Christmas is almost here, and I find myself relaxed these days, enjoying the Advent season. Are you harried and frenzied? If so, please check out my friend’s new ebook (it’s free!): Ready in Seven (as in hours!). You also might want to listen to our podcast (while you’re running around town), on Keeping Peace in the Home During the Holiday Frenzy.
I’ve been spending my extra free time (light on the schoolwork these weeks) not only crafting and baking with the kids, but carving out more time for me to do the things I enjoy most: Bible study, reading, crafting, sewing, writing. I realize these things are mostly solitary things; I am introverted in that way.
I’ve reclaimed my early mornings for journaling and Bible reading with the help of earlier bedtimes, alarms, and taking my baths the night before. It’s so lovely to have a goodly amount of real quiet time, before anyone else is up. I find hot tea a comfortable way to greet the day.
After the children are in bed for the night, if my husband is busy with other things, I gift myself an hour in my craft room. I’ve enjoyed this time. It’s quiet except for any music or teaching or podcast I’m listening to, and the sound of scissors snipping or the iron breathing. The bare window frames swaying fir trees, adding to the peace.
Whenever I’m tempted to go back to Facebook or the like, I ask myself which of these activities I want to give up in order to be online more. Or, do I really want to send my children off to school? They are home all day, homeschooling and wanting three meals and making messes, so I do not really have time in the day to pursue other interests right now. I find it’s a matter of reality (only 24 hours in the day), and of actually trying to live out what I say my priorities are. And I know our home will have a scheduling shake-up when our new baby arrives next spring, so I am especially enjoying my quiet times.
Recently I added lighting to my little craft room nest. I think I will leave the Christmas lights up all year; I love them.
Last night I created a cover for my art journal. I’ve been wanting an art journal for a long time; I love the idea of choosing something at the end of the day to draw or collage or paint that brings about some sort of memory of the day.
My cover was made with a paper backing, stickers, collage, rickrack, stamping, pastels, paint, and tied ribbons. I titled it “Every day matters.” Because it does. There is a book about art journaling with that very title, too, but I’ve never looked at it (it’s on my wish list along with dozens of others!). I got the inspiration and directions for my cover from The Artistic Mother, which is a lovely book if you want to dive into a little more creativity in your life (and you need directions).
This is a quote I ripped from a magazine: To be perpetually thrilled with life need not detract from the solidarity of your goals or the soberness of your purpose. (anonymous)
I’ve enjoyed playing with different media for my “drawing of the day”: pens, paints, pencils. I doubt I’ll be able to do this every day, but hopefully with a habit every evening of 15 minutes or so, it will become very satisfying to think on and give thanks for something of my day. My children love to see what the picture of the day was!
The way I see it, why wait for the new year to create a new habit or to encourage a new craft? I find winter is the perfect time to consider my ways and to think on how my time is spent.
Are you spending yours the way you’d like?