Sunday, 1 October 2017

October ~ Pulled in All Directions

Dreamer at the Fountain (c.1860-70)
Camille Corot
source Wikiart


Well, perhaps the title of the post seems more dire than it actually is.  September saw many changes in my routine and to be honest, it's been difficult to get a handle on everything and find a smooth working routine that functions well.  I'll get there ...... it will just take some time, some thought and a little organization on my part.

Celebration Cake @ journeytothegarden.com
© Cleo @ Classical Carousel
First of all, with the start of our new food blog, Journey to the Garden, there has been a change of focus.  I feel that much of my time has been taken up with it, but if I'm honest, I usually cook and I enjoy it, I had already been working on the blog previously to be able to get it to a point to launch it, so realistically I'm not adding much more time to keep it running. So perhaps time isn't the issue but organization.  Taking photos, especially in my part of the world where it tends to rain alot, can be challenging.  At this time of the year, I have to take them earlier in the day and on days when it's sunny or at least hopefully bright.  So much mental energy has been devoted to figuring this all out, it makes it FEEL like lots of extra practical work when it actually isn't.  Otherwise, I've been making my way through a copious number of videos on how to make a food blog successful which, while so informative, is very time-consuming.  And then the "blog-inadequacy" slips in.  When I started this book blog I remember feeling a little trepidation, but I had started the blog for myself -- for my own enjoyment -- so I wasn't worried about prompting it.  With the food blog, I have a partner who is expecting certain things of me (although he's very easy to get along with and we think very much alike, so don't get me wrong, he's great!), and the purpose is different .... for enjoyment, yes, but the focus in on growth.  However, I need to keep reminding myself of this book blog where, when I first started, I could have no viewers at all during a day, to now where someone is looking at it at any moment of the day and I'm approaching a quarter of a million viewers overall.  Growth takes time and I have to keep reminding myself of that. So once I have more knowledge and figure out some of the challenges, I'm sure it will run more smoothly but so far I feel rather overworked and scattered.

© Cleo @ Classical Carousel
I am absolutely thrilled with my Greek class and am challenged and excited about it but it's so much work.  Without daily review, it's hard to keep up, so again I'm starting to feel like I'm running to catch up.

I did have a number of little side trips that took up time, as I travelled through B.C. and Alberta to Saskatchewan and back again, then I travelled to Calgary, Alberta and had a couple of trips to the island.

And lately I'm having a block with reading that I rarely have.  I WANT to read and I'm interested in the books I'm making my way through but when I sit down to do it, I end up doing something else much less rewarding, like watching DVDs (which I normally only do occasionally) or cleaning or daydreaming.  Not good, but perhaps a sign of an overloaded brain.

© Cleo @ Classical Carousel
And thus, my reading for the month has been rather pitiful. I've been slowing dragging through Augustine's, City of God (trying to like it), reading a few sentences of Plato's Republic (loving it; why don't I read it more often?), occasionally picking up The Iliad (this is one of my favourite books of all-time; why don't I pick it up more?), thinking about The Last Chronicle of Barset, and re-reading (ah! Finally!) The Man Who Was Thursday because a group on Goodreads is reading it and I thought it might get me motivated. One thing I believe is lacking lately in the Bookworld is read-alongs.  Either I'm not seeing them, or there are less of them than there used to be.  They focused you on detail, you had a responsibility to read (at least I approached them that way) and they seemed to give momentum for other reads.  I wonder if some of the fall-off is due to the inactivity of The Classics Club, which I found used to give inspiration to readers but now seems to be limping along.  I'm not sure ..... what do the rest of you think?

Mystery Squash
I did not plant this!
© Cleo @ Classical Carousel
As for October, what are my goals?  My hopes?  My dreams?  To keep plugging away on the food blog videos; they're interesting so at least I don't have to force myself to watch them.  To keep searching for a job that fits in with my life instead of picking the first thing that comes up.  To keep up with this blog and lastly, which I should have put first, READ!

I was happy with my most recent post, The Great Ideas ~ Opinion and Majority Rule, as it spurred wonderful conversation, so I hope to compile more posts like this one.  Plato has been too neglected, so I must push on with The Republic.  I've decided I'm going to read Italo Calvino's If On A Winter's Night A Traveller and get through it this time, no matter how weird it is.  And I desperately need to finish at least a couple of the books I'm reading, perhaps Dead Souls or The Last Chronicle of Barset. Do I sound really uncertain and unfocused?  That's because I am.  So hopefully October will bring a renewed sense of focus along with a reading extravaganza!  Happy October everyone!



