Getting Personal #261: October Goals

Image Credit: Found on Facebook from a friend.

Welcome back!

Here are my goals for the month of October:

  1. Donate blood.
  2. Celebrate Mom’s birthday!
  3. Enjoy a good friend’s bachelorette celebration.
  4. Mail a long-overdue package to my university sorority sisters.
  5. Complete another consignment box for Darby’s Dresses.
  6. Prepare for NaNoWriMo 2021.
  7. Complete the first pass review of the current version of book 3.
  8. Sell or donate all American Girl items that were previously set aside.

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


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #260: September Goals Recap

Image Credit: pinterest.com

Welcome back!

Here were my goals for the month of September:

  1. Go through all of my American Girl items, and set aside those marked for future sale. —- Accomplished!
  2. Schedule donation pick-up for the large bags of clothing and household items that need to leave my office pronto. —- Accomplished!
  3. Schedule more time off from work. —- Accomplished!
  4. Successfully coordinate my work department move. —- Accomplished!
  5. Set additional screen time limits, both at work and at home. —- Semi-Achieved.
  6. Make at least one significant editing pass through the printed version of book 2. —- Did not accomplish yet.
  7. Continue meal planning. —- Accomplished!
  8. Look into getting re-certified in adult and/or pediatric CPR. —- Accomplished!
  9. Begin planning for NaNoWriMo 2021. —- Semi-Achieved.
  10. Start reviewing the current version of book 3. —- Did not accomplish yet.
  11. Look into a business course or something similar to prepare for my launch as an author. —- Accomplished!
  12. Keep up my library patronage. —- Accomplished!
  13. Prepare to donate blood again in October. —- Accomplished!
  14. Restart my regular TBR Recap posts. —- Accomplished!

September was really good and really successful for me in a lot of areas. I’m proud of myself. Mostly with my home office. It’s finally sorted out and clean!!

I’m excited to get re-certified in adult and pediatric CPR. I signed up for a hybrid course through the American Red Cross. I have some virtual learning to do, and then I’ll go to the Red Cross Building in Norfolk at the end of the month for the in-person part. The last time I was certified was almost 20 years ago now, and I know a lot of things have been updated since then.

I need to do some more work regarding my future business and becoming an author, but I’ve had several great conversations recently with people who have had experience with publishing and navigating the business side of writing.

I’m getting really excited for NaNoWriMo 2021. I took last November off for mental health reasons, but I’m re-energized now and ready to write again for 30 days!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #259: My Skin & Makeup Routines (Part 7)

From Summer’s Concoctions!

Welcome back! It’s been almost two years since I did one of these posts. I have some awesome new products to share and rave about!

Here are the links to my other posts:


Skin

Bath and Body Works – I love the Beautiful Day scent! I found this scent through a beautiful gift basket that was given to me for my wedding nearly six years ago (Where did the time go?!). I’ve bought it ever since.

Summer’s Concoctions! – This is the newest small business I learned about through social media. I love Summer and her determination to grow her business. She’s a former multi-level marketing consultant / independent contractor, but decided to get out and start her own business. I’m so proud of her! I joined her own new Facebook group after seeing her posts in a great group called your MLM is not a small business, Karen. I immediately placed an order with her. I cannot rave about her products enough. I’ve bought her Body Butter and Body Scrub so far, and I can’t wait to buy more. Her products are handmade, affordable, and really fast shipping! They smell amazing, too!! I’m borderline obsessed with the Orange Ginger! And she has a long, long list of scents to choose from – New colors, too. I paid $31 total for the six two-ounce (2 oz.) jars and shipping. It got to me in less than a week from Indiana to Virginia. She is super responsive to messages. She’s currently operating through Facebook only, but I’ll keep you posted if she has other business updates. She just posted a customer’s order of Christmas-scented hand sanitizers, so you better believe I’m jumping on that quick!

Clean & Clear – I’m using up my existing products now. I plan to switch to CeraVe soon.

This deodorant has changed my world. I think I found it at CVS or Walgreens a while ago.


Hair

Herbal Essences – I’m currently using Hello Hydration, the large bottles from BJs. Once that’s used up, I have new bottles of Moroccan My Shine ready. I found it through Harris Teeter.


Makeup

Eyeliner – Illamasqua felt tip liquid liner. I found this unopened sample from the eBay store Needle in a Haystack Treasures. Please check out Cynthia’s store! I’ve found a lot of great things from her in the last few years.

Great Lash Clear Mascara – This has been a great alternative to black/brown mascara.


What about you?

Do you have a certain skin routine? What about makeup?

Have you tried any homemade recipes related to skin or makeup?

Let me know about any awesome small businesses that you support, too!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #258: Nineteenth TBR Recap

Image Credit: hippoquotes.com

Welcome back!

