Wednesday, April 5, 2017

March Highlights 2017

Yet another month in 2017 has come and gone. So much has occurred this March, so bear with me as I try to summarize. :)


~Summary~
Within the first few days of March, my mom began getting her dental work done, and while it will take several months yet to complete it, she is no longer in as bad of pain as she had been. Thank you for all the prayers!

Besides this, March started off with a friend coming to stay and watch our house while we took a trip to Shaver Lake in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The first day of the trip, however, my family and I spent in Bakersfield for the Christian Youth Film Society's 23rd Film Festival. This organization is the one that hosted the camp I attended last November and that has inspired me to begin my own movie-making journey with my youth group, some other friends, and family. It was a very formal event with a dinner and then the evening showing of the short movies that had entered the contest. I enjoyed my time and especially was glad to get to see some of my friends that I hadn't seen since the camp. Additionally, the couple who opened their home to us that night were involved in the festival and movie industry. (One was a judge of the movies, a producer, and an author!) Both were very sweet, and I loved spending time with them.

The following morning we headed up the mountain to Shaver, where we found several inches of snow that had fallen the previous day. It's a running joke with us and our friends up there that whenever my family comes—it snows. :) We spent the next few days sledding, cross-country skiing, and (in my case) catching up on some schoolwork.

Life slowed down a bit after the Shaver Lake trip, but was still busy as usual with youth groups, school, and other day-to-day events—not to mention the difficulties that daylight savings brings! During this time, I was also introduced to a book series, the Ranger's Apprentice, which I have really been enjoying. My church also had a breakfast last Sunday that was very fun, and I was thrilled to have one of my friends from another church visit with his family. Also, now that my family is all official HAM radio operators we have been building an antennae with one of the teachers of our class who also attends our church. In addition, one day this month my grandparents came down for a much-enjoyed visit. I've also gone on several fun horseback rides this month now that the ground is drying up a bit.

This last week has also been filled with birthdays every-other day. Literally! Last Sunday, Tuesday, Friday, and Saturday had a combined five birthdays of people I know, one of which was my sister. So, happy birthday to Samuel, Abigail, Cheyene, Nichole, and Ruben! I hope you all had wonderfully special days.

For my sister's birthday, my family returned to Hume Lake for the youth pastor's retreat. It was so different than when I went earlier in the year with my youth group and the campus was swarming with high schoolers! This time, there were very few people, no snow, and no structured "activities" per se. As a family we hiked, explored, took pictures, helped work on building the summer camp set, relaxed, played games, and did a hidden-transmitter hunt. I was excited to get lots of reading done as well. Of course, I have to mention that we played Apples to Apples—probably one of my favorite games. :) The weather went from clear and sunny to foggy, cloudy, rainy, and finally hail as we were leaving and visiting Sequoia National Park and the General Grant tree.

To top off my month, I was able to go to a friend's birthday party. I had a wonderful time hanging out with everyone there and I was glad to get to know some more people better. It was a party I won't soon forget! (All for good reasons. :D) Thanks for inviting me, Samuel!

~Reading~
March was a very successful month in terms of books. I'd recommend all of them. My total number of books? Nine. Total pages? 2,633. Not bad if I do say so myself. :)
  1. Out of Time: A Time to Die, Nadine Brandes (389 pages)
  2. Circle C Milestones: Courageous Love, Susan K. Marlow (186 pages)
  3. A Seven Wonders Novel: Shadow of Colossus, T. L. Higley (384 pages)
  4. Left to Die, Ivy Rose (116 pages)
  5. Martin Generations: Martin Hospitality, Abigayle Claire (386 pages)
  6. Circle C Adventures: Andrea Carter and the Long Ride Home (expanded edition), Susan K. Marlow (195 pages)
  7. Ranger's Apprentice: The Ruins of Gorlan, John Flanagan (249 pages)
  8. Ranger's Apprentice: The Burning Bridge, John Flanagan (262 pages)
  9. Ilyon Chronicles: Samara's Peril, Jaye L. Knight (464 pages)
Every single book on this list was wonderful! However, I would like to specifically mention a few.

I have been waiting for months to read A Time to Die, and it did not disappoint me. It was a different style than I'm used to, but I still thoroughly enjoyed the plot.

Courageous Love is likely my second favorite book out of the Circle C Milestones series, and while some spots broke my heart (and there was certainly a major aspect to it that I wasn't expecting), it was a wonderful book!

Abigayle Claire did a delightful job on her new novel, Martin Hospitality, and I had a hard time putting down the book! It was well written and I found myself in love with the characters and plot.

Thank you so much to Alex and Samuel for encouraging me to read the Ranger's Apprentice series and for loaning me the books! I'm loving it so far!

And last but not least, I have to mention Samara's Peril. How could I not? It was just as wonderful as the previous books in the series and I love the new twists!

~Writing~
Again, another slow month in terms of writing. I got less than 1000 words done on my Dragon Chronicles, but did accomplish some writing on other projects. I would have certainly liked to write more, but hopefully April will prove to be more profiting with Camp NaNo and such. (Any other campers out there?)

~Photography~
With all of the trips this month, I've had plenty of opportunity to get some cool photos. I'll limit them all to a few.

