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Do you ever feel overwhelmed?
June 25, 2010
10:34 am
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lifeisgood/ Melinda
Louisiana
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Not to be a negative nellie so early in the morning, but I am feeling very overwhelmed. Just curious, how do you stay on top of house repairs, housework, kids and family, farm animals, a garden, an outside job, vehicles, bills  and the myriad of other responsibilites that pile up?

I look around the house and see so many things that need to be done (husband and son aren’t a whole lot of help unless it’s something they want). I have tried making lists but something always takes priority.  I feel like I don’t have any time for things I would like to try because there is always some responsibility waiting my attention.

I have enough dust bunnies to build an empire state building out of dust!!

How do you do it? How do you stay on top of everything?

June 25, 2010
10:54 am
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CindyP
Hart, MI
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I feel like this sometimes…….this week was one of them!  My priority list has changed over the last couple years, but STILL, some things just can’t always keep piling up at the bottom of that list!  And I don’t even have a farm full of animals…just 6 chickens and 2 dogs! 

This week I took each day and tackled some of those big projects.  I feel better today, but some of the things that went by the wayside over the week are being done today now!  I did do loads of laundry throughout and hung them on the line…laundry is just a lot of waiting time.  I made 4 gallons of milk into cheese…that’s a lot of waiting time, too.  That type of stuff was done throughout the big projects.

I used to have a great system that worked….but that involved my husband (now ex) going to work at 3 or 4 a.m. and my day began then.  As I don’t get up at 2 or 3 anymore, the system doesn’t seem to work as well for me now!  All hard work inside the house was done before daylight so I wasn’t tempted by anything outside!  laugh  And I didn’t know about CITR then either  laugh I didn’t know there was so many things I wanted to try and do!

“Learn all you can from the mistakes of others. You won’t have time to make them all yourself.”  ― Alfred Sheinwold

June 25, 2010
11:07 am
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CindyP
Hart, MI
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This just came through my email and it fits so well in this topic!

 

“Every day you may make progress. Every step may be fruitful. Yet there will stretch out before you an ever-lengthening, ever ascending, ever-improving path. You know you will never get to the end of the journey. But this, so far from discouraging, only adds to the joy and glory of the climb.”
 

—Sir Winston Churchill

(1874-1965); British Statesman, Prime Minister, Author, Nobel Prize Winner

“Learn all you can from the mistakes of others. You won’t have time to make them all yourself.”  ― Alfred Sheinwold

June 25, 2010
11:09 am
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Pete
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It is a puzzle sometimes to see what other people can do, while I seem to use all my energy just making do!

Seriously, I try to set my priorities by simply asking which things will be important in a year or ten years.  If I spend my energy on cleaning and such, will it matter?  Maybe, but in many cases, enjoying the loveliness of nature and ignoring the dust bunnies, or taking a neighbor to an appointment instead of doing the laundry is much more satisfying and has greater long term rewards.

Each of us has to discover our own priorities.  When we are frustrated we must also decide if it is an indication that something is seriously out of balance in our lives or if we just need to sit down with a cup of tea for a few minutes.  Often, if I just sit quietly for a few minutes and focus on everything for which I am grateful, the pile of laundry just doesn’t seem so important or overwhelming!

Anulos qui animum ostendunt omnes gestemus!

June 25, 2010
11:16 am
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Suzanne McMinn
Sassafras Farm in Roane County, WV
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All.  The.  Time!!!  (overwhelmed)

 

I pretty much work on a “putting out fires” basis, which isn’t the best way to go.  I figure life will calm down eventually……  I hope!

Clover made me do it.

June 25, 2010
11:35 am
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lifeisgood/ Melinda
Louisiana
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[email protected] “putting out fires” basis……..THATS MY LIFE!!! butterfly

June 25, 2010
11:49 am
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Miss Judy
West Central MO
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When I start feeling overwhelmed with the ever growing “to do” list, I choose just one thing that will make a big visual difference. When I am done, If I can see some progress I feel better. It gives me that little urge to do more. Kind of like the little train that thought he could! “I think I can, I think I can…Oh look ! I did it!”

Sometimes it’s no more than clearing clutter from the dining room table ( everyone drops their stuff there…urrrgh!) and putting on a cheery tablecloth and topping it off with a vase of wildflowers.

June 25, 2010
12:20 pm
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Flatlander
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I do too feel overwhelmed..AND have a list.