Here’s what I’ve read since my last TBR post:

  1. Austen, Jane, Pride and Prejudice (DNF)
  2. Gladwell, Malcolm, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference — Review coming soon!
  3. Hakesley, Faith, Glimmers of Grace: Moments of Peace and Healing Following Sexual Abuse — Review coming soon!
  4. King, Stephen, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft
  5. Rosen, L.C., Camp

Removing from Laura Beth’s TBR

  1. Thomas, Angie, The Hate U Give

Keep & Re-Classify – Laura Beth’s Updated TBR

  1. Cullen, Dave, Parkland: Birth of a Movement
  2. Elliott, T.E., Service and Slumber: A Historical Tale Inspired by Sleeping Beauty (The Beast’s Legacy Book 2)
  3. Mlynowski, Sarah, I See London, I See France
  4. Oviatt, Didi, Sketch
  5. Owens, Delia, Where The Crawdads Sing
  6. Yee, Lisa, Lea Dives In

Getting Personal #257: Reflections on September 11th, 20 Years Later

When I started writing this post, I could have sworn the last time I wrote about September 11th was in 2016 for the 15th anniversary. Turns out, my only post about it so far on this blog was in 2019, for the 18th anniversary.

What I wrote in 2019 captures a lot of what I was preparing to write today, so I’ll let you read those words on that post, if you choose. A warning: I do have several images in that post that are disturbing from 2001. Proceed with caution.


I will say today that I remember, 20 years ago, that I felt true fear and anxiety. A few days ago, I thought those feelings on that brilliant Tuesday were the first time I felt them, at 13 years old. Now, I’m fairly certain it was the second time that I felt fear, anxiety, and despair. The first time was on April 20, 1999, the day of the Columbine High School massacre.

I think of the 2,977 innocent lives that were lost on the four planes, the World Trade Center, and the Pentagon. I think of the firefighters and other first responders. All of them were heroes and heroines. I think of the unborn children. I think of the children who lost their parents or their other family members. The entire nation – The entire word – was changed on September 11, 2001.

I was watching the sun rise this morning as I drove to get breakfast for Al and I this morning. I stopped the podcast I was listening to mid-sentence, and I found myself praying as I drove back home. I was expressing gratitude for still being on this Earth, watching another sunrise.

As I finish this post today, in the middle of the afternoon, the sun is shining, it’s 78 degrees and so pleasant. Fall is on the way. And I think of all the families – Families of the victims, families of the rescuers, families who were directly affected by the debris and destruction in New York, Arlington, and Shanksville. I’ve consumed more news media this week than normal, because so many stations and channels have been covering the 20th anniversary. At the end of this post, I’ll share a few links of ones that captured my heart. All of them made me cry.

Today has been about reflection, gratitude, and prayer. I’m definitely a different person at 33 years old than I was at 13. And I’m grateful to be writing about it, hopefully as respectfully as I can be.

God Bless America. God bless us all.


20th Anniversary Coverage

They Lost Loves Ones In 9/11. We Invited Them To Leave A Voicemail In Their Memory | NPR

America After 9/11 | FRONTLINE

The children of 9/11 sit down 20 years later | Good Morning America


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #256: September Goals

Image Credit: Entrepreneur Delights

Welcome back!

I cannot believe it’s already September 2021! Every year gets faster, I swear. The only exception was 2020, and I think a lot of us know why that is.


Here are my goals for the month of September:

  1. Go through all of my American Girl items, and set aside those marked for future sale.
  2. Schedule donation pick-up for the large bags of clothing and household items that need to leave my office pronto.
  3. Schedule more time off from work.
  4. Successfully coordinate my work department move.
  5. Set additional screen time limits, both at work and at home.
  6. Make at least one significant editing pass through the printed version of book 2.
  7. Continue meal planning.
  8. Look into getting re-certified in adult and/or pediatric CPR.
  9. Begin planning for NaNoWriMo 2021.
  10. Start reviewing the current version of book 3.
  11. Look into a business course or something similar to prepare for my launch as an author.
  12. Keep up my library patronage.
  13. Prepare to donate blood again in October.
  14. Restart my regular TBR Recap posts.

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

Tell me about it in the comments – I’d love to cheer you on!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #255: August Goals Recap

Image Credit: pinterest.com

Welcome back!

Here were my goals for the month of August:

  1. Donate blood. — Accomplished!
  2. Celebrate my birthday! — Accomplished!
  3. Write and publish my annual Reflections on My Birthday post. — Accomplished!
  4. Make a dent in the mess in my office. — Did not accomplish yet.
  5. Continue meal planning. — Accomplished!
  6. Publish one Book Review. — Did not accomplish yet.
  7. Continue my reduced social media weekends. — Semi-Achieved.
  8. Make progress with editing book 2. — Semi-Achieved.
  9. Donate books to the library. — Accomplished!

August was really good. But, it also went by really quickly!

