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Monday, January 05, 2009

Reflections on Balance

Today feels like the first day of the year, doesn't it? It's the first day of the first full work day of the year. It's back to school day in my neck of the woods, not that my kids are in school. They are back to regular day care for the first time since the 24th. It feels like things are ready to go back to normal.

Yesterday I posted my resolutions for 2009, along with a lot of other bloggers (well, they mostly posted theirs on the 1st. I'm a bit behind.) I've seen over and over the need for balance this year. For a little less focus on one thing- a certain genre, or a need for stats, or reading all your review copies, or blogging in general. I'm right there with you all! Three posts in particular stand out to me: Bookfool's post on balance (and reading goals), Brandie's post at A Journey of 1000 Stitches on her 2009 goals and jenclair's post about wanting a Renaissance Mind. This leads me to a little bit of introspection and I've been putting a little thought into how I want this year to turn out.

As I've mentioned several times, I'm working on updating and rebranding my little Etsy shop. I want to make a real effort to make it work this year (and I promise not to mention it all the time.) I'm starting a dedicated blog for my sewing, which I'll announce here as well, so that when I want to ask picky little questions like "how do you store your scraps?," the rest of you aren't forced to hear it. I'll still post about some projects here, but not the details that non-crafters won't care about.

Despite my grand plans for success (and million$) in that arena, I am hoping to find a little more balance between work and play this year. I am planning to treat the shop like an actual JOB for a while, something that isn't optional. Once I see if it'll work, I'll loosen up a bit. This means I'll have less time for wasting online. I want to comment MORE, so I need to make a real effort to use my time wisely. This weekend I spent as much time blog hopping as I wanted and still found time to read a book. How? I didn't get sucked into shopping for shoes I don't need or checking out the deals at or any of the inane conversations on various message boards that I don't even POST on- I just waste time at. (Don't worry, it's no one you know.) Or Facebook.

I want to spend more quality time with the boys. I want to have my days organized in such a way that I don't spend the time thinking of what else I could be doing. I don't want to be playing Cariboo while I'm thinking about sewing or stacking blocks while I'm thinking about doing dishes. Or even thinking about how I have to get ready for work in an hour while I could be relaxing with my morning coffee. I need to work on slowing down my mind. I think if I can better organize my time that I can allow myself to live in the moment instead of worrying about the future. Easier said than done, right?

I'm going to start by conciously paying attention to my online time. I'm not going to set a timer, but I'm not going to just sit there aimlessly clicking around. I have hundreds of posts in my Reader, but who cares if I comment on them a week later? I'm going to schedule 2 or 3 nights a week as my "shift" in the sewing room. I'm going to try to be more efficient in the mornings, so that I can relax instead of having to rush at the last minute. I'm going to make a point of telling myself that no one will remember how clean my house was/is, but they will remember what kind of mom I was/am. I'm going to keep the table clear for impromptu castle building and "projects" with the Pirate and Mancala games.

Is this doable? Who knows! But I think it's a fine goal to have.



  1. Your goals sound reasonable to me. I have designated two areas in my house as acceptable "clutter zones". I did this last year and it really worked out well for 2008. The kids can dump whatever they want into those clutter zones...they each have their own. Then once a month we go through them and clean them out. We actually do it every month because these zones are only so large and they cannot add more stuff if there is no room.

    The zones are made up of two large baskets I got at a craft store for $4 each. When company comes over I stash them in the garage. Ha! Easy clean up. You might find it works for you as they get older.

  2. Good luck. You have a lot on your plate, but I'm sure you can find the right balance for you.

  3. I love the New Year and all that it holds. I too have made some 'goals' for this year and hopefully they are all doable. I think that you can do it:) I know that I am going to try.

  4. I think it's a wonderful goal, Lisa. And if you find yourself not reading those blogs--take them out of your reader! I've unsubscribed to blogs that I've realized I just don't care about and it's saved me much headache about how jammed my reader gets.

    I don't think you can find balance in a day or even a week, but I think by changing little things here and there, you'll start to see a difference.

    And for one of MY 2009 goals, I'm going to bust out that brand new sewing machine that I've had for over a year and actually sew some stuff--so I may be bugging you. :)

  5. Blogs are inspiring for both reading and sewing, and I love the sense of community, but they are time-consuming.

    Best of luck on all of your goals!

  6. This certainly sounds reasonable. However, I know from experience how difficult it can be to strike that perfect balance. There just never seems to be enough time in the day to do everything I have to do and everything I want to do. But, you're right, there are many ways we all 'waste' time in small ways that add up to big chunks of time. Good luck with the resolutions. You've inspired me!

  7. Setting a timer is something that I need to do so I can reevaluate just how much time I spend online. And I sometimes just give up on commenting, but that's my goal this year. Like you, I need to realize that it doesn't matter if it's a week later, the comment is still valid.


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