Getting Personal #128: June Goals Recap

Concrete road

Image Credit: BeautyBeyondBones

June was quite busy, but less hectic than some other months! The biggest news is we FINALLY have proper ductwork, and two new HVAC units! Perfect timing for the typical summer heat waves!!

Here’s the link to my June Goals post:

Ready?

Here we go!


  1. Attend P.E.O. State Convention. — Accomplished!
  2. See Incredibles 2. — Accomplished!
  3. See Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. — Accomplished!
  4. Work on a goals list with Al for the remainder of 2018. — Did not accomplish.
  5. Update the Household Bills spreadsheet. — Semi-Achieved.
  6. Write at least 1,000 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo endeavor. — Accomplished!
  7. Download Evernote. — Accomplished!
  8. Host a “vacationing doll” from Ohio! — Accomplished!

Here’s the breakdown:

Attend P.E.O. State Convention. — Accomplished!

See Incredibles 2. — Accomplished!

  • Al and I went to see it on Saturday, June 15th.
  • It wasn’t necessarily better than the original movie. However, it was worth the 14-year wait.
  • If you’re a fan of the original movie, it’s worth seeing it in the theaters. We also liked the short that preceded the movie.

See Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. — Accomplished!

  • We saw the movie on Sunday, June 24th with our friends Mike and Shana.
  • Despite some of the criticism, I really like what they did with this movie. I shut my eyes a few times – Some of it was pretty scary!
  • I personally recommend seeing it. I love the franchise!

Work on a goals list with Al for the remainder of 2018. — Did not accomplish.

  • This didn’t happen. Oh well!

Update the Household Bills spreadsheet. — Semi-Achieved.

  • I started playing catch-up last weekend, and will hopefully bring it to conclusion this weekend. Long overdue!

Write at least 1,000 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo endeavor. — Accomplished!

  • Word count, as of May 2nd: 33,507
  • June 16th: Added 623 words
  • Word count, as of June 16th: 34,130
  • June 23rd: Added 339 words
  • Word count, as of June 23rd: 34,469
  • June 29th: Added 250 words
  • Word count, as of June 30th: 34,719
  • Total words written: 1,212 words!

Download Evernote. — Accomplished!

  • I signed up for the website during the weekend of June 15th. I didn’t download anything, for now. But, I really like it so far! I love the layout, and I can see myself using it as another helpful tool with my writing.
  • Here’s the link to my latest Writing Adventures post: Writing Adventures #2: Discovering Evernote

Host a “vacationing doll” from Ohio! — Accomplished!


Final Thoughts

  • I was able to put Accomplished next to six out of eight goals. Awesome! I’m so excited, and proud of myself.
  • The one goal that was Semi-Achieved: I made progress, and I’m happy with it!
  • The one goal that I did not accomplish: This wasn’t a huge priority. I like the idea of it, but it may not happen for 2018. No worries!

What about you? Did you have any goals for the month of June?

Come back tomorrow to see my July Goals!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Tag #62: Spring Cleaning Book Tag

Spring Cleaning Book Tag

Image Credit: Fiction No Chaser

I was tagged by Teagan and Jess, of Fiction No Chaser, to do this hilarious book tag! I laughed so hard while reading their post, I nearly cried.

Here’s the link to the post where I was tagged:


Rules:

  • Please link back to Daniel @ Page to Page
  • Respond to the scenarios
  • Tag 5 people (or however many you like)

Spring Cleaning Tag

It’s time to make your bed, but you’re going to have some friends over later and want to pick the perfect book to place on your nightstand for them all to see that you’re “reading”. Which book do you choose?

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Image Credit: Goodreads

  • Camino Island by John Grisham. Most of my friends know that I love Grisham’s books.

Oh no! The house needs dusting, but you just can’t put that book you’re reading down! What book would you buy on audio just so you could continue the story while cleaning?

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  • I’m with Jess. I’ll choose podcasts over audiobooks any day. I love true crime podcasts, as well as several from NPR (Fresh Air, This American Life, Ask Me Another, Wait, Wait, Don’t Tell Me!Suspect Convictions).

