1. Book-wise, I most recently finished The Case for Jamie, by Brittany Cavallaro, the third in her Charlotte Holmes series. I mentioned the series before, a riff on Sherlock Holmes that presents Sherlock and Watson as real people, and James (Jamie) and Charlotte Holmes as their great-great grandkids. It's a fun series, and although I didn't enjoy the second book as much, book three was a really fantastic follow-up - almost as though book two was a necessary set up, a crisis that readers had to get through to get to the next part of the story. I noticed that the fourth book is coming out next month, so I better go put my name on the holds list at the library!
Aside from the Cavallaro book, this article -- "How to Grow Wool" -- seriously blew my mind with its beautiful imagery of God as a shepherd.
2. In honor of Valentine's Day last week I'm going to link to this song: "You'll Always Be My Girl", by Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors. It's not a new song, but it is currently one of my favorite love songs, and one I could listen to on repeat for days.
I'm also linking to an episode of the podcast The Enneagram Journey: Episode 47 with Audrey Assad. Even if you're not familiar the Enneagram personality typing system/philosophy, this is a really wonderful interview with a musician that I wasn't familiar with, but who I am now listening to all.the.time.
3. The past couple of weeks I've been really grateful that I've signed up to run a half marathon. That sounds weird to a lot of people, I know, but I'm grateful for the training plan that helps me push myself in my running. I know a lot of people don't love running -- and that's fine! I'm not going to try and proselytize you -- but it's something that makes me feel better mentally and physically, and training for a race just amps that up a little.
4. As for something challenging...a minor annoyance really, but still an annoyance: our utility district is doing maintenance on the fire hydrants, which means all last week and all this week (M-F only, thank goodness) we can't turn on our faucets or run the washing machine between 8 a.m. and 3 p.m. or run the risk of drawing in the minerals that can discolor the water. We're making do with cups and pitchers full of water, and it's not a huge deal (and only an issue since the kids aren't in full time school and I don't go off to work), since at the end of the day we still have clean, running water. But it's just one more thing taking up brain space (remembering to alter our behavior), and it's enough of a challenge that I'll be glad when 3 p.m. Friday hits.
5. "This [Matthew 5:1-12] is an announcement, not a philosophical analysis of the world. It is gospel -- an announcement of wonderful news, of good news, not good advice." - N.T. Wright, Matthew for Everyone