Commentary #55: A Must-See, Incredibly Powerful Message from Beautiful Seventh Grader’s Slam Poem

Slam Poetry

Image Credit: The Odyssey Online

I found the video below on Facebook recently, and it spoke volumes to me:

Background: At the end of this past school year (The video was posted on Facebook on May 25th), this beautiful 7th grade girl at Queen Creek Middle School delivered this incredibly powerful slam poem. This was part of the end of her 7th grade writing class.

Caption from 12 News: “When a 7th grade writing class at Queen Creek Middle School presented poems for their end of year assignment, one student stood out with a powerful message.”

It’s been viewed over 33 MILLION times.

According to the public comments, this beautiful young lady is named Olivia.

Her teacher publicly commented on the video. His name is Brett Cornelius. He was the one recording Olivia’s performance, and obtained her parents’ permission before sharing it.

“She presented this for almost every single 7th grader. They were moved to tears, as was I. She’s brilliant beyond words, and this poem is just the icing on top of her perfectly cooked cake. What’s even more incredible is that she worked on this for over a month, truly digging into the raw depths of teenage hood and expressing her feelings of the good, the bad, and the ugly of walking the halls of the school as a young woman. She’s humble and honest, that’s for sure. I’m proud to have met this little lady!”

“I am her teacher and that assignment was one I went back and forth about assigning for weeks. Obviously, there are no regrets. She transferred to our school, so unfortunately I was not prone to her incredible educational aptitude, but we worked tirelessly to give her creative outlets to express herself. Her parents advocated for her the entire way, too. She’s a blessed child, that is for sure. Thank you!”

It’s hard to hear some of her words, but her message is profound.

I think I’ve watched this video at least a dozen times since I shared it to my own Facebook timeline on Friday, July 21st. And, every time, it’s given me chills and brought tears to my eyes.

This doesn’t apply to just middle school, or just 7th graders, or just girls.

Yes, Olivia directly addresses middle school girls, but her message is more powerful and more far-reaching than that.

I saw myself in Olivia’s words. I saw myself in Olivia’s voice. I saw myself as Olivia struggled to hold back her emotion. I saw the tears in her eyes, as I felt tears in mine.

I saw myself in middle school – Glasses, braces, acne. Experimenting with makeup, but not allowed to wear much of it. Trying to be my own person, but also wanting to fit in.

I saw myself in high school – Exchanging my glasses for contact lenses. No more braces. Wearing makeup a bit more often, but not too much. Trying to keep up with the rigors of IB, while not showboating to the kids in orchestra and gym who were the regular kids.

I saw myself in college – Finally, freedom! But, with that freedom, I also endured a four-year-long abusive relationship. When I finally saw the light at the end of my junior year, I saw a shell of myself. I was broken. My confidence had vanished, although I’m sure I was still super enthusiastic on the outside. Deep down, I knew I needed to leave, to escape, but I was also terrified that no one else would love me, no one else would want me.

I even saw myself now, in the present day – I struggle with body image. I struggle with the fact that I’ve gained 25+ pounds since graduating from college six years ago. I’m getting better with my eating habits, and I drink far less soda than I used to. I drink at least 75 ounces of water every day, if not a little bit more. I only consume alcohol sparingly now (The good stuff is expensive, haha!) I know that my day job is a major contributor – I’m behind a desk eight hours a day. I wear makeup almost every day, but I don’t feel like a clown. I feel grown-up and professional.

But, I’m also a human being. I have feelings. And it’s okay to have these feelings.

The point I’m trying to get at is Olivia’s message is important for EVERYONE to hear. Maybe that’s why it’s been watched over 33 million times. What this amazing young woman wrote and performed (by memory, no less) is a reminder to everyone that we hide behind our true selves.

For me, personally, I don’t want to be so afraid. I don’t want to be so scared of or disgusted by my body image. I want to embrace it, as best that I can, at least. I want to continue to be confident. I don’t want to fake it until I make it as much anymore. I want to be as genuine as possible.

Can I do that? I know I can.

Olivia, you’ve certainly inspired this 29-year-old. Let’s do this. Thank you!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #78: August Goals

We have arrived at the peak of summer. It’s my birthday month! But, I’m also excited because we’re in the home stretch, headed toward fall. Yay!

