Monday, April 8, 2013

Time Management - Back to Basics

One day...and sometimes one hour, one minute, or one second. 
Our time is a precious and finite commodity.
Where does the time go?!?!?!  If I've asked it once, I've asked it a million times. (And so has most everyone I know.)  Predictably, and often in spite of my best intentions, the answer remains the same.  There have always been twenty-four hours in a day, and no amount of wishing, hoping, or praying is going to change that. 

Beyond the challenge of this fact, I also tend to over commit.  I'm not a pushover, and I prefer the label of "overenthusiastic".  I really want to do it all... and I want to do it all well... and I want to do it all right now. Alas, it's once again time to admit that this just isn't possible.  (This seems to be a recurring theme in my life!)

I know that the key to taming my time management monster doesn't hinge on finding new ways to jam more productivity into the precious time that I have.  Instead, it lies in setting more realistic expectations of myself, and it lies in the soul-searching task of determining which activities are most important to my personal and professional well being.

This brings me to the exercise that my local friends and I will be undertaking this month.  Since our days tend to pass in a blur of activity, we realized that we first need to make an honest assessment of the manner in which we currently spend our time.  To accomplish this, we've decided to keep "time cards" for the next month.  They don't have to be fancy; we won't be punching time clocks; and we certainly don't want this process to take too much of our time.  :-) 

Instead, we'll simply record the manner in which we spend our time each day.  For me, categories may include Mom, Alan, Sleep, Housekeeping, Bookkeeping, Studio, etc...  I'll probably develop a few subcategories as the month progresses too.  For example, I may include a subcategory for Social Media within my Computer Category.

In a month we'll discuss our results, and we'll work through a few other exercises to help us with this process.

Would you care to join us?

Or will you please share any other innovative ideas that you have for conquering the dilemma of having too much to do in too little time?

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Thank you...

I know that it's hard to believe; but life here has been crazier than usual lately.   Fortunately I've been blessed with many Moments of Grace amidst the chaos.  Recently two of my artsy friends surprised me beyond words, and I wanted to share the gift of their talents with you today.

Purse and Earrings by Jessica of Lucky Cup Studio.
Jessica is extremely talented, and she's one of the owners of Swank Coffee and Handmade Market in Southern Pines.  She knows that I LOVE my extra-long-over-the-shoulder-purses, and she was kind enough to make this one with me in mind.  I've been wearing it with the lovely earrings that she also made.  You'll find more of her work at Swank or in her online store.

The cutest clothes for the wee ones, also
by Jessica, and available at Swank.
Then, as if this wasn't enough, on a routine drive-by of our mailbox one day, Alan and I were astonished to find it filled to capacity with this super sized box of Barilla Spaghetti.  I come from a Big Italian Family, so the quantity didn't necessarily surprise me; the fact that it was in my mailbox did.  I swear that no one in my family has ever mail ordered their pasta!  :-) 

A surprise in our mailbox.
Imagine my surprise and delight when this lowly spaghetti box revealed the most amazing piece of pottery ever.  This sweet bird bell was created by the talented Suzanne Rehbock of Flying Pig Pottery.  Many years ago, Suzanne and I struck up a fast friendship at a show in Swansboro, NC.  Since then I've been a rabid fan of her work, and it just keeps getting better.  If you'd like to see more for yourself, please visit The Flying Pig Website, Online Store, and Facebook Page.
North Carolina Pottery Bird Bell
by Flying Pig Pottery
Thank you again, Suzanne and Jessica!  Your kindness is appreciated more than I can say.