I have a fiery drive to Get Things Done. You already know how much I love to-do lists. Not only do I make seasonal to-do lists and share them here, I often have daily and weekly to-do lists that I'm working on. In fact, I started using a bullet journal about a year go, just to keep my lists organized.
|(This is my bullet journal. I'm still using it. It's still helping.)|
The truth is, I am a very busy person. I thrive on being busy. I homeschool my 3 kids, I help run our homeschool co-op, I blog, I write regularly for both Femnista and the Prairie Times, I write novels and self-publish them... and I read about a book a week. Oh, and I started a book club at church, I'm involved with Sunday school and VBS and the church choir. I'm an active bookstagrammer. I have a flower garden. I usually have at least one crocheting or sewing project going. And I watch at least one movie a week. Writing all that up right now made me kinda tired, to be honest! Wow. I'm very busy.
The point of this post is not to praise myself for how much I accomplish, or how good I am at balancing things. The point of this post is to answer that question that I get a lot, when people find out how busy I am.
HOW DO YOU DO ALL THAT?!?!?
The answer -- the very truthful, not necessarily flattering answer -- is that I do all that by NOT doing a ton of other things. So, inspired by that article, here is my I Don't List.
+ I don't dust more than three or four times a year.
+ I don't sweep the kitchen more than once every week or two.
+ I don't mop. (My husband does.)
+ I don't sweep the dining room. (My daughter does.)
+ I don't do most of the laundry. (My son does.)
+ I don't wake up at night to feed any babies. (Anymore.)
+ I don't change diapers. (Anymore.)
+ I don't breastfeed. (Anymore. Wow, babies take a lot of time and work, y'all.)
+ I don't get TV on my TV. I watch DVDs, VHS tapes (so old-fashioned), and stuff on Amazon Prime Instant Video. (If I'm watching a TV show or movie, it is very intentional. It is not a way to kill time or have background noise or whatever. Watching a show or a movie is an active pursuit for me, an activity, not a pastime.)
+ I don't clean my bathrooms every week. (I have 4 bathrooms. I rotate them, so they each get cleaned about every-other-week, but more often if they get gross, obviously.)
+ I don't scrub my shower regularly. (I have a friend who scrubs her shower every week. No thanks. I don't have time.)
+ I don't make every meal from scratch. (I love to cook. I do cook supper from scratch several times a week, but lunches are usually pb&j or something from a box or can, plus fresh fruit or veggies.)
+ I don't bake my own bread. (Very often. Sometimes, but it's a treat.)
+ I don't grind my own grain. (Stop rolling your eyes! I know people who do.)
+ I don't make my own yogurt. Or cheese. (Those sound nifty, though!)
+ I don't sew my kids' clothes. (My grandma sewed all my mom's clothes until my mom was a teen. Dude. Wow.)(I do sew the occasional thing, but it's a fun activity for me that turns into something useful, like a blanket or a dress or a skirt. Or doll clothes...)
+ I don't have my kids in umpteen sports and activities and programs. (They do swimming lessons in the fall/winter/spring once a week, all at the same time. We go to our homeschool co-op twice a month. We go to church and Sunday school every Sunday. That's it.)
+ I don't always fold laundry as soon as it's dry. (Sometimes my kids have to dig through baskets to find clothes. But hey, they're clean.)
+ I don't fold any of the clean towels or washcloths. (My other daughter does.)
+ I don't keep track of fashion trends. At all. (Most days I wear jeans and a t-shirt. On Sundays, I wear nice shirts and skirts or dresses, but they're what are comfy and please me, not what are cool or trendy. I have no idea what's fashionable.)
+ I don't wear makeup.
+ I don't read all my favorite blogs every day anymore. (This makes me SO SAD. I want to find a way to work reading blogs back into my daily schedule. Trying to make that happen. Cuz I miss reading my friends' blogs, but right now, it just doesn't happen.)
+ I don't read my Facebook feed much. (I use FB mostly as a bulletin board and to instant-message friends. I might scroll a little while waiting for someone to reply, but that's very occasional.)
+ I don't do Twitter. (I have an account, but I never use it.)
+ I don't have an Etsy shop. (Anymore. I did for years, but life happened.)
+ I'm not pursuing a higher education degree. (My BA is just fine, thanks.)
+ I don't shower every day. (Twice a week is fine, unless I've been working outside or whatever.)
+ I don't exercise every day. I don't even exercise three times a week. I try to, but reality is once or twice most weeks. (But this is much better than back when I never exercised at all!)
+ I don't have a job outside the home.
Now. Are any of the things I don't do bad things? No! They're all good. And some of them, I should do more, or would like to do more. I need to get back to exercising 3 times a week. (I did for several months earlier this year, but life happened.) I want to get back to reading blogs regularly. (I did for years and years, but life happened.)
But that's how I do what I do. By not doing many, many other things. Because nobody can do everything, right? Right.
So please, if you ever look at my "let's see what I checked off my to-do list for this season" posts and say, "Ugh, why can't I do all those things too? What am I doing wrong?" I want you to know that the answer is nothing. You are doing nothing wrong. You are probably just doing things that I don't do, and things that I do are on YOUR "I Don't" list. And that's totally fine. As Major Tony Nelson said in one of my favorite episodes of I Dream of Jeannie, "I'm me and you're you, and that's what makes the world go 'round." He was a pretty smart guy, being an astronaut and all, so I think it's good to remember those wise words of his.
Or don't, if remembering random, obscure lines from movies and shows and books is on your I Don't list ;-)