Here are my goals for the month of August:

  1. Register for the fall semester.
  2. Donate blood.
  3. Clear out the clothing clutter, once and for all.
  4. Celebrate my birthday!
  5. See The Dark Tower.
  6. Write at least 300 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo attempt.
  7. Move my bookcase from my parents’ house to ours.
  8. Update my resume and LinkedIn profile.
  9. Make a series of home improvement blog posts.
  10. Make the Succulent Sphere craft for Savy.

Here’s the breakdown:

Register for the fall semester.

  • This is happening on Friday! I’m absolutely determined to make this happen!

Donate blood.

  • Blood drive #101 is on Saturday!

Clear out the clothing clutter, once and for all.

  • My thredUP donation bag is scheduled to arrive this week!
  • I’m so excited to finally clean out! Our closets need it!

Celebrate my birthday!

  • I’m excited to take the day off from work and thoroughly enjoy it.
  • I’m making my regular pilgrimage to LUSH Handmade Cosmetics and Barnes & Noble, plus meeting Al and his co-workers for lunch!
  • My parents are taking us out to eat sometime this coming weekend – Spaghetti Eddie’s!
  • Al’s parents are supposed to stay with us during the second weekend of August, so hopefully we can get our parents together then, too.

See The Dark Tower.

  • Al is more excited for this movie than I am (Stephen King’s epic book series), but I’m intrigued!
  • Plus, who can resist Idris Elba?

Write at least 300 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo attempt.

  • I felt so good at the end of July – I just want to keep going!
  • Making time for it makes such a big difference.

Move my bookcase from my parents’ house to ours.

  • This will be a significant step in making my office complete!

Update my resume and LinkedIn profile.

  • Piggybacking off of last month, this is something that I desperately need to do. Five years is way too long!

Make a series of home improvement blog posts.

  • This is long overdue, so be prepared for lots of Before & After photos!

Make the Succulent Sphere craft for Savy.

  • Link coming soon!
  • Savy saw this video when I shared it on Facebook and tagged her, and I’ve offered to make it for her!

Do you have any goals for the month of August?

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #77: July Goals Recap

July felt like one of the longest months to me, but I think that’s because of two weeks of suffering through AC issues (Now gloriously fixed!), and we didn’t have many plans during the weekends. However, the end of the month always seems to sneak up on me!

Here’s the link to my July Goals post:


Here we go!

  1. Clear the clothing clutter. — Semi-Achieved.
  2. Start designing my custom American Girl doll cabinet / storage unit. — Semi-Achieved.
  3. Register for the fall semester. — Did not accomplish.
  4. See Spider-Man: Homecoming. — Accomplished!
  5. See Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. — Accomplished!
  6. Write at least 200 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo attempt. — Accomplished!
  7. Work toward weekly meal planning. — Accomplished!
  8. Set up a consistent cleaning schedule. — Accomplished!
  9. Update my resume. — Semi-Achieved.
  10. Publish a bigger variety of blog posts. — Accomplished!

Here’s the breakdown:

Clear the clothing clutter. — Semi-Achieved.

  • I got it a bit more organized and clearly divided.
  • I tried everything on, just to be absolutely sure!
  • This past week, I just ordered a Donation Bag through thredUP – I love that what I put into this bag, when it arrives, (including Al’s stuff!) will help our local Big Brothers Big Sisters Foundation! There are three local charities that we can choose from, at any time.

Start designing my custom American Girl doll cabinet / storage unit. — Semi-Achieved.

  • We took measurements of a standard American Girl doll box.
  • Al is starting to work it up on the computer, using Adobe Illustrator.

Register for the fall semester. — Did not accomplish.

  • This is happening, just later this week!
  • I called the academic advising department two weeks ago – They don’t make appointments, they only take walk-ins (Of course they do).
  • I’m prepared to sit on campus all day on Friday until this happens. I’m tired of waiting!

See Spider-Man: Homecoming. — Accomplished!

  • We saw this on Thursday, July 6th! It was a later showing, and we were both really tired on Friday at work, but it was COMPLETELY WORTH IT.
  • It’s one of the best movies with Spider-Man, in our opinion.
  • It’s a movie that I think would make John Hughes proud.
  • If you haven’t seen it, we both highly recommend it!

See Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets. — Accomplished!

  • We saw this last weekend – A Sunday matinee.
  • It was good, overall – Not anything spectacular.
  • The CGI was stunning and mind-blowing.
  • The story – Not so much.
  • We’re both a little sad that it flopped at the box office.

