Doing It Old School

Do you ever feel as though the universe is trying to send you a message? When many signs converge to point you in a direction you hadn’t anticipated swerving toward?

1. A few weeks ago, my friend posted a link to the blog Hands Free Mama. This mother blogs about unplugging, setting aside the smartphone in favor of connecting with her kids. Not on a permanent basis; just as a way of being in the moment. Hm…. (at this point I begin to get twitchy at the thought of setting aside my phone for an hour or two).

2. I left for my friend’s house last Tuesday night for our weekly girls’ night, and forgot my phone. Left it at home, charging. Yeah, I got twitchy. But once at her house, I quickly got busy, had some great chats with my friends, made a few cards, and actually got work done. Continued “Hm….” and add a little chin stroking.

3. In planning for the summer with the kids, I knew I have to put the laptop back in my office. I also know I need to give them a couple of quality hours of “Mom time” before I can ease off from them and do my own thing. Which means…being more connected. And less connected to the outside world.

4. I read this morning that Neil Gaiman is planning a sabbatical from social media for a few months. 

OK, that’s just crazy.

5. I recently had to take a few days’ break from reading novels. It doesn’t happen often, but sometimes I find myself between genres, and need a breather. A palate cleanser, if you will. Magazines fill that position for me nicely, and since I usually have a tall stack in our bedroom, which I have been eschewing in favor of books, I figured I’d take a couple of days to catch up on “Good Housekeeping.” Well, there’s some good information in there! I have been searching for a good way to degrease my kitchen cabinets and ceiling fan. With all the chemical research we have going on today, you’d think we could come up with the perfect thing. I’ve been all over Pinterest and pinned a ton of pins, but haven’t used any of them.

You know what (Hints From) Heloise’s favorite degreaser is? Ammonia. Lemon ammonia, to be precise, but I have regular ammonia in my cleaning cabinet, so this morning, I was finally inspired.

Picture this: it’s 2013, I live in an old house in the city, I set aside my smartphone for the morning, dress in cleaning clothes, and my husband uses an old-fashioned screwdriver to remove the fan paddles. I fill an old metal washtub (yes, really!) with a mixture of hot water and ammonia, and let the paddles soak. A few minutes later, I’m in my driveway, crouched over the washtub with a rag, scrubbing off years of accumulated grime. 

I felt like Laura Ingalls. It was freaking brilliant.

Now I have this incredible sense of satisfaction. My kitchen is brighter, cleaner, and I have a bizarre feeling of anachronistic accomplishment. 

The old ways are, indeed, sometimes better. I hate to admit it. But, as much as I love blogging from my Droid and well, doing everything from it, I suppose I know now that I need to set it aside for a little while each day.

Maybe I can even use my antique typewriter to write my best seller!

Wait, no, that’s definitely crazy.


About Kerrie Strong

Years ago, I chose to suppress my creative side in favor of a career (or two, or three) in science. This blog is filled with exercises intended to reverse the atrophy of my right brain. I hope you enjoy my ramblings.
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