The Diamonds Conference took over my life this month and I loved every minute of it. I’m on staff for Diamonds as social media manager and sponsorship coordinator, so this month was packed with staff Zoom calls and virtual speaker coffee hours and a million different tasks to make the conference happen. I’m also a speaker at the conference, and this year I presented a live session (with a Q&A) titled “A Deeper Walk With God,” facilitated the prayer session with Bethany, and co-led a small group breakout discussion on singleness and chronic illness with Kenna. The weekend of the conference (a Friday through Sunday), Kenna ending up coming over to my place every day and we hung out and watched the conference together.
Besides Diamonds, I really didn’t do much this month; at one point I was at home for almost two weeks straight. I canceled some plans because COVID cases have just been so bad here, and because I was feeling pretty badly too. I started out the month with a two-day medical test (which required me to isolate prior to the test). Other than that I had a nice break from medical appointments this month. I had a couple of voice lessons, ran some errands I’d been needing to run, and I did get in a few fun things, too: I met my pastor’s wife for lunch, Dad came over for dinner, Kenna and I got takeout and had a baking night, and Andrea and I met for coffee.
This month I’m…
Reading: Dust, Kara Swanson. Where Is God When It Hurts?, Phillip Yancey. The Line Tender, Kate Allen. Fly Like A Girl, Mary Jennings Hegar. Walk The World’s Rim, Betty Baker (reread). Mosquitoland, David Arnold. The Invincible Summer of Juniper Jones, Daven McQueen. Love and Luck, Jenna Evans Welch. The Other Side of the Sky, Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner. A Place to Belong, Cynthia Kadohata. A Time For Drums, Ann Rinaldi. And Arrow Is the Sun, Baylea A. Osborn. The South’s Okayest Writer, Sean Dietrich. Woven in Moonlight and Written in Starlight, Isabel Ibanez. 15 total.
Listening to: Mean Girls. Drive, Oh Wonder (incessantly, 24/7). Rise Up (Lazarus), CAIN. Across the Sea, The Sweeplings. The Elements, TobyMac. Feel Like This Forever, Leucadia. Wild Life, OneRepublic. the end, MisterWives. King of My Heart, Bethel Music.
Eating and/or cooking: Pistachios. Mandarin orange chicken. IQ Bars and pears. JOJO’s Chocolate. BBQ chicken zucchini nachos. Pork chops and roasted sweet potatoes. Heavenly Hunks. Chicken sausage. Sweet and salty shortbread cups.
Writing: Outside of work, I spent the majority of my time this month working on Diamonds tasks–my session, schedule spreadsheets, endless emails, and more. I got really behind on letters and missed not being able to write as many as usual, but I wrote 35 and received 44 (and had fun starting to make Valentines).
Grateful for: The days when I had enough energy to be productive. Waking up from a nap to my bedroom flooded with pink light from the sunset. Friends who are not chronically ill, but seek to learn more about chronic illness. Book mail. Long text conversations with friends about books (ones we’re reading and ones we;re writing). Getting the second stimulus check. My kitty being snuggly. Being able to watch TV. Texting with my grandpa. Making fun plans for next month and later this year. Rainy days and my favorite tea. All the good books in the world. And everything about the Diamonds Conference.
What did you do in January? What’s something you are looking forward to in February? Let me know in the comments!