bike on bridge

Relish in revelry, know what’s important, & remember you’re not thought of that much

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by Tsh

Tsh is the founder of this blog and lives in Bend, Oregon with her husband and 3 kids. Her latest book is Notes From a Blue Bike, and believes a passport is one of the world's greatest textbooks.

I admit to having the hardest time writing lately. What with the book release in a few days, my plate has brimmed to overflow; guest posts and radio interviews and magazine articles taunt me like heaps of ice cream scoop-shaped mashed potatoes on my cafeteria tray.

I literally have about five half-written articles staring at me on my computer screen right now. Somehow, I just can’t finish them. Apparently I even did this weird face-arm-waving-a-wand gesture at my laptop just now, because Kyle just leaned over and looked at my screen, curious what could be bewitching me so. I don’t know. It’s just the wallpaper of my kids playing in the snow and 18 thousand run-on sentences, phrases, one-word notes, a paragraph here and there, and a list I typed myself that I can no longer decipher.

This must be what it looks like mere days before your next baby releases to the world and asks to reside on the shelves in people’s living rooms. When you’ve slit open your belly, let your guts spill on paper, and then wrapped them up in a gorgeous cover and have hung them up for sale on Amazon.

I’ve had book releases before, but it’s been awhile, and I’ve grown as a person since those babies. I feel more torn than ever between wanting and loving to promote this book—because I truly do LOVE the message and believe wholeheartedly in it—and wanting to say the heck with it, put on comfy pants, and watch Sherlock.

You know what? I think I’ll do both.

Because at the end of the day, I just want to be a person here. A regular person who blogs, who shares this online space with you to talk about the stuff of life—particularly, living simply and intentionally so that we can live our unconventional lives full of passion—but who also loves the little, everyday, non-Internet parts of life.

I don’t feel badly about asking you to consider buying the book, because I really do believe the words will encourage you. Naysayers may misunderstand my heart (and the publishers’) by saying ‘thank you for pre-ordering’ with freebies, and that’s okay. I know what I mean, and I think the majority of you do, too, so I’m sleeping just fine at night.

But I think this is not unlike that time when you’ve got about two weeks until your wedding, and you realize that a lot of your pie-in-the-sky ideas about your wedding just ain’t gonna happen—and you’re actually fine with that, because at the end of the day you just want to be married. And so your brain keeps knee-jerking back to those ideas, but your emotions are telling it NO, it’s okay, the wedding will be great as it is. You don’t need to add more sprinkles to the cupcakes.

Blue Bike rolls out on Tuesday, and it’ll be great. It’s all good as it is. My family and I will fly to Austin on Wednesday, celebrate this new baby with a fun party, then hit the road soon after to meet some of you and say thank you in person.

It’ll be fun.

20 things I'd tell my 20-something self, by Tsh Oxenreider

Funnily enough, this reminds me of advice I’ve already shared in the new, short e-book I wrote called 20 Things I’d Tell My 20-Something Self (it’s one of the freebies for pre-ordering). Like kicking my own self in the pants, I reread the book today and remembered what I already know to be true. Stuff like:

7. It’s okay to relish some light-hearted revelry.

“Downtime is good for your body and soul—in fact, if you don’t get enough of it, you’ll burn out. Not everything has to be intentional continuing education, or deep and purposeful, or otherwise eternally significant.”

and…

14. People aren’t thinking of you nearly as much as you think they are.

“So much of my twenties was about self-discovery, but it was easily clouded with the opinions of others. Or rather, what I thought were the opinions of others. I blush now when I think about how much weight I gave to what I thought were other people’s sizing up and measuring of my life.”

and…

16. Learn the difference between the urgent and the important.

“Urgent tasks require immediate attention and usually put us in reactive mode, because they scream Now!. Important tasks contribute to our life’s long-term mission, goals, and dreams, and they tend to be well-mannered because they wait patiently for us to respond rationally.”

Yes.

I think the reason my writing has started and stopped in fits and spurts all week is because I’m taking it too seriously. I’m pushing down on the scale and adding weight to this thing called “book release.”

My friend Emily has said it before—it’s not like we’re finding a cure for cancer here with our writing (though wouldn’t that be amazing?). I love the message in Blue Bike, that we really can slow down and live more intentionally, so long as we’re willing to swim upstream from the culture—but at the end of it all, life will go on after Tuesday.

And in fact, if I stop to think about it, all this work on my plate really is an enormous blessing. I get to love what I do for work. My words can potentially encourage you and your family to go and be brave and do things that better align with your passions and priorities.

Yes, please. I’ll take another mashed potato portion of that. Any day.

