Monday, August 08, 2011

I hereby reinstate ZEN TIME.


Last year I dubbed the penultimate week of summer my "last week of summer" and held one week in reserve as Zen Time. Here's what I said about it:
Zen Time will be devoted to [reading] one last book, cooking delicious meals, laying in the sun for hours at a time, wearing spaghetti strap tops, short shorts and bare feet (before I have to turn back into Mrs. P, the modest adult), napping, walking, and drinking. I think I'm going to enjoy me some Zen Time.
Zen Time was a major success, and in light of this being my second year of being furloughed with no pre-service days before the start of the school year, I am happy to reinstate a little ZT.

The first rule of Zen Time is that you don't have to do anything.  You can choose to do any task you want, but it has to be a choice.  It can't feel like work.  DO NOT get up on time, schedule any dentist appointments, or decide this is the week to organize anything.

The second rule of Zen Time is that you have to have fun.  This means you might take yourself less seriously than you do for the other 51 weeks a year, and by God that's a good thing anyway.  You should spend time with the people who really matter.  Do things you like.

Third rule of Zen Time: Must get outside as much as possible.  Related detail: Exercise is allowed because it makes you feel good.  But if you choose it, exercise with gratitude and confidence, not whining and insecurity.

Fourth rule: Must cook at home with fresh, vivid ingredients.  Must not count calories or vilify any foods.  Must enjoy the act of eating good food with people you love.

The fifth rule of Zen Time is that you have to keep your schedule free of too many commitments.  That way naps, books, swims, and impromptu Lego-playing can find themselves into your week.  Don't over-plan.  Let life happen.

The sixth rule of Zen Time? You are allowed to throw out the rules at any time in favor of finding joy and peace for one last heavenly week.  Zen Time is about real life.  Enjoy it.

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