Monday, February 11, 2013

The Shiny Quarter

I trust this rainy morning/day finds you, my readers, well and happy! I had a little thought this morning that I wanted to share with you. My husband and I have been reorganizing our daily schedule to allow Daddy some time to school the children right after supper a couple of nights a week so that he can be involved with their education. As a result of that little rearranging, I've been able to catch up on many things that have sadly been put aside for the sake of priorities :-) I am able to better schedule my days so that there is not a pile of things that didn't get done during the day that have to be done at night instead of having time to focus on more family things in the evenings.

As I was sweeping after lunch a bit ago, this thought came to me. I'd like to call it the "Shiny Quarter Syndrome". Have you ever noticed that when you give your child a job to do and 20 minutes later it's still not done, you find them far away from the original job doing something else? Why is that? Well, their focus was not totally on the present job they were given to do. The "shiny quarter" caught their eye and they were off to climb another mountain.

Many times as a mother and homeschool teacher, I find myself distracted by the shiny quarter. I'm right in the middle of a lesson or housekeeping job and my eye catches something else that needs to be done. "Oh, I'll just take a quick break from this and start on that too!" is often the phrase that comes to my mind. After all, I'm a woman and I can multitask efficiently, can't I? Many times the answer to that question is "NO". When we chase our shiny quarter, we end up at the close of the day with many things started and few things accomplished.

For me, laundry is my biggest shiny quarter:-) I HATE IT. I'd rather be shoveling manure than doing kidding. So this is what I do now to avoid my shiny quarters on my laundry days....
    1. Mondays and Thursdays are laundry days. Period.
    2. I wash, dry, and PUT AWAY each load as it is done. NO piling up folded clothes.
    3. I've trained even my six year old to manage laundry.
    4. We don't do laundry any other days of the week. NO exceptions. So, if you want clean clothes, be careful to not needlessly dirty them that way you won't run out :-) Believe me, a few times of not having any clean clothes to wear because you were careless will cure a child of not handling their laundry carefully:-)

This is just a simple thought, but one that is needful in our daily lives. A friend of mine once said "oftentimes when we say "I don't have time", what we really mean is "that is not a priority for me". Don't let your shiny quarters grow to the point that they overshadow your priorities and cause you to have to daily say "I don't have time". Cash in those quarters for some quality and focused time on your responsibilities to your home, health, and family!

Redeeming the time,


  1. Wonderful though for the day. I completely understand the shiny quarter syndrome and have spent my day busily chasing them only to end up tired and feeling like I have nothing to show for my effort. I, too have been trying to put things in place to stop this syndrome :) glad Im not the only one with the plague!

  2. Good post! I have been there many times!


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