Golden Dinosuars and A “can’t-live-without” app for an Unfocused, Procrastinating, Unorganized Homemaker (Yes, that’s a long title)

photo 1 (11)It’s no secret I am a procrastinator and a bit on the unorganized side. I guess I am what you call “disorganized creative” and although I may want certain things in my life just “perfect” and can have anxiety if not achieved, the “home work”  is not one of those areas.

I’ve talked of my randomness here before and I think part the issue comes down to me not using my time well, well that and an official attention deficit diagnosis, ha. I am easily distracted and can spend way too much time reading wikipedia articles about some random 18th century scientist or artist or work on calligraphy practice or watercolor or spray paint gold dinosaurs when I should have taken five minutes to do the dishes in the sink. I fully accept I am this way, my mind takes giant leaps a million times a second and I do believe there was a reason I was created this way, and am happy for it. But I’m trying to make my life more functional, so I’ve slowly made leaps and bounds over the years because of general frustration at my nature and I continue to look for anything that will aide in my attempt at managing a household as well as the many other mom and life duties I am responsible for.

I recently found and was previously unaware of the 30/30 app. I’ve used it for a few days so far and it has really, really helped (more really’s for emphasis) Here’s my run down:

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-Free – The app is free, there are some unnecessary in-app icons you can purchase but the price is my kind of price.

– Lists & Timers -I like lists and list making out of pure necessity, the problem is that I don’t always accomplish the items on the list and can get lost in the list making process altogether. In this app you not only can make lists and there is options to make different lists for your various needs but what’s really amazing is the ability to set individual timers for each listed item. This is a tremendous help for staying on track. I can look at the time allotted and push through till I hear that satisfying buzz. It’s helping to compartmentalize my daily tasks a bit so I don’t get overwhelmed trying to swallow a whole elephant. There is also the ability to add or take away time in 5 minute increments also pause time or bump an item to lower on the list.

-Clean Design- I’m an Aesthetic snob and I like my apps like I like my mid century modern tastes, the app is clean and beautiful.

-Gestures & Ease of Use- There is a bit of a learning curve with the gestures required to work the app but they are clearly explained and it only took me a few attempts to get them down, once mastered the ease of use is quite nice.

-Getting stuff done- Remarkably I finished my entire list for the day yesterday with the help of this app. I just started using it so time will be the judge. I have to spend a few minutes in morning making my list but its worth it at the end of the day.

All in all, my test week is going great and I just wanted to mention this app to blog friends as it may be of some use to you, let me know how it goes. I imagine it will be very useful in the fall with our homeschool load as well especially since we keep lessons short and not over a certain time limit. If you use it or have used it and love it or hate it, let me know as well. So, in conclusion use the 30/30 app if you want to get more done in your day so you have time to for the important things like painting gold dinosaurs.

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aren’t they cute?

 

 

 

Revisiting Plans & Priorities

 

I have to remind myself of goals and priorities constantly so I don’t forget. In January, I set out to make a list of plans & priorities for the year. Now that it is spring and no longer winter, I thought I should revisit and see how things are going for me so far. This is not a checklist of things I have to mark to validate me as a person but a guide for the type of life I want to create this year.

My categories where Faith, Family, Home, Homeschool, Mother Culture, Art, Writing/Blogging and I just wanted to check in on these things for growth and accountability. Blog friends or Real Life friends I encourage you to ask me how these things are going, I am encouraged when others take interest and likewise take interest in the progress your friends that set priorities this year.

So I’ll go down the list (with excerpts from the Plans and Priorities Post):

Faith

“This is a primary priority because without Faith I am hopeless. 2013 was a year that God helped me begin to unravel from depression and hopelessness and show me to delight in my circumstances, so 2014 will be even more so a testament to what He is doing. I will continue to study and trust more. I want to be more thankful as well this year.”

I have been trying to study more and trust more and grow in contentment and joy. I can say it isn’t an easy battle when a history of depression rears it’s head and you forget truth, but it isn’t my fight really, I am trying to remember to give it up. I just pray I continue to do so. I have been reading a few things for personal study, I read “Keep a Quiet Heart” by Elisabeth Eliott which is helping me to examine my heart. I also stick with my old steady “Morning & Evening” by Charles Spurgeon. I learn so much from this beautiful and encouraging devotion and Spurgeon has a way of putting things to my brain that are equal parts inspiringly truthful, achingly beautiful, and simply revelatory.

