Category Archives: Schedule

Learning New Things

Today, Ian and I embarked on a new journey. Well, old and new, of sorts. I scheduled our lives down to the minute for the first half of the day, until 2pm. I’ve done this before, and it always works, but it’s been a while. I left the end of the day open to avoid getting burned out too quickly. That allowed us to get most everything done that we had to do, school-wise, cooking-wise, etc. We knocked out all of the undesirable subjects right off the bat, and it felt really good to get everything done at a decent time. At 2 o’clock, we tore into one of Ian’s new toys that has been sitting around patiently on a shelf. It took us 2 hours, but we were able to get his Arduino up and running, download all the software, drivers, and extras, run an example program and figure out how to do a couple of different things by making small changes to the existing code. It was really fun for me. Ian knows  more about electronics than I do, and I know more about code-writing than he does, so it was kind of neat to both be learning something that mixes the two skills together. I can’t wait to go deeper and learn new things!Circuitry

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Time, Space, Stuff, and Happiness

The average person on this earth probably takes up about 2 or 3 square feet of floor space at any given moment. It doesn’t matter whether you are rich or poor, busy or relaxed, you can only take up so much space.

The average person can concentrate on _ things at any given moment. It doesn’t matter how many toys or gadgets you have, you can only do so many things at once.

The two-income family usually thinks of a way to split the chores at home. They each spend x amount of hours at work, and x amount performing chores. At the end of the day, they have _ hours to entertain themselves.

Because one adult and the children can complete the household chores while the other adult is at work, the one-income family has much more time to enjoy their surroundings, even though they may not be able to afford as much space or as many distractions.

What do you think? Care to elaborate on my vague ideas about time, space, stuff, and happiness?

Ten Minute To-Do List

Or maybe I should call it the Ten Minute Miracle Cure, since I have accomplished so much in the last two days.

My First Problem

I tell myself that I need to be relaxed in order to do a good job on a project. As a result, I feel that I can’t work on a project unless I have a immense span of free time in front of me. Since that never happens in real life, it seems like I’m always struggling to get things done. Sometimes I wait until the last minute, when I absolutely have to make time to get it done. But then other things get pushed out of the way, and I get behind on things like laundry or homeschooling.

My Second Problem

I have too much to do. I usually email myself reminders or leave messages from other people in my inbox so I won’t forget to go to a function or get something done. Since Christmas, my inbox has only been completely empty twice. Yesterday morning, I must have had fifteen messages that I was afraid to delete. Today I’m down to four, and I’m planning to mark all of those off by the end of the day. I generally have so many things that I have to do, I never even get around to the things that I want to do.

My Solution

I made a list of everything that I would like to do every day. It’s quite lengthy, and some of the things on it never even get considered since they aren’t important enough to take time from other projects. But then I told myself that I only had to spend ten minutes a day on each activity. Now usually, I need tons of time to even think about writing or playing the piano, but yesterday, I approached every activity as though I were only going to spend ten minutes doing it. To be honest, I didn’t expect to get much done. I figured that my brain wouldn’t even switch gears fast enough to accomplish any real work; but I was getting so far behind, that I needed to try something new.

The Twist

I did just fine. My brain kicked in immediately, and I was crossing things off my list left and right. I was that close to getting so many things done (within minutes), but all those weeks I kept telling myself I needed more time, so I never got started. Remember that old proverb, “Well begun is half done”? Well, it’s true! Also, I found that once I had started, I would continue a few extra minutes to finish up, especially when I could see the light at the end of the tunnel!

An Added Benefit

You know those things that never, ever get done? You know, like piano practice or teaching your son how to read an analog clock? Well, for things like this, a little goes a long way. Better to spend a few minutes a day reviewing than to try to teach everything all at once, and then dreading the next time you have to do it! (Your kids will appreciate it too!)

PS

I’ve also added a few limitations to my to-do list. A sort of “not to-do list,” for lack of a better term. I’ve limited myself on checking blog stats, checking email, and reading posts on Facebook. Speaking of which, I definitely need a new strategy for Facebook. I don’t want to miss anything, so I generally spend an hour or two a day reading through all of the status updates. Does anyone have a good method for staying caught up without wasting a bunch of time?

If anyone wants an example of my 10-minute to-do list, let me know, and I’ll upload it. I’ve arranged things according to priority, but I left off the things that I do everyday as a matter of course (such as Bible reading, chores, etc.)