creativity

Every year I love the holiday season: the lights, the music, the time with family, and slowing down. I savored all of that this year but I might be enjoying the post-Christmas, pre-New Year's week even more. Chris and I have been in major decluttering and organizing mode this week, which always seems to find us after Christmas with the influx of new stuff. This year our efforts have matched up nicely with the stretches of independent play from the boys, courtesy of new Christmas toys. (Although there's been plenty of fighting, too!) We spent yesterday morning taking down all... Read more →


This month will mark eight months since I quit my full time job. Having daylight creative work time is what I dreamed of when I was working full time and I am still in awe that it's come true. Before I quit my job I thought a lot about how I wanted to structure my days when I had full control. I took the summer to decompress, organize, and tackle things languishing on my to-do list. Once the boys started school I switched into creative work mode. Currently I have days each week for work of my choosing. For example,... Read more →


Usually a resident on my bedside table, I've banished my phone from the bedroom. We go to bed together. We wake up together. We're hardly ever apart. To describe a relationship with a person in this way speaks of new love. But taken to describe another relationship, the one many of us have with our phones, the words betray a love twisted into dependency, and perhaps ring a bit too true. At times I could describe my own relationship with my phone in this intimate way, and it doesn't make me feel great. Even though I try to be conscious... Read more →


Making more time for my writing was one of the reasons why I quit my full time job last spring. I took the summer to decompress and to tackle my very long to do list – check! Now that the boys have started their school year my own writing year to be underway. I'm considering my writing year to last through the school year until late May and then imagine I'll take a break or at least cut back during the summer while the boys are on break. I put a lot of thought into my writing goals for the... Read more →


Here's something I've noticed: managing your calendar, reminders, and to-dos can now be done with a zillion apps yet paper planners seem to be enjoying a resurgence. (A paper planner is even one of the cheapish thing that can change your life.) This makes me think there must be many other people who, like me, are trying to figure out the perfect digital-paper harmony. It's taken a while but I think I've finally settled on an effective system using both digital and paper calendar and task management. The challenge with using both is that they have to work together. Otherwise,... Read more →


In June and July I have part-time childcare so both boys are home a few days each week. It's my first time doing significant and consistent solo parenting! Heading into it I felt both excited and a little bit intimidated wondering how much squabbling or other challenging behavior there might be. But so far it's been really great! For days at home with the boys I need some routine and predictability. So I consulted my schedule-loving mama friend Sarah Powers who shared a blog post with me that she wrote years ago about a "just structured enough" summer schedule. I... Read more →


Two years ago, Chris was able to take a semester long sabbatical from work. As a tenured university professor he has the opportunity to do this every seven years. During his sabbatical he explored new creative interests, including sewing!, had lots of time to exercise and eat really well, and to generally to recharge. He returned to work invigorated and with new directions to explore in his research. As we talked about what the summer after I quit my job might look like Chris had an idea: "You should treat the summer like a mini sabbatical." I loved the idea... Read more →