My Wife’s Org Plan

IMG_4190We all need to be better organized.  We lose track of our schedule, forget to pay bills, change the oil at 4,000 miles and fail to remember birthdays.

We’ve tried daily planners.

We’ve mastered the to-do’s.

We’ve used stickies.

We’ve filled white-boards.

All to no avail.

But the other day I walked in and found my wife practicing a new form of organization.  It’s a priority system based on color strips.  Those items written in the lighter shades of color require more attention.  Those in the darker shades, further down the sampler, can be done with less urgency.

Of course, when she showed me the stack of samples she’d “borrowed” from our local hardware store, I was shocked…and a little impressed.  I’m not sure how she convinced the sales person that we were debating between 748 different color schemes for our home but, there they are stacked in nice neat rows between the stir-sticks and the blue painter’s tape.

She has a rainbow of color samplers that run the gambit from Blackberry to Abby White.  In fact, she has an entire pile dedicated to the White spectrum.  There’s every variation of white you can imagine (and some you can’t):  White Dove, Cloud White, Chantilly Lace, White Diamond, Simply White, Linen White and Navajo White.  There’s Dune White and Ivory White and, not to be confused with White Dove, there is a Dove Wing White.  There’s Honkey White, White As A Ghost and my personal favorite, Snow White (from the Disney Collection).

And don’t get me started on the shades of green!  Everything from Forrest to Spring.

But there is method in her madness.  At least that’s what she tells me.

And she might be correct.  So far, we’ve repainted the house twice in the last week and yet, she’s had time to complete every one of her outstanding tasks and has been on time for every appointment.  And she’s only in the Yellow section of her paint strip stash.  Thanks, Banana Yellow!

I think she may have an award-winning program…As long as Benjamin Moore doesn’t catch on.

My Morning on the Patio

IMG_4016I’m sitting here on my patio, listening to the trickle of water from my fountain and feeling the cool morning breeze on my face.  This is where I want to be.  There’s nothing else I want to do.  I want to stay here all day.  I want to pretend that I have no responsibilities at all.

But that just isn’t how I function.  Instead, I’ve already made a to-do list of at least nine different actions that must take place today to prepare me for the rest of the week.  I’ve mentally shifted from restful Sunday morning to task-oriented Monday-through-Friday.  I have to make calls.  I have to prep equipment.  I must clean parts of the house.  I should wash clothes and clean my garage.

There is so much to do, so many tasks, so few hours in a day to get it all done…

But then, it will never all get done.  Will it?  Isn’t there ALWAYS something else on the list of Life’s To-Do’s?  Sure, I’ll do some things to make my next week a little easier.  But I don’t have to do it all in one day.  And after reviewing the list, I see that half of the items can be done another day.  One third of the remaining list will take little or no effort.

And in their place I scratch a new list:  Go to church, read a book, walk with my wife, play chess with my son, and meditate 15 minutes.  If I accomplish these items, I will have really done something great.  In fact, I would argue that this is a much better list and one I can easily live with on a beautiful Sunday morning.