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Friday, September 18, 2020

5 Friday Favorites: September 18, 2020






On Fridays I link up with alittlebitofeverythingblog.com and momfessionals.com to share things that made me happy from the week - a photo, a song, a quote or Bible verse, a beauty product, a recipe, a pair of cute shoes, etc. If it's a product, sometimes it's something I actually own and sometimes something I just saw online that gave me a smile. Sometimes it's serious and sometimes it's silly. I suppose I believe that God is in the simple details of life and yes, I can even find Him in a tube of lipstick.

Hi, Friends! Happy Weekend. I miss my older boys something fierce right now, so I had to try really hard to find some joy in little things this week to keep me from jumping in the car and ending up in State College or Knoxville, where I would proceed to drink cheap beer and yell at the Celtics with a bunch of college boys. 

Ahem. I stayed here. I had a respectable glass of Chardonnay last night and also yelled at the Celtics. It was fine. I'm just going to need SOMEONE TO GET A REBOUND and also less turnovers in Game 3. Thank you for your attention to this matter, Professional Basketball Players of Boston.

Here are some things that were more joyous than blowing a 17 point lead. 

1. Bali Sunrise Candle by Opal House


This candle from Target smells like the Capri Blue Volcano candle and costs only $10.00. You're welcome.

2. Clinging Cross


Years ago my mom sent me this handheld wooden cross that fit perfectly into my palm. Since I'm finding it really hard to find any shred of truth out there in the world to hold on to, I've found myself reaching for this cross many times lately whether I'm reading a morning devotional or even just checking on emails. It's comforting for me. I found a similar one here and think this might make a great gift for someone whose hand you haven't been able to hold lately because of the lockdown. Or maybe, you might need to give a gift to yourself as a reminder that our only true hope is Jesus. Keep clinging to Him.

3. Trader Joe's Spatchcocked Lemon Rosemary Chicken

First of all, I want to point out that I am not in favor of the name of this chicken. Did they survey a bunch of high school boys to come up with that? Do better, Trader Joe's. Despite the unfortunate label, this chicken is absolutely delicious and the easiest thing in the world to make. My people loved it, even if the 15 year old snickered at the name. 

4. This Podcast On Mental Performance in Sports



This episode of the Keep the Kettle Hot Podcast from the Cotuit Kettleers of the Cape Cod College League is so interesting and informative. I highly recommend it for players, coaches, and parents of any sport, but especially baseball. The best podcast host I know, Joe Skinner, and his co-host, Ryan, interview Dr. Alan Goldberg in Episode 18. They discuss having a strong mental approach in sports, breaking out of slumps, and if "clutch" is a real thing. Totally worth a listen. You can find it on Itunes or Spotify. And did I mention the best podcast host of all time? 

5. Fierce, Free, and Full of Fire: The Guide to Being Glorious You by Jen Hatmaker



I've read most of Jen Hatmaker's books and I think she is a great writer and wickedly funny. I am only halfway through her newest book, Fierce, Free, and Full of Fire, and I have to say that I'm having a hard time getting into some of it. I honestly think that is more a reflection of my head space right now than the content. The reason this is a favorite this week is simply because of Chapter 3 of the book which is titled "I am Strong in my Body". I honestly do not know a single woman who hasn't had body image issues in her life. If you are someone who doesn't, you are my hero. There has not been a year of my life since I was about twelve that I didn't have some measure of body hatred. Many years were better than others, but I'm not sure I'll ever fully heal that part of my brain that tells me my body is not as it should be. All that to say, I wept buckets reading these words:

"I've been so mean to my body, outright hateful. . . No matter what she accomplishes, I'm never happy with her. I've barely acknowledged her role in every precious experience of my life. I look at her with contempt. And yet every morning, no matter how terrible I have been to her, she gets us out of bed, nurtures the family, meets the needs of the day. She tells me when I am hungry or tired and sends special red-alert signals when I am overwhelmed or scared. . . She has cooked ten thousand meals. She prays without being told to; sometimes I realize she is whispering to God for us. She walks and cooks and lifts and hugs and types and drives and cleans and holds babies and rests and laughs and does everything in her power to live another meaningful, connected day on this earth. She sure does love me and my life and my family. Maybe it is time to stop hating her and just love her back." (excerpts from pages 53-54)

Have a great weekend, Friends. Be kind to yourself. :-)

Disclosure: The View From Behind Home Plate is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn small fees by linking to amazon.com. Post might contain other affiliate links as well

Friday, September 11, 2020

5 Friday Favorites: September 11, 2020




On Fridays I link up with alittlebitofeverythingblog.com and momfessionals.com to share things that made me happy from the week - a photo, a song, a quote or Bible verse, a beauty product, a recipe, a pair of cute shoes, etc. If it's a product, sometimes it's something I actually own and sometimes something I just saw online that gave me a smile. Sometimes it's serious and sometimes it's silly. I suppose I believe that God is in the simple details of life and yes, I can even find Him in a tube of lipstick.


