I love all the new year posts right now; everyone in blogland is thinking about what the new year brings. A few of my favourites from here from Sophie, Robin and Amanda. There is a freshness about this time of year that I am liking, even though when the alarm went off at 6.30am this morning I could have sworn I only just closed my eyes to sleep and these short winter days are just no fun whatsoever. I again regret that we live in this shitty climate – there’s nothing like ten days in Florida to illustrate what people do with their time when the sun shines and there are palm trees everywhere. Hmmm.
But, what happens this time of year is that I make lots of plans – many of which involve travelling and seeing new things with my little family. We are thinking about going to Amsterdam in February to see my best friend/my children’s Godmother Dawn. We are skiing at Easter – the annual trip that my husband insists on and to be fair, after all of these years, my children are now great skiers so I feel like we gave them that gift. Regardless, I tolerate skiing at the best of times and still can not do it proficiently no matter how hard I try! Then I am looking at summer and maybe going back to America but the East Coast this time – I might fulfil my lifelong wish to see Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard. We are lucky. The way our life falls together, I notice, is that we all work really bloody hard during the term time and then survive and hold it together as a family by going on trips in the holidays.
We have got used to being us four now when we go away. For many years we travelled with friends, especially where the kids were ‘man-matched’ with a buddy. But increasingly it got hard to coordinate everyone’s needs and now, we have done a few trips just us and honestly it’s working really well. The realisation that once children grow up and are teenagers, the days are numbered for family holidays and there will come a time when (heaven forbid) Boo will want to go somewhere with her friends!! Yep, so I am sticking in as many cool travel experiences as I can between now and that time.
More generally though, I get this feeling this year is going to be good. I have thought a lot about the writing that I am doing and whether, by virtue of my studies, I am now ‘a writer’. There seems to be something terribly self conscious about this profession that I am not that keen on. It makes me want to rebel, I don’t find that I long to be published and unlike many of my fellow writers, I am not obsessing over Amazon genre definitions and wondering whether I am writing a book that others will want to buy. I hope someone wants to read it, when it is done, but for now, it is an exercise in what I can do, what I can create, rather than being a commercial venture. I notice that when there is a commercial angle to what I write (and I have experienced this before on this blog when I did the oils business) my ‘voice’ completely changes. I don’t want that to happen again so I am trying to just stick with what I have to say and not try to sell an idea or a concept. If you are along for the ride, then great…welcome.
Another factor that I continue to grapple with is the on line world. I see my children live in this second world so much and notice that my husband and I increasingly turn to our phones to check email or whatever. Although I know it sets a precedent, I still do it. Although I know that it is an addictive past time to continually refresh the view of Instagram or Facebook I still do it. It really is a curious human behaviour. And I don’t think I am alone. In fact I know I am not; so many people write and discuss this modern issue. How much is too much? I have these embedded habits which all seem to revolve around checking status, of getting a fresh view – do I really need to be so up to date??!! The one exception to this is Pinterest, which still, as I am such a visual person, manages to enhance my days. But the rest…not so much.
Time to take stock.