You can’t do everything in one day..in wintertime I’m more on house…now I’m outside a lot.

Only keep my  huge  garden clean of weeds is a daytime job, so we try to do a bit every day to stay on top.

My garden is important to me, I love to work for my winter supplies.

If it was not that important, I would make it smaller if I didn’t have time.

Go with what is important for you, are your dust bunnies make you feel bad..deal with them.

If they do not that much…they will still be there  next week

 

Make choices, make a list..and tackle one thing at the time.

It is good to put minor jobs on there also, so at the end of the day you have a lot of * before the things you have done..that makes you feel good.

Always have a plan B, so you are not disappointed if plan A, was not acompliced.

 

But I think very important, you can’t do it all alone, we both made the decision to live in the country, to have animals, so we work on it together.

Having that said..I’m going to kick my hubby of the couch away from the soccer games..to let him mill some food for my turkeys.

And I go  turn the cheeses….

 

 

 

 

June 25, 2010
1:09 pm
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blueberrylu
Michigan
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Melinda—–kudos to you for saying what I suspect alot of us feel like once we leave the CITR, turn off the computer and look around our homes.  I feel like that all the time.  I write lists, have good intentions, but between 3 kids, numerous animals and a husband who sometimes needs me to help him or be his go-pher, it seems like my things never get done and just pile up.  I have friends who seem to effortlessly handle all the stuff I do, and still keep a spotless home, bake bread, do crafts, etc…………….and when I compare myself I feel like a Martha Stewart drop out.  One day I asked one of these friends how she did it, and she shared that she was so exhausted she was getting sick with the lastest cold once again and just wanted to take a nap, but she couldn’t because if she did not have the house picked up and the kitchen clean it would bother her so much she could not sleep at night.  Then she proceeded to tell me she wished she could sit down and watch tv with her family or read a book for a change.  That opened my eyes up a bit—the grass was not really greener on the other side.  I love to read and have been known to nap once in a while to help keep the rest of the stress at bay.  I would rather not be “perfect” and enjoy a few moments of life here and there then be a slave to that perfection.  Besides—-my messy house is my lithmus test for friends.  If they still love me after they have been over on one of my less than perfect days, I know they really like me for myself—-lol. laugh

June 25, 2010
2:44 pm
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BuckeyeGirl
N.E. Ohio
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So…. there’s a couple main questions there.  The one in the title is, “Do you ever feel overwhelmed?”  …my answer is, “HECK YEAH!”

The one at the bottom is, “How do you stay on top of everything?”  …my answer is, “I DON’T!” 

… at least not all the time.  I sometimes claw my way to the so called “top”, but then the edges crumble and I’m back down to at least midway up the heap, or sometimes I lay at the bottom cursing.

Last night, it was a ‘bottom of the hill’ night, when I was opening up all the septic tank openings to see where the problem was… well, I found it, the sump pump was disconnected from the out-pipe.  I’m not sure how it got disconnected, but I decided to take the bull by the horns and call the pump people to clean the whole thing out just to be on the safe side.  At least the pump wasn’t burnt out!  But yeah, now I have a new bill to pay, and now I’m now cleaning the kitchen since I can run water again!  … that shower sure felt GOOD after the pump guy left!  yes yes yes yes 

//edit to add, my dust bunnies have pet dust bunnies!  My mother always said, and I quote, “Our house is clean enough to be healthy, and dirty enough to be happy!”  It’s something I live by!!!!  (good thing too, cause I often face the choice of mowing the lawn or vacuuming the house… the lawn usually wins, and I only hope the rug doesn’t get dirty enough that I can grow grass there too!!!)

Located in N.E. Ohio

June 25, 2010
4:11 pm
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rileysmom
Rural Montana
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You ladies should give yourselves big hugs! hug I am so amazed by ALL the things you do: your children, animals, gardens, cooking, crafts.  You all do SO MUCH!!! 

I am the Martha Stewart drop out….But I’m like the lady who can’t sleep if there’s dishes in the sink or I should have vacuumed. 

