Saturday, December 24, 2011

After finishing writing my book for Nanowrimo I turn my head to my family and housekeeping. December is short days, waking up in the dark, finding presents that are worthwhile for the children. I found geometric puzzles for my son who now enjoys resolving them. The smile on his face is precious. My other son shows me the Cheops puzzle he managed to solve. He is our youngest child. He didn't need help to do it. The shop arabesk.nl is stopping this year. Where will I find the same quality of puzzles and toys? We are really enjoying our vacation. There is a pile of books on the table. The children brought books from school to read. Tomorrow a friend is comming to bake coockies with the children. A colleague from the USA is invited.
I feel so much better than last year and I'm very thankful for this.
In the back of my head I reread my book. I'm pleased with what I have written and don't think there is much I want to change...

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Nanowrimo and exploring

Through writing this month about Nora who writes to Noam, I learned about the process that Nora is in, writing the letters and refining her character. I'm now sad about leaving Noam and Nora...

Monday, November 14, 2011

Nanowrimo gadget


On this gadget you can see how much progress I make with my Nanowrimo writing. You can also see my username, Schmiodile. If everything continues like this, I will finish my 50000 words early. I'm writing in Dutch. The story is about Nora, a mother, who writes letters to Noam, a captured soldier. Each letter starts with a virtue.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Humility is active

With my chevruta I'm learning about Humility. Humility is about doing. I have the tendency to shy away. This is not Humility. So a good exercise for me would be to practice Gevurah, Strength. Where can I better practice than with the children? I have to reread the chapter to see if I completely get the concept right. It is about the nuances.
I read that my wisdom as an adult can stand in between me and my children if I feel I'm better than them. If I have wisdom, I'm supposed to share it with them.
Thus it would be Humility to share my wisdom with my children with a humble heart, but with strength as well and acrively involved. And Joy!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

starting to write

Nanowrimo 2011 is just around the corner. My husband warned me not to write more than is good for me. The idea to start a new book appeals to me. I will watch my energylevel, but what should I write about? I'm having trouble to stick to one idea. Time to search the web for help. In this article suggestions how to unleash my imagination and find good ideas. Maybe I will succeed writing, maybe not...

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Simply Joy

How can you be joyous in a difficult situation? Say my husband has a bad day, his mood is not pleasant. I can feel bad because he is too much in his feeling to pay me attention. I can also feel joy, that he is here with me. This really works. Just like I felt when we were in love, that same feeling actually helps in a bad mood day.
What would happen if I focus on giving joy?
I want to learn more about joy without artifacts. I guess it is about wanting what you already have, rather than expecting a fix through an artefact. I want to read more about it this year.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

the silent observer (2)

This quiet and sometimes slow because reflective voice inside has been given more space to speak for some time now. I notice my words are kinder, more reflective, wiser. This has an effect on people around me. They become calmer, kinder, thoughtfuller themselves. Sometimes one of the children will react with acting out. Then the quiet voice combines well with strength.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Modesty, humility

The course of Ethics (Mussar) is nearly finished, we practiced all character traits in it and now we're back to Anavah. We (my chevruta and I) found that we need to be more present and say our thoughts more often, in contrast to others who can gain by being more silent. This is difficult because accostumed to being silent, I have difficulty hearing that silent voice within myself that has interesting things to say. I haven't been writing on my blog for some time, busy with daily chores, caring for my family. When we have a deeper discussion with the children, I enjoy that very much, so why don't we have that more often, instead of watching television or sitting behind the computer. Taking up one's space is an aspect of Anavah.

Monday, April 4, 2011

The zone of proximal development and me

What does the zone of proximal development mean in my life right now? How can I keep on learning? I can use internet and google to learn through exploring that what is related to what I already know and find out what I can add to what I already know. This is how I do it. I wonder about a problem, a concept, with no words yet for my idea. This idea shapes itself when I try to describe it in words. A new word arises, I search for what is written about this word or word combination. Sometimes I find out it doesn't exist as a combination in google yet in the language of my search. Then I try to find synonyms or a description. What someone else writes gives rise to a reaction. I can write about my reaction, leave a comment or buy a book on the subject of my new interest. What is interesting is like the fringe of a landscape of concepts. The building of an internal mindmap that covers the interests that I have. This even includes how to rearrange my house, what to do with the children. Finding something new to add to my knowledge, e.g. a new anecdote to help my ongoing character building and raising children, or something that saves time (lifehack), or a site with quotes, all this keeps me motivated to be a parent, to be a wife, to be myself.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Honour the silent observer

This week I'm practicing Honour. Today I'm honoring the silent observer inside myself and in others. My silent observer is not quick to comment. It is the non-reactive voice that computes quietly while I hear my desire and comments at the foreground, urging me to fullfill the needs of my ego, or just pleasant but unfocussed babbling. I'm going to observe the media and see what role is given to the silent observer, rather than the cry of impulse. When I think or speak, I'll try to let this part of me speak.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

teach learning

Teach how to learn is often seen as a biproduct of education rather than a separate topic at the primary or secondary school of my children. Today I teached a friend how to learn a difficult section in a book about economics. We made a mindmap of the section, starting with that what she remembered after a first read. The structure of the text became apparent when we used different colours for different information. After making the mindmap, she remembered much of the text and in her own words. The associations help to retrieve the information.
The last paragraphs my friend didn't need my help, and she was surprised her memory worked!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Marvel at concepts

At this point I'm trying to integrate what I'm learning on my fresh course on ethics (Mussar) and what I know both from previous knowledge and experience. In science I learned not to be original except for the discussion part which was my prefered part. Originality I see as the fringe of knowledge, where knowledge has no shape yet for us to understand it. I guess like a child I like to marvel at concepts.
Is the meaning of the word that I think it is really true or is the truth slightly different? Would another shape explain it better? I like to compare my ideas to that of others.

Juggling with selfishness

What I regret most is that I've pushed others away and chosen to be selfish. It is healthy to put up boundaries between myself and others, but at the same time we are a unity of souls. I tried to retract from this. This paradox of the tension between healthy boundaries and healthy unity puzzles me. What is my place? Am I conscious of the world, am I humble? It feels as if I'm juggling with this in relationships and when I think of world news e.g. on poverty.
How can I be with boundaries and less selfish, open to the world at the same time?

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