Monday, July 28, 2008

Plan Away

I love to plan. My planner is a personal friend that has down all sorts of information - things to look forward to, things to not forget, birthdays of people I love, appointments I should make, appointments I should keep....and so forth. Outside of my planner I like to make lists. It helps me think about what I am going to do for the next day - you know, get focused and prepared. So my list of things to do today was as follows:

Mon. July 28th

6:00 am run 5 miles

start laundry
clean my room
clean my bathroom
make car appt. - oil change, safety and emissions inspection
make Jason dermatologist
make periodontic appt. for me
clean kids bathroom
clean and dust front room
clean and dust tv room
clean wood floor
vacuum stairs
eat breakfast / print VT message
vacuum basement
basement bathroom

10:30 am VT Jenn

balance checkbook / pay bills

go to the bank
buy school supplies
go to UVU - pay tuition, buy physiology book and parking pass

That is a copy of the real list I wrote last night. Not asking too much, right? Notice that all the stuff before 10:30 am was to be finished BY 10:30 am. OK, so I am not very realistic. I do have helpers in the form of children - they were each assigned to clean their rooms, including dusting and vacuuming, along with two of the chores listed above. They do a fairly good job when reminded!

Funny enough, it isn't all done yet, and it is nearly 3:00 pm. What happened? Well, here's the thing. I didn't include time for important things such as gazing off into space after I get back from running, because I am still tired and need to stretch. I didn't include sorting laundry, which is now in my bedroom, making it impossible to completely finish the bedroom chore. I didn't write down time to get on the computer, check emails, write emails, and check out other peoples blog. I didn't even have in the plan to write a new blog of my own. Therein lies the problem. There are many things that get done that just can't be planned for! There is the obvious time needed to get dressed and ready for the day that gets added on to the "shower" spot, and the "plan" didn't allow for helping the children get their breakfast, coming girls hair, answering the phone and chatting with my husband for a few minutes, and unloading and loading the dishwasher so I can clean up after breakfast - not to mention that each job includes other parts of the job, like wiping down walls, cleaning blinds, and working on general order before getting into the full cleaning mode. Every job is really like three jobs put into one. :-)

I guess I love lists for another reason - I get to cross things off when I finish them, and, even more fun, I can write extra stuff I did on the list and cross it off immediately. It feels very productive.

One great thing about a list is that it can leak over to tomorrow! And it usually does. Here is to making a new list!! :-)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

About running

Here is my running analogy for the day. The ease and joy of running down a hill does not equal the work and torture of running up a hill. A downhill into an uphill does not give you any momentum to make the beginning of the up any easier. And, finally, going down a hill often feels like running on level ground, while running even slightly up hill NEVER feels like running on level ground. Sometimes life is like that too. When things are going well and nicely, time passes easily. Somehow that never seems to "store up" and swing me through the challenging times. I haven't had babies that keep me up at night for a long time. I don't expect to wake up and take care of anyone. I quite enjoy my sleep. And then it happened. My oldest child became a teenager that likes to stay out late. Because it is summer, he and his group of friends have spent many nights playing night games or watching old movies (sometimes at our home too!) When he does come home, he likes to putter around, take a late shower, get himself a snack, go out to the garage for a water bottle, and call friends - other teenagers that are also not asleep at nearly 1:00 am. So once again I find myself staying up late, waking up everytime the bathroom door opens and closes, and waking up to check on a child in the middle of the night. I find that the many nights I have had without being disturbed or worried because of my children and their sleep have not made the current late nights any easier, or made me less tired the days after the late nights. Up hill is always hard! I think it gets harder as I get older :-)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Birthdays at our house

Children's birthdays
Isn't it amazing how much goes into celebrating birthdays? My middle child just turned 10 yesterday. We try to make the day special by letting the birthday child choose the meals, the activities, and the plan of the day. She chose egg, sausage and cheese bagles for breakfast. Then we went to a movie (we bought a summer movie package at the beginning of the summer), and saw "Horton Hears a Who". We ran to the store to buy milk - we were 100% out - took the boys home, and went to get pedicures. We had hear of a place that only charges $10 because it is a school, so we went, only to find out that they are remodeling this week (of course) and not doing nails. We ended up at Wal-Mart, paid a lot more, and only Tiffy got the whole foot treatment. The toenails look cute though :-) Then we dashed home to work on the chosen dinner, which was stuffed cheese shells. It wasn't finished by the time Nate got home, so we tossed it the fridge so we could get to Jump on It for our activity. That was Tiff's choice of outings for her day. It is a building filled with connected trampolines. On Monday nights there is a family deal of $20 per immediate family, which is way better than the normal rate. Der gets migraines, and got a fierce one right before we walked out the door. He is only 6. He was crying, pressing his head into the couch, and looked pastey. We gave him some medicine and water, and brought him along. He threw up about 5 minutes before we got to the building. Usually that makes him feel better, and, sure enough, within 20 minutes he was jumping around the trampolines with everyone else. We all got sweaty and tired, and Nate caught his foot on something and ripped a quarter size chunk of skin off the ball of his foot - and he was wearing socks! In spite of the drama, it was great fun! We came home and ate dinner, talked the "bests" of the day over, and Tiffy felt that her birthday was a great success! I forgot my camera (typical for me), but my mom came and took pictures. I will add some as soon as she sends them along.With 5 children we have adopted the rule of party years. Friend parties happen on ages 5, 8, and 12. The other years are family activities. It works well except the years that the birthdays align - my oldest turned 12, my third turned 8, and my fourth turned 5 one year. So much for spreading out the parties!! :-)