Monthly Review: May 2022

Hello, friends!

Today, I bring you my May 2022 Review! Once again, we’ll be going over the three categories, Life, Writing, and Reading! I hope you enjoy. =D

**Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you buy something off of my link, I will get a small commission for advertising, with no extra cost to you and you get to support this blog for free!**

Writing

May was a HUGE month for me writing-wise. I finished my first full-length novel at around 52 thousand words which is beyond exciting! I wrote it in less than thirty-one days which was a fun challenge. I know I still have a long way to go but this is a big accomplishment for me.

All other writing except blog posts basically got pushed aside since I was writing nearly 2-thousand-words every day, but I have another exciting update too which most of you already know. At the beginning of May, my email list hit 100 subscribers! (Well 107 now.)

I already sent a big thank you email out, but I’m going to say it again. Thank you all so much for reading my writing and supporting me! I appreciate you so much. ❀

I’m planning to do something to celebrate still–I’m not totally sure yet, but it will be exclusive to my email list, so if you’re not signed up yet, I’d love to have you! ❀

rEADiNG

I *kind of* failed in reading this month. I spent so much time writing that I hardly had any free time to do much reading, plus, I can’t seem to find any good books to read that I’ll enjoy and that is clean. But I did read some, a grand total of three books. πŸ˜›

I read Sugar and Ice by Kate Messner which was a very sweet story, and I enjoyed it.

Then I reread the sixth and seventh books of the Main Street Series by Ann M. Martin, along with listening to the ones before in the series on audio. (I love audiobooks if you haven’t noticed. :D)

And the reading stopped there. I’m hoping to read more this summer and I definitely will since some of my writing friends and I are doing a reading challenge. I’m hoping for thirty books. We’ll see if I end up finding enough to read. That could be a problem.

LIFE

Life-wise, May was rough but there were some good things too. (And the hard things weren’t necessarily bad. . . they were just hard.)

I was sick twice, and currently have allergies. *shakes head* I hope the rest of you didn’t spend most of your month sick.

BUT despite being sick a lot, May was a gorgeous month, seeing all of the flowers bloom and the woods turn green was definitely amazing. I love spring, don’t you? I especially loved this beautiful dogwood tree, looking out my window and seeing it all bright and full of blooms made me so happy. But after about a week, all of the blooms died. Oh well, I’ll have to wait until next spring. But I got tons of pictures of it so it won’t be forgotten. πŸ˜€

We planted 500 trees (and some bushes.)! That was a lot of work but fun too. Click here to see the post I made with more photos.

I did a lot of art during May, being sick gives you plenty of time to do art and write. πŸ˜‚ Most of it was in my bullet journal since I ran out of room in my last bujo. I got this one off of Amazon and I love it! It’s a lot nicer than my last bujo so I’m happy to have it. πŸ™‚

My younger siblings and I did a super fun photoshoot (Well two of them actually! One with just the girls and then one with everyone) and that was a blast.

All in all, May was a hard month, but I learned a lot and had some fun.

Anyhow, that wraps it up!

How did your May go? What was one high and one low from your month?

Planting 500 trees {Lots of photos}

Hello hello, my wonderful friends!

A few weeks ago, in May, my family and I planted 500 trees in one of the areas of our property. Some friends from our church also came out and gave us a hand — It was super fun but also very tiring. And in a few years, we’ll have plenty of pine trees. We also planted so River Birch and Oak trees too, but it may be 40 years before those actually look like something. πŸ˜‚

Enjoy some fun tree planting adventures!

**Note: Some of the photos might be cropped // edited weirdly due to avoid posting people’s faces. Thanks for putting up with that!**

Before we planted, the area had to be cleared from other trees, most of them were either dead or dying. There were also boxelder trees which my parents are not necessarily fans of because they are kind of ugly. Thankfully, the skid-steer makes it go a lot faster. (But my dad and brothers did most of the work by hand because the skid-steer belongs to David, a friend of my parents and he brought it out to help towards the end of the project)

The pine tree seedlings don’t actually look much like trees. More like twigs with little leaves on them. :’D

This picture is a bit over-edited, but I really like it.

After a while, the kids, mainly the boys, started to get impatient and began having running races. They stuck these flags, which are used to show where the trees are, all over the place. I wouldn’t be surprised to find another one around somewhere random. πŸ˜‚ This one was on the driveway.

