life

cloudy skies

IMG_1490.JPG

I’m sure this comparison has been made by someone else at some point, but watching clouds out my window on the flight back solidified the idea in my mind. Grief has so much in common with these clouds. 

One minute the sky is clear and the next it’s completely covered. While weather is somewhat predictable, the clouds themselves are not. They’re hard to measure, to manage, to anticipate. Some move quickly across the sky and others linger. 

The sadness that comes with grieving drifts in and out of my days, constantly unpredictable. Some moments it’s heavy and impossible to see through. Other times it's a wispy, fleeting feeling. And then once in a while I look up and there's not a cloud in the sky.

On this trip, I read a great article by Stephanie Quick that referenced clouds and contained these words:

I imagine what a world of uniformity would look like, demanding we all see the sky the same way, from the same angle. Or I wonder what life would be like if we all believed the clouds to look like the same kind of animal.    — Darling Magazine, Issue 19

And that's where the analogy gets even stronger. Not only are there different types of clouds that can change from one minute to the next, but every cloud will look a little different to each of us. Everyone’s perspective is unique, so we will all experience and process grief differently. And clouds are as universal as grief is.

IMG_2336.JPG

The night we arrived in Murren, the sky was foggy. At dinner, we watched clouds blow in and out, obscuring parts of the view, but they didn’t keep us from being amazed by what we could see of the lush green mountains so close. Toward the end of dinner, the clouds lifted just a little and we discovered an entire section of mountains above us that we hadn’t even seen yet! 

The next morning, we woke to find ourselves in the middle of a cloud. We could barely see the balcony outside our window. We started rethinking our plans for the day but 5 minutes later the sky was clear. We snapped some photos and watched it turn to fog again.

I checked to see if we took any photos of that deep fog, but there are none. At the time, it didn’t feel beautiful or worth trying to capture. It was just dense white fog. And we knew exactly what we were missing.

For now, this analogy is helpful. The fog that initially felt so thick and heavy after losing Emma is starting to thin and break apart from time to time. Cloudless days are becoming more frequent, but I'm still not interested in talking about silver linings, rainbows or anything of the sort.

I don't expect the clouds to ever go away completely.
But I don't think I would want them to.

Emma Margaret Ramos

Emma Margaret Ramos was born to heaven on September 14, 2016. She weighed 2 lbs, 5.5 oz. She had a head full of curly dark hair.

One month ago, I was in a hospital room having just delivered our second baby girl. One month ago, she didn’t even have a name yet because we weren’t ready. She wasn’t ready.

Andrew was on his way home from a business trip to Germany that was cut short. 

Indie Craft Parade, the event that I work on all year long was only hours away, and I wasn't there. No one was where they were supposed to be.

Even now, I find it all very hard to believe. I’ve had many sad moments, and a few sad days, but for the most part, I would describe the last month as surreal.

I’ve been waiting for it all to sink in. For something to ‘click’ and it all to feel real. But now I’m beginning to wonder if that will ever happen. If anything, our experience — from the first call to the midwives all the way to the visitation and memorial service — feels like a dream that is fading. 


But some pieces feel real, and important. I'm writing them down so I don’t forget.

Our friends, our family, and our church have all been more real to me than ever. Every other day, meals show up on our front porch. Friends threw Ella a 2nd birthday party. Strangers, acquaintances and distant relatives have reached out to offer us comfort. In fact, words of encouragement have come to us through every possible avenue: text messages, flower arrangements, Facebook, cards, etc. These people, the flowers, the food are all tangible reminders of love.

Ella hasn’t asked about the baby. In spite of months of pointing to baby in my tummy and telling her goodnight, Ella seems to have forgotten about her baby sister. At some point this might seem sad to me, but right now it’s comforting to not have to attempt explaining life and death to a two year old. Especially when I seem barely able to grasp it myself.

Art has been particularly meaningful. We already have several pieces in our house that were given to us in honor of, and in memory of, Emma. I have a better understanding of how art can speak to us in ways and times when words can not. 

The fear of forgetting. Our time with Emma was so short, and there’s not much to hold on to. I realized the other day that I don’t know what color her eyes were. I never saw them open. Of all the emotions I’ve experienced in the past few weeks, this is one of the strongest.

