Getting Personal #282: June Goals

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Welcome back!

Here are my goals for the month of June:

  1. Donate blood.
  2. Clean off the couch in my office and keep it clean.
  3. Make progress with cleaning and organizing the garage.
  4. Submit my ancestryDNA kit.
  5. Donate a lot of American Girl items to Trey’s Dolls.
  6. Continue reading most nights before bed.
  7. Send off my thredUP Clean Out Kit.
  8. Publish at least one Book Review.
  9. Make progress in editing book #2.
  10. Prepare for Camp NaNoWriMo July 2022!

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

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #281: May Goals Recap

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Welcome back!

Here were my goals for the month of May:

  1. Reach 100 Book Reviews! — Accomplished!
  2. Have a successful 2022 Virginia State Convention of P.E.O. as one of the co-chair and hostess chapters. — Accomplished!
  3. Host a fun family cookout. — Accomplished!
  4. Continue progress on keeping my office clean and organized. — Semi-Achieved.
  5. Drink more water. — Accomplished!
  6. Keep the potted plants alive! — Accomplished!

May was wild and crazy. I’m really happy with everything I’ve accomplished.

I reached 100 Book Reviews! Yahoo!

I successfully co-chaired the 2022 P.E.O. Virginia State Convention! It was a great event. Looking forward to 2023 already.

We had a great cookout for Mother’s Day weekend. Even though the weather wasn’t as cooperative as we’d liked (50 degrees in early May!) – We made the best of it.

I have more work to do on my office, but I broke down a lot of old boxes and have more floor space. Next is gathering up and sending off American Girl items for donation to Trey’s Dolls, a wonderful charity that was started years ago by Trey’s mom, Vicki. She and I met in the amazing AG Obsessed group on Facebook.

The potted plants are doing great. I received a spider plant and an ivy plant during the P.E.O. Convention, so I made another trip to Lowe’s last weekend and got another large planter for the ivy and a really pretty hanging planter for the spider plant. I never thought I would be a plant person, but I really like it now.

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

Come back tomorrow to see my goals for June!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #279: April Goals Recap

Welcome back!

Here were my goals for the month of April:

  1. Donate blood. — Did not accomplish this time.
  2. Celebrate birthdays! — Accomplished!
  3. Celebrate a milestone wedding anniversary. — Accomplished!
  4. Enjoy some time away. — Did not accomplish this time.
  5. Get to 100 Book Reviews! — Did not accomplish yet.
  6. Continue decluttering, especially my huge mountain of clothing. — Accomplished!
  7. Make progress with cleaning and organizing the garage. — Semi-Achieved.
  8. Stay on top of filing paperwork right away. — Semi-Achieved.

My iron was too low to give blood during our April blood drive, but it wasn’t historically low. We are getting very close to another milestone – 8,000 total units since April 2000. I think we may actually hit that mark at our June drive. Fingers crossed!

We celebrated my dad’s birthday the same weekend as the blood drive, and it was awesome. My mom outdid herself with the food. We also had a surprise guest – One of my parents’ former neighbors flew into town to pick up their sports car that my parents had been car-sitting since the fall of 2021. It was really nice to see him and catch up. He’s a retired helicopter pilot who flew our region’s primary air ambulance for more than 30 years.

I’m so excited about getting to 99 Book Reviews! I’m hoping to reach 100 very soon. I have three books that I’m currently reading. I’ve enjoyed reading at night again. Not every night, but a couple of nights a week. I’ve also been trying to read a bit in the hammock on the porch if the weather is good.

I finally got sick and tired of constantly sorting through full laundry baskets of clean clothes, so on April 23rd I dedicated that Saturday to go to town and finally get decluttered and organized. I walked more than 12,000 steps by the time I was done. Coincidentally, the local Vietnam Veterans Association had a donation pick-up scheduled for Tuesday, April 26th, so I took that as a sign to get it done. I reorganized my under-bed drawers, vacuumed, took everything out of my closet, reorganized my dresser, tried a pile of things on, and finally got things the way I wanted it. I still have some more clothes to go through, but the Vietnam Veterans Association took no less than seven full bags/boxes of items (clothes, duplicate books, and household items). I also donated four pairs of shoes that didn’t fit, so the shoe rack is cleaner now as well. That same day, I ordered another clean-out kit from thredUP, so when that arrives, I’ll fill that bag and send it off. It’s much nicer going to my closet every morning and finding things that actually fit and feel comfortable.

