Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The List Omits "Ate Too Many Jelly Beans and Reese's Snack-Size Peanut Butter Eggs."

I've been running around like a chicken with its head cut off lately--getting up at 5 a.m. and still not completing everything on my to-do list each day--and it's driving me just a little bit crazy. I'm a full-time at-home mom; I'm a housewife; my job is never-ending and because it's my full-time, primary work, it includes things like volunteering at school and buying May basket supplies and taking the children around to deliver them on May Day. Contracting with the house painters and planning all the birthdays. Arranging the CSA membership and registering for summer soccer. You know. Maybe you're a full-time at-home mom and housewife too.

But when you try to combine full-time at-home parenting with part-time paid work--even if it's freelance work-from-home like mine is--you quickly run into the reality that there are only 24 hours in a day. And if you're busy taking care of children and cooking meals and doing the grocery shopping and volunteering at the elementary school during the days, you're going to have to do your paid work at night. And on the weekends. When--oh, right!--you're also still a mom and housewife, still cooking, still grocery shopping, still running (back) to Target to get May Day supplies.

And did I mention I'm doing the 30 Day Shred like a totally insane person? Who has time to exercise every single day, I ask you? Oh, yeah--someone whose city pool opens in six weeks. (I was wrong about the date! It opens a week earlier than I'd thought! Frightening.)


I didn't get any freelance work done yesterday. And since my checking account is dwindling and I therefore feel anxious and stressed about not getting any freelance work done yesterday, I decided to make a list of what I actually DID do yesterday, thinking it would make me feel a little better and a little more productive. So here goes.

Woke, fed, dressed, and groomed children for school
Fed cat
Made beds
Dressed and groomed myself
Put away clean laundry
Spent at least an hour trying to figure out how to operate my new cell phone (gah! kill me)
Swept the floor
Brought younger daughter to preschool
Volunteered in older daughter's first-grade classroom
Tended to book publicity tasks
Sent out a book proposal query to (yet another) literary agent
Did 3 loads of laundry
Picked younger child up from preschool
Made lunch and fed daughter
Played Dora Memory board game with daughter
Fell asleep for an hour during daughter's naptime--OOPS! Probably should not include that....
Discussed summer soccer with friend to coordinate registration for our children
Took younger daughter outside to ride bike, play ring-toss, and do sidewalk chalk
Met older daughter's school bus
Fed daughters snack
Unpacked/went through older daughter's school backpack and dealt with school paperwork
Took daughters to park
Supervised half of older daughter's homework
Prepared and served dinner
Trimmed children's nails
Read daughters a chapter in Little House on the Prairie
Helped older daughter pick out school outfit for next day
Spent another hour inputting contacts into my new cell phone (kill me)
Exercised (30 Day Shred, day 8)
Packed older daughter's school lunch, water bottle, and school snack
E-mailed with housepainters and book publicity people
Made shopping list for next day, including May Day supplies and stuff for child's field trip bag-lunch later this week

As you can see "freelance work" is nowhere on that list. But I suddenly feel a little better about what I get done in a day. And also a little pessimistic about ever getting a whole lot of paid work done while I'm also a full-time at-home mom.

Maybe I need to hire a wife?


Anonymous said...

Oh my goodness! I only made it halfway through the first paragraph before I freaked out wondering what the date was. May Day supplies?! Is it May? Jeesh.
I've stopped hyperventilating now. Your list makes me feel better about my time management! I kept wondering why I couldn't get everything done in a day. Now I know...because when you write it down, it's a heck of a LOT. --Sara

Rita said...

Ok, is it weird that I have NO IDEA about this May Day business? Is this a northern thing?

Shannon said...

@Rita--funny, I got the same sort of comment last year when I wrote about May Day. I believe it must be regional. I don't know if it is northern or just midwestern or what. See this post:

Maybe you can start a trend in OKC! :)