I see babies differently. As we deal with our loss, other friends and acquaintances are having babies and announcing their own pregnancies. I’m sure people wonder whether that makes me sad, but it’s actually the opposite. It’s like I finally realize how much of a miracle babies are. I think I took this for granted a little bit because of how uncomplicated Ella’s birth was.

While it’s not exactly tangible, the comfort I have found in Heaven is very real. Most importantly, the thought that all of the things I could have possibly wished for Emma here on earth — to be happy, healthy, whole, loved — were already true by the time we met her.

Andrew and I struggled to find the right wording for her memorial service program. The smallest details bothered us. The use of the word ‘born’, which typically implies life. The fact that there was only a single date to list. But we finally landed on these words:

Our precious little girl was born to us 8 weeks early, weighing only 2 lbs 5 1/2 oz and not yet ready for this world. We named her Emma Margaret Ramos, meaning ‘whole’ and ‘pearl’. We missed meeting her in this life, but will one day see her again – we take refuge in this thought.

Everybody's Business

I vaguely remember the name Rodney King from my childhood and hearing about the riots in LA on the news. I lived in the Midwest, and while I’m not naive enough to believe that racism didn’t exist where we lived, it didn’t seem to affect me. Racism seemed far away, and mostly something from our country's past — an issue we had collectively moved beyond. I realize now that I was just young, white, and sheltered.

In Missouri, there was no talk of north and south. And the confederate flag was something I only saw in history books, or as a meaningless souvenir that you might acquire on a road trip, no different than a commemorative t-shirt or a mug.

Then I moved to South Carolina. 

I quickly noticed subtle differences between the culture here and the one I grew up in. Most obvious to me were the constant references to the North and the South. Comparisons between Northerners and Southerners. Not only did people remember this division in our country, but it seemed they wanted to keep it alive in some form.

When I moved here, the confederate flag was still flown at the South Carolina state capitol. Yes, a historical symbol — but one filled with decades of meaning on all sides.


Someone once asked me if I had ever read a book that was life-changing. While not technically a book, I’m currently making my way through one of the most life changing documents I have ever read. It’s a thorough survey documenting the state of race conditions in Greenville, South Carolina in 1950. The report covers everything from living conditions to education to medical care.

It’s essentially a time capsule of what life in 1950 Greenville was like for the black community. The paper is aptly titled, Everybody's Business.

Reading this document has educated me in a way that no history book has ever done. To see discrimination documented factually in black-and-white is frankly shocking. The realities of daily life that were socially acceptable are recorded here with stats, figures and quotes. 

You can read the report in its entirety here. If you prefer a more visual or concise read, this Time/LIFE article and photo series (1956) by Margaret Bourke-White is also helpful.

I confess: I have only made my way through part of the paper. Not only is it a lot of information to take in, but the sad realities are difficult and heavy to process.

It’s eye-opening to realize that this glimpse into Greenville’s past is only one generation removed from me. When I sit in my neighborhood meeting, around me are many people who experienced this version of Greenville. People who are intimately familiar with the conditions I’m reading about because they lived in them.


This past week I’ve heard many people say that it's time for white people start listening. I agree, but I want to add that if we're just starting to listen, we have some serious catching up to do.

Maybe the facts were glossed over in school, or maybe I just wasn't listening because it didn't seem relevant. If we're serious about listening, and really hearing what our fellow Americans have to say, I think we have to look back as well as forward. Without the benefit of historical context, how can we even begin to make sense of the frustrations and limitations our neighbors face? What is, and has been reality for the black community is not common knowledge in the white community.

This is not an excuse. It’s a call to action. It's time for us to do our homework. To read the facts, take in the words of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the pleas for equality from those who have gone before us. We need more than just snippets from Twitter to comprehend the complexity of the events happening around us.

I can no longer pretend that race issues have nothing to do with me. The truth is, they're everybody's business.

resting in monotony

One of the Makers Summit talks that really stuck with me this year came from Scott Hofert. Two weeks later, I’m still processing the ideas he shared. Scott encouraged us to rest in the seasons of boredom and monotony because they will come, and many times this is where we are most creative.

What he said resonated with me, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized that I can’t remember the last time I was ‘bored’. I love a new project and in general, I like to stay busy. I’m a more productive person when I’m forced to manage my time well. I am constantly making and adding things to lists. My philosophy is to get things done, and I can rest once I’ve checked everything off the list.