Ah, I love this picture of everyone working! It was a fun day, and we are super thankful for our friends who helped us! ❀

All of the trees were being stored in the root cellar until we could plant them so they wouldn’t dry out or get too warm. They need to be kept cool until they are planted. We don’t really use the cellar for anything. . .though we probably should since it’s really nice. When we first bought the house, Mercy, a friend of mine, and I all cleaned it out. So it’s just an empty dark place now. It has a very long story that I made up about it, and it’s also kind of creepy. (Comment if you wanna know the story — Please note that my 9 year-old-self made it up so it’s very wild and crazy. πŸ˜‰ πŸ˜‚)

We used a dibble bar to dig the holes so they wouldn’t be as wide as a hole as a normal spade would make. There was a great difference in the dibble bars we had. They were loaned to us by the DNR. Some of them were very pointed and worked great. However, some of them were flat and my mom started calling them a pointless shovel. The flat ones did not work nearly as well as the pointed ones and we did really wonder whose idea flat dibble bars were. We also used whatever other digging objects we had because there were a lot of people, a lot of holes to dig, and a lot of trees that need to be planted.

The dirt, in some places, was really dry and hard to dig into. Twice, we had to move to different spots for our holes because we hit rock!

Dad had started planting before we got down there. He was already very busy! (Note: he has a dibble bar.)

Once you put the tree into the ground, you had to form a sort of rim around it to keep the water in the hole so the trees would get the maximum amount of water to the roots. Many hands make light work!

It was SUCH a gorgeous day out! Later, it got cloudy and less nice, but in the morning, the sun was so bright and the sky was incredibly blue.

We were marking the spots where the trees were supposed to go with spray paint, and a random wood pole to get them measured right. The trees needed to be 5-7 feet apart.

Umm, yes, that is a shoe on the stump. I don’t know how it got there or why it was there, but it was apparently.

Dad borrowed a tank from my grandparents to water the trees. We had to drive the ranger up to the house and fill it with a hose. The younger kids thoroughly enjoyed moving the water from the tank, to a five gallon bucket that we used for tapping trees and then watering the trees.

Luke accidentally spray-painted his hand while marking the spots for the trees. Thankfully, it all came off after he rubbed it in the grass and then rinsed it with water.

This tree ended up getting a bit overwatered. Hopefully, it will grow fine. Otherwise, I may have killed it. πŸ˜› πŸ˜‚

We shall end with a picture of the yard (while yard might be a stretch on the word. . .I don’t know what to call it. :P) with plenty of flags in the ground with little twigs in the ground next to them. Okay, okay, fine, seedlings. Plenty of seedlings in the ground. πŸ˜‚

Have you ever planted a tree? What was your favorite photo from this post? Do you have a root cellar?

Thank you for reading!

Spring Photography

Hello, my friends!

I have lots of springy photos for today’s post! Spring has taken its time arriving here, we got some snow in April, and then it’s been cold and rainy most days. But it’s finally starting to warm up and starting to feel actually like spring.

Anyway, enough of an intro. πŸ˜€ Enjoy a bit of spring!!

Aww, I love the little water droplets on these little green plant. They look almost like little crystals. πŸ™‚

Hehe, I was asking Mom about ideas to describe this plant and she put it as “A budding weed”. . . Anyhow, for some odd reason, its shape vaguely reminds me of a rose. πŸ˜…

Chewy, one of our dogs, came with me while I took a lot of these pictures. She did not agree with pausing for me to take a picture of her, she just kept running in circles. Finally, Mercy came to the rescue and got her to sit still. These all make me laugh, especially the third picture. :’D

The trees are always beautiful to watch bloom; especially this cherry blossom tree! πŸ’› 😊

A friend of my Mom gave her all of these solar light bulbs, and for some reason, I love taking pictures of them. They are just so clear and still which is one reason I love them and then add in the tree with all of its tiny green buds. It’s perfect in my opinion. 😁

My mom’s friend also gave her these lovely lanterns; I love the woods and trees behind them. 😊

I love the lighting in this picture!! Along with the moss on the rock next to it. The actual plant isn’t very pretty but I love the rest of the picture.

