7 Quick Takes, vol. 89

1. I’ve been having one of those weeks again. One of those weeks where I found myself out of balance, focused myopically on writing, unable to sleep at night for being wound up about it, and spending far too little time being wife and mom. Any time this happens to me, it calls into question the whole vocation, makes me doubt whether I’m really supposed to be writing, or whether I need to stop trying to live in both worlds.

2. And then, out of nowhere, a week like this. A royalty check, payment for an article, completion of a really good query class, two queries and a personal essay sent out into the great beyond, a not-quite-rejection from a literary agent, and to top it off, forward motion on my new flute collection with GIA. Talk about a celestial message that the struggle for balance is worthwhile! If every week was this good on the writing front, I’d be making a living at it. Then again, I probably would never sleep.

3. Okay, enough about writing. I’m curious, folks—who out there still has movie rental stores nearby? Because all of ours closed. All but the one locally-owned one that has no parking b/c it’s downtown. Anyway, being movie lovers with three small children (which means that we hardly ever get to the theater), we have been driven to something we always thought we’d never do. We joined Netflix.

4. We always thought Netflix would be one of those things that we never deemed worthwhile—like cable TV. We keep basic cable—the kind of cable that they don’t even advertise because their standard package is “family cable.” But after we gave up TV for Lent for a couple of years, and saw our life shift for the better, we called the cable company and said, “Hey, whatever happened to that basic package? You know, the $15 one?” Yes, we miss out on a lot. But the more TV you have, the more you feel compelled to watch, and TV is really not a very good use of time. And it shields the kids from a lot of commercialism, too.

5. I always looked at Netflix that way. I mean, how many movies do you need to watch in a month? If you’re going to be socked with a monthly fee, you feel compelled to watch a bunch. But I have to say, I’m sold on it. We’ve more than used our money’s worth this first month, finally getting to watch the last season of Alias (we watched them all on videos, borrowed from friends, but never got to the last one…life intervened) and playing 1940s Superman videos for Alex on the computer.

6. Julianna’s summer school ended yesterday, so now summer begins in earnest. No more cute schoolbus moments till fall, and then Alex will be going to school, too. Six weeks. Wow! They say in parenthood, the days drag and the years fly. I think that about sums it up.

7. I have a babysitter this morning, so I get to go out to the nature area and sit this morning. I definitely need to find some stillness. And then, I will come home and work on adding 4000 words to my novel. Sounds like a good day. Let’s get on with it! Have a great weekend, everyone!