At the moment, I can relate a little more to the monotony side of the equation. It’s easy for washing dishes, folding laundry, and cleaning up, to be dreaded tasks. They’re never ending and always on the list. Embracing the monotony of these tasks might change my perspective and let me see these as quiet times to look forward to.

As I’ve tried to process Scott's words, I’m finally understanding that my lists will always be there. There will probably never be a day when I wake up and I find myself with nothing to do. So my challenge seems to be creating more whitespace, in spite of my to-do lists. 

There will probably never be a day when I wake up and I find myself with nothing to do.

Several years ago, my pastor spoke about the idea of Sabbath as "the ability to put work down". Over the past two weeks, I’ve started to notice how much I go out of my way to avoid boredom and fill up every inch of time. There are obvious ways: social media, picking up my phone for no reason, obsessively multi-tasking instead of being focused.  And there are not-so-obvious ways: feeling guilty playing with Ella because I really need to finish some household task. Never painting my nails — not because I don’t like having my nails painted, but because I literally can’t stand the 15 minutes afterward where I can’t do anything with my hands. 

This weekend, I took some intentional steps toward whitespace. I got my nails done. And I tried to be calm when they were taking too long to dry. I went outside while Ella napped and read a book that I really wanted to finish, ignoring my messy kitchen. I picked flowers from our yard. I watched a movie and didn’t spend the majority of that time folding laundry, checking email or flipping through catalogs while I did it.

I’ve been surprised to realize how hard it is for me to “put work down”. Part of me wonders if I need to just add that to my list. :) 

filling in the gaps

It seems impossible that Makers Summit was an entire week ago. After months of work, it always sneaks up on us and then it's over before we can blink!

This year, I felt like I had the chance to actually meet and chat with a few people, when I'm usually just running around with a "can't talk right now" vibe. I've had over a week to process all the great advice I heard, and this year I'm going to do a better job documenting the concepts that have really stuck with me.

The conference kicked off with a great keynote by Justina Blakeney. Among the many pieces of good advice she shared, was this gem:

"I think we fill in each other's gaps." – Justina Blakeney

This is so true of our Makers Collective team, and I think it's true of friends and family as well. We are meant for community and we can't do it alone. It's also a great reminder that everyone doesn't have to work or think like I do and I shouldn't try to be like everyone else.

We were created to fill in each other's gaps. When I try to do everything all by myself, there will be holes — whether I can see them or not. If I isolate myself from others, I'm not filling in the gaps where others may need me to stand.

I think (especially in the maker community) it's really easy for the do-it-yourself mentality to become standard practice not just in our work, but in our personal lives too. Justina's simple statement reminded me that it's okay that none of us are perfect. That's why we have each other.

30 Day Challenges

The month of February is off to a much better start. For the most part, our house is healthy once again, and we emerged with a much greater appreciation for our normal state of health!

A few years ago, I shared the idea of doing 30-day challenges as an alternate to New Years resolutions. The basic idea is to do something consistently — usually something you want to be doing anyway — for 30 days at a time.

I still really like this idea because it seems way more sustainable than beginning the year with a big list of ways you're going to be a better person all at once, only to become disillusioned by mid-February.

A screenshot of my February, via  Productive .

A screenshot of my February, via Productive.

I've read that it takes 21 days for something to become a habit, so trying something new for 30 days can actually result in some long-term changes. While I don't expect to add 12 new habits this year, the plan is to try something new each month and see what sticks. My challenges are extremely small, but with the emphasis on consistency, I've been surprised to already notice a really huge difference in my daily routine.

 

January

My challenge was to read a little bit every night. Sometimes it was a chapter, sometimes less, and I missed a few days here and there. But since the beginning of the year, I've read three books(!). I've always loved to read, and I feel like I rediscovered that in January. The challenge is over, but I still look forward to getting in bed and reading for a few minutes every night.

bedmade.jpg

February

My February challenge has been to make the bed every morning. This was a (required) habit growing up, but in the light of adulthood, it never feels like a good way to use my time. I've been surprised how nice it is to walk into the room at the end of a long day and see an inviting and tidy bed.

 

If you feel like tackling a few 30-day challenges of your own, here are a few tips:

· I love checking things off a list, so I downloaded an app to help me keep track of my progress and keep me accountable.

· Make it easy on yourself. During January, I let audio books count as 'reading'. This was great for the nights I wasn't feeling well and my eyes needed a rest. Keep in mind, you're making the rules for these challenges, so give yourself a break and don't make your goals impossible to achieve.

