We are in March already. Sometimes I want to just press pause for a moment, but no matter how hard we try the cyclone of life collects us up in its frenzied twister and dumps us into the new month. The arrival of March signals a change in seasons, cooler autumnal weather, which ultimately signals winter. While we can’t complain too much in this southern tip of Australia with warm sunny days every day this week and the same for next week, the mornings are decidedly cooler.
My daughter observed on a day last week when the temperature tipped 36 º, that in Summer she longs for the Winter, and in Winter she misses the warmth of the Summer. I completely understand this, and often find the same. Although the benefit of adulthood is that I can remind myself not to wish life away. The cooler weather will come, all longing aside. It will come anyway. And then we will curse how cold it has got, and will the Winter days to pass so we can glimpse the Spring.
As most of you who read regularly will know, I took all of December off Facebook. It was quite a revelation. If you’ve ever given up sugar or caffeine, I liken the experience to this. Withdrawal headaches in the first week, shadowy voices calling you back with temptation. December was a hard month to step away, with parties and lots of goodwill – and perhaps a toned down version of the internet outrage. There were a few times in that first week where I did feel that I was missing out.
Then I started being mindful and taking stock of what I was doing in the time where I would otherwise be staring into that lonely blue computer screen. I found time for art, reading – both books and magazines. I found an embroidery, buried in a box, that I started more than 20 years ago. It was a gift from my Mother-in-law when we still lived in the UK. I haven’t done a lot of work on it, but it has been lovely to be able to pick up, do a little then put it down again.
It is only when we stop and take stock that the important things come back into focus. My daughter is giving up the iPad for Lent, so I decided to pick up her lead and give up evenings on Facebook. I find the evening is when it becomes so insidious – it’s my down time from the busyness of the day, the kids are in bed. Facebook is easy, it’s so mindless that before I know it an hour has passed and I’m fast losing my evening to something I don’t much care for. The happy result thus far, is that I’ll have a quick look during the day but my separation from has highlighted just how inane it can be.
While I have made some lovely connections on there, and been able to keep in touch with friends and family who are not in my immediate orbit, there is a lot to wade through for these benefits. But enough Facebook bashing, this post is about taking stock.
So this is where I am at on this day in early March.
Making : time for the things that I love doing (well, trying to anyway)
Cooking : Jamie’s Fiery Dan Dan Noodles from the Jamie’s America cook book. It’s a good way to use bok choi, which I’m really not keen on, but it comes in my organic box and I hate the waste!
Drinking : right now it’s tea, but over the weekend it was home brewed beer, and some bubbles.
Reading: I just finished The Sunday Philosophy Club by Alexander McCall Smith, and tonight I start The Light Between Oceans by ML Stedman.
Wanting: a little something to nibble with my cuppa
Looking: at a gorgeous rose I just picked from my garden. (See above right). The bush is old and gnarly, and the roses are covered in thick thorns but it never fails to produce velvety bright orange roses. This one is still in bud. I love the anticipation of what it will become, and the smell is just heavenly.
Playing: with my four-year old daughter (well, in a minute. We are going to the park just as soon as I finish my cuppa.)
Deciding: How to spend the long weekend in Melbourne. We are contemplating a camping trip but I am also keen on a slow weekend pottering around the house, mornings in pjs and pots of tea in bed.
Wishing: that this weather would last forever. It is my perfect climate, sunny and warm, but cooler at night so sleeping is easy.
Enjoying: being back into reading, and making time in the evening for reading.
Waiting: for my second round of home grown strawberries to ripen
Liking: growing my own strawberries. There has not been an abundance, perhaps one or two a day, but we split them five ways and all enjoy a slither. I feel like Charlie from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Oh, the sweetness…
Wondering: what 2017 has in store
Loving: getting to know our new chooks – we have four of them. And they are funny little things.
Pondering: how I can get more organised, why siblings fight so much and how I can tune out from that.
Considering: going for an after dinner walk. The sun is shining till late in the evening at the moment and it’s an opportunity to claim half an hour for myself.
Buying: not too much but considering a new couch. Our current couch is 15 years old and was bought pre-kids, but now that there are five of us, we don’t all fit on it.
Watching: The Crown – just so good.
Hoping: to spend more time in our art room – maybe over the long weekend.
Marvelling: at how my eight year old son can continue to talk non-stop without drawing breath.
Cringing: at my Kath & Kim dancing on Saturday night. Fun at the time though…
Needing: a nana nap. And a slower pace of life.
Questioning: our way of life, we seem to chase our tails working, earning, spending…
Smelling: my gorgeous home-grown rose.
Wearing: shorts and a t-shirt, it’s 28C and sunny.
Following: lots of England-based people on Instagram, which is making me pine for the mother-land…
Noticing: how tired I feel right now.
Knowing: that we are all doing the best we can.
Thinking: that kindness costs nothing and it can make the world of difference.
Admiring: lots of artists on Instagram
Sorting: dinner out – the kids are excited about the fiery Dan Dan noodles
Getting: excited about planning our trip to Vietnam in July (recommendations please!).
Bookmarking: not much actually, it’s amazing how much less online reading I do since disengaging from Facebook.
Coveting: not much, but maybe that new couch
Disliking: all the running around and chasing of our tails
Opening: a new book tonight – excited!
Giggling: at my funny little chooks.
Feeling: thankful for the day I’ve had.
Snacking: hmmm, perhaps some cheese and crackers, or some nuts. I didn’t realise I was so hungry!
Helping: my son with his home work – this is his first year of homework and it’s been a bit overwhelming.
Hearing: my kids chatter (and not fight!)
What’s been happening for you?