In between overdoing it

Posts tagged ‘future’

Summer to Remember

summer-learningWe are coming the end of another school year. This time of year is bittersweet to me. I look forward to the summer, the less hectic pace and the opportunity to spend more uninterrupted time with my children. At the same time I am also a bit melancholy over the passing of another school year and the ever present march forward.

My daughter is entering 5th grade next year. In public school down south that means the last year of elementary school. With middle school looming I (as well as other mothers facing the same circumstance) am filled with fear and trepidation. My fear is founded in what my little girl will be facing. How “advanced” are these middle schooners? Will my innocent child fall prey to some all knowing 8th grader?

I remember middle school for myself. It was a really troubling, emotional time. Leaving childhood behind and embracing hormones, teens, boys and the need for popularity and acceptance. I know that very soon I will be left behind for friends at school. And I get it that is just the way of things, I did it to my parents who did it to their parents and so on. It is a right of passage. But even with I am still emotional about her growing up.

All those people who said how fast the time goes when you have children weren’t kidding. It flew by and as I sit here typing this I watch as another year come to a close. Even though I am saddened at the idea of my cuddly funny, sweet babies moving closer to adulthood. What ultimately gets me is that I know they are only mine for a short time. The time feels much shorter now then it did when they were in diapers.

In the end it is about watching them grew. Seeing them have new experiences and transform into the people they are meant to become. As I have mentioned before part of that scares me but that is the leap we take when having children. We know at some point while holding that baby in our arms we will have to release them into the world.

Part of why we hold on the past is because we know what has already happened but we do not know what will be. I think as fearful as I am about the future I am also hopeful. For some of us, like my sister-in-laws and their children, they come back to you. Not as the child that left you but as the friend you never knew you needed or that they would become.

The future hold so much possibility for my children. I will just have to sit back and enjoy the journey. As for now I plan on making this summer and each one to follow as fun, funny and memorable as we can make it.

 

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5 things kids have we wish we grew up with

kids todayA few weeks ago I did a post about how American Malls are dying. Recently, there was news that the Ringling Bros. circus is closing its doors. What this indicates is that kids growing up from this point forward will not know what a ringmaster signifies. They will not understand the reference to “a 3 ring circus.”

Don’t get me started on clowns? Is there no place in our society for clowns anymore? (I don’t mean the scary ones that hide in the forest and take selfies for Facebook.) Don’t worry I’m sure kids will be able to google the meaning of “Circus.” They can watch YouTube videos about the motorcycle stunt show. They can read a Wikipedia description on what a Circus was.

Since so many familiar icons of growing up are disappearing I am saddened by the idea my children will not have the experiences that I had. These things have gone the way of drive-in theaters, Blockbuster video stores and original Twinkies.

However, in writing this I realized we can get all melancholy and nostalgic about the disappearance of iconic

childhood memories such a “the Mall” and “the Circus.” But instead, we can accept that the world is constantly changing. What might have been treasured and meaningful to us might not have ever been as magical and memory making from our children’s perspective. So instead I thought to turn things on their head and  look at all the cool innovations my children have that I did not grow up with. Here are five things my children have that I did not have growing up.

Comic Books come to life

Growing up I was a total comic book geek. But at the time the technology to bring these characters to life just wasn’t there. So for me they could only exist on a page, as a drawing. Kids today not only get to experience these characters on the big screen in amazing visual story telling, they can also meet them in person at theme parks and watch them in there afterschool cartoons.

Be on a cooking show

rachael v Guy Kids Cook Off

picture from FoodNetwork

Shows like “Kids Baking Championship,” and “Masterchef Jr.” might be theatrical, contrived and well… crazy but they highlight the amazing things kids of today can achieve.

photo from Walmart.com

Have a real robot

This holiday I was floored by the amount of electronic toys available to children…one of the hottest, sought after and in demand toy was the Anki Cosmo. A real, mass markets robot. Crazy huh?

Read Harry Potter

When I was growing up there was never a book series that engage kids the way Harry Potter does. They not only made reading enjoyable, it make books releases an event. Kids (and adults) will be reading these for generations to come.

