I was inspired by a bit of Facebook stalking to write a blog about my favorite 10 albums. I’m not giving this a whole lot of thought, if I’m honest…but I’ve found that sometimes I operate better on instincts….plus it’s late at night and I can’t sleep and I want to write. So.

10. The Beautiful Letdown – Switchfoot

One of the first “rock-y” albums I ever truly liked. I remember feeling really hesitant about listening to it on my stereo, as my parents wouldn’t have really liked it, so I used my CD Walkman. Yes, my Walkman. It was much later down the road when I got my first….mp3 player (no, it wasn’t an iPod). I remember, recognizing how truly brilliant the album was, though, even when I was…oh, 14 or so.
Favorite tracks: The Beautiful Letdown, On Fire, Twenty-Four

9. Listen – Michelle Tumes

An odd choice, maybe, but I love this album. It instantly takes me back to a much, much simpler time of my life. The first time I heard Listen, the title track, I was maybe 10. It was on KLJC, back when I wasn’t really allowed to listen to it, but Kristin had it on anyway (haha, sorry darling, wasn’t trying to rat you out, it’s just part of the story). I can’t remember if she liked it or not, but I remember it wouldn’t get out of my head. Then I heard Life is Beautiful, and my overly melodramatic 10 year old mind clung to it. I loved the little reveal at the end “And I’m still singing…”. I thought it was clever.
Favorite Tracks: Listen, Healing Waters, Heaven Will Be Near Me, He’s Watching Over You

8. Run The Earth, Watch the Sky – Chris Rice

Another childhood album — Kari loved Chris Rice, and I wanted so desperately to be like my older sisters…even if I wouldn’t have admitted it at the time. Kari waited a long time for it to come in at the library, and I remember we came home — with several bags of books, I’m sure, and we put it on our stereo. We’d heard the title track song before, and I remember we sang along with the parts we could remember enthusiastically. Chris Rice was the first artist that I really connected with, the first artist I actually wanted to listen to. Before him, music was something we did at church, and fun songs like Veggie Tales. It wasn’t really something that was recreational. I got all of his CD’s from the library, though, and listened to them over and over.
Favorite Tracks: All of them. Seriously.

7. Why Should the Fire Die – Nickel Creek

Nickel Creek, like Chris Rice, is never bad — there are just simply some songs I like more than others. Why Should the Fire Die has the most of my favorites. I should mention that Melody was the first one to introduce me to this band, and The Fox (a song that isn’t on this album! Darn!) was pretty much our Haiti theme song. Also, when we were 15 or so, we assigned songs (by the lottery of “the shuffle”) to the boys we said we loved at the time. Oh, gracious. What did I know about love then. What do I know about love, now? The songs, if you’re curious, were Scotch & Chocolate and Stumptown. The boys will remain nameless.
Favorite Tracks: Jealous of the Moon, Anthony, Why Should the Fire Die, Doubting Thomas, Somebody More Like You

6. Pride and Prejudice Soundtrack – Dario Marianelli

This is another CD that was introduced to me by Melody — and I remember that one of my favorite songs on the whole album, The Secret Life of Daydreams drove me crazy the first time I listened to it. I truly really hated it, haha. It’s a trend I’ve noticed recently, though; sometimes my favorite kinds of music are like an acquired taste — I’ll be introduced to them, hate them, but they’ll sit and take root in my mind, until when I stumble across them again in the future…I love them. I think that was some sad form of mixing metaphors, but we’ll carry on. I have listened to this CD over and over and over again, and I will never get sick of it. Dario’s composition and Jean’s piano playing (I use their first names with the deepest respect, please understand that it’s only because they have particularly un-spell-able last names) combine in this thing of beauty that, when I heard it, I felt like I’d been waiting for it. It’s possible that it should be higher up on my list, but really, all of these albums are so close, there’s no clear number one.
Favorite Tracks: Dawn, Liz On Top of the World, Darcy’s Letter, The Secret Life of Daydreams, Credits

