The Project


I love a project, I do. I remember vividly being at school and doing a project for Music on the composer Haydn. If my teacher had used the word ‘homework’ – which it was – I wouldn’t have been interested. Homework was something that just had to be done and got out of the way. But because she called it a project, well, let’s just say that by the time that project was handed in a couple of weeks later it was in its own special ring binder, and even had a cassette {old school} taped to the front of the folder with music clips that corresponded to different parts of the text within. Geek? Yes. OTT? Oh yes. But proof that if you want me to do a job well you have to call it by the magic P word? I think so.

My Filofax? A project on organisation. My day job? A whole series of projects, all intertwined. My dog? Well – she’s proof that projects sometimes have minds of their own.

If you happen to have the job title of “Project Manager” I am automatically going to think you’re really cool and accomplished. There’s something about planning it all out, writing a to-do list, dedicating a shiny new folder and notebook to the task, researching and finally, standing back and admiring something you can be proud of.

The only problem is, some projects are ongoing, sometimes for weeks, months, or even years. Sometimes they go on for so long that I forget they were a project at all, and they take on a more stressful nature. That’s kind of what happened with this blog.

I started it in 2012 for fun, for creative expression and for documentation. I loved writing my blog and took it seriously, but two years down the line it was getting too hard to find time to spend half my Saturday taking two week’s worth of photographs, then every Sunday editing the same. If the weather didn’t play ball and I couldn’t take photos at all – which could be tricky for six months of the year – my whole blogging schedule would be knocked out of kilter. When life happened and I couldn’t blog with as much frequency, instead of thinking, “hey, it’s just a fun project”, I’d feel frustrated. Suddenly the blog had become a chore, like that homework of years ago. So I stopped blogging in order to have a rest and concentrate on other areas of life.

You can guess how that panned out, because you’re reading a blog post! The thing is that while time has been racing by and I’ve been stuck into getting into a new job and generally being a very busy bee {accompanied by a very busy Bea}, I haven’t stopped noticing the little things that make me smile. I haven’t stopped crafting or painting buttons, and I haven’t stopped thinking, aha, that would make such a good blog post. Time is tight, as it is for most of us, but the need and desire to blog is still very much there.

I think there are a lot of us reading other fantastic blogs, and in being so impressed by their brilliant photography and frequent posting and seemingly constant sharing of original craft makes/outfits/holidays/weddings/home interiors/parties we put pressure on ourselves to match that standard. We forget that they might be blogging for different reasons to us. Perhaps they earn an income from their blog and so necessarily spend a lot more time on it. Perhaps they are part of a team all producing great content for that one site. Perhaps they have a photographer friend who is able to follow them around taking fantastic candid shots. Perhaps their everyday life is their blog content – family life, their job, a trip to the new market down the road, so they don’t have to spend their Saturdays engineering content especially, just to then faff about trying to get large pieces of white board to balance at the right angle so when the sun finally appears they can leap into action, take fifty photographs they can then edit while Britain’s Got Talent is on. We all have differing amounts of free time, priorities and motivations.

Oh the pressure we put on ourselves. On Thursday I was reading one such of these wonderful blogs, one I’ve been reading for a long time. Sarah’s post Why starting a blog is a terrible idea essentially put into words what I’ve been vaguely pondering for a long time. Blogging is a terrible idea when you blog for the wrong reasons. When you blog because it’s become an unpaid job you have given yourself, rather than because it’s quite simply a fun pastime which, if you’re very lucky, might just inspire a reader or two while you’re at it.

So I’m back blogging, but this time it’s project-based. Sometimes the project will simply to be to produce a blog post from start to finish. Other times the project will be to make some improvements to the look of the blog, or work on my photography. I won’t promise that posts will be regular, but I do hope they will be more frequent than they have been. If they aren’t, what does it matter? I believe that me with a project is the me at my best, so I will try to maintain this new perspective and continue to document all that brings me joy and inspiration. I hope you’ll hop back aboard the good ship Tea With Miss Beatrix. I warn you though; the destination is unclear.


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