While January and February felt like the months that would never end, April came and went in two seconds. My head is still spinning from the flurry of activity, the decision-making pressure and the big changes that happened in my life during the first full month of spring.

Before I write about my favorite books, children’s books and TV shows, here’s a quick recap of what happened in my personal life. (At least what I can remember!)

With college decision day looming on May 1, we had the crazy idea to squeeze in one more college visit at a university that was seven hours away in Kentucky. Not only did we drive there and back once, but we actually made the trip a second time for their media communications weekend and film fest. Both visits were great, and it turned out to be an integral part of our college search process, but it also created two very exhausting weekends!

We had a four-day weekend to celebrate both my 50th birthday and Easter. I called it my “favorite things weekend” because I got to spend time with family and friends doing the things I love. #morefunat50

A few of those included going to a class to learn to make an arm-knitting blanket…

eating amazing gluten free food at one of my favorite restaurants…

spending time with my extended family…

decorating Easter eggs “Emily style” with watercolors, Sharpies and acrylic paints…

and going to an Escape Room.

Also during the month of April, I started a new job. Because our church merged with a much larger church, I have been transitioning into a completely different role. This also involves driving to a different location, learning new responsibilities and interacting with a different staff. Lots of change!

FAVORITE BOOKS

During the 28 hours I spent on the road with our son driving back and forth to Kentucky, I had plenty of time to absorb a few audio books. All three of them had a similar theme:

My favorite was called, I’m Possible by Jeremy Cowart. Someone asked me how I liked this book yesterday, and I said, “It completely changed my life.” So, I guess that will be my book review. It’s an incredible, inspiring story of how God worked in the life of a kid who could barely get through school to become a famous photographer and Photoshop artist and lots more.

Educated is the story of Tara Westover who was raised in the mountains of Idaho by her government-hating parents who never allowed her to go to school. She checked out books from the library to teach herself enough math to take the AP Exam, and ended up getting a Phd from Cambridge.

The Glass Castle is the true story of Jeannette Walls, a writer for USA Today, Esquire and MSNBC, who was raised by parents who lived like nomads. The family eventually settled in one of the poorest areas of the United States in West Virginia and lived for years in a house without indoor plumbing or electricity.

CHILDREN’S BOOKS

Jayda and I continue to read through books on the Bluestem Award list. This month, we read, A Tangle of Knots. I had to listen to the first half of this book three times to understand what was happening. It’s written like a puzzle, telling the story of intertwined people who all have special talents in a slightly magical world. It was a fun book, and we enjoyed figuring it out together.

TV SHOWS

I’m not sure when or how I had time to watch TV this past month. However, I’m pretty sure I watched all of the available episodes of The OA on Netflix. This show definitely has some mature content, but I love this genre of science fiction and fantasy. It’s the story of a girl named Prairie, who was adopted, then disappears for seven years. When she resurfaces, she can suddenly see after being blind since a child, and she calls herself The OA.

Phew.

I’m writing this post on May 8, which shows you what a crazy month it’s been. I would love to hear from you! What was your favorite book, movie, TV show, podcast or activity in the past month?

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