Preserving Our Past For The Future


Anyone who has known me long or well, knows I am a list maker. I have been making lists since I was a child. Lists of chores to do, list of chores accomplished, list of supplies I needed for a craft, lists of birthday and Christmas gifts to purchase, places I wanted to go on vacation, places I had been. Yes, I am a list maker.

Even my lists have sub-lists. Weird, I know. But I carry a student planner with me. In it there is a general calendar for each month, and on several pages following each calendar there is a note section for each day. I place my “bigger events list” on the calendar there. Estate sales are listed, appointments, lunch with a friend (rare), birthdays and the like. In the note section are things about each “bigger event” I need to know or remember. Phone numbers corresponding with the event, times of the estate sale and a list of last minute things “to do” there are all listed in the appropriate day, and um…I even have the days divided with a vertical line as to the time of day each thing is to be accomplished or occur.

Then there is the daily yellow pad list. I have a legal pad, yellow and lined, on a clipboard that goes with me everywhere pretty much, in addition to the aforementioned lists. I have each page vertically sectioned off into three days, date at the top of each section and day of week listed (in case I forget what day it is), and underneath this section are some things that occur on the other lists, but mostly it is daily junk that needs to be done so the other lists can get marked off. “Wash clothes” appears on a certain day so I will have clean clothes to wear on the three solid days working at the estate that are listed in the planner. “Make groomer appointment” appears on a Friday, since they are usually pretty packed, because the following Wednesday I want to drop him off around the corner from my standing breakfast-with-a-friend location and well, it will be convenient that way and I won’t have to make a special trip with the furry friend when I am going to be near there anyway.

You get the picture. And before I go on much further, yes, I have a smartphone and could put all my lists on that one calendar in one place, but it kinda freaks me out, so let’s just not go there, shall we?

I was driving around this morning, with the most current list running through my brain. Today is my “day off”, well on paper it is supposed to be, but of course, according to the list, there is much to accomplish today, so it becomes a faux day off.

I am three weeks in on my semi-retirement, and I am like all other retirees and working moms going back home. I am wondering how I had time to work at all before cutting the schedule.

So today, I am thinking more about why my time is not functioning in my favor. Is it because I am not organized? No, probably too organized. Is it because I am lazy? Sheesh, no. It is because I am using a lot of time making lists, for one….but I am leaving a very important factor out of the list. That factor is me.

I have caught myself steering off to do something at home or in a work-related way because it appears to be “urgent” instead of doing the truly important things. Some of those are reading for enjoyment, and some might be creating a new piece to sell in the booth and studying up on some cool techniques that I don’t seem to find time for because I am fighting “the list” of urgent stuff.

I am scared, but I am about to trim down a list…like to nothing, none, non-existent. Ditching a friend couldn’t be worse. But the list has been ditching me.

No more sacrificing the important on the altar of the urgent. That just got moved to the top of the list.


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