Information at our fingertips

Some might see this a s a replacement for true knowledge. However, the ability for kids to have access to a wealth of information broadens their perspective of other cultures, worlds, and lives. No more do kids have to grow up feeling like they are trapped in a small town, or forced to follow in their parents footsteps. There are no longer dictated by a limiting view. They have a window to an infinite number of possibilities and directions their life can go in. They can research and discover opportunities that might have never seemed possible to young adults who grew up in the 80’s.

A Resolution to have no Resolutions

resolution to have no resolutionsHaving goals is great!

It is a blessing to know what you want to achieve, make a plan and go after it. I spent the better part of last year trying to do that. The problem was I was so caught up in achieving a goal I thought I wanted, I really didn’t take the time to question if it was even worth achieving? Was this resolution something that would bring me fulfillment, contentment, and happiness once it was done? Would it really make any difference in me? Did I even know enough about what I was trying to accomplish to make my effort worthwhile?

During the first week of a New Year people get caught up in the hype of goal setting. We rush out and get the prettiest, shiniest new planner and hastily write down our hopes and dreams of what we will achieve by this time next year. By March the planner is at the bottom of a drawer long forgotten.  Along with it forgotten plans inside. For many of us when we make resolutions we get caught up in the idea of the infinite possibilities in a new year. In what the future may hold. I know I did.

Last year, I felt like I could achieve so much. In turn I loaded myself with resolutions. Gave myself tiny binding contracts with myself not to be broken for almost anything. So a spent a lot of last year toiling away to achieve these mental marker I though meant something, only to look up come October and realize I no longer cared about them.

Was it worth it?

I spent SO much time, energy and focus on achieve these self imposed promises. Never realizing the why of achieving them had evaporated along the way. For example the goal to monetize this blog. Working tirelessly I planned to creating products and promotions, spent hours listening to podcasts and reading books.

Following the advice of bloggers, social media masters and lifestyle gurus. But came to realize I never wanted to make money here. I just wanted to write. By spreading my focus across the board, things like SEO, product creation, web design became a priority.  Writing was not even enjoyable and didn’t feel like it reflected me anymore. Followed the advice of too many people who, I believed, knew more. I focused on these goal but ignored what my heart told me.

Also the goals took far to much focus and time away from family, and self care. Things which I intended to put more of a priority on. Energy that should have been given to my kids who need me went into the creation of a cookbook no one asked for.  Yes, I got caught up in reaching the goals I set up on January 1.

It is great to have make resolution, and set goals if they are focused, researched and align with what you really want in life. Don’t make your goal something you have fleeting interest in. Also, don’t make it

Image from fakeposters.com

if it will not bring you closer to the person you want to be or the life you want to have. Most of all, know it is ok for your goal to change as you progress through the year. Give yourself permission to adjust as life changes.

 

I made too many goals, most of which did not speak to my heart. Once I created them I felt I had to make them happen, even long after they weren’t a good fit. Who did I feel like I was letting down? Myself maybe. Was I less of a person if I didn’t not achieve a goal I no longer felt passionately about?

I am writing this post on the first day of the new year and his year I am trying something new. No goal setting, resolution making, planners or plans. This year, I am resolving to be without a resolution. Attempting too not remain in constant review of the past or over planning for the future. Doing my best to listen to what my heart and head need. [ctt title=”Trying as best I can to stay in this moment, this year. To find the joy in this life as I live it.” tweet=”Trying as best I can to stay in this moment, this year. To find the joy in this life as I live it.” coverup=”KP8Al”] Not pining for what might have been or wishing for what will be.  For this year I am going to let go of resolutions and see where life takes me.

Month 10: Dining /Living Room, Living in the Now

living in the now

I have spent the year working my way through “One Year to An Organized Life,” by Regina Leeds. It has been a more emotional journey then originally expected.  I have worked our way thought the kitchen, bedroom, bathroom, garage, paper organization, travel, memorabilia and kids rooms. (I skipped one month that discussed moving.) There has been a lot of emotions around letting go of things but, it has been enlightening and uplifting to clear our the old and make room for the new.

It’s hard to believe there are only two months left in this journey.  Over the past year I have come to understand the value of living in the moment and appreciating what we are in right now. Not pining away for what was (my children’s infant years, ) or waiting until we have the time, energy or money to create the ideal perfection in home décor.

