Getting Personal #177: Camp NaNoWriMo July 2019 Recap

Camp NaNoWriMo April 2019

Image Credit: Camp NaNoWriMo

This was my fourth Camp NaNoWriMo session!


I wanted to give my 2014 WIP, tentatively titled “Discussion of Differences,” some attention this round. It was a bit painful, recognizing the influences that one of my ex-friends had on this particular work. However, I pushed through the pain and awkwardness, and made decent progress!

Goal: Write 20,000 new words.


Here’s the synopsis I put together:

Online conversations can inspire great change. Six friends, almost on a whim, decide to leave everything behind and head to Europe. But, will they come to regret this snap decision? Travel along with Bethany, Hunter, and their friends, as they discover more about themselves, each other, and the facts of life.


Original word count: 16,237 words (48 pages)

Day 1

Today: 7
Total: 7

This was strictly reading through my original 48 pages and getting reacquainted with the work.

Day 2

Today: 346
Total: 353

Day 3

Today: 159
Total: 512

Days 4-14

All zeroes
Total: 512

Day 15

Today: 300
Total: 812

The slump was finally broken!

Days 16-17

All zeroes
Total: 812

Day 18

Today: 731
Total: 1,543

Day 19

Today: 468
Total: 2,011

Day 20

Today: 409
Total: 2,420

Day 21

Today: 570
Total: 2,990

Day 22

Today: 0
Total: 2,990

Day 23

Today: 926
Total: 3,916

Day 24

Today: 597
Total: 4,513

Days 25-31

All zeroes
Total: 4,513


Final Thoughts

I was very pleased to add more than 4,500 words to this WIP! I fell short of my goal, but it was a combination of pushing through the pain of the influences of this work, and pure exhaustion with real life. However, I feel like the story is progressing in a good direction!

I’m excited to work on something brand-new for NaNoWriMo in November!

Current word count: 20,780 words


Have you done NaNoWriMo in November before?

Have you done Camp NaNoWriMo before?

Let me know what you think!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #176: August Goals

August Goals - transforminglifenow

Image Credit: transforminglifenow

Welcome back! August is my birthday month. Every year, it seems like August is far away when the year begins. But, then, it always sneaks up on me! And it seems to go by faster than the other months. I guess time really does fly by when you’re having fun!

Here are my goals for the month of August:

  1. Donate blood.
  2. Celebrate my birthday!
  3. Celebrate others’ birthdays!
  4. Read at least two books.
  5. Complete at least two Writing Prompt posts.
  6. Plan a fun Writing Prompt series for the month of September.
  7. Catch up on Commentary and Tags posts.
  8. Research You Need A Budget! (YNAB).
  9. Read my Daily Guideposts book every day.
  10. Dedicate at least an hour every weekend to working on my office.
  11. Participate in my church’s clean-up day.

What about you? Do you have any goals for the month of August?


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Commentary #93: Thoughts on “A Girl Like Her”

A Girl Like Her

Image Credit: Wikipedia

Thanks to my friend Hannah for posting the trailer on Facebook recently. I hadn’t heard of this movie until I watched the trailer. I cried.

I finally sat down and watched it last night. What a powerful, emotional movie.


The tag line reads, in part, “based on a million true stories,” and that’s so true.

Although it’s been a few years since it was released, it’s still so sadly relevant.

As I started watching, I immediately thought of a young man named Alex, who died by suicide when he was a freshman at Oscar Smith. He was 14-years-old. He had just started the IB program. I didn’t know him at all, but I felt compelled to go to his funeral. I didn’t know his story, but I wanted to be there for his family, and the IB family.

As the movie progressed, I thought about the other people I knew who have died by suicide. Not necessarily from bullying, but other circumstances. The most poignant bullying tragedy was Nick L’Hoste. He was only 12 when he died. It sent shockwaves through our schools, and especially our church. He was only a year younger than me. It’s hard to believe he would have turned 30 this year.


