Kids, Productivity

B-day Recap and Better Time Blocking

Birthday Recap:

The birthday boy seemed to have a nice day. Admittedly, it was a bit low key on his actual day yesterday. But, that is just the reality of life (with working parents, at least). Might as well learn now that the entire world does not stop because it’s your birthday. 🙂

Granted, we could have taken the day off or done something extra special, but I think he was fine with this. He loved having his party over the weekend.

And, really, my kids have no shortage of special events/ vacations/ etc. in their lives. I think in 2 weeks we are going to take a Monday off and take the kids to Six Flags Great America for the day (with Ivan’s brother). (This will be more of a “just because” outing, not specifically for his birthday, though.)

So, I worked, Ivan worked, Asher went to summer school and Ethan SLEPT IN (still making up for lacking sleep from the sleepover night). After some morning video game rounds w/ friends, he biked to a friends house for the afternoon. Sounds like a bunch of kids were there and they played a long game of whiffle ball outside.

In the evening we did do some more celebrating! We went to dinner at this local place that is known as the official Birthday Bar. They write your name up on a board, ring a bell and you get a balloon and a free beer (or, lemonade, if you’re 13).

Asher with his usual post-swim practice messy hair 😉

Still not too cool for a pic with Mom and Dad:

And, free mini sundaes:

Back at home, he opened some presents before playing a round of FIFA with his uncle. A good day I think indeed! 🙂

Better Time Blocking:

Today (or rest of this week) my goal is to do BETTER time blocking! Ever since I wrote this post a couple weeks ago about feeling overwhelmed, I still haven’t really been able to shake this feeling.

I can’t really figure out what’s up, besides I guess just being busy. But that’s not a great excuse, because life is always going to be busy in some way.

I was listening to a Deep Questions episode yesterday, and someone had asked what to do when you keep “ignoring” or deviating from your planned time blocks. And Cal answered with some helpful tips, but then followed up with something like, “Although at some point, you have to insert some discipline into the equation.” At some point, you just flat out have to be accountable to yourself, stay on track with what you said you were going to do!

I think I have become lax with enforcing some of my own rules. As in, I “schedule” time for things on paper, but then I am too quick to shrug it off if I fall off schedule.

It might not seem like a big deal, but when you work from home and you have a busy life, this just is a bad plan. What happens is that I end up working until after 6 pm too many nights, because I let my day shift around too much in the moment. 15-20 minutes off schedule here, another 15 min. there….it adds up.

If I’m not stricter with how much time is allowed for X task, it just naturally wants to bleed over into all available space! Which in the long run, comes around to bite me.

So this week I’m REALLY trying this:

1- Planning my day the night before. Waiting until the morning sometimes means I end up just going with what I “feel” like doing, which is not always the best plan/ most efficient.

2-Following Cal’s tip to make myself RE-WRITE my time block plans (I do this in Google Calendar) if I get off track. Maybe knowing I’ll need to take the time to do this will discourage me from getting off track in the first place!

Daily Gratitude:

I am grateful for tank tops, which are my favorite thing to wear in the summer.

2 thoughts on “B-day Recap and Better Time Blocking”

  1. I agree that not all birthdays need to be big celebrations. as long as he got the cake and gifts, I think it’s enough celebration! he seems happy in the photos.
    time blocking. I tried Cal’s method, even bought his notebook but abandoned it. I like more a to-do list and turn off email when I really need to focus to finish something. It’s more doable than having to assign time to tasks that I don’t know how long it takes and constantly re-planning. but you do you! 🙂 hope it goes well and calm your overwhelms.


  2. I would definitely not pressure yourself to take time off from work for birthdays! I did for Paul’s first birthday, but mostly because my sister was in town from AZ. I won’t take Will’s off! Poor 2nd child. 😉 My parents didn’t take the day off, either, but then again, I was born in Feb so I had to go to school anyways! What I remember most about birthdays from when I was younger was that my dad would usually stay home long enough to be there to wake me up/sing me happy birthday (he was usually already out the door and at work before 7a!). And then we got to pick what my mom made for dinner which was a REALLY big deal in a family with 5 kids! And we got to pick our birthday dessert, too. I would either get a DQ cake (odd for winter! ha!) or my mom’s amazing homemade chocolate cake. I feel like us parents can put all this pressure on ourselves to make things super special but then when we think back on what mattered to us, it was really little stuff!

    I have not tried time blocking but will have to look more into it. I need to read some of Cal’s books. I don’t know that my work day would be blockable, though… So much of my day is dictated by what comes up and I have no control over that. So I basically have a task list and deadlines that I am working under and then those get set aside when requests come in from sales. Like today when I spent something like 4 hours working on a $100 million proposal!


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