Hey, Friends.

First of all, I want to acknowledge that today is September 11th before I get into talking about some dumb retinol cream I like this week. Nineteen years ago seems like a million years ago and just yesterday all at the same time. I am praying for all those souls lost and their families today. As well, I'm hopeful that our country could try a lot harder to find some semblance of the unity and compassion we had for each other in the days, weeks, and months that followed.

Here are some of my favorite things from this week.

1. Smartless Podcast 


I have been loving the Smartless podcast with Jason Bateman, Sean Hayes, and Will Arnett hosting. They have great guests, but it honestly doesn't matter who they are inteviewing because these three guys are so funny. Warning: not for little ears, but this is laugh out loud hilarious.


2. Football is Back 

One of the very best parts of this week was that football started again. Who would have thought that I would feel such deep gratitude and joy down in the depths of my soul to wake up Saturday morning knowing that SMU was playing Texas State in a game I could not have cared less about last year. So this week in honor of the return of Texas football, I fished through my closet to find my Clear Eyes Full Hearts tee shirt, but it is no where to be found. Must have been a victim of one of my quarantine closet clean-outs.  This one will do just fine. 



I also like this one .

And this one, obviously. Go Horns. Beat UTEP. And then beat all the rest of y'all.


3. Blue Light Blocking Glasses


We started school this week fully online. I kept reading about these Blue Light Blocking glasses which are supposed to help with eye strain and limiting UV glare. I bought a pair and Drew has been wearing them this week. These come in a 3-pack for less than $20.00.  (PS I think he thinks they look cool. The verdict is out on whether they're really helpful or just part of the newest must-haves for maximum distance learning swag.)


4. This Salad Dressing

 It is rare that I find a bottled salad dressing that I like, but I have found one, courtesy of my sister. I had to take a salad to a gathering recently, so I texted her and asked her to tell me what to make. She suggested romaine, goat cheese, pistachios, grape tomatoes, and this dressing. It was so good and obviously easy. #winning


5. Four Baseball Games in One Week


We had three baseball games over the weekend and one on Wednesday night. The weather was amazing for three of them and sticky and raining on and off for another. I would have shown up in a blizzard for it. 

We went to our favorite local sports bar and grill afterwards with longtime teammates and friends. We watched real live baseball and basketball and hockey on tv and drank drinks and ate bar food and I smiled like a maniac all day long and talked way too much because I was gloriously, deliriously happy. My husband refers to this as me being "shot out of a cannon". Thank you, Sweet Jesus, for all the sports. I will love them with unabashed, unrelenting, ridiculously over-the-top abandon forever and ever and ever.


Have a great weekend, Friends, and God bless America.



Disclosure: The View From Behind Home Plate is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn small fees by linking to amazon.com. Post might contain other affiliate links as well

Friday, September 4, 2020

5 Friday Favorites: September 4, 2020






On Fridays I link up with alittlebitofeverythingblog.com and momfessionals.com to share things that made me happy from the week - a photo, a song, a quote or Bible verse, a beauty product, a recipe, a pair of cute shoes, etc. If it's a product, sometimes it's something I actually own and sometimes something I just saw online that gave me a smile. Sometimes it's serious and sometimes it's silly. I suppose I believe that God is in the simple details of life and yes, I can even find Him in a tube of lipstick.

Well, we've made it to a new month in 2020. We did it. School starts this week. At home. On a computer. In a bedroom. It's fine. Totally fine. Everything is fine. 


The Texas Longhorns are set to play football next Saturday, but I still don't want to say it out loud. Everyday I check the Twitter feed of the Texas AD crossing all my fingers and toes and hoping that it all doesn't get flushed down the 2020 toilet of despair. 


