Category Archives: Planning

Streamlining my life or why no blog post last week

Only Child is doing this in her life

Life is getting too complicated and I am running around in overwhelm too much lately. That is why I didn’t even have time to write my weekly blog post here last week. This is the first time ever I have missed doing a blog post. I also missed doing my author blog post last Thursday. A lot of it seems to be things coming at me from other people and other things – what I supposedly can’t control

Well, maybe I can. If something or someone is stealing my time with their demands, maybe it is time to dump them or dump the organization I’m involved  in or at the very least cut back on what I do when for them. Because what is happening is I am not doing what I want to do because of all this outside stuff coming in.

Last Friday I started to draw the line and did that with someone who was actually helping me and the writers’ group I run with all the stuff to get a special event going. But she does want things done right away. I can’t do that anymore so emailed her that I can’t deal with anything related to that until Monday. She was fine with that and I am grateful that she has been dealing with the city bureaucracy involved in one aspect of it. In fact another organization had the same problem with the city so I’m wondering if it isn’t the same city jerk there causing all the problems.

I am also emailing a potential new client that I cannot evaluate her manuscript until fall  – originally I had estimated June but I just  finished the third rewrite of Beyond Faith and am now back to doing a very heavy edit for the novel of a very understanding client. I had also suggested this this PC (potential client) could also go to another editor near where she lives and someone she, as well as I, know. When I didn’t hear back either way from the PC I presumed she had gone to the other editor. Meantime a repeat client emailed me that she would like me to do another evaluation of her manuscript since she has rewritten it based on my previous evaluation – of course for a fee. Not hearing anything from PC and realizing that my considerate client’s ms was again behind schedule (he knows and is not upset), I gave her a tentative July to meet with her. However, imagine my surprise when last week PC emailed with wanting to email the manuscript, although she did ask if she could email it now. As for fee (and I had mentioned that in my previous email), she mentioned she could mail a cheque or a gift card. Huh. No way for the latter and I don’t just start an editing job without a deposit and without a signed contract.  Guess I will have to email her this week. And if she decides to get another editor, that’s fine with me. Today I also have the handyman here fixing house and property stuff plus deal with the writers’ event planning and do some more editing on the considerate client’s manuscript.

You can see some of the stuff I’m dealing with, some which I don’t really have time to deal with. Last night was the first night  in months I got seven hours of sleep – if you count the half hour I fell asleep watching the news and weather on TV. Sleep is important to me and I’m tired of being tired and not being able to think straight some times.

So, in my quest to decide what to scrap, what to cut  back on, what to put in pending indefinitely I am re-reading this wonderful book by Elaine St. James called Living the Simple Life. She has other books in the same vein and I have one of them – if I can find it in my overfilled bookshelf by my bed. Although the book is written in the mid 1990’s, it is still relevant – she does a whole list of possible time stealers for people and except for Publishers clearing house junk  mail, she is right on. Yes, email and the Internet are on her list, but we can just add more up-to-date time -stealers like our cell phones and other devices and social media. Her chapters are simple and short and very helpful and you can pick and choose which chapters to read.

So with Elaine’s help and my determination (and stubbornness and persistence) I am going to cut the crap and try to live doing things one foot at a time, one thing at a time and where possible I decide the priority. If people don’t like it they can lump it.

And that’s enough cliches for now.

Cheers.

Sharon

Only Child Writes

Garden serenity when things get hectic

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Filed under Decisions, Overwhelm, Planning, Prioritizing, Problem solving, Uncategorized

Only Child calls “hope’ a four-letter word

Only Child gears up to deal with 2015 stuff

Only Child gears up to deal with 2015 stuff

Looks like 2015 is turning into a repeat of 2014 (and 2013) – some just more of the same.

I’m talking about the bad and the ugly.

Yes, I did my overall overhaul of what I do, want to do and have to do and what I can kick out of my life. Trouble is the crap that comes at us “from outside” as I call it, the unexpected problems, are still charging at me (and I presume others) full force. You can’t really boot that out of your life. You have to deal with it and that wastes your time and causes a lot of stress.

Yes (again) I did pray to God for certain things not to happen and for help. Cotton or wool in the ears I suppose at his end.

Without going into a long detailed rant, the Rogers Cable TV service has started intermittent disruption – not just my TV service but at least Tanya and Alex’s next door. So far I’ve had three different technicians here. Despite my vocal (including one of those surveys) with my suggestion – fix all the damn old outside cables on the street, not piecemeal when something goes wrong, Rogers isn’t listening and the problems seem to persist. We had a big play out of this situation for over a month in late fall 2013. Rogers is to blame for this, but God is not listening to my asks for help once and for all here.

The weather – that horrible mix on Saturday (and yes, some freezing rain, although worst in Montreal – despite my prayers on not having that happen – this time it was for more than just me). And now most of Canada is in the deep freeze and getting colder into tomorrow. So, I spent Sunday (before the deep freeze began overnight Sunday) running around doing errands so I could stay put for the most part this week. I had something important to get out in the regular mail (not something that could go by email) which needed weighing for postage, for my business, but being Sunday, presumably the Lord’s Day, Canada Post substations were not open – at least the post office part and one that showed up on the Canada Post locator map wasn’t there. The one near me had no signs inside or outside the store about the Post Office part being closed Sundays. Sunday closure is their prerogative, but they need to let the customer know with signs. I had to find out from the clerk at the regular cash and I was not polite to him when I found out. I sicced Canada Post on this substation.

