Caterpillar Contemplations

"What the caterpillar calls the end, the rest of the world calls a butterfly." Lao Tzu

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#blogjune – What makes some challenges enjoyable, but others unpleasant?

The answer to this one seems easy dear sister … interest & passion is what makes a challenge enjoyable for me from the beginning however sometimes external or internal motivation (like deadlines) will get me started on a path and I realise that I enjoy a challenge more than I think for the pure sake of problem solving.

For example:  Writing a story or a play, collating resources or organising, writing up rehearsal schedules, working out lesson plans, editing someones manuscript etc…





Other challenges are unpleasant because they have usually been created through no choice of my own, or they are a requirement for a job or a workplace.

For example: Completing RPL subjects to become re-certified in a job that I’m already doing after only 4 years … or watching a team sport that you don’t enjoy for someone you love … or trying to work out how to teach this one kid who is wonderfully irritatingly uniquely testing the boundaries of his/her behaviour …

or trying to work out how to teach something that I’m not really confident with but feel I should be teaching and have to do it TOMORROW … or, depending on the day: writing a story or a play, collating resources or organising, writing up rehearsal schedules, working out lesson plans, editing someones manuscript etc…



I think … it mostly comes down to how I feel when I wake up in the morning.


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Spin off from any other #blogjune posts that inspire you (me).

My sister gave me a well considered prompt I think … one, that if time allowed, I think I would enjoy immensely.  Reminds me of an assessment task in VCE (a long time ago now), doing English Literature and writing a creative piece based on the books / poems / plays that we were reading.  I like that sort of assignment. Gives me parameters to work with.

However, when I clicked on my sister’s link I felt completely overwhelmed.  Did I have to read them all?  Which one do I choose?  None of the first lines really pulled me in … What if I didn’t find any I liked? Should I just pick one at random and go for it?

It’s the sort of request I’d like to spend time considering and reading and indulging in the blog community – perhaps even scoring a new blog to follow – but that feeling of being overwhelmed often occurs when I already have so much on my plate.  I decided that, I should instead use the list of blogs to be my inspiration.  My inspiration is … “being overwhelmed” – I want to say overwhelment (but it’s not a word … yet!).

Being overwhelmed is only something I’ve had any experience with since moving back ‘home’ to study.  Juggling motherhood, study, work, relationships and friends has been a bit of a battle for me.  My life up until I was 28 had a lot of enforced structure. I went to school, I came home, I did some homework – then relaxed. Or I went to work, did my job, came home and relaxed.  Or I was always at home with my son and I did the housework – then relaxed.  There is an ongoing pattern yes?

But in the last six years that pattern has drastically altered. I work some days, some nights. I have studied some things online and some things on campus. I am often in Ballarat one day, Melbourne another day and Gippsland the next.  My study is a home office and much of my ‘work’ is done at home, but also my ‘play’ (as I’m a huge game nerd).  Defining boundaries of what is work, what is study, what is play gets very blurred.  I have developed a strategy over the years, involving a paper organiser that has allowed me to cope better with my vagrant lifestyle.  I colour code activities or responsibilities. I can see a month at a time, nothing sneaks up on me now – a week at a time meant things could hide two weeks from now and I wouldn’t know till I flipped the page. But nonetheless I still get overwhelmed.

I tell my students to piece-meal their scripts. To learn one or two or three lines a day – not try to read and learn a script in one sitting.  Break it into consumable, doable pieces.  Like so many pieces of advice, it’s often easier to give than it is to enact.  At least, I know it does work and because I’m talking the talk often enough, my brain’s tape recorder (it’s still a tape recorder in my head, not a CD) plays the recording and I listen and sometimes respond to my own advice.

So I guess these means that I should go back to the prompt page my sister gave me and I should look at one, perhaps two of those listed blogs, read them and decide which one to respond to … but I think … this blog may just do the trick!

I’m fascinated with goal setting, but rarely do it … I think I feel so all over the place that it is hard to nail down some solid ideas of what I ‘want’.  But, I think my sister could do a better job:
Sis your prompt is – In five years time I’d like to be …

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What is June to you? #blogjune

Thanks sis!  An easy one!

What is June to me …


June is brisk mornings in fragile sunshine.
It is putting on multiple layers so that I can strip them off again in overheated rooms.
June is hot chocolates, red wine, stews and soups.
It is good books in hot baths with bubbles and visits from my boyfriend saying “can I get you anything?”
June is long conversations in front of open fires, or movie nights, or board games.
It is frost that paints the gardens white and rain that releases tensions and washes away the grime.
June is long boots and long skirts.
It is phrases like “winter is here now” and “it was so cold last night” and “shut the door!”
June is … tax … time.
And it is blissfully the end of term!


Well dear sis, what’s in store for you?  How about:



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Blog June Challenge

First Blog for June Challenge

I’ve never been one for peer pressure, being able to resist the friendship pull to do things that don’t interest me or involve me staying awake when I should be sleeping … but I’m a sucker for jumping on bandwagons. Got some crazy idea that we can do a two hour walk before sunrise – if you do it, I’ll do it*.  Want to bake a different cookie every day for the month of March – sure why not*!  Want me to cut out carrots and eggs from my diet for three weeks – I’ll give it a go*. So … when I arrived to pick up my son from my sisters house, her idea of attempting the #blogjune challenge piqued my interest, but it was her suggestion of giving each other topics each day that really sealed the deal.

Her ‘topic’ for me today is:

The pros and cons, hopes and nightmares, dark and light of our #blogjune idea.

A well thought out prompt.  Much better than my gift to her:

Babies born with the help of science are NOT miracles.

Not that I articulated it that well to her. I think I rambled something about the overuse of the word ‘miracle’ and how it annoyed me because they weren’t miracles, it was the advances of science and medicine that made so many ‘miracles’ possible.  Anyway … it’s not my topic anymore.  Ha!


CON: There is a strong possibility that my darling sister will give me a curly topic or two during the month.  A topic that I will have little knowledge of or will need to research which will be a strain on my time.
PRO: I respond well to enforced ideas.
CON: I tell myself that I am time poor but really I’m just exceptionally good at distracting myself from working consistently and utilizing my time efficiently.
PRO: I WANT to write regularly but I don’t write regularly. I’m a pick myself up and brush myself off type of girl who knows that multiple attempts are needed to form new, life changing habits. Could this be the one?
CON: I’ll have to think of cool topics for my sister … and I often feel drained by coming up with new ideas all the time for my work.

I sincerely hope that this challenge will give me direction, creative release, stimulate my writing muscle and open up doorways of communication between myself, my friends and my sister. I hope that it will potentially lower my stress levels and introduce me to new ways to source information, network and brainstorm my ideas / lesson plans / recipes / relationships.  But I fear that, like many of my projects and habits – evident on this blog (Project 365 & my 365 days of gratitude) or in my life (Weight Watchers, exercise, writing, getting off the computer at 10pm, taking fish oil every day) – that I will fail!  I know I just gotta keep on trying, new habits weren’t built in a day – although it certainly feels that way sometimes with the bad habits.

There will hopefully be dark humor, dark chocolate, dark wintry nights with dark themes of dark horses and dark carriages trundling along a dark track in a dark, dark forest.  The light will appear at the end of June, when I make it through each blog day – or perhaps when I reflect on how amazing the experience has been and how, it really wasn’t so difficult after all!



* I’ve never actually agreed or attempted to do any of these things … but the cookie one sounds good … if I had the time I’d be tempted to give it a go. Fortunately March is SO far away and no one will a) remember or b) want to do it with me – so I’m safe!