Darn it! The ceiling is leaking! Turns out Mass-Market Paperbacks are the best things to soak water up! Which popular book do you use to soak up the water?

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Image Credit: Amazon

  • The entire Twilight series.

Bathrooms need a good scrubbing, and your 2007 Cosmos are a little outdated and need replacing. What book do you place in the bathroom for some light reading for when people need to take care of business?

  • I agree with Jess, again. I don’t read in my own bathroom.

Family is coming over, but you have no idea what to make for dinner! You read somewhere that tearing up the last chapter of a book whose ending you hated and sprinkling it in a casserole dish makes for the perfect meal! Which book do you choose?

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Image Credit: Amazon

  • Jess and I are kindred spirits, apparently! I would totally shred Allegiant, in a heartbeat.

Organization is key, right? When it comes time to organize your bookshelf, you realize you have enough room (and money) to get three new books! Which books do you buy?

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Image Credit: Barnes & Noble

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  • Caraval by Stephanie Garber
  • Picture Us in the Light by Kelly Loy Gilbert
  • Mosquitoland by David Arnold

Finally, some peace and quiet! But, before you can relax, you realize you forgot to send your Aunt a thank you gift for the lovely “ADULT LIFE FOR DUMMIES” book she gave you for Christmas (maybe she’s trying to tell you something?). What book do you send to her to show her how much (this is sarcasm) you appreciate her gift?

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Image Credit: Amazon

  • Hehe, I love Teagan’s answer! The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson.

Tag- You’re It!


I loved this tag, so much! I laughed so hard as I was writing this post.

Thanks again for tagging me, Teagan and Jess!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Adventure Time: Norfolk, VA Edition (Round 5 – Norfolk Tides Baseball Game)

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Image Credit: Ticketmaster

The Norfolk Tides are our home baseball team!

The Tides’ home, Harbor Park, opened on April 14, 1993. This year is it’s 25th anniversary!

The Tides are a minor league team in the Triple-A International League. Prior to 2007, the Tides were affiliated with the New York Mets for 38 years. For the last 11 years, the Tides have been a farm team for the Baltimore Orioles. Harbor Park can hold 11,856 people!

The long-time mascot is Rip Tide. He’s hilarious!

Image Credit: Wikipedia

And, yes, he has a baseball for a nose.

Not too long ago, the Tides changed their color scheme to green, black, orange, gray, and sea foam, and added a seahorse mascot.

For more information, check out this link: Norfolk Tides


On Tuesday night, we enjoyed a night of good food, a few drinks, great conversation, and the game with several of Al’s work colleagues, and the law firm that his company has on retainer. The law firm has one of the boxes at the park, and they offer tickets to any employees who are interested around once a year. Al scored an extra ticket, and asked if I wanted to go!

I can’t remember the last time I went to a Tides game. I think it was with Al, and I know we weren’t in a box! I felt super fancy.

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This was the Tides’ long-standing image/marketing. Image Credit: SevenVenues

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An aerial view of Harbor Park, which sits next to the Elizabeth River. Image Credit: The Virginian-Pilot

We left the game in the eighth inning, mainly because we knew the traffic would be bad once the game ended. The score was 3-2, with the Tides leading, when we left. I checked the final score yesterday, and that’s where the score remained! Go, Tides!


Do you follow baseball?

What are some of your favorite summer pastimes?


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Tag #61: My Blog’s Name in Books Tag

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Image Credit: Drifting Pages

If you haven’t checked out Jenna at Bookmark Your Thoughts, do it! She’s an amazing blogger who loves book reviews, yoga, and more!

I found this really fun tag on her blog last week, and decided to do it myself!

Here’s the link to Jenna’s post:


Rules:

  1. Spell out your blog’s name (…should’ve made a shorter name).
  2. Find a book from your TBR that begins with each letter. Note: you cannot ADD to your TBR to complete this challenge – the books must already be on your Goodreads TBR (…good grief!).
  3. Have fun!

