(Hi, dear readers. Thanks for stopping by, although we’ve been spotty of late. Summer has just gotten started around here, and the lure of the outdoors – and children home from school! – has stood between me and my keyboard. I got my first sunburn this week, though, so the sun and I are on the outs, which bodes well for the blog. And now on the subject at hand…)
Maybe none of you have this problem, but I occasionally have to just stop with The Internet. Every few months, I need to shut down my blog reader, Twitter feed, Pinterest, Instagram, and all the rest. (I’ve already fled Facebook, which is another post.) Most of the time I love being able to wade through the ideas, inspiration, images, and other cool stuff people I admire are posting. But every now and then, it all starts to add up into this amorphous Mass of Awesomeness to which my life doesn’t measure up.
Everyone is doing these amazing seasonal projects with their children, while feeding them delicious, healthy, gluten-and-refined-sugar free snacks! Their homes are wonderfully organized! They have photos of all the way they’re implementing Simplicity Parenting! Books are organized, accessible, and attractively displayed! Sigh.
So I turn it off.
I do get it: we pin things that look interesting or that we want to try or dream about. No one’s Pinterest feed reflects their actual life. I’m not going to fuss with Instagram’s filters on an uninteresting photo. And as a blogger, I have to edit: I write about theological kidlit, but really, that’s just a sliver of our family’s reading life. I write about reading with children, hoping to give encouragement to myself and others, not because we do it perfectly at my house. My failures generally aren’t that interesting; hence, not post-worthy.
However. In the interest of keeping it real:
Yes. That is a Disney Fairies book. (You probably can’t read the text on the back, so I’ll help you out. The heroine’s dilemma is that she loses her fashion sense and wears a lampshade on her head. Really.) Yes, there are about 20 more of them on the same shelf at our local library branch. And yes, my six-year-old loves them. She has just entered that voracious-chapter-reading book stage, and while I’ve been doing my best to hand her the Great Books, she searches out the (Disney!) fairy books at the library. I do not prevent her, and I’ve given up on trying to redirect.
And honestly: I’m totally okay with it. She’s six. Not every book she reads will be fantastic. Some will be twaddle. This is real life, at our house: lots of great books, some pretty terrible ones, and me learning to bite my tongue and relax. Practicing “read at whim!” as a mantra. (And thanking God that at least it’s not Sweet Valley Twins which – oh shame of shames – I devoured. Thought that day, too, may come.)
Just thought I’d tell you all the truth.