This is more of the moss I showed above. For some reason, this reminds me of some sort of fairy village or something like that. :’D

The leaves on this plant are really neat in my opinion.

This is just another really pretty leaf picture that I too! I love all of the little “designs” on this leaf. It’s so interesting to see how different yet how similar all of the leaves are.

Because of our very slow start to spring, most of the flowers haven’t bloomed yet. But, we have plenty of these daffodils! I already shared pictures of them in my last post–And I may have almost reached the point where I’ve taken too many pictures of them. . .

A few days ago, we got a lot of rain and thunderstorms. After it rained, we went out to the creek and played since it was running really fast and hard. That was a lot of fun! I love all of these rocks making little waterfalls in the water.

I took this picture a few days later when it was bright and sunny! Look at how much clearer it is. It’s fun to see how the water changes during the different seasons and weather.

Ahh, some little waterfalls. This is part of the creek dam that my younger siblings built a while ago.

The bridge with all the green and the creek reminds me of something from a movie–Last time I walked across this bridge I almost fell off but thankfully, Mercy rescued me. (Apparently, Mercy is very heroic in this post :D)

Oooh, I love all the green and the rocks in this picture, and the creek of course. It’s so peaceful and quiet over there. (Except for yesterday, when there were all of these birds down there picking worms from under the leaves. That was really fun to watch but I didn’t have my camera so no pictures. 😦 )

Mmm, this mushroom is actually pretty in my opinion! I never really thought that fungi could be pretty but I love the gold mushroom against the rustic-looking wood. ❀

My younger siblings found a caterpillar a few days ago when we were walking. It’s so tiny and fluffy.

What was your favorite picture from this post? What’s your favorite thing about spring? What do you think about the description of “A budding weed”?

Thank you so much for reading and have a lovely day, friends!!

Photography Challenge: collab with Alicia

Hello, my friends!

For today’s post, I have a collab I am super excited about! A few weeks ago, I asked Alicia @ Alicia Marentette if she wanted to do a collab, and she agreed – We decided on doing a photography challenge where come up with a list of things to photograph, and share the photos! So that’s what I will be sharing today.

To get started, here’s a list of all the things we took photos of.

Time for the real photos now.

1. Spring

To be honest, I had a really hard time finding a photo in this category. Spring is not here yet; it’s been in the 30s all week, and it was hard finding something springy. But then, one of my younger siblings found this little bird’s nest on the ground. I definitely think of seeing birds building their nests as part of spring.

2. fLOWERs

Ooh, I love these flowers! It’s actually an old photo because as I mentioned above, we do not have any flowers blooming yet. It’s so pretty though!


3. Sunset

Mmm, this sunset is gorgeous. Sunsets are some of my favorite things as you have probably already figured out by now – I love the clouds in this one.

4. morning SKY

This is honestly one of my absolute favorite photos ever. ❀ It was such a beautiful (And early) morning to be out on the beach to see the sunrise. And the trees too.

5. Animal

This is from one of trips to Lutsen a few years ago. It was really neat being able to go that close to this seagull so we could get a picture. He was just sitting there on the railing while we were up looking at the view, and I just snapped a photo.

6. Colorful

I wasn’t sure what to use for this one; then my Mom had the idea to take the kids out to our monkey line that we all got our birthdays last summer and get a picture there. I love how it turned out, and it is definitely very colorful.

7. Clouds

I always love looking at clouds – One of my favorite things to do is just to lay down in the grass and stare up at the clouds. (When the grass is dry, and there are no siblings with soccer balls nearby that is.)

8. Books

I just got some new books from the library, and they were perfect to grab a picture of! Have you read any of these books?

9. RAIN

I’m not sure if this one counts. . .I realized too late that I didn’t have any photos of rain, so this was the closest I could come. It’s a mud puddle from when all of the snow melted and it rained, so I think it counts?

10. Roads

Ahh, I love this one! These two roads are glorious in the morning when the sun’s shining, and that morning was no different. I love the shadows especially.

12. Peaceful

Kook at water droplets coming off the wave. And even though I’ve said this multiple times about the photos in this post, I love this – Especially the icy/crystal look to the wave.