If you're thinking that I'm selfish and trivial and shallow, let me just say this.


Let' s move on. #texasforever #pleaseJesus 

Here are some of my favorite things from this week.

1. Old Navy Striped Linen Shirt Dress


This is a cute linen shirt dress that is 20% off today at Old Navy. I wore it just this week on a regular ol' day even though I had no where to go. I felt kind of like a normal person who doesn't wear pjs or Nike shorts and tshirts all day long. I'm finding that feeling like a normal person is one of my goals in September.

2. TammyRamsgirl30 on Twitter


This woman is 59 years old and works as a secretary at a high school in Newport News, Virginia. She goes out and dances in her driveway several days a week and has become a Twitter sensation (and TikTok, I guess, but I don't understand TikTok). She is a gift from the Lord to the world right now I would like to be her best friend. Look her up.

3. 360 Degree Spinning Make-Up Organizer


During the first few months of the quarantine I was on a quest to try all the skincare and make-up products that the world had to offer. I was constantly digging through my bathroom drawers trying to find all my little vials and jars and tubes and getting really frustrated. I got this spinny clear adjustable organizer and now I don't throw as many tantrums which is a bonus for everyone. 

4. Yellowstone


Steve and I have been watching the 3rd season of Yellowstone and it's great. There are really cute cowboys, beautiful shots of Montana (unless it's filmed somewhere else and then it's beautiful shots of some other state), and a completely messed-up dysfunctional family. What's not to like?

5. A Hike and a Word


One of the actual gifts of the pandemic is that we've been finding lots of amazing hiking trails around our area. Steve and I went hiking Sunday morning at Bull Run Mountain which is about 30 minutes from us. We got lost for a little while and our planned 3.5 mile hike turned into 5.5. 



(Tip for hikers: if you're just following behind your leader with all the trust in the world as if he isn't totally color blind, you might end up with an extra 2 miles when you realize he can't tell the difference in the green trail and the yellow trail. It's fine. Everything was fine.)

Anyway, if you happen to feel lost in this mad, mad world right now or perhaps on a hike through the Virginia mountains, I suggest this verse from Isaiah. I must have repeated it to myself 30 times on that darn yellow trail. These words have been a gift to me these last few months:

"I will lead the blind by ways they have not known,
Along unfamiliar paths I will guide them,
I will turn darkness into light before them,
and make the rough places smooth.
These are the things I will do,
I will not forsake them."
-Isaiah 42:16


Happy Weekend, Friends. Let's just keep walking reminding ourselves that He'll always lead.

 
Disclosure: The View From Behind Home Plate is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn small fees by linking to amazon.com. Post might contain other affiliate links as well

Thursday, August 27, 2020

7 Resources for this (Extremely Long) 7th Inning Stretch

For baseball fans, most of the spring and summer felt like the longest 7th inning stretch of all time. With no live games or even practices, our family has had to get our sports fix wherever we could. 

We re-watched the World Series wins of the Nats and the Red Sox. We watched the Texas Longhorns winning the National Championship in 2005 and I jumped up and down and cried again as if it was happening live while my people looked at me like I was a giant weirdo. We watched some of my son's high school basketball state play-off games from last spring. (FYI: I jumped up and down and cried again.) 

With nothing but time on our hands, in addition to re-living some of these amazing moments, we turned to searching for as many movies, documentaries, and podcasts centered around sports as we could and we curated quite a list.

Thankfully, we have professional baseball back and some travel leagues will be playing in the fall, but I thought this month I'd share some of the best sports-related content we found to get us through the pandemic. Here are seven resources that are worth a watch and/or listen for coaches, parents, and players alike until we can get back to the ballpark.

READ THE REST HERE.

Friday, August 14, 2020

5 Friday Favorites: August 14, 2020





 It's time for my Friday link up with A Little Bit of Everything and Momfessionals

On Fridays I share things that made me happy from the week - a photo, a song, a quote or Bible verse, a beauty product, a recipe, a pair of cute shoes, etc. If it's a product, sometimes it's something I actually own and sometimes something I just saw online that gave me a smile. Sometimes it's serious and sometimes it's silly. I suppose I believe that God is in the simple details of life and yes, I can even find Him in a tube of lipstick.

