Recipes for Productivity


This is the first non-food picture I’ve really used in this blog (gardening being, very tangentially and in a weird time line, a food concept). As I finish the last few recipes from my friends and family and start working on recipes given me by many other bloggers, I’ve been thinking a lot about summer break; not just the fact that it’s a break, but that it’s a break in order to be able to make some things happen.

I listen to a lot of podcasts on my commute, and one of them recently discussed what we mean when we say productivity; it isn’t enough that we feel stressed, or that we are never sitting still. If anything, those structures seem to sometimes reduce the projects we actually finish.

I’m realizing that I want to be pouring more resources into my community, family, and friends. That sounds vague, I know, but what I want is to be spending my time on things that add value; taking ingredients and turning them into a meal, or sweeping the house so it’s already clean when Husband gets home so that he doesn’t have to do it, or writing a novel (!!!) so that future nerdy 12-year-olds can feel some of the wonder that novels gave me when I was their age… those are the things that seem valuable to me. If I was in a really bad place right now, productivity might be measured in money earned, but I’m doing okay right now, and it seems more important, both now and in worse conditions, to have good family and friends who are happy and healthy around me, than just to have another dollar.

So, as alluded, I will keep cooking, take on more home duties (Husband’s job has no summer break, so this seems like it will make our time together more fun), and work on my novel. I have also been crocheting a lot, including the above baby blanket, in order to raise money for Relay for Life, which is next weekend! I am really excited to meet all the other people who have been part of the effort around town and have a big cancer-fighting party with them.

All this to ask: what activities do you love that contribute to the resources and value in your community, family, and friends? These are simpler than we think, but still so important. What activities matter to you that don’t get their fair value in money/in the marketplace? How do you fight for the time and energy to spend on these pursuits?


5 comments on “Recipes for Productivity

  1. I love to can as much as I can. What best part is my hubby is right next to me for some of it and that makes it even better. Plus gifting it to friends and family!


    • Nice! What comes out best (like, tastiest coming out of the can?) – I’m wanting to try this for the first time today, and would love to stack the odds in my favor, hahaha.


      • peaches in a light syrup are amazing (although my husband would say heavy syrup is better). Applebutter is also a family favorite. Pickles, pears, jams, and pie filling are as far as I have gone. I’m going to explore more this year!


  2. ibaker6522 says:

    you are a teacher invested in your community?


  3. I agree about productivity. I am retired and finally healthy enough to be productive. I see it as a continuation of working for a living, but what I am producing now is done with love and the things I’m creating are for the good of those around me. Meals cooked with love. Sweaters knitted with love, a novel being written for my own soul. Thank you for this.


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