Soul Food {January 2016}

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This new year has already been one of wild amounts of growth and rebirth for me. I’m learning more about myself every day, and I have to say: I’m into it. I’m happy with where I am and where I’m going. Allow me to share some little things I took with me on this adventure the first month of what is already a big year.

MusicColony House

  • “Moving Forward” by Colony House. My favorite band, speaking life and hope into me, reminding me what matters.
  • “Lonely Nation” by Switchfoot. Classic Switchfoot has a special place in my heart, and the lyrics become more and more meaningful for me as I grow.
  • “This Is What It Feels Like” by Armin van Buuren ft. Trevor Guthrie, the Antillas & Dankann radio edit. This song came up on my favorite Pandora station, and I just have such a good time listening to it. I know dance/electronic music isn’t everyone’s cuppa, but I’m realizing it is very much mine. I listened to so much this month. Speaking of which…
  • “Youth” by Foxes, the M3H trap remix. Simple and fun to move to. I exercise by freestyle dancing by myself, and this is one of my go-to songs for that. I also just really like music about embracing the life you have.
  • Louisa Wendorff’s mashup/cover of “Magic” and “Adore You,” featuring Devin Dawson. Louisa is flawless in her mashup skills; she makes songs flow together so beautifully and brings passion to the entire piece. Such a fan of hers.
  • “Heart of Gold” by Neil Young. My dad has me listen to his favorite musicians with him sometimes, saying he wants me to learn where it all comes from. This is one of my favorites we’ve ever listened to together. So thoughtful, genuine, sweet.
  • “Age of Worry” by John Mayer. This song has consistently been a comfort to me. “Dream your dreams, but don’t pretend; make friends with what you are.”
  • “In The Wind” by Lord Huron. Wondrous. I don’t have words for it; it makes me soar inside.
  • BridgeCity’s “Christ Be Glorified” album. Usually “worship bands” don’t make music that I would want to listen to on a regular basis, if I’m being honest. This album is an exception. It is original and genuine and isn’t musically boxed in. I’m grateful for it. My favorite songs from it are “Light a Fire” “Christ Be Glorified” and “God You Are Good.”
  • “Hideaway” by Kyko. This song carries a happy atmosphere and more dance opportunities; it makes we want to go on a road trip with my best friends.
  • “Youth” by Troye Sivan. Just so well done. I love singing along, especially to the line, “My youth is yours.” I know he didn’t write it as a surrender prayer, but I like that it can be that for me. [Also, I just realized this is the second song on this list named “Youth,” so that’s a thing.]
  • “Please Don’t Go” by Joel Adams. From the humming, to the beautiful tempo, to the emotion he threads into his voice, this song is just gorgeous. It holds such soul in it. I’m obsessed.
  • “Shot Heard ‘Round the World” by Disciple. I forget how much I love them, which is a lot. My mom was playing this album in the house and I started moshing by myself in the kitchen.
  • Pen Pals’ “Gold” ep. I know I’ve mentioned it before, but it has just been such a good friend to me these past few months; gentle, honest, kind, comforting. “Open Door” is so relatable for me right now and I treasure it.

Movies/YouTube/TValice ending

  • While You Were Sleeping. This movie is adorable; I love Sandra Bullock’s character and her kind, hopeful approach to life that aides her when she accidentally becomes part of a messy but love-filled family. So many great lines. A solid rom-com.
  • President Obama’s address concerning reducing gun violence. My family has never watched the news, but as I’ve grown I’ve begun wanting to know more about what’s going on in the world. I’m so thankful for the internet in that sense; I got to watch the president’s speech on gun violence and know firsthand what he said, instead of hearing passionate but maybe inaccurate interpretations from other people. He is a powerful speaker and I ended up crying as I watched this.
  • “Worst Cooks in America.” I laugh so hard at all the hilarious things these quirky people say, and I also get excited for them when they’re successful in the kitchen.
  • Alice in Wonderland. The animated Disney film has always been one of my favorites. It was such a source of wonder for me. Now, I get to ponder and breathe as I sink into it’s familiarity. A work of art.
  • “Agent Carter.” Season two began a few weeks ago, and these characters are still so loveable; Jarvis is a complete gem. It’s fun to get into the mystery and the spy setting, especially set in a 1940s Marvel universe.
  • Ben Rector’s performance on The Today Show. I adore Ben Rector. Live videos of him are so much fun, and I’m not even actually there, so he’s got to be great, right? Also, points for how well dressed the entire band is.

Books/Articles/Blogsnew book

  • “You Are in a Relationship With Yourself; Make It a Healthy One” by Donald Miller. I had just processed (and shared) many thoughts about this topic myself when this post crossed my path! I appreciate these reflections on self-care and on the opinions we have of ourselves versus the opinions others have of us.
  • “When You Need to Hear God in the Midst of Your Hard Place” by Diane Comer. This met me. “When I confess my flaws, my guilt, and my failures to God, He takes the softest washcloth to my mess and bathes me in beauty. I lean into His warmth, breathing in the scent of Him, wanting more.”
  • “Anxiety Facts: 12 Important Ones You May Not Know” on Hey Sigmund. I thought this was interesting and something a lot of people could benefit from. Dealing with anxiety myself, there was some new information here to help me be aware of how I can cope better.
  • “The King in The Window” by Adam Gopnik. Something I’ve recently learned about myself is that I like youth fiction more than most genres, so you’ll probably be seeing a bit more of that here each month. This particular book was decent, although the fantasy got pretty complicated and hard to follow. I was enchanted by the idea of a war between the keepers of mirrors and of windows. I don’t feel I wasted time on it. [I review books in-depth on Goodreads!] [Also, note my crazy painful sunburn in the above photo, revealing I bought this book last June.]
  • “Finding Forgiveness When It Seems Impossible” by Allison Vesterfelt. Real-talk about forgiveness, instead of just “you need to do it so do it,” is so refreshing. The points about forgiving yourself within the situation, and about people doing the best they can– solid.
  • “Non-Goals” on Design for Mankind. I love this a ton. “I think there is a certain beauty in taking stock of yourself, in peering into your own green eyes, in surveying the wrinkles and the grays and your innermost imperfections and saying to you and you alone: You know, NOT BAD.
  • “I Tried to Pray the Gay Away and It Nearly Killed Me” by Kevin Garcia. We need to hear these stories from the people who have lived them. Please read, and truly listen, with love for your brother.
  • “Kenny and The Dragon” by Tony DiTerlizzi. I read it in an afternoon. A delight both in story and illustration, for any age.

Taking part in Leigh Kramer’s “What I’m Into” link-up, per the norm. Be sure to check it out if you like glimpsing what other people are enjoying!

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