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Archive for August, 2012|Monthly archive page

So I’m a Multi-tasker….No Really!

In Food, habits, Life Essays, quirks, rituals on August 24, 2012 at 6:42 am

I am a multi-tasker. It’s true. I don’t feel like I’m getting enough done unless I’m doing several things at once. 

Sometimes this is a really good thing, and helps me to accomplish a lot…other times it means I get absolutely nothing accomplished…or at least it becomes a form of procrastination, keeping me from accomplishing what I most need to get done.

From the minute I get up in the morning, I multi-task. I start by getting a load of laundry into the washer. While it’s washing, I make the bed, put some toothpaste on my toothbrush, hop in the shower, wash up, (I know this is WAY too much information, but bear with me…or bare with me, I am in the shower). I wash my hair, then condition, now my conditioner needs to stay in for two-three minutes…and I’m not going to twiddle my thumbs and count them off, so I pick up the toothbrush to brush my teeth…it’s timed for brushing your teeth for two minutes, but while I’m brushing my teeth, and conditioning my hair, I still feel like I could get more done, so I switch my toothbrush to my left hand, grab my razor, and shave my legs, while I brush my teeth, condition my hair and do laundry…ah, now I’ve got things in control. Look how much I can accomplish in two-three minutes!! Of course, I frequently knick my legs while I’m shaving this way because I’m not all that coordinated…but at least I’m using my time wisely, no really I am.

So, I get out of the shower, alright, I rinse my mouth out, rinse my hair, hose down my legs and get out of the shower. Wrap my hair in a turban, and dry off. Quickly, because I’m pretty sure my load of laundry is done, and this means I’m no longer multi-tasking, so of course, I’m wasting time.

I throw my laundry in the dryer, fill the washer with a new load, turn them on…yay! I’m washing and drying, now I can go fill the crockpot or bread machine, or some big pot on the stove with food for dinner so that I’m doing a few things at once. Maybe make cookie dough, so that I can bake cookies, while starting dinner, unload last night’s dinner dishes from the dishwasher…I’m really going now, and reload…phew, now I’m cooking, doing dishes and laundry all at once! But wait, the washer just finished, so I better go grab another load. So I can move the laundry from the dryer to a laundry basket, from the washer to the dryer, and reload the washer. Now I’m folding laundry, keeping an eye on whatever is cooking, burning a batch of cookies, waiting for the dishwasher to beep…and what was it I was planning on finishing today? Oh yeah, editing chapter twelve of my book.

So, the laundry is folded, dishwasher, washer and dryer are running, cookies are burnt and dinner is simmering. I grab my manuscript and red pen… but then the dryer buzzes AND the dishwasher dings…oh, and I can smell that I’m scorching whatever is in the pot simmering for dinner.

So, I go stir the pot, unload the washer and dryer first, I don’t want those clothes to wrinkle. Fold the laundry, put some toilet bowl cleaner in the toilets so that I’m still multi-tasking while I empty the dishwasher, realize there’s black dog hair everywhere, so I  better vacuum, but I don’t want to vacuum until I dust because, well everyone knows you dust before you vacuum…. but, then the dryer buzzes and the last load is done.

So, I rush to stir the pot again, grab the last load of laundry, fold them while I get my bank balance over the phone, now I need to go to the bathroom.

But, I’ve put toilet bowl cleaner in the toilet, and everyone knows you need to clean the rest of the bathroom first and the toilet last, so I wipe the counters, and the shower, quickly sweep, clean the toilets, finally go to the bathroom….and oh yeah, I still need to vacuum….but I haven’t dusted.

So I stir the simmering pot, start to dust, the phone rings, I dust while I’m on the phone…THIS IS MULTI-TASKING!! I hang up, realize it’s almost time for Hunky Hubby to get home…I’ll just vacuum the downstairs real quick. Finish putting dinner together, just enough time to put on some make-up, put my manuscript away. Take a quick look at my to do list….. there were only two things on it:

  1. Exercise today
  2. Edit chapter 12

 

Somehow I didn’t get anything done on my list! Maybe I should get up 15 minutes earlier tomorrow.

