I stopped blogging for a month to see if I missed it.
I did. A bit.
I didn't miss the time it chewed up.
I didn't miss the self-imposed obligation to post daily.
I had an undercurrent of dissatisfaction that was growing steadily stronger. I would feel inspired to post, but then I would need a post for that day, so instead of producing something well thought out and rounded, I'd blat out a sub standard missive which usually failed to impress me, let alone my readers.
I am inspired to write by reading. Everything from Roman legends to trashy crime. It lights a fire in me, and replaces the words I spill onto the page. But I didn't have time to read because each time I sat I was required again to write.
And I loved the community developing, but I didn't have the time to actually read the blogs of the people with whom I felt this kinship. Heck, I was even starting to neglect my real life friendships.
So I stopped. Enough. A month away. And it did me so much good.
But what did I do instead?
I made a canvas doll for Peanut. My grandmother had given me a doll kit when I had my first daughter, and it had sat unused in the sewing room for years. I finally dragged it out and cobbled together a very simple and sturdy lady, with a plethora of lacy undergarments and a horribly complex dress. Peanut loves it. I can't stand the sight of it, because I embroidered the face on crooked and it looks like it's scheming.
I made jam, another skill I had been putting off trying. I found cheap and delicious strawberries and some practically free mason jars, and made four pots. Peanut refuses to eat it, but it has had rave reviews from everyone else. I'm pretty sure Bug thinks it's ambrosia, and I would happily eat it five times a day. I gave a pot to my friend and a pot to my neighbour, and then went home and washed the sticky red remnants off my kitchen ceiling. (Posie, I'm considering that jam as my entry in your Olympic Food Challenge. I know it's not mussels, and I know it's a month late, but it's both tricky and delicious, so in my mind it counts.)
I've started teaching Peanut basic reading. She's taken to it very enthusiastically and can put plenty of simple words together. Watching her figure it out and actually finish (awl-by-mysewf!) some simple books is fantastic. One of my great dreams for my children is that they grow to be inquisitive, and love the words that can show them the answers.
Another great dream of mine is for Bug to be toilet trained. We're well on the way - she has had numerous successes, and about two misses a day. Unfortunately, for all her accuracy, she is very very frequent. Every twenty minutes frequent. There's not much time left in the day when a third of it is taken up by rushing on the call of "Maaaa! Wees in toi-yet!" Additionally, Bug has realised that a successful attempt brings reimbursement. I'm pretty sure that child is now 98% Smarties (you are what you eat) and I am also beginning to suspect she's gaming the system. Well, more power to her. As long as I'm not changing nappies I don't mind, and I'm sure the novelty of hours on the loo will soon wear thin. I hope.
We're moving to Sydney at the end of the year. We still don't have a house. I was reading "The Female Brain" this morning (a very interesting book, and not as short as Mr A insists it should be.) Apparently as a woman I am programmed to see any minor hiccup like this as a major threat, akin to a tiger at the door of my den, and stress far more than is actually reasonable. I concur with this assessment. I'm mildly freaking out. I'm in a tizzy. I want a house, and I want it by yesterday. I think it might be time for a cup of tea.
A cup of tea from my new teapot! I turned thirty, and this is EXACTLY what I wanted. Mr A came through, and I am one very happy lady.
So, to sum up, I took a break, it was nice, I kept busy, I am back, but I won't be posting here quite as often. Allons-y!