#90: How I Use Pinterest

#90: How I Use Pinterest

It would be hypocritical of me to write a blog entry about how I don’t like social media. And, for the most part, it would be untrue. I love checking Facebook to see what’s going on in the world of my friends, and I go on Twitter spurts from time to time.

From time to time, I get into conversations about Pinterest with someone. Some people love it, some people hate it, some people say, “I don’t get it.”

I love it. I think it’s an incredibly handy tool to use as I’m trolling the internets, finding specific things for my house, garden, yard, and sometimes-crafty self. It is much more logical and efficient than bookmarking or just trying to remember every site I visit.

But I don’t use it as a social media tool. There are a few people who are interior designers whose pins I stalk, but otherwise, I’m not seeing the latest decadent chocolate and peanut-butter cheesecake recipe or quote about the beauty of children. Here are a few reasons why:

1. I don’t like to feel inadequate.

Maybe it’s because I can be an over-sensitive soul. But if you’re all out there sewing bunting for your children’s parties, I’m gonna feel judged when I don’t. So instead, I just ignore what “everyone” is doing and follow my heart.

2. I want to carefully choose who and what is influencing me.

For a short time last year, Randy and I participated in a Bible study with some folks we’d never met before. They lived nearby, but in a totally different world. Their multi-million dollar homes were lovely and full of the latest amenities. But in my humble opinion… how to say… their perfectly-matched and expensively furnished homes lacked… soul. I’m sure that everything I saw was the best of the best. They had everything that everyone seems to want in their homes right now, and that is what their homes spoke to me: “We have everything that everyone wants in their homes right now.”

I want my home to say different things. I want my home to say, “Sometimes I experiment with being an artist.” “My children can build great forts with these pillows.” “This coffee table is where your feet can go when you sit here.” “I love books.” “You are welcomed here.”

I’m not saying that I don’t let anything influence me – oh my, no. I just want to be really selective.

3. I want to attend more to how things ARE in my family than how things look.

There are surely a few crafty and creative souls who are the high priestesses of Pinterest, operating in their areas of bliss and giftedness – and God bless ‘em. They propagate pins with perfect kids’ parties, amazing DIY transformations, and lovely signs with old home addresses, birth dates, and “family values.”

But I don’t have time to obsess about signs in cute fonts with our family values on them. Instead, I am working hard to model them for my children day by day, hour by hour.

And when my children are older, they will not remember if I expertly incorporated a theme into every birthday party. They don’t care about that, let’s be honest. I plan their birthday parties with one thing in mind: them. What will be fun for them? This year, that meant a very un-Pinterest-worthy birthday party with an inflatable pool, sand and water table, and bubble machine set up in front of our house. They had a wildly good time with just their cousins and a few friends from school.

I’m not judging anyone for perfect kid parties, and I won’t tell you that I’ve never ever gotten a cute cupcake idea from the internet. (I do wonder about those “family values” signs, but that’s another blog post altogether…)

All I’m saying is this: we have plenty of things out there that can make us feel inadequate – especially those of us with young children – and can lead us to live lives without authenticity. In this one little area – Pinterest, and the larger internet vortex telling me how to do it all perfectly – I’m swimming upstream.

Copy Protected by Chetans WP-Copyprotect. © 2012 Book of Pamphlets