This movie makes me incredibly grateful I didn’t have the access to the far reaches of the Internet when I was in high school. But, it’s still sobering. Bullying has expanded to online and offline, and it’s so sad.

The other lesson I learned is that no one should be afraid to ask for help, whether you’re the victim or the bully. It’s a bit of a contradiction, so let me explain.

When I was younger, I was taunted and teased. I wasn’t classically “bullied.” I never considered suicide as an option or a way out.

However, when I brought up instances on the school bus and in the classroom, my parents typically said, “Oh, if it’s a boy, it’s just because he likes you.” I’ve NEVER liked that phrase, nor did I believe it was true. I’m writing another blog post about that – More to come.

But that’s not my point. Kids, regardless of their age, should be able to go to their parents, or any trusted adult, with their problems and struggles. They shouldn’t be dismissed or brushed off. They need to be believed.

Also, if they don’t want to talk about it right away, that’s perfectly fine. They need to feel like they’re being heard, and that’s huge!

And, the bullies need as much help as the victims. I’m glad the movie showed both perspectives. By the end of the movie, it was painfully obvious how much Avery was dealing with, and she felt like she had no one to turn to.

I appreciate what the principal said about there being two sides to every story. That’s absolutely true.

However, bullying is still incredibly complicated! Jessica was targeted in multiple ways – In person, physical abuse, text messages, emails, social media posts, and more. It gutted me to watch it all unfold.

I cried multiple times. I wasn’t particularly thrilled with the ending, but I understand why it was framed that way. The point is the movie as a whole, not necessarily how it ends.


I applaud Amy S. Weber for making this movie. I think many more people need to see it. I was able to find it on Amazon Prime Video for free. And I will likely watch it again. It’s a good reminder to be kind, and recognize that you probably have no idea what someone is going through.

So, thank you, Hannah. You introduced me to a movie that’s left a mark on me. Thank you for inspiring me to share it.


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #175: July Goals Recap

July was crazy!

Here’s the link to my July Goals post:

Ready?

Here we go!


  1. Participate in Camp NaNoWriMo, July 2019. — Accomplished!
  2. Catch up on maintenance / gas logs for both cars. — Did not accomplish.
  3. Do another round of closet clean-out. — Did not accomplish.
  4. See Spider-Man: Far From Home. — Accomplished!
  5. Watch Stranger Things, Season 3. — Accomplished!
  6. Finish cleaning the attached garage. — Did not accomplish.
  7. Work on my office, making sure everything from the garage has a proper place. — Did not accomplish.
  8. Read every night before bed. — Did not accomplish.
  9. Celebrate the 4th! — Accomplished!
  10. Spend quality time with family and friends. — Accomplished!

July was a bit of a weird month. Spurts of productivity, and then a lot of exhaustion. Many nights, I came home from work and didn’t want to look at any screens. Especially the computer!

We loved Spider-Man: Far From Home. I highly recommend seeing it in the theater.

We binged all of Stranger Things, Season 3, between July 4th and 5th. The next week, we started watching it again. It’s spectacular. If you haven’t seen this show, get on Netflix and watch it!

For July 4th, we celebrated the holiday and Kyle’s birthday at their house. Michaela, Kyle’s girlfriend, has been a life-long friend of mine. We hadn’t been to their house before, so it was really nice to go, bring chocolate mousse, hang out, and enjoy others’ company. Kyle’s surprise 30th birthday celebration was fun also.

We also went to the farm to see Al’s parents the following weekend. It was so nice to get away, and much needed for both of us. It was hot! But, the dogs did so much than last time. I think they finally understand that the farm is a “second home” for us, and them. I also read well over 100 pages of my current book. I’m almost done!

This round of Camp NaNoWriMo wasn’t as successful, but still a success. I still wrote, and made progress with my 2014 WIP. I’m going to post a recap in the next few days, so be on the lookout for that.

