Like all working women with college-age kids under her roof and a husband who embraces stress with a vengance, I often have my work cut out for me. I want to be one of those organized women with a lovely orderly home, a daily exercise routine, a weekly menu of healthy meals, a set bedtime that provides me eight hours sleep, bills paid on time, laundry all done, and every creative effort addressed. I want a peaceful home, a serene respite for the whole family from the demands of the world, an island of serenity in the middle of 21st century suburbia.
Do you think I have that? Just in case you are unsure the answer is... Uh, no.
Do you think I am being a bit unrealistic? Of course.
I think so too but then sometimes I grow concerned that I am one of those people who just isn't getting it right and that everyone else is doing better than me at creating a clean, non-chaotic, charming home. It is not that I want to morph into June Cleaver and wear pearls and a shirt-dress while I vacuum and dust - although that is impressive. I just want to feel like I have things together enough that when I walk in the house I sigh with relief for being home instead of sigh with frustration at how much there is to do and how I will never be able to get it all done.
The thing is that I have a nice home. It is not the most orderly home in the world but it is not a case for the health department either. There's a lot to like about it but I just want to make it better - more pulled together with the goal of being a more enjoyable and pleasant home for all. I don't think I am alone in this desire. And all those others things - enough sleep, healthy meals, daily exercise, enough time for my creative projects, and the rest of it - we all need that. Like everyone else, I'm working on it. I think I am making some progress too.
I have been getting the digest emails from flylady.com. I refuse to wear my shoes in the house as she suggests but I love her suggestions for taking on tasks in 15 minute intervals. It has been working for me.
I am using this 15 minute approach to attack problem spots in my home (there are plenty of them too) - piles of papers, tables tops, the front entryway, etc. and it has been helping. It's going to take a while for it to transform my whole household but there are a few places around my house that we are seeing free and clear of clutter for the first time in quite a while. It's a small victory but it is a victory nevertheless.
In the meantime, I open up my work laptop and see the list of things I need to fit in this weekend. I was sure I would have time to do all these things and maybe more. There are 12 items on this list - TWELVE. And you might well ask - Have you done them? And I would have to answer - Well, not exactly. You might be drawn to further inquire if you are the hopeful type - Any of them? And I would have to burst your positive perception of Suburban Island living by responding - Well, not exactly.
Guess what I'm doing tonight.