June 25, 2010
6:35 pm
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Grandmatotwochicks
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I am also the Martha Stewart DROP OUT!  I only have one child at home now and a husband, summer is our busiest time of the year, we work about six day’s a week inorder to survive the winter, 4 dogs, 7 chickens, 2 cat’s, a garden.  It can be stressful at times, but what I have learned is that when you have young children, they don’t care if the house is clean, they will remember the TIME you spent with them and how precious those memories are.  My priorties have changed the older I get, the house does not have to be spotless, the yard does not have to look like a magazine picture out of  Home and Gardens, more like the hillbillies here!  I know longer care what other people think of me or my house, I have nothing to prove to anyone.  These last couple of years has taught me what is really important in life.  I lost my sister to cancer,  almost lost our house, due to the economy and job situations, and we survived !   So take time, play with your children,  try that new craft, take that time for yourself so you can be good to others!  We really only have today! so make it the best possible day you can! 

 

Life is not a marathon!  Enjoy it and don’t let the small stuff get in the way!hug

June 25, 2010
7:17 pm
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Miss Judy
West Central MO
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I’ve been thinking a lot about this topic. I feel like we become overwhelmed when we start to stress about what other people think…. (when we start to compare ourselves with others) and when we worry about our “stuff”. Maybe if I would get rid of the stuff that I don’t need or if it doesn’t give me pleasure, life would be much easier. I don’t know why I thought I needed 32 teapots …60 Stampin Up sets…23 drawers of scrapbooking paper…80 cook books…8 sets of dinnerware…9 containers (60 qt. size) of fabric and on and on and on….

I want to paint and repair a bedroom…I can’t do it because there is no place to put the furniture when we start the project…the shed is full of stuff I can’t part with.

I belong to groups and volunteer for things I don’t really enjoy.

 During the school year I drop in bed each night exhausted. So things pile up …then I work myself to death in the summer getting things back in order. And then because I am on my feet so much my arthritis  acts up and I have to sit with my feet up.(however, that is when I get to visit CITR happy-flower)

Well…enough is enough! Simplify…simplify.

June 25, 2010
11:02 pm
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monica
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It  is so easy to try to not be mired down by life.  It seems like we are supposed to be able to tackle any and every chore or duty as soon as it gets into our way.  It seems like we are just supposed to talk about good things and about how we are progressing–never struggles–especially if we are in the middle of the situation, but never before the issue is well into resolution. 

 

I let Little N play in the neighbor’s pool–all day–without sunscreen.  We had a garage sale today and it would have taken 5 minutes to coat him thoroughly and completely with the sph 50 that is (gasp and shock:  WATERPROOF).  So now he is off to a fitful sleep after a cool shower and moisturizer that he says is stinky, but makes it feel better–so he left it on.  I can’t even get the jeep out the drive because all the junk is piled in the driveway.  If he wakes up, I will try using a cool shower to rinse all the moisturizer off and spritz him with white vinegar/water.

My budget plan is NOT getting a cart when I go to the store.

June 25, 2010
11:55 pm
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I Wanna Farm
Michigan
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I have a friend who’s house is always neat, she cleans houses most days for work, she cooks all of her families meals, and volunteers. She’s also exhausted all of the time, moody because of it, and doesn’t spend nearly enough time with her kids.

I have another friend who’s house is always clean, she works full time, volunteers; and she’s a nervous wreck all of the time and I think if she didn’t have something to complain about she’d drop dead. She doesn’t have any kids, either, so cut the whole ‘mommy’ time out of that equation.

My house is a mess all of the time, no matter what I do. Seriously, all of the time. My desk is a wreck, my floors always need to be mopped (and I don’t do it, so there lol), and the laundry never ends. I know they look down on me for that, but guess what? I spend a lot of time with my kids and I wouldn’t take any of that time back for floors I could eat off of.  Most times when I’m tired, I sit down and read or nap for a half hour. I’ve learned to weed at short intervals while I’m walking through my garden admiring it, and preferrably in the evening so I can enjoy the cooler weather while I do it. I have a sink full of dishes right now and I have a dishwasher they could go into. So, I had other things that needed to get done today, and by dinnertime I was wiped out so my husband threw in some frozen pizzas and afterward we took the kids to see fireworks and eat candy. My dishes are still in the sink, and I’m going to bed and won’t even think about them until morning.

