Top Five Talents

July 3, 2011

I’m currently reading Talent Is Never Enough by John Maxwell. One of the things he asks of the reader is to identify your top 5 talents. I feel like I have a few talents, but I also feel like there are some talents that we have that we don’t even know we have because they come that naturally. So, I’m asking you – what do you think my top 5 talents are? (and if you say cooking, I’ll know you’re lying. following a recipe does not equal a cooking talent.)

I know this is a tough question, so know that you can take a few days to think about it before you respond. I asked the hubs about 3 or 4 days ago and told him he could think about it…I’m waiting on the full answer. So far, his responses were writing and talking. (It’s possible he was implying I talk too much…oops!)

So what do you think?

What do you consider to be your talents? How do you use them?

 

Pilates in the Park

July 2, 2011

Chicago has workout classes in Millennium Park every Saturday in the summer. I made my first attempt to get downtown early enough to participate today. Unfortunately, I had to wait 20+ minutes on my bus and my train got delayed for 10+ minutes at one of the stops on my route…which extended my commute by 30+ minutes (for all you English majors out there). I arrived downtown just in time for yoga relaxation.

So, instead of yoga, which was the class I most wanted to take, I took pilates. It was so nice to be outside first thing in the morning…and to work out with a couple hundred of my closest friends.

I rewarded myself for getting up early with a very large iced coffee for the train ride back home.

It was bliss.

How do you feel about working out in public? Cool? Or not cool?

Read more about workouts in the park here.

July Book Selection

July 2, 2011

And the winner is…

The Girl’s Guide to Homelessness by Brianna Karp!

Come back for the book discussion on Saturday, July 30th!

Bloggy Book Club Updates:

  • Would you participate in a bloggy book club “chat” on Twitter? If so, what day/evening works best for you?
  • What will make this book discussion more interesting for you? I’m looking for feedback!
  • Have a suggestion for August? Post it here!

July Book Poll

June 27, 2011

Vote for the book you want to read in July.

Bloggy Book Club Updates:

  • Would you participate in a bloggy book club “chat” on Twitter? If so, what day/evening works best for you?
  • What will make this book discussion more interesting for you? I’m looking for feedback!
  • Have a suggestion for August? Post it here!

So last week I started this series on how to make friends in a new place. You’ve probably all been there – a new environment of some sort or another. It can be challenging to meet and get to know new people. I’ve been in this situation for the past year. I picked up and moved my life from Alabama to Chicago. I left my family and my friends there, and I had to find a way to make new friends here. These tips are based on my experience.

Tip #2:  Take advantage of the local flavor.

This weekend I went to a local farmer’s market. (see my fresh strawberries below.)

Fresh Strawberries

I have a wonderful friend who already knew about this special event, and she allowed me to tag along with her and her twin daughters. We walked around, ate free popcorn and sampled other goodies, and bought some fresh produce for the week. (In case you were wondering, I bought spinach, asparagus, a bell pepper, and strawberries.) It was so good to get out and enjoy something this area has to offer with a good friend.

I also went with the same friend to a local park so her twins could run around and release some energy. I took my oversized puppy with us and we snacked on some fresh veggies, potato chips, and yummy dip.

Later that same day, my husband and I met two other couples downtown at Millennium Park for a free concert. We took a picnic and enjoyed each others company for a few hours. It was perfect weather for a picnic in the park!

So this week’s tip is to look up fun things to do in your area and make plans! What a wonderful way to learn more about your town and meet or get to know new people!

Word of the Week:  New

Word to the Wise:  “I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God….”  Psalm 40:1-3

Disclaimer:  As I said previously, these tips are based on my own experiences. Take them for what they’re worth.

What fun events are planned in your area?

June Book Discussion

June 25, 2011

Title:  The Wednesday Sisters
Author: Meg Waite Clayton

What did you think of The Wednesday Sisters?
Share your opinions in the comments section and answer any of the discussion questions that you want to answer. Check back for more comments, and join the conversation!

Book Club Discussion Questions:

1. Which of the “sisters” do you relate to the most? Why?

2. What did you enjoy most about this book? The characters? The friendships? The history? The inspiration and achievements?

3. Some readers may find themselves frustrated with Kath who refuses to leave her husband despite him moving out and maintaining a relationship with another woman. Other readers may find this true to the time period. What was your reaction to Kath’s situation?

4. How did you feel about the Miss America pageant playing a role in guiding this book through different time periods in history, phases in life, and the characters’ struggles?

5. Brett’s gloves were an outward expression of the masks that women (and people!) wear. Did you feel gloves were a good representation or an overly obvious representation of a troubled past and present insecurities?

Have more questions about the book? Feel free to post additional questions in the comments section.

Find  other book club posts here:
Bloggy Book Club
Bloggy Book Reviews

Bloggy Book Club Updates:

  • Would you participate in a bloggy book club “chat” on Twitter? If so, what day/evening works best for you?
  • The July book poll will be posted by Monday. Please stop back by and vote for the book you want to read in July.
  • What will make this book discussion more interesting for you? I’m looking for feedback!

Happy reading!

Moving to a new place (city, church, school, job, etc.) can be hard. You have to leave much of what you know behind and basically start over. For me, moving to Chicago, I left a lot of friends behind, and while I kept (and continue to keep) in touch with them as much as possible, I missed having friends nearby.

This weekend, I spent time with good friends, and I started thinking that really everyone has been through what I’ve gone through over the last year. Everyone has been in a situation where they needed to make new friends. So here is the first of my Making Friends tips.

Tip #1:  Spend quality time with quality people.

This weekend was great. It was filled with fun and sun, and while having plans for hanging out on the lake all day on Saturday was exciting, one of the best parts of the weekend was sitting outside on the deck talking about life, love, and friends. Quality time. Quality conversation.

A new friend.

It leaves me longing for more.

Word of the Week:  Quality

Word to the Wise:  “A longing fulfilled is sweet to the soul…”  Proverbs 13:19

Disclaimer:  I am pretty sure this will be the first of many tips. I am also pretty sure that the order in which they are given may not make much sense. What can I say? Life works that way.

Have you ever felt anxious about making new friends in a new place? What did you do about it?