Monday, 13 January 2014


Not doing very well with this whole writing lark at the moment, I'm afraid.  My body is playing silly beggars and not doing what it's supposed to, with the result that every day I wade through treacle anew - least, it's the way it feels.

But hey, my priorities for the times of crisis have been set in stone (of the metaphorical sort, that is) long ago, and - as might have well mentioned previously on an occasion or dozen - they are pretty simple and self-explanatory: food and laundry.  As long as that is taken care of, we are fine.

And where do challenges come into it ?  Well, to be honest, day-to-day life, even if it does concern little more than managing a three-hour day at work, provision of meals and washing of clothes and linen, is a bit challenging at the moment, but we are rising to it.  So far :)  

Also, I happen to be somewhat cognitively challenged at the moment, for which read: mind like a sieve.  My weapons in this particular battle have also been identified and put in place long ago: a massive pinboard in the kitchen, where food store lists, menu plans, shopping lists, currently used recipes and faciendas (which you might have well met under their other name - "to do lists") live;  a moleskine diary (which has a lined page for each week for lists and stuff); and a sheaf of post-its, stuck wherever they are most likely to be noticed for a relevant task, in order to remind me that such and such needs doing.

As an aside, a crash-course in how I menu plan: 
1. consult the freezer contents list
2. consult the storecupboard contents list
3. stick head in fridge
4. work out 21 dinners that can be made based on the above
5. distribute around the 21-day menu plan for variety
6. figure out a few lunches and breakfast and/or treats that can be made based on the above, add to the bottom of the menu plan list
7. take out the recipes for the week ahead out of the folder and stick to the pinboard
8. check if any ingredients are missing and add to shopping list

Now, all of the above works pretty well no matter how dopey I get at any given moment.... Because the system has been tried and tested, and crucially, in place prior to the crisis. By now it'd second nature, and in many ways, like a second brain when the one in my head just isn't doing the job.

As far as the rest of housework is concerned, I have a spray bottle of white vinegar and a stack of microfibre cloths, and things just get a spray and a wipe when they start getting grotty - glass and metal first, to make them nice and shiny, and then the rest just needs a wipe to make it hygienic, even if it's not sparkling.

So here is what I am challenging you to do today:  identify two areas of your life that are most crucial to keeping your family afloat, and put a system in place that will make it possible to keep floating through most crises.  Training family members to take over your duties is acceptable - indeed, desirable ;o)

Oh, and another thing - for six months last year, I have been doing the Royal Mail Survey.  In a nutshell, you post and receive test items, enter them into an online system, and get paid in stamps. Pretty good, especially if you sell stuff online and could do with some help with postage costs.  After six months, they make you have a rest for the next six, but if you're lucky, they might ask you to help out with some other aspects of their survey - I did one dealing with unadressed mail, and earned £30 in Love2Shop vouchers.

Well, they are recruiting now, so if you are interested, click on the following link:

Sorry, no photos today - a challenge too far, I'm afraid !  But tomorrow, who knows ?  ;o)

1 comment:

  1. Thank you for the link, Allegra. I've just registered for the surveys. :) Hope things look up for you soon. Barbara