My Favorite Podcasts

I was turned on to podcasts on a cold 2.5 hour drive to Hershey, PA this past December.  Mmm it feels good to say that given it was 100 degrees outside this week!  Anyways, in freezing-cold-icy-ahhh December, I found out about Serial – the podcast of podcasts that changed everyone’s view on podcasts.  And, I was instantly hooked.

Perhaps it was the mystery of it all, or Sarah Koenig’s voice, or the fact that I was truly convinced that I was going to solve the case.  Either way, Serial lent me privy to the magical world of podcasts, and my perception was forever changed.  What I once thought of as dry, NPR-style, dreary talk shows was transformed into enticing audio clips of story-telling, mystery, and just good ole fashioned candid discussions.

I might have fallen in love with Serial at first byte, but it was certainly not my last audio meal.  Here are my top five favorite podcasts from 2015.  And, of course, I’d love to hear about your favorites in the comments section!

1. Serial – Come hear about how Sarah Koenig cracks open a 16-year-old murder investigation, which originally resulted in the sentencing of a Baltimore high school student.  Listeners ride the wave of Sarah’s mind and actions as she objectively seeks to prove his innocence.

2. True Murder – My weird interest in murder investigations didn’t stop with Serial.  I’m also a big fan of The First 48 on A&E so there’s a high potential that something is wrong with me.  This podcast is about homicide, but in an interesting twist it includes interviews with the author of a crime book about a specific homicide.  Even if crime investigations are not your thing, you need to listen to the Man Overboard episode about Phil Champagne because it might be the oddest story that I’ve ever heard, and surprisingly has nothing to do with an actual death.

3. New Yorker Fiction – My FAVORITE podcast.  I am not afraid to admit that I listened to all 90+ episodes.  The format of this ‘cast includes an interview with a famous writer who reads a short story piece by another famous writer that once appeared in the New Yorker magazine.  Each piece is analyzed with the renowned New Yorker Fiction Editor, Deborah Treisman.  I love learning in nearly each episode about how most fiction is not really fiction at all.

4. Bald Move TV – Whether you’re watching Mad Men, Game of Thrones, Walking Dead, Better Call Saul or another relevant TV show, this podcast has you covered.  Two guys who have now made it their full time job to watch TV and discuss it in detail via an audio recording break down popular television shows each week through scene by scene analysis, character studies and good ole spoilers.  Yes – they really are living the dream.  Cue jealous thoughts.

5. Flawed Logic – If you’re into video games or other aspects of the entertainment industry, this podcast is funny and compelling!

What have you learned from your mother?

In honor of Mother’s day this upcoming Sunday, my brother, sister and I wanted to share things that we have learned from our mother. My mom reads all the posts on this blog so I hope this one finds a special place in her heart. I’d love to read in the comments what you have learned from your mother!

**

In response to the question, what have you learned from your mother?

Nicole, mom, me
mom and Nicole

“My mom is a superstar! I have learned so much from her, but three things really stick out:

Celebrate Today – Since the birth of her infamous “Wild & Wacky Wednesdays,” my mom has lived according to the philosophy that every day is a day to celebrate. I remember many times growing up when she would take my friends and me to Panera after school, or we would go out to eat on a Monday night “just because.” (Caitlin’s note: remember the ‘mental health days’ when we got to stay home ‘sick’ from school!) Within this practice was a very important lesson; there is only so much that can be wrong when you are at Cozumel (Ohio Mexican restaurant) eating delicious fajitas. Thus, my mom has taught me that by keeping perspective, we can choose to be happy every single day.

Change is painful – Shortly after my junior year of high school ended, I was going to a lot of graduation parties. Among the really yummy cake and fun times with friends, I got really sad at one of them and couldn’t figure out why. I looked around and saw all of these people just one year older than me, about to leave for college. I saw how much their lives were about to change, and I had the unsettling realization that, pretty soon, mine would be changing, too. When I got home, I cried. I didn’t even know why, but my mom did. “Change is painful,” she told me, “no matter what kind.”

 
Show love to everyone – My mom is a social butterfly. From her job, involvements, and social scene, she knows just about everyone in our community. She doesn’t just know them, she loves them. Everywhere we go, she offers friendly hellos, asks the person not some generic question, but something uniquely related to them, and gives her own genuine response. She sincerely cares about people and wants them to know that they are valued. By doing so, she has shown me what community is, and how to strengthen it.” -Nicole

Mom, Alex (baby bump), me, dad on our way to the hospital for Alex’s birth

mom and Alex

“She has taught me the importance of education, kindness and loyalty.  That education is the foundation to a successful life.  That kindness to others is a perpetual gift.  And that loyalty means not only being faithful to your friends, family and significant others, but to yourself; to your own goals, hopes and dreams.” – Alex

Me and mom

me and mom

There are a number of unique things that I have learned from my mother. One is a statement that I mentioned many times on this blog, which is “to celebrate every year of your life.” I think what my mom really taught me through that statement, and many of her other actions and words, is that each person has a unique journey and story in their life, and his/her  job is to go live it.  Mom – thank you for being an endless source of support as I continue to pursue my dreams and passions!

Ps. Thank you for also teaching us that even the worst fashion faux pas’ can be overcome. ;)

The fam