Saturday, April 18, 2009

27x5 = 0

I know that wasting a dollar here and a quarter there adds up.

I know that just a little snippiness between the kids, a hint of back-talk, a small dose of tattling, adds up to a toxic atmosphere at home and a very unhappy mommy.

I know that a little spill of orange juice unwiped, a couple of pieces of mail left on the counter, a sock here and a Playmobile there, adds up to clutter that, in turn, gives people permission to drop just a little more clutter around the kitchen.

What I do not know, however, is that 5 minutes here and 5 minutes there actually takes time. I believe [yes, yes, I do believe it! stupid though it be...] that gobs and gobs of "just a minute here" and "only five minutes there" should add up to NO time. HOW can I go through the day and "do nothing" but be busy all day?

I think that sorting laundry doesn't take any time. I noticed today that it took me about 12 minutes to make mayonnaise; I normally consider mayo-making to be "no time." I think that putting away the clean, dry dishes doesn't take any time. Sorting through the daily mail is another "nothing." Gassing the car doesn't count as something that was accomplished either, but Gary insists that I have to allow 10 minutes for it when I'm planning trips. I give myself credit for "doing something" when I make the bread dough, but greasing the pans, shaping the loaves, and baking it are more of those jobs that take "no time."

I think that I spend so much time on so many big things (dinner, teaching algebra, mowing the yard) that I don't realize that jobs of a half-hour or less take time. And when you have 27 five-minute jobs a day, that adds up.

But my gut still says it takes "no time."

One of my friends mentioned that for a whole day once-upon-a-time, she wrote down EVERYthing she did: every diaper she changed, every goofy conversation with a kid, every phone call she answered, brushing her teeth, EVERYthing. It made her realize how much she did that she didn't give herself credit for. I'm wondering if maybe I should spend a few days recording my minutes on a piece of paper. They say you should record all money spent when you're trying to get a grip on your budget. Maybe it would help to do the same thing with budgeting my time. I could see where I'm being wasteful, and I could acknowledge that some of these jobs really do add up to a couple of hours a day.

I'm not sure I could remember to keep writing all day, though. It's a good idea that I think I ought to try....

1 comment:

  1. That is a good idea. Cause little things do add up to something...