I had a wonderful birthday weekend! My birthday was on a Saturday this year, so I took off the day before from work. It was amazing. I’ve been hooked on Cold Case on HBO Max, so I blissfully lounged on the couch with Phineas and Ferb most of the day! The blood drive was on my birthday, so I was thrilled to give blood and celebrate with about 90 people throughout the day, My parents bought a variety of fun size Reese’s candies to hand out to everyone, and my mom decorated Fellowship Hall with birthday banners! Al treated me to sushi on Saturday night, yum! And then my mom had us over for an amazing dinner on Sunday!

I enjoyed writing my annual Reflections on My Birthday post. It’s a great tradition for me.

I discovered that the myLidl app has amazing recipes! I made amazing chicken shawarma for Al’s lunches one week, and he wants me to make it again soon! Al’s mom also sent us a great casserole recipe that we both loved: Chicken BBQ Ranch Casserole | Julia Pacheco

I’ve definitely been reading more recently, but Book Reviews are another story. I’m close to finishing up two books now, so I’m hoping to have more Book Reviews published soon!

I didn’t make as much progress with editing book 2 as I would have liked, but I chalk that up to things being really hectic at work for nearly a month, and things are just now calming down and settling back to normal.

I gathered up four big shopping bags full of books to donate, and I carted those to the Friends of the Library on August 21st. I also re-established my library patronage, and checked out three books! I may scale back to one book per checkout when I return those three tomorrow, but I’m happy that I’ve gotten back into borrowing from the library. Going to the library is an incredible, consistent memory of mine, and I’m excited to keep it going as an adult. Plus, it will save me money, too!


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

Come back soon to see my goals for September!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #254: Reflections, On My Birthday

Image Credit: lilyandval.com

I love doing these Birthday Reflections posts every year!

This year so far has been about growth and change. I worked from home from March 2020-June 2021, only going into the office when absolutely necessary. We started our hybrid schedule on July 1st. I felt strangely anxious that whole week, but getting through those first full eight hours back in the office felt like a great accomplishment. Now, it’s three days in the office and two days at home. Good stuff.

I also started therapy again, for the first time in almost six years. I have a wonderful therapist through the BetterHelp app!

Phineas and Ferb are our grumpy old men, they turn 12 in November. We will celebrate three years of having them in our lives in December!

Al and I celebrated five years of marriage in November! We enjoyed some recipes from The Official Star Wars Cookbook during our anniversary weekend.

I finished the second draft of my first book, hoping to publish that one by the end of the year. I finished the first draft of book number two in May, after an immensely productive Camp NaNoWriMo in April. Major props to Ren and their Twitch streams for helping me surpass my goal. Hoping to work on book number three in the fall!

I adore the Harris Teeter grocery app, Lidl, and I’ve fallen in love with LEGO all over again. My podcasts are almost all true crime. I’ve been indulging myself in the world of Cold Case on HBO Max recently, and it’s been awesome.

I’m grateful for every single day. It’s not lost on me that today marks 33 years since I was a blood recipient for the first time. Today, I was able to volunteer at our 124th blood drive in 21 years, and I was able to give the gift of life again. By my dad’s count, I’ve currently given over seven gallons of blood since my first donation in 2005, right after I turned 17. I hope to continue giving as long as I am able to.

Here’s to 33!


Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #253: August Goals

Image Credit: transforminglifenow

Welcome back!

Here are my goals for the month of August:

  1. Donate blood.
  2. Celebrate my birthday!
  3. Write and publish my annual Reflections on My Birthday post.
  4. Make a dent in the mess in my office.
  5. Continue meal planning.
  6. Publish one Book Review.
  7. Continue my reduced social media weekends.
  8. Make progress with editing book 2.
  9. Donate books to the library.

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

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #252: July Goals Recap

Image Credit: Entrepreneur Delights

Welcome back!

Here were my goals for the month of July:

  1. Enjoy an extended Fourth of July weekend away at the farm. —- Accomplished!
  2. Continue editing the printed draft of book 2. —- Semi-Achieved!
  3. Send the draft of book 2 to my designated readers. —- Accomplished!
  4. Participate in Camp NaNoWriMo July 2021. —- Did not accomplish this time.
  5. Make progress with reading at least one book. —- Accomplished!
  6. Send a consignment box to Darby’s Dresses. — Accomplished!
  7. Organize my American Girl items to post for sale. —- Did not accomplish yet.
  8. Begin adjusting to my new hybrid work schedule. —- Accomplished!

July flew by. We had a great extended weekend with Al’s parents, with the exception of me getting cellulitis! I went to urgent care the day after getting home, and I was on antibiotics for 10 days. 0/10 do not recommend. Infected bug bites are no fun!

I worked a lot, recovered from a summer cold, started wearing my mask again, ate good food, and took every single weekend to rest and recharge. We had a great movie night with our neighbors late last week!

I’m hoping to publish at least one Book Review on the blog in August!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