Totally Enough

Do you ever feel like you’re not doing enough? Like, no matter how much you’re, indeed, actually doing…it’s still not enough? I’m wondering, today, what makes us feel that way. Do we impose it on ourselves? Is it our way to push ourselves to actually get stuff done? Is there a guilt complex that comes along with living in the 21st century (and the social media that accompanies it)?

I’m not sure about the “why”, but I’ve got some thoughts on handling it…plus, as usual, an update.

My husband recently wrote a blog post about his affinity for to-do lists. They work for him, for the most part, until he gets down on himself for not getting every little thing accomplished in a day. (I get it. When we first met, he filled his days JAM PACKED with accomplishments. But these days, when the kids hit the hay freshly scrubbed and well-fed, we’re D-O-N-E. Life’s just more tiring the older you get. It’s legit.)

I used to be a list-maker. My mom had a series of lists strewn throughout the house and, man, she kept track of them meticulously. (An ongoing birthday list, ongoing chores, daily chores, shopping list, errands, etc. etc. etc.) But I realized that I was taking up more time making my lists (and ending up doing more priority-driven tasks that popped up rather than the less important to-do list tasks, anyway) than accomplishing anything.

But, something’s gotta give. I totally need to start holding myself a bit more accountable – house work, blog writing, meal planning, the works. I’ve been getting by doing “just enough” lately. While part of it is because I’ve been in my first trimester and dealing with two little ones, I need to up my game a bit.

That said, I don’t toss around the word “grace” much (mostly because it seems to have a religious tone to it and that’s not really “me”), but whether it’s making a simple to-do list or keeping better track of what NEEDS to be done in order to ACCOMPLISH more, I hope to do it while allowing myself a little grace in the process. We are not robots, but we do need to find balance. And don’t we know, truly, when we’re doing enough? I mean, totally enough?

I think we do.

As you can tell, I have SUUUUUCKED at keeping up my posts here. It hasn’t even become an urgent “to do” or a guilt-riddled albatross hanging from my neck.

And I totally miss my space here. I miss writing for you guys. I miss writing for myself. I miss having the time to do it. I miss being totally excited and motivated to hammer out a post here and there.

I’ll admit here and now that it’s really, really hard to write for a myriad of reasons. A new job that takes tons of energy to make sure I start on the right footing (and I’m honestly still behind on projects and book shelving tasks, to be honest). Maintaining a daily routine tends to mean that my writing time goes to one of my multi-tasking duties or simple kid-raising activities. Y’know. Dinner making, bath giving, nursing, and so forth.

And then there’s our recent “big” announcement. It’s SO, SO hard to write when you have a huge secret bouncing around in your heart and mind. SERIOUSLY. I’ve still been writing weekly for the Thirsties blog and between pregnancy brain and a general tiredness (lack of motivation, ahem), THAT’S been a challenge to get out into the world. But on top of it, going through the act of a first trimester with two kids, general life stuff, and a huge secret left me completely tongue-tied.

But now (I hope) I’m back. I still have to put energy into the new house (and updates on the old one!) and hope to share how that’s going. I have plenty of thoughts about the idea of parenting THREE (?!) kiddos. I have some resolutions My voice isn’t gone just because I have a tiny human growing in my belly – I can simply be more honest and actually USE the voice now that it’s all out in the open. It’s pretty invigorating, actually.

Plus, I still have a “side idea” that I’m flushing out and hope to get going when I’m able.

So, since I’m writing this today – on my 35th birthday – and following my so horrifically-skipped-over 7th (and apparently 6th?) blogiversary – AND have this huge news about having a third baby – I’m hitting the reset button. BAM.

Going forward, I’ll do my best. And, as always, that’s totally enough.

Blogiversary 5.0

Holy crap, guys. Happy Earth Day! You know what this means, right?

Earth Day just coincidentally happens to be our blogiversary! Perfect, right?


I love that there’s a connection between our eco-friendly attempts and the ol’ blog. Wow. Now, it really IS old. Five years is forever in the world of the web.

