-weather.

(2) photos of the end of a memorable season

Thanks to Aunt Young-Mee (and her generous friends), Natalie and Brian got to see Game 5 of the ALCS live at Yankees stadium.

Thanks to Aunt Young-Mee (and her generous friends), Natalie and Brian got to see Game 5 of the ALCS live at Yankees stadium.

Our brother-in-law Wes and nephew Griffin drove in from Philadelphia to watch the game with Natalie & Brian.

Our brother-in-law Wes and nephew Griffin drove in from Philadelphia to watch the game with Natalie & Brian.

Even though the Yankees didn't make it to the final series, they managed to be the focus of a season Natalie and Brian will never forget. I wrote about it here: Heading Home

(3) books I'm reading right now

Constable Evans series by Rhys Bowen (3 books down, 7 to go!)

An Unhurried Life: Following Jesus' Rhythms of Work and Rest by Alan Fadling (for my Spiritual Direction course)

Crafting Words in a Culture of Lies by Marilyn Chandler McEntyre (re-reading with our church's reading group)

(4) recent favorite Cities,Towns, & Neighborhoods links

Follow my Cities, Towns, & Neighborhood board on Pinterest

Busting 4 Common Myths About the Suburbs | via Strong Towns

Lost in Supermarket, part 1 & part 2 - on the wrong way to eliminate food deserts | via Strong Towns

Mobile homelandWhatever you call it—mobile home, trailer park, manufactured housing, the retro living module is undergoing a renaissance. | via Curbed

How about re-thinking a cultural icon? The front lawn - "According to NASA, there are 40 million acres of turf grass in the United States — lawn, in a sense, is our largest crop."  | via Chicago Tribune

(5) photos from our Catskill Mountain get-away

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With our move to a new place this past summer, Brian and I felt like we didn't enter the fall with the kind of physical "reset" we needed. We took a couple of days to get away to a cozy, little Airbnb in the Catskill Mountains. Even though we both grew up in central New York state, and a some of our family members a few generations back lived in the area, we've never spent much time exploring the region. Our cottage was decent (especially the wood stove), but probably our favorite part was driving through the back roads. On our way back to Connecticut we stopped at this extension to the Walkill Valley Rail Trail - the Rosendale Trestle. While the tree colors weren't yet at peak, the day was still completely gorgeous. I can see us exploring more of the region over the years.

(6) blog posts from the archives

2015 - Thoughts on the "Art of the Commonplace" by Wendell Berry & Our Attempts to Love Texas ("In that transition of leaving one place and arriving at the next, we've had to figure out our role.  When we still call a city other than the one we live in home, we want to also establish our full selves in this new city. ")

2014 - A Few [incomplete] Thoughts on the Sacred Practice of Sabbath ("Growing up requires me to recognize that good gifts come with responsibility.  My having to work full time, or lose sleep over my kids being flung hither and yon into adulthood, or deal with anxiety related to becoming a priest's wife, or roll up my sleeves to invest in this healthy worship community, or start eating more vegetables and fewer tacos are all decisions grown up people make in order to steward the abundance of good gifts that come down like lights from the Father.")

2013 - Tiny Stories #4 & #5: When Did You First Notice the One You Love? & What Is the Meaning of Your Name? (I had fun with this little blog series, and would love to try it again someday. For now, don't miss my adorable grandparents talking about their teen years or my sister talking about her daughter's middle name.)

2011 - The Abundance of 'Also'  (Some life-changing lessons from my first silent retreat.)

2010 - Top 10 When Company's Coming (A guest post from my Mom about the Top 10 Things she still has to tell herself when company's coming, and the Top 1 most important thing she's learned in offering hosptiality.)

2010 - Barefoot hospitality (Some of what I learned about creating a gentle interior life that makes a safe space to bless others.)

(7) nostalgic Halloween costume illustrations

We have lots of happy AND lots of stressful Halloween memories. This year - without a porch or yard - we didn't even buy a pumpkin! We still managed to buy candy, however.  

No matter how you're spending the day, hope it's enjoyable!  

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19 years ago






Halloween 1998 - Oh, the memories!

May your week include something to celebrate!

p.s. This post may contain affiliate links because I'm trying to be a good steward, and when you buy something through one of these links you don't pay more money, but in some magical twist of capitalism we get a little pocket change. Thanks!