Another beautiful day in the neighbourhood! After a full day of movies, shopping and errands with the girls it's time to hide in the cool basement and get some work done! I'm finishing off my toilet paper roll treats (no, the treats aren't the toilet paper rolls ... the treats are inside the decorated toiled paper rolls ... check out below for that project) and I'm also heading into full production of Alicia's birthday party invitations (yes ... I know her birthday isn't until October 5th but if I don't get them done now I KNOW I'll be scrambling to finish them at the last minute ... as usual!!)
So ... I've wanted to send out a not-so-quick e-mail for quite a while now ... I just didn't have the time ... but now I'm making the time because I think it's really important for us gals to think about, especially at this time of year when the speed of life starts increasing at a scary rate and as we start planning our fall activites for the kids. This week I just happened to stumble across two magazine articles that perfectly outlined what I wanted to say about this ... so I'm now going to copy parts of those article to get my point across (faster and phrased a lot better than I could come up with!)
Last week I sent out an e-mail and a blog post inviting you all to join my stamping club (I only have 3 spots available, by the way, so e-mail me if you would like *in*!!). Often when I invite people to come to my classes, my craft nights or join my clubs a very common reply I get is "I don't have time". I often find a lot of women feel guilty taking the time for such a "frivilous" night out. After all, we all have that never-ending pile of laundry that should be done, we're tired after running the kids to all of their activities and many of use feel it's somehow unfair to "saddle" our husbands with the child care after they have been hard at work all day/week. I get it. I'm a wife and mother too ... and I have the same chores nagging at me and the same guilt issues ... but I DO manage to shake them off and take some time for me. Of course my form of escape and *me time* is crafting. Yours may be yoga class, reading a magazine or just going for a walk. Whatever you choose to do it is SO important to have some time for yourself ... and another article I read states that it's very important for that time to not always be BY yourself ... but face to face with others.
This is part of what Gretchen Rubin's article says (taken from the April 2013 issue of Good Housekeeping)
"Create a Happier Life"
Whether you're knitting a scart of starting a blog, creating something is one of the most delightful ways to enhance happiness. When you collect ideas and combine them in an original way, you can't help stretching yourself. And when you do it with others, you strengthen your relationsips - one of the best ways to increase joy.
Except, most people - busy women especially - don't take the time to be creative. For one thing, creating means pausing , playing, and sometimes failing. It' doesn't always feel productive, ...
Gretchen then goes on to share some techniques to help you spark ideas ... but her above message says exactly what I believe. Creating is an amazing journey. So many people say (and truly believe) "I'm not at all creative". That's not true. EVERYONE is creative. Adults have just forgotten how to "let themselves go" - they are so critical of the end result that they consider their creation an epic failure. That's sad. Have you ever watched a child color or draw? What child doesn't love to make things?? And at what point does that child STOP loving to create things?? I'll tell you when - when their inner voice tells them that their drawing is terrible or the coloring isn't inside the lines enough. Adults simply sensor too much. Again, that's sad. Have you ever been in your car alone and sung out loud at the top of your voice knowing that the sound is right up there with the sound of a thousand nails on a blackboard ... but you're alone, so it doesn't matter and it feels great just to belt out a song you love??? THAT'S the feeling that creating can give you ... if you are brave enough not to be self critical and sensor your own self.
I read a second article in the same issue of Good Housekeeping. In this one Elizabeth Berg makes an excellent case for getting together - face-to-face - with friends. Not FaceBOOK or e-mail but to actually go for a coffee with a real body! She says:
"The Case for Face"...
Dealing with only one person at a time goes against our now ingrained need to multitask. It doesn't just feel like a guilty pleasure to take time to see friends; it feels a little nuts. The myriad of things I am ignoring in my own life in order to make real-time, in-person inquiries into the life of another!
But there's a cost to not seeing people ...... So much of what we feel is revealed in the way we lean forward or back, raise an eyebrow, blush before delivering a sentence, laugh or tear up. Tone adds so much to what we say. Silence does, too.
Yet when we try to make a plan to see someone, it often ends up being three weeks away, and by then something else has come up and we have to cancel - again. We fill our lives with more because we can, and after a while it feels as though we must fill them.
We make excuses for ourselves not to see people in person. We convince ourselves that we reailly don't have time to do that. But the truth is, we do have time. We just need to make it as much of a priority as the other things that eat up our days and nights.
So what's the point of this post? Well ... of course I would love for you to be creative and get some face-to-face time with a great group of ladies by joining my club or coming to my class(es) but that really isn't what I'm all about ... and it isn't the point of my post. This month, as we spend hours and hundreds of dollars researching and signing our KIDS up for all kinds of extracurricular activities I encourage you to sign yourself up for something that interests YOU ... and that involves face-to-face time with other like-minded people. Don't just focus on expanding your KIDS' interests and skills ... focus on expanding YOUR interest and skills as well. You deserve a few hours a week for YOU; your wellbeing, your interest and your friends. Take a cooking class, learn a new language, join a book club ... or join my club ... but do something for you. I'm pretty sure you'll be happier if you do :)
That's my sermon for today. Thanks for reading. Now go do something fun. I'm going to the park with my kids.
Have an awesome night :)