Camp Nano Washed Out

Well, technically, Camp didn’t wash out.  I did.  It’s not for a lack of trying, mind you.  I’ve had much on my plate with work, with running after Hallie and helping her (post-surgery), running after the animals, mowing and working in the yard, cooking, cleaning, washing, going to and fro physical therapy and the list goes on.

I did manage to scribble roughly 5,000 words, not quite reaching the goal I’d set for myself of 10,000.  BUT!  I am still squeezing in time to write, even if it’s for a measly 15-30 minutes a day.  Hey, something is better than nothing, right?  Right.

I sort of messed myself up a bit to be honest.  I started back on my work of non-fiction that I started in October of last year and it’s like I had to force myself and found it to be more of a chore than fun.  I cannot write like that.  It has to be fun.  Don’t misunderstand.  Sometimes you have to glue your butt to the chair or couch or bed or porch swing or wherever it is you want to write and actually put in the time to write.  Something.  Anything.  Just to get yourself started.

Write the voices that are talking (screaming) in your head

But to sit there in angst with 100 other thoughts running through your head of what you need or want to be doing rather than having the want to sit there and write.  Well…  I cannot write like that.  It has to be fun.  After you sit there and force yourself to write, if the imagination and words are not flowing by the end of the first 30 minutes, it’s not worth it.  So I pulled away and thought to myself, “Self, while I realize finishing this book is important, you have all these voices in your head screaming at you to work on their story.  How can you focus on something completely opposite when you have your fantastical characters screaming at you to write their story?  Writing is writing.  As long as you are writing, you’re getting the job done.  But you need to listen to those voices in your head.  Listen to them.  Write their story.”

Then, I had a dream, woke up at 0:dark:30 after the dream, couldn’t go back to sleep, got up out of bed and wrote.  It was an epiphany.  I have started books 1 and 2 in a series and this dream was the story before book 1.  A new twist!  Sort of like The Hobbit movie coming out after all the Lord of the Rings movies.  It’s the back story before the story.  So, I have to say, I was a bit psyched to get up oh so early to write out everything I could remember from the dream.  And it’s funny.  The more time I spent writing it, the more details sprang up and I started remembering more of the dream, the colors, the sounds in the background, the smells, the rooms and changing environments, the action, the drama, what the characters where saying and how they were saying them.  Writing is such a wonderful trip!!  Hearing, seeing, feeling and smelling the story in your mind and writing it out is like biting into a juicy sweet peach, breathing in that heavenly fresh summery fragrance, and having the nectar drip and run down your chin and arm while savoring every last delicious bite.

If you write at all, then be proud

If you did not reach your goal for Camp Nano, don’t beat yourself up about it.  If it got you started writing and you continue every day to write, then be proud.  The real goal here is to write, to create, to spill your soul or imagination or dreams onto paper or laptop or whatever the tool is of your choosing.  But to write.  That is the goal.  So do that.  And be pleased with yourself.  Someone said once, ‘it’s not the destination, it’s the journey.’  And that is a very true statement.  The journey is the fun part, the adventure and, sometimes, the distraction from real every day life.  It’s my means of escape, though I don’t escape for long, as I love my life and the people in it.  Still, a little mini-mental-vacation is always welcome.  To imagine worlds and stories in your mind — those are some of the best vacation adventures.

So, maybe I didn’t wash out.  I started.  I wrote.  I’m writing daily.  And I will finish it eventually.  And so will you.

And if you did reach your goal for Camp, I applaud you!!  And if you didn’t reach your goal, and, still, you wrote, I applaud you, as well!  Wooooo-hooooo!!!  *clap*clap*clap*clap*wolf whistle*  Whoop!  Whoop!!

Moses, with the Power of God, Parted The Sea

Exodus 14 (paraphrased)

The Lord told Moses to have the Israelites camp out by the sea.  Pharoah will think they’re wandering around in confusion, hemmed in by the desert.  God said, “I will harden Pharoah’s heart, and he will pursue them.”  What do you think this means?  He forced Pharoah’s heart to be hardened?  Anyway, when the king of Egypt realized the people had fled, he changed his mind and wanted them back under his thumb.

Pharoah took 600 chariots along with all the other chariots of Egypt, with officers over all of them.  All Pharoah’s horses and chariots, horsemen and troops overtook the Israelites as they camped by the sea.  When the Israelites saw the Egyptians approaching, they were terrified and cried out to the Lord.

They accused Moses of tricking them and bringing them to the desert to die.  They claimed to be better off where they were, serving the Egyptians than to die in the desert.  Moses told them to not be afraid, stand firm and the Lord would fight for them.  Then God asked Moses, “Why are you crying out to me?  Tell the Israelites to move on.”

