Thursday, February 28, 2008

Work vs. Play

I can't believe it's been 10 days since I've blogged! Me! The pushy broad who shoves and nudges to get my friends active on their blogs, has stumbled.
The past couple of weeks have been a blur. We finished (and by "we", I mean a whole crew of workmen, installation people, and my siblings) the downstairs quarters for my brother and got him 95% moved. There's still a pick-up truck load at his old place, but there's no rush for that. Curtains are on the windows, cable is working, waterbed filled and warmed, and the refrigerator got here this morning.
Somewhere in there, my computer started failing to recognize the card reader that handles photos. It's still messed up, so unless I plop a random shot here for no apparent reason, there will be no pictures in this post.
Oh! How about a sunflower? We could all use a shot of summer.
Wonder of wonders, I was able to move The Essential Herbal site and cart with no visible hair loss from my scalp. In between these things and watching over my brother, we've also started some serious work on the next book, scheduled several speaking engagements, handled soap and magazine orders, and squeezed in a radio talk show. So it's been a little wild. No downtime in the near future either, with the next deadline 2 weeks away.
My sister and I were chatting the other day (while unpacking boxes, of course) about running home businesses or any small business, putting our thoughts together for a future speech. The appearance is that there is all the time in the world to putter around and get things done. I know that people think that those working from home put in an hour or two a day and spend the rest of their time eating bon-bons while wearing fluffy slippers. Perhaps that is true of some, but it couldn't be further from the truth here.
The interesting thing is that the workday begins the moment we get up, and sometimes doesn't end until the head hits the pillow. Now it IS true that we are both doing what we love, sometimes while still in our jammies, and that makes a huge difference. It is sometimes difficult to find the line between work and play because much of what we do for a living we would also be doing for fun if we held "regular" jobs.
When I stopped working outside and decided it was time to work fulltime on the magazine, the idea was that I could spend much more time on marketing. It has become a joke around here lately, as my brother fails to see that any time spent on the computer can be considered work. He keeps telling my sister that I don't get things done because I'm "playing on the computer".
So I've been thinking a lot lately about where the line is between work and play ... if there needs to be a line ... and if maybe the lack of said line is what we are all striving for. In a few short weeks, I'll be tumbling down the hill, into the woods to look for the plants sprouting under the leaves left from Autumn. No matter what I did for a living, I'd be doing that. There would still be afternoons spent writing articles, we'd still love making soap (and a zillion other things), and we'd still be letting hobbies sweep us into the realm of small business. It's just what we do. We're hard-wired for it.
I remember the motto, I think from the Armed Forces, "It's the hardest work you'll ever love." For most of my friends who are running their own businesses, that seems to be true. So are we working? Or are we playing? Guess we'll just keep doing it - whatever it is.


Cindy said...

Tina, besides balancing work and play there is balancing family responsibilities! I know how you feel, sometimes it feels like there is never an end in site to the work to be done. Glad you are out snooping under the leaves though. I'm sure we will hear about what you find.

Herbs~Art~Family~Love said...

My kids fussed that I am always on the computer so they felt they did not need to do their chores.

I turned quickly and said, "my computer paid for the roof over your head, the water bill, electric bill and soem groceries this month. You can march your ass in the room and get it cleaned up now".
When the busy seasons come they seem to hit at the right times when my hubby has been out of work.
But it is all day from early morn to bedtime.
In your defense Tina. I know how hard you work.
New topic for the next mag? I have been wanting to write.

Tina Sams said...

Ah... the next issue. The only real theme is enjoying the spring in the garden! The May/June issue is a good one for wild foods/foraging information, planting, making "things" like tinctures, syrups, salves, etc. It's wide open. May/June is one of my favorite issues. Wait... I say that about all of them :-).

Laura said...

Absolutely LOVED this! So glad to see this latest blog! I've missed it! You have such a great way of putting things in perspective and making many of us go, "Yup! I'm on that ride too!"
Being an actress in NY, many folks would think, "Oh that's playtime!" But the hours that go into rehearsal and pushing emotional limits to bring a performance to great heights, not to mention juggling supplemental jobs to pay the bills... When I'm doing a show, I work 9-5, then rehearse 5:30-11. That's a 14 hour day, my friend. Not to mention the stress of running all over the city for auditions, classes, promotions, meetings with directors and agents. Yup, it's what I love to do, so I make the time. And when it becomes my fulltime job, I know those 14 hour days won't change, because I'll be filming, rehearsing, giving interviews. And keeping the balance, making time for family and friends as well. Gotta do what we love! It's work AND play! :)


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