Friday, September 18, 2009

But I don't want to use my time wisely

seeing.summer.off

Each and every early morning for a few weeks, as I lay in the dark nursing Roman, while the rest of the house is still quiet, I think about pockets. Not side pockets or lined pockets or any other kind of pocket that fun. But pockets of time. I visualize our day in pockets of time, and what can be accomplished in each. Then I further think what else could be accomplished simultaneously if I plan, delegate and think hard enough about it. Thinking this way during the nursing pocket has proved very productive. The book is written. Still loads to do, naturally, to be completely done with photography, and all else, but I am so glad I can say that it is written.

small.gathering

We had a weekend in South Carolina recently to celebrate my sister's wedding, and we had a pocket of time to visit with some friends we hadn't seen in way too long. Though we needed to head home we chose to linger a bit longer and visit them at their temporary home on the lake. All of our children (11 between us) buzzed around the water in canoes, rode bikes in the breeze, fed bagels to the cat (bad idea, I think) while the moms and dads had coffee by the water. Because I wasn't at home, I didn't feel the pull into the studio that I normally would have, but just existed there for a while with everyone and didn't ask one thing of myself. The only thing I got accomplished in that pocket was nothing. It was the wisest use of time I've had all summer.

Flipping through the pictures of our visit several days afterwards, I realized that summer has come and gone. In that time, Isabela has lost a few inches of the dress that was made for her at Christmas, and she is edging dangerously near to becoming elegant. So sure-footed and curious. And after her begging me (again) last night to cut her hair short, that photograph means entirely more to me than it might have otherwise. It's her eight year-old summer-bleached blowing hair that is likely to be gone here very soon. At least a hundred little changes like that have been happening with everyone and I'm afraid I can't keep up, name, photograph or elaborate on them all. I needed to make a note here. Just to stop for a moment and write a little postcard to myself. I'm not really sure where this post is going. With Summer, I suppose. Away.

xo,Anna

73 comments:

  1. Sweet photo of a carefree type of day. Enjoy all of your pockets of time.

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  2. Congratulations on having 'it' written, and giving yourself some time over the summer to do 'nothing'. And I agree that edge to elegance is very close.

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  3. love, love, love the color/texture of that dock!

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  4. I know that feeling.
    It feels like you've lost out on something. I sometimes wish I could turn back time just a little - and spend my time a little different. I sometimes wish I could have an opportunity to do it over, only this time paying really close attention to something that slipped away in the busy everyday life.

    I guess it's good to take a pause - and to really be there and absorb everything.
    Enjoy autum

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  5. Time slips away so fast. Our children grow up so fast. It seems cruel, or ironic (pick your poison) that as we get older and want to cherish more, time just seems to speed up. Yet, as children, we want to hurry thru it all. I can relate so well to this post...

    http://minivanlife.wordpress.com

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  6. Thank you for reminding me to cherish those moments of nothing a bit more. Although, in fact, those moments of nothing are everything, aren't they? Silly how much time I waste on thinking about doing everything efficient, while especially the least efficient moments are the moments I remember best....

    Love the photographs. And congratulations on finishing your book. I can't wait to read it!

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  7. I'm glad you had a chance to do absolutely nothing, even if it was for a short time! Thanks for the reminder to cherish and savor these times with our little ones!

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  8. I understand writing a post that goes no where, the feeling that summer is over and time went to fast, baby girls growing up far to quickly, and the need for a few quiet pockets of nothingness. Congratulations on finishing writing the book. Hope the rest of the process goes smoothly.

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  9. "and she is edging dangerously near to becoming elegant."

    I like that...

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  10. Early in the morning is my pocket of time to visit favorite blogs... this post is a special-sweet one. Congratulations on completing the writing. I love the dress(es) and I am sitting here in the midst of too much to do and wondering if I could make that dress for my girl... her summer dress is shorter today than it was in June. How can it be? I know we are paying attention and trying to capture everything, and yet they grow, and time passes and summers wind their way and then suddenly we are somewhere else and the changes are everywhere... sigh.

