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Checking the "Box"

It's October now and we're easing into this fall schedule I love so much. Leaves are turning, routines are becoming just that ... routine. The Holidays are approaching ... and I'm doing something I've developed quite an aptitude for ... making lists.

I didn't use to make lists. You know, way back when ... certainly before this 40's decade. Well, to be honest, I guess I did make lists, I just didn't write them down. They were all neatly organized in my head, instant recall. Now ... my excuse is our busy schedule, and we'll just keep it at that. Smile.

Grocery Lists, To Do Lists, Honey Do Lists, Appointment Lists, Weekly Goals List, Gift Lists, Chore Lists ... Bucket Lists. Truly, there is a list for everyone. For me ... I have lists of lists. No, that's not exactly right. I have notebooks for my lists.

But, I enjoy it. I love always having something to look forward to. I never have to get, say, bored. There is always something more on "the list" to do before I could even contemplate boredom. My creative mind is always whirling with ideas whether they be decorating for the holidays, novel ideas, storyline edits, recipe lists, knitting ideas or even travel ideas. I simply have to write them down.

Making lists is a "good" thing. Right? Of course.

I recently had a conversation with my dad where I bristled a little. After a recent visit ... I think he noticed all my notebooks of lists (especially the Christmas Baking List which consists of 32 variety of cookies) he did what all good fathers do, he had a "conversation" with me.

Remember those? Except I like to be on the giving end instead of the receiving end.

It went something like this: "If the summation of your life to is check something off a list, you aren't really living." And ... "When your old and your children have grown, they will never remember what you checked off your list, they will never remember how organized your home was or, say, how many variety of cookies you baked for Christmas one year; they will remember the things you did together, the memories you shared, the experiences you had."

Balance. Reality check. (Parent's are good for those -- even in your forties).

I have worked hard on my lists. They're all about accomplishing something. Where I had gone astray ... was the end result. I found myself distracted by the "process" instead of the goal. (I think someone recently wrote a book about that). And the goal has always been, for me, to give my family the best of what I have to give. Period. The process needs to support the goal, not the other way around.

Thanks, dad. I think I have it now. 

And ... I can move on with my day. I've blogged ... "check"!

Dedication: To my fellow listmakers.

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