Friday, January 28, 2011

Fight Back When Sickness Beats Up the Schedule

If your family is like mine, you have experienced your fair share of sickness already this winter.  Sickness tends to put the daily schedule into the tank, even if some of the family is still well.  The past few weeks have been quite rough around here, and everyone is still in some form of dis-ease.  What to do? My instinct is to crawl under my snuggly blankets and hide, but I dare not as the piles are mounting around me:  piles of paper, piles of laundry, piles of dishes, piles of piles! 

One of the tendencies I have when sick or well is to focus on only one task for an excessive amount of time, while everything else falls into ruin.  Enter my version of FlyLady's Crisis Cleaning technique ( Gather three simple tools: a piece of paper, a pencil, and a timer.  Fold the paper in half; fold that half in half; and fold that half in half again.  Unfold the paper and you will have eight equal boxes in which to write tasks.  If eight seems like too many, stop at four.  (You can always turn the paper over when you finish and you will have four new blanks.) 

Now think about what is screaming for your attention.  Write one chore (or even the name of a room) in each box.  Now set your timer for fifteen minutes and tackle what is in the first box.  When the timer goes off, go on to the next box, even if you aren't finished with the first box. (Who ever finishes laundry anyway?) After three boxes have been given attention for fifteen minutes each, use the next block of time to take a break.

Now one hour has gone by, you've just had a break, and hopefully you should be refreshed to begin the next box.  When you finish the first page of boxes, you can start again at the first box or you can flip your paper over and add new chores in the blanks on the back.

Here are my boxes' labels for today: Read Bible; Laundry; Dishes; Shower; Sweep Floors; Help with Algebra; Work on Financial Aid Forms; Plan Menu.  Changing tasks when the timer goes off is key for me.  I also have to use the timer whenever I get on the computer or pick up the phone.  Sometimes I set it for only ten minutes or extend it to twenty minutes, but fifteen minutes is FlyLady's magic number (, as in "You can do ANYTHING for fifteen minutes!"

When the day is done, feel free to throw your paper away, or save it for tomorrow.  Do what you can, and get the kids involved, especially if you feel under the weather.  When you all do a little, it makes a huge difference.  Your children will thank you one day for giving them the tools they need to lead a simple, organized, contented life.  Thank you, dear Lord, for health and strength to do what we can for even fifteen minutes.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Read Through the Bible This Year

There is only one God, and He wrote only one book.  Have you read it yet?  Let's purpose in our hearts to be in God's word every day, all year long.  There are many Bible reading plans out there.  Here are a  couple of links to help you find a plan:

This link even has a "Listen" button!  You can listen to God's word while you work!

King James Bible
Happy 400th Birthday!

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy 2011!

Do you know today's date is 1/1/11?  I don't think there is anything significant about that, but it's neat to notice.  The beginning of a new year is always a good time to reflect on where you've been, where you are, and where you want to go.  What went right last year?  What marked a low point? Take a few moments to write down your thoughts and plans.  These don't have to be full-fledged resolutions, but if you don't write them down, you are likely to forget them.  Also, if you have a specific goal, now is the time to flesh out an action plan.  Do you want to lose 30 pounds?  By when?  If you say, I want to lose 30 pounds by June 30, you now have an achievable smaller goal of losing five pounds a month.  Think of the different facets of your life:  your spiritual condition, your role as a wife, your role as a mother, daughter, sister in Christ...the list could go on.  Are your relationships in order?  Do you need to forgive anyone?  Did you read through the Bible in 2010? I have a brand new Bible reading notebook in which I am writing down names, events, and anything I else I want to remember from my daily reading.  It is my prayer that we all have a blessed 2011, and that we bring more glory and honour to our Saviour than we did last year, and that we share the gospel with more lost people, particularly those in our own families.  I know I must work at keeping eternal things in the forefront of my thinking; how about you?  Happy New Year, dear Christian friends!