Guys, thanks. Thanks for letting me be a bit crazy here on a Friday. And thanks, to those of you who have, for pre-ordering the book. It should be in your mailbox in the next few days. You still can, if you haven’t yet.

Time to watch Martin Freeman and Benedict Cumberbatch.

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Comments

  1. So impressed you’ve even managed to compile your thoughts into a post 4 days out from release. You have the perseverance of a marathon runner, hats off to you! May you fully enjoy and celebrate the accomplishment as you release and tour the book. You are a blessing to so many xx

  2. I don’t even know how your brain is functioning after all you’ve been doing and writing! I hope you enjoy the book tour!

    I did pre-order your book here in the UK. So looking forward to reading it!

  3. avatar
    Jennifer Ott says:

    I am looking forward to reading your baby :)! Thank you for sharing your heart and this journey with us.

  4. I’m proud of you, friend. You work hard at sharing your heart with all of us in so many ways, but especially with your upcoming book, and you deserve your success. To know you, even a little, is to know your heart. Ultimately, His smile is the only one that truly matters.
    Enjoy the party! Sorry that we’re too far away to make it!

    • Hannah! Thank you so much. Wish we could hang out at that Monkey coffee shop together right now (what was that place called again?). So thankful for you! And am excited for what y’all are doing right now. :)

  5. I think it’s pretty impressive that you get any words on paper this week… This week, you should just enjoy all that is happening and not worry. At this point, little can be done or changed. But much can be celebrated :-)
    Congratulations on the new book!

  6. Looking forward to getting my copy of your new book! Hang in there — the excitement and adrenaline of something new can sometimes seem like more than we can handle but it’s all for a good purpose. Congrats on your achievement!! :)

  7. I look forward to reading your book, Tsh! I’ve never been a very celebrity focused person but I had an interesting experience recently where I met a very popular blogger who happens to live in our area. I hadn’t really thought that I put bloggers in a not-quite-normal-person category but I realized that….well, I do. I was struck by how normal she was. Can you believe her husband occasionally annoys her like mine does me? And her kids actually act like normal kids? Ridiculous, right?

    Anyway, thanks for what you do and know that we think you’re pretty awesome which is why some of us (ahem) have been reading for many, many years and continue to do so. :-)

  8. Finally decided to buy the book : ) You have created excitement and I am Looking forward to reading your treasure. You enthusiasm for books is inspiring.

  9. Best wishes with your book! My daughter loves Sherlock, too! It actually inspired her curriculum for next year.

  10. You are awesome. That is all.

  11. Just finished your book last night actually. I had a ARC from Thomas Nelson. It was great and I enjoyed every word. Excited to pass it along to friends I know will enjoy the message. Congratulations and thanks for sharing your heart with all of us.

    • Thanks so much, Jessica! Appreciate it. And I’ve gotta say… the final version is SO much better than the ARC. So, just so you know. :)

      Appreciate it so much!

  12. Good for you.

    I have two releases next year, and I’m hoping I’ve grown since my first, where days before I wanted to hide under the bed and take it all back. The day my book launched was glorious — I was so thrilled, I high-fived a random guy on my morning run — but the anticipation, preparation, and rumination took its toll. I got a killer cold a week out and had to lay up for some time.

    I think we (read: I) get this idea that the tiny, tiny, tiny bit we control in releasing a book into the world is some magical formula that if not followed perfectly will result in obscurity. And that’s a huge lie.

    Enjoy the ride. Know your beautiful work is done. Now is the time to celebrate (…after you get those articles off your plate!).

  13. Go watch Sherlock and enjoy every minute. Cheering you on in this adventure. Can’t wait to read.

  14. Enjoy these days leading up to the release. Can’t wait to read it!

  15. Congrats on the new baby.
    But I really gravitated toward this point, “People aren’t thinking of you nearly as much as you think they are.”

    What a life changing principle—which goes toward your first point about just letting go. Once we figure out that people really dont care about us, then we can concentrate on what God thinks

  16. Ugh, no. 14 is SO familiar to me. It’s so easy to be rational when everything is going well, but when anything unpleasant or shameful or disappointing happens, the first place my brain goes is to what OTHER people are thinking. So silly because a) they’ve got their own concerns and b) most people are nice, so if they’re thinking of me at all it’s probably hopeful/kind/supportive, not malicious. And yet … and yet … none of this stops the old brain from telling me how much I’ve disappointed others on the daily. I just want to be a person here too, but sometimes it’s hard. I think I’ll take your approach: deal with it AND put on comfy pants. This post is inspirational!

  17. Sometimes simple reminders of life lessons gone by are all we need to stay grounded even in our 30’s :) Loved reading this!

  18. Woo Hoo! So excited about the book release. And Love the ebook too! Thanks Tsh!

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