Saturday, December 3, 2011
Ok, I admit that this is getting to be a bit much...but this is probably going to be the last post in this series. I do have to admit that, yes, I do indeed have yet another buddy. One that I probably couldn't live without either. I have tried. Many times over. And sadly, I have failed. Each time. It's called....are ya ready?????
"The List". Yup, these friends of mine sure are one of a kind, aren't they? uh, huh. They are.
So what? So I don't re-invent the wheel. Big deal. At least, I make them my own, right?
So, what is up with this list anyway? Well, if we're speaking in REAL reality, not my recent Twilight Zone reality, there are in fact MANY lists. Actually, I would probably rank "The List" as more of a "frienemy", rather than a true friend. Kinda like my never ending, bottomless pit laundry basket. You see, for tweens/teens (of which I now have 3, thank you very much), this term means an enemy disguised as a friend...or a friend who might sometimes treat you more like an enemy....you know who I'm talking about. You're probably thinking of that person in your mind right now. It's ok, we've all had to deal with at at least one, at some point in time. I can think of a few through out my middle and high school years. Luckily, I'm passed all that. (well, for myself anyway, I'm sure I'll get to live through all that again with my kids, just like the whole science fair project thing;).
Anyhow....I can probably rank the list pretty high up there for both friend and enemy. It is a friend in that it reminds me of what I have to do. It keeps things in order. It keeps me on task. It lets me know what still needs to get done. It also tells me of what I might have planned for the week. What the kids have to do. BUT, and here's the catch....it also reminds me of what I still have to do. Get it? And it's also, like that laundry basket, never ending. The list never seems to get shorter? No really, I'm being honest here. I finish one thing on the list and add 2 more. I complete one list to find 3 more hidden away, only to come out when least expected (needed). My days rarely go as planned anymore. With 7 kids, that comes as no surprise, I'm sure. And, I've come quite accustomed to it, too. So, you'd think I'd be better prepared or have some other, more fancy way of keeping up. But, no, not me. Not yet anyway.
I admit, there are lists every where. Phone lists, homework lists, errand lists, things to do at home lists, and the most infamous one of all..........the big one, the grocery list. Wow. That's the biggie. It too never seems to end. I could shop every day and still need stuff. I swear it is true. We go through enough milk in this house per week to drain 10 cows. I won't even talk about the chickens. God rest their soles. My pantry looks like Seinfeld's top counter with all the cereals in it; not the variety, just the amount. And I bet his were full. I can't keep up. I don't even try anymore.
And that's the trick. That's what I've figured out. I live in the Twilight Zone. I do. To keep my sanity, I live out there....somewhere. And it's good. It works. So, after giving up the list for a few months over the summer. I've come to realize, it is a healthy addiction after all. So, I caved and went back. My lists still take over the house on occasion, but, that's ok. They NEVER, EVER will get completed, but that's ok, too. They help to keep order and keep me on track; even if it's not in the right order or ever all done. Sometimes it's true--it's important to have your friends close, but your enemies even closer. So, here I am....looking at my list of things to do tomorrow, knowing full well that the plan has already (expectedly) unexpectedly changed, and I'm ok with it. And guess what?...unlike that old high school frienemy....I can crumble that list up and start all over again. And it feels good! ;)
Ever so determined, I am off to the black hole, er um, laundry room to try to complete #1 on the list.....if I make my way back out, I'll be sure to let you know if I've completed "The List".
So, you've read about my best friend, the timer. Now you're about to read about another good friend of mine, the Calendar. Not my personal calendar, but rather the good ol' family calendar that has been in the kitchen for a number of years now. It became very apparent that this was a necessity in our home shortly after #4 arrived. She was born during the school year and it was the first year that I had a child in school; real school, not pre-school. Add to that a 4th child (a newborn) in the house and well the calendar just had to become part of our family. All of a sudden there were deadlines, dates, events, and parties that had to be out there for us to see on a daily basis, in order to plan properly. And it had to be big enough to fit all of us on! It was planted on our pantry door in the kitchen of the old house. It was a sanity saver for sure. Still is.
However, we have since moved and our doors are a bit different here and well, somehow the old family calendar didn't fit. I had it up on the inside of the door, but well, that just wasn't in your face enough for
us me.Oh, I've tried other calendars, but none seemed to work as well as this one. Smaller ones, individual ones (as in one for each kid), one of those monthly ones that you can write every one's name in. My dear friend gifted me one of those before #6 and it was great, for a while. Don't get me wrong, a wonderful idea, but it eventually became quite obvious that writing every one's names in each month was a bit too time consuming for a busy mommy like me, so then we moved to initials. Then we had problems fitting everything on to the little space provided for each person...a dentist appointment, a friend or school event and a game all in one tiny space didn't cut it for me, for us...no one could read what was going on. We simply needed more space. So, after the year passed, up went the old family calendar, again. Nothing else seemed to work...even the computer or our phones. Nothing. We compliment it with the computer, our phones or my own planner, but we still need an "in your face", family calendar.
Sadly, we are getting rid of the old one...the one I got so many years ago now is officially retired! I found a nice, new one! Still big, spacious squares to write many events into but a bit more acceptable than the old laminated one that is starting to show some wear and tear. The kids were a bit surprised, but I think they will soon grow accustomed to the new calendar and its new location: right smack dab in the middle of the kitchen. Now, that's what I call: organization.
We're ready to be organized for the new year. I'm likin' how empty it is right now and the fact that there is only black ink on there. For now, anyway....you see, each kid gets his/her own color so that we can quickly (most of the time) identify who has what each day! This month is sure to get filled and very colorful fairly quickly!
How do you keep track of all things going on in your family?