This month we tackle the areas my family does the most living in. The family  and the dining room. Our house is small so we have to make use of all the space we have. That being said, we spend the majority of our family time in one of these two rooms. We do our homework, bills and crafts at the dining room table.

In the family room we watch our favorite TV shows together as it is the only TV in our house. When my children were born I made the choice to have only one TV.  Growing up in a house where everyone retreated into different rooms to watch different shows, I decided I did not want that for my family.

Not only did I want to monitor the amount of time and exposure my children had to TV, I also wanted it to be something that brought us together not separated us. Along with the sole television this area also houses my husband and kid’s gaming systems.

This has also been a surprising source of joy, fun and family togetherness. I know what you are thinking, too much time inside playing video games is bad news. Too much television and video games are unhealthy and rot the brain.

If these items are overused, like anything else, they would be bad. However, f the shows and games are carefully chosen and the time is monitored then it can be a source of enjoyment and togetherness. As a matter of fact, our game system has been a life saver on a hot summer day.  We have even played it with expended family on the holidays and had a blast!

So when I read this chapter I will admit to a little disappointment. I was expecting more advice on how to update electronics and store game system. And while the book makes mention of this, it talks about CD’s, music storage and even mentions cassette tapes. Maybe my copy was a little outdates, but who has CD’s anymore much less cassette tapes?

However, there were some good ideas in this chapter about corralling kid’s toys and making sure your children put away what they take out. This has worked for me.  I having already instituted a system of bins and baskets in this room for easy clean up and storage. The author also makes a good point about not going overboard with your baby pictures after they have grown out of that stage. This is something I need to remember. It also is important to change out photos to keep focus on life in the now.

Moving into the dining room area. The author discusses the need to eliminate piles. I am guilty of using the dining room table to house piles of stuff. Piles of mail, homework, coupons, paperwork. She suggestions 15 steps to help get these piles under control.Organized Life

One of these steps is selecting at least one day to actually dine at the dining room table. She says “What is the point of having a room that gets used once a year and is otherwise a dump site.”  I think this habit will go a long way towards limiting piles and bring the family closer together.

She also suggests doing a 15-minute elimination round of the piles to get rid of old newspapers and outdates items. Then box up the rest and transport it to the appropriate room. By putting it in a box, it keeps the table clear.

My big problem lies in a choice I have been putting off for quite sometime. The scrapbooking buffet. I have mention this on other posts but have been reluctant to make a decision as to what to do about it. This buffet has housed my scrapbooking supplies for well over five years. However, I have not scrapbooked a thing in at least a year.

So why am I holding on to this stuff?

I really don’t know. I really keep thinking that someday I will have the time and energy to get back into it. Someday, I will find the joy in the  hobby I once loved. But if I am truly honest with myself, I know I can’t fit it in anymore. I no longer have the desire to drag all of the supplies out only to have to put them away again.

Finally, I have to recognize that in the end it does not provide me enough joy anymore to make it a priority. Working out, blogging, spending time with my kids, those are higher on the list of things that fill me up and bring me joy then scrapbooking is at the moment. (It kind of just came to this conclusion as I wrote this.)

So I know to move forward I need to accept my feelings, embrace this stage in my life and let go of my scrapbooking supplies. Besides scrapbooking supplies can always be repurchased if I decide to return to the craft. But for now I must move forward in the area that bring me joy now. To let go of the items that no longer fulfill this in me. Holding on to stuff in that hopes the we will recapture a past feeling only holds us back from embracing the joys of today.

A New Step In The Journey

zen-still-life-1390074

Quick Note to all that follow this blog. Things will start to look a little different in the near future as I am moving off of WordPress.com to a self hosted site on WordPress.org. The posts will still appear in the reader of all who follow here and the domain name of Inbetweenmoderation.com will remain the same. However, in order to comment or like post you must now go directly to Inbetweenmoderation.com.

I will still be active in the reader as I still want to follow all of the great blogs I have found here. I just felt that it was time for this blog to move forward and grow. I will also be introducing a new blogging schedule in which posts will appear every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Sunday (also the occasional Tea and Cake Tuesday) I think this will help in my effort to produce more quality posts and better content for you.

