Thursday, November 8, 2012

Need more... time

Kate writes:

"I'd love to get your perspective on how social media has taken away from the slow pace of life. I've just noticed that one could literally spend all day on facebook or any number of other social media outlets discussing whatever and looking at different things people post. It's gotten to the point where almost every business (this is how it is here in the US anyway) is on facebook doing advertising and just trying to engage the clientele. Such as it is, rather than discussing ideas with a neighbor over the fence, coming back a few days later with new perspectives, ideas, and having the pace of these topics going on in a natural way... with the internet it seems like your mind could be opened up to new ideas and even changed at the snap of a finger! It's something that I've come to just think as an unnatural pace of life and sometimes an unnatural way of learning although I highly value the internet for that (educational purposes, etc.)"

Back when I read this comment, I really couldn't spare the time to write about time (no pun intended), but now I've decided to just jump in and talk some more about this precious resource we (unfortunately, I am not free of guilt on this score) tend to squander. 

The internet is a magnificent tool for obtaining knowledge and information, but it's also an ocean you can drown in. It's so easy to get sucked in, away from real life, from real things that need doing. I sit down to "just" moderate and publish some comments on my blog - and find myself dragged into a discussion. I pop into Facebook and without being aware of it, am looking at photos of people I don't know at all. Just now, I decided to check on a thread I posted at and somehow ended up discussing aspartame. How does it happen? Something catches our eye, and since it's only a click away, it's hard to resist the temptation. 

Here we really need to consider what we are doing with our time; and, if we spend any considerable length of time every day on the computer, discern between information and relationships that enhance our lives without encumbering them, and simply "buzz" that entertains without providing anything worth keeping. It can be websites, forum discussions, TV shows, books, even relationships. Yes, please don't take this personally, but I realize we women especially are prone to overstep this boundary that divides healthy friendships from getting together (either in person, or on the phone or through the internet) being used as an excuse to delay the less appealing responsibilites of home life. 

Making good use of time doesn't always mean, to me, being super-efficient and organized. When the weather is good, I always try to put housework aside and go for a walk with the children, in the morning or in the afternoon (depends on the season - now afternoons are already dark and chilly, and are better suited for staying at home). Then we can enjoy the beauty of nature, and the children can let out energy and also do - what's that lovely term? :o) - some socializing, a.k.a meeting friends along the way. 

There are all the necessary routines of our day - work, food, rest - and close, cherished relationships. There are things that enhance our role as wives, mothers, homemakers, persons. And then there are some things. Some nice, attractive, maybe even good things that clog up our day, and each of them doesn't take that long, so we don't even realize how much we are bogged down by things/pursuits that can really be dispensed with. 

It has been a busy week around here. With the little ones and I sick again, and much work to be done here around the house, such as the new goat pen, I'm really quite glad to see the week drawing to a close, and am more than ready for Shabbat. I hope you too, wherever you are, have a relaxing weekend with all the good things - time with your loved ones, good food, leisurely walks (or indoor pursuits, depends on the weather) taken together. Perhaps some reading aloud - do you know, we are rediscovering the wonders of this cozy habit, not only with the girls but with my husband as well. 

This photo is one of my all-time favorites. No, these beautiful children aren't mine, but I cherish this image of love, of friendship, of brother/sisterhood, of a slow moment in childhood - just walking down a sunlit road on a warm day. There might be a destination (such as the playground) but there is no hurry. Children can stop in pure wonder and fascination to watch a bird in the sky or a bug on the ground, and at the moment, almost feel like the bug or bird. I really want to take such a photo of my girls too - from the back, holding hands - but each time they see the camera, they start doing the Monkey Dance and pull funny faces. I'll try to do that when they don't notice. :o)

And well, now that I've began rambling it's a true sign I really must be off. My bed is calling, warm and comfortable, and tomorrow is another busy day until all activity comes to a halt when the Shabbat candles are lit. And then... ah... we will truly be in another world, for a day. 

I look forward to "seeing" you all again!

Mrs. T


Olivia Coon said...

Aw, that picture is so sweet! For some cool fall kids crafts to do with your kids check out my blog. :)

Mrs. White said...

I really enjoyed this sweet post! There is so much wisdom here. You have inspired me to keep things slow, here at home. And to enjoy walks and pleasant things. Time should be spent in things that are cherished, rather than regretted.

Mrs. White
The Legacy of Home

Anonymous said...

Hi Anna...I loved the little picture of the two children walking & holding hands. So sweet!

I must say that Kate is right when she puzzles over the problem we, in today's world, have of a sort of "over-connectedness". I'm not on Facebook, myself, finding a good deal of satisfaction with the blogs I visit, & the acquaintances I've made that way.

How are you feeling now? Sorry that you & your family were under the weather. :o( The goats should be a great project...can't wait to hear about your efforts with cheese & such.


Kate said...

I'm so glad I asked that, for once again I learn something from you and thank you very much for responding. I think time gets away from us so much because it's so all-encompassing and we feel there is so much of it. Viewing it as a precious resource as you mentioned firstly is a good reminder for me!
The other key point you mentioned I think is only doing what will enhance us in the roles we most wish to excel at, which are often the things you mentioned a wife, homemaker, mother. So keeping goals for the day/week heavily in mind I think would be a good deterrent against wasteful moments spent on the internet.
Hope you get that good pic of your kids!