 

What about you? Are you a multi-tasker. Or do you check things off of your list one at a time? How do you get things done? Tell me, I’d love to know…really, I could use some help!

 

Just a note: Don’t forget to enter the contest from the August 23rd post: https://taristhread.wordpress.com/2012/08/23/where-are-you-from/

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Where are you from?

In contest, Life Essays, poetry, writing on August 23, 2012 at 9:04 am

So, I’m stealing this from author, Jenny Hansen at her blog  Cowbell-You Need More of It, who got the idea and template from author, Sharla Lovelace’s Blog, although it was shared by debut author, Laura Drake on The Morning Juice, an OCC RWA writing loop…and whether you love to write, or just love to read you should come to a meeting, it’s an amazing group….and don’t forget to go “like” Laura Drake’s new facebook author page!!! (You all do know I’m the Queen of Run On Sentences right?) And by the way, there is a much longer chain of sharing. If you google ‘Where I am From’, you will find lots of links to this popular writing exercise, which came from a poem by George Ella Lyon. You’ll find a copy of the template at Sharla’s blog. It’s so easy to use…it’s like a poetry Mad Libs.

I love this exercise, and I challenge all of my readers, friends and family…..writer’s and non writer’s to do it…and please share it with me if you do. If you’re willing, I’ll post those that people share right here. In fact, let’s make it a contest! Everyone who does the exercise and posts it or sends it to me so I can post it will be entered in a random drawing for an autographed book from one of my favorite authors! And everyone who leaves a comment on this post….or any of the posts where I share your “Where are you from?” entries  between August 23, 2012 and September 15, 2012  will be entered in a random drawing for another autographed book. I’ll announce the winners on Monday, September 17th, 2012 and the winner must respond and send me their mailing address by September 30th,  2012 or a new winner will be selected. Winner must live in the United States.

Go to Jenny and Sharla’s pages for some inspiration.

So here’s my poem:

Where I’m From

I am from stacks of books from Kool Aid and grilled cheese sandwiches, French fries and ice cold Cokes at the Newberry’s lunch counter.

I am from the harvest gold, 1970’s tri-level house, with a gas lamp by the sidewalk outside my bedroom window that I used to sneak and read books from, no fences, no sidewalks and a gravel road.

I am from the damp sand and cool ocean breezes along the pacific, that make you forget the traffic and chaos, the golden Ohio cornfields, that symbolize what is real and wholesome .

I am from  sweet sugar cookie baking with old tin cookie cutters and Rose, from Bud (yes that’s Rosebud) and two younger brothers that I played with, fought with read to and learned from and from a family that can trace it’s roots in America to the Revolutionary War.

 

I am from the deep stubbornness of never giving up and the gentleness of holding a tiny baby in your arms and seeing hope for the future.

From ‘”Wait ‘til your father gets home” and “Don’t make me spank you”….and he only did once, and it really did “hurt him more than it hurt me” although I cried buckets of tears.

I am from small town Sunday school, Summer Bible Camp at various protestant churches in a small Amish/Mennonite town, Baptist Church with my high school boyfriend, my best Sunday dress and traditional hymns….”Jesus loves me”.

I’m from Los Angeles, tacos and sushi, yes I am a native, and from Uniontown, Ohio, meatloaf and mashed potatoes, Christmas tamale’s that we make with our aunts, uncles and cousins because it wouldn’t be Christmas without them, and really it’s just another excuse to get together, because we don’t do it often enough.

From the feisty, sign painter for Food Giant,  writer for the Akron Beacon Journal, mother of 13, Milly, who made all my dresses for kindergarten on her treadle sewing machine, stood just  5’2” with blonde hair, blue eyes, and you didn’t want to mess with her, but you did want to stand on a chair and wait for donut holes while she fried fresh donuts (do you see any resemblance there?) and Maclovia, who changed her name to Maxine, sang in nightclubs until she met a magician and had 6 children, taught me to embroider by hand, and finally went to Israel as she always dreamed. And from my Tia Tonia, who was like a third grandmother to me and refused to teach me to make her delicious homemade tortillas because if I knew how “someday, some man would make me make them every day” and she loved me too much for that. But, every time I eat a fresh tortilla I wish she’d taught me to make them.