I also tackled part of my office, so my desk is far less cluttered, and I have more floor space! I still have more work to do on my American Girl collection, but a lot of the boxes and things that were just collecting dust are either gone, recycled, or now in their proper place.

The garage is going to be an ongoing project that Al and I will be tackling together. There’s a lot of things in there that can probably go in the trash or be donated. Al also wants to revamp the shelving system.

What about you? What goals did you have for the month of April?

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #235: Part of History (January 20, 2021)

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Today has been a momentous day for me. See below. This is what I posted on Facebook this morning. I’m still in awe, and still celebrating.

I hope others in my life will be able to get the COVID-19 vaccine soon!

Cheers, friends!

January 20, 2021

How am I feeling? Grateful, humbled, thankful.

I received my first dose of the Pfizer vaccine this morning at Sentara Obici Hospital.

The staff at Obici were fabulous. Everything went smoothly. The first dose felt exactly like the flu shot. Aside from a slightly sore arm, I’m not feeling any side effects.

After I got back to my car, I prayed. I thanked God for this opportunity. My 95-year-old Grandpa got his first dose at the Portsmouth Naval Medical Center yesterday.

Today is also Inauguration Day. The U.S. will have a new President, and the first-ever woman Vice President will be sworn in. I’m grateful, humbled, and thankful.

Now, it’s back to work (from home), but I feel better and safer today than I have in a long, long time.

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #221: August Goals Recap

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Welcome back!

Here’s the link to my August Goals post: Getting Personal #219: August Goals

Here are my goals for the month of August:

  1. Donate blood. — Semi-Achieved.
  2. Celebrate my birthday! — Accomplished!
  3. Finish the book I’m currently reading, and publish the review. — Accomplished!
  4. Get the photos and other wall hanging items off the floor in my office and get them on the walls. — Did not accomplish.
  5. Make at least one thrift store donation run. — Accomplished!
  6. Start the second round of editing for my first novel – Translate my handwritten notes from April’s Camp NaNoWriMo session into my computer. — Accomplished!
  7. Get my P.E.O. President materials organized. — Semi-Achieved.
  8. Write a blog post about my July Camp NaNoWriMo session. — Did not accomplish.
  9. Put away all the clean laundry. — Did not accomplish.
  10. Commit to putting away clean laundry in a more organized, efficient manner. — Semi-Achieved.
  11. Participate in a fun pet portrait session that was a giveaway win. — Accomplished!
  12. Finish re-organizing the filing system. — Did not accomplish.
  13. Finish de-cluttering the dining room buffet. — Did not accomplish.

August was a bit of a strange month!

My iron was high enough to donate blood at our drive on August 1st, but I wasn’t able to fill the bag. I got SO CLOSE, and my vein decided to clot up at the very end. I was so mad. But, I’m able to donate again in October.

I enjoyed my birthday, as much as I could with COVID-19. It fell on a Friday. I took the afternoon off of work, started a Jurassic Park movie marathon, and then my mom had us over for Cuban sandwiches, sweet potato fries, ice cream, and chewy fudge brownies. I felt so much love! Debbie D. was there, and I was able to celebrate my birthday with my Grandpa for the first time in years.

I finished reading Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson.

At the end of the month, I was asked to take mandatory leave. One of those days was August 24th, so I capitalized on the time off to make some progress on the second draft of my first novel. I was blown away with the headway I made. I was able to edit the first 40 chapters! And then I was able to finish the draft on Friday afternoon. I currently have 48 chapters. I’m excited to send it to my list of readers this week!

The house projects are still works in progress. This past weekend, however, I made more progress with my office, a.k.a. the Lady Lounge. I took out the old set of three DVD shelves, removed a full bag of trash, dusted thoroughly, and gathered several boxes for donation. Al helped me assemble my new six-shelf room organizer and navy blue bins, and it looks so much better. The dogs and I have a lot more room to navigate now!

I also posted 45 photos of American Girl doll clothes and accessories on social media, and made my first sale! I shipped those items off today. I still have three plastic storage boxes of items to photograph and post!

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

Come back tomorrow to see my goals for September!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Tag #97: “The Bookish Heavenly Virtues Tag”

Image Credit: Ebook Friendly

I spotted this tag on Destiny’s blog, Howling Libraries!

Here’s the link to Destiny’s post: The Bookish Heavenly Virtues Tag

Here we go!

CHASTITY: Which author/book/series do you wish you had never read?

The Divergent trilogy by Veronica Roth. I liked Divergent and loved Insurgent, but Allegiant ruined everything for me.

