Sunday, January 08, 2012

Slo-Mo


Yesterday I caught myself up to my old tricks again.  The Girl was going out to meet friends in town, FL was off to the golf club to write his book while his pals finished their round...

... and I thought: "Ooh!  I have the house to myself!  I could make a dress... and paint the windowsills and do my fitness dvd and start a new pair of socks and browse for yarn for that new hat pattern I saw and read the Saturday papers and clean the bathroom and get the dinner into the slow cooker and finish The Years and finish The Dirty Life and organise my fabric stash and put up a curtain pole and order more paint and change the blown fuse for my car radio and hang up the washing and boil a bag of chickpeas and hoover the floor and look for my car registration documents again and and and and..."

Roo?  Hello?  What are you doing?  Will you please just sit down and breathe?

As Jessica put it so well:  "Just because I can, it doesn't mean I should."

If ever there was a mantra for me, that is it.


So I tidied away my sewing stuff ('cos it was making me unhappy) and sat down with The Dirty Life.
I cut a slice of cake (Raspberry, Blueberry and Lime Drizzle Cake from Cake Angels - yum!) and brewed some proper coffee.
And I read my book.

The Biggest Resolution  of Them All?

KNOW WHEN TO STOP!

And after everyone came home and dinner was over, FL went to bed early and The Girl went to her room to do Girlish things.. and I just kept on reading until I finished.
It is a very good book.  I like how the author is honest about her relationship with her man and with the land.  It could so easily have been one of those cheesey "how downshifting saved my life" stories.  Instead, the writer (Kristin Kimball) revels in the detail of cooking and eating good homegrown organic food (and made me re-examine my current choice of cheapness over quality,) while tempering the evangelical joy of self-sufficiency with the mucky muddy painful realities of life on a working farm.

And I realised that I had a lucky escape when I came here.  If FL had still been deep in the throes of his practical 24/7 farming life, I would have been a nervous and physical wreck by now. Instead, I have just had the opportunity to take two weeks off my city-based job and simply enjoy living in the middle of nowhere, walking without fear of meeting anyone else, reading a book for hours on end, and picking up my knitting when I feel like it.  I am really pretty lucky. 

And today?  Today was the last day of my holidays and I decided I would knit.  So I did.
That's a new sock on the needles, part of my plan to learn enough of the language to understand all those amazing Finnish knitting blogs in my Favourites folder.
It is the Portti 2011 Sukat pattern and I admit that I am really just copying the chart.  But it's a start!

18 comments:

Susie Hemingway said...

Wishing you both a happy and healthy 2012.

Clare said...

Sounds like a perfect weekend. And good luck with the Finnish - let us know how it goes!

didyoumakethat said...

Another description of bliss. That cake looks yummy.

Suvi said...

Oh! If you need any help with your language studies please ask! I'm reading your blog carefully every day and i'm also teaching finnish.

Minnado said...

You made me laugh - I can recognise my own behaviour on this post too, trying to cram too much in. The knitting looks good. x

Debi said...

I'm with Minnado...I totally see myself in this post :) Sounds like you had a great relaxing day!

christinelaennec said...

Your list looks a lot like the ones I tend to make! Good for you to concentrate on under 5 things in one day. I really liked The Dirty Life too - and I felt physically exhausted just reading it. Boy do those people work HARD. I remember reading a theory that one reason people in the US were/are so overweight, generally, is that they still eat the meals their farming ancestors ate - without doing a tenth of the exertion.

And that sock is stunning! Finnish did you say! Whoa... good thing you just happen to have an online tutor now!

I'm so glad you've had a good holiday break. No-one deserves it more, Roobeedoo!

Linda said...

You're the first British person I've encountered who also wants to learn Finnish. It's my number one new language that I want to learn, tho not so that I can read knitting patterns, since I can't knit!
I have only been to Finland once, but long to go again.

blue hands said...

Ah! Scattergun brain syndrome! And it so often results in getting nothing done that you wanted to do, so well done for pulling back and choosing one manageable and enjoyable activity. xx

Lynne said...

Oh I so agree! That is something I would do to. You definately found the best way to spend your day, your sock rocks!!

Annec said...

A sequel to Jessica's quote:
Bliss is having lots to do, and not doing it...

I'm blissed out quite a lot... ;-P

Annie said...

Loving Anniec's bliss quote! And you're right of course, knowing when to stop is the key to happiness. So I have adopted Jessica's quote as my new mantra ... do you think I can get away with applying it to the housework ;D

mooncalf said...

Well done! My 2012 is going to be about learning to slow down too. Good luck!

Evie said...

I do that enormous list thing every single day. I think it's because the husband works and I'm a housewife that I think I must be busy every single second doing something that adds something to the quality of our lives.

Perhaps this will be the year that I realise that taking the time just to be will make me less stressed and therefore more like the mother and wife I want to be.

Thank you for the reminder.

Scruffybadger said...

Roo, it is a perfect day. Allowing yourself off the hook and time to read feels so self indulgent but it's not really. It's just good for the soul! I think that you need to have two weeks off to get to this point by the way. In only a week i dont think you truly clock off, and i like to keep busy with all the lovely things i could do ....too desperate to use the time "productively". Well done. Hope you feel ready and rested.

daisydonut said...

I do exactly the same thing myself - deny myself the pleasure of an afternoon watching a film or reading a book because of the long list of "should be doings" in my head. I'm going to copy Jessica's comment onto the front of my list pad!

Sounds as if you had a wonderful afternoon doing just exactly as you pleased, and I love your new sock project, how wonderful to have little people dancing on your feet!

Sandy said...

So often the 'homemaker' tends to act as if the job is 24/7 when it should be 8 hours spread out... since it is not a 9-5... that leaves 16 hours for sleeping, and eating a lovely cake and possibly some knitting or sewing... LOL!

Anonymous said...

Why is it that so many of us have this same problem of trying to cram too much into too few hours? Lovely to see you stopped and sank into a good book with cake (looks delicious!) and coffee. Sounds like the perfect way to spend two weeks! To me, almost the epitome of indulgence, to just listen to what you want to do and ... well, honor that by just doing it. We'll keep each other honest and motivated to keep doing that this year :).

Also -- Finish knitting blogs? Oh dear. You are about to get me hooked on something good, I can tell. Those are adorable socks.

-Jessica