I stole a few moments today to catch up with a handful of my favorite blogs. And then I immediately put down the computer, ditched my dingy shorts for a handmade skirt, grabbed my camera, and dragged the children outside, because it seemed like we could do some living out there instead of the mere existing we were doing in the house.
You know those “crafty, but also just very mindful of the everyday bits and pieces of life” kind of bloggers? The ones who always have the perfect words to make their days seem utterly captivating? And full?
That’s exactly the kind of reading I need after the last few weeks. Not that these have been bad weeks. On the contrary. But they have been busy – full of computer projects, whirlwind day trips and 2-day trips, running to-and-fro. When I haven’t been en-route somewhere, I’ve been consumed with HTML, PHP, WordPress, plugins, flickr, and all manner of techy things. I’m still working out a couple of small kinks with this blog, and I’ve also gone and converted our personal family website to a blog format. I get so much enjoyment out of these projects, but they can be awfully consuming, and at the end of the day, I have to admit to a feeling of dissatisfaction – no matter how much it felt like fun at the time.
What happened to that sweet Summer pace? The hours in the back yard soaking my feet in the kiddie pool while flipping through crafty magazines? Where are all of the baked goods? Summer fruit crisps and berry muffins? Where are the spontaneous outings with the kids? Where on Earth is my clean house? Where are the washing machine, feather duster, and vacuum cleaner, for that matter? Where is the balance?
Balance. That’s what’s missing. I used to have a system that I found very helpful: Every morning, I’d take a piece of paper and put three headings down on it
Then I’d make my to-do list – everything I had to do, and everything I wanted to do – putting each task under the correct heading. When I was ready to start my day, I’d tackle the to-do list in an order that made sure something from each category was accomplished. Even if I only did three things all day, I could take comfort in the fact that I didn’t neglect any of the three big areas.
I need to get back to that. I need to get some balance back. I am inspired by Heather’s Month of Balance on Beauty that Moves. Maybe I can work a little photography into my own quest for balance? Or maybe I’ll just stick with my strength: making lists!
One important thing that needs to be on the list every day for the next few weeks? Enjoy the summer! There’s not a whole lot of it left, and it certainly shouldn’t be squandered in front of a computer screen. No matter how enticing, that’s a project that’s best left for cozy indoor days, when there’s a chill in the outside air. I plan to go back and re-read Grace’s Summer Is series on Uncommon Grace. I can’t help but let it put me in the right frame of mind after that.
Tomorrow is going to be a good day to start making lists again, and squeezing as much summer out of the days as I possibly can. I see nothing major on the agenda, aside from the Bug Guy in the late afteroon. (We have yellow jackets again. Just like last year. I hope, this time, that we are getting them early enough that there are fewer in the nest and I don’t spend the next several days squashing 100 of the creepy little buggers.)
There’s a flowey skirt I could wear, a kitchen I could clean, a farmer’s market I could go to, and a jar of jam I could cook up, if I were feeling domestically-inclined. There’s a breezy patio chair with my name on it, and some chalk the kids and I could decorate the yard with, if I were feeling playful. Oh, I hope I’m feeling domestically-inclined and playful! I need a quintessential Summer day and I need it stat!