October 13, 2011

Finding the Balance

Just a little more than five years ago I was computer illiterate.
I didn't know how to send email.
I didn't know the first thing about creating Word documents or files.

I didn't want to know.

I'd had enough of computers in High School.
We had to create programs using DOS ~ 'Nuff said.

I figured I had enough on my plate
with little ones and family responsibilities.
Howie could accomplish whatever tasks were
necessary on the computer.

I communicated with friends and family the old-fashioned way.
I wrote letters.  I read the newspaper.
I kept a ledger book for our family's budget.
The calendar was on the wall.

Then, we began our homeschool journey.
It was a requirement to email the teacher once per week.
I thought maybe Howie could do that.
It was overwhelming.  But, I quickly adjusted.

About the same time as all of this was happening,
my sister moved away.  Far away.
She began a blog and invited her friends and family
to read it.  I did.

Then I ventured out online and *met* another blogger.
Her posts drew me in.  She shared her faith.
She shared her life.  It was a blessing.

These were the only two blogs
I read for about a year.
I was never going to blog.

You know how the saying goes ~
"Never say never."

I began blogging over two years ago.

At first it was just a big, unkown world.
I didn't know anyone. And no one knew me.
Before long I was visiting people.
And they reciprocated.

It was fun.  And addicting.

How quickly the computer takes on a life of its own.
How quickly a blessing can become a curse.  If it's allowed to.
There were many attempts along
the way to keep things in check.

I was accountable to my husband.
But, I still found myself going overboard at times.
I still blogged most days.
The computer was constantly drawing me in.
School.  Email.  Shopping.
Blogging.  Research.

It all melded into one big pool.
The pull was great.  Too easy to check the blog.
Too easy to lose track of time.
Too easy to neglect my first calling.

Wife.  Mother.  Teacher.

This past Summer I (mostly) took
a month off from the computer.
It was good.
When I came back I had a plan.
Please understand,
this plan is what works for me.
It may not be what works for you.

My system is simple.

I seek to limit my computer time to twice per week.
Email is sent and answered.
Blog posts are written, posted and moderated.
Blog friends are visited.  Online orders are placed.
Banking is done.

And then I am free.

Free to be a Wife.  Free to be a Mum.
Free to be a Teacher.
I find that I can think
more clearly.  More freely.  Free.

May the LORD help us all as we navigate this
online life in a wise and godly way.
He is Faithful.  He will guide.
He will give wisdom.

Finding the Balance.
By His Grace.  For His Glory.

Many blessings,

**Photo Credit ~ Calvin...thank you my love! xo


Intentional Living Homestead said...

What an incredible photo..God in all HIS MAJESTY.

Amen to your blog post...you have just taught me something:-)


Maryann said...

I have often said computers are like black holes where time just seems to disappear. You have to have a plan and it sounds like you have a good one.

Cinnamon said...

And we are so glad that You do blog!! Although I love getting a letter too :-)


Lady Farmer said...

Thanks, Camille, for sharing your plan on limiting computer time. I certainly am finding my need to pare down my computer time, also!
I do want to use my time wisely. It is so easy to waste an entire day following all these 'rabbit trails', going from one blog to the next.

Beautiful photo, Calvin! ;~P

Camille said...

Dear Connie ~ Thank you for the photo compliments...I will pass them along to Calvin. :) Yes, indeed...God's Creation IS majestic!

Dear Maryann ~ Thank you for your kind words of encouragement. I agree...a black hole is a good analogy! :)

Dear Cinnamon ~ Thank you my friend! I'm glad you blog too! And yes, a letter is a lovely thing. :)

Dear Raeann ~ Thank you for encouraging Calvin in his pursuit of photography...I will let him know you left him a note. :) Yes, indeed...rabbit trails!!

Many blessings,

Unknown said...

Yes! I am finding that balance too and it is SO good to not be drawn into and lost in the computer! I have made a committment to be a wife and mother. I can't do that well if nose and mind and body are attached to the computer screen!

Great post, my friend, have a wonderful weekend with your beautiful family!

Tell Calvin I loved his picture!

Lois said...

I'm so with you! When I was in high school, we didn't have computers, and my first intro was in college as a math course with a mainframe. We did not have internet until 2007, and it can be limited in a way because all 4 of us use the same machine. (I enjoy regaling the kids with "I remember when." The c prompt, no mouse, telephones with cords, dialing 0 for operator to make a long-distance call, using an encyclopedia, etc.) Sometimes I wish we could go back. Thanks for your post, and a happy belated Thanksgiving to my Canadian friends!

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

"By His grace, for His Glory". I love that! That should be at the forefront of our minds when we are on-line. Great post!

Camille said...

Dear Jenn ~ You know, you were one of my role models in this a LONG time ago...what a blessing it is to be friends with you. :)

Dear Lois ~ How lovely it is to hear from you! Thank you for stopping by and for your encouraging words. I do wish I could repay the visit or at least email you back. :(

Dear Jackie ~ Oh yes, my friend! How wonderful that the LORD is gracious with us...I am SO thankful for HIM! :)

Many blessings,

Tami said...

Now THAT's what I call discipline, right there! Wow, Camille! I've limited my computer time in several *areas*, but I haven't limited usage altogether! I enjoy creating stuff for our homeschool, so lately I might find myself on there being creative (even with home stuff) and looking for teaching helps (on Pinterest...now THAT's a new one that can inspire really great ideas, but it can also be just another time waster). Hmmm...I think your balance is fabulous and you inspire me to look even closer at my routine and see what can be changed. All to serve Him better. Thank you for sharing this, friend!


Camille said...

Dear Tami ~ What an encourager you are my friend! Thank you for being such a sweetie. Remember that I mentioned that what I do may not work for everyone...I totally get that! Your system may be just perfect for you! Just look to the LORD and HE will guide you. Please do not feel badly if your computer time is more than mine might be...we are all in different seasons!! I admire the stand you have taken in this area already. God is Good! :)