Of Sunflowers & Simplicity: I’m Taking A Break From Blogging

“Wherever life plants you, bloom with grace.”

~ French proverb

• • •

My word of the year is SIMPLIFY so I’m going to do just that.

After a lousy summer filled with rude selfish people, extreme heat + humidity, and the specter of the Delta variant, I’m exhausted.

I’m more than ready for a few weeks, perhaps a month, of rest and rejuvenation.

I want to make like a cheerful sunflower, focusing on positivity and good vibes as I turn to follow the sun.

Thus as part of my way to rekindle my joie de vivre, I’m going to simplify my life by taking a break from blogging.

I’m allowed to do that, my blog, my rules. 

I hope to be back to the blogosphere in October; in the mean time, please stay safe everyone.

And play nice, ok?

• • •

[Comments are closed.]

The One About My Change In Attitude & A Relaxed Spring Blogging Schedule

Plans change.

Wednesday’s post was the last one I had in my blogging files. Yep, for once I’ve absolutely nothing planned or researched or started. That is a rare turn of events for me, a wordy girl.

Then I woke up Thursday morning to find my WP editing page was different. Again. Of course.

Today I can’t help but feel that the events earlier this week were a sign nudging me to change my attitude about how often I post to this blog. Not a dramatic change mind you.

More like a sign encouraging me to SIMPLIFY, my word of the year.

So here’s the dealio.

For this spring, maybe summer too, I’m going to write and publish one post every two weeks, showing up here on Tuesdays [probably]. Nothing remains quite the same.

The posts will be my favorite kind of blog post, the ones filled with flapdoodle and twaddle. If we couldn’t laugh we’d all go insane, right?

Then with my free time I’m going to read what you, my prolific bloggy friends, write on your blogs. Not everything you write of course, but many things.

This relaxed approach to blogging will give me the latitude to stay in touch & share the comment love you all deserve– while politely stepping away from blog land every so often.

You understand. ❤️

A Simple Hello: Ms. Bean Goes For A Car Ride AND Returns To Blogging

~ ~ ~ ~

A few days before Christmas Day I realized I hadn’t driven my car in over a month. How very 2020 is that, I ask you?

~  ~

To remedy this situation I decided that we, that being Zen-Den and I, would go for a car ride to make sure that my sweet old car, now 18 years old, was still working.  She was.

~ ~

Inspired by the beautiful clear December day, we went to a city park where instead of walking, we drove around to see what we could see.  A different way for us to enjoy a park, but considering everything about 2020 was unique, it seemed fitting.

~ ~

A few people were outside walking, but for the most part we were by ourselves. I, of course, snapped a few photos to share here because what’s the point of having a camera in your cell phone if’n you don’t use it? I mean, really?

~  ~

Thus with this little vignette of a day in the life of Ms. Bean, I’m back here in the blogosphere with a renewed sense of vigor and, I hope you’ll agree, a snazzy new template for The Spectacled Bean. It was time for a change here.

~  ~

Also, for those readers who care about such things, I’ve decided on my word of the year. *drum roll please* In deference to my good intentions gone awry by things outside my control in 2020, I’ve decided to reuse my 2020 word of the year.  Yes, my #OneWord365 is going to be SIMPLIFY.  Again. 

~ ~ ~ ~

TGIF: I Answer Jill’s Questions Over There While Announcing Summer Hours Here

~ ~ ~ ~

THE JILL’S QUESTIONS OVER THERE PART

Jill Weatherholt asks questions, oh yes she does.

In fact she asked me to answer her questions, so I did.

Should you care to read my answers to her questions then click on I WANT TO READ ALLY BEAN’S ANSWERS TO JILL’S QUESTIONS and you’ll be magically taken over there to her blog.

Forsooth.

THE SUMMER HOURS HERE PART

Wanna know a secret, my gentle readers? Yes? Well then lean in closer and I’ll tell you one.

When I chose SIMPLIFY as my word of the year I planned on taking this summer off from blogging.  Just bug out completely.  Detach entirely.

However plans change.  Perhaps you, too, live in a state where you are still being asked to stay at home?  Well, we do and we are.

This is the end of Week 13, by the way.

Now clearly I have the time to post to this blog, but summer [in the northern hemisphere] is when I’ve found that personal blogging slows down to a dribble.  Plus I’m in a blogging rut, in the mood for a change, a simplification as it were.

Thus I’ve decided to adopt what I’m calling SUMMER HOURS.  To wit:

  • I’ll be posting my usual flapdoodle and twaddle here every other week instead of weekly.
  • I’ll be posting mid-morning, probably on Tuesdays, thereby allowing me to have a relaxed morning in keeping with summer’s mellow vibe.
  • I’ll be commenting less frequently on your blogs, keeping up weekly with the cool kids who keep up with me.

And with that I wish y’all a groovy weekend and a happy summer.  I’ll be here when I’m here.

LOVE ‘YA. Mean it.

Which Three Personality Traits Are Helping You Deal With Today?

Photo by Johnson Wang [@jdubs] via Unsplash

• • •

YEARS AGO I TOOK AN ADULT EDUCATION night class about managing your stress. The 4-part class was offered by a regional hospital and was taught by a woman with a background in massage therapy who was at that time working on a graduate degree in religious studies.

She was wise & funny. Delightful in her pragmatic approach to life.

To be clear this was not a class aimed at finding the causes of your stress or analyzing why you had this stress. It was a class based on the assumption that the sources of your stress were your own business, specific to your own life.

The class was about creating a “tool box” of positive coping behaviors;  that is, by learning to breath in the moment or detach from your ego or chant a soothing mantra or acknowledge your own worth, you could deal with your stress in a healthy way.

The premise being, quite simply, that if you know how to calm down in any situation, then you’ll do better at whatever it is you’re doing.

Is this not true?

~ 💚 ~

ONE OF THE TOOLS I REMEMBER FROM this class was the question I posed in the title of this post. We were encouraged to think about who we were based on our own particular personality traits. [List of 600 personality traits here.]

This was trickier to do than you might think it’d be.

To wit, we were NOT describing ourselves in the sense of our relationships so saying I’m a wife, a niece, a sister-in-law was wrong.  And we were NOT describing ourselves in the sense of our job titles/hobbies so saying I’m a manager, a writer, a walker was wrong.

While those descriptions of myself were accurate they weren’t the point of this mental health exercise.  They were considered a distraction from understanding yourself better, a way to gloss over who you really were.

NOPE, we had to state who we were based on our own self-awareness.  We had to acknowledge our individual personality traits whether they be considered a strength or a weakness, then accept the trait.

To thine own self be true, you know?

~ 💚 ~

I HADN’T THOUGHT ABOUT THIS CLASS IN a long time, but over the weekend I realized I was reminding myself each day to focus on three personality traits, allowing myself to feel empowered as a result of it.

I realized why I was asking myself this question and thought that maybe someone else might benefit from using this simple approach to stress management.

So in conclusion here is my answer to the question.  For me, most of the time my personality traits that are helping me deal with my days during the pandemic are: 1) I’m organized, 2) I’m creative, and 3) I’m perceptive.

• • •

What about you, kids? Care to share which three personality traits are helping you stay above the fray, cool in every way? Or if not cool, at least sane for most of the day?

• • •