Write at least 200 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo attempt. — Accomplished!

  • Drumroll … I wrote approximately 452 words!
  • I feel awesome. I’m hoping to keep this momentum going!
  • Current word count: 10,662 words.

Work toward weekly meal planning. — Accomplished!

  • We sat down and mapped out the month of July. We basically picked one meal per week, and then I adjusted the recipes I had accordingly.
  • One of our favorite recipes now is Creamy Parmesan Garlic Mushroom Chicken.
  • The first time I made it, I followed the recipe step-by-step. It was really good!
  • When I made it again this week (Monday), I grilled the chicken on our George Foreman grill after marinating it for over 24 hours with olive oil, water, salt, and pepper. Instead of spinach, I used a whole head of broccoli. Absolutely delicious! I made enough for us to have ample portions for five nights.
  • This week – Taco salad!

Set up a consistent cleaning schedule. — Accomplished!

  • I took a pen to our Chick-fil-A calendar in our kitchen, and basically alternated Kitchen, Bathrooms, and Floors on every weekend. I wrote it down for every Saturday, but I give myself all weekend to make sure whatever it is gets done.
  • I’ve also noticed that I now feel less stressed because I’ve broken it down in this way!

Update my resume. — Semi-Achieved.

  • The main thing I did was write down the highlights of my current job, and the skills that I’ve learned while working for Riverside so far. I just need to condense it down into something that’s resume-worthy.
  • I’m not planning on leaving my current job anytime soon, but I know that it’s a good idea to keep my resume updated and refreshed.
  • I also need to overhaul my LinkedIn profile.

Publish a bigger variety of blog posts. — Accomplished!

Final Thoughts:

  • I was able to put Accomplished next to six out of 10 goals! Yay!
  • The three goals that were Semi-Achieved: I’m happy with my progress with these goals.
  • The one goal that I did not accomplish: I’m okay with this – I’ll be able to mark it as officially Accomplished at the end of this week!

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

Come back tomorrow to see my August Goals!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Hot Topic #21: The Confounding Congress


Image Credit: AZ Quotes

Disclaimer: This post contains strong language.

Hey there, readers. Bear with me. This post is probably going to be long-winded, basically a stream of consciousness, and likely have a significant amount of profanity in it.

You’ve been warned.

As a result of a spirited discussion with my wonderful husband last weekend (Note – Not spirited as in angry or anything. We typically tend to agree on most things, including politics and things going on in Washington), I’ve been inspired / motivated to write out some thoughts about our United States Congress.

Simply put – It’s completely fucked up.

And it has been for a LONG time.

Meanwhile in Congress

Image Credit: Meme Center

I decided to read through the entire U.S. Constitution.

Friends, it’s been way too long since I read this (I think the last time I read it in full was, begrudgingly, for my 10th grade IB Government class). I’m glad that I took the time to read it – It was like another education.

The Patriot Post

Image Credit: The Patriot Post

Here’s some highlights:

“All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House of Representatives.” (Article I, Section 1)

“The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States, and the Electors in each State shall have the Qualifications requisite for Electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature.” (Article I, Section 2).

“The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, [chosen by the Legislature thereof,]* for six Years; and each Senator shall have one Vote.” (Article I, Section 3).

“The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States. They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.” (Article I, Section 6).

“The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration.” (The 16th Amendment – Passed by Congress July 2, 1909. Ratified February 3, 1913.)

“No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of representatives shall have intervened.” (The 27th Amendment – Originally proposed Sept. 25, 1789. Ratified May 7, 1992.)

They’re fighting over healthcare, but they all know that they’re completely exempt from whatever legislation that eventually passes?

I say that every member of Congress should have to go through the same process that all of the other Americans in this country go through to sign up for healthcare. They should experience the hardships that so many others face!

There is no “employer-sponsored healthcare” in this instance – That’s only for people who work for businesses that offer health plans to them. Period!

Wouldn’t it be great if Congress also couldn’t vote for themselves?

I wish that every member of Congress could be knocked down a peg, so to speak. I wish we, the people, could mandate that every single member only makes $7.25 an hour. Yep, you got that right, make sure that those serving in Congress only make minimum wage.

Oh, and you’re capped at 40 hours a week. No overtime. Nothing extra. And during those 40 hours, you get your work done. If your work isn’t done … You can be fired. Kicked to the curb. If you’re kicked out, then you have to go back home and start all over. Plenty of Americans have gone through layoffs, corporate restructuring, and being fired. Why should members of Congress just be able to sail through?

