October 2017 In Review

{Y’all. October was a long month – in the very best way possible. It felt like SO much happened and fit into that 31 day span. And now November has been rushing by far too fast, so… We’ll just pretend like this month review isn’t nearly half a month late.}


What I focused on in October:

  1. Lots of busyness with juggling my two nonwriting jobs during a busy time with my retreat job
  2. Catching up on book reviews and, well, lots of reading
  3. Soaking in being home in October/learning/life/family time/being sick


Reading Update

Fiction: 8
Nonfiction: 7
Book Reviews: I’m not sure, but I know I caught up from previous months
Audio Books: 7
{Yeah. I read a lot.}

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Nights Gone: 5
New States or Countries: None

{Craziness, I felt so very happy and blessed to get to stay in beautiful Ohio during the entire glorious month of October. That hasn’t happened in October for a while.}



In October of 2017 wanted to….

  1. Write Weekly Goals {YES! – I might have missed part of one week}
  2. Eat Paleo (except coffee) 21 days {Loosely – very loosely translated as paleo, but YES}
  3. Get to bed by 10:30 10 times {Ha! I totally lost track}
  4. Switch winter/summer clothes {YES}
  5. Vlog 4 times {YES}
  6. Blog by 9:30 20 times {YES – I think so anyway?}
  7. Edit 10,000 words on Echoes {Cute. No.}
  8. Read 3 non-fiction books {YES}
  9. Get writing program on computer & Work on Plotting book {YES to the first and NO to the second}
  10. Focus on getting into the correct rhythm at coffee shop {YES}
  11. Catch up on reviews for all the books I’ve read in the last few months {YES}
  12. Blog about: Coffee Shop Job, 25 Before 25 Update, Birthday Musings, Monthly Review, and Take part in at least 2 Link-ups {I did one link-up, one tag, so counting that}


What I’ve Been Learning


Y’all. I read a treasure trove of fantastically wonderful nonfiction books in October. There were so many four and five star reads it makes me wish I could always have so much “success” in the books I choose.

Calm, Cool, and Connected reminded me to continue working on something that I’ve been trying to implement into my life for a while. Technology and social media are wonderful as tools, but I am adamantly against them being masters. It’s so easy to turn to my phone whenever I have a few free moments and either browse online or else read a book, or even just “clean up.” (I can’t stand having notifications or excess things on my phone.) BUT! It’s not healthy or who I want to be when I’m always turning to my phone. I’m trying to get much better at being detached from my technology and really only getting on it when I have a certain purpose in mind. (I’m still on it a lot, but working at only doing so intentionally.)

True Identity was another hugely helpful book because it’s something I’ve been working on learning for years now. My identity and satisfaction can’t come from what I accomplish because when it does I never feel satisfied or good enough because it’s simply impossible for me to do enough to make myself happy. But, I don’t need to be enough or try and do enough. Because who I am, where my worth comes from, is who I am in Christ. And yes, I’m still working on doing what I can and should do, but there’s a huge difference between that and the pressure I’ve put on myself for so much of my life.

In addition to learning from reading, October was good for learning from other things, too. I went to a weekend retreat where I very much enjoyed turning my phone off, put it away, and just focusing on people and God and what I could learn. That weekend provided a lot of food for thought and reminded me where I currently am and where I’m heading and how thankful I am for various things.

Vlogging was another area where I spent some time learning and growing in October and having a lot of fun at it. I’m so glad I took up that new venture in life.

And folks, this is what happens when I don’t review the month right away – I begin to forget what months I learned certain things. #OhWell




As I mentioned above I went on a weekend retreat. It was with my group from church and it was lovely. I work at a retreat so I’m used to doing all the little behind the scenes things and being a part of the staff. Therefore it was SO WEIRD to be on the other side of the line – being an actual attendee. (It wasn’t at the retreat center where I work though.) I wasn’t really looking forward to attending because serving is much more of my comfort zone… but I knew that if I was going to be an attendee with anyone, I would want it to be with the group I was going with. It ended up being fantastic and I am so thankful for that weekend.

I had fun randomly going to my adopted parent’s house a few times, including once for the night. There are some months where I don’t get to see them, so getting to hang out three times in one month was pretty great. One of the times I took my little brother so we could have some brother-sister time because we don’t get to hang out as much as we used to.

In addition to everything else, I watched the Children’s Hosptial Marathon in Columbus with my best friend while her husband ran the half marathon. I also spent some time hanging out at my sister’s house, worked on editing Echoes, and musing over the fact that I’m now a quarter of a century old and how that actually doesn’t change much. I also spent huge amounts of time inwardly (and sometimes outwardly) gushing over how glorious October is and how thankful and happy I am to live in Ohio, especially during this time of year.

Near the end of the month, I was delighted when one of my most wonderful friends in all of forever came early to surprise me. Hosanna was planning on helping out at a retreat I was working at, but having her come early was simply amazing because then we got to spend some good, quality time together outside of work.


What were some of your highlights for October? (Or was that so long ago that you already forget?)

2 thoughts on “October 2017 In Review

  1. Bekah says:

    I can sympathize on the lesson you learned about your worth in God. It’s so easy for me to try to do more to somehow earn more of God’s favor when, in fact, I have it because of Jesus Christ. There’s nothing I could do to make Him love me more or somehow hold me up in higher regard.

    I’m so glad you had a good month of October, friend!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lydia Howe says:

      Yep! That’s so right. And I figured I must not be the only one out there who struggles with this. 🙂
      October was a fantastic month and I’m so thankful for it as well. Blessings on your November, Bekah!


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