18 comments:

  1. I'm going to start doing a tiny bit of a food thing once a month, using just survival food. It should be interesting :-D

    I hope you have fun and get over that block...

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    1. Survival food?! How interesting! What made you decide to do it? It couldn't just be because it's easy to prepare ... ha, ha! ;-)

      Fun ...... I'm actually starting to have more fun even if it's only a few days after to wrote this post. My photos are beginning to look better and I'm finding more of a groove. Now to discover how to manufacture more time. :-)

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    2. One of the hurricanes in '15 made me realize that we didn't have enough food at our place to get us through an emergency. So I bought about 2-3 months of that freeze dried, dehydrated stuff that is supposed to last 20-25 years. However, I figured I'd better start cycling through it to see if it is actually worth eating. No point in having cardboard cluttering up the place...

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    3. Well, I have to say your unexpected explanation both surprised me and made me laugh! Enjoy .... although perhaps that's not the best word to use ...... lol! :-)

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  2. i get blocks sometimes... or maybe it's all the time: trouble reading books, anyway... i find books at the library that look interesting and after checking them at home, i often find i'm not interested in reading them... i think it's partly age: i browse from a thirty year old place but read from a seventy year old place... and sometimes i just fall into books: i'm halfway thru Scott's Woodstock now, and i just finished a Disraeli novel(i like his writing) Henrietta Temple - not one of his best... anyway, i imagine slowing down might help; not having so many distractions... lovely pictures... tx...

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    1. Your confession made me laugh ...... I often bring home tons of library books, never read them and bring them back. It's very sad. I've thought of doing a library challenge but I don't think it's a habit I can break. But least I know, I'm not alone.

      I really have to read something of Scott's. I actually feel rather guilty that I've read nothing of his yet. I have Ivanhoe up on my list but, like Twain and Hardy to some degree, he seems never to be chosen. Pity ....

      I'm glad you like the pictures! :-)

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  3. I really like your photos. It makes me want to visit Canada. British Columbia looks beautiful.

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    1. Thanks for your kind words, Sharon! B.C. is indeed beautiful and many parts untouched. You forget when you live in it and a trip is a good reminder!

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  4. I know how you feel and I have been going through the same stuff for last couple of months....bad reading months but I am hoping come October things will slow down a bit! I completely undertand the challenge of trying to keep to blogs going and me thinks you are doing a fab job...so hang in there! I know the pressure of trying to grow the food blog but you are right...growth takes time...so keep at it! I am still struggling with Dead Souls...I NEED to finish it and I am not finding any motivation whatsoever! Sigh! Anyway, Happy October Reading to you!

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    1. Work never seem to slow down for you. In India, do you stay at a job until you die? Just wondering ..... ;-)

      I'm struggling with Dead Souls too! And I don't know why! But I have City of God as a priority so the dead will have to wait.

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    2. Trust me Cleo, these days I get a feeling that I am expected to work till I die :( The last part of the sentence made my morning! "God is priority so dead will have to wait"??!! ROFL!!

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    3. I'm happy to have made your day ..... that I made your day, made my evening. If that makes sense ..... which I don't make much of lately .... ;-)

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  5. Just found your blog through O's page about her hens. Lovely blogs. I see we share a couple of the same followers including the lovely mudpuddle. I have now subscribed.

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    1. Hi Travellin' so nice to meet you! I'm hoping your name refers to Penguin Classics, which I love. I'm going to pop over to your blog right away and check it out.

      Yes, Mudpuddle is wonderful, isn't he? So much insight blended with a sense of humour. He adds so much to the comment section of many blogs.

      Thanks for subscribing!!

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    2. Oh, you're private and for some reason Blogger is not giving me a "request an invitation". Just so you know, I did try! :-)

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    3. i'm blushing now... really, i'm just an opinionated old crackpot whose better half won't listen to me anymore so i have to find op's to take it out on...

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  6. Crazy! Similar things are happening with me. So distracted, and then when I have the time right there to read, I choose something less productive and unimportant. But, hey! This is life. You'll get back to your reading. Life really isn't a straight path; it weaves from time to time. You just have to go with it.

    P.S. That's an amazing mystery squash! Don't you love how God works? So I sow and tend and kill my little plants all spring long. And then there's a seedling from the very same plant growing in a crack on the nearby sidewalk! My husband said, "See, you work so hard to grow stuff, and then God just comes along, and w/o any care, there's your plant."

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    1. I have to get a handle on things though. I tend to get lost in one thing and everything else disappears until I realize that I'm behind and then there's a mad rush to balance everything. Not a good process!

      Yes, the squash is amazing. I'm going to eat it in the next few days .... I'm expecting it to taste like a Delicata Squash but we'll see ....

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