This is where we stayed at Shaver Lake.
The flags hanging over the ice skating rink at Hume Lake.
My sister at Hume Lake.
At Hume Lake.
The Bakersfield orchards.
This is where we skied at Tamarack Ridge.
Hume Lake
Some of the giant Sequoia trees.
On a ride. :)
~Great Quotes~
"It is always wise to look ahead, but difficult to look further than you can see." -Winston Churchill

 "Church isn't a museum for good people, it's a hospital for the broken." -Jefferson Bethke

"Negative emotions like loneliness, envy, and guilt have an important role to play in a happy life; they're big, flashing signs that something needs to change" -Gretchen Rubin


~Blog Posts~
To visit any of my posts in March that you might have missed, here are the links:

February Highlights 2017
"Tu" v. "Usted"
Dear Readers . . . .

I also got several more followers in March, so I'm really excited about that. Welcome and thank you for joining my little community!

Another thing I wanted to point out is the poll that I ran for a week toward the end of this month. I asked what sorts of posts I did that were your favorites, and the order of which you said you enjoyed them are as follows:
  1. Life Updates
  2. A tie between Photos and Writing
  3. A tie between Reading, Books, and God
  4. Blog Tags
  5. Writing Challenges
Thank you to everyone who voted. I appreciate your feedback!

Unfortunately I haven't found much time in March to read many other blog posts, but I'd like to let you know about a cool challenge that was posted on Andi's Blog by Libby to help grow your spiritual walk. Also, since the beginning of the year I've found and enjoyed reading multiple new blogs. Give the authors a hearty welcome to the blogosphere! You know who you are. ;)

Alas, we have come to the end of this post. I hope you enjoyed hearing about my month. Now it's your turn—tell me about yours!

16 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing sounds like a good month!! Riding horses is awesome. Do you just ride around your house or do you do events with your horses? I barrel race. In March my basketball team and I won our national basketball tournament and I got a new horse so it was a pretty good month:)

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    1. Wow! That is super cool, Kelsea! Sounds like a wonderful month. :) How many horses do you have now? I mostly ride around the house because we have forty acres, and sometimes on longer rides, but we don't compete. Both our horses have some form of injury. One has nevicular. But my sister's best friend rides in multiple events in rodeos. She's actually pretty good now. Congrats on both your new horse and basketball! That's quite an achievement! ;)

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    2. We have 7 horses and 1 Quarter pony. What breed of horses do you have? That sound like fun to ride on!! That's to bad about the injuries!! That's really cool that your friend rodeos!! Thanks you!! DO you play any sports?

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    3. Dream is a POA. (Pony of the Americas) So she's an appaloosa mare about 14 hands. Baylie is a Quarter Horse mare who used to be a champ cutting horse.

      And horseback riding is pretty much the extent of my sports. :)

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    4. That's really cool!!
      Well horseback riding is my favorite sports so that's awesome!!

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    5. Thanks! And I happen to agree with you on that! ;)

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  2. Wow! What a fun month!! Mine has just been full of schoolwork and teen drama, which is just dumb...lol.
    The Ranger's Apprentice is so good!

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    1. Yes, isn't it? I'm loving the series so far! So happy that my amazing friends recommended it to me! ;) Have you read the whole series?

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  3. You went to Shaver Lake? You may have passed my house. We live pretty close to there :)
    I really want to read A Time to Die and Left to Die.
    MARTIN'S HOSPITALITY IS AMAZING <3
    You used the church isn't a museum quote too :)
    I should have a March Wrap up on my blog soon for you to read!

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    1. We go to Shaver Lake a few times a year. Do you live near Natalie, because I know the general area where she lives.

      I'd highly recommend both those books! And yes, MARTIN HOSPITALITY!!! It's so cool that you got to beta for Abi. She's such a talented writer.

      Yep, it's a great quote! And I'll look forward to reading your post. :)

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    2. Sadly it's been about six years since I've lived near Natalie. I live 5 hours away from her now :(
      The post is up! :)

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    3. Oh, that's too bad. :( I saw it and will read it as soon as I get a chance!

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  4. Awesome Post Bethany! It was fun to read! I love spring, don't you?

    I read a whole lot. Do you have any Christian based series or books you could recommend? I don't read anything with any type of witchcraft, or such, and there is such a limited supply! I have read pretty much the whole bookshelf of clean books at my local library. Always open for suggestions!

    Thanks for having the blog Bethany! I't so much fun to read!

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    1. Ah ha! You just made my day with that question because you asked the right person for recommendations! Would you mind sending me an email with the "contact me" gadget up top so that I can email you a few of my favorites?

      You are so welcome! Thanks for letting me know how much you are enjoying it!

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  5. Oh yeah, and Bethany, I finally set up my blog. It's a fiction character that I created. I post as if she was making diary entries. It's going to be short stories, book reviews, thoughts on life, music
    ideas and other random stuff, but I really am enjoying it. I hope you'll visit it. It's called Geoturtle.com. Has nothing to do with turtles, but I liked that domain. I am using wordpress, so I don't have a follow button, but if you subscribe you will get notified every time I post something new. If you are interested you can also post it on your blog so some of your reader might be interested. Thanks!

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    1. I subscribed! Thanks for letting me know! It looks really interesting!

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Bethany R.