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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Monthly "Big Rocks"

At the beginning of this year, I posted a bit about rhythm, reverence and time and getting my "Big Rocks " in my jar first. I started with the largest rocks first: the semi-annual ones. For my family, those are the seasonal observances and celebrations relating to the church year. I want these to be what we plan our family activities around, because I believe the church seasons help to shape our theology in important ways. They provide our family rhythm and instill reverence toward the the right things: God and His Church.

Now, I need to spend some time thinking and planning the monthly "big rocks". These are: My personal hobbies; Enjoy God's Creation with family; and Creative, Cultural, Educational events for myself and for the whole family. It is easy to want to do these types of things, but life sometimes just happens and this stuff never gets planned. In my world, if it doesn't get planned, it doesn't get done.

So, I look at the things that are important to meet each of these needs and determine when and how they'll happen. Each "rock" won't happen every week and maybe not even every month. But a plan will help set aside the time to see that they do happen with some regularity. Otherwise, I'll wake up on January 1, 2009 disappointed that I still have not finished that (fill-in the blank with favorite hobby project) done or make it to my local museum.

Here's my basic plan for these monthly "rocks":

  • Decide what creative pursuits are the most important to me and my family, and what hobbies I actually have the money, time and space to accomplish. There are many things I enjoy doing, but there is only so much room in the jar, after all! The creative pursuits I've chosen to focus on this year are: scrapbooking, crochet, and photography. I also enjoy sketching, but I'm able to work that in while doing art with my kids. Scrapbooking is the one that seems the hardest for me to accomplish. I've decided to set aside one weekend day each month to spend working on those scrapbooks. This should help me keep this year's up to date. Maybe I'll even be able to catch up from years' past.
  • Look at our calendar and determine what days we have that make sense to set aside for family "nature days". Hubby in particular is a "nature nut", so I like to save these for when he has a day off or on weekends.

  • I've discovered that my local Arts League has a weekly email alert to notify me of upcoming events. I can look over their listings and decide what I might like to take part in. (Many museums, science centers, arts organizations are utilizing email for similar alerts. Check this out in your town!) I'm going to select events each month or so to attend with the family. This month's is an exhibit of Chinese porcelain. The museum hosting this exhibit has FREE admission on Tuesdays from 5-10pm.
  • Another important aspect is planning some regular cultural or creative time for myself. If I don't plan these ahead of time, I'll never actually take the time to enjoy taking a day to shoot some film or do some sketching, visiting a museum, or attending a concert, play, or lecture. Each month I'm going to plan to take do something along these lines - by myself or with friends (or hubby).

That's my plan, how about you?