I know how you feel when you can’t get any help from your family. Mine are no help either unless I buckle down on the kids and take away their electronics (that works, by the way). I think sometimes things matter more to me because no one will help me with them, than they would otherwise seem to matter. Do you remember that woman who lived in her kids’ treehouse until her family started pitching in? Lol Well, a vacation away from them for a week might put it into perspective for them! I was in the hospital for two days a couple of years ago, and they couldn’t wait for me to get back! I was appreciated for a while then! lol

But whatever ends up working for you, just don’t sweat the little things. They really don’t matter. If something happened to you tomorrow, would you regret not having something around the house done or not reading that novel you’ve been wanting to get to for so long? Give yourself a break, you’re a good mom and wife or you wouldn’t even be worried about it! hug

Heather B.

Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on, or by imbeciles who really mean it.
Mark Twain

June 26, 2010
9:38 am
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blueberrylu
Michigan
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I Wanna Farm said:

But whatever ends up working for you, just don’t sweat the little things. They really don’t matter. If something happened to you tomorrow, would you regret not having something around the house done or not reading that novel you’ve been wanting to get to for so long? Give yourself a break, you’re a good mom and wife or you wouldn’t even be worried about it! hug


 

Words to live by.  I still stress myself out way more than I need to, but there are times my brain kicks in and I take the time to evaluate how important some of the “stuff” in life is.  I have three criteria to hold it up to.

1)  Will my friends or family love me less if a, b or c is not done or not done perfectly?

2)  When I am 80 years old and rocking on my front porch will I care about this or even remember it?

3)  Will this “stuff” affect world peace?

 

Most of the things we worry and stress about fail all three criteria, so relax and enjoy life a bit.  I should be up doing dishes, laundry and picking up the house, but I’d much rather hang out with all of you and learn about all the way cool country things on here and to dream a bit.  That’s what makes me smile and helps me to get through the drudgery of the daily duties.

June 26, 2010
10:15 am
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Miss Judy
West Central MO
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Amen, blueberrylu, Amen.

June 26, 2010
10:17 am
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lifeisgood/ Melinda
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Very sound advice and inspiring posts from all of you! I think I just gave myself permission to not try to be Wonder Woman. 

I love everyone’s comments but the quote cindy posted and blueberrylu’s 3 questions really settled my soul that it really doesn’t matter if my dust bunnies become a skyscraper as long as the important things (i.e. my family) are taken care of.

I don’t know why this post reminded me of something from long ago but I will share it anyway because I always found it amusing.

When I was 21 I had been married for four years and had two kids. (one three and one newborn)My best friend couldnt have children and she and her husband had just adopted a little three year old girl and some of my best memories are of the two of us piling children into our vehicles and driving around to old abandoned and overgrown homesteads where we would (gasp*) “borrow” long forgotten plants to plant in our yards because we were POORRRRRRR and couldn’t afford plant nurseries. Anyway, this friend of mine and I dug enough daylillies to plant down her entire driveway which was really a little road thru their property to their home (about a tenth of a mile). The kids played and bonded while we worked that year on her daylilly patch and as we finished and celebrated with homemade burgers and kids splashing in a kiddie pool she turned and looked at me and said “you know 100 years from now when I am dead and gone some little snot nosed young wife is going to come along with a shovel and go WOW daylillies!!!! and dig them all up!”  She’s probably right. All that work–it took forever– and when shes gone no one will care for them and someone else will dig them up and enjoy them.  I guess the point is Enjoy what you have now, while you have it. Do the things that bring you pleasure. One day you will no longer exist and someone else wont remember if you had dust bunnies or not, they will remember really good times spent simply doing things you enjoyed and that there was a simple pleasure in doing them.

 

P,S. Friend still lives in same spot and has daylillies coming out her ears and every few years she has to divide them.  Years later while we were in our 40s she looked at me one day and said “what the heck were we thinking?!” lol

June 26, 2010
12:30 pm
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blueberrylu
Michigan
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I love that story Melinda!!!  hug

June 26, 2010
4:23 pm
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Rose H
Rural Staffordshire, UK.
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I read posts on here and wonder how on earth do people put SO MUCH into a day.      

Heck yes I often feel overwhelmed, and there’s just me, hubby and the cat!  Oh and Mom now 87 living 1/2 a mile away  We have two small gardens and I never seem to stop and only occasionally get to the top of the heap.  My husband is a truck driver and leaves the house at 4am five days a week so it’s mostly on my shoulders. warrior  I get done what I can and think bu**er the rest!  So don’t feel bad stop – we’re all in it togetherhug

If it's got tyres or testicles it's trouble.

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