· Choose realistic challenges you actually want to do. There are plenty of resolutions that could be accomplished (the gym every day!), but I've tried to focus on things that I genuinely want to make part of my life and feel that I'm actually capable of doing.

 

Note: I've long had an obsession with fun pillowcases. The ones pictured on our bed are from the Xenotes Etsy shop.

Welcome to 2016.

i started the new year with some kind of bug and still haven’t been able to shake it. A visit to the doctor yesterday revealed that I’m not just fighting a bad cold, but I have strep. And bronchitis. 

I was optimistic about 2016. Determined to make friends a priority this year and invite people to our home more often, instead of just saying that we should. I’m realizing quickly that these thoughts were very much influenced by the clean state of our house at the time. It’s so much easier to feel hospitable when you feel presentable.*

After being mostly cooped up for a few days with snow and now sickness, the optimism has definitely faded. Not only am I unable to make plans or invite friends over, but my formerly clean house seems to be imploding: with laundry, dishes, and germs. I’ve made my way through three (or four?) boxes of Kleenex in the last few days and now I’ve moved on to our toilet paper supply. 

My to-do list is in even worse shape.

This is real life right now, and it’s not fun.
But I want to remember it.

I tend to forget things so quickly. But if I can remember feeling a little isolated, maybe I’ll be more inclined to make plans with friends when I'm in good health. If I can remember how it felt when friends came and took Ella to hang out at the zoo because they knew we needed a break, maybe I’ll be a better friend to someone myself. If I can remember the relief that came after getting medicine, maybe I won’t wait so long to go to the doctor next time.

And when all this medicine makes me feel better in a couple days, there’s still hope for February.

 

*Years later, I’m still challenged by this post from a friend of mine about hospitality. I re-read it every once in a while to remember.

a blogging confession.

I have a blog, but I am not a blogger.

I've broken pretty much all the blog rules — if there are such things. I don't write profound or poetic blog posts like others do. Even worse, I don't post consistently. 

Having a blog makes me really appreciate those who do blog and who do it well. People who have something to say, regularly, and use beautiful words to communicate it. Who aren't afraid to be real.

Most of the time, I hesitate to write out my thoughts on important subjects, because what if I change my mind about that topic in six months? I don't really want my outdated viewpoints permanently documented for the world. I've started many, many posts and never finished them for this very reason.

Christmas photo outtake, captured by  Brittany .

Christmas photo outtake, captured by Brittany.

On the other hand, having a blog has been a really great tool to help me process my thoughts. Usually, it feels like my mind is running in 30 directions at once, and I leap from thing to thing without ever forming a complete thought. When I take time to write about something, it's because I've paused long enough to think through the topic. It may not happen very often, but it's good for me. 

I don't use my blog to document life or even talk about my work. For me, this is a space where I can assemble fragments of thought into coherent ideas. 

Last year, I published a grand total of 7 posts over the course of 12 months. This is not something I feel guilty about. And, I didn't resolve to blog more this year.

I keep blogging because it forces me to pay attention to those little thoughts that just won't go away. To find answers to questions that I've wanted to ask myself. It's more for me than anyone else, and I'm okay with that.

Do what you do best...

All photos in this post by Brittany and Evan Hildreth

All photos in this post by Brittany and Evan Hildreth

It's been ten years since I took a college business class and learned the mantra "Do what you do best, and hire out the rest." I haven't forgotten it since.

This makes perfect sense in a business context, but the basic principle (you don't have to do everything) also applies to personal life. In some cases, it's simple: I don't know how to fix a toilet, so (maybe I will google a solution, but) ultimately I will call someone to fix it for me.

The trickier situations come about when there are things that I could do, but maybe shouldn't. Either I don't have the skill, the patience, or simply the bandwidth to tackle something. Often, it's just an area where I need to learn how to delegate — a skill I'm still working hard to develop.

Ella's birthday last week — during one of the busiest weeks of the year for me — was a good test of this principle. I wanted her birthday to be special, but knew I couldn't do it all.

1cake.jpg

We decided to throw a very small party — a collective undertaking if there ever was one. I made a tiny garland and the cakes — using sprinkles from my brother and sister-in-law, a frosting recipe and a candle from Erin, napkins and balloons from my mother-in-law, and plates borrowed from my mom. We added leftover flowers from Indie Craft, and enlisted the whole family's help getting the house ready.

