Monday, August 31, 2015

About Last Month • August 2015

Today I'm linking up with Leigh Kramer to share what's been going on for the past month

Earlier this summer, The Musician and I began dating each other again.  Time had tripped us up, and our relationship had derailed a bit - as marriages do - so we started making more of an effort.  Effort seems like such a silly choice of words though, with its connotation of tedium.  Our dates have been too fun to use the word 'effort' to describe them, but you know what I mean, right?  Sometimes it just takes effort to not collapse on the sofa at the end of the day.

Those dates with my good-looking husband have been fabulous though, and I put a reminder in my monthly calendar to make absolutely sure that we didn't forget to do them more often.  Serendipitously, I was out at dinner with my girlfriends right around that same time, and enjoying a goofy, laughter-filled evening when one of my friends suggested we put it on our calendar to have dinner every month so that we don't forget to do it more often.  So we did it.  We decided then and there that the third Monday of every month was going to be Ladies Night.

Which got me to thinking, if my soul can derive such satisfaction from scheduling more date nights and monthly dinners with my girlfriends, what else can I do monthly that will bring more intentional fun into my life?

Intentional fun.  What a concept.

So I began a monthly list to Things I Should Remember to Do Because I Love to Do Them: date my husband, have dinner with my friends, plan monthly family dates, and schedule a self-care activity each month.

August was the first month that I added in the family dates and the self-care activity, and I have felt almost giddy in taking the time to plan and look forward to these things.  We took the kids tubing on the Chattahoochee River one Saturday, took them kayaking down another river in lieu of schoolwork one day, and reserved a site for an epic camping trip for next month.  For self-care, I finally - at super long last - scheduled an acupuncture session this month and bought a ticket to a yoga workshop at an Atlanta festival for next month.

Intentional fun, it turns out, is what was missing from my life.

The rest of the month has been filled with the hilarious beginnings of a new homeschooling year.  The Princess Hazelnut has begun taking trapeze lessons, the kids have started their classes at the homeschooling co-op, and we're all finding our groove with the schedule changes (and challenges) of a new school year.  The languid days of summer already seem like light years ago.

What I've Been Watching

Absolutely nothing.  I have been spending my evenings either writing or reading, and it has been very restorative.  I go in phases though, so if Netflix or Hulu ever posts last season's episodes of The Good Wife, I'm going to pop up a batch of popcorn, set down my books, and binge watch to my heart's content.

What I've Been Listening To

Jason Isbell released his new album, and streaming it on NPR's First Listen finally spurred me on to purchase his last album, Southeastern.  I swear he's the best songwriter around right now.

I've also just discovered Elizabeth Gilbert's Magic Lessons podcast, and I am devouring the episodes that have been recorded so far.  To call them inspiring is to put it in the mildest terms possible.

What I've Been Reading

I just finished Stephen King's 11/22/63 last night (very late last night), and my mind is officially blown.  I could hardly put it down over the past couple of days, and it might just go down as the best book I've read this year - all 880 pages of it.  I wish it had been twice as long.


Lindsey said...

I feel like our society tells us that planning things is boring and spontaneity is the only good way to do things. But there is so much good that comes from knowing we are taking care of ourselves and our relationships.

I've been listening to Magic Lessons on and off myself. They're great and the perfect length for loading up the dishwasher!

Sarah Beam said...

At this point, if I left it up to spontaneity, I'm afraid I'd never see my friends again. Typical introvert issues, of course. ;)