“How you spend your time defines who you are.” – Oprah Winfrey
I love calendars, paper products, pens (different colors), post-it notes. I use to have such a great system – everyone had a colored pen designated to them so I could quickly glance at my calendar and know who was going where. If I were to look back at my calendars over the years I could see how I spent my time….
For many years there was a lot of PURPLE (Mary) with dance, piano, voice, PTO meetings, PAC meetings, volunteering at school… BLUE (Jim) with Fireman Meetings, HazMat meetings, work events… a little GREEN (me) on weekends for my work… and Samuel only had a little on the page because he was young. Did this “define me”? I guess yes as a mom and wife and worker…. but did I really like that “definition of me”?
I also always had the “perfect fitting calendar” and may change a couple times in the year if the pages got too messy (because of my writing or cancelled appointments or even if I didn’t write it in the “correct” color). I know what you are thinking… she has issues!!!
Well, this year I am still debating the perfect calendar for me. The calendar I am currently using has gotten wet (and I ironed it to get the wrinkles out). I have bought 2 new calendars for this year but cannot seem to give up the old one… So far this year, I have only used pencil… My observation on this:
- When you write in pen it is more permanent – just the simple act of writing in pencil makes life more flexible — just as the other day all my appointments were changed by others and it opened a whole day to spend with a friend (:
- This is the first full year that I have CHURCH activities on the calendar. By changing my work schedule last year, it OPENED up SUNDAYS to be in church with the family.
- Work called me today about my schedule and I realized I had never even wrote it in my calendar yet for February.
- I have more days with NOTHING on them which leaves the day open for wherever I am needed…
- I have not done one of my extensive “to-do” lists this year (I type them in the computer by column by category and it may take a whole page typed)
Does this make me MORE or LESS productive? If there is nothing on my calendar or on my to do list – does that really mean there is nothing to do? (I wish). What it can mean is
- You open the day up for the Lord to provide opportunities that you may not have enjoyed (i.e. spending a day with a friend, running someone to an appointment, making a nice meal for the family).
- If a change in your family happens – like someone gets ill – you are not juggling – you are there to take care of them.
- If the weather is nasty, you have no where to be (:
But I think the move has been instead of planning our lives away… we have more empty space to spend together at home.. I can focus on the more important (school, homework, I.E.P.). However, since EMPTY SPACE is new to us, I think I could fill it more wisely – do more things “as a family” (this does NOT include watching TV in the same house but different rooms – LOL). It has eliminated the rushing from one thing to another.
When I look at the scripture in the Bible (Ecclesiates) about Time (see below)… I have decided the empty space I want to fill with
- PLANT positive messages in my husband/children hearts! UPROOT the bad weeds that strangle our family.
- KILL bad habits that steal from family time and HEAL broken hearts from the damage of the world (school, work)
- TEAR DOWN walls of misunderstanding and BUILD strong foundations in our marriage and children’s lives.
- Take time for WEEPING and listen without judgment and opinion (this one will be hard). Increase LAUGHTER (one of the best things aboutFloridatrip was just to truly hear and feel Mary’s laughter return) (Samuel has discovered how to laugh with a snort)…
- DANCE with my husband, as an exercise, and like no one is watching (:
- Allow toys/books/music to be SCATTERED while playing but teach everyone to GATHER to help the home run more smoothly.
- EMBRACE the day and our differences and REFRAIN from harsh criticism, yelling, and opinions (if not asked for)
- SEARCH for ways to improve our children’s education and GIVE UP worrying what others think or say!
- KEEP what is important to each person but THROW AWAY (or give away) the excess that does not improve our lives but clutters it.
- MEND relationships with family and friends.
- SILENT time for me to renew my soul. SPEAK only with loving heart (and not in anger)
- LOVE unconditionally.
- PEACE of mind and PEACE between husband/wife, parent/children…
WOW – looks like My to do list just got long again — but so much better than what use to exist — it’s the year to PREPARE to PLAN for establishing a stronger family and stronger friendships. Empty calendar days means spending my time in these things will truly define who I WANT TO BE!!!
*** ECCLESIASTES 3: There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: A time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, A time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, A time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, A time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, A time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, A time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, A time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace.