As always, we wait impatiently for spring to arrive, and then it does…… and we are overwhelmed with the ‘chores’ that need ‘doing’….I personally love the chores, but there are others in my house (not mentioning any names, but there are only 2 of us) who are not quite as keen! And, really, I understand completely. I hit the ground running each and every spring….this one is no exception. Here’s my starter list:
- Add a stepped bed to the raised bed area.
- Make trellises for the sweet peas.
- Get well rotted manure from a friend’s farm for the garden boxes.
- Fix up the deer fence, to make it REALLY deer proof.
- Add 2 gates to the deer fence.
- Hand fairy lights under the deck.
- Get a load of rock for the pond.
- Dig the pond!
- Get old tires for the kid’s play area.
- Install the clothes line.
So you see, hubby has every reason to be a bit nervous when I head out doors….and you may have noticed that I said ‘starter’ list….but just to be clear, he does not work on this list by himself…far from it. We are both working together, and he takes his portion, I take mine. I have not added onto this particular list the normal spring activities, such as turn the soil, dig out dandelions, make one or two dump runs of winter debris, rake, divide perennials, seed annuals…….those little jobs are all second nature. My list for spring is of the ‘extras’.
And now you are asking ‘what kind of crazy slave-driving woman is this??’ Not true. Here’s the thing: we all make lists. In our heads, on paper, on the garage wall….How we deal with them is another thing all together. We can easily look at a list as an ‘OMG’, and have heart palpitations just considering it, or we can look at it is an organizational tool, that gets our thoughts and ideas all neatly placed together, for a manageable size, and something we can cross completed tasks off of. In our house, we have a white board in the ‘porch’ entry off of the garage. It’s the first thing we see, and it has our upcoming meetings, appointments, and house/garden tasks listed out in different colors. Yes, yes I am a little OCD when it comes to lists, but for my own mental well being, this is what works for me. I am this way in all aspects of my life: my work desk has several note books that are ‘listicized’ and I use them! I also use my online calendar, email, and task list. I need to. I am very, very easily overwhelmed by anxiety, so if I can take a look, sometimes just a glance, it is my personal reminder that all is fine, things will not be forgotten, and we will get there in time.
And that, my friends, is the second part of this equation. I have had to learn a difficult lesson that not everything on the list will get done in my time frame, or at least not in a big hurry. It has been my husband who has helped me with this lesson. He is pretty much the polar opposite of my frenzied nature, and is about as laid back as they come! Sometimes it makes me want to whack him but most of the time, it keeps me sane. I prioritize the list, with his input, and we do our best. Is this easy for me? Most of the time, but it did take me a while to figure out the the world will not stop spinning if we don’t get the side walk laid tomorrow! And, truthfully, it has given me a reason to cut myself a little slack.
We really can get in our own way at times, especially when there are a lot of tasks at hand, and we need to give ourselves permission to 1: get organized & 2: breathe! Yes there are a lot of things to do, and a lot of tasks at hand, but there are also a lot of moments we lose forever if we don’t intentionally take the time to NOT run in circles.
So whatever is on your task list, I hope you can see it as an opportunity to be creative and share your skills, or just enjoy your time in nature, with a good person at your side, or in solitude as the mood may strike. Remember to stop and see the beauty, hug your friend, kiss your children, take a walk, sit on the deck and just be!