Today, I thought I’d just chat a bit about this place that I call home. Meg, Acting Out. Meg Acts Out. Whatever.

I haven’t converted to WordPress. I haven’t linked the site up to a unique URL. I haven’t actively monetized.

I haven’t taken professional head shots. I haven’t glammed the place up. I’ve thought about getting a DSLR camera, but it’s just as much to get awesome pictures of my family as it would be to enhance the blog.

I’ve started posting a little less (I used to do MWF). I’ve even started to worry less about our number of hits (although I do find myself growing excited when I hit a certain modest number). I have no cares about whether we’re SEO-aligned or not.

It’s not that I don’t want to put the effort into all these things. As a matter of fact, it’s a dream of mine to focus on the blog and make it what it deserves to be.


But, instead, I’ve taken a small step back. I’m kind of taking after my husband, The Dorky Daddy, only posting about topics that I enjoy writing about, when I feel like doing so. We’re slowly but surely converting to WordPress (but, really, no hurry). I’m not accepting offers that simply sound like a commercial or don’t align to my values.

Ultimately, y’know what I’m doing? I’m enjoying it. I’m blogging when I feel like it. I’m not beating myself up when I decide to spend my night goofing around with my little boy or watching a great movie instead of getting that fluffy blog post set for the next morning. I’m valuing my outlet and using it just as that. And. It’s. Awesome.

Will I suddenly get a spark to organize the place into a more user-friendly, resource-based space? Will I start posting daily? Will I ever make a career out of sharing my ideas for living a simply fun life? I have no idea. If I don’t, it’s fine. If I do? Incredible!

But, in the meantime? It’s just fun.

So, on this fifth (!) blogiversary, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for sticking around and stopping by. It means the world that you’re reading, whether you’ve followed for years, just check in from time to time, or you just found my small section of the world.

Now, who wants some birthday cake? 😉 

Blogiversary 4.0

Tomorrow’s Earth Day again, and you know what that means! Well, maybe you don’t, but let’s pretend you already know that it’s my…


Yep! This marks my fourth year blogging. Pretty cool, huh? Also super cool that I share my blogiversary with Earth Day. It’s only appropriate, really, although I realize I haven’t written many “green posts” lately. We’re just livin’ it everyday, is all. This is one of my favorite weeks of the year, though, except for that whole “spring break is over” thing.

My mind was blown and I was wicked humbled when we topped 2,000 views last month — one day being the brunt of the views with 753…yes, in one day! (I still haven’t figured that out…and I MUST KNOW! I’m blaming a computer glitch. ;-)) Overall, we’ve had shy of 35,000 views. Considering last year we had close to 16,000 (and only around 6,000 [or 9,000, depending on who’s doing the math…which would be me…which means they’re probably both off] the year before), I’m floored. And happy. And, again, humbled. It’s just nice to know that I’m not just writing for myself. Well, I AM, but I’m not…y’know what I mean?

I thought today I’d share a story of my love affair.

Um, no. Not that one. Or any of them, for that matter.

This is the story of my long love affair with the world wide web.

When we were kids, “computer class” was all about playing Oregon Trail and maybe even typing a paper up…maybe. That was kinda it. And I loved it. My family had an ancient Mac that my dad used, but my oldest brother got to use it after Dad passed…and I don’t really remember what happened to it after that. So, our weekly computer class was pretty much the peanut butter to my jelly. Yes, I even preferred it to library. (I didn’t always see eye-to-eye with my librarian in elementary school. I am TOO ready to read Little House in the Big Woods!! Forget you, lady.)

Then, one of my best friends (who happened to be better off than my family; the things we didn’t wonder or feel weird about when we were kids) got a computer. It was housed in her parents’ room, and every once in awhile we’d be allowed to use it. I can still remember that god-awful sound of the dial-up internet screeching and crackling making its eventual connection to the outside world. I loved it. I loved it more than my friend did, so I’m sure I irritated her when I’d (almost constantly) ask if we could hop on the computer almost every time I visited. The obsession had begun.