H – Hidden Figures: The American Dream and the Untold Story of the Black Women Mathematicians Who Helped Win the Space Race, Margot Lee Shetterly

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Image Credit: Wikipedia

O – On the Come Up, Angie Thomas

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Image Credit: Goodreads

T – The Real Z, Jen Calonita

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Image Credit: Amazon

S – Spoiler Alert: The Hero Dies: A Memoir of Love, Loss, and Other Four-Letter Words, Michael Ausiello

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H – Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet, Jamie Ford

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O – One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Ken Kesey

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Image Credit: Wikipedia

T – Turtles All The Way Down, John Green

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Image Credit: Wikipedia

H – High Crimes, Joseph Finder

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E – Emergency Contact, Mary H.K. Choi

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Image Credit: Simon & Schuster

A – American Heiress: The Wild Saga of the Kidnapping, Crimes, and Trial of Patty Hearst, Jeffrey Toobin

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Image Credit: Goodreads

D – Dear Heartbreak: YA Authors and Teens on the Dark Side of Love, Heather Demetrios, et. al.

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Image Credit: Goodreads

L – Long Way Down, Jason Reynolds

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I – I’ll Be Gone in the Dark: One Woman’s Obsessive Search for the Golden State Killer, Michelle McNamara

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N – North and South, Elizabeth Gaskell

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Image Credit: Goodreads

E – Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, Matthew Desmond

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S – Sleeping Beauties, Stephen King and Owen King

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That’s all for this tag! I loved researching the books, and particularly the covers. Sometimes, the covers of books make a big difference!

What about you? What books would you pick for spelling out your blog’s name? Let me know in the comments!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Blog Awards #19: The Sunshine Blogger Award – Number Four!

The Sunshine Blogger Award

I was honored to be nominated for this award by the lovely Kristian, who blogs at Life Lessons Around The Dinner Table. She’s a really fun person who loves to read and write! If you haven’t, go check her out! Her recent fiction is so much fun to read! I’m also honored to call her a dear friend. Thank you!!

Here’s the link to the original post where I was nominated:


The Rules:

  1. Thank the blogger who nominated you.
  2. Use the “Sunshine Blogger Award” logo on your post.
  3. Answer the 11 questions the selector asks of you.
  4. Nominate 5-11 bloggers you want to give the award to.
  5. Ask the following bloggers that you selected 11 questions of your own.

My Questions from Kristian:

  1.  What do you think are the 5 most beautiful things in the world? Why?
  2. What impression do you think you give when you first meet someone?
  3. What one responsibility do you most wish you didn’t have?
  4. What is your favorite subject to write about?
  5. What would constitute a perfect day for you?
  6. For what in your life do you feel most grateful?
  7. What fictional place would you most like to visit?
  8. Who do you admire most? Why?
  9. Is there a book that had an impact on your life? If so, what was it?
  10. Where is the most interesting place you’ve visited?
  11. If you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go?

My Answers:

  1. Only five? You’re breaking my heart! Okay, here’s my list: (1) Lighthouses, (2) Rainbows, (3) The night sky, filled with stars, (4) Snow-capped mountains, (5) Animals in their natural habitats / environments.
  2. Energetic, enthusiastic, chatterbox, and wanting to know everything about you.
  3. Good question! I’m not super fond of cleaning my house, so I’d love to have a maid service!
  4. I love writing about people overcoming obstacles, with a little bit of romance mixed in.
  5. A perfect day would be waking up either at the beach or in the woods, hot coffee, reading, writing in my notebook, good food, spending time with my husband, exploring a new place or places, and stargazing. I want to use my camera, but be an unplugged as possible throughout the day. Less technology is better sometimes!
  6. I’m so grateful that I’m alive on this Earth. I was born at 25 weeks, and was given a 50/50 shot at survival!
  7. I would love to visit Hogwarts!
  8. I admire J.K. Rowling so much. Her story is incredible!
  9. Several books have impacted my life. However, I think the one that has had the biggest impact was To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. It was assigned reading in ninth grade, and it’s one book that I re-read every year. It changed my perspective and world view.
  10. I think Moscow has been the most interesting place I’ve had the opportunity to visit. I was able to travel there for a week in January 2001. It was freezing cold, but completely worth it! I gained a greater appreciation for living in the United States, and how much Russia has gone through in the last 100-150 years.
  11. I would head for Ireland! There’s so much to do and see!

