Last time I shared a very brief summary of my life over the last year and a half. Now it’s time to look forward. Despite the hiccups, roadblocks, and detours, my life overall is moving in a positive direction, and with a little effort I know I can get things where I want them to be.
While I may not have gotten a full time position yet, I am valued at both my jobs and have been gaining considerable experience that will benefit me in the future. And there is still hope for a full time job in the near future. I have an interview this afternoon and another application pending. New opportunities pop up somewhat regularly, and I am confident that everything will fall into place eventually. In the meantime, I will keep trying to do the best job I can and keep applying as I see fit.
Though I am anxious for Avery’s assessment, I am also confident that it will give us the information and tools we need to get him to a good place, too. And through the process, I’m learning more about how he works, what helps and doesn’t help him, and how to be supportive. Being more understanding rather than demanding, I’m hoping, will help him feel supported, so he feels comfortable opening up and growing. My ultimate goal is to help him reach his potential, to make him happy, confident, and successful. And while it will likely take a while, I’m trying to be patient and do what we can as we can.
I’m unsure how best to help Emily with her little issues, and with other things taking my focus, I admit to not working on it perhaps as much as I should. I need to really get to the root of her concerns and figure out what’s really going on. I want to have a discussion with her, to try to understand where she’s coming from so we can move forward. But I don’t know if she’ll cooperate with that! A lot of her behavior is based on her mood, so finding the right time is crucial. That is so much easier said than done, though.
The house is still a mess, though I have been making little bits of progress here and there. Summer definitely set me back, but I’m trying to get back into the swing of things. I cleared off my kitchen table enough that we could actually have family dinners again. That’s a win (even if it seems small). And I cleared off my desk and the chaise in my library this week, which is another win. My planner has other tasks penciled in, and if I can keep myself motivated and on task, I know I can continue to see progress, however slow it may be. The kids’ rooms are disaster areas themselves, and the kids have pushed back every time I’ve tried to help them clean. I’m hoping that if I set a good example and get my rooms in order, then they’ll be more motivated to work on theirs. Maybe if they see how comfortable and happy I am in my clean space, they’ll want to feel the same. I hope anyway! In the meantime I’ll just keep whittling away and see how far I can go.
As for other tasks, they tend to fall into two categories: work-type stuff/personal projects and self care.
I ended both my businesses at the end of last year. This includes the Usborne Books & More stuff and the gift baskets/other gifts stuff. It was time for that chapter of my life to come to a close. But of course I always have to have projects going on, and new ideas always replace the old. I have multiple websites in the works, with focuses on children and library topics. And, as I mentioned in passing last time, I’m trying to get back into writing. I have a novel in the works that I started a while back, and ideas for other books. I also still have my existing books floating around, and I have several copies of each still sitting in my shed. That being said, I’ve decided to adjust how I think about my writing and how I handle it in the future.
When I published my first novel, I was in my initial “take charge” mode. I wasn’t getting anywhere with traditional agents and publishers, so I took matters into my own hands and self published. I don’t regret doing that, but I think I jumped into it a little too quickly. I was so anxious to get it published that I went with the first option I saw, and because I didn’t have extra cash lying around, I did it the least expensive way possible. I used the free ISBN number that CreateSpace offered (which means CreateSpace is listed as the publisher), and I didn’t take the time to get the document really formatted the way it should have looked. The formatting got better with subsequent books, but I still stuck with the free ISBNs, and I haven’t played with my options at all since I initially published. I also grouped my book sales with my other business, and, like I mentioned above, that business has since closed, which leaves me at a bit of a dead end.
Hindsight is 20/20, of course, and I’ve learned a lot along the way. While writing will likely never be my full time career, it would be nice for it to be a little more than it is now. I would like to actually sell some copies of my books to the general public, not just family and friends, especially if I publish additional titles. And I want it to look more professional. So I’ve decided in 2022 I’m going to set up a new company, with a “publisher” name, and purchase some ISBNs with that name. I’m going to evaluate my options for printing and selling and determine which is the right choice for me. Then I will reissue my existing titles with the new publisher name. That will give me the opportunity to reformat the first title, maybe redesign covers (I haven’t decided on that one yet). I’m even considering recording audiobooks! Wouldn’t that be fun? (I love audiobooks…)
So websites and writing will keep me busy in my free time, once the major housecleaning is out of the way. But I’m trying not to just work, work, work all the time. So I’ve been doing my best to relax in the evenings. I have several creative projects in the works (a Diamond Dotz picture, a crocheted blanket, latchhook, etc.), and I just grab whichever one I feel like working on and watch a TV show or movie. Unfortunately I’ve been slipping into some bad habits and staying up too late doing this, so I’ll need to work on that. But overall it’s been nice to have unwinding time.
I’m trying to get into healthy routines, to figure out what works for me and offers a good balance. It is very much a work in progress. But I feel confident that I’m moving forward. I hope I can keep it up!