Whilst I’ve been very fortunate to have not been significantly affected in most ways by the pandemic and lockdown, I’ve come to realise that some of my regular routines have shifted, and made it more difficult to keep things flowing.
Photography to some extent, and writing, to a greater extent, are my main activities, outside of work and family, and both have lost some of their regularity in my life.
This week, we’re embarking on numerous changes.
Schools are back for the first time in nearly six months, with our middle son returning to the same (primary) school, and our oldest daughter starting secondary.
My wife is returning to work (also in school) after an unexpectedly long maternity leave, and so our youngest (15 months) will embark on different childcare arrangements throughout the week, involving my wife and I, a grandparent, an aunty and a neighbour who’s also a professional child minder.
Our middle son also resumes fully his three nights a week trampolining, which involves further juggling, to-ing and fro-ing.
My own work, already around 50/50 between working from home (WFH) and office since a few months back, will be stretched and shaped further both to weave in the above commitments, and run the tricky rota at work to ensure everyone has equal time at home and at work – even though some have embraced WFH hugely more enthusiastically than others.
Needless to say, much will be changing, compared with what’s been in some ways an idyllically relaxed few months, and we plan to quickly build new routines into our lives to ensure everything runs as smoothly as possible.
Into this mix comes my photography and writing.
In the past I typically went for a photowalk at least one day of Friday, Saturday and Sunday, though this has been more erratic recently.
There’s no reason why this can’t return, however.
I used to write most when my son was at his trampolining, as the club’s wi-fi was free and more than enough for my WordPress needs.
Over each week, I’d manage at least three, maybe four hours of solid writing time.
Again this has been far more hit and miss more recently, and even with returning to three sessions a week, the club is no longer allowing parents to stay in the building (or even enter it).
So I can either come home (25 mins each way, so something of a waste of time and fuel) or set up some kind of writing arrangement in the car outside with a borrowed Chromebook hooked up to my phone’s wi-fi hotspot.
Do-able, but not ideal. Especially as the evenings turn cooler too.
Plus one of the days I’ll have our youngest boy, so he won’t want to sit patiently in the car whilst I write, and I’ll likely bring him home in between.
My draft plan is to set aside at least two, perhaps three, evenings a week where I can spend 90 minutes writing, after everything else is done – school, work, homework, eating, showers, reading and so on.
We’ll see how this goes in the coming days and weeks.
It might be that I write and publish less, which isn’t something I want to do, as I love writing and it does give me valuable downtime from the day to day.
And photography is almost as fundamental too, and not something I intend to neglect.
How about you? How do your photography and writing schedules fit in with the rest of your life?
Please let us know in the comments below (and don’t forget to tick the “Notify me of new comments via email” box to follow the conversation).
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