Friday Five: Smarter Not Harder Edition

Kathrynzj writes:

I returned to the office today after over a week of vacation. I’m not the best at re-entry, but I do find myself with a renewed interest in being a bit more stream-lined in the way I approach things. 

I’m also open to ideas.

Well, now. I’m on vacation and lost track of the day of the week. That’s a nice problem to have, I know. 🙂 However, life will return with a vengeance when we are back to the usual routine of appointments, school, work, music lessons and a fall of college applications. Yikes!

I decided that even though Friday is long over, it would be good for me to think about this topic. So here goes…

What are 5 things you do or things you have bought that have made your life simpler/easier to manage?

1. my iCalendar – I sync my phone, iPad and laptop to my on-line calendar. I add to it the school system’s important dates, appointments for family, etc. etc. It was crucial in planning a recent trip to see colleges in Ohio/PA/NY/VT last week. Everything was on it – the phone numbers, reservations at motels, etc.

2. a password “lock box” I have on my iPhone. I don’t know about you, but I have WAAAAAYYYY too many passwords! Some of the secure sites I have to use (i.e. medical records at work) require that I change my password every month. Then there’s the copier codes, the door combinations, bicycle locks, AI yi yi yiiii! too many passwords and numbers!!! So it’s MSecure to the rescue.

3. Once-a-month cooking: I’ve really adapted this to “large batch” cooking. Basically I do a bunch of things that require the same basic ingredients at once. So ground beef, onions and peppers would be prepped for tacos, spaghetti sauce, lasagna, chili, etc. See a sample cooking session of mine here…)

4. Digital books. Sounds weird, but I can keep track of several books on my Kindle, especially ones that I’m in varying degrees of completion. Otherwise I can’t find what I want to read, need to read, or have already bought but can’t find on my overloaded bookshelves.

5. Devotional life: I use Pray-as-you-go as a podcast-based prayer/devotional tool. It follows the Lectionary so it helps me stay in touch with the Church at large, since the congregation we are a part of does not use Lectionary readings on a regular basis.
Bonus: What’s something you wish you could manage better.

:sigh: Where to start? The possibilities are endless.

  • Housecleaning? I need to get back to FlyLady, BUT I need the household to chip in and help. I’m also going to try out a new app that syncs calendars etc with FlyLady, because if it does not come to my mobile phone with a reminder chime, it doesn’t get done.
  • Exercising? I have promised to try out Couch to 5K with the urging of The Johnnie. It is NOT because I want to be a distance runner. I don’t have the interest (or the knees) for that. It’s simply to try a regular exercise program. We’ll see how that goes.

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