Happy Friday! I'm in Knoxville moving Kyle into his place for his sophomore year at the University of Tennessee. Knoxville has quickly become one of my favorites cities in whole world, so I've got to hustle because there is a lot of shopping and eating to do, not necessarily in that order. Also, I've got to recover from setting up my kid's bedroom and cleaning the bathroom so thorougly that I'm pretty sure that I burned the skin off the inside of my nose and my lungs from breathing in enough Clorox to kill a small animal. I will go forth to live in a fantasy land for the rest of the semester imagining that the 19 and 20 year olds that live in his house will keep their facilities sparkling and fresh - just the way I left it. 


Here are some of my favorite things from this week. 

1. Last Chance U-Season 5


I was a huge fan of the first and second seasons of Last Chance U. For the last few, I lost interest. Joe and I started to watch the 5th season this week and I am all the way here for it. I've already found a favorite player to pray and cheer for and I already want to sit down and have a talking to with a few others. I have been parenting a whole bunch of them from my couch yelling things like, "Son, you need to stop running your mouth and just PLAY. THE. GAME." and also, "I BELIEVE IN YOU, DIOR. The Lord has made you for a purpose, Young Man. Get after it."

I mean. That's totally normal tv watching behavior, right?

2. Color Block Stripe Tee


This tee shirt is adorable and less than $20. The only problem is trying to figure out which color to choose. I like all of them.  

3. I Remember - Lauren Daigle


Earlier this week I woke up in full superfreak mode which seems to be an every other day thing around here. Who even knows why exactly? Was it that my kids were about to leave for college and I'm really, really going to miss all the time we've had together? Was it because ENOUGH ALREADY with all the time we've had together? Was it because someone decided to post about wearing/not wearing masks on Facebook as if we haven't heard that opinion 542 times already? Was it because there's some new weird age spot on my cheekbone? We were out of diet Coke? It could have been any of those things or about 17 other things. 

Anyway, I went for a run and as I usually do I started to talk to the Lord about all the worries I had. These runs usually start out with me saying/yelling something along the lines of "UM. HEY. IT'S  ENOUGH, RIGHT? WHAT IN THE ACTUAL HECK IS GOING ON HERE, LORD? WHY AREN'T YOU SAVING US FROM THIS CRAP-SHOW?" By the middle either my eyes start filling up and I choke them back and/or I'm full-on streaming tears. That's when a song generally shows up to give me some clarity. This week it was Lauren Daigle's I Remember. And so I decided to play it four times in a row until I eventually did remember: He has always been faithful to me. Even when my own eyes could not see. 

4. 3 Pack Seamless Wireless Sports Bras

I recently saw this tweet from Glennon Doyle.



I HATE sports bras. They dig into my shoulders and they take super-human strength to get on and off. Also, to be honest, I don't really need that much support *sigh*, so it isn't necessary for me to wear a sports bra made out of metal and bungee cord materials. That's why I was so happy to see this three pack of seamless, wireless sports bras  recommended by Sophie and Melanie at the Big Boo Cast. An important note: if the Lord saw fit to endow you with some gifts that I have not been bestowed in the chest area, these might not give you enough support. But if you're like me, these are perfect. They don't dig into my shoulders and they offer enough support for running and yoga or just hanging around the house when your sons' friends walk in and you realize you're still in your pjs at 2:00 pm. 

5. My Parents Celebrating 56 Years of Marriage


It wasn't really this week. It's tomorrow. But they're worth celebrating any day. Because as most of us who have been stuck indoors with the loves of our lives for 5+ months know, marriage is no walk in the park. When they went on all those dates at the University of Texas in the early 60s dreaming about navigating their future careers and homes and children together, I somehow feel like "I wonder how we'll handle things during a global pandemic?" wasn't one of the topics. They have been through a lot in their years together - amazingly wonderful things and brutally hard things. But here they stand. Together. I love them so much and miss them more than I can even bear to think about. Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad.  


Have  a great weekend!!

Disclosure: The View From Behind Home Plate is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn small fees by linking to amazon.com. Post might contain other affiliate links as well

Saturday, August 8, 2020

5 Friday Favorites: August 7, 2020






It's time for my Friday link up with A Little Bit of Everything and Momfessionals

On Fridays I share things that made me happy from the week - a photo, a song, a quote or Bible verse, a beauty product, a recipe, a pair of cute shoes, etc. If it's a product, sometimes it's something I actually own and sometimes something I just saw online that gave me a smile. Sometimes it's serious and sometimes it's silly. I suppose I believe that God is in the simple details of life and yes, I can even find Him in a tube of lipstick.

