all the things

Excuses

It’s November 7th as I’m writing this. We just moved into our new home. It is slowly becoming livable, though I have no idea where my winter hat is and our guest room is filled with boxes and bags.

It is exactly 3 weeks until Thanksgiving, and there is less than a month between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year. Every day on my morning jog, I find myself in a tizzy thinking about Thanksgiving, Christmas, gift giving and celebrating and all the rest of the holiday madness. When Tamara woke up this morning, I greeted her with a conversation about Christmas gifting and scheduling, which she was pretty gracious about for a 5:30 AM topic choice.

So life is still in boxes, there are one million things to do at the new house, the holidays are creeping closer and closer, and Tamara is still extremely busy with wrapping things up at the farm.

In case you haven’t noticed, this post has so far been just a list of excuses for why I didn’t stick to my blogging schedule this week. It’s Thursday and there was no post on Playful + Peaceful on Tuesday.

It definitely bothers me when I get away from my blogging schedule. In a way, neglecting my blogging schedule is like a little signpost for me, a signal to let me know that life is getting a little too crazy and I’m not taking enough time to write and reflect.

My best time to write is in the morning. I’ve been waking up at around 4:30 every day and going for a short jog, which has been wonderful. I’m not running very fast, but I’m doing it consistently and that feels great.

Then, I get back from my run, and I get ready for work, and then – I get distracted.

The thing is – setting up a new household, or even just maintaining basic cleanliness in your home, is SO MUCH WORK.

I should know this already, right?  But it’s sort of new territory for me. For the last four years, we’ve lived in a two hundred year old farmhouse. It was charming and cozy, and also muddy and cobwebby and impossible to clean thoroughly. And – we lived on a farm!  Even if I did scrub everything every day, nothing ever looked clean and it would get grubby and muddy again within a day. Plus, we were full-time working parents with two kids under three. So cleaning was always a much lower priority for us than it was for other adults.

I didn’t mind the clutter and dirtiness too much, but I do think it represented a sort of low grade stress that was always present for me. At any moment, I could think to myself, I really should be washing dishes or sweeping the floor right now. So even if I intentionally chose to write instead of doing the dishes, the dishes were still taking up some mental space in my brain, and that  didn’t feel great.

Our new house is pretty freaking new. It was completely remodeled by the last owners, it has beautiful new carpet and hardwood floors, and when you clean things up, they really look clean. Tamara and I talked a lot before the move about new habits we wanted to adopt – things as simple as cleaning the kitchen after dinner. We’ve been doing a pretty decent job of sticking to our new habits – keeping areas clean, sweeping, wiping down surfaces, keeping on top of the laundry. And all of this is going to get way more manageable when Tamara is done with the farming season, because she’ll be at home with the boys and have more bandwidth for household chores and tasks. Plus, will be less of a cluster once we actually hang up bathroom cabinets and have a place for everything we own. But man – it really does take up time to keep things tidy and to clean things up when you’re done.

So sometimes, it’s five in the morning, and I could write, but I find myself unloading the dishwasher instead. And that’s been okay for these two crazy weeks since Moving Day.

But really? It’s time for that to stop.

When I wake up at 4:30 a.m., that’s my time. I want to run, and then I want to write. After those are done, and I’ve gotten dressed and ready for my day – then I will empty the dishwasher. I believe in allowing for flexibility when big transitions are happening. But I don’t want to put off my self-care indefinitely, and for me, writing is definitely self-care.

I can’t promise I won’t be late again with my blogging. But as of today, I am back in business. Let’s do this!

photo of coffee cup on wooden surface
Photo by Ekrulila on Pexels.com

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