Friday, January 30, 2009

If it worked for Ma...

could it work for me?

Dear Ma has a task for every day: wash on Monday, iron on Tuesday, mend on Wednesday, churn on Thursday, clean on Friday, bake on Saturday, rest on Sunday (rest? really? we must be different religions). I know her schedule from reading the "Little House" books. Lately I've been wondering if this is how I should organize my week. I pretty much wake up every day with things like this floating through my mind..."Well, maybe today I should clean out the pantry, or maybe I could make an order for the store, or what if I go food shopping, or I wonder if I should start looking for fabric.....should I call someone and go to the mall? hmmm......decisions...and not surprisingly...I usually do NONE of them. That's right, none. It's not that I'm lazy all day just very directionless and unmotivated and I'm not sure why.

Years ago, when I was younger, more organized and found domestic engineering rather...exciting (is that really the right word?), I kept a planner and had to-do lists. Every day I'd follow that list knowing the gurgling joy I would feel at the end of the day when I saw my check marks next to my tasks...laundry folded (check!), phone calls made (check!), junk drawer organized (check!), toothbrushes boiled (check!)...etc. I think what's happened to me as of late, is I no longer find so much excitement in the mundane. Yes, I do believe it's plum worn off. So...what to do when you find yourself in a slump and feeling uninspired? When the old system no longer motivates you. Here is where I turn to Ma. I believe she can help.

I am going to restructure my days and my week. By noon every day I will have gone to the gym, cleaned up the kitchen and general clutter, and gotten myself dressed and ready. THEN...depending on the day....I will have three hours to do things in that day's category. If it's a butter day....then you will find me in my kitchen churning. If it's a mending day...you will see me stooped over Nick's socks. No, seriously, for me it will be more like house projects, business goals, kid stuff, church etc I'm still narrowing it down but, I'm hoping it works. I have tons I want/need to accomplish but have felt a little powerless to do so. Does this make sense to anyone but me and Ma? Oh, and by the way, if Ma (and Pa for that matter) is a stranger to you, go straightaway to Amazon and get it ordered. Your life will never be complete without Little House......

11 comments:

Kim said...

You, me and ma will do it all by ourselves starting today! Keep me posted on your progress! I am tired of looking at everything and feeling depressed that I didn't get much done, not even Lili's hair! Check out our new family blog on that one and you will see that a noon goal just won't work for me! www.jigginwiththejohnsons.blogspot.com
We are going to some salon in the North side today...I am just not capable anymore!

Rebecca said...

You know, I also find myself relying heavily on my lists. My days are impossible when I stray. Especially the cooking. They do help get the most done in the shortest amount of time, helpful when the novelty of this job wears off, or 20 degree weather begs me to stay in my jammies.

The Bobos said...

Hey Jen! I'm totally going through the same thing right now. My 'nesting' phase has hit and I feel like I need to be more organized. My mother in law got me into FlyLady.com, a site dedicated to being more time-efficient and organized when it comes to cleaning. It totally helps, I highly recommend it!!

VEGAS VIC said...

I agree with the Bobos. Gotta have something that motivates you. Maybe Ma could do it for you, but Flylady, Daryl Hoole, or Sidetracked Executives, or what ever it was called, that really got me flying. I just had to have the motivation to pick up the book. It is a good goal you have going on, good luck

Ann Marie said...

I LOVE LITTLE HOUSE!!! LOVE IT!
When I think of my great grandmothers in days long ago, and all that they did each day, I feel like a lazy pile. January - April is when I deep clean and organize, because I can't be outside in the yard, or spending money every day.. So I bury myself into deep tasks.

I have had many lazy days also.. Days where I know Chad will be home in an hour so I'd better get as much done as I can so I look like I have done something?? Ya. It's happened..

The way you feel about Organizing, I feel about Exercising.. There is always something that we struggle to get motivated by huh???

Jenny said...

Very inspiring since I was just thinking about my lack of time management.

jill said...

I too have looked at the Fly Lady web-site. I think my problem is I need to get a hobby/project. Did Ma have any real great hobbies that really helped take her mind off the failing crop, or Carrie falling down the mine shaft, or that nasty Mrs. Olsen?

JENNIFRO said...

Well...she did put up pickles and bake pies and never left the county fair without a passel of ribbons to her credit...

Either one of those interest you Jiggy?

Jayne Layne said...

Now that I am a Ma I can tell you, I have just done a whole lot of sitting. I really need to follow in the footsteps of Ma, but I REALLY don't see that happening anytime soon. Maybe after I am through with being paranoid over everything.

Suzanne said...

I am a lady of check lists and getting things done! Although, lately, I found myself not doing much because I was overwhelmed. Now I am not doing much because I don't feel well. Life is such. That's great that you are motivated and have found a starting point. You go get em Tiger! -Suzanne

Tiff said...

I tried this for a while. Keeping house at night after work is very exhausting, but having one chore per night did help. It has degenerated since I first tried it, but I was a mess and trying something like this really did help a bit. The biggest problem was that sometimes after work on Monday I had a headache and really, really didn't want to go to the grocery store...etc. However, the laundry has gotten much better because I usually managed to make it through laundry night... Anyway, my only suggestion is to determine ahead of time what you will do if you mess up a day. I say skip it and start again with the day you are on. Then if you can, go back to the chore for the missed day. Always trying to play "catch up" after you blow one day will mess the system up.