These and other things happening steal my time and make my health worse.

And of course diminish my hope for 2015.

But I’m not wallowing around in despair. There are thing I enjoy doing and want to do this year. So, I am facing the hard facts. When you get right down to it, you have only yourself to depend on – plus close family and friends you can trust. Or to paraphrase Ringo Starr’s song – you have to get by with some help from (family and) friends.

Not God. “Ask and you shall receive” and “God helps those who help themselves” seem to be fairy tales. So,  I need to forget about hope as such. Hope has now been added to my list of four-letter words which include pray, snow, rain, hell, crap, and damn.

I have to remember my motto – when I see it (or not, as the case may be) then I will believe it.

And not give up.

Cheers.

 

Sharon A. Crawford

Only Child Writes

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Filed under Beliefs, Believing, Family and Friends, Health, Mail Delivery Canada, Planning, Problems, Rogers Cable TV Service, Sharon A. Crawford, Weather, Winter Weather

Only Child asks: Plan or not Plan

Only Child - an old foggie or just the times?

Only Child – an old foggie or just the times?

You know the old saying about the best laid plans…? That and the over-uncertainty of the times we live in, have made me wonder – is it worth it to make ANY plans when too often they get screwed? Blame it on other people, God, Murphy’s law – whatever you believe in, but make no mistake life, society has become too uncertain and maybe too unbearable.

I believe it started to escalate and change once we hit this new millennium. True, there were signs in the 1990s but life was still bearable then. Now it is not. I absolutely hate the world we live in, for the most part. The technology is changing too fast and there is too much of it with the result that many people spend more time glued to their smart phones than actually talking to people on the phone or even what is now considered old-fashioned – email. People are in too much of a busy-rush and seem to be doing too much at once. Then there is what I call “rude rage” which I believe is the result of what I said in the last two sentences. Extreme severe and uncertain weather is now the norm year round everywhere in the world. Hurricanes and tornadoes, for example, used to be infrequent but are now common occurrences.  If you don’t believe me go to The Weather Network http://theweaternetwork.com/ and check out anywhere in the world. Then there is people’s sense of entitlement where it shouldn’t be.

I’m going to stick my neck out here as a senior and say seniors are excluded to a certain extent. We have lived 65 plus years and hopefully contributed to society including our family friends. (Of course not all have.) Add in the government pension plans and for those who are lucky enough to receive them – private pension plans from companies or government departments where you worked. We are entitled to that. We are also entitled to a seat on public transit. And chivalry is not completely dead here. However, more women have offered their seat to me than men – and I’m talking young men – too busy with their smart phones to notice I guess. So a certain amount of entitlement for seniors is okay (including those retailers’ senior days). And I do my part to give up my seat for other seniors in worse shape than I am – men or women or anyone else who seems to need assistance. Except the people and those like them mentioned in the next paragraph.

However, entitlement doesn’t apply to those parents who take over the public transit space with their oversized buggies. I touched on that in last week’s post. Another place where entitlement doesn’t apply is those stupid jerks who stand in the subway doorway (when there is lots of room to move in – I’m not talking crowded rush-hour subways when there is no choice) and won’t move. I had a run-in last week with this late-teens-20ish b**** who was blocking the subway doorway. I wasn’t looking at the floor but straight ahead so accidently stepped on her toe. Because she was blocking the doorway I didn’t apologize – otherwise I would have because stepping on someone’s toes or heels is awful in my opinion. As I walked by, she grabbed my arm and said something rude to me. I said “you are not supposed to block the doorway.” She said something else rude so I pointed to the sign on the glass partition in the doorway which says “Please do not block doorway,” looked at her and said, “Read.” Then I noticed her feet. No wonder I stepped on them. They were sticking out almost halfway in the doorway. She was still there blocking traffic and listening to her music with her headphones when I got out. This time I took care not to be near her.

It is times like these that I wish I had the powers of a witch.

So, there isn’t much I like about this world – but there are a few people and things I do like – my son, my cousins, some of my friends and colleagues, writing and teaching writing, editing, my garden, my books and other reading material, my computers (surprise, surprise – but I’m talking writing, email , blogging, and Internet research here), walking, and sleeping – what little I can get of the latter.

Some of the changes are for the better – for example, the inclusiveness for gay people, especially gay marriages and the total acceptance for that in Ontario, especially shown in our election June 12 with the first openly gay premier. That wasn’t even an issue leading up to the election. And I am not gay.

As for the weather, I prefer summer but I can no longer feel safe where weather is concerned and that’s year round.

And making plans? I do some, much of it is contingency planning. But I don’t hold my breath that they will be a reality. Seeing is believing.

How do you feel about today’s world?

Just sign me a grumpy old foggie who no longer cares that she is cranky.

Cheers.

Sharon A. Crawford
Only Child Writes

 

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Filed under Family and Friends, God, Only child, Planning, Public Transportation, Seniors, Sharon A. Crawford