I am from albums, walls and mantel tops (even computer files) of photographs, some fading, faster than I can scan them into my computer, from shoe boxes with one grandmother’s old eyeglasses and a copper bracelet, and the antique butter dishes from another, the tea set my mother pieced together as a young bride, the tea set my mother gave me as a child…the tea set she gave me just five years ago, that I always say I’m going to use, but never do because I’m afraid to break them…even though there are some chips here and there from life. But, now I’m going to plan a tea party with my favorite women because what good are tea sets you don’t use?

Now, I hope you’ll tell me……where are you from?

Twenty Four Years Is Not Enough

In Uncategorized on August 20, 2012 at 9:46 am

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August is a month of special anniversaries for Paul and I. Last week we celebrated the 25th Anniversary of the day we met at Shoreline Village. Wednesday will be the 25th Anniversary of our first date, and today is our 24th Wedding Anniversary. Yep, we’ve been married twenty four years, and together twenty five.

I’m not ready to give out advice on how to stay married. My parents split up just short of their twenty fifth anniversary, and his divorced after thirty three years of marriage, so there are some milestones I still want to pass before I feel like “this will last”. Okay, in all likelihood, as madly in love as I am with my Hunky Hubby, I will never feel entirely secure.

There are some wonderful marriages that I look to for inspiration…not perfect marriages, but good marriages. Not marriages where people just stay together and endure a bad relationship, but marriages that seem to be happy and loving. My Aunt Betty and Uncle Roger were married more than fifty years before he died, my Aunt Judy and Uncle Ed have been married nearly fifty years, and they aren’t alone. I know of quite a few long lasting, happy marriages.

We have a number of friends married around the same time as us. Their marriages have made it through rough times, raising kids, sometimes health or financial trials, but they’ve loved each other enough to work through the challenges and keep their relationship a priority.

When Paul and I got married I was only 27 years old. I’d already been married, had a child and divorced by age 23. My parents had just gone through a divorce, his were in the middle of a divorce and I was terrified of what we were doing. Should we get married? Should we take a chance and try to build a life together? Could it really work? I didn’t want to be divorced again.

Over the years I’ve wanted to throw things at him, I’ve been mad enough to think about leaving, and I’ve thought about torture. And there’s a good chance he’s had similar thoughts. The truth is though, that I don’t want to imagine my life without him. No matter how imperfect, no matter how challenging, every day that I get to be Paul’s wife is another day I’m thankful for.

And one of the things that keep us working on our marriage is our parents’ divorces. We know what it can do to families not just the couple, because we’ve experienced it. We don’t want that to happen to the little family we’ve raised. So, when it’s all romance and roses, great, but when it’s tough, we do the hard work to keep it together.

Most days it’s easy. I still count the minutes until he gets home from work. He still calls me several times during the work day. His voice on the phone still makes me melt. We are practically inseparable all these years later. We flirt shamelessly with each other, and on occasion are asked if we’re newlyweds. We usually just smile and nod.

Tonight we’ll have dinner at the restaurant that’s currently on the marina where we met. Paul will make the hostess and wait staff listen to the story of how we met right there and were married right there. If we see any young couples nearby, he’ll tell them the story as well. He’ll find something to juggle just to impress me…and anyone watching. I’ll roll my eyes and pretend he’s embarrassing me, and we’ll watch the sunset thanking God for one more year together. We know how precious they are.

So, now that I’m all melancholy. I want to say thank you to my wonderful, crazy, hardworking, handsome husband who keeps me laughing, pumps my gas for me, changes all of the light bulbs, keeps our old car running against its will, and puts up with me year after year.

Happy Twenty Fourth Anniversary Honey!! Is it greedy to say it isn’t enough?

All my love,

Tari