Moi! & What I've Been Up To

One of my favorite times of the month is when I get to share what I'm up to in my currently post. I started sharing in December during a blog challenge, and I've loved doing it ever since. It gives me a bit of a blogging break, and it allows me to share a few of my favorite current things that perhaps I don't actually want to write a whole blog post about. :)

Listening to: Undisclosed, Serial, and NPR.

I'm not a podcast girl. Justin loves podcasts and talk radio, but I just don't. When I'm driving I need actual music, not some idiot (or intelligent person) talking at me. NPR journalists are a different beast entirely though. Their voices are sing song, calm, collected, and, as I read elsewhere on the internet, they could be talking about paint drying on a wall and it would still be interesting. I don't listen to NPR frequently or even that much at all, but I can't say I'm entirely disappointed when there isn't any other choice on the radio. I especially love hearing about the issues I find interesting like money, travel, the shipping of roses at Valentine's Day, the production of cheese in Switzerland, the school systems in Germany compared to the US, and topics related to immigrants and what the US does and doesn't do to protect their rights.

While NPR provides amazing stories that I would never have considered researching prior to hearing on the radio, I was still not terribly interested when Justin mentioned that I should listen to one of NPR's newest podcasts entitled Serial.

First of all, when Justin told me about "Serial" I thought he was referring to a breakfast food. I was thinking that's a pretty cool name for a podcast that airs in the morning. It could have a ton of implications… like something you do regularly along with brushing your teeth, making your bed, and watching the news. Despite my lack of initial interest, I gave it a listen. The basic synopsis was that NPR's journalist Sarah Koenig decided to delve into a year's worth of investigation and committing 12 episodes to one of my newest intrigues – that of the murder investigation of Hae Min Lee and whether or not prosecutors were correct in incarcerating Adnan Syed, a Pakistani who was 17 at the time, for life. Of course when I listened for the first time, I found the story interesting … and even perhaps a bit compelling, but it wasn't necessarily something I considered spending a lot of time listening to.

A few months later, by January of 2015, I started noticing that many of my friends were sharing articles about Serial on social media. Turns out this little podcast, that I had initially dismissed, was taking the world (or at least the US) by storm! Clearly I had to finish listening to this podcast!

So that's what Justin and I did. We listened for 4 hours on the way to a wedding in Nashville, Tennessee and 4 hours on the way back. I have to admit, at one point my ears were so tired of listening (they do that!), that I fell asleep. It's not that the story or the way she was telling it was boring – it wasn't! I just don't like listening to people talk for that long. Anyway, I finally discovered that the most productive way for me to listen was to edit photos while listening. So, last week during my spring break, I finished the podcast.

And then, I watched Raubia Chaudry talk at 3 different schools via youtube.

I was hooked!

If you don't know, Raubia Chaudry is an immigrant lawyer who has been friends with the Syed family for as long as she can remember. She has maintained Adnan's innocence from day one, and she is the person who first approached Sarah Koenig with the story hoping that new material would be uncovered that would help Adnan Syed's case.

While I do certainly believe that NPR tells interesting stories, there was so much more to this story than NPR, and more specifically Serial, could cover in 12 episodes. Along with the obvious – imprisoning a 17 year old for life based on one individual's testimony – there were also questions regarding issues of the treatment of race, how Adnan's lawyer handled the case, and the lack of evidence that was used during the proceeding. Is Adnan actually innocent? What all did Sarah Koenig skip over during Serial?

That's where Undisclosed comes in.

Undisclosed is a new podcast that just began this past Monday featuring Raubia Chaudry and two other lawyers as they discuss the case from that of a lawyer's perspective (given that they are all, in fact, lawyers). Without giving spoilers, there is a lot that was overlooked during the initial trials when Adnan Syed was convicted of murder. Perhaps through his story going public, through both Serial and Undisclosed, we can learn how to avoid this in the future…

In the mean time, I recommend giving Serial and Undisclosed a listen (in that order). Even if you hate podcasts and talk radio, you may find yourself surprisingly interested. :)

Remembering: going to Europe last year.

I've been editing images from the trip – one at a time, very slowly. As it turns out, I don't care about my images being truthful, I just want my images to ideal and perfect. There was one image I shot from Cinque Terre that I thought I was done with. But no. Nearly 6 months later I went back and edited it some more. I guess that's just the way I do it…

Giggling About: "Shut Up & Dance" by Walk the Moon

The little girl I watch showed me this music video.

What is this world coming to? ;)

Oh - and if you already know something about Serial, you should watch this. Justin made me – it's pretty hilarious. :)

Planning: TRAVEL!

Justin and I are talking about going to Asheville in the coming weeks to see the tulips and go biking. After that, we will possibly be going to Florida for a graduation. I love traveling, so I'm pretty excited about what's to come. :)

Anxiously Awaiting: the arrival of Sweetapolita on my doorstep!

I haven't reviewed enough cook books (dessert books?) recently. :)

Interested to Know: what Justin's and my finances will look like in a year.

We're currently in a transition period. We have the opportunity for our finances to grow a lot (or at least reduce our debt by a lot)! But there's also the chance that our savings will shrink … by a lot (trip to Europe, new car, etc…). I guess we will just have to wait this year out and see what happens.

Keeping A Secret:  I've really been enjoying date nights (and days) recently.

Justin and I have been so busy doing things for other people that it's been really nice for us to get out and do something for ourselves that isn't an errand.


Justin made oatmeal scottchies from Cookie Love over the weekend, and they were pretty amazing. :)

I've also, like I said, been photoshopping.

image from here

Reading: The End of Summer and Fifth Avenue, 5 A.M by Sam Wasson

Unfortunately my actual reading has been going pretty slow this month, but I'm still hoping to meet my goal of (a minimum) of 2 books for the month.

Here are the other books I've read and reviewed so far this year:

• the After series by Anna Todd
• A Lion In Paris by Beatrice Alemagna
• I Sold My Soul to the Devil For Vinyls … Pitiful, I Know on Wattpad
• Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
• Refinery 29 by Piere Gelardi and Christene Barberich
• Frites by Anne de la Forest

• Summer Rain on Wattpad
• Jeni's Splendid Ice Cream at Home by Jeni Britton Bauer
• How to Travel the World on $50 A Day by Matt Kepnes
• Food: A Love Story by Jim Gaffigan

• No Capes on Wattpad
• The Bro Code on Wattpad
• He Wanted the Moon by Mimi Baird

• Cookie Love by Mindy Segal

So what have you been up to recently? Have you read any of these books or listened to any of the podcasts I mentioned? What are some of your currentlys?

** Participate in the A-Z blogging challenge with me! You know you want to! :)

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