He told Moses to raise his staff and stretch out his hand over the sea to divide the water so the Israelites can go through the sea on dry ground.  How freakin’ cool would it be to have seen that?!  God said he’d harden the hearts of the Egyptians so they’d follow in after them.  Then the angel of God, who’d been traveling in front of Israel’s army, withdrew and went behind them.  The pillar of cloud also moved from in front and stood behind them, coming between the armies of Egypt and Israel.  Throughout the night, the cloud brought darkness to the one side and light to the other side; so neither went near the other all night long.  So cool!!  I don’t think I knew this.

Moses did as God asked and the sea was divided, the Israelites went through the sea on dry ground, with walls of water on the left and right.  The Egyptians pursued.  During the last watch of the night the Lord looked down from the pillar of fire and cloud at the Egyptian army and threw it into confusion.  He made the wheels of their chariots come off so that they had difficulty driving.  And the Egyptians said, “Let’s get away from the Israelites!  The Lord is fighting for them against Egypt.”  

Then God instructed Moses to stretch his hand over the sea so that the waters would flow over the Egyptians and their chariots and horsemen.  So he did and at daybreak the sea went back into place.  Not one of those Egyptians survived.  When the Israelites saw the great power the Lord displayed against the Egyptians, the people feared him and put their trust in him and in Moses, his servant.

Who’s Up For Checklists, Calendars and Printables?

Are you a checklist sort of person?  Do you live out of a planner every day of your life?  Have a project calendar for Project A, B and C?  A different calendar for your family?

I am an avid list maker, have a planner, click in appts on my smartphone, have a family calendar on the fridge and a project calendar hanging in my office or attached to my planner since I work in the living room more often than I do the office.  Pitiful, right?

Well, if you are always on the lookout for checklists and printable calendars that are easy peasy to print and write in or type in from your computer and print, I have a free item or two to offer you for what I’m calling Take Away Tuesday.

Interested?  Check back tomorrow on Take Away Tuesday.

What types of checklists are you looking for?

Happy planning,

Carol

Question of the Week

I wanted to add a new weekly theme.  Thought it would be fun.  The question for this week is:

 

If you could do anything at all and you would not fail, what would you do?

 

Please play along.   Blog about it on your blog and link me in my comments and I’ll link you here so the peeps can read what you wrote or else just comment me if you don’t want to blog about it.  Bare your soul!  Live out loud!

If you are interested, I’ll post a new question each week, every Sunday.  C’mon y’all.  Let’s play.  ;)

I can’t wait to read what your answers are!

Cheers!

Carol

 

Consecration of the Firstborn and Headed for the Red Sea

This is Reading the Bible in 365 Days (although it’ll most likely be longer) and today, it’s on Exodus 13.

Consecration of the Firstborn

God told Moses to dedicate to him every firstborn male.  The first offspring of every womb among the Israelites belongs to him, whether man or animal.  What about female if she is firstborn, I wonder?  Nope, just the first of the sons born to each.  Same as the deal with Pharoah and each firstborn son.  And then Moses told them all to commemorate the day they came out of Egypt, out of slavery and to eat nothing containing yeast.  God was giving the land to them that he swore to their forefathers and they should observe the ceremony this month.

Crossing the Sea

When Pharaoh let them go, God didn’t lead them on the road through the Philistine country, though that was shorter.  God said, “If they face war, they might change their minds and return to Egypt.”  So God led the people around by the desert road toward the Red Sea.  The Israelites went out of Egypt armed for battle.   Moses took the bones of Joseph with him because Joseph had made the sons of Israel swear an oath.  He had said, “God will surely come to your aid, and then you must carry my bones up with you from this place.”  By day the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night.   Neither the pillar of cloud by day nor the pillar of fire by night left its place in front of the people. How cool is that?  I did not know about that part.  Learning all kinds o’ stuff.

Passover

Exodus 12 (paraphrased)

The Passover

12:14-20pp — Lev 23:4-8; Nu 28:16-25; Dt 16:1-8

The Lord told to Moses and Aaron in Egypt, “Tell the community of Israel that on the 10th day of this month each man is to take a lamb for his family, one for each household.  If any household is too small for a whole lamb, they must share one with their nearest neighbor.  

The animals must be year-old males without defect, and take them from the sheep or the goats.  Take care of them until the 14th day of the month, when all the people of the community of Israel must slaughter them at twilight.  Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs.  That same night they are to eat the meat roasted over the fire, along with bitter herbs, and bread made without yeast.

