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It’s Guest Post Fortnight on Known & Renowned! Today’s guest post was written by Julie Caldwell. Julie and I met at freshman orientation for college, where we played ping pong. Over the next four years, she became one of my closest friends. Julie is currently pursuing her Master’s degree at Taylor University. Even though we don’t always have the same opinions on everything (Big Girls Don’t Cry, for example), I respect her tastes and knew she’d have some great recommendations for us. Also, Julie once traveled to Narnia, so anything she likes is probably Aslan-approved. 

Hello everyone! I am thankful for the opportunity Laura has given me and hope this post meets your expectations.

Band: The LumineersSince my summer includes countless hours on a lawn mower, I have been listening to more music per day than I have in a long time. I decided to broaden my horizon and someone mentioned The Lumineers. At first listen, I was hooked. They have an interesting story, which you can read here.

Website: Amazon’s MP3 Music StoreEveryone knows about Amazon, but I am not sure if everyone knows about their MP3s. I used to purchase all my music on iTunes. Those days are long gone. Before I buy anything, I compare the prices on Amazon and iTunes. When you purchase from Amazon, the songs are downloaded automatically to your iTunes. While I do not take advantage of it, Amazon also has a Cloud Player for you to use on your personal computer or mobile device.

Twitter: Amazon MP3You probably think I am crazy, but I just need you to understand how drastically this can change your life if you purchase your music digitally. Since the end of November, I have purchased a total of 84 songs including 8 full albums. A great deal of that music was purchased at a significantly lower price than on iTunes, partly because they tweet their deals and special offers.

Book: One Step at a Time by Josh BleillAfter hearing Josh speak at a conference I attended, I was intrigued enough to put his book on my summer reading list. The book is an honest, insightful, and eye opening journey through the life of Marine Josh Bleill as he serves in Fallujah, endures rehab as a double amputee, and ends up working for the Indianapolis Colts.

Organization: Semper Fi FundMentioned in Josh’s book, this non-profit organization provides immediate financial support for injured and critically ill members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their families. According to their website, they have issued more than 44,000 grants totaling more than $63 million to over 8,000 of our heroes and their families since 2004. Apparently the fund was started by two Marine wives who did so by reading Nonprofit Kit for Dummies. Unbelievable.

Blog: Things Organized NeatlyThis blog is literally pictures of things organized neatly and is easily one of my favorite blogs. From baking ingredients to tools, I enjoy each picture and find it relaxing to look at.

State: IndianaI know this might sound super lame, but I am loving my state this summer. I have rediscovered old places, adventured to new places, enjoyed living somewhere different, and rekindled my love of summer in Indiana. It is nowhere near perfect, but it is home. If I was in charge of marketing for Indiana, my tagline would be “the state you should take a chance on.”

– Julie Caldwell

I promise Julie does not work for Amazon ;) And I’m sure you all know my opinion on the best state ever, but spending four years in Indiana (and watching a heavy dose of Parks and Rec) made me learn to enjoy the flatlands. 

You can read previous Re:commends here.

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