This week predicts rain every day, in western Kentucky. I have no plans to hike, or to ride my bike – or even go kayaking with Hubby this weekend. So what does one do while staying in? Let’s keep things positive.
First of all, don’t think of it as “stuck inside” just because it will be raining all week. For those like me, who do not answer to a time clock, and can plan a little leisure time around the daily tasks, I want to give you some ideas of things you can do this week, in order to avoid lazy, stagnate, or unproductive days.
Yes, it is very tempting to make these rainy days to be reading days, and curling up with a good book. If you don’t get to do that very often – do it! Don’t feel guilty. However, those who are avid readers who must have a book going at all times – all day long (while neglecting those daily tasks) why not change it up?
I am a do-er. I am constantly doing something the moment my husband leaves for work – unless I am writing, which I only give myself a few hours a day to write. One, because I want to write while fresh, and two, it helps me to look forward to continuing the next day. I rarely have writers block. Most of the time, stories, or the book I am currently writing just flow.
This IS a writing week for me. I have made time each morning to write in my book, and today to write a blog on my website. But what will I do the rest of the day? Since I feed our dogs and cats (and hubby) first thing, and go to feed and fly spray the horses at the ranch, come back to wash a load of laundry, wash dishes, clean the bathrooms, fix my mother in-law’s breakfast, take the pups to potty, sweep the floors… you get the idea; I would like to take some down time to read. Something I rarely do except for my Bible study each day.
I am grateful for an in depth Bible study I am reading – and now that it has been a habit, I look at that time as my daily oxygen. I must have my time in God’s Word. If you cannot discipline yourself to read for more than a few minutes or you simply don’t know what to read, may I suggest a Bible-In-One-Year plan? I prefer the BIOY by Nicky Gumble – a British pastor who has compiled three parts of the Bible and corelated these sections to go together, showing us how ALL of the Bible points to Jesus. He gives a passage from the Old Testament, the New Testament, and the center of the Bible – either Psalms or Proverbs, and he gives in depth commentary and prayer for each section. It has really made a difference in how I read the Bible. I wake up excited to read my study.
Three of my friends who are avid readers of fiction will post on Facebook what book they are reading, and it has made me want to dive into a good fiction book. But I don’t usually take the time, so maybe I will this week. I still have a bookshelf of TBR books, and I think I will read Francine Rivers’ books. I have read two stories of hers, in the Lineage of Grace, about Tamar and Rahab, but I have yet to read the other three stories in that book. I think the size of the book intimidates me, even though it is five books in one. I also have her book, Redeeming Love, which my cousin told me about and a few friends. Cross your fingers that I take time to open one up to read this week.
Other things on a rainy-day-to-do list, would be to organize.
Yep, I said it. What better time to dive in a closet or cabinet and just do it? One thing I want to share with you, is the difference in my yearly purge this year. Do you know why we dread clearing out a closet or drawer or cabinet? It’s because it’s a repetitive process! We know that all the time we take to clean it out, it will only be this way again next year. I have been practicing minimalism for five years now, but in baby steps.
This year, I finally became deliberate with it. Over the last few years, I have been able to let go of things I used to keep, but never used. That was the first step. Then, to learn not to buy something on a whim or that I didn’t really need – yet, somehow I still had clutter in the storage places of my house at the end of the year. I follow Joshua Becker on Facebook, and read his articles about minimalism. I learned that my problem was I still had too much stuff and no home for them.
So I resolved this year to let go of even more – no matter if it was still like new or it was expensive. I would only keep what was truly necessary and what had a space under my kitchen and bathroom cabinets. My donating the purges in the past were usually of things I didn’t like or was a mistake to buy, but this year, my donating was with a different heart. I looked in my clothes closet and asked myself – why am I storing all these clothes when someone else could be wearing them? I had nice clothes that I loved on the model in the catalogue – but not so much on me. The paisley or print blouses I had, seemed to require more thinking in how to pair it with something and caused me to buy more. I asked myself what I wear the most for my personal lifestyle.
Going to the ranch, taking care of my animals at the house, cleaning my house, writing, and church on Sunday didn’t warrant having all the dress clothes I had. As I tackled my closet to have a capsule wardrobe, I narrowed down what I actually wore – and stuck with only the size I am now, and reduced my closet by 60%. If you’d like to know more about how I went about it – read my previous article here. https://www.jenjeffrey.com/lifestyle/my-capsule-wardrobe/
What else can one do during a whole week of rain? Write!
Even if you are not a writer, writing is for everyone. Do you need a long conversation with God, but get distracted or fumble on your words? Write it! Write out your prayers to God – David did. And it provided us with such beautiful Psalms.
Catch up on your correspondence. Snail mail? Yes! Send someone a card or letter. It will make you both feel good. Write a poem or prose. Spend time with your thoughts and a blank sheet of paper (or keyboard). Blog. Blog about your travels, blog about your plans, or a bucket list. Writing is ‘cleaning out a closet” in a way. We hold so much in our heads that sometimes it interferes with our sleep. Write it out. Make to-do lists to motivate you and clear the clutter in your mind.
For those with a creative mind – paint, craft, sketch! For those with a mathematical mind – work on a budget, or get a head start on organizing your taxes.
There is ALWAYS something to do. Just because it is raining, doesn’t mean our moods have to be cloudy. Pick yourself up and do something to utilize this time. Unless, you are always on the go – then by all means make yourself rest. And enjoy that novel, or a good nap, listening to the rain.
And… there is one other thing you can do during this rainy week – something a friend of mine and I have done a few times.
Dance! Dance in the rain. Feel alive! Feel the coolness of the rain on your face. Lift up your hands in praise! Rejoice!
I love you, friends. Have a good day.