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  11. I really appreciate your thoughtful reflections this morning. I have felt for the last year that my life is going through so many changes right now. With both children now in college (for example), I find myself experiencing an empty nest and entering into a new life phase. It seems my life has had many little phases/stages, but this is the first time it has hit me really hard and caused me to really thing about where we go from here, what I want out of the rest of my life, etc. I'm not doing a very good job of describing it.... Anyway, I enjoyed your reflections.

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  12. Congratulations on having the book written. Pockets of time can be bittersweet especially when you see your children transition from one stage to another.

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  13. We went camping this week in the midst of total chaos at home and with my business, little girl Pearl. I had loads to do; my daughter's first day of school, cleaning the house (I know, but it had to happen), regular lgP orders, etc., etc.

    But I cherished every moment of our trip because I didn't have the internet, the phone, and all the other little things that pull me away from watching my daughter learn and grow. Doing nothing is more valuable than busying ourselves with all the details.

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  14. you didn't have to make me cry! ...haha. loved this post.

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  15. I am glad to see other mothers that watch their children, with bittersweetness ,grow up! Keep watching Anna Maria!

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  16. That's a beautiful post, I wish I could hold onto my children just a little longer. Time slips by so fast.

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  17. You write beautifully -- and it seems so effortless. Thanks for sharing your thoughts here... I had always thought of little parentheses of time, but I like the idea of pockets...like perhaps then the images and memories get stored away, as opposed to falling through the two concave lines of a symbol.
    -maria

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  18. Anna- I love reading your blog posts. They are so insightful and uplifting. Thank you for sharing a piece of yourself with me. I feel like I know you. Like you're a friend not just a blog I stumbled upon.
    Kellie

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  19. That post is exactly what happens to you when you sit by the water...you enjoy, you ponder, you relax, it was wonderful!
    Cheers,
    Julie

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  20. You have put it so perfectly...pockets of time. I see my days that way as well. It's easy to do when you are nursing a baby. My pockets are about 3 1/2 hours long right now. My 10 month old will all too soon be an independent eater and my days will be less fragmented. But enjoy this time-I know you are. These times with our boys are precious few. Take care!

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  21. Your title pretty much sums up many of my days. :)

    "But I don't WANT to use my time wisely!"

    It's getting better though.

    My youngest is now almost 3 and while part of me is anxious for a "normal", less fragmented, schedule, I realize how precious these days are. They will be gone in a flash.

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  22. Watching them grow up is so bittersweet! I wouldn't want it any other way, but sometimes I wish it didn't happen quite so quickly.

    I'm sitting here now, using my time VERY wisely :o) I am holding my sweet baby boy, knowing that he will probably be our last (unless Someone changes my husband's heart), and savoring every second of it. Knowing, also, that it might make my life more difficult right now, but all too soon he'll be over wanting to be held all day, and I will only have these memories to cherish!

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  23. Anonymous12:23 PM

    Gorgeous photos! Is the dress from one of your patterns? Where where where can I get the pattern. So pretty.

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  24. As a new mama, middle of the night and early morning feedings were a big adjustment. Five months in, I have realized how much creative thought and planning has come to me during these hours. And the precious time with my little girl. Now if only I had enough nap time to create! But I know one day I'll wake up and see her as grown up as your beautiful daughter!

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  25. So very happy for you, to have something major accomplished, and have the time to reflect and record those memories of summer! A beautiful post, indeed, Anna.

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  26. Thank you so much--it's like you've written my blog post for me! Except for the part about the book being done (my deadline is in two weeks--ack!), this is so totally where I am. The pockets of time--only way I can think about the day and get things accomplished. The pull to the studio--so strong, making me neglect the things that will last so much longer. The hanging on to the valuable moments through empty time--my answer to staying sane. Congrats on getting the writing done! I hope I'll be there with you soon...

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  27. Love the name of the post, love the post itself. Good reflections. "Pockets of time" is a great phrase. Can't wait for the book!!!And this evening I'm sewing an "artist's smock" for my granddaughter's third birthday tomorrow--out of your oilcloth. She (and her mommy) will love it. I hope you have more oilcloth coming soon--it is one of your best things ever. Soft, supple, gorgeous fabric.

