Priorities

The Short Version:

For personal and professional reasons, it’s time to reprioritize the place this blog and website have in my life.  While my heart is still very much passionate about The Inspired Classroom and all it stands for, I must change the way things run so that the other pieces of my life can get the attention they need and deserve.  These pieces include: my kids, my family, my teaching, even my messy kitchen.  😉

So, whether this becomes a short break, a long hiatus or something in between, only time will tell.  My plan is to continue to write as the spirit moves me.  After all, there are still many ideas and post topics floating around in my head, but time and energy play a part in keeping up a blog.

And, in case you are wondering, my first love of instructing and leading face to face professional development (such as the Teacher Art Retreat and other arts integrated workshops and courses) will certainly continue.

The Long Version:

There comes a time in every mother’s life where she has to make changes in her priorities.  At least that sounds like it must be true.  It is for me.

Over the last few years, I have been struggling with balance and change, holding on to my identity while morphing into a person who has little people depending on her for SO much.  Things have tended shift in the process.  I tweet in surges, send newsletters irregularly, and update my PD page when these keys things happen at once: I think of it, I’m by my computer, I’m alone with no distractions, my email notifications are paused, my phone is too far away to hear it and – wait, what was I just going to do???

I’m a working mom and damn proud of it.  It’s an ambitious way of life.  Full of ….  well, full of a lot of stuff to do and not enough time to do it.  I want to teach and mother, cook and clean, snuggle and correct papers, tweet and email, and blog!  I’ve grown to love blogging.  It is a way for me to get my ideas out to the public: anyone who will listen.  I write while imagining thousands of readers around the world are reading.  And in some cases they are!  Just check out my revolving globe.

I started out strong and for years, posting something new and fresh three times a week.

Alas – through my ambitious desire to keep on a schedule, other things started to wane.  While I kept up my online professional existence, my personal life lacked a luster.  My kids would ask for my attention and I would find myself saying my standard, “one more minute,” hoping that would really give me 15-30.  One day, when calling for my then 3-year-old daughter to come to dinner, I was told, “Let me just…”  My own words pierced through my ears and slapped me across the face.

If you are a regular reader of The Inspired Classroom, you may have noticed how my writing started to slim down: from three to two posts a week.  And then guest posts started to infiltrate the stream.  At first they were strictly honed into my audience and then every so often, there would be one not quite up to par.

Sorry about that.  In an effort to keep the blog up to date, I forgot what I was always told about quality verse quantity.

And so, quality needs to be a top priority in both my personal and professional life and to do so, change needs to occur.  I think I’m ready for it now.

Now, please – tell me I’m not the only one here.  I know so many moms and working professionals who are bright, wonderful and ambitious:  working men and women who want to simply give everything their all.  Well, something’s got to give.

It has taken me seven years to realize that to be an effective mom, you NEED to change your priorities.

So here is my freeing moment, the moment where I tell you how allowing myself this extra time away from blogging has made me a better person.  Actually, it has.  I am spending more quality time with my kids and family not worrying about the post I need to write before I go to bed.  My new school year is off to a great start as my attitude is to focus on school and the students as opposed to what activities I should document in order to share out.

I have a new sense of relief, peace, sanity and accomplishment lately and if feels good.

It’s funny how for years I thought things might fall apart if I stopped blogging, tweeting and writing even for just a couple of days.  But guess what?  It didn’t.  I still have followers and readers.  I still have teachers emailing me about ideas and activities.  I still teach the occasional workshop.  And I also have time to smile, laugh and, most importantly snuggle with my cuties.

Time is too precious and so is family.

Maybe I’m just growing up…

And so, to you my wonderful readers, this is certainly not the end, just a change – a well-needed change.  And it’s a good one.

I hope you agree.

~EMP

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Article by Elizabeth Peterson

Elizabeth Peterson has devoted her life to education and to reaching out to other teachers who want to remain inspired. Mrs. Peterson teaches fourth grade in Amesbury, Massachusetts and is the host of www.theinspiredclassroom.com. She holds an M.Ed. in Education, “Arts and Learning” and a C.A.G.S. degree with a focus in “Arts Leadership and Learning.” Elizabeth is author of Inspired by Listening, a teacher resource book that includes a method of music integration she has developed and implemented into her own teaching. She teaches workshops and courses on the integration of the arts into the curriculum and organizes the annual summer Teacher Art Retreat. Mrs. Peterson believes there is a love of active, integrated learning in all children and from their enthusiasm, teachers can shape great opportunities to learn.
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2 Comments

  1. Susan Riley says:

    AGREE!!! Can I like this a thousand times over? I completely know and understand where you are in your journey, my wonderful friend, and I give you a standing ovation for it. You are a beautiful gift to the world in all of your talents and this is a fiercely proud moment for you. Thank you for letting us share in it and for providing this post of wisdom. I can’t wait to see what else life, your family, and your work has in store for you!

    • Elizabeth says:

      How encouraging you are to me, Susan! Thanks. And as I redirect my energy, I wish you the best in moving forward on your journey. It is a pleasure to share a road with you!

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