in my spare time

During the last month, I have had an abundance of spare time on my hands.  I mentioned earlier that I have been trying to use it in more productive and beneficial ways and it has thoroughly changed my perspective on the way I use my time.

Here are the highlights:

  1. I love, love, love not being on facebook and twitter.  This was part of my Lent commitment, but it has freed up so much time.  A month ago, I would have secretly thought it wasn't possible to do without these in my daily routine.  In retrospect, I think both of them were overall negative influences on me - becoming more about gossip, popularity, and self-promotion. 
  2. Reading is a daily part of my life again.  It is such a satisfying part of my day to hear the pages quietly turning, soaking in someone else's knowledge, following a story from beginning to end.  Purposefully reading through the Bible has been softening my heart and reminding me of my first love.
  3. Practicing creativity is an accomplishment at the end of the day.  Rather than frittering my day away looking at other people's achievements on blogs, I've made time to purposefully complete something.  For example - I made this bracelet, cooked a double batch of marinara sauce, and worked on cleaning up my flowerbeds for hours (plus, anything outdoors is lovely after such a long winter!)
  4. Committing to building real community.  In the absence of online communities (see #1) and my sweet husband, I've felt a deep need to strengthen friendships and depend on others.  It is easy to get trapped by the mindset of "newlyweds" (when you focus solely on your spouse), and I am often paralyzed by the idea that everyone is so busy.  However I've found that once an effort is made, community quickly follows.  I've discovered that we are richly blessed with thoughtful, caring, Christ-like friends.    

So, that's what I've been up to in the last month.  Small changes are adding up quickly and changing my perspective in a healthy way.  It feels appropriate with the season of Lent - the spiritual practice of simplicity leading to renewal and change of focus. 

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