The truth about writing

May 21, 2017

There’s no denying that the writing I’ve been doing here lately has been sub-par at best. And while that’s mostly due to laziness on my part, I feel like it’s worth saying that there are other reasons too.

For one, with all the moving stuff lately, I’ve been getting to bed late, which has resulted in a foggy, tired brain that doesn’t care as much about what I’m writing as it does about my head hitting the pillow and turning off the lights. This is lame and not fair to the poor people who actually take the time to read what I write every day. Sorry guys.

Excuse/reason #2 is that I generally choose not to write about really personal stuff, not even for my sake as much as for others’. I grew up in a kind of dysfunctional family with people who I like to believe are genuinely trying to do their best and I don’t feel like it’s fair for me to publicly broadcast my own personal views on various family situations since it’s not only my story to tell and, anyway, they haven’t given me their consent to share their personal stories with the internet. And in my own little family with my husband and children, I’m careful about what I share because, again, it’s not always or only my business and I don’t want to invade their privacy with my public writing. Same goes for my personal take on random conversations with people from church and whatnot. If it’s somebody else’s business, I try to let them keep it that way and not leave people feeling like their private lives are being exposed in ways they might not appreciate.

The other main thing I don’t always feel comfortable writing about is experiences and thoughts that are just too sacred to feel appropriate sharing publicly. It’s not that I’m against talking about my beliefs and experiences, it’s just that some things are better left said in my journal or to a friend in a personal conversation than on the internet.

So, taking those things into account, often what I’m left writing about is whatever happened to me that day (often boring) or whatever random thing I’ve been thinking about (often not more than a paragraph of coherent thought and/or not a fully formulated thought that’s worth writing down yet) or… I dunno, whatever else there is.

More than a few times lately I’ve wondered if I should change my goal from posting on my blog every day to just plain sitting down to write every day. Maybe it would be more meaningful to write something private that’s really personal than to write something public that’s really lame. Maybe it would be better. But I do still think there’s merit and value to this kind of writing. Not just for the sake of following through on a personal goal I set, but also because I think writing within certain parameters pushes me to write things I might not have otherwise.

Sometimes the written rambling can be valuable to my thought process. And often just knowing that I’ll need to sit down and write every day keeps me paying attention to my day and what, exactly, I might share. I find myself starting blog posts in my head a lot and, though I wish I could remember them later when I have the time to sit down, I think the mental exercise in and of itself is a valuable one. To recognize the things that stand out to me throughout the day. To mentally filter through things that I’d want to share or keep private. To see if I have enough to say about something to fill more than a couple sentences. There’s more to this goal than filling a blog post every day.

There’s more to writing than the words that end up on the paper.

And part of the value–perhaps most of the value in the drudgery of a year-long goal like this isn’t so much the end result of what’s down on paper, but the process of flexing my muscles and using my voice. I didn’t set the goal to end up with 365 pieces of writing. I did it to become a better writer. And there’s no way that’s going to happen if every single piece I write is brilliant and polished. Some of them are going to be terrible and embarrassing to read later. It’s the moving from awful writing to something that might be of value that marks the real growth. It’s the roller coaster of both smashed in together in the same week that’s proof of real, daily life.

Growth is not one of those moving walkways at the airport where we cooly step on at the beginning and easily step off at the end. It’s a jolted hill-climb of peaks and valleys and bumps and bruises that lead us to a destination–more often than not one other than what we had initially envisioned–where we finally catch our breath for a moment and realize that, while we’re nowhere near perfect yet, our legs aren’t quite as sore as they were when we started. And we recognize that it’s because we’re building muscle. That is growth.

So it’s growing I’m after. And with it comes the good and the probably-not-worth-reading. But I’m grateful for the process, for the monotony of days in single file that force me to keep on trying. There are days I think about stopping and giving up. And it’s always on those days when I think, “But what if I have something really worthwhile to say and I don’t because I’ve gotten out of the habit?” I can’t help feeling that there are things I’ve already said and more things to come that I’ll be glad to have written down.

And for all the days in between, well, that’s just the price you pay for building a habit.

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Reality vs. Dreams

May 20, 2017

Things I’ve eaten so far today:

  • Breakfast: 3/4 c cereal + 1/2 c milk
  • Snack: 1 1/2 c cherries + string cheese
  • Lunch: choc pb banana smoothie

Things I would have eaten already today if I didn’t have gestational diabetes:

  • the rest of the m&m cookies in the cupboard
  • however many snickers bars are left in the fridge
  • several ice cream bars
  • a whole bunch of some delicious kind of bread
  • GMF blizzard
  • pizza from the place next to the mattress store
  • cake
  • the rest of the bag of cherries
  • a lot lot lot lot lot lot lot of other food

 

Wish me luck

May 18, 2017

Today I (with the help of my lawyers) officially formed the LLC. Next stop: find an accountant, open a business bank account, finish actually doing all the things, and make a million dollars.

Today’s victory: finding dry goods containers that fit on the pantry shelf

May 17, 2017

I’m simultaneously disappointed and not at all surprised by my ability to feel complain-y in the midst of so many abundant blessings. To feel so incredibly grateful for a house–a whole house!–and at the same time feel all in a hurry to buy furniture and figure things out and make every part of it perfect and useful. (As if that were even practical or possible only a matter of days after closing and moving in.) To recognize what a gift it is to be pregnant and have ultrasounds each week showing me that our baby is healthy and still be so grumpy about being uncomfortable and puffy and the size of a barge. To finally–finally!–have our gas turned on so we can have hot water and take showers and use the stove… and then grumble my way through the inevitable frustration of using a new shower for the first time. What is it that makes us so both ways?

I wish I could be all goodness and patience and gratitude. But instead all too often I find myself checking things off in my mind and then moving on to the next thing to rush through.