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  28. Well said. I was just gazing at my daughter's sun bleached hair this morning and it brought on a twinge of the sadness you describe. I told my hubby no sports this winter. No sports no classes no extra curricular anything because I need me some pockets of cozy winter time around the fire, playing games ,just BEING with my family. I read an article about a family who does camping night in the winter where they pretend they are camping and cook their food over the fire in their fireplace. Doesn't that sound like a good pocket?

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  29. Anonymous5:21 PM

    I so hear you.... last weekend I was in Savannah, attending freshman orientation with my son (always bittersweet), seeing him almost grown and confident.. striding along with other incoming freshmen from all over the globe both made my heart sing, but also to become heavy with a twinge of sadness. Part of the weekend I spent to myself .. wandering miles around that beautiful city and looking with a touch of envy at these incoming freshmen, also wandering parts of the city. I thought of time rushed through in our day to day craziness and how decedant it seemed to just be, to be able to enjoy the 'now.' Thank you, Anna Maria.

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  30. I loved reading your post. Made me hold onto my summer...just one more day. Although my favorite time of year is fall, I'm sad to see this summer go. I just want to hold onto a little longer. Thanks for your last post. P.S. Don't worry about Isabela's hair, it'll grow back.

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  31. wonderful sentiments. thanks!

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  32. She is elegant. And her mother eloquent. A beautiful post.

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  33. What a beautifully written post. Thank you.

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  34. i love your postcard to yourself. sometimes it takes photos of time past to remind us to settle happily and quietly into time now.
    enjoy your last pockets of summer.

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  35. Anonymous10:56 PM

    sometimes you make me cry. I don't know if I'm overly emotional or I just relate. I love every second of my day with my babies (who aren't really babies), our busy and changing life,fabric and so on... and somehow at the end of a great big long day I can't even remember what it was that was done. Or if anything actually was done. A day, I suppose. sp

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  36. Lovely post, lovely girl and oh just look at how long those legs are getting! And most of all I love how you appreciate your family and the times you have with them.

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  37. I think those pockets of accomplishing nothing are the ones that allow us to live life to its fullest. I love that first picture.

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  38. LOVE the image of "Pockets of Time" and everything it connotes.

    Also LOVE that my daughter chose some of your fabric for me to make pillows for her dorm room. Made the letting-go easier and definately prettier!

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  39. Beautiful words and photographs! I also often think about sooo many things when in the "nursing" pocket...thank you for sharing!

    Amy

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  40. Lovely post thank you!

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  41. Love the pocket of time idea. I have been so much thinking about living intentionally, using time well and as I am nursing my new baby, I think a lot about how to spend less time planning out life and just live more but with extra purpose and intention...my favorite days are when I do nothing I needed to do... not because I am lazy but because I am intentionally loving the people in my path well.

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  42. Anna Maria,
    i don't know how you can write so beautifully (and take such breathtaking photos) seemingly so effortlessly. if you weren;t a designer and writing books already, i would tell you you ought to be a writer! lol

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  43. that brought a tear...okay, many tears as i can completely identify with this phenomenon of time, children..our time. keep these moments close to your heart. they are gone all too soon.

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  44. Powerful words, "pockets of time" with awesome visual illustrations. Thanks & congrats on your upcoming book!

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  45. I love the photo.

    Weirdly enough, I've been thinking about hair in childhood. (I'm a hairstylist.) It's so carefree, the color is so perfect, and it's no-fuss. It's absolutely beautiful. And then we get older, and we do things to our hair, like having it cut regularly or coloring it or dressing it up each day. And as adults, we need to, because we have an image to give to those around us. But when we were kids, we were free and never thought twice about our hair. We let it be and we were nothing more than ourselves...

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  46. You write so beautifully.....very thought provoking...
    Rachel x

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  47. How wise of you to realize that finding a "pocket" of time to do absolutely nothing is just as important as getting things done. Women are very bad at allowing ourselves to just relax and enjoy life around us.

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    I can't stop thinking about this dress and about how perfect it would be with cowgirl boots on my 6 yo! Is this one of your patterns?
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