What did we do on this oh-so-new contraption? Why, go into chat rooms, of course! I look back and consider how a) stupid and b) innocent I was about those people we were talking to from, oh, everywhere.

I started to save up for my own computer, but given their extreme expense, I just couldn’t swing it. Cue my mother’s marriage to my stepdad when I was in 8th grade.

Shortly thereafter, he purchased us a laptop. A heavy, square-ish, clunky gray laptop whose fan ran at jet-level propulsion speeds and whose graphics took an hour (or more) to load. Those were the days when we’d turn it on, go let the dog out, pour some cereal, finish our social studies homework, then go back to the computer to click on Internet Explorer. Type in site (Geocities, anyone? Monkees.net? I can’t remember the other chat rooms I used; probably Yahoo), continue doing chores, let dog in, see that half of Peter Tork’s face has appeared on the computer screen, finish eating cereal…and the beat goes on.

Eventually, AIM (for those too young, it was AOL’s Instant Messenger, and it saw me through high school and college before MySpace) made communicating with friends from school insanely convenient and faster than a phone call. I got into writing some Monkees fanfic and started researching other musicians I enjoyed. Heck, I even “met” some fans and for the first time didn’t feel like quite such an outcast for my interests.

I still recall the time we got home; my mother, Jerry and I, from Christmas Eve mass. I jumped online and found (probably from Napster, of all places) an old Bing Crosby Christmas radio show (on our fancy schmancy desktop — movin’ up in the world!) that bellowed throughout the first floor of our house. It was probably one of the first times my mom didn’t despise the computer.

Years later, I’ve logged countless hours, as have many of us, on several computers. I now have a smartphone — a thing that my stepdad predicted in the ’90s would exist someday — and a brand new less-than-$500 laptop that does far more, far faster than any of the $2,000+ models of yore.

Today, I still use social media — namely Facebook, but I’m trying to learn G+, as well as Twitter (on rare occasion), Pinterest, and Instagram — but don’t have to seek out social interaction with strangers as I once did. I’m far more guarded and, hopefully, wiser about my choices on the web. I still over-share (here I am, blogging!) But, I still find my time easily getting sucked up with articles about child-rearing, blogs about how to DIY your own art, and quizzes (things never change there) about which movie character you are.

But, what’s my favorite thing to do with the WWW these days? (You know, ASIDE from taking addictive Buzzfeed quizzes.) Tied with blogging comes…

Ancestry.com.

I swear, I’m 90.

It’s the weird “gotta find stuff out” research-based side of my brain meeting the romantic history-obsessed side in a glorious series of late-nighters. Yeah, the only time I can get much family tree-ing done in when Hadley’s asleep…um, and Dave. Generally next to me in bed. Snoring.

It’s an adrenaline rush when you start to see pre-Civil War (and Revolutionary War) years and names popping up. When you’re given extra reading to really LEARN the story behind the names, or when you realize that your direct ancestor is laid to rest at a famous historical cemetery that you’ve visited several times while touring Boston (or, hell, at a tiny historical cemetery less than 15 miles away at the old homestead…that I’ve never perused), it’s exhilarating. Looking up further web sites for information about historical events those names took part in helps the names to walk and move and even talk a little.

So, that’s what I’m doing thanks to good ol’ technology these days. What about you? How different is your computer experience today than it was, say, 20 years ago? Clearly, you’re reading my blog, so I want to give you a HUGE hug (you know the kind…the full-on happy squeeze one) and say “thanks!!!” with a tear in my eye for using a few minutes of your precious time stopping by.

While you’re responding below about what you’re doing on the Internet these days (um…I should say “keep it clean,” but I really don’t care ;-)), feel free to let me know what you LIKE, LOVE, and think NEEDS IMPROVING here at Meg, Acting Out. Any feedback helps SO much, guys!