TEMPERANCE: Which book/series did you find so good, that you didn’t want to read it all at once, and you read it in doses just to make the pleasure last longer?

The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins.

CHARITY: Which book/series/author do you tirelessly push to others, telling them about it or even given away spare copies bought for that reason?

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald. I re-read it every year.

DILIGENCE: Which series/author do you follow no matter what happens and how long you have to wait?

Barbara Ehrenreich. I’ve learned so much from her books!

PATIENCE: Is there an author/book/series you’ve read that improved with time the most, starting out unpromising, but ultimately proving rewarding?

I honestly can’t think of one!

KINDNESS: Which fictitious character would you consider your role model in the hassle of everyday life?

I can’t think of one!

HUMILITY: Which book/series/author do you find most underrated?

Fallible Justice by Laura Laakso. I received an ARC from the publisher in the U.K. in 2018. I’m not usually a paranormal fan, but this book was refreshing. I could barely put it down!

Tag – You’re It!

Sara – The Bibliophagist

Kristian – Life Lessons Around The Dinner Table

Jenna – Bookmark Your Thoughts

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Tag #96: “Do I Have That Other Book Challenge”

This is my bookshelf in my office!

I saw this on Lori’s blog, All Things Momma Blog, and decided to make my own post! It’s not a traditional tag, but a fun challenge!

Here’s what Lori writes: “The original of this challenge was fun and stressful and now there is another one. Hooray. Part two was created by Keeping Tabs and Current Chapter on youtube. It is a scavenger hunt type challenge with 20 prompts. You’re supposed to time yourself and see how fast you can find all of the books, but I’ll just be picking at the prompts over a couple of days when I have time to do so.”

I had a lot of fun with this. I was able to look at my entire bookshelf in a new light.

1. Do you have a book with a fox on the cover or part of the plot?


2. Do you have a book that was published the year you were born, or within a 3 year radius?

Meet Kirsten was published in 1986. I was born in 1988.

3. Do you have a book with music as a weapon or magic?


4. Do you have a series with mismatched covers?


5. Do you have a book with a shapeshifter?

Fallible Justice, Laura Laakso (ARC).

6. Do you have a book signed by the author?

Columbine, Dave Cullen. Cullen came to my school, Longwood University, in the spring of 2010 to speak and promote his book. I was lucky enough to interview him for Longwood’s student newspaper, The Rotunda.

7. Do you have a book with a mostly red cover?

Finale, Thomas Mallon.

8. Do you have a book between 287 – 306 pages?

True Stories of Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Kevin Dwyer and Jure Fiorillo – 249 pages.

9. Do you have a book with a main character who wears glasses?

More Than Enough: Claiming Space For Who You Are (No Matter What They Say), Elaine Welteroth

10. Do you have a book with a title that has the same number of letters as your first name?

No. Since I go by Laura Beth, apparently nine-letter titles are difficult.

11. Do you have a book with cybercrime/technology as a plot point?

The Alpha Drive, Kristen Martin.

12. Do you have book written in another language or translated to English?


13. Do you have a book written by an Asian author?

Everything I Never Told You, Celeste Ng.

14. Do you have a book with a moon on the cover?


15. Do you have an illustrated children’s book?

Thank You, Mr. Falker, Patricia Polacco.

16. Do you have a collection of fairy tales or myths?


17. Do you have a sci-fi/fantasy with an alliance between races?


18. Do you have a book with a narrow front cover? (paperback with a front cover that is slightly trimmed shorter/narrower than the rest of the book)


19. Do you have a book that includes the first chapter of the sequel?

The Hunger Games, Suzanne Collins.

20. Do you have a book with a broken spine?

The Diary of a Young Girl, Anne Frank. I’ve had my copy since middle school, I think.

I’m not tagging anyone for this challenge, but feel free to participate!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Tag #95: The Mid-Year Freak Out, 2020

This is a consensus cloud of Books Everyone Should Read. Image Credit: Imgur

I’ve seen this tag on several of my book blogging friends’ sites, so I figured I would jump in and give my two cents.

Best book you’ve read so far in 2020?

The Less People Know About Us: A Mystery of Betrayal, Family Secrets, and Stolen Identity. It’s going to be hard to knock this one off the top.

Best sequel of 2020 so far?

I haven’t read any sequels in 2020.

New release you haven’t read yet, but want to?

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes.

Most anticipated release of the second half of 2020?