Do not eat the meat raw or cooked in water, but roast it over the fire–head, legs and inner parts.  Do not leave any of it till morning; if some is left till morning, burn it.  Eat it with your cloak tucked into your belt, sandals on your feet and your staff in your hand.  Eat it quickly; it is the Lord’s Passover.  On that same night I will pass through Egypt and strike down every firstborn–both men and animals–and I will bring judgment on all the gods of Egypt.  I am the Lord.

The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are; and when I see the blood, no plague will touch you when I strike.  For the generations to come you shall celebrate this day as a festival to the Lord.  For 7 days you are to eat bread made without yeast.  On the 1st day remove the yeast from your houses, for whoever eats anything with yeast these days must be cut off from Israel.  On the 1st day hold a sacred assembly, and another one on the 7th day.  Do no work at all on these days, except to prepare food for everyone to eat–that’s all.

Celebrate the Feast of Unleavened Bread, because it was on this day I brought your divisions out of Egypt.  Celebrate this day for the generations to come.  In the first month you are to eat bread made without yeast, from the evening of the 14th day until the evening of the 21st day.  For 7 days no yeast is to be found in your houses.  And whoever eats anything with yeast in it must be cut off from the community of Israel, whether he is an alien or native-born.  Eat nothing made with yeast.  Wherever you live, you must eat unleavened bread.”

Moses called all the elders of Israel and said, “Go and get the animals for your families and slaughter the Passover lamb.  Take a bunch of hyssop, dip it into the blood in the basin and put some of the blood on the top and both sides of the doorframe.  Not one of you shall go out of his house til morning.”  He told them what to do with the blood and why.  “Obey these instructions as a lasting ordinance for you and your descendants.

When you enter the land that the Lord will give you as he promised, observe this ceremony.  And when your children ask you, ‘What does this ceremony mean to you?’ tell them, ‘It is the Passover sacrifice to the Lord, who passed over the houses of the Israelites in Egypt and spared our homes when he struck down the Egyptians.’ ”  Then the people bowed down and worshiped.  The Israelites did as the Lord commanded.

At midnight the Lord struck down all the firstborn in Egypt, including the firstborn of all the livestock.  Pharaoh, all his officials and all the Egyptians got up during the night, and there was loud wailing in Egypt, for there was not a house without someone dead.

The Exodus

During the night Pharaoh called Moses and Aaron and said, “Up!  Leave my people, you and the Israelites!  Go worship.  Take your flocks and herds and go.  And bless me.”  The Egyptians urged the people to hurry and leave the country.  “For otherwise,” they said, “we will all die!”  So the people took their dough before the yeast was added, and carried it on their shoulders in kneading troughs wrapped in clothing.

The Israelites did as Moses instructed and asked the Egyptians for articles of silver and gold and for clothing.  The Lord had made the Egyptians favorably disposed toward the people, and they gave them what they asked for; so they plundered the Egyptians.  The Israelites journeyed from Rameses to Succoth.  There were about 600,000 men on foot, besides women and children.  Many other people went up with them, as well as large droves of livestock, both flocks and herds.

With the dough they had brought from Egypt, they baked cakes of unleavened bread.  The dough was without yeast because they had been driven out of Egypt and did not have time to prepare food for themselves.  Now the length of time the Israelite people lived in Egypt was 430 years.  At the end of the 430 years, to the very day, all the Lord’s divisions left Egypt.  Because the Lord kept vigil that night to bring them out of Egypt, on this night all the Israelites are to keep vigil to honor the Lord for the generations to come.

Passover Restrictions

The Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “These are the regulations for the Passover:  No foreigner is to eat of it.  Any slave you have bought may eat of it after you have circumcised him, but a temporary resident and a hired worker may not eat of it.  It must be eaten inside one house; take none of the meat outside the house.  Do not break any of the bones.

The whole community of Israel must celebrate it.  An alien living among you who wants to celebrate the Lord’s Passover must have all the males in his household circumcised; then he may take part like one born in the land.  No uncircumcised male may eat of it.  The same law applies to the native-born and to the alien living among you.”  All the Israelites did just what the Lord had commanded Moses and Aaron.  And on that very day the Lord brought the Israelites out of Egypt by their divisions.

Focus on the Positive

“Finally…whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

Philippians 4:8 NIV

__________

Here, the Lord is suggesting we focus on the good, the better side to things.  We are not to dwell on the negative, to judge others harshly as if we are perfect because we are not.  None of us are.  We need to see the good in others, the positive aspects to life, the truth, what’s right, notice beauty all around us, those who work hard to get where they are, as long as they get there respectably and not trample others on the way to where they’re going.  So even God is telling us to focus on the positive.

Do you think it means something else?  Something different?  Please add to the conversation in the comments below.  We want to hear from YOU.  ;)