13. Artsy

I had a really hard time deciding what to use for this – Finally, after coming up with a bunch of ideas, but none of them seeming like they would fit, I decided to look up some inspiration. I found this photo of the ice on our creek melting, and it seemed to the fit the “artsy” look. What do you think? Is it artsy?

14. Water

I have so many favorite pictures of water that it took me a while to decide. But I picked this one because I love the lighthouse and the bridge.

15. Indoor

I LOVE the shadows and the light here.. One afternoon I noticed the hydrangeas shadows from the outside shining through the window, it was so pretty! This is probably my favorite indoor photo I’ve taken.

And that’s it for the day! Did you enjoy seeing all of these different photos? Which one was your favorite?

Before you go, make sure to check out Alicia’s post here.

Have a beautiful day, friends!

Monthly Review: February 2022

**Note: My newsletter once again decided to send while I was still working on sending it and I didn’t want the email to be sending you all to a broken link which is why this is out so early. I’ll get back to my normal schedule next week. Thanks for putting up with me and my tech problems. =D**

Hello, friends!

Happy March! I thought it might be fun if I did a post to recap February so that’s what we will be doing today. πŸ˜€

Writing

We are going to start with a update on my writing and how it’s going this year.

Well, I am almost finished with my outline for one of my projects The Bensons (Title subject to change) and I am super excited to start writing that.

I’ve also been working on a project I am co-authoring with my friend, Anna, which we are almost done with which is super exciting! It’s a novelette that we’ve been working on for a few months now, and we’re both really excited to be finished it. It’s one of my favorites out of all the stories I’ve written.

I’ve also been working on writing an article for The Young Writer Blog which has been fun, and a lot of work too. But I’m excited to get published on there.

That’s about it for what I’ve been writing. =D

READING

I’ve read a lot this month! More than I thought I would. Overall this year, I’ve read 18 books which makes me happy. I’ve enjoyed having more time to read and reading more.

A few of my favorites from this month. . .

The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare

I’ve actually read this one twice this year, once right at the beginning, and then I read it again a few days ago. Don’t ask me why I like rereading things so much, but I do. πŸ˜†

The Giver by Lois Lowry


I finished this one in a day. πŸ˜… I really enjoyed the story, which suprised me because I don’t usually like books that are dystopian or sci-fi. The ideas it suggested were definitely uncomftarble, but overall, I loved it.

Needle and Thread by Ann M. Martin (Book #2 in the Main Street series)

Ahh, I love this series and book so much. The characters and everything about it. . .it’s such a sweet story, yet it’s so sad.

The Holly’s Heart Collection by Beverly Lewis

This is one of my favorite series of all time. I’ve read it at least 5 times. Anyway, I loved reading it again this month.

That wraps up what I’ve been reading this month.

Doing

And I have done a lot this month, some of which I posted about it, and some of it I haven’t. A few random photos from this month, and what I have done. . .

We went skiing six times in February which was super fun. Once we were able to go night skiing and that was awesome.

We’ve had so many gorgeous sunsets this month. :’D I love watching the sun set. ❀

My brother got a drone for Christmas! He enjoyed flying it around (and trying to fly it at us. πŸ˜‚).

My younger brothers, Luke, and Levi, had the brilliant idea to go play in the mud behind our house. And they convinced me to come along. . .Let me just say my boots were nearly spotless before we started. But that was definitely a highlight from this month.

While we were playing in the mud, they also decided that it would be a good idea to try to go sledding in it. And they picked me as the first contestant. Lucky me. :’D

Ooh, there’s a rainbow in this puddle! Getting all muddy was definitely worth all the fun we had that afternoon.

There’s been a lot of different weather this month, from the weather in the 50s to below zero some days. We got two snowstorms and have had a lot of sunshine. I’ve enjoyed having the nicer weather after so much winter.

This is my science. =D

I’ve done so much school the past few weeks. I know I am going to appreciate getting done early but it seems like a lot right now.

We decorated cupcakes twice this month. Once for a family celebration, and then again for an activity at Church.

I’ve also been working on my bullet journal, and I finished my 2022 spreads (I’m hoping to do a post sharing them soon!) and my March spreads. I’ve really enjoyed bullet journaling so far.

I put together an art binder (I need to come up with a better name) for all my art supplies. (I’m also planning a post about that soon but here’s a sneak peek.)

How did your February go? Did you do anything special?