Also, I turned over one of the most important tasks — capturing photos of Ella's first birthday party — to good friends and very capable photographers, Brittany and Evan. This was maybe the best decision of all. If you want my best party-throwing tip, this is it: hand the camera to someone else. The party was short and I didn't have to spend it worried about capturing the perfect shot or missing a moment.

And everything turned out just right. Special, and not stressful.

DSCF1767.JPG
DSCF1763.JPG
DSCF1847.JPG

It was exactly the kind of birthday party I wanted for Ella and a very fitting cap on what this first year of parenthood has been like — friends and family coming alongside, lending, sharing, giving — to make sure everything comes together.

Once again, I'm glad I don't need to do everything myself and thankful for the community of people who are there to remind me of that.

it’s a simple question.

image

The eve of my 32nd birthday seems like a great time for some reflection. Apparently this season of life is all about finding my limits, which includes the difficult lesson of learning how to say “No”.

Being a people pleaser at heart means I’m pretty bad at saying no. And you know what’s even harder, is saying no to good things that just aren’t right for me at this moment.

We’re in the middle of re-focusing and clarifying the mission of Indie Craft Parade. As a result, I’m having to come to terms with my own personal goals and motivations. To say it’s been healthy is an understatement.


Here’s what I’m currently saying yes and no to:

YES to creating more margins in our lives. Intentional negative space.
YES to a more flexible definition of productivity with a (now crawling!) baby.
NO to more stuff. Feeling the need to purge and clean house of all the excess.
NO to more commitments and projects. This should just officially become my life motto: “Just because you can, doesn’t mean you should”.
NO to wanting everyone else’s lives, houses, clothes, etc.
NO to perfection at the cost of real relationships.

The Makers Summit – 2015

For the past three years, our organization has hosted The Makers Summit, a business conference for artists and entrepreneurs. The 2015 event was this past weekend and so many good things were said!

The week was a blur for me. Nonstop work followed by crazy amounts of information and inspiration, all of which I’m still processing. Mostly, I’m writing this down so I don’t forget.

From Jeff Shinabarger:
“We will be known by the problems we solve.”
“The number one challenge in decision making is fear.”

From Nathan Bond:
“A great product is the best marketing.”
“You’re never and always ready.”
“If you’re selling a product and it doesn’t make you money, the product is broken.”

From Jeni Britton Bauer:
“Your quality is what you decide to make it.”
“Entrepreneurs will change the world.”
“Creativity is work.”
“An entrepreneurial mind is different than a business mind.”
“Creativity is impatient. Do the work when you’re inspired.”
“I only found success when I involved others.”
“I prefer the word "company” instead of “business” because it means you’re not alone.“

image

Eric Dodds on Productivity:
Create more than you consume.
Use social media with discipline.
Group similar tasks together.
Research shows it takes an average of 23 minutes to get back on track once you’re distracted/interrupted.

Will Shurtz:
Trends are today’s form of peer pressure.

Matt Moreau on hiring help:
Hiring an employee in investing in yourself.
Stop trying to find your clone. Chances are your clone is out there looking for someone to hire too.

So much to think about.

finishing > starting

“Kenneth Tuchman, founder of TeleTech, defined his own form of discipline in a recent interview. "I’m a finisher in a society of starters…I have this vision that is constantly evolving in my head.” (Adrienne Sanders, “Success Secrets of the Successful,” Forbes)

— from The Millionaire Mind, by Thomas J. Stanley

This phrase “a finisher in a society of starters” has stuck with me since reading it a few months ago. New ideas and projects are exciting, but I’m realizing that finishing them is much harder (and maybe even more important) than starting them.

My resolution for 2015 is to follow through.

I mean this in the most practical sense. To finish: books I’ve started, craft ideas I bought supplies for, home improvement projects that are 95% there. I will make a conscious effort to finish what can be finished, or decide to abandon the project altogether instead of letting it hang around half-done.

I guess I can start by finishing the book that inspired this post.

taking note

Yesterday was a lovely day. 

- yoga (for the second time in my life) with friends
- a little kitchen reorganization with my mom (nesting?) 
- a wonderful dinner out with Andrew and a night full of great conversation

I have no photos to prove these things. No selfie to show off the eye makeup that I never wear. 

