My Guilty Little Off-Season Secret #1
I have to admit that I am a poor excuse for a Wisconsinite sometimes. And one of those times is winter.
My dad used to say that he'd never move to a place without all four seasons because he would miss the changes. I wholeheartedly adopted his attitude. Spring and fall are my favorite parts of the year; the colors of budding plants and fading trees, the fresh smell of rain and the crisp feel of those first brisk winds, that sensation in the air that just makes you FEEL change... I would miss those things if I left this balanced climate behind and traded them in for the palm trees I love to visit. But there's one thing I really have to struggle to enjoy about it, and that's winter.
Winter is dreary and lacks the bold colors I love so much.
It presents dangers of slipping on ice or scary car accidents or freezing your fingers off. It brings with it freezing steering wheels and the chore I hate more than anything: shoveling the driveway (note to self: buy snow blower this year).
As a wedding photographer, however, I do appreciate having a little bit of a slower season during these few freezing months. Surprisingly (insert sarcasm here), most couples prefer warmer months for weddings and engagement portraits! In the past few years of owning my business I have created a little bit of a routine for this time of year. While I still work hard catching up on albums and preparing for next year (not to mention doing taxes, ugh), I make sure to enjoy the downtime in my own little way. Evenings become a bit more relaxed. Mornings become a little slower and we linger in bed just a little longer to snuggle our puppies. Weekends become family time again. And that family time usually entails two important activities:
1) Lots of knitting.
2) Hours of World of Warcraft.
Yes, you read that right. World of Warcraft.
As in fantasy world, flying-around-on-dragons, dungeon-running, cape-crafting, orc-immolating World of Warcraft. More specifically, I am a level 90 Dranei holy/shadow priest named "Bokeh." And admitting that is so freeing. Yes. I'm a dork. In the words of Jen from "The IT Crowd," ICH. BIN. EIN. NERD!
How did this happen? I'm a girly, extroverted entrepreneur.
I didn't grow up playing video games. I grew up watching my brother play video games and wondering how he could possibly find them so fascinating. So when I met my hubby who was a gamer from the start of our story, I struggled a little bit with it. He struggled with my extroverted-ness, too. Eventually I got bored of watching him and his friends play while I hung out in the corner of the room doing whatever else I was doing, and I decided on a final strategy:
If you can't beat 'em... Join 'em.
And so I did. One night, my hubby invited all his friends over and set up an extra PC and a new account. All of us started brand new characters together. My patient honey and all of his friends slowly taught me the game and played through the most boring beginning stages with me (yes, a lot of boar-killing). It took me a while, but I got the hang of it and began to truly enjoy the game. Now, at least six years later, here we are. Once or twice a week, we log in and play for a little while. We enjoy a treat, throw on our favorite Star Trek or Frasier episodes, and fight the good fight "For The Alliance" (what, did you think I would play a horde??) to the soundtrack of snoring pugs snuggled into our laps.
And I. LOVE. IT.
So here's your challenge: you know that activity of his or hers that you just don't get? Give it a shot this year. Step out of your comfort zone and into their zone instead- the love of your life will help you along. Perhaps you'll actually enjoy it. Perhaps you'll discover a whole new favorite date night that you never knew could be so fun!