Wow… my last Five for Friday post was in February! That’s hard to believe and yet, the facts don’t lie. But I have a lot to talk about today, so let’s dive in.
1) I ordered my first set of Chatbooks this week. If you’re unfamiliar with Chatbooks, their claim to fame is their Instagram photo books in which they automatically develop photo books of your Instagram photos for you. Each photo book includes 60 photos, so once you have 60 photos ready, they’ll send you an email and you can delete and resize photos as you want. They also do photo books for Facebook photos and your own photo roll, and have different types of photo books. But I just did their usual Instagram photo book with the 60 photos. It’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time: photo books of the pictures I’ve taken of Dutch throughout the years. I’ve taken so many photos of my little man and I wanted to have a stack of photo books to flip through whenever I want. So, this week, I downloaded the Chatbooks app and got to work deleting photos until I only had photos of Dutch. It took a long time because that’s six or seven years of photos to sort through! In the end, I was left with five photo books, which means I have at least 300 Instagram photos of my dog on my feed. And let’s not forget the fact that I deleted photos that were grainy or too dark or I didn’t like, sooo, that’s a lot of Dutch. I ordered the hardcover photo books for $15 and I’m getting my first one sometime in early February. (When you start using Chatbooks, you can set it up to get “caught up” on your pictures and receive a bulk set of photo books at one time, or opt for getting 1, 2, or 3 books a month until you’re all caught up. I’m doing one photo book a month.)
2) Every few years, I like to go through my “Want to Read” shelf on Goodreads and delete books I know I have no intention of reading. At the time I started deleting books, I had nearly 900 books on my shelf and I figured I would easily whittle that down to a more reasonable number. I deleted books that had a low overall rating (anything under 3.5 stars), books that had been released more than two years ago and had less than 1,000 reviews, and books that didn’t seem interesting to me anymore and hadn’t been reviewed by any of my friends. In the end, I only managed to delete around 250 books, leaving me with more than 600 books on my shelf. And I’m sure that, in no time at all, my “Want to Read” shelf will be at an unreasonable number once again because that’s just the way it works when you’re a bookworm.
3) As of today, I’m 92 days away from my cruise. My mom and I booked this cruise so far in advance that I haven’t been able to get excited about it (and, real talk, there has been a lot of worrying on my end on paying my half of the deposit, but it’s going to get done). I cannot wait for this cruise, though. It’s what I daydream about during particularly mundane days at work. We haven’t decided what excursions we’ll do because I haven’t researched about them just yet, but there’s this fun zip line and cave tubing excursion in Belize that I have my eyes on. If we make it happen, this will mean we’ve zip lined in four different countries!
4) Pushing publish on The State of My Faith today was incredibly difficult, but writing about my faith journey and where I am today was extremely cathartic to me. Most of the responses I received were positive and even the ones that weren’t came from a place of love and not condemning me at all. (As a sensitive person, I highly appreciate that!) I know faith can be such a tricky subject and a lot of us come to it with a whole lot of baggage and strong opinions. For me, it was important to talk about the way my faith has evolved over the years because I think it’s healthy and normal for that to happen.
5) What do you have planned for this weekend? I am taking it easy tonight to knock out a freelancing project. Tomorrow, I’m meeting up with friends at the Mini Donut Factory and then doing something with my mom: maybe pedicures and furniture “window shopping.” And Sunday will be a laid-back day of writing, running errands, cleaning my apartment, and sneaking in a long afternoon nap. Happy weekend!