My Nominees:

As others have say, you are under no obligation to accept this award. It’s all in good fun. But, if you choose to do so, thanks!


My Questions to the Nominees:

  1. What is your favorite season, and why?
  2. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you go?
  3. You’re offered $100,000 a year to pick your dream job. What would you pick?
  4. What is the first movie you remember watching?
  5. What is your favorite color?
  6. Who is your hero / heroine?
  7. Why did you start blogging?
  8. Do you enjoy traveling?
  9. Aside from blogging, what are three of your favorite hobbies / interests?
  10. If you had the opportunity to meet someone famous, who would you want to meet?
  11. What is your favorite non-American food?

Thanks so much for the lovely award, Kristian!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Commentary #76: “A Seasoned Author’s Tips On Handling Criticism!” (Reblogged)

Didi Oviatt is a published author, but also an awesome blogger. I wanted to share her recent post about handling criticism.

I really liked Didi’s analogy. So much so, that I bookmarked the post to save it for future reference.

Criticism is tough. I’m pretty sure many of us have been there a time or two, as bloggers, writers, and just putting ourselves out there. It’s the nature of what we do. But, Didi put this tough topic in the context of cooking and recipes, and it’s a wonderful way to think about it.

Thank you, Didi! You are one of many people who continue to inspire me.

Criticism Quote

Image Credit: BrainyQuote


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Didi Oviatt

Sometimes I think of reviews and critique, be it negative or positive, as being suggestive ingredients of sorts for my next creation. Like my writing/books is actually a four course meal. I’ve shopped, prepped, marinated, mixed, chopped, fried, blended, and baked until I’m utterly exhausted. I feel like the food is as perfect as I can possibly get it and it’s time to be served.

The guests show up, ready to devour my masterpiece (or read the book per say), and here I am pacing the floors from the sidelines. I watch as some people slowly pick at it before actually giving it a taste. Some people dive right in without second thought. They’ll eat as much food as possible, as quickly as they can, until they’re ready to pop. Some let each bite swirl around in their mouths slavering the flavor.

And in the end, EVERYONE has something to…

View original post 1,023 more words

Awesome Authors #16: Chris Van Allsburg

Chris Van Allsburg

Image Credit: Quotefancy

Chris Van Allsburg was practically a household name when I was younger. He has created some of the most beautifully illustrated books I have ever seen. Our future kids will definitely know about him, too.

Born in East Grand Rapids, Michigan, in June 1949. Van Allsburg has an older sister. His parents moved a few times between East Grand Rapids and Grand Rapids. After graduation, he attended the College of Architecture and Design at the University of Michigan, where the art school was located at the time. After graduating in 1972, he went on to the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), where he obtained a master’s degree in sculpture in 1975. He opened a studio. Struggling with time in the studio, he started to sketch his ideas and designs at home. His wife thought his drawings would be good for children’s books. His first book, The Garden of Abdul Gasazi, was published in 1979.

He resides in Providence, Rhode Island, with his wife, Lisa. They have two daughters, Sophia and Anna. Van Allsburg converted to Judaism, which is Lisa’s faith.

He has received several awards, including two Caldecott Medals for U.S. picture book illustration. He was the 1986 U.S. nominee for the biennial, international Hans Christain Andersen Award, the highest international recognition for those who create children’s books. In April 2012, he was awarded an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from his alma mater, the University of Michigan.


The Polar Express (1985)

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Image Credit: Wikipedia

My parents have had a copy of this book since before I was born. It was a Christmas tradition for years to read the book and/or listen to the story on cassette tape. We even had a collector’s set with the book, cassette tape, and a silver bell. If you haven’t read it, you should.

