Finding balance in a chaotic world

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Summer is Drawing to a Close

WatermelonRight now in Oklahoma the highs are in the 100 degree mark. The radio talks about “heat alerts” and “ozone alerts” which basically means, it is really freaking hot out. So it is funny to think of summer as coming to a close, but in about two weeks my little girl will be going off to First grade. New school supplies have been purchased, tags have been cut off clothes, and a new backpack complete with little hanging monkey has appeared in the house. More noticeably, we have no major plans for the remaining few weeks. So in thinking about the end of summer I realized it was a perfect time to plant a milestone here and look back at the summer.

 

I really want my kids to experience a variety of things as a family. Of course it is much easier right now when they are still small and do everything we ask of them. As the kids get older, the family time will become a little more difficult to schedule. With this in mind, I really want to take advantage of the opportunities I have right now. So looking back there were a number of fun things we did together and I hope that the memories of at least some of them will stick in the kids mind.

 

It is also a chance for me to look back at the year so far, what with it being half over, and check on how I’m doing in what I hoped to accomplish this year. Since instituting the “people of action” mantra, I have found that Amy and I are more proactive than we used to be. I noticed that on occasion, my car key would get stuck in the ignition. Normally, I’d ignore it until I needed a pair of pliers to pull it out and then get a new one made, but this time I took care of it almost immediately. Unfortunately my new key is about a third larger than the old key, which was practically a sword already. Still it slides in and out like butter. I also took my post about objects in motion staying in motion and accomplished about eight different tasks on Saturday morning. It felt good to make progress on so many little things.

 

Secondarily, I’ve started teaching again at the Community College. It is sporadic and tiring but it is something I’ve enjoyed and I hope to do more of it in the future. My first job out of college was teaching software to adults and I realized how much I missed it.

 

Unfortunately, not everything has gone according to plan. I still do not have a literary agent for my novel, although I do keep sending out query letters. Probably the biggest blotch on this year is the fact that the Porsche is still sitting in the garage immobile. See, I have this Porsche kit car that I helped my Dad build. He wanted to get rid of it, so I took it. Unfortunately there were some engine issues that I tried to fix with varying degrees of success, mostly failure. I recruited a friend and he eventually was able to get it to run, although it stalls a lot. It has been a couple of years since that and I have not worked on it since. I told myself that this spring I would get it running, but spring turned to summer and nothing has been done. Right now it is holding all of the things we are selling in our annual neighborhood garage sale so I’ve told myself that after the garage sale in September, I will get the car running smoothly.

 

And this is the crux of my post today. The year will be half over this Thursday. Take stock in what you have done this year and look at both your successes and your failures. For the successes, revel in them. It took work to be successful in something so take the moment to enjoy it. For the failures, look at them objectively and try to determine why the failure happened. For me, I truly believe that my queries are just not hitting the right people at the right time. The Porsche is a little more complicated but ultimately it stems back to my fear of failure. If I never try to fix it, I can’t fail. Once you identify why you are failing, you can take the steps necessary to move back on track.

 

So welcome to the end of summer and the halfway point of the year. Take a look back and chart what has happened to you this year.  Make any adjustments necessary and forge ahead for the rest of the year. Make this year the best you have ever had.