As I droned on and on about in this recent post about the stirring of my soul, October has been a hard month. Thinking back to the past few weeks, the parts that unfortunately stick out are the moments of anxiety over where my life is leading.
Then, as I sat down to gather some photos from October, I realized that other than those private little meltdowns, this month has been packed with goodness. It’s been really, really awesome.
A recap of October, according to my Instagram:A few weeks ago, one of my dearest, best friends moved back to the Philly burbs from Washington, DC. With her she brought fierce devotions to clean energy, feminism & Amy Poehler. She also fueled the idea of a little book club among us 20somethings living back in our hometown, and we started the month with our first meet. We discussed The Interestings (verdict: slow at first, quirky, intriguing sentiments, an inevitable strong attachment to the characters, definitely worth a read) whilst chomping on cheese and cookies and Junior Mints.The first Saturday of October was spent celebrating the marriage of a Penn State Altoona classmate & her high school sweetheart! The reception was held at Belle Voir Manor in Bensalem & had beauteous views of the Delaware River.
That Sunday, Jim & I took a little bike ride down by the Schuylkill. Pictured here: Boathouse Row, killin’ it, as usual, duh. Without realizing it was the opening day of the new Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk — a gnarly new walkway that stretches out into the Schuylkill River & allows amazefest new views of the city — we arrived at the scene and indulged in the festivities. Soft pretzels, face painting, jazz bands, Philly pride, etc. Too good.Amy came home the next weekend and we made a special trip to go see little baby Caitlyn! I love her little smiling chubby face too much.Sometimes I’m really basic. Let it be.
On this day, I woke up, went to the gym, showered, got coffee, and was on my way to work by 7am. I apparently thought this called for a selfie while holding the coffee cup with the drinking hole facing away from me. Whatever. I’m still gonna take that day as a win.
My DARLING friend Ali (Alfred for short) is such a stunner. I could sing the Ali praises all day and all night, but I’ll keep it as short as I can: Ali is a firefighter, and she has more passion and fire (see what I did there) than any other person I’ve ever met. She’s been in the service for almost a decade, and in that time she’s endured bullying, sexism, and has been attacked on several levels by fellow firemen simply because she is female. Ali wrote a book about her experiences, and now travels around giving book talks, speaking at conferences and schools, and participating in organizations that help her spread her message. She is a superstar and she is my biggest inspiration for wanting to lead a life that is right for me.
Ali was in Philadelphia for the PA Women’s Conference this month, and stayed with me one night in Glenside! We went to my favorite little hometown bar, met with another one of my favorite State College pals, Taylor, and we talked & gossiped & laughed. A perfect night. (Side note: look at Taylor’s face. DAMN.)
One day Mollie texted me: “Do you want to go to a pumpkin patch this weekend?”
At first, I was hesitant. A pumpkin patch? How old are we? I wanted to get some writing done that day and I was really stressed from miscellaneous life pressure so I almost declined the offer.
Then Mollie said: “Joe said it’s called Kohler Farm. I’ve never been but he said it was great.”
That’s all it took. I was IN. I had gone to Kohler Farm every year as a child, riding the hayride, feeding the goats and pigs, picking out pumpkins and eating pumpkin ice cream. The NOSTALGIA! So I went, and we did all of those things this year, too.
When we heard that Ingrid Michaelson was playing in Lancaster, we dismissed the fact that it was at hour and a half drive away and bought tickets. Mollie & I drove out from Philly, my sister & her roommate drove down from State College. Ingrid just keeps getting better. She is a godsend. She is heavenly. She is divine.
The last weekend of October was spent in Bethany Beach, Delaware, where my pal Sarah’s parents own a condo. My five best friends from high school got together and we essentially had a weekend-long sleepover. We wore our cozy clothes, we drank endless wine and margaritas, we played heated board games, took naps, watched TV and talked and cried and laughed. It had been the first time we were all together in more than 3 years and we were all so grateful to be in each others’ presence. There really aren’t any words for the love.Another one of my #fallstagrams.
November is another busy month: friends visiting from Pittsburgh, relatives visiting from Dallas, a trip to Denver, I’m taking the GREs, Thanksgiving, my 5 year high school reunion!