Saturday, February 16, 2019

Living the Pantry Lifestyle - New and successful attempts at planning

If you have followed my writings here at CTB&Me more than five minutes, you will know that the subtitle could be "living life a little at a time".  That is how I have learned to accomplish more than I thought I could given intense fatigue.  It is remarkable what a work rest work rest (etc.) schedule can do.

However, what was missing was an overall look at what was being accomplished.  A birds eye view of my days so to speak.  I think that started when I decided to switch from a larger planner to a smaller one, thinking I didn't really need a large planner, anymore.  I only needed to write down appointments. I was wrong.

Long ago, in my former life, I wondered why I accomplished so much in my job but didn't at home.  I realized it was because at work, I used a planner as my brain and at home only a wall calendar to keep track of appointments and special days.  Since then, I've kept a planner but obviously one too small for daily activities didn't work.

So when it came time to purchase a 2019 planner, I went back to the larger size.  Now, well into February, I have realized how much I missed using the planner as a place not only for the writing of appointments but to write down the important items on my To Do list.

It helps to actually SEE what has been accomplished in a week.  One thing I learned to do when we were homeschooling was not only to write what I planned to do... but to reverse engineer what I actually DID that day on the planner.  I'm doing that with this one, too.

For instance, on Friday I had a couple items written that needed to be accomplished and they could be checked off when completed.  But I had a little more energy than usual and the roads were actually clear (for a change this winter) so I took the two boxes and one bag of items needing to go to Goodwill and dropped them off to finally get them out of the Study.

The boxes contained extra jars from when I finished cleaning and decluttering those shelves in the garage.  Somehow I had accumulated a lot more glass jars than I could use in this lifetime.  Off they went for people who could use them, along with a few books to pass along to charity.

I also stopped by Aldi since it was nearby and checked to see what meat was on sale.  I'm trying to restock the deep freeze and sure enough, I was able to buy one whole chicken for 99 cents a pound and one family size package of chicken thighs for 88 cents a pound.

When I arrived home, the whole chicken went into the deep freeze and the family size package of chicken thighs were divided into two with half staying in the refrigerator to use quickly and the other half heading for the deep freeze.

None of this was planned but it all was written down on "Friday" after the fact.  If you don't do this, you will forget what was actually accomplished that you didn't plan each day.  Like I said, I learned to do this when we were homeschooling because so much of learning happened that was not planned. 

My planner obviously tells me when there is a doctor's appointment or an important birthday.  But I also have written down when I need to do a blog post (of course) or a book review.  I also learned a new tip from a favorite blogger, who learned it from a friend... to write down what day she waters her plants.

Her friend told her about the concept of "Thirsty Thursday", that is how she remembers once a week to water her plants.  I have been writing Thirsty Thursday on the appropriate day now... for the plants and to check Florentine's water canister.  (There are a couple plants I need to check over the weekends that may need more water in winter.)

I did this last Thursday and Florentine's water canister was almost empty.  Obviously she does not complain about it loudly and with gusto as much as she does when there is no kibble.  However, she usually does the same thing Victoria used to do if she thinks her water needs changed, she sits next to it and stares at it, then stares at me until I notice.  So funny!  But I digress...

All this to say that writing things down on the Planner again is not only helping me remember things to do but also to remember how much I did.  Sometimes I think we are hard on ourselves and think because not much of the big stuff is getting accomplished, nothing is getting accomplished.  Not so!

We all know our high energy times of the day (mine is a couple hours after I wake up to early afternoon) that we can schedule what needs to be accomplished.  After that is all grace.

Mentioned in this Blog Post
This is the planner I use but I bought it on sale... here.

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Deanna Rabe - Creekside Cottage Blog said...

I’ve never used planners but I do like the idea of writing down what’s been accomplished! So much of what we do is hidden work, tidying the linen closet, sorting through a drawer etc. it’s easy to overlook our work!

copperswife said...

Yes!!! I, too, find that keeping a planner is vital, even though I'm no longer homeschooling kids. Keeping track of what needs to be done, as well as those things done that weren't planned, is so important.

Anonymous said...

I do my "planner" weekly on a clipboard each week. And I do add "extra" things that I get done. I water plants on Friday, but was away yesterday, so thanks for the timely reminder!

mdoe37 said...

I think you might have something there, Brenda. I was super human at work and it has always bothered me why that doesn't translate to home. I always thought maybe it was the lack of paycheck at the end of the Since my eye surgery, I don't seem to have the memory (maybe its selective) that I used. I found a planner at the dollar store and I'm looking online to see if something calls my name. I kinda felt bad that maybe I was lazy, but I think I simply have trouble focusing. (It also doesn't help that my grandmother was a hoarder...I don't see the clutter)

Anonymous said...

Brenda, I'm laughing at your description of Florentine and her water dish. My two kitties, both tortoise shell females (i.e. VERY vocal with major attitude!) wrap an arm around their one-gallon waterer and send it flying across the kitchen when it is time for a refill, usually at 3 am. If I hear a Whap-Swish-Clunk-Clunk-Clunk in the middle of the night, followed by a disgusted MEOW!! I know what I'll be doing in the morning.

Cats - personalities - attitudes ... They keep life interesting.

gracie said...

Great way to really know what you did as well as what needs to be done.

Gretchen said...

I do something similar. I have a planner and a journal. I do all forward planning in my planner, so appointments and things I plan to do a certain day. Then in my journal (which is a bullet journal/commonplace book/scrapbook journal), I record what I actually do on a given day. I love doing this as I can see how much I actually accomplished and where my time went. Thanks for sharing!

Rebecca said...

Finding an app on my phone a great planner AND prodder! I'd be lost without it. Of course, my journal still holds records of the completed tasks as well as other minutiae and treasured thoughts....