Purposefully Taking A Break: July 20, 2016

Hey there, ROWers and others!

Do you have any special summer traditions?

For the last six Julys, my daughter, son, and I have been attending Unschoolers Rock the Campground at Pinewoods Lodge in Plymouth, MA. It’s a chance to see friends from across the Northeast, and sometimes further.

We’ll be leaving tomorrow morning and returning on Sunday evening for what might be our last year, depending on when we make the move to Oregon. It’s a special time, and writing and writing-things aren’t high on my priority list for the next few days.

I’m taking a break. Since I already live upstate*, I guess I’ll have to go east. At any rate, my Sunday update may be late, and will almost certainly be sparse.

Are you fond of camping?

Other outdoor pursuits?

Or are you more the indoor type?

*gratitious Hamilton reference.

This post includes the July goals I interacted with during this session. It’s a streamlined overview of where my energy, time, and focus were. For full versions of my July, Round Three, and 2016 goals, check the links below!


  • CampNaNoWriMo #2: The IDIC Romance: Finish “Marriage of the Magi” (to the “Big Reveal”). Word-High July Challenge: Write 31 flash fiction stories using Filipino word prompts and my “The Definition of Emotion” theme (about 333 words each).Marriage of the Magi” past the Big Reveal up to 18,872 words. – I may keep going with it. Story 21/31 complete.


  • #WordHighJuly: Revise all 31 stories prior to posting. Story 7/31 in progress. I’m going to set this aside and post my stories in August. I simply don’t have enough July to go around, at this point.

Blogging/Social Media:

  • Answer blog comments and make visits, at least twice weekly. 1/2 so far.

  • Interact on Twitter at least once a day, four times each week. If you want to chat with me there; I’m @ShanJeniah. 1/4; just for a few minutes. Might not get to 4 while camping; on the other hand, I might. =)

  • ROW80: Revise, polish, and submit Round 3 Sponsor Post. Keep visits and updates current. Yup. I think I visited everyone in the linky list. Might take a bit to get through the Wednesday list, though, as internet will be sporadic, and my focus will be elsewhere.

  • Maintain email at below 123 messages; making good use of folders. Yeah…No. Between homeschool reporting, write-ins, and getting ready for camping, I’m up over 300. Might not get to many this weekend, either, due to trees and water and sunshine and friends…

  • Share my 31 #WordHighJuly story posts. 5/31 posts shared. Need to write a post explaining that I’ll be sharing my stories in August, because I just can’t fit revising and sharing into what’s left of this month, unless being impossible to live with was on my agenda – and it’s not.


  • Homeschool Administration: Complete all pending paperwork (quarterlies; attendance; EOY documentation prep.) End of Year test: reviewing materials and procedures ongoing. Miah engaged in test prep: reviewing Khan Academy mathematics videos. Narrative assessment form in progress. Completed Annalise’s Second and Third Quarter Reports (sans attendance. That leaves only Miah’s and the dull-as-dust attendance tabulation to complete all the back paperwork. Added to Annalise’s Flickr portfolio. School district still behind on last year’s IHIP (determination was due 5/25; I’ll notify new superintendent next week, because she may not know.)
  • Continue decluttering/beautification projects; in home and/or yard, four days weekly. Continue making improvements to our home and our quality of life; remind/support the kids in the pitching-in they’ve agreed to do on my Accomplice’s days off. 3/4. The rest of the week, it will be keeping our campsite tidy, as I won’t be at home.
  • Cancel Big Fish and Audible subscriptions. Big Fish gives us 180 days to use game credits if we want them, but our gamer boy likes Steam, these days, and I have lots of Cake Mania already!


  • Continue planning/ attending outings (personal and family) as desired. Preparations for Unschoolers Rock the Campground in full swing. Write-in for me; bottle return with my girl.

  • NNWM local group: Participate in CampNaNo write-ins Tuesdays and Sundays.2/2/. I will skip Sunday’s write-in. I tried to do that last year, but I had no focus left, so this year, I’ll stay home. 
  • My beloveds: One on one time with each, doing something of value to us both, each week. Canoodling. Conversation. Bottle returning.


  • Write in Abundance and #onegoodcup journals/and meditate five times each week. 2/5 journals; 1/5 meditation. This will be an easier prospect in the pines. Tent life is very meditative, for me.