Also, the movie adaptation (2004) is wonderful. We went to see it in theaters, likely the weekend it was released. We love Josh Groban in our house, so we also got the soundtrack and DVD. It’s a thing.

Jumanji (1981)

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Image Credit: Wikipedia

I’m pretty sure I first read this book through either the Chittum Elementary School library, or the Russell Memorial Library. I remember the Reading Rainbow episode, too.

Like The Polar Express, the movie adaptation (1995) is awesome, with Robin Williams and a cast of characters. I think I saw it on TV first. It’s one of my favorite movies that will never get old. We also saw the sequel (2017) in theaters, and it was pretty good, too. We miss you, Robin. There was also a TV series that ran from 1996 to 1999.

The Wreck of the Zephyr (1983)

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Image Credit: Wikipedia

This is one book that I hadn’t heard of! I need to see if the local library has it.

Zathura (2002)

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Image Credit: Wikipedia

This is one instance where I saw the movie adaptation (2005) before I read the book. It’s always fun to think about and dream about space. We actually watched the movie again recently – It’s really well-done. Plus, it’s fun to see several actors when they first got their start in the film industry.


What about you? Have you read or seen any of Chris Van Allsburg’s work?


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Tag #60: Ultimate Book Tag

The Ultimate Book Tag

Image Credit: Found on Fiction No Chaser

Fiction No Chaser is awesome! I stumbled upon Teagan and Jess’s blog a while back, and I’m loving their book reviews. Check them out!

Here’s the link to their post:


The Questions

Do you get sick while reading in the car?

  • Nope. While I’m not driving, I love reading on road trips!

Which author’s writing style is completely unique to you and why?

  • I was hooked by Sharon M. Draper from the beginning. She has this way of making predominantly African-American and people of color characters jump off the page. I’ve read nearly everything that’s she published.

Harry Potter Series or the Twilight Saga? Give 3 points to defend your answer.

  • Harry Potter wins. Every. Single. Time.
  • Point #1: Harry Potter was the first series that got me remotely interested in the fantasy genre.
  • Point #2: Twilight is not my thing. I tried. But, I’ve read, devoured every single page of Harry Potter.
  • Point #3: I donated my Twilight books long ago. I will never donate my Harry Potter collection.

Do you carry a book bag? If so, what’s in it (besides books …)?

  • My current Vera Bradley purse is big enough to carry a book, so that works. That’s one of my main policies for purses / bags – At least one book has to fit in it.

Do you smell your books?

  • I have. But, I don’t make a habit of it.

Books with or without little illustrations?

  • I love illustrations. That’s one thing I didn’t like when American Girl launched their BeForever series in 2014. The style of the books changed so that they became solid chapter books, and lost the beautiful illustrations that captivated the imagination. I will keep the older, six series books for myself and my future children because the illustrations are timeless.

What book did you love while reading but discovered later it wasn’t quality writing?

Do you have any funny stories involving books from your childhood?

  • We almost had to pay a $25 fine for the local library to replace a beautifully illustrated, hardcover children’s book. Right before the deadline to pay, we finally found the book. It was under my parents’ bed. I have no idea why I thought it was a good idea to put it there. From then on, library books were restricted to my bedroom, or in a bag in the car.

What is the thinnest book on your shelf?

  • Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, by Dr. Seuss. It was a graduation gift with a beautiful inscription.

What is the thickest book on your shelf?

  • 11/22/63, by Stephen King.

Do you write as well as read? Do you see yourself in the future as being an author?

  • I’ve been writing in journals and creating stories since I was 8-years-old. I decided that I wanted to be a writer when I was 10. I’m getting closer to that goal every day – My goal is to finish my current WIP for the first round of editing by December 31, 2018. I want to reach at least 50,000 words.

When did you get into reading?

  • Probably in the womb. My parents and grandparents read to me constantly.

What is your favorite classic book?

In school what was your best subject?

  • English was my absolute favorite. I didn’t always like the books that were assigned, but I certainly gained a greater appreciation for literature over the years. The lively discussions we had in my high school classes are some of my fondest memories.