You get two weeks of vacation per year – That’s it. No more ridiculous recesses that last WEEKS. Recess is for those in elementary school.

No more housing allowances – That’s only given to those who serve our country in our armed forces. Period.

Back to healthcare for a minute. Since you, as a member of Congress, only make $7.25 an hour – You have to choose your healthcare like anyone else who only makes minimum wage. Yep, that makes you have to take the time and go on or go through the exchanges to find your health plan.

Oh, and you have to make sure your spouse and all of your children are covered, too.

Not so easy now, is it?

Oh, and whatever happened to serving in Congress actually being a service to your constituents and this great nation?

If I remember correctly, not too long ago, there were no career politicians. None, zero. There were farmers who were elected in Kansas, businessmen elected in Arizona, dentists elected in California – Those men (and later women) maintained their households, jobs and/or businesses, and lives in their constituencies. When their work was done in Washington, they went back to their families and jobs and businesses at home, and worked with their constituents to help their districts change for the better. These men and women didn’t have apartments or houses in Washington, Virginia, or Maryland. They went home to Kansas, Arizona, California, and so on!


Image Credit: PolitiFact — Based on numbers from 2014, this is nearly 100 percent accurate. *facepalm*

If you stuck with me through now, thanks for reading! I try really hard to not get political on the blog. But, sometimes, something makes me really mad, and the best way that I cope is to write about it!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Hot Topic #20: Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church

Pope Francis

Image Credit: AZ Quotes

To start researching for this post, I simply put the following words into the Google search bar:

sex abuse in the catholic church

On just the first page of results, this is what I found:

Note – For all my blog posts involving research, I do my best to cite multiple sources that are credible.

It was absolutely overwhelming to see the hits from that simple six-word inquiry. Google started to complete what I wanted after I had only typed “sex abuse.”

As I was beginning to compose the structure of this post, I thought of two recent forms of “entertainment” that specifically focuses on this topic:

  1. Spotlight
  2. The Keepers

I’ve seen Spotlight (2015) three times now, and it’s one of those movies that’s made a lasting impression on me. I was pleased that it received recognition, critical acclaim, and a few Oscars. Despite the plot centering on something so horrific and sickening, it quickly rose to near the top of my all-time favorite movies. It’s a well-written, well-cast, and well-performed motion picture. If you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend that you do so. I have a feeling you will come to the end of the movie a changed person. I know I’m glad that I went to see it in theaters, and watched it several times since then.

I recently wrote a blog post about The Keepers (2017). It’s a decent documentary series that was created by Netflix, and another one that I recommend that people watch and (attempt to) digest. While not nearly as good as Spotlight, in my opinion, it’s still something valuable to see.

Here’s a few sources I found on Spotlight and The Keepers:

I was raised in the United Methodist Church, but I have attended many other churches of different denominations throughout my life – Baptist, Catholic, Congregational, Episcopalian, Lutheran, Presbyterian, and United Church of Christ.

I knew certain aspects were different from the United Methodist Sunday School and traditional 11:00 a.m. services that I attended nearly every Sunday, unless we were traveling or visiting family. Most Sundays until I went off to college, you would find me in a church. For example, I tasted my first Communion wine while attending a local church service with Christine Anzur and her family after a weekend sleepover in elementary school, and I nearly gagged. I was inherently used to King’s Hawaiian bread and Welch’s grape juice every first Sunday of the month at Aldersgate. I knew a few devout Catholics, and learning about Mass, cantors, and priests was fascinating and intriguing.

As I grew older, I started to have a lot of questions.

  • What is celibacy?
  • Why were priests celibate?
  • What made them different from our pastor or minister? We had a female associate pastor when I was growing up (And we have a wonderful one now!), but why wasn’t a woman leading any of the Catholic churches?

Things like that. As a child and a teenager, I felt confident that I could trust the pastors at Aldersgate – They were all married men and devoted to their families.

I don’t remember the first time I heard about sex abuse in the Catholic Church, but I do clearly remember that my mind immediately starting racing with thoughts like, “Why? Why on Earth would a man of God do something so horrible? And, why haven’t we seen more of this in the news?”

As an adult, I’m finally starting to realize how deep and wide this cycle of abuse has run. I’m glad that priests, cardinals, and other officials are starting to be charged with these unspeakable crimes, but I know this is a never-ending saga. This is only the beginning.

