Lazy Cat

It’s not often that I’m accused of doing it all. My friends don’t usually say [sincerely, sarcastically or otherwise], “Oh, you’re so good. How on earth do you do it all?” I mean, I guess a few people – women who don’t know me well at all – might have said those things. But not often. And not lately.

Since I started working again, I’m barely keeping my head above water. Actually, that’s only true if “keeping my head above water” is code for “feeding myself and my family and not much else.” My list of to-dos is more accurately described as a list of missed deadlines and things I’m never going to finish.

Yet, even as I say that and as often as I admit my shortcomings and sinks full of dirty dishes, I know that the life I show the world – the new recipes or the summer bucket list or the books I’m reading or whatever – might present a different picture. So, just in case you think it’s easy for me to talk about giving up on perfect because I’m secretly Super Woman who actually can do everything [and do it well], I thought I’d share a list of the things that I don’t do.

What I Don’t Do {it’s a long list!}

Get up early. I know, I know. Early bird, worms, gotcha. But the thing is, I am simply not a morning person. Sure, I feel good when I miraculously manage to pull myself out of bed earlier than normal. But I. Hate. Doing. It. And you can’t even really blame me on this one, as it truly is my parents’ fault. That’s right. When I was little, my dad worked evenings and my mom let me stay up late until he got home. Or until M*A*S*H was over. Either way, staying up late was drilled into me at a young age, and I’ve given up fighting it. I am, for better or worse, a night owl.

Iron. Oh, the humanity! If there is one chore that will put me over the edge faster than a whining child in the grocery store line (who, you know, happens to belong to me), it is ironing. I detest it. Despise it. Can’t stand it. And so, I don’t do it. I buy clothes that don’t need ironing and use my dryer and anti-wrinkle spray stuff liberally.

Sew. Okay, look, gun to my head, can I sew? Yes, I can. But I really don’t like it. I’m talking about picking out fabric, following a pattern, threading a machine and all that. If a button pops off in our house, I do sew them back on. But I do not, under any circumstances, make clothes. Or curtains. Or blankets. Or anything that requires a pattern, a needle, thread or all of the above. And, though all the other women in my family do sew – and very well – I don’t even feel bad about this. It’s just not my thing. (Besides, my mom has been teaching Annalyn about sewing this summer. So as long as the sewing gene only skips one generation, like the cleaning gene apparently did, we’re good.)

Coupon. I love you. And I’m happy that you saved a million dollars last year and have 47 boxes of Ritz crackers in your basement. But I do not have the time or – more honestly – the inclination to sit at my dining room table with coupons and sale papers and cookbooks and grocery spreadsheets spread out like I’m in some kind of domestic war room every week. I. Just. Can’t. Do. It. (Plus, I’ve tried. And after an entire lifetime of eating and buying almost all store brand foods, it’s really not worth it for us.)

Run. I wish I could run. I dream of running. As in, actual dreams while I sleep of running free and fast. I see Facebook status updates from every other person in the world who is running and am filled with envy. But at least for now, this body is not cut out for running. Insert sad trombone sound here.

Dry my hair. You know what makes a person look put together? Dry hair. You know what makes a person look like she really can’t get it together at all? Wet hair. I know this. I do. And yet nine mornings out of 10, I leave the house with wet hair. Don’t blame my parents on this one. I was raised better than that.

Clean my floors [often]. Big surprise, right? I do wish I was better at this, but I’m not. So just keep your shoes on when you come over, okay?

Garden. As a solid indoorsy person (and one with major allergies to boot!), it would never in a million years occur to me to spend my weekends digging in my yard. Never.

Scrapbook. Ohhhhh, this is a sad one! I love scrapbooking, but I have not found the time for it in a couple years now. I’ve even added “purge scrapbooking supplies” to my to-do list. Who knows? I may pick it up again in the future. But for now, I’m satisfied with Shutterfly photo books and Facebook albums.

Redecorate my house. In the years Mark and I lived in our house before having Annalyn, we spent a lot of our extra time, money and energy making each room our own. I loved picking out paint colors and prints or frames for the walls, and I was always trying new candles or shelves or fake fruit in a bowl arrangements. However, that is the first thing that went by the wayside when we started our family! We finished the big house projects and decorated a nursery while I was pregnant and then, other than moving Annalyn into another room and making it pretty, pretty pink, I haven’t changed much at all.

Send birthday cards. You know that person who always send sweet thinking-of-you cards in the mail and never misses a birthday? Yeah, I want to be her. But despite my collection of great greeting cards sitting on my desk, I’m not that person at all. Heck, I’m not even the person who mails giveaway prizes, Christmas cards or care packages on time.

Watch the news. I worked in some form of public relations for 10 years. And yet I never developed an appreciation for the local news. Much as I want to be informed and intelligent, I just can’t bring myself to tune in to the latest report of who got shot, who got robbed and who got traded to another team.

Finish non-fiction books. It’s true. I rarely finish non-fiction books. I may love the first four chapters and know, without a doubt, that this book is well-written and probably life-changing. But the odds of me actually finishing it are not good. I love me some fiction, but the real stuff that requires me to think and change and do? Well, now, how fun is that? So, in all honesty, I really struggle doing it (even though I want to). I’m a non-fiction slacker.

Of course, that’s just the beginning of the long list of things I don’t do. All those crafts I’ve pinned or bookmarked? The science experiments and backyard games? Nope. My poor kiddo has to make do with coloring books and play-dough. And I’ve had “dining room wall” on my project list for about a year, in hopes that I will find the time and money to create a frame/art gallery on our wall . . . but last week I finally put the empty frame, unframed poster and metal word artwork on my “maybe at the next house” shelf in the garage.

I don’t do it all. I don’t do anywhere close to all. I choose the things that are important and do my best to make them happen. And the rest of it? Well, I’m learning that it’s not the end of the world if I move some of these things from my to-do list to my wish list – or even admit that they don’t really have a place on any of my lists.

What about you? What do you NOT do?

P.S. The inspiration for this post are all the great “what I don’t do” posts I’ve read over the years. Thank you to these bloggers for being honest and encouraging me with their to-don’t lists! Musings of a Housewife, The Tiny Twig, Simple Mom, The Diaper Diaries, The Tiny Twig (again), Simple Homeschool, and Simple Mom (again).

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