Superman’s Not Coming: Our National Water Crisis and What We the People Can Do About It, Erin Brockovich (August 25, 2020)

Biggest disappointment?

Nothing so far, book-wise.

Biggest surprise?

Big Magic: How to Life a Creative Life, and Let Go of Your Fear. This was one of my Christmas gifts from Al. I hadn’t read any of Gilbert’s other books, although I was intrigued by Eat, Pray, Love. I read this book at the right time.

Favorite new (to me) author?

Neil Gaiman.

Newest fictional crush?

I’m not a fictional crush person anymore.

Newest favorite character?

Lettie Hempstock – The Ocean at the End of the Lane.

Book that made you cry?

Thank You, Mr. Falker.

Book that made you happy?

Big Magic.

Favorite book to movie adaptation you’ve seen this year?

I don’t think I’ve watched one yet. I do know that I want to watch Just Mercy after I finish reading Stevenson’s book. Wow.

Favorite review you’ve written this year?

The Less People Know About Us: A Mystery of Betrayal, Family Secrets, and Stolen Identity.

Most beautiful book you bought or received so far this year?

What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

  • Buried Colony (ARC)
  • Educated
  • Sketch
  • Smashed *Re-Read*
  • The Hate U Give
  • The Nickel Boys

Tag – You’re It!

I’m not tagging anyone specifically. If you feel led, do this tag. I had so much fun!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Blog Awards #29: The Vincent Ehindero Blogger Award

Thank you so much, Bhagyashree, for nominating me! Check our their blog,, for lots of fun and engaging posts.

Here’s the post where I was nominated: Vincent Ehindero Blogger Award

The Rules:

1. Thank the person that nominated you with a link to their blog

2. Make a post of the award (with photo) 

3. Post the rules 

4. Ask 5-10 questions of your choice

 5. Nominate 10-30 other bloggers (or more) and notify them. 

6. Follow Vincent Ehindero @ (to qualify for free blog promotion and shoutout) and more blogging opportunities.

Questions I Was Asked:

  1. Is there a cheesy movie you secretly love to watch?
  2. What is the funniest thing you have seen a stranger do?
  3. What would you choose; an act of chivalry with your favorite hero or a chance to read the personal diary of your most loved villain?
  4. Which is the one thing (item) you never share with anyone?
  5. What is the first thing that comes to your mind when you come across an amazing blog?
  6. Which is your spirit comic character?
  7. How would you describe your blogging journey so far in three words?

My Answers:

  1. Grease (1978) is one of my favorite cheesy movies.
  2. The funniest thing I’ve seen a stranger do is … I can’t remember anything significant.
  3. I would choose an act of chivalry with my favorite hero. I would love to do this alongside Captain America.
  4. One item I never share with anyone is my wedding rings. They’re probably too small for most people.
  5. When I come across an amazing blog, I want to read all the posts that have been published.
  6. My spirit comic character is Stargirl.
  7. Fun, challenging, inspirational.

Questions For My Nominees:

  1. What was the last thing you watched on YouTube or an equivalent video streaming site?
  2. If you could costume play (cosplay) as any character, which one would you pick, and why?
  3. What year did you start blogging?
  4. Which book would you buy, and give to a friend?
  5. What is the oldest thing you own?
  6. Do you have a dream animal that you want to have?
  7. If you could get paid a minimum of $60,000 per year, what job would you happily do or perform?
  8. What type of house would you build if everything was already paid for?
  9. What’s your favorite flower?

My Nominees:

  1. Kristian – Life Lessons Around The Dinner Table
  2. Sara – The Bibliophagist
  3. Destiny – Howling Libraries
  4. Phoenix – Penable
  5. Tiana – The Book Raven
  6. Ariel Lynn – Writing Radiation
  7. Caz – Invisibly Me
  8. Didi Oviatt
  9. kyera
  10. stoneronarollercoaster
  11. Book Princess Reviews

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂

Getting Personal #214: July Goals

Welcome back!

Here are my goals for the month of July:

  1. Participate in Camp NaNoWriMo, July 2020.
  2. Publish my updated TBR post.
  3. Re-organize the filing system.
  4. Finish cleaning out the cabinet above the oven.
  5. Finish de-cluttering the dining room buffet.
  6. Begin the binder of university newspaper articles for preservation.
  7. Send at least five cards, letters, and care packages.
  8. Continue preparations for P.E.O. Virginia State 2022 Convention.

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

Let me know in the comments!

Until the next headline, Laura Beth 🙂