Captivations is a monthly feature with links, stories, and news that captivated me. It’s also a monthly update/recap of what’s going on in my world. Here’s a summary for September 2023.
I love a month that starts with celebrations – a friend’s birthday dinner – and ends with celebrations – Oktoberfest at a brewery. In between were lots of football games and lots of food. I tried a whopping 25 places in Austin this month! There was also a lot of prep for our BIG trip next month but more on that later.
La Casita Bakeshop
When I was in Dallas this month, I stopped by a local bakery and got the above photo selection. So many great treats! They’ve grown so much since 2017 and have won lots of awards and nominations. Stop by if you’re ever in the area.
There are animal cameras set up everywhere, all for research like The University of Texas’ falcon cam on top of the tower and – my favorite – a coral reef camera on the shore of the Big Island. Well, there is one in remote Alaska in Katmai National Park because of their brown bears, and recently, a distressed hiker was seen on the camera. Viewers alerted park rangers and a search and rescue team located him three hours later. Wow!
What can make you happier? This 85-year research study has gathered the 7 things we should do. If you need me, I’ll be working on my coping style.
Tom Holland and Jay Shetty
I happened upon this interview with Jay Shetty, an internet personality with a hit podcast, and Tom Holland, an actor you probably know as Spiderman. I don’t typically like conversation podcasts, but I was drawn to their natural chemistry and the conversation topics. They talk about the beauty of nature, a once-in-a-lifetime whale experience, and how to be at peace with yourself.
If you’ve been reading my blog for a while, you know life lessons are abundant. I’m drawn to these articles and wisdom that we can use to improve our lives. Honestly, it is a lot about preventing regret. Here’s a list of 8 things you should try to bring more meaning to your life.
One of the things on the list is having conversations about death. I recently read The Collected Regrets of Clover, a fiction novel about a death doula. The character talks about how people, especially in the U.S., are so afraid to talk about death that it makes the subject uncomfortable and taboo and makes the act mysterious and painful. I really hope the conversation can shift because I think it can alleviate pain for many. (Read this post for more about death.)
Hello, fall! We’ve been waiting for you. Here comes the quick slide to the end of the year. It’s always a busy time. Here are some posts that might be helpful:
- 20 Things for Your Austin Fall Bucket List
- Best Farmers Markets in Austin
- Favorite 10 Fall Recipes + Fall Bucket List
- 18 Soup Recipes for Cold Weather
This article about emotional debt is a good read and something to ponder on. We accumulate emotional debt through stress and it affects us whether we see it or not. Being able to release the debt – perhaps this is the coping style from the above article – can help us be more productive people and leaders.
Happiest Cities in the US
What do you think about this list of the top 15 happiest cities in the U.S.? One Texas city made the list: Plano at #10.
Mono No Aware
The Japanese have an idiom called “mono no aware” that is so thoughtful. It means “the pathos of things” or “empathy toward things.” In the phrase, it recognizes that we can enjoy things – a place, a season, a moment – but there is still impermanence. It’s a reminder to savor everything because we only know it at this moment.
5 Things I Love Lately
- Cake/dessert – the season is starting for prime baking!
- Cooler weather – thank goodness for temperatures under 100!
- Variety of food this month – from a frozen personal pizza cooked in the air fryer to homemade luffa squash stir fry
- Indonesia memories – I’ve been prompted with photo memories since this trip happened four years ago
- This Half-Baked Harvest One Pan Chipotle Honey Chicken and Rice recipe
I hope magic keeps finding you and that you have the patience and awareness to see it. Thank you for reading my blog!