One of the greatest things about being a stay at home mom and pastor’s wife is that I have the luxury of setting up and keeping my own schedule. One of the hardest things about being a stay at home mom and pastor’s wife is setting up and keeping my own schedule!

If you are the type of person who abhors schedules, then it will be difficult for you to make one and keep it. If you are the type of person who adores schedules, then you have a problem when life calls upon you to be (dare I say the word?) flexible!

Can you guess which one I am? Go ahead, guess. Okay, I’ll tell you. I’m an Obsessive Scheduler or OS! The phone rings, and Mrs. So-and-So is sick and needs some soup. I have to stop doing math with my daughter (which is the first thing on my school schedule…and yes, I have different schedules) and take soup to Mrs. So-and-So. It would be easy for my type of personality to be irritated at the change of plans.

Or perhaps my husband, out of the blue,wants us to go have a family day, out in the woods. EEEK! Change a whole day’s schedule?? *Gulp* Someone just cart me off to the loony bin now! Unheard of! How easy it would be for me  – the OS – to complain and share all of the things on my to do list, which is posted right next to my schedules! I have goals to accomplish here, people! I can’t be stopped by ladies needing soup and trips to frolic in the woods!

See how unbalanced I can get? It’s sad, really.

What about the opposite end of the spectrum? The Ultra Relaxed Lady (URL, but not a web address) will not know where her iron is, or even what shirt should be ironed. Her kids don’t know where to put their shoes, so they just toss ’em. She doesn’t get her chores done, or she does one job twice, because she’s just not paying attention. She floats through each day, doing some things and leaving others undone for days. Someone comes to the door and she’s embarrassed – it’s been two weeks since she vacuumed! Mrs. So-and-So is sick. She wants to take soup, and has plenty of free time, but can’t start till she buys groceries first, which she sometimes does on Mondays, but didn’t this week and it’s Wednesday! Sure, she’s free to go exploring in the woods with her family, but they don’t have any clean clothes, because she’s forgotten whether laundry day was Tuesday or Thursday. Life is rough for the URLs of the world, too.

The best plan is balance! We OSes need to relax a bit, and the URLs need to tighten up. It’s that simple. Okay, glad we fixed that! See ya later!

Just kidding. 🙂

Here are a few tips for those needing to tighten up:

Housework goals not accomplished? Here’s a schedule that might work for you. You can juggle it around till it fits your life.

Monday – Menu planning/grocery shopping
Tuesday – Bathrooms
Wednesday – Laundry
Thursday – Floors (sweep & vacuum)
Friday – Kitchen (stove, fridge, etc.)
Saturday – Change sheets, clean bedrooms

Of course, there are jobs that need to be done everyday, like emptying trash, dishes, etc. And if you’re family is large, you can’t do laundry just once a week! But, really, one major chore a day or area of chores is doable.

For more home cleaning and organizing tips, visit the Fly Lady.

Do you need to plan your day? Do you homeschool and need help keeping it all organized? (That’s a whole other post! lol!) Visit Donna Young for zillions of choices in lesson plan sheets, calendars and more!

For those of us with OS tendencies, we need to re-prioritize. I know, that sounds silly! We’re the ones who are prioritizing – to the max! But, that’s not what I mean. Getting chores done is important, but is it more important than spending that day frolicking in the woods with our children? They only stay small such a brief time! I can’t believe that tiny baby I brought home from the hospital will be thirteen years old in a few weeks!  I want to savor the moments. My bathrooms can be cleaned at midnight, but chasing butterflies is only done in the daytime. I can sweep at 5 AM, but I can’t catch lightning bugs then. And I can dust when they’re grown! Right now I need to read them a story. Those are my true priorities. How can we stay focused on the right goals each day? That comes from having the very first thing first each day – Bible time and prayer time. We open God’s Word and sit at his feet. We tell Him our cares and leave them there. We ask for His help in planning our day, and we remain open to His interruptions. Oh, believe me, this is hard for us OS people! But we can do it, or at least do better! 🙂

Both URL and OS type ministry ladies need to keep in mind that there are important jobs to do, but people trump schedules every time. The lady needing a meal and the family needing a frolic are vastly greater than housework or math. We are here to help and show love to people, not things. That’s what the ministry is all about.

With love,

This post, with journal questions, is available to download or print HERE.

Feel free to contact me HERE or on Facebook. Thanks for reading!

2 thoughts on “First Things First

  1. elnasmith says:

    Reading this made me smile . . . 🙂 I can totally relate. I like to plan ahead, keep a schedule and stick w it, if I can. But as you very well know, something unexpected comes up all the time. Usually on a Sunday night Jared and I would go over our schedule for the week, then he’d ask me, “tell me what’s on your ‘to-do-list’ for the week” haha! And he sometimes teases me for not being able to sit down and relax until I accomplished everything on my list. Over the years though I learned to be more flexible and to smell the roses along the way, thanks to Jared. 🙂


    1. I hadn’t read or thought about this post in ages! Thank you for digging through my archives and taking the time to comment. 🙂


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