My hubby Bill and I spent much of last month traveling. First, we ventured to Spain to walk el Camino de Santiago from the town of Sarria, to Santiago, about 120 km.
The photo in the upper left above is us in front of the Cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, the site where the remains of St. James the Great are said to rest and the destination of all the pilgrims who walk the Camino.
After we reached Santiago, we traveled across Spain to Barcelona to explore that beautiful city. The photo in the upper right is me (looking almost as though I have a halo) inside la Sagrada Familia, probably the city’s most well-known landmark.
La Sagrada Familia is the whimsical cathedral designed by the renowned architect Antoni Gaudi. After over 140 years of ongoing construction, the magnificent building is still unfinished. The goal is to complete it in 2016, the 100th anniversary of Gaudi’s death, but locals are skeptical that this will actually happen.
When we returned from Spain, we did our laundry, caught our breath, then three days later headed to South Carolina for a beach vacation with some close friends.
I think my favorite times at the beach were late afternoons when we would all congregate at the heated pool at the house we rented to have happy hour drinks and snacks and sing along while oldies played on the radio and we played in the water like kids.
One afternoon while we swam, we began counting monarch butterflies as they drifted past on their migration to Mexico. We lost count after 300 passed by.
“Rest in your God-breathed worth. Stop holding your breath, hiding your gifts, ducking your head, dulling your roar, distracting your soul, stilling your hands, quieting your voice, and satiating your hunger… The One who knit you together in your mother’s womb is the one singing these words over you, you are chosen.” Sarah Bessey
I love this quote from Sarah Bessey, the Canadian author of “Feminist Jesus” and other books. In her October newsletter, Sara calls on women of faith to stand up and be heard. I read her essay called “Nope, Not Going Home” with tears in my eyes.
This essay is dedicated to “Every single one of us who has been told by men to go home. To stay silent. To shut up. To stop stirring up trouble. To take a seat. That we are shrill or angry or bitter or disruptive.”
Tell it, Sister Sarah.
I have my sister and brother-in-law to thank for introducing me to the Netflix series “Round Planet” by BBC Earth.
When you first begin watching Round Planet, it seems like a conventional nature documentary series with lush, gorgeous photography and a posh-sounding British commentator a la David Attenborough.
It doesn’t take long to realize that the narrator “Armstrong Wedgewood” is actually a comedian doing a send-up of British nature commentators and the script is really not a stuffy oh-so-serious documentary, but a hilarious comedy. It’s the best of two worlds – educational and entertaining.
I watched shows on The Oceans (“massive death chowder”), Wildebeest (“one of the many species of ungulates and ‘cud munchers’ that populate the Serengeti”), and Bears (who”live in the tropics as well as the Arctic and exude a general air of ‘bear-iness'”). I am looking forward to Penguins (who” only have to waddle about to make children — and Amstrong Wedgewood — smile”).
How did I not read “Anatomy of a Rose” by Sharman Apt Russell until last month? Even though it was published in 2001, I had never heard of it until I stumbled across a copy at our local library’s annual book sale and bought it for $1.
I absolutely loved this book. Beautifully written with pen and ink illustrations, Russell educates the reader about flowers in such a delightful way that you never realize you are getting a botany lesson until you have finished.
I had no idea that flowers were so complex, willful, and, well…devious. These seemingly placid beauties have devised (evolutionarily speaking) all sorts of ingenious methods to achieve their goals of reproduction and propagation.
Who could not love a book which contains a chapter with a title like “Sex, Sex, Sex”? Referring to flowering plants, of course.
The best quote of the book: “Wonder is not only our starting point; it can also be our destination.”
I am linking up with Heather Gerwing for her “Four Somethings”. Thanks, Heather, for giving the opportunity to think and write about four such compelling topics.
Also linking with Debbie at Dare 2 Hear, Random-osity for Little Things Thursdays, Knit by God’s Hand for Thankful Thursdays, Welcome Heart for Let’s Have Coffee, Amy at Live Life Well, Susan B Mead for Dancing With Jesus, Raisie Bay for Word of the Week, Morgan’s Milieu for Post, Comment, Love, Lyli Dunbar for Faith on Fire, Embracing the Unexpected for Grace and Truth, and Crystal Storms for Heart Encouragement.