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A Book of Poetry + 3 More Things

In a weird sort-of meta way, you guys loving anything we publish that’s Saving My Life-themed is a little thing that’s saving my life. That, and it being October 1 today. Hooray for fall!

So, in the spirit of last Friday’s post, I thought I’d share a few things making everything a little sweeter in my life these days.

1. A fantastic sitcom.

I’ve been a fan of The Good Place since about halfway through season 1. I watched new episodes as they trickled out weekly, and like lots of people, I was just about to pass on the show as a must-watch addition to my repertoire — until that season’s finale.

Y’all, it’s so good. The character development, the one-liners, the clever twists, the sneaking-in of deeper philosophical stuff: it’s all my jam. Sure, the eschatology is questionable, but who watches a sitcom for theological accuracy?

A few favorite lines:

Eleanor: I used to think about how it’s weird they don’t make pants that are just one big pant leg for both your legs.
Chidi: You mean a skirt?
Eleanor: No! You’re not getting it and my thing is different so shut up.

Michael: It’s a rare occurrence, like a double rainbow. Or like someone on the Internet saying, “You know what? You’ve convinced me I was wrong.”

Gen: It’s actually not hot sauce. It’s envy. Or actually, the concept of envy. It’s really good on Mexican food; it gives it a little kick.

Tahani Al-Jamil: Quvenzhané Wallis and Stephen Hawking in the same room, discussing me? Guess they must’ve made up.

Jason: I’m too young to die and too old to eat off the kids’ menu. What a stupid age I am!

And fun fact… The Good Place the Podcast is a fantastic podcast hosted by Marc Evans Jackson, who plays Shawn (you probably know him even if you haven’t yet seen the show; he also plays Kevin Cozner on Brooklyn 99). The best episodes are with Mike Schur, the show’s creator.

2. Not being on Facebook.

It’s not the first time I’ve talked about this (nor the last, I’m guessing), but it’s now officially been more than a year since I was actively on Facebook, and I truly don’t miss it.

I still pop on about once a week, to check in on our Facebook group, but otherwise, my not actively engaging on there has proved a net-positive in my life, and I’m happier for it.

Now’s not the time to deep-dive into why (though I may sometime, if I finally clarify my thoughts as to why), but let’s just say I officially stopped engaging on FB when I read Deep Work, by Cal Newport, last year, and it turned into a habit as I kept reading his blog. Along with, you know, news-worthy stuff.

I’ve honestly felt so much better about my relationships, how I spend my time, and in-person connection. It’s been so worth it to me.

3. Perfume I actually love.

You know that whole don’t-use-it-up-because-it’s-good phenomenon, whether that’s a candle, an essential oil, or some other sort of treat? The past few years I’ve been better at that, which means I’m actually enjoying a few little things. One of those things is this perfume.

Yeah, Phlur’s a podcast sponsor, but I was already way interested in trying them out before they even approached us about supporting the show. My aunt was visiting from out of state and I loved the scent she was wearing. Turns out it was from a company whose headquarters were just a few miles from our house.

I’ve never been a big perfume fan because of the inevitable headache, but since Phlur makes theirs with good stuff, I’ve had zero problems spritzing on a bit in the morning and enjoying it all day.

My current go-to scent is Hepcat, but I also love Moab. It makes me feel dressed up, even when I’m working from home or running errands.

(This isn’t a sponsored post or anything; I just genuinely love them. But if you want to check ’em out, you can head here and use our podcast promo code SIMPLE to get 20% off your custom sample set.)

4. A beautiful book of poetry.

My friend Emily first read out loud from To Bless the Space Between Us, by John O’Donohue, this past spring when I visited her in North Carolina. When she read from it again during Literary London? I ordered a copy so that it’d be waiting for me when I got home.

This is a gorgeously-written collection of blessings, for both everyday inspiration and to add weight to special occasions. There’s blessings for friendship, new beginnings, and in praise of air, as well as for passing a graveyard (!), for farmers, and for when someone does you wrong.

It’s haunting. I keep it by my nightstand. (p.s. we should all read more poetry…)

We’ll be sharing more What’s Saving My Life posts and episodes this fall, so be looking for them! In the meantime, share in the comments one thing currently saving your life right now — I’d love to hear.

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Reading Time:

3 minutes





  1. Sarah M

    Yes to more poetry, less FB, and The Good Place. It took me about 3 episodes to be laughing so hard I was crying. I *love* the one-liners and the characters. Kristen Bell was the perfect choice for Eleanor. I’ve only watched S2’s first episode on netflix so I’m way behind (hi from Canada!) but I love it. It’s smart and funny and so quirky.

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Yes! It took me most of the first season to get into it, but season 2 is SO GOOD. You’re in for a treat!

  2. Kelly Wiggains

    I’ve been seeking out more poetry lately, too. Have you read Mary Oliver? She’s been writing for decades, but I only just discovered her about a year ago. She calms my spirit and says the things I need to hear.

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Mary Oliver is the best! One of my top 5 poets, for sure.

  3. Melanie

    Yes, to The Good Place and the official podcast. The show makes me laugh and it makes me think. Learning about how the show is made and the ideas behind it on the podcast adds another layer to my appreciation of the show.

    • Tsh Oxenreider


  4. Cindy

    Timely post for me right now. Gentle yoga saves my life every week. Helps me connect with my body and not my mind.
    Call the Midwife and The Great British Baking Show have helped take my mind off the chaotic state of affairs.
    David Whyte’s essays Consolations: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words is always on my nightstand and read almost every night. So beautiful and always touches my soul. You must get if you don’t have!

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      I haven’t heard of that essay collection, so thanks for putting it on my radar! Will look it up.

      • Cindy

        His poetry is just as amazing. Try “Pilgrim” or his newest one is “The Bell and the Blackbird”.

  5. Lyndsay G

    Tsh- I’m so glad to see you posting again. I have missed your voice in this medium. Thank you.

    • Tsh Oxenreider

      Thank you, Lyndsay! Looking forward to being on here more often.

  6. Holly W

    I absolutely LOVE The Good Place. (Did you know there’s a The Good Place add-on in the Google Chrome webstore? (it’s free) — it makes TGP type word replacements and lets you search with a Janet. simple, free fun! And while it’s not poetry, Terry Tempest Williams is a go-to writer for inspiring prose. Thanks for sharing these!

  7. Jaime

    Local Honey Crisp apples!

  8. Lynn

    New episodes of The Good Place! And always The Next Right Thing Podcast.

  9. Amy D

    Yes to no Facebook. I’ve been off for months now, and it has brought me so much joy!

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