I am one of those people who rationally know that there's only 24 hours in a day, but I irrationally try and fit in 36 hours worth. Like handmade bread dough, a little pinch of time here, a little pinch there, and what I end up with is a recipe that sometimes works and sometimes burns up in the oven. On days that I get it all done (like today: babysat my niece, took the kids to Kaiser, picked up the drycleaning, did 6 loads of laundry, took out the garbage, straightened the TV room, wrangled dinner on the table) I'm elated - like a manic house frau. On days that I'm less than productive, I'm irritated at the stains on the wall, I'm cursing the overflowing trash can, I'm internally cussing the whole way to the grocery store, praying to God there's no lines and that one of the two mini-shopping carts is available so Nick has something to push during our visit. On these less than inspring days, I promise myself and my husband that one day I will perfect the handmade recipe for balance. I'll practice and perfect it and it will just work out. But truth be told, what I really want is box mix (preferably from the 99 Cents Store) that would look something like this:
Put in container
Add one cup of water
Mix well and set in pan
Put pan in oven at 425 degrees
Sit on your butt for three hours and watch Oprah and CMT
While you chill, your house will be cleaned
Your photos will be hung
Your walls will be painted
Your kids will be bathed, dressed, diapered and stimulated
Your food will be bought and cooked
Your clothes will be cleaned, sorted and put away
Your husband's undershirts and socks will not be dyed pink
Your Ebay items will be bought, photos taken, put online, sold, and mailed
Your writing with Herb will be inspired, enlightened and sold
You will lose weight while snoozing
Take pan out of oven and wahlaa - what you have for yourself is one delicious piping hot loaf of Fantasy Quickbread!
Of course this magical concoction is ridculous, but no more so than my real To-Do List:
Laundry on Mondays
Kids rooms on Tuesdays
Den and Floors on Wednesdays (alternate dusting furniture with wiping down venetian blinds every other week)
Kitchen on Thursday (alternate cleaning out fridge and cleaning windows every other week)
Bathroom on Fridays
Food shop on Saturday
Miscellaneous organizational projects on Sunday
In between all that, write, play with kids, go to church, keep up with family and friends, exerise your mind and body, spend time with James and... here's the funny part... attempt to relax.
Now I'm not saying "Poor me... I have so much to do..." It's more of a constant battle on what's most important in life. Have a clean organized house to write in? But who watches the kids while I clean and write? Or have a messy house where I only play with the kids all day? But then I don't want people over out of embarrassment. Only buy fast food so I don't have to cook? But who has the money for that?
I can't seem to eliminate one item. Like a Domino train, take one tile away, and the rest comes crashing down.
Does anyone out there know the answer? Short of getting a cook, a maid and a nanny? Which really brings us back to the Fantasy Quickbread scenario. Except in this case, the cook can bake it, the maid can clean it, and the nanny can serve it to the kids.