01 March 2010

Feels a bit like a haze of homecooked meals and housework ...

Lately, despite the repeated snow-ins and relative downtime from the chaos of the "back to school, Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Jan. birthdays" back to back rush that, obviously, does go on at quite a clip for about five months (making my wee kindergartner's first year at school and my 8th graders last year in middle school feel like they are flying by!!!! sniff, sniff - seriously - I'm sad), I am NOT as productive as I should be.

For example, I spend a lot of time sitting and having tea with Lilliana or playing with the many bins of toys in her room or in Milo's (they are home with me most days). I could easily allot some of that time to digging out my, for lack of a much better word, "memory pile" - a project that has been ongoing for almost five years now. See, the old mission-style library table that I use for my projects is in her room AND piled high with kid artwork that needs to be sorted, art projects that need a display home, half-finished knitting projects, a couple of handwritten journals, a baby recipe book, many different video, point and shoot and fab but out of date Nikon, Minolta and other beloved but now nearly obsolete cameras, piles of loose photos, bigger piles of various awards, honors and other masterpieces and memories from all my babies and schoolkids. Why, then, does it all seem beyond me? I am a perfectionist along the lines of some serious OCD activity. Is that why?

And really - I should have my photos organized. Thus far, I do have all years but last year burned to CDs, DVDs (and beyond that, either in folders or archived and / or accessible in iPhoto), and I have all the kids' baby book memorabilia with the appropriate baby books, AND I have all the loose photos semi-labeled and "filed" with "like" photos. I have a video log of every video we have ever taken of every kid, BUT (and this is huge), they are all from different cameras - they are not in order - they are all over the place. Deep breath. Already - I need a break. It really does overwhelm me. ME! I've run marketing departments, worked into the wee hours of the morning on magazine deadlines, finished copy for a client in one tenth of the time it should take me, organized huge corporate events with the symphony in less than a week (complete with butler served canapes and a gourmet coffee bar ;-).... What is UP with me? I even find it upsetting to download and move digital photos, fearing I may lose them...... Oi - I need help OR I just need to dig in and do it. So... that's what I'm trying to do..... Scribble a few notes into a baby book - hang a photo - send some photos and catch-up letters to friends and family. Doesn't have to be perfect - just needs to be done. Sincere gestures of "hello" - happy details like family photos - should NOT be stressful. Time to simplify.... And, yes, I'm working on it (it is abundantly clear that this will be a struggle for many years - gone are the days of neat closets, one lowfat coffee on my way to work, quiet lunch with friends, quick pick-up of my happy toddler at daycare and hours of one on one time with her over Disney movies, mac n cheese and piles of drawing paper or coloring books - it is now constant movement, imperfection and time divided among many - albeit happy time ;-).

So.... it seems that I do a lot of laundry lately - manage to get it stuffed in drawers and tiny closets and wardrobes. I cruise food sites for meatloaf, lasagne, chicken casseroles and other comfort food recipes. I clean the kitchen again and again. I make the beds and wash the same sheets again and again (didn't I buy us all new ones - where ARE they?), I drop off at school, I pack lunches in the morning, I drag the little ones on endless errands.... And I DO like it. I really think I need to embrace that feeling - not dwell on the wet floor in the van - the annoying Wii games - Lil's stuffy nose - Enzo's erratic Kindergarten teacher - Milo's constantly wet pull-ups and refusal to wear his new Superhero underwear - Olivia's constant list of needs (photos for yearbook, new b-ball shoes, letters of recommendation to high schools, lacrosse fees, a laptop!!). It'll all get done (I am patting myself on the back right now - I'm pretty flexible ;-).

So - here's to a good (but busy) week. Congrats to Canada's gold medal hockey team (it was their crowd - just great that they won it :-). Still - thoughts and prayers to Chile (the earthquake appears far worse than initially reported).

Photos: Just some happy chaos.

Quick Note: A friend recently made me aware of the "power photo sorting box" (or something to that effect) from Creative Memories, the old scrapbook company (I went to many a Creative Memory party when I was a new mom back in Virginia) that has now gone digital - and online (no more door to door stuff), and... is probably a pretty good solution for that annoying mix of digital, photo negs, videos from different cameras all from varying stages in HD development (similar to what I describe above and probably similar to what a lot of you experience as well). As I always say, worth at least a look.....

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