Don’t take this one life for granted

This past week, the final Grateful Dead concerts have been all over my newsfeed – whether it was the ones in California or the ones in Chicago.

I’ve never been a Grateful Dead fan. No real reason, but I just never got into their music.

However, any mention of the Grateful Dead always conjures up a reminder of a good friend in college who died while travelling home from a concert.

I think of Dan Hallberg a lot. In fact, I’ve written about him on this blog more than once.

When I was driving around Kentucky over the weekend, some thoughts came together as to why he is frequently on my mind. Dan was an amazingly talented writer who also lived the life he was given to the fullest. Whenever I think about my writing or my art and whether or not it makes sense to keep trudging along, I think of Dan and the opportunity he doesn’t have to share his art with the world.

As my friend AJ Leon has frequently said, “This is not your practice life.” Go out there and share what makes you unique with the world.

Nicholas Winton: A true hero

A few years ago, I came across a documentary called The Power of Good: Nicholas Winton. While I had heard many stories about amazing things people did to rescue people from the Germans, this man’s efforts to get children out is absolutely amazing.

If you haven’t seen the documentary, it’s available on Netflix.

You can also watch a clip from 60 Minutes about the man here:

Nicholas Winton passed away yesterday at the age of 106.

Love genealogy? Go check out my new blog

So, for a whole bunch of reasons (some yet to be announced), I decided to create a new blog for all my genealogy content. You can find the first post here — where I talk about my recent trip to Iowa.

My goal for that blog is to start posting about 5 days a week, so get ready for lots of great content!

This blog isn’t going anywhere, but I felt like the genealogy stuff deserved a home of its own.

The blog URL is http://quickstartfamilyhistory.com/

Review: A Chef’s Life

Chefs-Life_815x567I love documentaries.

 

And, I love shows about food.

Due to awesome computer algorithms “A Chef’s Life” popped up as a show I might like, and I loved it.

The show airs on PBS stations around the country and the first two seasons are available on the PBS app for you to watch. I think they are currently filming Season 3, and I can’t wait for the new episodes.

The description from the show’s page describes it this way: “A Chef’s Life is a half-hour character-driven documentary and cooking series that takes viewers inside the life of Chef Vivian Howard, who, with her husband Ben Knight, left the big city to open a fine dining restaurant in small-town Eastern North Carolina.”

One of the things I love best about the show is that a majority of it doesn’t take place in the restaurant. Vivian Howard is all about the whole “farm to table” cuisine and the show actually focuses on what that means.

The show talks about food — especially southern food — in ways I hadn’t seen before. Whether it’s biscuits, turnip greens or Tom Thumb, it’s very cool to see.

It’s been too long …

11542048_10153501921472474_7885554485482540682_nI’ve continued to be in long stretches of introspection lately, which makes writing a bit tough.

I have things to say, but they never get to the point that I want to publish them publicly.

That’s about to change.

A) I’m actually starting a new blog to talk about genealogy / family history “stuff”. Once it’s live, I’ll post the new link here.

B) I consume a lot of media, and I’m determined to share more of my thoughts on some of the media I consume.

Also, I’m toying with the idea of getting a little more political, but we’ll see.

IF:Gathering

A few weeks ago, after returning from Utah, I was strongly thinking about what I needed to start the year off right. One of things that I really wanted to find was a) something that was Christ-focused; b) something that focused on the Bible; and c) something that was geared towards women. I didn’t know what that “something” was — was it a conference, a book, a book study or something completely different.

Being faithful ...

I was planning on asking some people for some recommendations when someone in a Facebook group I’m in posted about the IF:Gathering. I hadn’t heard of it before, but as soon as I looked at the website I knew was the “something” I had been needing.

The main IF:Gathering was held in Austin, Texas. In addition to the main gathering, there were IF:Local events held around the world, and the event was livestreamed. I wasn’t able to get in contact with the IF:Local person here in Clarksville, so I just watched some of the Livestream by myself — mostly at Panera. I’m not alone as the Livestreams have been watched by tens of thousands of people.

I wasn’t able to watch all the sessions. I basically watched 2.5 of them. There is a place you can order a digital download of the sessions, and I’m probably going to do that just because there are a few things I want to watch again (and, I would like to catch the ones I missed).

I was blown away by Christine Caine and some of the things she said — specifically about being a servant and not holding on to old fears.

One of my favorite quotes:

“You cannot take hold of the future if you’re holding on to the past. Leave your pain at the foot of the cross.”

I’m blown away.

The other person that really touched me was Ann Voskamp and in ways I can’t even put into words yet.