Please know that you are all coming with me in my search to finding balance and moderation. This temporary pause is just part of the journey.

6 Steps To Help You Set Goals

setgoalsboard

Image from FeelGoodAchieveyourgoals.com

I have been thinking about goal setting lately. Since we are coming up to the end of the year, it is a time to reflect on all of the accomplishments achieved. It is also a time to look towards the future and what we hope to accomplish next year.

Since last year I had only the idea of a blog, that has added a new dimension to my plan for goal setting. Frankly, I have found that having this blog has helped my to achieve some of my goals. Being accountable  you, my readers, has helped me immeasurably. By putting my goals out there, in writing, I have found it extremely helpful in fleshing out what my goals actually are. Not just some lofty idea in my head that I have no plan to act on.

This is why I am using this blog as a way of mapping out my goals going forward. My plan is to take on goals in each of the four categories of focus in this blog, food, finance, family and feelings. I plan to do one category each week for the month of December and list out at least three goals I want to achieve in the coming year. The Life and Mind of Me also inspired me to do a quarterly check in to assess where I am with these goals thought out the year.

So now that you know my plan, I figured it would be helpful to review some steps in goals setting.

I college one of the best classes I took was a gym class…at 8 am. Ok, the 8goal-1171991 am part wasn’t the best thing about it, but in addition to the running and physical activity we also went in depth about goal setting. I found it an invaluable experience and even thought I don’t practice it often enough. It has stuck with me for most of my life. Here is the breakdown of goal setting for me.

  1. The obvious one is write your goal statement. Spend sometime thinking about why you want to achieve this goal. What it really means to you. Is it doable? Write it out and be as specific as you can.
  2. Make it quantifiable and measureable. Set at start date, use numbers, timeframes amounts and percent’s so you can determine your progress.
  3. Create a plan. What specific steps will you take to achieve this goal?
  4. Examine your obstacles and how to over come them. What challenges might you face in achieving your goal? How will you overcome these obstacles?
  5. Enlist support. Tell your family, friends, community, whoever will help to hold you accountable and support you in achieving these goals.
  6. Set up an end date or reassessment date for your goal. Be specific about what you want to achieve by when. If you have not reach your goal at that point, reassess why and adjust your goal according to the new information you have.

Stagnation in Moderation: 5 Things To Do When You Feel Stuck

stag

It maybe you feel stuck in a dead-end job. It maybe that you feel stuck in a stagnant relationship. It could be that you feel stuck and in fear of moving out of your comfort zone. We have all had times in our lives when we felt glued to a point in time, unable to move forward for one reason or another. The longer we stay stuck the more it effects our self-esteem and mental health, until we feel unable to take even the tiniest step forward.

I’m admitting to you that I’m there right now. I’m stuck. There are ideas, but they stay locked in my head and I feel there is no chance to move forward. So I decided to get together a list of things that could help someone who is feeling like I have been. Stuck.disturbing-water-1180557

  1. Remember the only thing constant is change -Whatever the curcumstances that are making you feel stuck, remember they will not last forever. The situation will eventually change. You can either wait until that happens or hurry the process along.
  2. Learn something new – Sometimes learning a new skill, trade or hobby will begin a journey of self discovery that will lead you down a new road of your life. Maybe it will help ignite a dormant passion inside of you.
  3. Be the best were you are – Maybe you could move yourself out of a rut if you truly gave your situation a chance. In some cases we start off with the wrong expectations and do not adapt when things are not as we expected them to be. Consider that maybe where you are is where you are meant to be if we only open our eyes to it.
  4. Look to the future– Setting up future goals might give you the motivation to get unstuck. Having set goals to work for might set you on path of forward movement.
  5. Make a choice– In some cases being stuck is an indication you must make a difficult or uncomfortable decision. It might be thought the avoidance of this decision that has kept you standing still. I know if many people who after years of same old, same old, made the decision to move, quit an unfulfilling job, or finally end a stagnant relationship. For them it was life changing and created the environment for a new and better life. A life they could never have achieved if they stayed where they were.
If you have had this experience please share with a comment. How have you gotten through it? Is there other ideas you would add to this list? I would love to hear from you.
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