Exposes, so to speak, like Spotlight and The Keepers, are glancing just the tip of this massive iceberg. This is bigger than what sank the Titanic. At the end of Spotlight, viewers are shown a list of places around the world where major abuse scandals took place. It was something immensely powerful. I already felt immensely sick from watching the movie, and seeing that long list just turned my stomach even further. It compelled me to do more than just watch the movie multiple times. It’s inspired me to do more research on the subject, and write blog posts like this one.

This is such a deep topic that I feel like I can’t possibly cover everything that’s happened over the years, or say everything that I want to in this one blog post.

For now, I plan to keep researching, watching / reading the news sources that I trust, and follow any new developments. I hope to publish another blog post, with hopefully some more good news, at some point in the future.

I also intend to watch more films and documentaries, as well as look into other forms of media, to observe the different portrayals of this incredible saga.

This is a tough topic – One of the toughest that I’ve attempted to write about since starting this little blog of mine. I hope what I have written / presented is informative, to say the least.

I welcome any constructive comments, as well as recommendations of any compelling or interesting sources that you have come across.

Thanks for reading!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #74: July Goals

July Goals

Image Credit: Pinterest

Here we are! Summer in Virginia is in full swing. Hot and humid!

Here are my goals for the month of July:

  1. Clear the clothing clutter.
  2. Start designing my custom American Girl doll cabinet / storage unit.
  3. Register for the fall semester.
  4. See Spider-Man: Homecoming.
  5. See Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.
  6. Write at least 200 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo attempt.
  7. Work toward weekly meal planning.
  8. Set up a consistent cleaning schedule.
  9. Update my resume.
  10. Publish a bigger variety of blog posts.

Here’s the breakdown:

Clear the clothing clutter.

  • Piggybacking off of last month, we’re trying to clean out our closets. There’s a lot of things that don’t fit / we don’t wear anymore.
  • We just need to bag it all up, and head to the local thrift stores.

Start designing my custom American Girl doll cabinet / storage unit.

  • This is going to be my birthday gift from Al. I’m so excited!
  • I’ve been designing it in my head ever since we started talking about it last weekend in the car.
  • I’ll finally have a functional / beautiful way to store my dolls and their clothes / accessories.
  • This will be a fun project that we can work on together!
  • I promise pictures!

Register for the fall semester.

  • Once the replacement Longwood transcripts come in, I’m making an appointment on campus to make sure everything is taken care in terms of transfer credits.
  • After that, I’ll talk with Professor Pedigo to make sure everything is squared away.
  • Then, I can finally register for Legal Writing!

See Spider-Man: Homecoming.

  • We’re definitely going to see it on Thursday, July 6th!
  • Depending on how the first show goes, we may go see it again with friends.

See Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets.

  • I was initially skeptical about this one.
  • But, after watching several YouTube videos and reading more about it, I’m excited to see it!
  • It looks super trippy, in a good way. I’m excited to see how they interpret the graphic novel.

Write at least 200 new words for my 2012 NaNoWriMo attempt.

  • I was re-reading what I’ve written so far, and I’ve been jotting down some thoughts. I’m excited to add more to the story, bit by bit.

Work toward weekly meal planning.

  • After looking at our budget recently, and finding out earlier this week that we need to replace our HVAC system, I’m motivated to start meal planning in a notebook.
  • We have several good recipes that we like and use a lot, but any new ideas and welcomed and appreciated!

Set up a consistent cleaning schedule.

  • This is another thing I want to put in writing, or on the calendar in the kitchen.
  • I need to make time every weekend to do some cleaning, so stuff like dust doesn’t pile up.
  • We have our laundry and sink / dishwasher routines down cold, but vacuuming / dust mopping / dusting – Not so much.
  • As an adult with my own house, I’m now starting to understand why my mom had me do certain things at certain times every month – It really helps!

Update my resume.

  • In talking with Professor Pedigo at the blood drive last month, she’s offered to help me update my resume. She keeps student resumes on file for lawyers needing help, and other job opportunities.
  • She also recommends to update it every six months, so I’d like to get in the habit of doing that now.
  • I also want to update my LinkedIn profile, and a few other professional things this month.

Publish a bigger variety of blog posts.

Do you have any goals for the month of July?

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #73: June Goals Recap

June Goals Recap

Image Credit: Fueled By Carrots

June is over!