5. Only With Laughter Can You Win – Rosie Thomas

Like with Nickel Creek and Pride and Prejudice, Rosie Thomas was an acquired taste. I positively hated her when I first heard her, and now I feel like she and I are dear friends. There is so much about her as a person and her songs that I relate to. It was impossible to pick my favorite album, as she — like Nickel Creek and Chris Rice — has never written a bad song. I do have a favorite song, though, Let Myself Fall. It is…well, as Buddy Glass would say, Poetry. In so many ways. So this is the album that surrounds that song, and that is why I choose it.
Favorite Tracks: Let Myself Fall, Gradually

4. Fiction Family – Fiction Family

This is the first album (of several, I’m afraid) that I bought impulsively, after only listening to a few snippets of songs. Paul Winfield wrote in his status something about Switchfoot and Nickel Creek collaborating, and I about had a conniption, I was so eager to buy this combination of genius. I wasn’t disappointed. It’s…so different. It’s unique. It’s special. It’s altogether itself, and each song is a jewel. Buy it.
Favorite Tracks: All of them. Every single one.

3. Bomb in a Birdcage – A Fine Frenzy

Ali is her music, and her music is beautiful. She crafts her lyrics, and every word is sincere. Her sound is unique, and her songs specific but oh-so relate-able! Her happy songs positively glow, and her sad songs break your heart. I’ve stayed away from her recently. I was listening to her almost non-stop, and I didn’t want to….well….how do I explain it…over-stay my welcome.
Favorite Tracks: What I Wouldn’t Do, Electric Twist, Happier, Swan Song, Elements, Bird of the Summer, Stood Up, The Beacon

2. Counting Stars – Andrew Peterson

Melody, you have shared so much good music with me. I’m almost sure I discovered Andrew Peterson on my own. I heard Holy is the Lord and was in awe of it, and I later loved After the Last Tear Falls, but Melody told me that he had a new album out, Counting Stars. It is…genius. He is genius. I just….wow. If I can be a lyricist and musician like him someday, I’ll be absolutely blissful.
Favorite Tracks: Many Roads, Dancing in the Minefields, World Traveler, Fool with a Fancy Guitar, You Came So Close, The Reckoning

1. Ellipse – Imogen Heap

Oh, Immi. I sort of fawn over her. She’s so extraordinarily herself, so brilliant in what she does, so brutally honest, so mature in her songwriting…so…amazing. She does everything herself – recording, editing, songwriting, etc. She lives in a big old house in England…she’s just. My. I don’t know. I suppose it sounds like I just want to be her, but actually, she simply inspires me to be myself. Wholly who God created me to be. I almost felt like I was a part of this album. I watched the vlogs she made during the album-writing process, so when it finally came out I was ecstatic. Never before had a single CD meant so much to me — the order of the songs, the high note right there, the trouble she’d had with the lyrics there, the story behind that one, and oh-my-that-song-changed-so-much-since-the-first-time-she-played-us-a-clip. Even though there are several songs I don’t particularly care for, I appreciate all of them so very much. I understand the effort and the tears and the joy that went into making every one of those tracks, and I love her and her music for it.
Favorite Tracks: First Train Home, Wait it Out, The Fire, Half Life

Well. There you have it. That took quite a long time to write, and I am sufficiently exhausted enough to sleep now, at 2am in the morning.

Someday, SOMEDAY, I will straighten my sleeping habits out. For now, it seems like the schedule is staunchly in my subconscious, determined to do what it likes.

Dear reader, thank you for reading, even when I am frightfully self-indulgent.

Ok.

Fine.

I am going to resort to being a 13 year old girl who has a diary thinly disguised as a blog and talk about…a boy.

Yes, just one single, solitary boy.

Just for a second, please? Just indulge me, so I can get it out of my system?

He’s unlike anyone else. He’s unintentionally prompted me to change for the better and sent me running to God because he himself is so devoted to God. He’s raised the bar for any future guys.

I know that I can’t be with him, that he doesn’t share the same admiration for me.

So why the heck can’t I get him out of my head?!?

It’s not like I’m going to stop blogging once August is over…so why do I feel a little sad about BEDA finishing?