We are also very happy to be in a church home for the past year after a very long church search that lasted almost a year prior to that. It is a sweet community of believers and biblical learning that we are happy to take part in.  I am very thankful for the teaching that is really good and encourages me in Faith, this is a recent sermon that blew my mind: Behold I see the Heavens Opened. I encourage you if you live in Augusta, Ga and do not have a church home to join us this Week for our Easter Series.

Family

“Instead of busy-ness, instead of this activity or that event, instead of every kind of distraction I want my family to be a priority and for us to find peacefulness in our home and with each other. This means we will continue in traditions like Sunday Radio Day, no media except music or talk radio. Also, we will make more intentional time together and less sitting around the tv.”

On the busy-ness front this is an ongoing battle that I am hitting with full force daily. It is so easy for our Yeses to become full schedules and stress inducing weeks. I’m not for that. I am not saying this is hermit time for us, -even though sometimes I think I’d like that- I mean that is time to be intentional with our time. Say maybe in your mind, evaluate and answer back with a definite “yes” or “no” when it comes to events that draw you from the home. We have succeeded in doing Sunday Radio Day and trying to reduce the media intake on school days, so I think we are getting somewhere. I can tell the difference between the character of my six year old that plays outside all day versus a little six year old that watches tv all day. We are definitely not an anti-tv house, just trying to reign it in.

We are also being more intentional with family devotions and going through this book together at night time storytime. I wrote a review this month and highly recommend it.

Home

“This is related to the care and cultivating of the home. I want my home to be simple, beautiful and help my family to thrive, so I am making an effort to make it so through the simplest of measures.”

Soooo…. this has been a big struggle for me, for like, always. I am learning to enjoy the day to day maintenance that comes with making a happy home, knowing that real life looks most days like this and it’s ok as long as I am helping my family to thrive and be happy…also coffee….coffee is my new friend.

Homeschool

“The past ten months we’ve had a new baby in the house and now that that new baby is somewhat an old baby we have gotten into better rhythms at home, especially in regards to school for Emma. As long as she’s learning truth, beauty, and goodness through her schooling we are doing something right.”

We are back on track with school and even though we are a bit behind on the schedule we are trucking through and happily making education a priority again. Emma ( our almost seven year old) is enjoying school time and I am loving this time together, sometimes school is interrupted by Alice’s (our 1 year old) needs  and that’s ok we resign to Mom’s bed to put Alice asleep while I read aloud from “Little House in the Big Woods”.

Mother Culture

“Mother Culture (Self Care and Interests ex. staying healthy-eating healthy, gym time and reading for pleasure and knowledge)- It is helping me to think of getting healthy as a thing I am doing to help myself and my children in the context of being a Mother opposed to some arbitrary goal I set for myself. My goal for this is more health, more wisdom.”

I’ve had a slow start and have started back working out and eating healthier. Thankful that one of my gifts recently was a Fitbit so I can track steps and progress. I am continuing to read and am always adding to my “to-read” list.

Art

“I never completed art school and I am down on myself a lot about it, in 2013 both Kenny started actively pursuing Art making more in our lives and this year I want that to ripen even more. Whether it’s photography or printmaking, I want to see more art making this year. I’ve started making plans based on this and am just praying for the occasional quiet times to work on these.”

I’m getting there, it’s hard to be motivated to make art after a long day of kid wrangling but I just need to be intentional with the time I do have.

Writing/Blogging

“I want to be more consistent with my writing and blogging without being overly ambitious. One plan that I am thinking of is setting a manageable schedule for me to work on this. Something easy-like twice a week, just to write out some of the things I have rolling around in my head.”

I haven’t done much writing lately but have been trying to post frequently and this is something I want to make a priority. It helps to sometimes get mangled thoughts on to “paper”.

I guess to some all of these things up the key word is Intentionality and just being mindful of the details.

So how are you doing with your plans & priorities this year?  Do you need encouragement for plans ahead? I hope to revisit this often and please share what you have going on in your lives.