Organized Chaos

Doesn't she look so lovely and peaceful planning her day? That is not me... not even close.

What are some tips and tricks you use to keep your life organized? Sometimes I use a list of blog topics to help me decide what to blog each week. This one was the next suggestion on the list, and it made me laugh so hard I snorted—like, snorted so hard I almost cried. For someone obsessive about organizing, I am so disorganized it’s not even funny. I guess you could say organized chaos is my way.

I homeschool my daughter and work from home, so our days are pretty full. I have a binder with her curriculum planned out to the last detail… but we almost always change it twenty times through the school year (the beauty of homeschooling.) For the house, I have a chore list that is almost always blank until crunch time on Saturday. For writing, I have a planner with chunks of white space for days and weeks I forgot to plan.

I guess you could say I enjoy organizing more than I enjoy following the plan. However, things still seem to get done. No one starves or runs around naked. Shopping happens, books get written, and my child still learns everything she needs to for her grade level (and often beyond.) The hamster survives… actually, he’s kind of fat, so there’s a diet in his future. All in all, we’re happy with the chaos we cause.

Sometimes I think I need to get it together—meal plan, stick to the school curriculum, set writing goals and get them done, deep clean once a week, and do all the social things… plan, plan, plan. And my house ends up like traffic control… only everyone got a different schedule, and airplanes are crashing all around us.

Some things work for me, like the new planner I am actually using. It doesn’t set me up for failure like dated planners do (seriously, what’s up with that? Maybe I don’t want to plan every hour of my life?) It’s simple, has checkboxes (because I’m a lister and I like highlighting my to-do list,) and even lets me skip days without wasting space. But honestly, who knows how long that will last?

When I’m on a roll, we eat three super-healthy meals a day and snack on veggies… then I’m tired and order pizza from Stoner’s, end up elbow-deep in cheesy goodness and wipe the grease on my pants.

Other times, we’re learning Russian as a family… then everyone else decides they don’t want to learn a whole new alphabet when the one we have is perfectly fine, and I’m the only one who knows the difference between a mamochka and a papochka.

My point is, I could sit here and offer dozens of tips and tricks, but I’d be a giant hypocrite. The truth is, doing what works for your family is probably the best way to maintain a healthy, happy, loving family unit. For us, that means trying new things, then falling back into our usual chaos. We’re happy here… just send cookies and a Russian translator, and we’re all good… mostly.

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