Tag: slowing down family life

Seems hard to believe, but according to a poll of 4 students that I know, there are only 21 school days left in the school year. Really. 21.

With a few big events behind us, like the Austin Maker Faire, a few house guests and getting our house on the market, I am ready for some solidly intentional days.  I want to make sure that events, practices and obligations created are events, practices and obligations desired.

My goals for these next few weeks…

  • Each day do my own work first.
  • Ponder each invitation before saying yes. Be they meetings, parties, or other. Not always easy for me, especially when faced with so many exciting things!
  • Schedule in spaciousness.
  • Put family time on the calendar.
  • Play outside more. And really just play more in general.
  • Turn my phone off at random intervals.
  • Schedule a couple of “spend nothing days” each week. Not even for the money but for the freedom from consuming. And the freedom from the many demands for impromptu spending.
  • Write a note to my children’s teachers telling them how much I appreciate their love and devotion.
  • Do one creative thing everyday.
  • Eat outside more.
  • Find a way to celebrate a school year completed by each and every one of my children.
This time of year, things seem to speed up a bit, so I’m going to be attentive to really slowing it all way down.

 

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Are you free this Saturday?

It’s spring here in Austin, TX and it has lingered much more luxuriously than I remember it doing in years past. The cool nights and mornings continue to surprise us all and the heat has barely set in even by late afternoon. This week marks the first of the 90 degree days and we all take a deep breath in anticipation of what’s to come.

lucy hanging

photo by Leon Alesi 500poundleon.com

This time of year time seems to pick up speed a little bit as school calendars fill with all that was missed during the school year such as class trips and fund raisers and tests and end of school year celebrations. Yes, end of school year, as we recently realized there are just over 4 weeks remaining. The past couple of weeks have felt a little hectic here in our house where ordinarily we keep a thoughtful eye on keeping things relatively slow.

This past weekend however we took a collective deep breath. And we planned nothing. And we even canceled existing plans in exchange for nothingness. There were slight protests from the resident 12 year old but even she recognized the need to pull back and hang out and just be. So that’s what we did.

We ate meals together and prepped them together too. We had time for pancakes. And pedicures. And head massages in the grass. We read out loud and to ourselves. We wrote long neglected thank you notes. Cut out paper flowers for a first grade project. Picked out a potted plant for teacher appreciation week. Took walks around the neighborhood and bike rides too. Picked loquats from a neighbors tree. Found some mulberries down the street. Played tennis in the alley. And hockey in the grass. Spent two hours in the thrift store all together just because. And came home to write stories on the old typewriter we found there.

By Sunday night we felt ready to dive into this coming week which one glance at the calendar shows is equally full of spring time activities, events and obligations. Because of its nature, and its weather, and the fact that this season precedes the dog days, this time of year can tend toward the nutty. And we have discovered that if we don’t find some way to find some space in the other end of that spectrum, we crumble.  And we all get overwhelmed. And cranky. And we end up taking it out on each other.

So before it gets filled up with other obligations, we have penciled in some family time again this coming weekend. Not the entire weekend, like we did this past week. But a chunk. So if anyone asks, “are you guys free…” No is the answer. We’ve already got something scheduled.

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Check out the interview I did with Jennifer Hill Robenalt for her Blog Talk Radio show Soul Lab. Jennifer is a writer, mother, publicist, blogger, spiritual seeker and all around fabulous woman. During our time together we explored the link between parenting and spirituality. Good stuff.

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We have, available right here on our website, a free Slow Family Living workbook. It is full of the whys, ways and how-tos of slowing things down for your own family, connecting and truly enjoying family life. The workbook has lots of questions for you about how you do things now, how and if they’re working for you, and how you might do them in your ideal slow family life.

People that have downloaded the workbook have really loved it. Some have printed it out and worked through it with their whole family. Others have printed it out and worked through it on their own. Still others have printed it out, admired it, and then set it aside for when they can find the time only to have it get lost in the shuffle of family life.  Sometimes we all just need a little nudge – and that’s just what this Slow Family Living tele-class is all about.

In the tele-class we go through the workbook, asking and answering questions about methods you can implement in your own desire for living a slow family life. We get to the core of your slow ideals and from there cover some brass tacks ways you can slow down, connect and really and truly enjoy family life.

If you want to take time to find more time, the next class is Monday night, April 20th from 8-10 pm central time. Join us if you can. We’d love to have you. Simply download the workbook. Sign up on our website and call in using the code you’ll receive from us. It’s easy. It’s a fun format. And you don’t have to leave your house!

 

(If you are uncertain of how a teleclass works you can read about it here…)

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