back to blogging… maybe

I’m finding that I have a love-hate relationship with a wide variety of tasks… blogging, vacuuming, laundry, goal setting. I find that these things I have this love-hate relationship with are such that I dislike doing it, but I *love* it when the task is done. I don’t really like to vacuum, but I love freshly vacuumed carpets. I don’t like sweeping and mopping, but I love freshly swept and mopped tile floor. Also, I love posting my stories and my ramblings, but getting them to a postable stage is an arduous task. And its hard to remember, at times, that things worth doing are often hard things to do. Yeah, I dislike vacuuming and laundry (and most other household chores) because they are dull and boring to do. That can be remedied with a podcast or audio book.

However, I’ve not completely figured out how to remedy this love-hate relationship with blogging and goal setting. And they are intimately connected, unfortunately. I love to set goals so that I can feel purposeful and intentional about my activities and course of daily life. I want to know what needs to get done, what I want to get done, and what I did get done. But I don’t want to have to set goals, nor look at them when I don’t meet them. I’m not thinking of writing out goals right now; life is just too unpredictable. And if I set goals and don’t reach them, that leaves me feeling blah… so I’m not doing “goals”.

But blogging is an outlet, a chance for me to declare to noone in particular “hey, look at me, I vacuumed this week!” And if I’ve set goals, I get to declare “I not only decided I was going to vacuum this week, but I actually did it! Look at me!” And, of course, if I don’t meet my goals, I just don’t blog about it. Blogging is also a creative outlet, yes, but I don’t want my blogging to be just about me getting things done, or merely me expressing my own creativity.

I would love for my blogging to have such focused purposes as encouraging women to love their husbands, or challenging the reader’s thoughts on this or that deep topic… alas, to choose one such area is not for me. Being a stay-at-home-mom suits me quite well, because the general topics I cover in any one day vary tremendously. And so, my blogging will reflect this diversity. For better or for worse.

During this 8 month hiatus, I didn’t write. In fact, the last draft of a blog post I have is from last September, so you see, I haven’t written in quite a few months. But I did do a lot of other things, from several work projects, reading a slew of books, enjoying the time with my family, and thinking deeply about a variety of topics. I hope to start writing again about all these things. I want to start writing again. I’m ready, I think, to do the hard thing that is worth doing.

So, expect a variety of posts. Some about day to day life, some about deep issues. Sometimes I have conversations with friends and family that I want to write about. Sometimes I read something I want to write about. Sometimes, its an idea that came out of the blue. So, I’m going to work on this discipline of making time, sitting down and writing.

An end, or a means to an end?

Its been a week or more since the Hubby and I talked about this, but its been on my mind. In education these days, or at least this is the way it seems to me, reading, writing and math are taught as the goal of the teaching. A young man stopped by a week or so ago trying to sell us books to teach Little Man to read… they were colorful, bilingual and relevant topics (supposedly — shapes, colors, dinosaurs). But the goal was teaching reading. For car trips, I’ve picked up ‘preschool’ level books, with space to color and stickers to stick on for ‘A, B, Cs’ and ‘Math!’. The goal is to teach reading, writing and math.

This is not necessarily a bad thing. But it lessens the value of these subjects. Alone, what is it worth to just write? or just do sums? or just read? Okay, I get great pleasure from merely reading, but then it is mostly entertainment.

The value could be so much more, though. If we, as we teach, approach teaching these subjects as means to greater ends, however, their value increases exponentially. One caveat though… the greater ends must be worthy in themselves.

Yeah, gotta bring it back to ‘unschooling’. Its all about approach. After we seek to teach our children about how to BE, then we can teach our children how to DO. And its about doing something. Perhaps it is finding pleasure and entertainment in reading that we are teaching. Perhaps it is about becoming a better person, knowing human nature, or knowing God. Perhaps it is running a household or keeping track of spending, income or investments.

Anyhoo, that’s it. Lets change our approach. Don’t teach reading, writing and math as the end, but as the means to a greater end.

Writing Inspiration — goals and excuses

I have felt a complete lack of inspiration when it comes to blog writing lately. Please note that its been nearly 2 full weeks since I last put up a post. I’m sure I’ve had witty thoughts, inspiriting words to write and interesting articles, but none have lasted long enough to make it into the post editor. Maybe that’s  my problem? Maybe I should be writing the posts in evernote.

Anyhoo, one day this last week, I found I had the best excuse ever for the complete lack of inspiration and energy. I’m pregnant!

Yes, let me holler that a bit louder and more clearly. I’M PREGNANT!!!!!

And the timing is just about perfect as far is it being an excuse for not blogging. God’s timing is perfect in other ways, too, though I doubt He intended to give me an excuse for not blogging over that two week period.

I should still have some goals for May, right? After all, there are birthdays this month that require some sort of gift like object (little boy and a nephew), one of the languishing baby blankets is for a friend who’s hubby got a job (yea!) and is moving this summer (boo!), and June is quite out for getting much other than survival done. I’ve worked out to teach some swimming lessons that month — though that gets one goal done, “swimming lessons for little boy”.

Of course, I also need to be sure and tell the story of our journey to grow our family. And post #500 is quickly approaching and there is the sense that it should be some deep/insightful/exciting kind of post. We’ll see.

As for April goals, I did okay.

  1. Write Hubby a love note (though it was by email, that still counts, yes?)
  2. Work on morning devotion habit (a bit of Bible study, a bit of prayer)
  3. Finish the 2 very late baby blankets (since both babies are born!)
  4. Read 2 new books.
  5. Keep up the blog habit (2x a week!)
  6. Work on being intentional with my time.

Yeah, I think I did okay. In fact, I read way more than 2 new books as I jumped for the ‘ultimate homemaking e-book bundle’ last week. 97 e-books. I’ve made it though a slew of those books, though some I stopped reading after a  page or two when I figured out I wasn’t so interested in that book. (note to self: I should review these books as I read them)

May goals…

May will be about maintenance. Maintain habits, maintain house, that sort of thing. And I’ll dabble… in sewing, reading books. And I’ll aim to post about them along the way.

I love the idea of making goals and working towards them, but that seems to be what is first to go when my energy lags or life gets busy. I must remember to make the goals work for me, not be a slave to them.

And Happy Mother’s Day! I got a great mother’s day gift this year…. a positive pregnancy test. 😛 Any other fun gifts?