But I am very sore, very rested, and I woke up to a clean kitchen. Days like yesterday are good for the soul. Things accomplished, but also time spent ‘just being’ (in the words of the yoga instructor). 

a legacy of getting things done.


image via Upstate Business Journal

Doing some reading and research about Greenville’s textile history and came across an article about Mary Putnam Gridley, someone I’d never heard of before today.

What a legacy wrapped up in this single sentence: “A tiny woman, under 5 feet tall and weighing about 90 pounds, she nevertheless was able to organize people and get things done.”

Mary influenced so many various facets of Greenville (the library, a farmer’s market, hospital, chamber of commerce, etc.) that the most likely reason for her notability almost pales in comparison — she was the first female mill president in the South.

Read more of her story here.

I don't know what it is.

Some days I can really appreciate beauty more than others. Maybe every designer feels this way, but there are days like today when I look at dribbble and am truly amazed and appreciative of all the work that’s being produced in our industry.

And then there are other days when the talent I see there is amazing in a really depressing way and I’m consumed with thoughts of self-doubt, and wonder ‘why am I not that good?’ 'why do I bother calling myself a designer?’, etc, etc…ad nauseum.

I’m not sure what makes the difference, but I’m really grateful for days like today when I can genuinely admire and appreciate others’ work for what it is. Without comparison or jealousy.

Here are a few things that I’ve found completely and totally inspiring lately.

Seed Circus lettering via Milkwood / Micah 6:8 by Matt Scribner / house sketch by Steve Wolf / the excellence of Trouvé Magazine

Thoughts on motherhood from a not-yet mom.

Technically, I’m a mother. 

I’m five months pregnant, so people tell me this is my first Mother’s Day. But for all practical purposes, I am not a mother. I haven’t experienced the labor, the sleepless nights or the constant care for another human being, so I don’t feel I have the right to claim that title just yet.


Pretty Mother’s Day flowers from our yard.

To be honest, choosing motherhood was actually fairly difficult for me. Possibly because it seemed to be a foregone conclusion most of my life. In church as a young girl, I always got the feeling that education was good and all, but really, every girl was supposed to become a mom. Unfortunately, I can’t say we’ve come all that far in thirty years. Even in the past week, I’ve heard things like ‘you’ll never know true love until you have your child’ or 'now that I have children, my life has true meaning’.

I know these things are said with good intentions, but I don’t think people realize the importance they’re placing on a single (albeit all-encompassing) aspect of their lives and the message it’s sending. I’m curious how my feelings about this topic will grow and change in the next year, when I have a little girl standing in front of me. But one of the things I want to teach her is that her value does not depend on other people

And wouldn’t those 'other people’ include children?

I want her to know that having or not having children does not make her more of a woman. Somehow, even in our Christian communities, this is not a message that girls hear loud and clear. This time last year, a friend wrote on Facebook as part of a Mother’s Day post “You don’t have to be a mother to be a valuable woman.” It stopped me in my tracks and it brought me to tears. This was the core issue I had been wrestling with for the past few years: Did God really create women just for the purpose of bearing children? If I don’t have a desire to have children, does that make me a bad person? If this is supposed to be my purpose in life, is something wrong with me for not wanting it?


Me, with my mom and my grandma.

Today I want to honor my mother, grandmother and all the women in my life who have cared for me over the years. I will wish a Happy Mother’s Day to women who are caring for the children in their lives — their own or not. I think the true sacrifices of motherhood deserve to be honored, not idolized.

I’m so grateful for a good friend who asked me hard questions and helped me work through some of these issues. And thankful that in spite of our hangups, God can still make truth clear — our value does not depend on other people.

It’s a lesson I think motherhood (ironically) will continue to teach me every day.

Along these same lines, I really appreciated this article by Anne Lamott yesterday. Very similar to what I’m trying to say, but much more articulate.

Not as busy as we think.

“The art of busyness is to convey genuine alarm at the pace of your life and a helpless resignation, as if someone else is setting the clock, and yet simultaneously make it clear that you are completely on top of your game. These are not exactly humble brags. They are more like fretful brags, and they are increasingly becoming the idiom of our age.”

“The answer to feeling oppressively busy, he says, is to stop telling yourself that you’re oppressively busy, because the truth is that we are all much less busy than we think we are.”

— Excerpts from Hannah Rosin’s article about the book Overwhelmed: Work, Love and Play when No One Has the Time.

I’m already looking forward to reading this.