I have a lot to catch up on for the month of August!


Did you have any goals for the month of July? Let me know!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #173: July Goals

July

Image Credit: Facebook

Hello, July! It’s hot and humid here in Virginia. Summer just started, and it’s already reaching the mid-90s during the day.

Here are my goals for the month of July:

  1. Participate in Camp NaNoWriMo, July 2019.
  2. Catch up on maintenance / gas logs for both cars.
  3. Do another round of closet clean-out.
  4. See Spider-Man: Far From Home.
  5. Watch Stranger Things, Season 3.
  6. Finish cleaning the attached garage.
  7. Work on my office, making sure everything from the garage has a proper place.
  8. Read every night before bed.
  9. Celebrate the 4th!
  10. Spend quality time with family and friends.

What about you? Do you have any goals for the month of July?


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #172: June Goals Recap

BeautyBeyondBones 2

Image Credit: Beauty Beyond Bones

June felt like a bit of a marathon. Oh well. It was a good month!

Here’s the link to my June Goals post:

Ready?

Here we go!


  1. See Dark Phoenix. — Accomplished!
  2. Test out the “natural” weed killer recipe. — Accomplished!
  3. Plant mosquito-repelling plants in our front flower beds. — Did not accomplish.
  4. Work on tidying up both garages with Al. — Accomplished!
  5. Catch up on maintenance / gas logs for both cars. — Did not accomplish.
  6. Do another round of closet clean-out. — Did not accomplish.
  7. Decide what to work on for Camp NaNoWriMo July 2019. — Accomplished!
  8. Catch up on tags and participation blog posts. — Accomplished!
  9. Spend more time reading. — Did not accomplish.
  10. Spend more time with my journal. — Semi-Achieved.
  11. Find at least one new recipe to make. — Accomplished!

Al and I went to see Dark Phoenix the weekend it opened. It was pretty decent, but we both have similar opinions about the X-Men movie franchise. The cast was great!

The “natural” weed killer recipe is three ingredients: Vinegar, Epsom salt, and blue Dawn dishwashing detergent. It worked pretty well. We definitely have some stubborn weeds, though, so it may take multiple applications!

We made HUGE progress with both garages this month! I’m so excited. Al single-handedly worked on the detached garage, and we were able to park his Mustang in it last weekend! Happy dance. We took several hours yesterday to tackle the attached garage together, and it looks like a different space already. We still have some work to do, but we filled up my car with thrift store donations, and we have so much less stuff to deal with going forward. We’re hoping, by some time in July, to park one of the other cars in it!

I can’t believe it’s already time for Camp NaNoWriMo, July 2019! I really enjoy the structure of it, and I look forward to meeting everyone in my “cabin.”

I’m working diligently to write in my journal every day. I’m taking a page from my Gratitude Challenge blog posts and trying to capture my gratitude list daily.

The recipe I chose knocked it out of the park! I was looking for something different to make in our Crock-Pot, and I stumbled upon Easy Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas. It’s only four ingredients, and it’s simply set it and forget it!


Did you have any goals for the month of June? Let me know!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #170: June Goals

img_1946

Photo from Coral Gables, Florida. Found on Facebook.

I’ve been doing a double-take when I look at a calendar. It’s June. We’re basically halfway through 2019 now. It feels crazy!

Here are my goals for the month of June:

  1. See Dark Phoenix.
  2. Test out the “natural” weed killer recipe.
  3. Plant mosquito-repelling plants in our front flower beds.
  4. Work on tidying up both garages with Al.
  5. Catch up on maintenance / gas logs for both cars.
  6. Do another round of closet clean-out.
  7. Decide what to work on for Camp NaNoWriMo July 2019.
  8. Catch up on tags and participation blog posts.
  9. Spend more time reading.
  10. Spend more time with my journal.
  11. Find at least one new recipe to make.

Do you have any goals for the month of June? Let me know in the comments!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