Buenos días! I’m currently running on Dominican time, which means that although the working world has properly celebrated and moved on with the New Year, I am taking my sweet time to savor this new beginning. The idea hit me while I was eating toast and drinking juice this morning that it might be nice to compile an orderly summary of impactful, memorable pieces I encountered in 2014. So thus, here we are:
A Few of My Favorite Books:
1. Man’s Search For Meaning By: Viktor Frankl
There is no language strong enough to describe my love for this text. The reader faces a new portion of wisdom with each page, and consequently, the desire to share it with the world. If you do anything at all in the new year, READ THIS LITTLE BOOK.
2. Guns, Germs, and Steel By: Jared Diamond
While this is admittedly a formidable chunk of literature, it contains many answers to historical questions and a solidly thought-out thesis, making it well worth the time investment.
3. Walden By: Henry David Thoreau
Grab this classic piece of American literature to revel in next to a crackling fire and a cup of hot cocoa. Thoreau has some very healthy thoughts; we would do well to spend some time ruminating upon his perspective.
4. How to Win Friends and Influence People By: Dale Carnegie
This is basically an instruction manual for people. Even my 17-yr old bother – oh I mean brother – read it and liked it. Carnegie knew what it’s all about and successfully conveys that wisdom in his book.
5. Defending the Free Market By: Rev. Robert Sirico
I first encountered Fr. Sirico when my Macroeconomics class was lured from our warm beds earlier this year to catch his 8am speech. I was shocked to find myself 110% captivated by his words and even distraught when it was over. Immediately purchasing and reading his book, I’ve been a fan ever since. He succinctly professes common-sense truths that the reader will recognize are familiar to himself.
*Honorable Mention: The Beautiful and the Damned By: F. Scott Fitzgerald
A Few of My Favorite Recipes:
1. Whole Wheat Greek Yogurt Pancakes : Drizzle with honey and cinnamon and you get pure BLISS. And this is coming from a girl who typically doesn’t like pancakes.
2. Pumpkin and Chickpea Hot Pot : Stumbled upon this beauty while researching vegetarian recipes for my Fall service trip. It’s a perfect blend of homey yet exotic flavors.
3. Parker House Rolls Recipe : The credit goes to my little sister for first discovering this one– hands down the best rolls our Thanksgiving table ever saw, and that’s saying a lot.
4. Skinny Spinach and Artichoke Dip : My go-to when I’m expecting to entertain company. While that level of planning usually doesn’t happen in the collegiate lifestyle, it’s still a delicious back-pocket kind of deal.
5. Fairy Bread : There’s just something about it. 🙂
*Honorable Mention: Pandan Rice Cake. Watch the entirety of this video and you will get the daily crying-laughing bout you deserve. Also, will someone please actually make this and get back to me so I can try some.
A Few of My Favorite Articles:
2014 was the year that I took up running at least 5x a week, and it has been the best decision I’ve made to date.
“Traveling may not seem like it, but the feeling of pure bliss that I get when I see a place with my own eyes that I have admired for years from pictures and books, is the most consistent feeling I have ever known.”
This. Only because I joke (but not really) that my backup plan in life is to move to Assisi, Italy and open a small bakery. Be prepared to massively crave the cutest carbs…
I just can’t wait to have a personal library of my own someday…
Absolutely exhilarating. It feels more than good to be working toward a goal, and this blog has been helpful beyond belief.
*Honorable Mention: Marriage Isn’t For You
A Few of My Favorite Places:
When an old friend makes an appearance in either Milwaukee or Omaha, these are the primary feeding locations that pop into my mind and rightfully so. Not only does each offer top-notch meals, snacks, or drinks, but the atmospheres are simply spot-on. Grab a few friends and do your tongue and tummy a favor.
My go-to movie locations. The Oriental is positively majestic and guarantees a breathtaking movie experience, while Film Streams is convenient, clean, and excellent at what they do.
3. St. John’s Church at Creighton
Two words: Bell tower.
The kind of places you can wander through all day without even realizing it, and still leave wanting more.
Is there ANYTHING more heavenly than a properly done brunch?
*Honorable Mention: Fresh Fresh cafe in Cabarete
A Few of My Favorite Quotes:
“Be not afraid of greatness. Some are born great, some achieve greatness, and some have greatness thrust upon them.”
-William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night
“If you want to write, practice writing. Practice it for hours a day, not to come up with a story you can publish, but because you long to learn how to write well, because there is something that you alone can say.”
– Ann Patchett
“Nothing is more practical than finding God, than falling in Love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love
with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you do with your evenings, how you spend your weekends, what you read, whom you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in Love, stay in love, and it will decide everything.”
“I’m going to make everything around me beautiful — that will be my life.”
-Elsie de Wolfe
“I never travel without my diary. One should always have something sensational to read on the train.”
-Oscar Wilde, The Importance of Being Earnest