  • Moderate activity: At least 45 minutes, 5 times a week. Use my timer. 3/5. Camping preparation is very good for my activity level; actually camping is even more so.

Kait Nolan’s  ROW80  

The Writing Challenge That Knows You Have a Life!

See other participants’ goals updates!


  1. I love camping, hiking, rock-climbing, and mountaineering. My family has a campground in my uncle’s memory in Seneca Rocks, WV, though I only went camping there in the summer of ’93, when I was thirteen. Apparently I was the only one who slept through a bear coming through our campground in the middle of the night.

    On my second visit to Colorado in July 2001, for my maternal grandparents’ 50th anniversary (actually two months before their real anniversary), we stayed at the Bald Pate Inn in Estes Park. On our way to climb the Twin Sisters Peak, I had to go back to the cabin to change into a bigger part of shorts (at the time a size 14, which was so mortifying to my 21-year-old self), and by the time I got back, everyone else had started the climb. I ended up climbing the wrong Sister, and tripped and fell down a hill at the top. I climbed back down the mountain with my right knee cut open and bleeding in the July heat, and found out everyone assumed I’d stayed in the cabin instead of taking the wrong fork in the road. My uncle was really impressed at how I was hiking and climbing again just a few days later, in spite of still having a hurt knee.

    • I don’t do as much camping as I’d like, these days, but that might happen more once we move west. When Jim and I were first together, in the years before we had children, we camped very regularly.

      I didn’t grow up camping, but I wish i had.

      Climbing the wrong Sister is a great story. My best one is getting in an argument and separating from my husband on the Grandview Trail at the Grand Canyon, then walking into an agave spine on a sharp switchback. It punctured me right under the kneecap, and bled profusely (down into my boot, soaking my sock.) It hurt for weeks!

      We finally reunited and made peace, but we were both out of water by that point, and dehydration is a very real risk. When it started to rain, we lapped drops off leaves and puddles that gathered in rock depressions, then made it to the top just in time for a crack of lightning very near where we were heading to our truck, which we’d left at the trailhead.

      Happy to have survived that hike! +)

  2. We bought a tent a couple years ago, and haven’t used it yet. I am determined that this will be the year we finally start camping. I have this dream of camping all over the U.S.–under the redwoods in California is up there at the top of the list. But first we need to try a few places closer to home. Enjoy your trip!

  3. When I was a teen, I spent a lot of time swimming, biking, and horseback riding. I have good memories of the few times my family went camping. When I got older, I began to spend more time indoors. Now nature makes me itch, and Texas summers have become so hot that it’s no pleasure to be outside. So I hide in the air conditioning.
    Enjoy your time off. The goals will be there when you get back.

  4. Enjoy your break and enjoy the outdoors. If I lived in a climate conducive to the outdoors, I would never come inside. Instead, I live where we have less than three months of decent weather, and right now, even though it is warm enough outside, it is storming. We are going camping in two weeks and I CANNOT wait to spend five days OUTDOORS.

  5. We usually go camping with my dad and stepmom at least for a weekend every summer, sometimes up to a week. Haven’t heard anything from them about doing that this year. I hope you have a good time on your trip, and it’s refreshing for you.

  6. I know what you mean about not having enough July to go around! This has been a very busy summer so far.

    I am both indoorsy and outdoorsy. It usually takes people for me to go outdoors, though.

    I hope you have a wonderful time! Our homeschool group just started an annual retreat a couple years ago, but we haven’t been able to go. We won’t be able to go this year, either. Maybe some year.

    • Indoorsy-outdoorsy – yup, that’s me, too!

      The first time we did this event, Lise was just days into being 6, and Miah was wrapping up being 8. Seems like a very, very long time ago!

      This year, they’re both officially old enough to romp through the campground, and my boy is nearly a head taller than I am, and still getting taller!

      It’s a great tribe, and no one minds if I want to hang out at my own campsite – lots of us are the introverted extrovert or extroverted introvert type!

      I hope you can give your homeschool retreat a chance someday…you might love it!

  7. Is it too weird to say that, yet, I’m fond of camping, but I don’t particularly want to actually DO it? I’ve been camping many times, though not so much in recent years. It’s not as fun as it used to be. I do not sleep, and end up dozing through everything and feeling irritable.

    I think I’d like camping if we could do it luxury style, like in an RV…maybe we’ll try that someday!

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