How are things going in your little corner of the world? Thanks so much for your submissions for the blog hop! I got more than I expected- One day next week I am going to sit down with a rather large mug of tea and look at all of them- I can’t wait! (If you have a blog that you’d like to submit for consideration, you can find the details here.)
AND… The OFFICIAL announcement for this fall’s free Block of the Month will be coming next week! I’m sooooo excited….
Things here have been busy, but a good busy. Lately, I am feeling more intentional. Many days I just have this long to-do list, and in the evening I kind of mentally rate my day based on how much I was able to check off of that list. But I have been realizing lately that checking a lot of things off of my list hasn’t exactly made me more joyful. Don’t get me wrong- it makes me feel very productive, and for someone with a personality like mine (type A, git-er-done!) that is a very big part of feeling good. I like doing things (or, more accurately- I like having done things! ‘Cause in the middle they are oftentimes difficult and inconvenient, but I like looking back at what I have done and made.) However, in recognizing and honoring that part of my personality, I am trying to slow down just a little bit, for a little while anyway. This week, oldest daughter went back to work as a teacher AND she started attending grad school, and Sunday youngest daughter will be heading back to college… so I am trying to savor the little bits of time that I get to spend with them.
Last week, the girls and I headed off on an all-day shopping trip. Yesterday, youngest daughter and I went into the city (Philadelphia) and had lunch at a little French cafe, browsed in stores that we can’t afford, shopped at our favorite art supply store, and found a fabric museum (yes you heard me- a fabric museum) and watched an interesting film on Japanese indigo dying.
This week, there will be packing and organizing and another lunch out and shopping for last minute school supplies and haircuts and maybe even manicures/pedicures. There is the part of my brain telling me- you don’t have time for this frivolous stuff- you have deadlines. You have your to-do list. And then there is my heart telling me- you don’t NOT have time to do these things while you can. These are the good old days… So, I feel busy in that I am doing a lot, but it’s fun and relaxing stuff that recharges my batteries and just helps me to enjoy life a little bit more. As I do all of these things, and I hear the nagging in the back of my mind about my to-do list, I will consciously decide to focus on the present, and just let the other stuff go for the moment.
I think that’s why it’s also been very good for me to get a puppy. It forces me to slow down a couple of times a day to play with him, and take him out for walks. My driven personality tries to tell me that that is not productive time, that I could be writing another email or sewing another seam or doing another sketch, but my heart and soul know better. My heart and soul know that slowing down to play and laugh at his antics, and pet his soft fur, are necessary for my well-being. Amazing how much joy 6 1/2 pounds of fur and wiggly tail can bring!
So this week, I haven’t done much in the way of blog posts, or newsletters, or social media. I am just trying to be, and not trying so hard to do.
Slowing down is really hard for me! But I am trying. I read this in my devotional this morning:
Spend time with Me for the pure pleasure of being in My company. I can brighten up the dullest of gray days; I can add sparkle to the routines of daily life. You have to repeat so many tasks day after day. This monotony can dull your thinking until your mind slips into neutral. A mind that is unfocused is vulnerable to the world, the flesh and the devil, all of which exert a downward pull on your thoughts. As your thinking processes deteriorate, you become increasingly confused and directionless. The best remedy is to refocus your mind and heart on Me, your constant Companion. Jesus Calling, by Sarah Young
Do you need to refocus? What are you doing today to slow down and savor life, even if just for a few minutes? Is it quiet time, or doing something creative? Going for a walk? Please let me know in the comments…