It's August and I think maybe August is going to offer us some fun. I have very little evidence at all to lead me to this conclusion. Still, I'm going with it.

Here are some of my favorite things from this first week of August - the month that we're all counting on to not screw up everything more than it already is. 

1. 100 Days to Brave


Annie F. Downs is one of my favorite leaders in Christian ministry. She has written a number of books and hosts a podcast called That Sounds Fun that I have listened to on and off for a number of years, but even moreso during this pandemic. I've had her devotional, 100 Days to Brave: Devotions for Unlocking Your Most Courageous Self, for a few years and have gone through most of it, but she has encouraged her followers to start it again in August. It seems like fear is the default mode for most people lately including yours truly. Add to that the fact that the news media loves to scare the crap out of us on the regular and bravery seems like a good thing to aim for right now. 


2. The Mindy Project

Here is an essay about my tv watching habits during quarantine which comes after an in-depth therapy session I had on the phone with my sister. Please enjoy.

I keep trying to get into all of these popular shows that everyone recommends like Narcos and Ozark and I just cannot concentrate on anything. (If you are wondering why my sister and I spent about 30 minutes discussing this "problem" that is a very, very good question.) 

Anyway, I think when the world is sad and angry and chaotic, that means for my tv watching line-up, I need only laughter and shenanigans and happy endings. For example, I started to watch Breaking Bad with my husband recently because we aren't super on top of things and missed it the first time around. If you aren't aware, Breaking Bad does not have a lot of laughter and shenanigans and happy endings. I lasted less than two seasons. I almost bailed out after the episode where the drug cartel guy's head was chopped off and left on the body of a tortoise in the desert. The final straw was when Jesse found the little malnourished boy living in filth with his meth-addicted parents. The mother killed the father by crushing him with an ATM machine that they had stolen. It was just delightful. Peace out, Breaking Bad

Enter all the sitcoms. I've rewatched a ton of Parks & Rec episodes. I've watched a lot of Schitt's Creek. But my favorite is The Mindy Project which I think I mentioned before, but I want to do so again as it is the answer to my quarantine tv watching dreams. I adore every single character and the writing is perfection. It's hilarious and sweet and I might or might not have watched an entire season in two days this week.  I have not witnessed a single disembodied head in three seasons, so I feel good about finishing the series. If you need something to make you laugh out loud, Mindy is your girl.



3. This Dress (?)

I'm not quite sure about this maxi dress for me because I'm barely 5'2" and maxi-dresses can be risky for short girls. I'm thinking I could maybe knot up the bottom though if it seems too long.

There are tons of colors and patterns to choose from, but I would probably tend toward the black. I do like the green and blue one, but it might be a little Mrs. Roper from Three's Company-ish. But then again Mrs. Roper might be exactly the style icon we're looking for in such a time as this.
/

4. Tommy John PJs

I got these Tommy John pjs as a gift from my husband because maybe he thinks I'm losing it and needed a little pick me up. Or maybe he is just tired of me wearing old pjs around all day every day.  They are expensive, but they are also dreamy soft and cooling which is perfect for summer because it's so hot outside that I feel like we're all going to burst into flames. Also, since we can't buy real clothes for anything anymore, maybe they're worth it. They are amazing, but don't forget that these are the best pjs ever and they cost way less.


5. The Old Normal

Everyone keeps talking about embracing the "new normal" and I get it. However, my favorite thing this week was a day that felt like the old normal. We left on Thursday traveling four hours away for a baseball tournament. We're staying in a basic, non-fancy Fairfield Inn and eating out at basic, non-fancy chain restaurants. Yes, we have to wear masks walking into restaurants and into the lobby. Yes, there are tables marked off in between us. We have to sit far as far away from other families in the bleachers as we can. But we watched a baseball game live and in person. We cheered a walk-off win. We sat at a Buffalo Wild Wings and watched a live Red Sox game on TV in the bar area. We crammed into our hotel room and my son threw all of his dirty clothes everywhere and left the cap off the toothpaste and I nagged him about it. It was glorious. God bless the Old Normal. I missed you so much.

Disclosure: The View From Behind Home Plate is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means to earn small fees by linking to amazon.com. Post might contain other affiliate links as well