planning

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I always want more, more, more out of life.  More quality time with my children during the day,  more exciting, varied meals three meals a day, more time for reading or sewing or baking, more patience in those crazy, crying-tantrum-stressful moments with four children, more peace, more love, more help, more understanding, more overdue book forgivenesses, more laughter, more contentment, more keeping things tidied, more sticking to goals, more being spontaneous, more being organized...

This (mostly) noble desire for more always returns my eager heart to planning.  Nothing gets done around here without it.  Not a trip to the pool with four in tow or making dinner at a reasonable time or exercise.

 

Planning is one of the big lessons I learned early on after the twins twins were born.  If I want to do things the way I want to do them, I have to set aside real time to plan.  And plan every single detail if I can.  I know well now that taking a simple trip to the grocery store means knowing where each child will be and what their job will be and where in tarnation the food will go, etc.  After trial and error and planning many approaches, we do it, all five of us, mostly flawlessly.  Mostly.

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It is easy for me to get overwhelmed by all of the “more” that I’m striving for and working for daily, and so I categorize, I focus on a grouping of things I want one day at at time, and set real deadlines for others.  I draw up how I want the week to go the best I can by plugging in tasks, projects with the girls, when to make baked oatmeal so there's enough time for it to bake, etc.  I then can set the tone for the week ahead.  And there is much more peace and fulfillment for everyone because I can plan for all of my little people as well, who may not know quite as well as I do, time tables and such.  That way the day isn't all about what I need to do as mommy and homemaker, but what they need and want as well.

I'll be the first to tell you that I rarely do everything I've planned perfectly or within the perfect deadline.  But does that really matter? I'm 10 steps ahead being and doing what I want for me and my family than I would have been without carefully creating a family plan.  I know that for a fact.  Progress and goals and hopes and dreams and sewing dolls don't happen without it.

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Some of the things I want more of need to be written down so I can have a clear mind.  I've recently started putting these ideas in my categories section on Things on my iPad.  (Yes, I finally gave in and switched from binder to iPad with my reward money.  It is incredible.  But that is for another time.)  When there is something I need to remember to do or Caroline asks to do, I can put it in that category to be sorted at a later day.  Caroline, might I add, writes in her own category things she wants to do or remember.  She thinks she's hot stuff.

How do you plan for the minor to major dreams and tasks in your life?  Do you write down what you want? Do you write down steps to get there?