There was a fire somewhere last night. The smell of smoke was thick in the air and when I opened the windows to check the fire was outside and not burning away somewhere else in the house, the street was clouded. The acrid taste made me feel queasy and I searched online to find out what was burning. For some reason, I wanted to know and was frustrated to not find anything. In a world where a news story from across the globe can reach you in a matter of minutes, it is still a reminder that there are some things we can’t instantly know just by searching.
Today is the first day of #The100DayProject which is run by Elle Luna and Lindsay Jean Thomson. Last year, I took on too much at a time when Austin was still pretty young. I am not sure I have any less on my plate now, being back to work and balancing all that, but I do want to a) focus on positive things that make me happy b) write something every day so I have decided to have another go.
I am finding my Bullet Journal very helpful in making my days at home feel more purposeful and less aimless. I haven’t yet worked it into my school life as the days go by too quickly and a simple to-do list on my laptop or my to-do list pad seems to work well enough. My BuJo is more of a reflective and fun medium that doesn’t fit in the hectic school day. It doesn’t help that I don’t have a proper space to work – I don’t have my own classroom and the English department office is, let’s say, somewhat chaotic. I need to carve myself a bit of space in there.
I am really enjoying working on the weekly Project Life spreads for this year. I am noticing that I am able to add much more journaling compared to the historic album I am working on (currently at July 2015). Our printer has decided to be awkward so I will either have to send off the photos for the next couple of weeks or hope that the new cartridge I have ordered will do the trick. I hope I can get it sorted as it is gratifying to be able to print the photos, write the journal cards and get the weekly spread done all in one go (and I usually manage it during naptime).
I can hardly believe it but this is the last week of term which means I have been back at work now for a whole half term (that sounds like an oxymoron!). It has FLOWN by. Working two days a week is splendid in a lot of ways: the working week is over before you know it; the preparation time is much reduced; I have a lot less marking. And even though I am not there every day, I still get the benefits of work including time with my wonderful colleagues, time in the classroom with the kids, a bit of money and a break away from being Mama Kate by being Mrs B instead.
I am still slowly working through my project life albums from 2015 onwards but I thought that since we are starting a new year, I would get my 2017 album started right now and try to keep on top of it as doing a week at a time is (theoretically) quicker and easier than trying to do it years later!
When I was really struggling with Austin and wondering why it seemed so much harder than last time (apart from the obvious things like me being older, Austin not being Evelina etc.), I realised that what was making it hard was not being in a routine. I was feeding him every two hours, on demand like I had been told. It took me months to remember that routine makes life so much easier (for me at least – not for everyone).
Every January for the past three years, I have chosen a word to focus on. Last year was Nurture – I did a lot of that but I also didn’t really focus on it like I’d hoped. The joy of motherhood sometimes means that life seems to be passing by, like you’re on a train and watching it pass out the window. You see it but you don’t feel a part of it. It’s a strange feeling.
Today is an exciting day in our household. We welcomed two baby guinea pigs called Pumpkin (a buff piggy) and Clover (a cream piggy). They are in a huge six-foot hutch in the newly painted garage and I hope they are comfortable and not too scared / traumatised by the whole experience.
When I was writing my previous post, I had not been feeling particularly down or unhappy. I was just exploring some of the difficult feelings that I had been experiencing from time to time since having Austin. I had a lovely response to it and for a moment, I felt strangely exposed. I didn’t mean to alarm anyone but writing my feelings out is usually how I process them.