Right now, I haven’t even gotten out of bed yet — it’s about 8:30…which is much better than yesterday…when I didn’t get up till 10:30….yeah…

Tonight I have a piano lesson, and I wish I felt more prepared. The way these lessons work, there’s not just a few piano pieces I practice and then play for her, it’s a work in progress. I like to feel like I’m achieving something, so this is a little frustrating for me. Plus, I want to know that I did what I was supposed to. I feel like I practiced a lot, but what if it’s not as much as I need to in order to achieve my goal? I have no way to gauge it.

——

I have been practicing piano chords for approximately an hour and I can hardly see straight. To reiterate what I was saying before, it kills me to have so many things to tackle that none of them can be completed in a set amount of time (in this case, one week). So now I sit, banging my head against my keyboard because I CANNOT for the LIFE of me complete the A-flat through B root chords and their inversions without messing up, and I’ve ended up completely ignoring the major and minor sevenths.

*dramatic sigh*

This must be remedied. I’ve got to figure out a way to either change the way my brain works, or figure out a way to set achievable goals so that my brain is happy.

——

Just got back from running errands and signing up for a debit card! Yay! It comes in the mail in about 2 weeks. I’M EXCITED. I’ve been meaning to get one for QUITE awhile now, and it feels like the next right step in my “adult banking experience”. haha.

——

Fashion: A social phenomenon in which random people create new ways of putting fabric together to make clothes and pay attractive people model them, resulting in the lay people desiring and buying said clothes.

——

Well, I guess this is goodbye for now. I’ll probably take a little hiatus from blogging so I don’t burn out. Haha.

Until. (Robin Jones Gunn! :) )

Second to last day of BEDA. Hmm. I can’t decide if I’m going to miss it or not.

Today has been productive, even though I slept in quite a bit. I had a monstrous to-do list, and have gotten almost everything done!

Tonight I’m going to the baseball game with the fam, which should be fun. I guess the last time I went was with the TT and GOG people, over a year ago. I’m not the biggest of baseball fans to be honest. It’s just so….LONG. And usually quite boring. And it doesn’t help that the Royals are so bad. Oh well, it should still be a fun time with my family, and it has been awhile since we’ve spent time together.

Oh gracious, I have no idea what to write. I’ve been staring at the screen for quite awhile now, and nothing is coming. You know what? I’m just going to put in some YouTube videos to fill up the space and call it a day. K? Thanks.

Oh, right. I’m doing that Blog Every Day August thing…which means I have to blog today at *checks clock* 10:29 at night.

Tonight’s sermon/service on suffering was amazing. There were songs in between the sermon, emphasizing each point, and it was just…amazing. I loved it so much.

Also, I took a long nap this afternoon, then read at church while the ‘rents were in Hannah Ministry Time Thingy, which was sweet.

Talked to Mel, Jake, and Michael about the randomest things, which always makes me happy. :)

This morning I had an interesting conversation with someone I’ve never really talked to…maybe I’ll disclose more information about that later, ahah.

Had two little mini-crises (is that the plural of crisis? wikipedia says yes…but…well, you know) today as well…and last night, too. It was whatev, to borrow a phrase from Becky.

Missing Maranatha people today. I was telling Jessica that I can sense we won’t keep in touch — which is a little sad. But hey, people come into your life for different reasons, and it’s ok not to stay in contact with everyone…right?

I need to make another RTBH list…

  • Snow. (…please come quickly)
  • The Great Gatsby
  • Jackets, sweaters
  • Vanilla-scented candles
  • Pillows
  • Checks that feature numbers significantly higher than expected :)
  • Naps
  • Songs worthy of being put on repeat
  • Twitter, even when it entices to grumble more than appropriate

I need to go to bed now.

Until tomottow…..oh my goodness yes, I really did accidentally just type that.

Good night.

I am at a complete loss as to what to write today.

Have you ever spent some time with someone, but not gotten to know them as much as you wish you could, and so you take the traits of a real or fictional person who has similar qualities, and transpose them onto the first person?

