Tag Archives: Writing

Hello From The Other Side


Hey there. If you are reading this, then I’d like to congratulate you on staying faithful to the same email address for at least the last three years. That’s committment.

And it outlasted my relationship with this little corner of the Internet. I have a new corner, but I’ll get to that in a minute.

This summer I took an online writing course, my most formal attempt at cultivating my writing. One of the assignments was to write the chapters of our lives, past and future. After some eye-rolling, I ended up really enjoying this exercise and the self-reflection it inspired.

Most chapters were about major life transitions, but I titled one “Balance Overload” to mark the couple of years I was blogging regularly. It’s not because this blog changed my life radically or anything like that. But it reconnected me with my love of writing and expression, and that is a pretty huge thing in my world.

And then life — in its beautiful, ephemeral and distracting way — popped up, as it is wont to do. JB and I had just married when I wrote my last post at Balance Overload. And now, almost three years later, I sit here typing in between going in to snuggle a sick 18-month-old little boy, while his twin brother sleeps in the adjacent crib, miraculously undisturbed by his sibling’s cries.

As parenting ushered in my most significant transition yet, I felt my head once again full of ideas and thoughts that I wanted to express externally. But I believed it needed a brand new cyber home. I have often said that parenting is kind of like starting your life over, learning everything from scratch and with a completely new perspective. And while I didn’t want to necessarily write a parenting or “mommy” blog, I felt I needed a new space for these thoughts that are still from Caryn of Balance Overload, but seen through different lenses.

So after a lot of procrastination and stall tactics, I started a new blog called Journey to Napa. As I explain, the name represents my road to retirement (from work, in-the-trenches parenting, etc.). Obviously my retirement of any kind is a long time away (*knock on wood* everyone is healthy and all of those prayers up to the universe). But I wanted to have a broad palette to write about life. I have a few posts up and it’s a little all over the place (a lot seems to be about writing), but I hope to narrow in on topics as I go.

Even if you no longer have any clue who I am or why you ever entered your email address at this site, I want to thank you for following this little blog that fueled me in big ways to nurture my creative side. I have re-read many of my posts these last couple of weeks and I’ve especially enjoyed revisiting the conversations we had in the comments. I would be so honored to continue this dialogue (and learning about any new perspectives you have gained) at my new home.


Time to Start

If you are reading this, it means I actually posted a blog. It also means you’re probably my mom because I can’t believe I would have the nerve to tell anyone else.

I have talked about blogging for a while, but it was not until I received a postcard in the mail of a note I had written to myself about what I wanted to be doing in six months that I felt spurred to action. I can’t remember where I wrote it and I had no recollection of writing it at all when I curiously opened the envelope the day I received it (I’m assuming about six months after writing it). My colleague received one too, so as much as I would like to think it was a mysterious paranormal happening of my subconscious finding a way to reach me by way of lined index card, it was probably just a “live your dream” exercise at a conference.

And it worked. I started to seriously think about this blog, what I wanted to write about and why.

I always knew I wanted to write about balance, but it’s not a blog about simplifying. Simplicity is not really for me. I’ve tried different simplifying strategies (and if you’re looking for a blog that shares some, Zen Habits

The mysterious postcard reminder - transferred to refrigerator immediately.

is probably the best there is), but they don’t work for me because as it turns out, I like things a little complicated and over-scheduled… and frenetic… and neurotic. My moments of zen are nothing more than Daily Show segments and I’m okay with that.

So I strive to find balance without stripping things away. Is it possible? Sometimes. Is it sustainable? I hope so. I’ll be using this blog to talk about the ways I am learning to create this equilibrium in four main areas of my life related to four goals I set for myself last year. I hope I can share some helpful tips along the way, attempt to make you laugh, or at least provide a place for commiseration. The four areas I’ll be focusing on are:

·         Developing and maintaining a healthy romantic relationship
·         Getting serious about being healthy in terms of diet and exercise
·         Strengthening relationships with friends and family by being better at keeping in touch
·         Keeping a work/life balance (I probably won’t write too much on this. It’s covered. And when I write about it, I feel like I’m working.)

The first blog post is titled Time to Start. It’s a song from a Blue Man Group’s performance. I have never seen said performance mind you, but a friend of mine played it for me as I was recovering from a tough break-up. For the blue performers, it is just about starting the concert, but I was a different type of blue and for me, it was a reminder that my time living in (as well as weeping in, obsessing in, being angry in) the past was over and it was time to start moving on. It’s now a little bit of an anthem for me and for anytime I am embarking on a new adventure. I would call this an adventure.

I hope you will come along on the adventure. And don’t worry, I promise not all posts will be this long. If you are actually still reading this, thanks Mom.