• J - Juggling


    #AtoZChallenge 2019 Tenth Anniversary blogging from A to Z challenge letter


    J is for Juggling

    If you are older, try to remember the many tasks your 25 year old self juggled in one day.   If you are still young - take a moment in your busy day to check out your future.  

    Let see ... I pick a typical Friday when I was 25 years old, married, a grade school teacher and pregnant.  

    Friday looked like this:
    • Pop out of bed before 6 am
    • Dress while sipping coffee (thankfully set up the night before.)
    • Feed the cats before breakfast - Clean the litter.
    • Feed myself breakfast standing at the counter making a bag lunch
    • Make a quick grocery list for food shopping (budget for the week was $20, ha!)
    • Quick review of Friday lesson plans 
    • Commute to work
    • Stop for weekly gas fill up on the way
    • (We will skip the school day where I juggle the hundreds of things grade school teachers do in 8 hours.)
    • Gather up next week's lesson plan materials and papers to grade. 
    • Commute to grocery store - Fridays were food shopping day right after work - and stop by the liquor store to pick up some cheap wine fizzy something.  Liquor wasn't a no-no for a pregnant woman 45 years ago.
    • Do a fast unpack of groceries, a quick clean up of the apartment upon getting home
    • Fix dinner, eat quick, and clean up
    • Prepare a few dips for chips and veggies for visiting Friday night friends.
    • Slap out board games and snacks
    • Grade a few papers while waiting for guests to arrive
    • Entertain until say midnight
    • Spot pick up after company leaves
    • Set up the coffee for Saturday morning
    • Hit the sack at 1:00-ish am.
    • Inserts bunches and bunches of bathroom breaks in-between other things (remember - pregnant!)
    Saturday
    • Off and running again for weekend fun activities and school work prep.

    This is the 72 year old me - trying to remember what the 25 year old me juggled 45 years ago.   Exhausting to my eye now - but I don't remember being all that tired then.

    That was then!

    Today!

    Some demands are gone, of course, and some are changed - no job, no commute, not pregnant for sure.  Still married - however, husband is disabled (legally blind), and needs more assistance.  Today a 72 year old me might prepare for a Friday - with company like this.  

    Wednesday (Yes, Wednesday!!  Give me a break - I am older.)
    • First off, there is absolutely NO POPPING OUT OF BED on any day of the week!! 
    • Make a list of everything I need to do - without the list I would just sit and knit or read.
    • Vacuum and dust.
    • rest
    • Prepare the menu and grocery list for the next week and for Friday company.  This prep is exhaustive - checking cookbooks for recipes and reviewing grocery store sales.
    • rest
    • Cook Wednesdays dinner, eat and clean up.
    • Assist husband with finding an item he has lost, or searching Amazon for something he wants to purchase, or sending an email on his behalf, or problem solving a computer issues he cannot find on the screen, or picking up prescriptions on his behalf. 

    Thursday
    • Food shop - this takes all morning now - no fast spin through the grocery store.  There is more checking for cheapest prices, reading food labels to insure a choice is healthy, doubling back to previous aisles to get things I missed the first time through. (Lots of doubling back.  Sigh.)
    • Unpacking groceries and repacking certain items - freezing, labeling, reorganizing - making sure things are where my legally blind husband can find them independently.
    • rest
    • Begin to prepare food for Friday night company dinner.
    • Order take out dinner - which I pick up because my husband doesn't drive.  Reality check:  No standing and cooking tonight's dinner after food shopping and cooking for the next day.  
    • Assist husband again with something.


    Friday
    • Compete food prep for company
    • rest
    • Do a pick-up sweep through the house
    • Do a liquor store run - for company and for us  - Yes, we have a nice cocktail once a day - one of the benefits of aging and not giving a sh*t.  (See?  It isn't all gloom and doom.)
    • Clean the guest bathroom so it isn't a health risk, ha! (I don't think I ever worried about health risks at 25 - remember, young ... I was going to live forever!)
    • rest
    • Set out appetizers (now I call them appetizers instead of snacks 😝)
    • Serve dinner and entertain until about 10:30 - fading out occurs about that time after company prep.
    • Pick up after guests
    • Collapse in bed around 11:00 pm
    Saturday
    • Recover!  Schedule nothing! 

    So what lessons have I learned about juggling all the balls of life with this exercise?  
    • Thank God I am not trying to juggle a job as well.  Yea!!! For Retirement!
    • Lists were never part of my 25 year old life - my brain retained everything.  Everything I tell you!!   Today?  My brain still retains stuff like before, but the retrieval window is extremely short.
    • I can't abuse my body by eating crap appetizers only!  We serve dinner.  (Sigh, those were the good old days, when dips and chips were good enough!!) 
    • The cost of living is crazy more than almost 50 years ago.  Weekly food budget has increased from $20 to $120!!
    • Question of the Day:  When do I get to retire from cooking dinner!!!  My next life: Marry a chef, who wants me out of "his kitchen.".
    • Still taking lots of bathroom breaks - 72 years old, you know! 
    • I remember laughing at my mom who would schedule exactly one thing a day on her event calendar!  One thing!!!  I couldn't imagine why!   

    I get it now, mom. 
    Sorry. 
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