…I doubt that made any sense, and if it did, I’m probably the only one who would do it. I think I’ll move on.

RTBH:

  • Good books still unread
  • Friends who look past a myriad of faults
  • Years of happy times ahead, God willing (“It’s only a person of weak character who chooses to always be unhappy”)
  • Beautiful chords that I’d never played until today, thanks to piano lessons
  • Prose that isn’t precocious or ridiculous, just beautiful
  • The anti-shadow of headlight beams before a car appears
  • Washing/drying dishes at night to jazz
  • Doughnuts this morning…emphasis on the plurality of that word, haha
  • …piano solos by Stacey Kent’s piano player
  • Smiling even when you don’t want to…because it actually does make you feel better
  • The knowledge that I’ll see Hannah tomorrow!! YAY!
  • God is smarter, wiser, and infinitely more good than I

I have finally replaced the Bible I’ve had since 2005…with a Bible I’ve had since 2007. I wasn’t altogether willing to replace it, but seeing as it was being held together with tape, books in the back were falling out……..and the fact that I spilled hot coco on it last night, I figured it was time.

It’s for the best, I’m sure. I mean, I used to underline everything, and highlight it in garish colors. It’s a little embarrassing. It’s nice to start fresh….but I also dislike it. I knew where everything was in my old Bible. In fact, if I set it on it’s binding and let it open to where it wanted, it would easily fall to one of my favorite passages. I’ll miss that.

I finished watching Emma with my mom today. I really like how Emma’s character changes so much for the better. True, she’s not perfect in the end, but at the beginning she’s almost detestable. By the end she’s humbled and much more kind. And Mr. Knightly is a wonderful hero. He, too, has his faults, but is mostly virtuous.

There was a discussion on facebook about how romance novels were to be avoided, because it gives us false hope for the future. There were several people who said that these novels gave too high of expectations. Maybe they’re reading different books than I am — and if they’re referring to the likes of Twilight, then I agree: but something like Emma gives a fairly good portrayal of a relationship, I think. Alright, sure, I admit that she ends up with a rich, attractive husband…but she’s not perfect, and neither is he. They have parent’s and friend’s approval. They both grow for the better through the story, impart because of each others’ influence. …right? I don’t see why that is giving false expectations. Or, at least, not for a critical reader. Sure, if you’re the silly sort of girl who reads and expects that now a rich “sparkling” man should come sweep you off your feet, then you’re mistaken, but I like these stories.

Besides, let’s look at the romances in the Bible! Isaac and Rebecca, for example — Rebecca trusts a servant’s word and goes to marry this unknown man who just happens to turn out to be rich and handsome man! Or Solomon and his (presumably) first wife, depicted in the Song of Solomon — not every man is going to be so…lavish and poetic in his praise, ahaha. And Ruth? She went to Boaz (a rich older man!!) in the middle of the night (!!) and LAY AT HIS FEET to show that she wanted him to be her kinsman redeemer! And Esther? Who took a year to be “beautified” and then spent the night with the king before they were married? ……if we read this in a romance novel put in this day and age, we would call it scandalous. And these are just the examples I’ve thought of off the top of my head. OH! Jacob and Rachel! He worked FOURTEEN YEARS so that he could marry her. This is devotion.

So why is it that some people think today’s novels have high expectations that make us girls wait for the perfect guy? The Bible has huge expectations for guys — that they be poetic, rich, and work for fourteen years for us. Ok obviously I’m using hyperbole, but ahhh I don’t know. I enjoy a good romance….who doesn’t?! And, who’s to say I shouldn’t hold out for the perfect guy for me? I’m not saying he needs to be rich; that’s not important to me. I would feel ridiculous if he showered me with poems, and would be appalled if he thought I needed to “be prepared” for a year before I was presentable…but I have faith that God will bring me someone perfect for me — or no one at all.

I’m ok with this.

I’m more than ok, I’m content, even happy to wait.

But…also, I want to be married. I wish it didn’t, but this verse keeps floating to the top of my thoughts — “It is not good for man to be alone”.

I have faith in my Father, that He knows what’s best. I really do.