If you were given a book as a present that you had read before and hated…what would you do?

  • Say thank you, and accept it.

What is a lesser known series that you know of that is similar to Harry Potter or The Hunger Games?

  • I can’t answer this question. I don’t know of one!

What is a bad habit that you always do (besides rambling) while filming?

  • I don’t do many videos, but I struggle with what to do with my hands. I talk with my hands, so gesturing is something where I have control issues.

What is your favorite word?

  • Awesome.

Are you a nerd, dork, or dweeb?

  • Likely all of the above, but nerd shines brightly.

Vampires or Fairies? Why?

  • Fairies. I love Tinkerbell! And vampires have never been my thing.

Shapeshifters or Angels?

  • Ooooh. I like both, but angels win for me. I rely on my faith quite a bit.

Spirits or Werewolves?

  • Spirits – Such as, A Christmas Carol.

Zombies or Vampires?

  • Given the choice, I’d go with vampires. Zombies are gross, and I would very likely get eaten, or turned into one within minutes. Yuck!

Love Triangle or Forbidden Love?

  • Forbidden love, hands down. I don’t even want to write love triangles in my works, let alone read them.

AND FINALLY: Full on romance books or action-packed with a few love scenes mixed in?

  • Both. Mixing action and romance is never bad.

Tag – You’re It!


This was an awesome tag! Really interesting questions!

What would your answers be?


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Commentary #75: “The war on drugs failed. It’s time for a war on abuse.”

Honor Blackman

Image Credit: AZ Quotes

The headline grabbed me instantly. It spoke to me.

Here’s the link to the opinion that CNN published on their website on Friday, June 15, 2018:


Full disclosure: This was published under CNN’s Opinion section.

CNN also published this Editor’s Note at the top of the page: Natalie Schreyer is a reporter at the Fuller Project for International Reporting, a nonprofit news organization that covers issues impacting women and girls globally. She is working on “Abused in America,” a Fuller Project initiative to cover domestic violence in the United States. Jessica Klein is a journalist and co-author of the book “Abetting Batterers: What Police, Prosecutors, and Courts Aren’t Doing to Protect America’s Women.” The views expressed here are solely those of the authors.


I read this opinion. And then I re-read it. It stuck with me all weekend long. It’s still with me as I finish writing this post.

The comparisons that Schreyer and Klein make are staggering. After reading it several times, it makes complete sense to me.

Sure, I’m definitely biased here. I am a domestic violence survivor. I am an abuse survivor. Neither of these are ever okay. I’ve read several powerful memoirs and accounts of survivors (Tornado Warning), and stories of those who tragically lost their lives (If I Am Missing Or Dead: A Sister’s Story of Love, Murder, and Liberation) over the years. I don’t want to read new ones, if I’m being perfectly honest.

There must be harsher punishments for habitual offenders. The opening story for this opinion both broke my heart and made my blood boil – An alleged abuser has never been convicted of a crime, despite 160 encounters with police in 15 years. Quick math – That’s an average of 11 encounters per year. That’s too many.

One encounter is too many.

It took way too long for the current stalking laws to be enacted, and even now, those laws aren’t necessarily the same in every one of the 50 states (although it absolutely should be). The problem here is there’s a lack of consistency. The power is usually left up to the states, and that’s where many problems lie. Where you live is a huge factor, and it absolutely shouldn’t be that way!

But, what about all these non-violent offenders, in prison for decades on drug charges?

I could write a proverbial book. What the Nixon administration started in 1971 was a so-called “war” that will never be won. Presidents Reagan and H.W. Bush kept fueling the fire. I myself was in the D.A.R.E. program in fifth grade. I vowed to never smoke cigarettes after watching my grandmother, my dad’s mom. She lived with emphysema for more than 20 years. She also had COPD, and was on oxygen since I was a child.

