Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! For many of us over-achievers….we spend countless hours goal setting, planning, doing, then reflecting.  We repeat this pattern over and over until we are  perfectly oiled machines.  Sitting to relax? Going for a walk? Taking a nap?…Who me? Finding joy in the smaller things? These are not things that I have really thrived on doing in the past. I’d say, “stopping to smell the roses” is the kind of lifestyle that my subconscious has typically regarded as “such a waste of time.” Well there have been a number of red flags waving in my world to let me know that I really need to, “stop and smell those damn roses!”

I’m a grade six teacher.  I’m probably a workaholic.  I’m okay admitting that now.  Lots of teachers never admit to being a workaholic.  They try to disguise it in the….”Well it is perfectly normal to work 14 hour days for ten months! Why do you think we get 2 months off for Pete’s sake?”  That’s a cover-up.  So let me share with you a goal that I had set for myself at the end of the school year.  I decided that it was time for me to, “Stop and smell the roses” and to do this, I decided to “dare myself” not to do ANY work for the entire month of July.  Well I have done it! Instead of boring professional reading, and long-range planning.  I decided to play a lot more with my kids (Allie is 9, Colin is 4), go for walks, drink my coffee on the front porch in the morning, read for pleasure (not work), workout more at the Y, journal writing, and my husband bought me a trail bike. Heck! I have even taken THREE naps this summer!

Parenting is a wonderful job and I just love watching my kids do the things that they choose to do.  Sometimes I jump in – but it can honestly be a challenge playing as much as you’d love to when so many other things are also vying for your time.  Well over the last couple of days, bugs and critters have been the HOT thing for my kids.  I myself, used to love critters , so this is ONE game that we all truly love – with nobody “pretending” to  have fun (LOL). Yesterday I caught 2 toads, a grasshopper, and half a dozen potato bugs.  Today I caught a baby toad, a few worms, and a bunch of flying ants (ugh). Just for the record, we catch-and-release.

My barometer for knowing when to stop and smell the roses, is the mood of the people around me.  When the hubby and the kids get cranky and irritable – it’s time I check-in and get the QT going. What is YOUR warning sign that it is time to stop and smell the roses?

What do you like to do to stop and smell the roses?    ~ Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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