We have been in a good, consistent groove in our household for while with the way we function. We have some pretty specific practices in place for handling the budget, school, household chores and general everyday stuff. But today I turned on the television-the one with the antenna on top that I’ve previously written about-and found that the five good channels we used to get now consists of one that we can hear clearly but not see, two that look mostly fuzzy but can’t hear, and one that is just not there anymore. We get ONE channel in decently. My husband called an antenna installer and learned that, because we live up against the mountain that we need a line of sight over, we pretty much won’t get much of anything out of an antenna than we hadn’t previously gotten (which we were reasonably content with) and at this point maybe even less-even with a giant old-fashioned style mounted antenna on the roof since we can’t be sure what caused this disruption to begin with. We also learned that the tree that has been bare the better part of the year since we moved into this house has caused further disruption by doing the darndest thing: growing leaves. So, faced with absolutely no television reception early this morning (except for a very low-budget Christian talk show out of Texas that manages to come in quite clearly) I fiddled with the antenna a while with no luck. I grabbed my laptop and a cup of coffee. My toddler grabbed his shoes and pointed out to the back yard. I thought-heck why not? So out we went in pajamas and sandals, with coffee and laptop and his breakfast in tow and sat outside for a change of scenery. As I sat there watching him puttering in the back yard, digging in the dirt, inspecting rocks, sitting on wet grass and happy as can be I considered if it’s worth the $35 a month for basic cable and if it fits our current goals and plans. It occurred to me as I sat there, enjoying the warm early morning summer sounds of the desert, the buzzing bees, the chirping birds, the little dog next door yapping out a hello to my dog who was lazily ignoring it, that sometimes changing your vantage point, even if it’s just sitting outside when you normally don’t, can help change your perspective on your needs and your wants. Inside the house, as I’d poured my coffee, I was seriously considering finding that $35 for cable in my budget today and calling the cable company this afternoon. But as I sat out there, watching my child play, surfing news online and tapping away for this post, I found myself at peace with the sounds of summer around me. I still need to review whether our household practice of having no cable is going to continue or not, but I’m taking the weekend to consider this practice from another perspective. I’ll keep you posted.
How about you? Do you give yourself time and space to consider your choices carefully? Do you just jump in right away and hang on?