May 2016 in Review

What I Focused on in May: 

1. Editing and re-writing When Life Hands You Lymes 
2. Traveling – I was gone for two thirds of the month 
3. Long distance walking 
4. Getting back into the swing of things at home

Birthday Challenge and Dream List Update 

9. Walk 24 miles in two days (in a row) {Completed twice!}
12. Go to bed at 10:30 or before 24 nights (not in a row) {15 nights – Completed}
13. Write a monthly review on my blog within 5 days of the end of the month whenever internet is available {8 months}
14. Blog my 3 (or more) top goals for each month within 5 days of the beginning of each month whenever internet is available {7 months}
15. Write 24 book reviews {10 – Completed}
24. Read out loud for 24 hours {2}


Reading Update

Fiction: 7
Non-Fiction: 4
Reviews: 10 
Audio Books: 4? (fiction)


Nights Gone: 21
New Countries or States: None 
Spent time in: Mexico and Colorado 

May Goals 

1. Go to bed by 10:30 fifteen times {Yes! Actually, I might have been one day off, but I think I accomplished it.}
2. Get up by 6:30 fifteen times {Yes!}
3. Walk or jog 100 miles {Yes! Around 110 miles in all.}
4. Read & Review four non-fiction books {Yes!}
5. Get WLHYL ready to send to beta readers and send it out {Yes!}
6. Stick to my healthy eating for at least 29 days {Haha, No. This was before I found out I was going to Colorado and then I decided to ditch this goal.}

What I’ve Been Learning

A lot of the times if I set my mind to something, I’ll be able to get it done, even if it’s difficult and takes a lot of time. Therefore, I need to make sure I’m deciding to do the most helpful things in life so I’m not wasting my time and energy on things that aren’t important. I also need to pace myself well and live life with balance. (And that, folks, is one of the most recurring lessons in my life.) 

The countries I “visited” in the Around the World series were DominicaBosnia and Herzegovina, and Montserrat. Although I was focused on WLHYL at the time and so didn’t study the countries as much as I normally do, I still learned a lot. I especially enjoyed researching Bosnia because I have friends who lived there for a few years and have heard lots of stories about their life there. 

Several difficult events happened to people I’m close to this month and pondering the fragility of life and praying for my friends helped bring life and purpose into a more clear focus. I was reminded that when it all boils down, what we do for God is what really counts, and we’ll be held accountable for the time we waste. 

With the books I read this month, I was reminded of how important it is to love people. Life isn’t about impressing or accomplishing or even about changing the course of history. Life is about bringing glory to God and being His hands and feet and sharing His love and truth. That’s hard (especially when I’m not feeling like being around people), but keeping that focus in mind and asking God for His help does wonders. 

As far as writing goes, I’ve been learning to focus on the end result when I’m feeling completely overwhelmed and to not let myself get bogged down with the here and now. It’s also been helpful to look back and think about the reasons why I started writing in the first place. Writing isn’t always easy. It doesn’t always feel glamorous (haha) or special or even needed, but stepping back to get the big picture is important and helps keep me going. 

May! It’s one of the most wonderful months of the year and has always been close to my favorite (coming in after September and October). I’m thrilled to have been able to be home part of this month and spent many hours cutting grass, walking along the road, and working in my office with my windows open, enjoying the delightful cadence of May

Going to Colorado was kinda a last-minute trip for me, but I’m so very thankful I got to go. Where else would I rather spend four days in May? Visiting the top of Pikes Peak and zip lining were two of the highlights of not only the week, but also the month. 

And of course being home. Ah, home is so utterly delightful. I’m incredibly grateful for the amazingly delightful place where I live and all the people I get to share the every-day adventure of life with. 

One of my biggest accomplishments this month was getting to do a ton of walking during the first half of the month. Not only did I walk twenty-four miles in two days, but then a week later I walked over twenty-six miles without stopping. Now that was rewarding. 

And, last but not least of all, I sent When Life Hands You Lymes out to beta readers. That was something I focused on a lot and worked pretty hard on. I’ve gotten some good feedback back from the readers and I’m hoping to hear from the rest of them within the next couple of weeks. 
* * * 
What did y’all do in May? I’d be delighted to hear!

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