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One of my favorite things about blogging is the connections it allows me to make all over the world. I wrote recently about my contentment, after years of aching for a bigger world, to find that there was one at my fingertips. I just had to be brave enough to venture out into it. Because there, on the other side of a screen, are people, just like me, writing about their lives, their hopes, their disappointments, their victories and their reflections. Just like I do.

One of those people is Claudette.

Claudette and I “met” through a mutual blog that we follow and now, months and months later, we are blog buddies.

From posting parts of her memoir to sharing the ups and downs of parenting, I love hearing Claudette’s perspective on life.

I tell you about Claudette, Writer of Words, to give props to her for her fabulous writing, but to also properly credit her for the idea I’m about to steal.

As a weekly segment on her page, Claudette will share what she’s been reading. Everything from recipes to fascinating articles on nature, parenting, tech – all sorts of interesting subjects.

I intend to do the same, except, y’all know me. It won’t be weekly. And it will likely be a hodgepodge of “stuff”. But maybe you’ll find it to be interesting. At the very least you might find a new recipe to try or a new podcast to listen to.

So, without further adieu, I give you:

2019 Randoms – Episode 1

1. The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Last weekend, this show won a couple of Golden Globes. It’s an Amazon Prime original, and if you don’t like sex or profanity, just skip on down to the next item. If you can handle such things and not take yourself too seriously, I highly recommend this show. It’s funny. It’s different. It’s charming. It’s casted perfectly. I’m only halfway into Season 1 and I’m in love.

I’m not a tv junkie, but I have taken to watching episodes of this show during my lunch break, so I guess you could say things are getting pretty serious. Seriously funny.

2. Serial: Season 3

I just finished listening to this podcast having loved season 1, leaving in the midst of season 2 and returning for season 3.

The episodes in 3 are all centered around one courthouse in Cleveland, Ohio, and the ins and outs of the justice system and how it does and doesn’t represent courthouses across the U.S.

I found the stories shared this season deeply moving. There is so much underneath each and every narrative that makes one wonder how we get at the roots of the problems in society to fix the issues that lead to criminal activity by both cops and citizens alike.

3. Books I’m reading

I always said I wouldn’t read more than one book at a time, but I find myself doing it more and more. I am simultaneously reading The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (who attended my Alma Mater, woot woot!) and this month’s book club selection, Once Upon a River by Bonnie Jo Campbell.

Both of these books are difficult to read at times, but both have female main characters and an interesting array of others sprinkled throughout.

Both authors, so far, have done an amazing job and setting their scenes. I feel like I’m with them in the streets of their riot-filled city or on the banks of a rural river. Maybe that’s why I am able to do what I’ve never done before and be in the middle of two books at once, on purpose. Because they are so vastly different.

4. Something special

I’m going to throw in an extra here because I think everyone that loves books and libraries should listen to this episode of This American Life.

It’s rare that I chew on things for days like I did the episode of this podcast, but it deeply resonated with me.

I remember the library, as a child, being one of the first places that I looked forward to going. My mom used to take me and my sister all the time, and I credit my mom, that library, and a children’s librarian named Doug for instilling a love of reading within me that I still have and have passed on to my child.

If you carry heavy nostalgia about libraries also, or you’re just a fan of books or interesting stories, listen to this podcast. You won’t be disappointed.

Would love to hear about any recent favorites of YOURS in the comments!