Notes from a Blue Bike by Tsh Oxenreider was one I wanted to read immediately upon hearing about it. I'm not a reader of her blog but the subtitle The Art of Living Intentionally in a Chaotic World drew me in.
I savored the first half of this book. I connected with her writing as well as the message. Slow down. Live the life you want to live. I doled out the book in portions, allowing myself to read one section a day. It was a treat to me.
I became disenchanted when I hit the "Work" section. Tsh and her husband are able to live off her blog income, therefore they both work from home and are allowed luxuries that the typical American working family is not. It actually became depressing reading that section as living life intentionally only seemed possible by living that type of life. Even when she acknowledged that not everyone was self-employed she only used atypical examples of other familiy situations. On page 88 she went so far as to write "Don't waste your years punching the time clocks"; if only it were that easy!
The education section bothered me as well. I'm not sure if I am just being extra judge-mental after the section on "Work", but I am prefacing this with the fact that I agree with Tsh in the fact that homeschooling doesn't work for every family, so I don't feel I am judging her for putting her children back into the school system.
I think that it's the fact that her words contradicted each other. For example, the reason that self-employment is so great for them is that it gives their family the sense to fly by the seat of their pants, be closer as a family, and do what is best for their family. Yet on page 112 she writes about how tiring it is to homeschool all day and then her and her husband have to work on the websites all evening (yet, if both she and her husband work from home why could they not stagger their work schedules?). She goes on to say, "I could stop blogging altogether, but one of us would have to find another job to put bread on the table, and we honestly loved our work." It makes it sound as though she is choosing work over family, which in the previous chapter of work she stated that self-employment meant you didn't have to do that.
Towards the end of the education section she writes, "One of my reasons for homeschooling was so I'd get to learn. But there's nothing that says my kids need to be homeschooled in order for their mom to learn new things." This section had so much about Tsh's writing, alone time, what she wants that it contradicts much of the book about what is good for the family.
I loved the beginning of the book; I'd recommend it for that aspect alone. It will be added to my bookshelf (and it's rare that I keep a book to read again!) but I'll skip over the work and education sections when re-reading it next time.
Disclaimer: This book was given to me by BookLook in exchange for an honest review.