I signed a contract to write a book last week, and in the time since I made it official, I have had zero opportunity to write.

None.

I haven’t been able to blog, to work on the book, or to make edits on another project. We’ve been on vacation, and I purposed this year to be fully engaged in that vacation. In the past, I’ve always pulled away to blog, feeling as though I had to keep the ball rolling so as not to lose momentum.

This year, I had to stop.

Babies change things. Having another baby makes it harder to pull away and work. I’m obviously okay with this, because have you seen how desperately cute that baby is?!

But I needed to make it a plan in my head that I wouldn’t steal time from my family to write words that may or may not be read. I needed to be present, fully, and I was. And it was awesome.

But today it’s time to get back in the swing of things.

Photo Courtesy of Tammy Labuda. TammyLabudaPhotography.com

Photo Courtesy of Tammy Labuda. TammyLabudaPhotography.com

Tonight, two of my creative besties will land in Florida. They’ll make their way across the country from California, and land on the hot tarmac here in Tampa. Tomorrow, the other three will join them, and the six of us will spend the rest of the week cheering one another on as we press toward our individual goals.

We’ll work on books, on photography, on lesson plans for the coming year. And we will do what we’ve always done best. Encourage one another.

Photo Courtesy of Tammy Labuda. TammyLabudaPhotography.com

Photo Courtesy of Tammy Labuda. TammyLabudaPhotography.com

This will be our 5th Annual Creative Retreat, and it will be different this year. We’re on a different coast, and we’re all in different places in our lives. Time will be spent less on creating the perfect meal, and more on the projects that beg for our time.

Tammy doing her thang at our 3rd Annual Retreat.

Tammy doing her thang at our 3rd Annual Retreat.

There’s been a lot of stress leading up to this year’s retreat. Coming in from vacation the day before you’re hosting such an event is not something that I would generally recommend. And it’s the first year my mom hasn’t been around to help with the kids, so a sitter is coming to the rescue.

We work at these retreats, yes. But we also rest, and rest is imperative for the creative soul.

We work at these retreats, yes. But we also rest, and rest is imperative for the creative soul.

All these things beg for my attention, threatening to steal the joy I feel when I surround myself with these talented friends of mine, but just as I had to purpose not to work during vacation, this week I will purpose not to worry while away from my family.

Photo courtesy of Tammy Labuda. TammyLabudaPhotography.com

Photo courtesy of Tammy Labuda. TammyLabudaPhotography.com

The kids will survive a few days without me, and Lee assures me he’s got this handled. Despite the stresses inside his own job, he’s given me a wide blessing to chase after this dream I have of writing books.

So this morning, I’ll get the baby settled for a nap, and pray she takes a long one. Then I’ll head out to pick up groceries, and I’ll prepare myself to leave for a few days. To step away into my craft.

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It’s amazing what we can accomplish when we’re willing to pull away for a few days. Even for a few hours. I pulled away from blogging for almost the entirety of our twelve day vacation, and I found that the quiet spaces actually provided me time to think.

Imagine that.

All the words I need to write began to simmer in those pulled back days, and they’re ready to tumble out. At least, I hope they are. I really hope they are.

And pulling away from my family for just a few days will offer a similar peace of mind so that when I return I’ll have less of the book hanging over my head, and I can focus more fully on them as we continue to enjoy our Summertime Agenda of Awesome.

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I’m looking forward to the refreshment of simply diving into the work this week. And next week?

Next week we play again.

 

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