Friday Favorites April 28 ’23 Edition

Here is my weekly dose of inspiration…enjoy!

Music:

Maneskin’s newest album RUSH for when you want to jam to that 90s pop/alt rock sound.

This album for Beltane:Songs for the Green Time, because May Day/Beltane is on Monday.

Books:

Prayers of Honoring Grief by Pixie Lighthorse is a collection of sensitive and heartful prayers, reflection questions, and suggestions for processing grief with the aid of the four directions. If you’re in a season of grief or know someone who is, this would make a beautiful gift.

Tears of the Giraffe (No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency Book #2) by Alexander McCall Smith is one of my favorites of the earlier books in the series. There are several intriguing cases for Mma Ramotswe to solve, and things to put right. And she always does. As always, if you haven’t given this series a try yet, please do!

Podcasts:

What Should I Read Next Episode 377: What NOT to read next is a good episode for you if you have a lot of unread books on your bookshelf. Yes, I’m outing myself. I have quite a few unread books on my shelves, although I still want to read most of them.

Art:

Rachelle Kearns is a favorite artist of mine. I share her work from time to time. She paints all those circles–do you know who I mean? Anyway, she has a new print in the Mercyscape series called ‘Mercyscape’ – from dust that is so magical and glorious I can’t stop thinking about it.

Flower Essences:

Another flower essence I use to help me with setting intentions, connecting to my intuition and having more clarity is Queen Anne’s Lace Flower Essence. It’s actually part of the Full Moon Diffuser, Flower Essence & Crystals set.

Quotes:

If you are restless, if you are not able to sit peacefully and with stability, it is because you are not established in the now. Restlessness is the disease of our times, and the more we try to fill it with the consumption of things…the more the emptiness grows and the more restless we beome. We should remind each other that the now is the only thing that is solid and real. – Thich Nhat Hanh

The success of Yoga does not lie in the ability to perform postures but in how it positively changes the way we live our lives and our relationships. –T.K.V. Desikachar

Ok that’s a wrap! Let me know what you thought of this week’s inspo and have a great weekend. If you want the complete Friday Favorites list, join my Patreon “At the Well” tier.

Friday Favorites, April 21 ’23 Edition

This week I have a recipe, music, art, podcasts, books, aromatherapy, and a quote to share with you as inspiration. Enjoy!!!

Recipe

My husband makes this meal at least twice a month: Almond Butter Tofu Stir-Fry. Delicious crispy tofu and green beans in a spicy, flavorful sauce over rice. It’s so so good!!

Music

Starling Arrow is a five-woman acapella, spirit-folk group and their music is full of ethereal harmonies and lyrics, yet gutsy and powerful as well. I don’t like sad music and even though several songs are quieter and peaceful, there isn’t a real melancholic feel that makes me want to sob. You have to listen to them if you haven’t already. Cradle is their latest release and I’ve listened to it for three days straight and wish they were coming to Ithaca!

Art

Loré Pemberton’s art calls me back to a quiet, slower, simpler pace with her folk-style paintings.

Podcasts

Business Made Simple with Donald Miller: The Secrets to Self-Discipline and Habit Formation In this episode, Don has a conversation with Craig Groeschel about discipline and habits. One thing Craig said that stood out to me is that we are disciplined in something, even if we often say to ourselves, “I wish I had more discipline.” We can be disciplined at the wrong things, such as sleeping in each morning instead of getting up and working out, or eating too many snacks each night, or whatever. We just need to direct that power to choose something over and over into an area of life we need it in.

Marketing with Brendon Burchard: Everything You Need to Know About Publishing I found this episode so informative, as someone who wants to publish books. He covers self-publishing, distribution, and traditional publishing and talks about the pros and cons of each. I loved it and recommend it if you want to publish a book too!

Books

The Kalahari Typing School for Men by Alexander McCall Smith on Audible. Are you familiar with this mystery series? It’s a comforting collection to me that I listen to over and over. The earlier half of the series are the ones I like best. In this one, Mma Makutsi starts a new business and Mma Ramotswe solves a case of a cheating husband. All the regular characters, Mr. JLB Matakoni, Mma Potakwani, and the useless apprentices make appearances. It’s a feel-good series that I highly recommend.

Bleeding Heart Yard by Elly Griffiths. This was the third Harbinder Kaur mystery novel I’ve read and it was pretty good. If you like her character, a lesbian of Indian descent, and a Sikh, you’ll enjoy seeing what happens to her next. I’m not giving anything away by saying she is now working in London. It’s not as much a favorite as some other detective series, but it’s worth continuing with if you like British mysteries.

Aromatherapy

Delicata House WomanKind Blend: This is my own blend of Clary Sage, Patchouli, Lavender, and Cardamom. I use it for pms/period related symptoms like feeling irritable, down, tired, or stressed. And I also use it when I want some extra nurturing. It’s a gorgeous floral, spicy, sensual, herbaceous blend and one of my hands-down favorite blends.

Delicata House New Moon Blend: Another one of my own blends that I used to bring in some magic for this week’s New Moon Gathering on Zoom. (I hope you come to next month’s 5/18 zoom New Moon Gathering!) Anyway this blend contains White Spruce, Lavender, Eucalyptus Radiata, and Frankincense Sacra, four potent and powerful essential oils. It is all at once heady and expansive, clarifying and grounding. Get ready to plant seeds of intention with the new moon…or use it anytime you want to start or re-start. Diffuse this blend for new beginnings of any kind or for spiritual practices or rituals.

Quote

(I’m not going to add anything to these words. Just let them soak into you.)

To love or have loved, that is enough. Ask nothing further. There is no other pearl to be found in the dark folds of life. – Victor Hugo


I hope you find some good inspiration and pass it on!

