Photo of AJ facing away from the camera outside. She sits at a picnic table with a computer in front of her.

August Introductions

Welcome to everyone who is new around here! I’m Amy Julia, and I wanted to take a minute to introduce myself this August: 

1. I started out as a blogger 17 years ago, when I didn’t even know what a blog was. Our daughter Penny had just been born and diagnosed with Down syndrome, and my friend Jocelyn set up a blog for me so I could share updates with family and friends. Social media didn’t even exist at that point. I started writing weekly updates, which eventually led into this space where I share thoughts about disability, spirituality, and meritocracy through the lens of our life as a family. 

2. We spend some part of our summers in Madison, CT, where my family has had a cottage on the Long Island for five generations. It’s not always as picture-perfect as Instagram/FB makes it look, but it is pretty glorious to return to the same place year after year. My grandfather taught me how to sail here. My sister Kate and I wandered through the grassy marsh and jumped in the river and created films of all the younger cousins lovingly mocking the older relatives here. As we come to the end of the summer, I am grateful for this place.

3. I have been wondering what color I should call my hair. I stopped getting highlights 18 years ago, when I was pregnant with Penny. Ever since then, I’ve wondered if I have blonde hair or brown hair. My children tell me that Google says I am a dark blonde, but they think light brown is more accurate. 

4. I am a very good winker. I have no party tricks to speak of, but I can still impress my kids with my ability to wink one eye and then the other in rapid succession.

5. I’m thinking a lot these days about Christian humanism, which is a strand of Christian thought that asks questions about what it means to flourish as humans, in our bodies, minds, spirits, and in community. I’ve learned a lot from Anne Snyder Brooks at Comment magazine on this topic, and I hope this space and the writing and speaking I’m doing will point us back to our shared, vulnerable, strong, beloved, and messy humanity. 

How about you? What are you grateful and/or nostalgic for as summer wanes? What color is your hair? What are you thinking about? And do you have any party tricks?

More with Amy Julia:

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