Done list

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Part of our Shabbat ritual is an homage to the Eshet Chayil reading (“A woman of valor…”), wherein Bill thanks and praises me (in English) for my contributions to the family’s well-being.  Sometimes it feels as if my life now consists of doing invisible things.  The things I do are mostly necessary, if not essential, and yet only if they aren’t done are they noticed.  I’m not complaining (not right now, anyway) but as a person who gets a certain charge from having others notice my work (applause, anyone?) it can be disorienting not to get credit for the specifics of what I do.  It’s not that Bill doesn’t appreciate my efforts — he does, and encourages the kids to do the same, and builds it into our weekly ritual — but that he doesn’t necessarily perceive them.

Every now and then I contemplate writing out a list of what I’ve done on a given day, just to see it in black (or whatever color pen I can find!) and white.  Partly it’s to notice my accomplishments, and partly it’s to notice the sweet stuff that happens during the day.  Inspired by Stacy but feeling more prosaic, I made my done list for yesterday:

  • woke up at 6:45
  • started a load of laundry
  • got Akiva to school by 8
  • picked up a prescription
  • took Gideon to the park
  • started a second load of laundry
  • went with Gideon to the Asian grocery
  • went with Gideon to the bank
  • went with Gideon back to the Asian grocery (yep, cash only!)
  • took Gideon home and gave him lunch
  • took Gideon upstairs for a (too-short) nap
  • hung one load of laundry out to dry, put the other in the machine
  • made and ate my lunch
  • made a batch of crusty rolls for dinner
  • made mango & sweet sticky rice for dessert
  • washed lunch & food prep dishes with Gideon in the backpack
  • folded a load of laundry with Gideon in the backpack
  • read some truck books on the couch with Gideon
  • preset all the pots I’d need for dinner, salted the pasta water, etc.
  • picked up Akiva at school
  • saved us from a needless argument by acknowledging the coolness of a playground we passed, even as I declined to stop there
  • went to the farm to get our CSA
  • picked raspberries with the boys (included in this week’s farm share: what a treat!)
  • played and chatted with another mother and her two sons, also lingering in the raspberry patch
  • took the boys home and got them and all our gear into the house peacefully
  • made and served dinner to the kids
  • learned some new Hebrew words from Akiva
  • served dinner to Bill when he got home
  • changed over both beds to winter sheets & blankets while Bill got the kids ready for bed
  • nursed Gideon to sleep
  • snuggled Akiva to sleep, after singing Birkat Hamazon with him in the bed
  • made enough challah dough for three round challot (one for us, one each for the friends who were going to help Bill build the sukkah today)
  • soaked black-eyed peas for today’s lunch
  • soaked chickpeas for Sunday’s sukkah party
  • washed more dishes
  • put the warm weather bedding back up in the attic
  • went to bed around 11, thanks to Gideon needing nursing
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3 thoughts on “Done list

  1. Hear, hear! But I can’t tell you how many days my list would be just as long but would have nothing tangible to show for it — no soaked beans, no challah dough, no crusty rolls and sticky rice, no freshly picked raspberries. Andy knows that when he comes home to the news that I SPENT ALL DAY “PUTTERING,” he’d better fix me a drink but quick. “Puttering” means I went through stacks of paperwork from the schools (recycling most), I made/canceled/changed appointments, I paid bills, I returned phone calls and emails, I de-cluttered, etc. And still no dinner in sight. 😦

  2. HMDean

    This is my favorite one, partly because I laughed as I pictured you doing it, and partly because it speaks to the endless diplomatic acts that mark a Mother of the First Order:

    » saved us from a needless argument by acknowledging the coolness of a playground we passed, even as I declined to stop there.

    Brava!

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