". . . little shall I grace my cause

In speaking for myself. Yet, by your gracious patience,

I will a round unvarnish'd tale deliver . . ."

(William Shakespeare's Othello, I.iii.88-90)

Wednesday, January 2, 2008


I have been thoroughly enjoying the slower pace of the past week, hibernating indoors with my husband and children as we engage in some much needed rest and recreation both individually and as a family. At the same time I have also managed to keep up with the laundry, keep the house fairly clean (except for the master bedroom--still haven't gotten around to that one), and cook some decent meals (yesterday we celebrated New Year's Day with our pastor and his wife, serving up a Southern-style smorgasbord of fried pork chops, collard greens, black-eyed peas, mashed potatoes, cornbread, and buttermilk pie--all homemade!)

In the midst of all of this, however, is a little voice that each day gets louder: "Time to tackle that task list . . . all those things you never have enough time or energy for during the year . . . things like filing & organizing & putting photos in albums & deep-cleaning & advance planning for teaching the children & working up a solo piano piece & studying up on corporate tax law & starting an exercise program & working on reducing your coffee consumption & . . . . ") The first few times I heard that voice I smacked it down; I just wasn't ready. Now I am starting to listen ever so slightly. But as I try over the next few days to take advantage of the larger and more numerous blocks of time that are currently before me, the challenge will be to not lapse back into the frantic, stressed-out and overwhelmed person that I often seem to become in my daily life. I am reminded of something my friend Susan (one of the wisest ladies I know--way too wise for her youthful appearance) has said: I can excel at one thing, or do pretty well at two, or so-so at three, but start adding a fourth and a fifth and a sixth thing to the mix, and suddenly it all comes crashing down. (I'm not sure if I got that exactly right, but I think she will forgive me the loose paraphrase.)

So this week I have been doing a pretty good job of cooking and keeping house (it probably helps that we had company this week and will have more this weekend). And I have even been cheerful about it! But in the near future I will somehow have to start managing not just the cooking and the cleaning but also the homeschooling and the literature class and the piano teaching and the church choir accompanying and the school choir accompanying and the chauffeuring and the editing and the Solo & Ensemble practicing & rehearsing and the chess tournaments and the taxes and . . . .And I don't know how I'm going to do all of that, much less get around to the things on the task list that I will undoubtedly not finish this week.

Time to take a deep breath and channel my best Southern belle: "I'll think about that tomorrow!"

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