Saturday, May 22, 2010

When is busy bad if you're being/doing good?

I've been thinking a lot about this lately.

I have been looking for ways to cut down on my obligations and I've decided that I'm doomed. The doomed feeling came today when someone approached me (in the middle of the Bountiful Baskets delivery which I run) about being the precinct leader for our area of town. I laughed at her! I really had no right to laugh at her but I did it anyway. I've also recently been approached about being on the Planning and Zoning Commission for our town. And on the board of directors for our local library.

I have come to the conclusion that when you are semi-capable and don't pass the buck people remember that. And then when they see something that needs doing they call you.

As I've tried to come up with ways to cut down a bit I keep having this sneaking feeling that no matter what I do there will always be some worthy cause that presents itself in front of me. And it's nearly impossible to say no when I see that it REALLY needs doing.

But I have come up with one thing that will make a difference. That thing is to be super organized in my shopping trips to the grocery stores. Lately I've been spending more time than necessary doing this so this past week I challenged myself. My goal is to be in and out of a store in 15 minutes. I live in a very friendly place where you see lots of people you know at the store. That equals lots of time exercising the gift of the gab and not being home with my children. So to get around this I have decided to apply the "early bird gets the worm" theory. If I hit the stores early and only get what's on the list I can usually be in and out in the 15 minute time window.

Another thing I can do to slow my life down is to actually do something while I spend time with my husband and children in the evening. I know that sounds like it makes no sense. I like to crochet, knit, sew and embroider and rarely take the time to do those things. I have lots of supplies to work with just waiting for me to enjoy them but I seem to convince myself that I don't have time. Well, I decided to apply an idea I read about in a wonderful home management book titled, "Managers of Their Homes" by Teri Maxwell. She suggests that you actually schedule time for your productive hobbies. I've looked at my life at every possible angle and I've learned that there isn't really a time slot that I can reliably schedule this in during the day but I do have time at night that my hands are free. I'm not saying that I'm going to have the "go-go-go!" attitude regarding my hobbies but I've purposely put a project or two next to where I sit so that I actually remember to do something I really enjoy. These projects are very relaxing to me and productive at the same time. And they are a very frugal form of entertainment! Win-Win!

So, I've come to the conclusion that busy is not bad if you're being/doing good.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

"Change the World" with your spare change

I just found something that I couldn't keep quiet about.

I have been donating some of my free stuff from my Walgreens trips to the local food bank here and there.

Now I am really going to strive to do this weekly.

I found a wonderful little idea at a site called

Did you know that the average home generates about $5.00 in change each week? The ladies over at Saving Addiction have a plan for you to use that spare change to help others. You set aside that money specifically to purchase items to donate. They encourage you to make this a weekly practice and see the difference that you can make with your own eyes. They donate monthly but I like to do it weekly.

I have been very encouraged by what I've been able to give lately. It's a wonderful thing and it's a very tangible way to give a little more.