month in review: 10/14

When’s the last time I did a Month in Review post? Why, it was January 2013!

I’ve been reading Brene Brown’s Daring Greatly and in it she cites research that indicates that those who are acutely aware of what they’re grateful for are more contented. That makes a lot of sense to me, but often I’d rather not “waste” time contemplating the good things; I’d rather distract myself with activities or blogs or online shopping. But I’ve been feeling awfully restless and discontent for no real reason, so I think it’s time to give this another try.

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In October, I (often with Daniel in tow):

  • coordinated the thrift shop’s anniversary sale
  • attended a beautiful wedding
  • partied it up at a friend’s birthday party
  • visited with college friends who came to visit
  • picked apples at Carter Mountain Orchard
  • ate delicious, home cooked apple pie thanks to the friends who came to visit
  • sight saw on Skyline Drive on a foggy day
  • sang a solo part in the church choir
  • moved my fair trade blog over to Blogger (and got 1,070 views in the first month!)
  • wrote about lessons learned working at a thrift shop
  • went on my church’s 2nd annual hike
  • helped secure funding for the thrift shop’s maintenance fund
  • watched Fright Night with friends on Halloween
  • started reading Silence by Shusaku Endo
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2nd annual Canterbury hike

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I spent Saturday in the mountains with my church’s college group. You may remember that I went on the same hike last year and really enjoyed it.

We read Psalms, closed our eyes and listened to the gentle shhh of wind through leaves, and had Eucharist on the mountaintop.

Focused breathing up steep paths is a special sort of meditation. It’s so very rare for me to be able to let go of daily stresses and live in the moment for hours at a time, but something about Shenandoah does it for me. I was distracted by panoramic views, new friends, and the marvelous way the body adapts to uneven terrain. It was a lovely and exhausting day.

 

skyline drive with mary

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Mary and I have been friends for nearly 10 years. We met our junior year of high school, attended college together, and were roommates for a year and a half. She came up to visit last month, so naturally we went to Skyline Drive. It’s one of the most impressive parts of this state and I’m lucky to live so close to it. I especially love the foggy haze and flash storms that visit the mountains in summertime. It’s like exploring a primordial rain forest.

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monthly goals: october

I’ve been manic for the past few days. I have this sudden urge to do, make, complete. But it feels unhealthy, because I’m never satisfied and I’m always on edge. Perhaps starting up a Monthly Goals post series will redirect my activity to something a bit more satisfying.

october must list

October Goals:

  • List items for Platinum & Rust every week.
  • Go to Carter Mountain Orchard.
  • Visit Skyline Drive and take lots of photos.
  • Find a nice candle and burn it often.
  • Finish painting bookshelves and get the library back in order.
  • Watch Hocus Pocus while eating homemade popcorn.
  • Cut my bangs.

What are your goals this month? 

at the skyline

blue ridge moutains love queen anne's lace frolicking girl in wildflower fieldbee on wildflower skyline drive mountain overlook yellow swallowtail butterflymountainsTaylor and I became fast friends this summer. She’s moving to Georgia at the end of the week and I wanted the chance to meet her husband, newly arrived from Wales, before they departed. I took the day off and we all took a trip to Skyline Drive.

We saw wildflowers galore, dozens of butterflies, bees harvesting nectar for Wildflower Honey, deer, a turkey, a groundhog, and panoramic mountain scenes. We even got the chance to stop in to the Visitor’s Center to purchase some memorabilia; while perusing the gift shop, we witnessed a Junior Ranger excitedly – and somewhat bashfully – getting sworn in. We clapped for the new ranger, exchanged group photos with a family parked at one of the overlooks, and marveled, once again, at the breathtaking Blue Ridge Mountains.

 

october moodboard

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Before the month is over, I intend to enjoy:

  • Making use of my scarf collection
  • Comfy cardigans and flattering jeans worn out in the lovely, mildly cool weather
  • The printed tees I’ve added to my wardrobe lately
  • My gray, second-hand Minnetonka moccasins
  • Crossbody Vera Bradley bags, perfect for adventures
  • Old school Madeline L’Engle books and literature on Christian Feminism
  • My ballet classes; I wish I could go more than once a week
  • Hot chocolate and mochas
  • The colorful fall landscape along Skyline Drive