Dog days

Happy summer everyone!!

Back in my teaching days, the end of June meant two months of sleeping in, but now that I work over the summer, it’s more about the shifting of routines. Instead of heading off to school, the boys head off to camp. We still have to get up, make lunches, and get out the door on time. No lounging about. Weeknights and weekends are packed with soccer, soccer, soccer. Summer often feels more relentless than the – dare I say it – lazy days of winter. Nevertheless, I look forward to spending time outdoors. Enjoying a good book at the pool, taking a long evening bike ride with the family, watching the sun rise and set at our cottage. There are things to be thankful for with each passing season. And it presents another opportunity to reflect and set new goals.

Our local writers/illustrators group, BNCWI (click on the super cute Buffalo on my homepage for more info), met earlier this week to discuss some of our favorite lines from kidlit. It was a great way to get some new reading suggestions and talk about what grabs a reader’s attention. After the sharing, someone asked what everyone’s writings goals were for the summer. One of my friends mentioned setting what she called “micro-goals” or small, manageable goals that keep you motivated and feeling successful. For example, saying you’ll write 1k a day may be too daunting, but 500 words? Or even 250? An hour in the chair is not always feasible, but what about 10 minutes? Is your house a disaster due to weeks of backpack regurgitation? (It can’t just be my house, please tell me other people experience the onslaught of desk/locker clean outs!) Tackle one pile a day. My friend pointed out that sometimes the micro-goals are what you need to get moving, and once you start you accomplish even more than you set out to do – and who doesn’t like busting through the bottom of a to-do list?

If you write, and need a little extra encouragement and cheer leading to keep you motivated, check out the monthly writing challenges on Twitter. It is a wonderfully supportive community. Or try Camp NaNoWriMo, which runs next month. Even though my July looks like this:Capture

I plan to participate. I know what you’re thinking, if she has enough time to make a visual representation of her life as a soccer/scout mom, she has enough time to write. And I do. We all have time for what fuels us, if we make it a priority.

Before starting this post, I looked back on my Spring intentions to reflect on how things have gone these past few months. I’ve been writing regularly, perhaps not as much in my WIP as I’d hoped, but I published a weekly blog post and recently began to work on a new verse novel. I’m also super proud of the fact that I got my website up and running despite the small meltdowns along the way. My health is good, and I continue to look for moments where I can simply be present. One of the things I look most forward to in late June is the arrival of sugar snap peas in our farm share box. It sounds silly, but they are so incredibly delicious that I usually eat half the bag on the drive home. Add in my favorite hummus and a good book, and you have the makings of a perfect moment.

So what’s on my to-do list for summer?

  • Read
  • Write
  • Laugh
  • Eat from the Earth
  • Soak up the sun

How about you?

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