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By habit, I’m a listmaker. I usually have several at any given time – one on my smartphone, one handwritten and floating around in my purse (along with receipts and other shreds of paper I have long forgotten a purpose for), and at my desk at work. Since I know I’m not the only one out there doing this – just as busy, just as pressed for time as I am – I thought I’d give you a glance at how I keep myself from taking a trip to the loony bin.

Not that I don’t deserve to go for other reasons, but let’s stay focused, mmkay?
My to do list for the home isn’t very long at the moment. It’s not that I don’t have plenty more to do to the house, it’s just that creating a to do list of hundreds of items instead of the top five that I want to take care of in the next month (or so) makes me feel… well, defeated. I mean, there’s really only so much I can fit into my purse, and that many post-its would likely leave me in a heaping mess of frustration and expletives screaming, “It’s too much! I just don’t have the time!!!
Thus the reason why my home improvement list is limited to five items at a time. Things like:
  • Prep the kitchen for paint
  • Try out a wallpaper removal product I ordered online (more on that in another post – and you won’t want to miss it!)
  • Paint the bathroom hinges to match the new knobs (more on that, too!)
  • Test out fabric medium for a fun paint project in the bathroom (I probably don’t have to even put a comment in this spot anymore, you already know it’s a separate post)
  • Purchase primer for another paint project
But, in truth, I’d only really be telling you a tiny piece of the story if I just left it at the above five. Because before all of this can get done, there’s the real to do list that has to be taken care of before all of the DIY-related stuff can even be in the realm of possibility. Things like:
  • Taxes
  • Get fitted for the bridesmaid dress I have to wear for my sister’s wedding in three weeks (hooray for losing weight that it is too big everywhere, frick for the fact that it means more time rushing around to get it to fit properly)
  • Finalize plans for her bachelorette party
  • Get my hair colored and cut so I don’t look homeless at either event
  • Go for a body wrap (part of my birthday preparations)
  • Get a spray tan (also for the above reasons)
  • Mani-pedi (delayed to the last possible moment so I don’t get have to do it twice before the wedding)
  • Renew my auto insurance/shop around with my current homeowner’s policy carrier to possibly get a multi-policy discount
  • AAA membership renewal (sheesh, everything is renewed on the birthday!)
  • Renew my driver’s license (thank God I can do this online instead of at the dreaded DMV!)
  • Get emissions testing…
  • …so I can renew my car tag
  • Do some laundry already!
  • Get new tires for the car (after a recent flat I realized that this is long overdue)
  • Gather the last shred of sanity I have left to plan a much-needed girls weekend with my best friend this summer
Most of these things are due to the fact that I have a birthday and a wedding to attend in less than a week from each other, and that doesn’t really leave a lot of time for anything else. Gee, remember the days when birthdays meant presents instead of deadlines? If only.
So, while DIY troubles are taking a backseat to more immediate issues, I just need to keep reminding myself that these things will be very of-the-past in just a few short weeks. And by keeping my otherwise infinite home improvement desires to a limited few, I can look at my list and confidently cross items off without feeling like I’m running in circles or in over my head. Then, it’s back to the usual never-ending to do list!
Gee, won’t that be wonderful?

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  1. I like the “Only 5 Things Per List”. I get momentum by finishing a list. My to do lists usually run a full page and are never finished.