Here I am, on the computer, instead of taking down the Christmas decorations. I have women coming over Friday night to scrapbook, and the dining room table is covered with candles, ornaments, and plates. You'd think I'd be more motivated to do something about it, but I'm not. Instead, I'm reading blogs, checking e-mail, and trying to think of other free ways to promote my Creative Memories business. I would much rather read all day than clean anything; if I could get a job where I was paid to read all day, I would jump in a heartbeat! I am the person who reads every piece of written material that comes in my house. The trivial things that I pick up would scare most people if I admitted how many details I remember about what I read, or even the people who I know.
Ever since I was little, I have taken procrastination to an art form. My mom used to make me clean out my closet when I was young, and what should have been a 2- or 3-hour job would take days. Of course, me being a hoarder didn't help the situation. I had tons of shelves in my closet, as well as my own filing cabinet. I had stacks of paper and art supplies taking up most of the lower half of my closet. I would carefully examine each item on the shelves before I decided what its fate would be. More often than not, it would go back into the closet, or, if I felt like I would be in trouble if there didn't appear to be less stuff in my closet, I would be a nice big sister and give it to Natalie. Cleaning out my closet was one of the things that I hated the most about childhood. It was traumatic to me to have to get rid of stuff, because I thought that everything had feelings. Mom and I always ended up screaming and crying during this task. Somehow, I would get it all done, late at night after everyone else went to bed. Mom and Dad would hear me banging around and come to yell at me, and I would proudly show them the finished product.
Moving on to college, any time that I had a test or project due, I couldn't study until my apartment was spotless. I would know that I had these things due, but just couldn't make myself start them. I guess I work well under pressure.
Our first house, which was 1007 square feet and had one bathroom, a single-car garage, and a single-car driveway, was smaller than the apartment we lived in before it. One night, I got bored, rearranged the whole garage after Darren went to bed, and parked a car in it. I was dying to wake Darren up and show him my masterpiece, but somehow I don't think he would have appreciated it as much as I did. Of course, being that it was a single-car driveway, I think we parked the car in there for about three days. I did feel a sense of accomplishment, even if it was short-lived.
Now, when I clean the house, I clean the whole thing at once. It drives my husband crazy, because he doesn't understand my system. I move from room to room as I get bored in each room, and clean everything at once. It doesn't look like it's getting clean, but eventually everything comes together. For example, I could start with the kitchen. I unload the dishwasher, but before I wipe the counters, I find something that belongs with the medicine upstairs. I go and put that away, then notice a pair of shoes that needs to go in Zach's room. I put those away, then find a cup that belongs in the kitchen. This way, I have variety in my cleaning. I think the problem is that we have too much stuff, and I don't want to deal with it. I don't have control over all of our stuff, so I get overwhelmed and lose interest.
The funny thing is that my classroom is always neat and organized, and everyone at work says how efficient I am. I have control over my classroom, so it doesn't overwhelm me. Of course, having kids to help clean up does save time... My co-workers tease me and say how spotless my house is, but they have never come over on a Thursday or Friday evening, when we've slobbed the place up all week. I get to the end of the week, and have no desire to clean anything. I'm tired, and all I want to do is read or watch TV.
Well, I guess I need to stop procrastinating. Zach needs a bath and to go to bed, so I can sit on the couch and spend some quality time with a trashy library book.
Christmas Letter Cookies – Four Ways
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