My unplugged evening started out with a bang, literally. The shelf where we keep our laptops came crashing down to the ground, and my poor little computer fell, hard. Besides a few scratches and bruises, it’s….oh, who am I kidding, it’s looking fatal. The screen is cracked, the battery is pretty much gone and the “M” key only works if I hit it with hammer-force. But it’s still working, for now.
In its condition, I can’t exactly use it for watching movies, or take it into a cozy chair to blog-surf. No, it does exactly what it needs to (email, write in Word, and…yeah, that’s it), but nothing more. And it’s alright. I’m getting used to more days without screen time, and my boys seem to watch less TV each day. It seems without me pushing them to keep busy by watching a cartoon, they don’t ask for it themselves. Huh. Maybe it was only me who was addicted this whole time.
But instead of just telling you how last night I reread some Pride and Prejudice and washed the dishes, I think I need to do more with my unplugged evenings. It’s not enough for me to stay away from the computer and the TV screen. I want to make more of my time, to see what I’ve been missing by spending my evenings chained to a screen.
So, what to do?
I talked a few weeks ago about doing more away from the computer, and that’s what I want to do, but with more purpose. I sat down last night and thought of some things I’d like to do, but have been avoiding because either I’m too scared, or I don’t think I have time, or because I couldn’t think of a better excuse, so I avoid talking about my wishes at all.
Here’s what I came up with:
- Sew my own dress
- Take a photo of 10 strangers whose style I love and post them to the Internet
- Take a self-portrait in front of a Seattle mural
- Bake a pie for my neighbors
- Go thrift store shopping
- Get a pedicure (I have a thing with feet, but…I want to do this!)
- Buy nice makeup from a department store makeup counter without being intimidated by the beautiful-perfect-polished women behind it
- Create an oil painting on canvas for my house
- Improve my photography skills
- Go to a Farmers’ Market
- Listen to live music with my kids
- Go to a beach bonfire with my kids
- Give 5 strangers on the street compliments
- Hand out my business cards to 10 people
I know this is a short list, and I’m still working on what I want to do next, but I’m excited. My unplugged evening isn’t just going to be about the absence of my computer, but also about doing something even better with my time, like living my life.
Do you want to join me? Take one evening out a week to do something for yourself that you’ve always wanted to do, but didn’t think you could.
See you next week, with something incredibly fun!
The Unplugged blog post series are written by Shalini Miskelly. Shalini is a librarian and writer in Seattle. You can find her at http://readingandchickens.blogspot.com and on twitter @booksnchickens