Life updates and July Goodreads

This summer is flying, and I cannot believe that the last time I wrote a “goodreads review” was in February! So much in life has changed. Photography season has been in full swing since Spring, and I still am still adjusting to living in Chicago and not feeling like I am just visiting. The last few months have been incredibly eye opening. A good friend of mine told me that we are constantly changing as people, and I am starting to see the truth in that statement through many of the bigger life decisions that I have made in the past few 6 months.

Life is hard no matter where you live. It is a beautiful mess, and changing my location has forced me to really dig deep within myself and hear what God is teaching me without the distractions I once had. Through the ups and downs I would not change it for anything though, and I am grateful for this season of significant change. Here are a handful of highlights of the Summer!

Moving day : May 1st , 2015 

Making my new apartment feel like home

My best friend now lives within a 5 min walk from my apartment. WHAT.

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Rode my first Divvy bike and realized how terrifying and hilarious it is to share a road with Chicago traffic

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The temptations of living near so many ice cream shops  …  🙂

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I saw my first country concert and was able to share the experience with this best friend of mine

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Watched my brother perform outdoors at Jay Pritzker Pavilion

 Witnessed my two sweet friends get engaged on a sailboat

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My new running backdrop went from a small neighborhood to Chicago’s beautiful skyline

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Now for some July Goodreads: 

 During wedding season I tend to read a lot more fiction, and I really enjoyed the diversity of these three reads.

Carry the One ( Carol Anshaw) : I loved the style of this author’s writing and her ability to make me somehow have compassion for characters that, in real life, probably would have driven me crazy with some of their destructive life decisions. This book follows the lives of three siblings after a tragedy that took place 25 years prior. I was constantly surprised in this read and was fascinated watching each character cope in different ways through their shared experience. I was gripping onto this read to see what the final outcome would come of each character. Definitely a deep, emotional book for those who like that style of fiction storylines.

Luckiest Girl Alive (Jessica Knolls) : This book shocked me. I picked it up thinking it would be a fluffy, mindless read. NOPE. In the beginning it felt that way. A classic story of a young girl with a high class lifestyle, and a hunk of a fiance that she, Ani, was going to soon marry. However, during the months of her engagement she is forced to relive a terrible tragedy for a reunion school interview. The things that take place in the book I would have NEVER expected. A great reminder that people who look like they have everything together are often the most wounded. For real, read this. My favorite book this month!

One Plus One (Jojo Moyes): Last year, I read this author’s book “Me Before You” and loved the storyline and writing style. This book was definitely enjoyable, but not quite as gripping. A single mother of two, low income family, falls for a man that she cleans for (just one of her jobs). When their lives cross outside of work, they are brought together in an amazing way. Often while reading this I wanted to shake the lead, Jess, and tell her to suck up her pride, and stop making life so much more difficult when people wanted to love her. It was fun watching the development of each character and to see how much you can be changed, for the better, by the people brought into your life.

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