Now, in 2018, our country has been facing the “opioid crisis” for several years. Like the authors argue, “addicts who need medical treatment more than criminal punishment,” is so true. And, sadly, not likely to happen. There is a lack of investment in mental health treatment and addiction treatment. Addicts need resources such as medical intervention, quality treatment facilities, quality therapy and/or counseling, and continued support for as long as necessary to keep them sober, stable, and functional.

Why? We have more people in prison for drug possession than mental health treatment facilities. These men and women (not all, mind you), unfortunately, re-offend and get sent back to prison because they can’t get a good, steady job after being released. Struggling to support themselves and their families, they turn to what they’ve known as their source of income. And they’re stuck in this vicious cycle that doesn’t seem to end.

When I think of an “addict,” I think of someone involved with drugs such as heroin, methamphetamine, or crack. The harder, more dangerous drugs.

To think of how many people (many are people of color, too) are in jail or prison for non-violent marijuana offenses makes me incredibly angry. I’ve been supportive of the interest to legalize / de-criminalize marijuana. But, that’s another story altogether.

There needs to be far more accountability on the domestic violence and abuser side, however. The authors pointed to a fascinating report from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, which focused on High Point, North Carolina. When the focus was shifted toward cracking down on intimate partner violence, the number of intimate partner murders dropped from 17 (between 2004-2011) to just one (between 2012-2014).

Numbers are powerful. Seventeen murders dropped to one? Wow.

As I mentioned earlier, the current stalking laws took way too long to pass. Now, there really should be domestic violence courts in every state. The script should be flipped – Turn the thousands of drug courts (3,100 quoted in the opinion) into domestic violence courts. Problem solved? Maybe.

I’m not saying to get rid of drug courts altogether. What I’m saying is to shift the balance. Shift the balance of the number of courts, and maybe that will also shift the balance of power.

I certainly don’t have all the answers. I just feel strongly about the issues presented in this opinion. I hope more is done for all victims of domestic violence and abuse. No one deserves to go through the horror, shame, and terror. And this includes women, men, and children. There’s a lot of focus on women, but men and children are abused and violated every single day.


For more information, check out these resources. Many of these were also cited in the opinion.


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Writing Adventures #2: Discovering Evernote

Evernote

Image Credit: Evernote

Welcome back! Thanks to everyone who read my first post in this new Writing Adventures series that I’ve started. I really appreciate all the support and encouragement, so far!

Here’s the link to my previous post:


Today’s post is about a new tool that I’ve learned about, called Evernote. I was intrigued from the very beginning, and I wanted to try it out and see how it worked.

I first learned about Evernote from my friend, Madison (Madi) Grace.

Here’s the link to her post:


I love their motto / tagline:

Get organized. Work smarter. Remember everything.

Yes, please! I love it!

I took some time on Saturday, June 16th (yes, the same day this post was published!) to sign up for Evernote and start playing with it. About 10 minutes in, I love it. I really do. This is a game-changer for me.

My first notebook has the tentative title of my WIP, “Experiences From Camp.”

I’ll load my chapters in from Microsoft Word slowly, piece by piece, but for now I just wrote myself some reminders, and where I started with this whole thing!

Here’s what my notebook looks like right now:

“Experiences From Camp”

  • I started this during NaNoWriMo 2012, which was my first-ever NaNoWriMo. I wrote around 10,000 words by the end of that month.
  • In March, I signed up for Camp NaNoWriMo for the very first time, thanks to Madi’s encouragement.
  • During Camp NaNoWriMo April 2018, I exceeded my goal and won Camp! My goal was 20,000 new words. On April 30th, I surpassed my goal with approximately 20,256 new words! Yippee!
  • June 2018 monthly goal: Write 1,000 new words.
  • Sign up for Camp NaNoWriMo July 2018 before the end of the month.
  • Set my Camp NaNoWriMo goal before the end of the month.
  • Current word count: 34,130 words.

I also plan on using Evernote’s handy Note templates for creative writing projects.

I’m excited to keep playing around with Evernote. I love it already. Thanks again, Madi, for your awesome post!

Come back in about a month for the next Writing Adventures post!


What about you?

Have you used Evernote?

Are you writing anything special?


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