Trying so, so consciously to chill out and slow down and not bother worrying over all the things I can’t make happen all at once anyway. Like maybe I’ll get the LLC organized tomorrow, but maybe I won’t be able to release the quiet page patterns and kits before the baby’s born next month. And maybe we’ll get the desktop computer set up, but it’ll be on a folding table and in a spot that we end up changing our minds about in a few days. And maybe we’ll get some debts paid off, but not buy a new mattress or bed frame for a few months after all.

Contrary to social media, even the seemingly bigger moments in life (like buying a house or starting a business or growing a baby) come together one small bit at a time, day by day. And then the climax comes along (the house is officially bought! the business is formed! the baby is born!) and the very moment after it’s more small things, more days in single file.

Trying to keep my priorities in the forefront and not sweat the rest. Really trying.

Mostly boring house update

May 16, 2017

Trying to make the most of my waiting room time at the doctor’s office again. I’m happy to report that our house is looking less and less room-of-requirement-y by the day and there are hardly any boxes left in the front room now. The bedrooms are all either empty except for a bed or a total mess, but the kitchen is completely put away (whoop!), and both my sewing area and the playroom in the basement are furnished and put away! 

Still need to get a desk for the office and some bar stools for the kitchen island and to paint the kitchen table and chairs we bought at the thrift store a couple weeks ago. Also still need to set up the shelves in the library so I can unpack all the books. 

We have two small front rooms that you see right when you walk in the front door. One was clearly meant to be a dining room and the other seems like it should be a sitting room/piano room kind of area, but since we don’t have a piano or dining room furniture we decided to make the space work for us and (at least for now) use the dining room as an office and the sitting room as a little library. 

We live close enough to my in laws that we’re not very likely to actually use a dining room anytime soon since, if there were a big meal, it would probably be at their house anyway. And I do hope we get a piano sometime soon since Bryan actually plays really well and I’d like for the kids and me to learn, but we can make room for it once we actually have one. 

We have a fairly big storage area in the basement that’s pretty full of random boxes right now, but it’s so nice to have a place to get it out of the way and then we can sort through and organize it when we have the time and energy–whether that be in a few days or next year. Though hopefully a little sooner than next year since I know there’s some food storage somewhere in that heap. 

In other house news, we haven’t had gas (heat, hot water, gas for the stove, etc.) since we moved in. We did everything right to have it switched over/turned on before we moved in last week, but there was some clerical mistake and they forgot to take care of it. They’re supposed to be coming to turn it on today, so hopefully that actually happens. 

Welp, still waiting but all out of boring news to update you with, so I guess I’ll sign off. Hope you’re all having an exciting Tuesday. 

Wiped out

May 15, 2017

Today was good and busy. I’m physically wiped out, but really happy with everything we were able to get done. Super grateful for generous help. Def time for bed now. 

Things that did not disappoint

May 14, 2017

Here are some things about our house that I thought would be awesome and totally ARE:

  • Nice carpet
  • Walls in pretty/normal/not ugly colors
  • A bathroom on the main floor
  • Carpet
  • A finished basement where the kids can play (i.e. adds a buffer to their noise and keeps the messes out of the main living areas
  • Really nice white wood blinds instead of the gross cheap mini blinds 
  • A two car garage
  • Not hearing neighbors through the walls 
  • Oh and did I mention carpet?

So grateful and happy for our new house. 

Moved in! 

May 13, 2017

We officially moved into the new house today! It’s been hours and hours of packing loading and unloading (and even some unpacking–woot!), but we finally have all our stuff out of the rental and into our new house! It looks remarkably like the room of requirement on our main floor right now, but I’m just so happy it’s all in and done. 

Unpacking is way less pressure to me than loading and unloading and all the heavy lifting that goes with it. If I weren’t pregnant I wouldn’t even mind that part, but, well, let’s just say my body protested anytime I even so much thought about being a noticeable degree of helpful. 

But I’m happy to report that I got most of the kitchen unpacked and put away after the kids were finally in bed and Bryan was returning the moving truck. It’s amazing how much faster it goes putting things away than packing them up. 

Anyway, it’s crazy late and we’re all wiped out, so I’m off to bed. G’night! 

We bought a house

May 12, 2017

We finally officially bought a house today. We did the final walk through this morning, signed the closing papers, and got a red Dixie cup full of all the keys. (Not sure why there are so many. It’s just a regular house.) 

Then we spent the rest of the day moving in with the small loads we could fit in our cars. Or I guess I should maybe clarify that Bryan spent the whole day loading and unloading both cars and I helped drive one car back and forth a few times. 

I’ve actually grown to kind of love moving and sincerely wish I could be more involved with all the actual, well, moving, but being super pregnant isn’t really conducive to heavy lifting or having any actual energy, so I’ve been a pretty useless sidekick today. Well, a winning sidekick in the growing of a hopefully very healthy baby boy, but a total dud in the helping-move-boxes category. Though I did help pack several boxes and of course kept an eye on Felix as he played with legos at the new house while Bryan unloaded a million boxes and I almost fell asleep on a big pile of blankets. (Why we have that many blankets I’ll never know.) 

Anyway, today has been exhausting for Bryan since he basically moved 2/3 of our belongings all by himself and exhausting for me because I’m growing a baby and exhausting for Felix because he didn’t take a nap, and not so exhausting for Olivia because she was at school for most of it and then just got to join in the fun, but all around it’s been a really, really good day. 

I’ll never forget the moment when we walked inside our brand new house all by ourselves for the first time and Bryan just looked at me and looked around at the house and then got teary-eyed. It’s good to finally be home. 

Or at least it will be tomorrow after we move our beds and can actually start living there.