Saturday, September 25, 2010

trying to stay organized


I love these Grab N Go containers I bought for work but, despite my best efforts to find it, there is no organizer out there that will provide the solution to all my organizational needs. I am really trying to be organized, with menu plans, daily To Do lists, calendars that send me email reminders for appointments, etc. But life also requires that I be flexible enough to react to changing circumstances, and take advantage of opportunities as they arise. My life also has blurry lines between work and home life, making it harder to focus on one thing at a time.

For example, my day yesterday: (for context, Friday is supposed to be my day off work, and Hypatia doesn't have preschool on Fridays)

2:30 am, my daughter wakes me up crying because she has wet the bed. It takes a half hour to bathe her, change the bed linens, and get her back to bed.

7am, I wake up. I've overslept, and this will make it hard for me to do my morning yoga. My husband is already up and working on his computer, in his boxer shorts. I head into the bathroom, and my cell phone rings while I'm in there. Checking the voicemail, our new washing machine is scheduled to be delivered between 8am and noon. I tell my husband to go get in the shower now, so he could accept delivery if it came while I get the boy to school.

Already, my normal morning routine is messed up, and I will now not do any yoga or meditation.

7:30 am, I am about to get dressed. Carbon yells from the living room that the washer delivery is here NOW. Chaos, and I have to open the door and deal with it in my pj's and without brushing my hair.

So now my routine is really messed up.

8:00 am finds me packing a lunch box and signing for the washing machine, then throwing a load of laundry from Hypatia's night time accident into the brand new machine. I took the boy to school, but left Hypatia at home since my husband works from home on Fridays.

8:30 am, and I'm chatting with the staff at school, reminding them I'll pick Carbon up early. I also get asked to help with a bake sale fundraiser next Friday, and I agree to bake and to help set up the booth.

9:00 am, I'm back home. I start to futz around with all the backed up laundry, but then I notice that it looks like the sky might stay clear all day.

Opportunity is knocking, so I climb up on the roof and redo the flashing I've added to the uphill of my chimney. I did my first attempt about a week ago, and it didn't come out very well. My second go at it was much better, but took me a long time as I don't really know what I'm doing.

10 am, I'm off the roof, and out in the backyard still taking advantage of the lack of rain. The yard hadn't been cleaned in a long time, so there was a lot of dog and chicken poop for me to scoop up, and we are also trying to naturally dispose of the "green" kitty litter and contents from our house cats - so I needed to dig a new big hole in the area of the yard designated for this purpose. Digging and scooping would have been followed by weed whipping, except that my weed whip battery was dead.

11 ish, I realize I have not eaten anything and that all this manual labor with no food has messed up my blood sugar. I heat up some left-over bread strata and pour myself a glass of fruit juice.

11:30 I'm back to the laundry again.

12:00 My husband asks me if I want to go out to lunch with him, and I realize how late it has gotten in the day. Hypatia and I have to run for the Farmer's Market. At the market I run into three people from church and have to stop and talk to them about various things. We also pick up our CSA, buy some apples, and some bacon.

12:40 We race off to pick Carbon up from school

1:00 We drop Carbon off at a science workshop at the Children's Museum.

1:15 Hypatia and I meet my husband for lunch.

2:00 Hypatia and I go to the library, where I get some books for work and some for home. Is it a work errand or a home errand? We also run into a person from church and have to chat with them about a project that is coming up.

2:30 Hypatia and I get back to the museum, and play for half an hour. I'm half playing and half reading a book from my professional development stack.

3:00 Carbon is supposed to be done, but he's still working on making a sheet of paper. We stay and help him finish and clean up.

3:15 I buy them both ice creams as we leave the museum. We drive around for a bit looking for a parking spot near the downtown toy store.

3:30 We head into the toy store to buy a gift for a friend of Hypatia's . The children take forever picking it out, and I end up finding three things I want to buy for work, two of which I pay for myself because they're renewable energy science kits that Carbon can keep and reuse after I use them at church. Carbon also talks me into buying him and Ugly Doll - I'm getting tired and my will power is low!

4:00 We get back home. I thought I'd be home right after 3:00, so I am now short on time for the next task of the day. I race to get a roast and veggies into the oven for the family's dinner, and make a potato salad from scratch to take to work that night. I also wash all the dishes and leave the kitchen pretty clean.

5:30 I'm racing out the door with my BBQ grill loaded in the car, and I stop at the grocery store on the way to work to buy cereal and milk and coals, all for the youth group to consume.

6:00 I get to work, and start setting up for the youth group BBQ.

7:00 Youth and parents and advisors arrive, and we have a meal together and talk about the new program year for the high school group. They are all spending the night with two adult chaperones, so I give them the lecture about church rules and curfew and all that stuff I'm supposed to say each time.

9:30 I get home, and Hypatia is already asleep. I'm told dinner was good when it came out of the oven. My husband is reading Carbon's bedtime story, but we get into a bit of kerfluffle of hurt feelings and each one of us feeling guilty and so we both end up in the kitchen washing dinner dishes before he goes back to finishing the chapter for Carbon.

At this point I get two calls on my cell phone from folks who are teaching an Adult Education class at the church at 10 am the next morning. They need audio/visual equipment and support, so I promise to be at church by 9:15 the next morning to help them.

I open a bottle of wine, and we each have a glass as Carbon goes to bed.

10:00 I've brought my work laptop home with me, and I finish making up a postcard I need to have copied and ready to hand out on Sunday. I also watch an episode of The Daily Show off the internet while I work on it.

10:40 We head to bed, and I set my alarm clock for 7 am the next day.

It was a crazy, tiring day, but all my days seem to end up like this. I have to have the To Do Lists and the Shopping Lists and the Menu Plans and the Schedule and the Packing Lists, or I would just go crazy. Even with all that effort at staying organized, I still oversleep, fall behind, am surprised when deliveries come early, and have to change plans for things like weather, batteries, or a husband who wants to have lunch with me.

Such is life!

1 comment:

  1. I realize this is probably not what you meant, but I have a "day planner" that I have used for years. I am a person who needs a written planner, not just an electronic one. I haven't found anything perfect, but I really, really have come to adore my "Amy Knapp's Family Organizer:"