Thursday, September 2, 2010


My girlfriend Alice, many years ago, gave me some of the most valuable child-rearing advice I ever received, all in a single eight word sentence: "Begin as you mean to go on."

Many times I've stopped to think, Do I want to start down that path? If I say Yes now, will it lead to problems later? Rarely was it anything earth-shattering that was being considered--letting the girls do, or not do, something "Just this once!" that I didn't want to become a habit and could see how quickly they'd turn that "once" into, "But you let us yesterday!" It really saved a lot of arguing later.

But that really hasn't got anything to do with my entry, except that I looked at my list and realized it was a map for "beginning as I meant to go on".

Each morning, usually right after breakfast, I pull out my notebook and make out my daily list. As you can see, I divide the page into four quadrants, with the headings, "Errands", "Call/Email", "Do", and "Write".

Those quadrants are essential to this ADD woman, and keep me, mostly, from making grasshopper leaps from one thing to another, especially important in the Errands department--I do Not want to go out and come home, only to discover I've missed a place I meant to get to.

If I leave the house, the list goes with me. Otherwise, it sits at my place at the table and is regularly referred to, and Oh! the satisfaction of marking something off! Some days I do pretty well. Other days, I look at the list in the evening and just sigh: Where did the day go, and how could I have accomplished so little?!

It's okay, though. The things I don't get to one day generally get moved to the next day's list. Some things I forget to transfer, which is why keeping the lists in the notebook works so well for me; I frequently go back through and review the pages.

My preference for anything hand-written is graph paper, preferably 5-to-the-inch. I seem to need those little boundaries to keep my penmanship tidy. This notebook has graph paper on only one side of the page, but that's handy, too--the facing page is great for jotting down notes and ideas, which is another reason I review past days.

Anyway, this helps me keep my days somewhat on track. I hope there's a bit of something helpful here for you, too!

Signing off for now,



Cindy Adkins said...

Hi Ani,
Oh what great advice and a beautiful friend! I wanted to tell you that on the 8th I will post a new link party right on the top (in the 1st post) and you just link up anything you want...easy!

All you need to do is post something on your blog, come over to mine, sign up, and then pick which picture you want to display...pretty simple...yea!

Hope you're having a wonderful day, Hon!

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