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Finding Time at Christmas Time

16 Dec
And the award for most creative use of a Santa costume goes to...

And the award for most creative use of a Santa costume goes to…

I can’t believe my last post was over two months ago… yet, thinking back on the last two months and ALL that has transpired in our busy lives, it doesn’t come as a big surprise, really.

Time is my greatest adversary. We fight constantly. Every day. I never claimed to be an excellent manager of time. In fact, I can’t recall who said it, but I once heard someone say (and I readily agreed) that one can’t actually manage time. One can, however, manage oneself  Either way, at the end of the day, my to-be-done list still looms large in my brain and keeps me from getting a good start on that thing called sleep. Which, in the time BC (Before Children) was never an issue. Now, though, I often lay there ticking off the things I need to add to the next day’s ever-growing list because I failed to complete them today (or yesterday, or the day before, as the case may be).

Oh well.

I envy people who are singularly focused. You know the types? The people who can focus on one thing and one thing only, with such laser-like focus that the thing gets done beautifully, gracefully and with oodles of style. These people make it look easy. Why? Because they can focus on the one thing.Easy, right? They aren’t trying to do all sorts of things all at once. They don’t have a myriad of interests and find themselves overwhelmed by all of their extracurricular hobbies. I am not singularly focused. I can’t even imagine having one passion. Therefore, I must accept overwhelm as a way of life. Or try to combat it.

Combat it. Hmmmmmm.

Did I tell you that back in September, I started to weed out the things in my life that weren’t serving me? I was completely overwhelmed, under-motivated and just plain worn out. I stopped going to meetings that seemed like time-wasters. I started saying NO to some things (which is hard for me). It was actually quite liberating… at least for a moment.

Just when I took my first clarifying, deep breath of freedom, I took on a Girl Scout troop.

Yes. The story of my life. While trying simplify things, I throw it all into a magnificent tailspin.

I didn’t take on an existing troop. No, that would have been much easier. No, I drummed up a co-leader and spread the word. I went through all the training. Did all the paper work and background screening. I planned a weekly meeting place, a time, activities, an Investiture Ceremony – all with ZERO start-up cash. (Note to self: seek sponsors next time.) I now proudly boast having 18 amazing young ladies in grades K-2 who look adorable in their little uniforms and run up to me in the school halls, excited for the day’s adventure.

I joke that the Girl Scout recruiter told me it was easy to be a Girl Scout Leader while handing me a 3″ binder stuffed with all the Rules & Regs. Yep. It ain’t easy. It’s a time-consuming, red-tape laden, legally absurd set of hoops to jump through. But it is rewarding. Sound like a cliché? Of course, but it’s true. To see the girls’ eyes light up when they see me, to watch them enjoy an activity together, it really is wonderful. I had a mom tell me that her daughter just loves coming to Girl Scouts. She loves it so much so that she is even willing to live with her grandparents while mom moves an hour away for a job. Hearing that made me realize it was all worthwhile. I honestly believe I’m making a difference. My girl even told me she was happy that I was the Girl Scout Leader! Uh-huh. That’ll tug at the ole heart-strings. {I’ll write more on this some other day… Girl Scouting has come through 100 years and although so much of it has changed, the core values are still very much there and so what our girls need now more than ever. It’s truly another topic for another day…}

Aside from school and Girl Scouts, since October we have been on a road trip to “luxury” camp with my parents at the beach, been to a Civil War battle reenactment where we actually dressed the part and stayed in the camp (boy, the smell of a wood campfire sticks to EVERYTHING), we celebrated three birthdays, Thanksgiving, and our 13th Wedding Anniversary! Add to the mix all the school functions, minor illnesses and a fun trip to a dear friend’s farm & art studio and it’s no wonder I hadn’t spent much time in front of the computer tippy-tapping.

So, tonight I just wanted to say hello. To let you know I was still here. Still kicking. Still trying to do it all. Still not finding enough time in the day to complete The List.

To make matters worse (albeit far more festive):

Christmas is upon us. One week away, actually.

This next week is so jam-packed with holiday parties, cookie exchanges, caroling, gift-wrapping, trip-planning, excitement-building, cocoa-sipping, light-gawking… It’s gonna be crazy!

And fun.

I hope you and your family enjoy every minute of it. I know we will. And if time gets away from us… we’ll just add it to tomorrow’s list!

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1 Comment

Posted by on December 16, 2012 in Just Because

 

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One response to “Finding Time at Christmas Time

  1. Jan Small

    December 16, 2012 at 9:01 am

    Terrific post, dear time-challenged YOU! I hope you will allow two bitty tidbits of unsolicited advice from someone who suffers from the same too-many-wondrous-things-to-do-make-see-experience syndrome –

    1) Check out The Pomodoro Technique. It is a deceptively simple – and FUN – way to work through the to-do list…and, importantly, it is yet another thing for you to research and learn ;-) Kids love it too and I know several young mothers who swear it has revolutionized their lives for the better.

    2) Reframe this “problem” of having “too many” interests and see it for what it really is – the way humans are supposed to be and were imbued by their maker to be. Think of God…s/he’s interested in everything (literally EVERY THING, EVER.) and is the ultimate multi-tasker. Too many people have lost their wonder and curiosity. So, there are a few of us who have to pick up the slack and be over-interested, over-curious, over-committed. We do humanity a great service.

    xoxox to you

     

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