Here’s the link to my June Goals post:


Here we go!

  1. Celebrate our 100th blood drive! — Accomplished!
  2. Refresh/update my summer wardrobe. — Semi-Achieved.
  3. See Wonder Woman! — Accomplished!
  4. Celebrate Nick and Savy’s engagement/upcoming wedding! — Accomplished!
  5. Attend the 10-year high school reunion with my IB classmates. — Accomplished!
  6. Celebrate Mom’s retirement! — Accomplished!
  7. Buy bikes! — Accomplished!
  8. Visit the library at least once. — Accomplished!
  9. Work to write between three-four Book Reviews. — Accomplished!

Here’s the breakdown:

Celebrate our 100th blood drive! — Accomplished!

  • We had an excellent blood drive for #100 on Saturday, June 3rd.
  • I was FINALLY able to give blood – Happy dance!
  • We collected 60 units total, which is excellent for a summer drive. Historically, the summer months are the worst for the Red Cross and other blood banks, because there are less donors.

Blood Drive 100

The awesome cake my mom bought at our local BJ’s!

Refresh/update my summer wardrobe. — Semi-Achieved.

  • I’m mainly happy that I moved/re-organized my fall/winter clothes! Those are stored away until the seasons change again (It won’t be long!)
  • I also moved some spring/summer clothes into my closet, and organized those properly.
  • Next: Go through the huge hamper at the bottom of the closet!

See Wonder Woman! — Accomplished!

  • I’m so glad we went to see it. It was AWESOME!
  • Gal Gadot is a FREAKING ROCKSTAR.
  • If you haven’t seen it, it is highly recommended!

Wonder Woman

Al’s caption on Facebook, June 4th: “Going to see Wonder Woman with my Wonder Woman.”

Celebrate Nick and Savy’s engagement/upcoming wedding! — Accomplished!

  • We had a great time at their house, as we always do.
  • Al’s parents drove us there, and my mom came with us!
  • It was an awesome reunion – Seeing Mia, Crystal and Steven, Jeremy and Chelsea, Rachel and Jason, Kudu, and others!

Attend the 10-year high school reunion with my IB classmates. — Accomplished!

  • After a few challenges, like changing restaurants, 18 of us (11 classmates, 7 spouses, and Sean’s not-so-little brother) gathered at Waterman’s at the Virginia Beach Oceanfront on Saturday, June 17th. We had a great time!
  • Thanks, Sean, for setting this up!
  • We had to wait an hour and a half for a table big enough to open up, so a bunch of us gathered on the boardwalk for a while. We stood in a huge circle and had a great time catching up and reminiscing. It was really great to have that opportunity, because by the time we got in the restaurant to eat, it was hard to hear everyone!

Markus Miller

Markus was smart to hand his phone to our waiter! This is one of the better photos. It was so great to see everyone! Image Credit: Markus Miller.

Celebrate Mom’s retirement! — Accomplished!

  • We celebrated at Spaghetti Eddie’s with my parents on the last day of school.
  • The school had a wonderful end-of-the-year luncheon, where Mom and several other retiring teachers and staff were recognized.
  • A photo mat was passed around the school and signed for my mom, and all the messages were so sweet!
  • She received a wonderful send-off after 23 years at Chittum Elementary.

Buy bikes! — Accomplished!

  • We were able to support a fantastic local business, SCAT Bikes – And, they’re only a few miles from our house!
  • In one Saturday, we purchased two bikes, two helmets, a bike rack that works for both of our cars, and a fancy adjustable bar that makes my bike more stable when transporting it.


Al took this photo last weekend before we hopped on. We love riding around our neighborhood – Very safe and quiet. We certainly work up a good sweat! The only change we’ll make is better bike seats!

Visit the library at least once. — Accomplished!

  • I went twice!
  • I picked up The Man in the High Castle and The Lost Symbol, and then renewed The Lost Symbol. I’m deep into that one now, and loving it! Trying hard to finish it before next Saturday!

Work to write between three-four Book Reviews. — Accomplished!

Final Thoughts:

  • I was able to put Accomplished next to eight out of nine goals. I think this is a record! I was so excited when I started counting!
  • The one goal that was Semi-Achieved: I’m just happy that I got things organized. I still have some more work to do, but that’s fine by me!

Did you have any goals for June?

Come back tomorrow to see my goals for July!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