I posted recently on the benefits of Slow Living and I am making a concerted effort to slow things down. Sometimes it’s just not possible, but being considered and factoring in time to just hang out can make a huge difference.
So I thought I should show you that I’m trying to walk the walk, not just talk the talk. Here are some of the things I’m doing to live a more considered life.
Reading real books. I love to read, and for years my husband has described me as a book worm. I never really liked that description as it has negative connotations from younger years (i.e. nerd alert!). But now I’m quite chuffed to be called a book work, but sadly did lose that title for a time. The thing is, writers must be readers. Period. You can not write effectively if you don’t read a lot. I have a Kindle, with lots of (unread) books on it. But nothing feels cosier than cosy-ing up with a real book in bed. At the moment I’m reading Tim Winton’s Island Home: A Landscape Memoir. The man is a poetic genius. A book like this is inspiring and aspirational. I’m only two chapters in and already dreaming of turquoise skies and seas, and a never ending landscape.
Learning to sew. I’ve always wanted to learn. Before my Mum got sick and my children were smaller, we had a couple of lessons. She told me to take the machine home and practice on it. So I did that, but something went wrong with it and I didn’t know enough about the machine to fix it. (Turns out that nothing was actually wrong with the machine – I just hadn’t threaded it properly!) But then Mum got sick and the sewing machine got put away and forgotten about. This year for my birthday, my husband bought me three sewing lessons 💕. I got the bug, so I’ve signed up for a Saturday class for this term.
So far I’ve made a ‘bag bag’, a table cloth, a draw string bag (which is now a library bag for my three-year old), and a carry bag. Next class is a cushion, which I am really excited about because that’s one of the reasons I wanted to learn to sew – to make cushion covers.
That two hours in class where I’m cutting, pinning and sewing, I get the same feeling that I get when I’m painting or drawing. It’s meditative and soothing.
3. Taking stock. There is nothing like taking stock to help you slow down and consider life. This Taking Stock list is from Pip Lincoln’s blog, Meet Me at Mikes. It’s a gorgeous feel-good blog written by an intelligent, kind and generous woman – take a look if you haven’t seen it.
So here is my Taking Stock list below. If you want to have a go of your own, it’s a lovely exercise that will calm you and inspire you.
Cooking : a curry
Drinking : Peppermint tea
Reading: Island Home: A Landscape Memoir by Tim Winton
Wanting: to warm up my feet
Looking: at ways to slow down
Playing: The Very Hungry Caterpillar game with my three year old
Deciding: how to warm up my feet
Wishing: it was dinner time (there is lamb and eggplant with tomatoes to come)
Enjoying: writing my blog
Waiting: for the Voice to start
Liking: watching the Voice with my kids
Wondering: when a difficult situation in my local community will settle down
Loving: being more considered in life
Pondering: life, community, family, spirituality, forgiveness…
Considering: a painting that I plan to do
Hoping: my three year old sleeps all night tonight
Marvelling: at my son’s commitment to football
Cringing: at myself still in my yoga clothes (from this morning!)
Needing: to get out of my yoga clothes and into my slippers
Questioning: the motivations of some
Wearing: yoga clothes
Following: Absolute Beginners Sewing on Instagram (where I take my class)
Noticing: how much calmer my three year old is
Knowing: I could manage my time better
Thinking: about a bath – maybe
Admiring: my husband’s way with our three kids (so patient!)
Sorting: out invoices
Getting: a gift for my friend
Bookmarking: Skill Share site
Coveting: some new winter boots
Disliking: the cold stormy weather in Melbourne today
Opening: some food mags a friend gave me
Giggling: at funny silly stuff
Feeling: today, optimistic
Snacking: on stinky cheese and crackers
Helping: my husband with dinner (well, in a minute, I will be)
Hearing: my husband teaching our seven year old son how to build a fire in the Coonara.
You can copy the list below, to do your own. Let me know if you do. I’d love to read your Taking Stock list too.