If you’d like to find out my complete Friday Favorites list, join my Patreon at the Kindred Spirits Literary Society tier or higher. That’s where I share it all.

xo Kim

Friday Favorites, April 14 ’23 Edition

On Fridays, I like to look back over the week at what inspired, encouraged or challenged me. My favorites can be podcasts, books, music, tv shows/films, art, quotes, Nature, or experiences. Enjoy!

Podcasts:

Motivation by Brendon Burchard:

5 Daily Practices of All Leaders If you consider yourself a leader, here are the tips for how to keep yourself at your best, with your cup filled so you can encourage and serve your community.

For the Wild: An Anthology of the Anthropocene:

Rosemary Gladstar on Thriving While Planted Anything with Rosemary Gladstar in it is sure to be uplifting and connect us to the plants. Rosemary is considered the godmother of modern Western herbalism. She has a practical, wise outlook on life and about interacting and working with plants. What she says in this episode about the healing plants that move in after land has been disturbed is magical. I never thought about them quite that way. If you’re interested in herbalism, you will enjoy this episode.

Books

Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus is a novel that stands apart from so many. Set in the mid-1950s-1960s, it’s about chemist and mother, Elizabeth Zott. She is a singular character–very straightforward, smart, and in love with chemistry. After she fails to get her PhD because of the misogynistic men in the chemistry department, she finds work at a local chemistry lab. There she meets Calvin, a savant who, since he’s a man, has no problem advancing his career. They meet and fall in love.

Fast forward several years to when Elizabeth is now a mother, a freelance chemist, and desperate for more income. She unexpectedly lands a job as host of Supper at Six, an afternoon tv cooking show for women. Using all her chemistry terminology as she cooks, and connecting it with life lessons, Elizabeth soon has a cult following of women all over the country. She’s famous, but she doesn’t want to be. She still wants to be a chemist. You have to read it to find out how it ends!

TV Shows

Whitstable Pearl, Series 2: I love how different and unexpected parts of life will interconnect, how themes will come up once you begin to put attention on something. I’ve been reading Katherine May’s new book Enchantment, and was enamored with her description of Whitstable, the English town where she lives, especially the sea where she likes to swim.

Then I saw that season 2 of Whitstable Pearl was available and dove right in. Being able to see the beach and scenes in the town was fascinating and helped me to appreciate Katherine May’s writing even more. I also enjoyed the mysteries in this series for themselves, which were not all murders. And one of the episodes is a take on the Hitchcock classic Rear Window and I was captivated. It does deal with the grief and loss and in a realistic, poignant way that anyone dealing with loss will understand.

Side note: I have a few Whitstable Pearl books on my Kindle that I haven’t read yet, so they are moving up on my TBR list.

For the complete list, check out my Patreon at the Kindred Spirits Literary Society tier or higher.

Poem (Evening Poetry, April 5)

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From Rhythms and Roads by Victoria Erickson

To me, love isn't the opposite of hate.
It's the opposite of fear.
Maybe we can burn away fear
using love as the flame.
Maybe we can consciously hold that burn
any time fear attempts to return.
Maybe we can become 
the very fire itself.

Blossom (Evening Poetry, April 4)

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by Mary Oliver; find this poem in American Primitive.

In April
the ponds open
like black blossoms,
the moon
swims in every one;
there’s fire
everywhere: frogs shouting
their desire,
their satisfaction. What
we know: that time
chops at us all like an iron
hoe, that death
is a state of paralysis. What
we long for: joy
before death, nights
in the swale – everything else
can wait but not
this thrust
from the root
of the body. What
we know: we are more
than blood – we are more
than our hunger and yet
we belong
to the moon and when the ponds
open, when the burning
begins the most
thoughtful among us dreams
of hurrying down
into the black petals
into the fire,
into the night where time lies shattered
into the body of another.

Lantern (Evening Poetry, April 3)

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by Annie Lighthart

Some evening, almost accidentally, you might yet understand
that you belong, are meant to be, are sheltered---

still foolish, but looking out the door with a contented heart.
This is what the king wants and the old man and woman

and even the busy young if you knew, and you have it
by no grace of your own, standing in the doorway

with loose empty hands. Now your heart lights your mind,
a little lantern bobbing within you,

giving out not thought or feeling but confluence,
something else. On what do you pour out this light?

The wet street is empty, one wren in the yard. Let us
redefine love and wreckage, time and weeds.

Pour out your lantern light on the grass, on the bird,
great and small worlds. Don't go inside for a long, long time.

You can find this poem in Pax by Annie Lighthart.

A fun British mystery series you need to read

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I just finished the third installment in the Thursday Murder Club series, called The Bullet That Missed. If you haven’t read anything in this series, and you enjoy British mystery novels, I highly recommend you check them out.

The first two, The Thursday Murder Club and The Man Who Died Twice were wonderfully narrated by Lesley Manville and that’s how I read them, as audiobooks.

The most recent novel, The Bullet That Missed, I read in the actual hardcover book format because it was available to borrow at my local public library. The members of the Thursday Murder Club: Joyce, Ron, Elizabeth, and Ibrahim continue to surprise and delight with their resourcefulness, ruthlessness, clear-eyed take on mortality, and ability to enjoy life and each other while solving crimes.

This mystery finds the four members working together to save lives and catch a potential murderer, with help from local cops, children and grandchildren. Their interactions with technology like Zoom and Instagram are hilarious. If you are in their age group or have older friends or relatives who are, you might nod your head.

The fourth in the series, called The Last Devil To Die comes out on September 19, 2023. And I look forward to reading it!

Let me know in comments if you’ve read any of the Thursday Murder Club series.

And if you’d like to get monthly reading recommendations, book talk videos and blogs, and have access to a monthly book discussion on Zoom, join the Kindred Spirits Literary Society on Patreon.