Saturday, January 23, 2010

A place to begin...

So, I begin my very first blog and my very first blog post with a confession . . . I am a list-aholic. I live by the list. I've never had the best short-term memory, but I am a quasi-perfectionist. Therefore, in order to avoid complete chaos in my life, I list. My lists are my security. My lists keep me sane. I know where my lists are located at all times. I typically have at least a dozen lists in progress at any given moment . . .
  • household tasks
  • weekly menus and grocery lists
  • multiple birthday and holiday planning lists
  • things to do this summer
  • things to do next summer
  • rules to live my life by
  • things to teach my kids
  • budgets and bills to pay
  • items to buy to re-decorate our guest bedroom
  • lists highlighting the amazing or wholly frustrating/exhausting things my kids did that day
  • personal improvement "to-do" lists
  • lists at work
  • lists of things to accomplish by the end of the day, the week, the month...
. . . oh god, that was just a list of my lists (help?!)

Now, before you judge, know that I come by this oh-so-endearing (just ask my husband) trait honestly. I descend from a long line of list makers -- of champion, in-your-face, take-no-prisoners list-makers. For the women in my family, making a list (and checking it twice) means loving your family well. In fact, one of my most prized possessions is a Christmas dinner list made by my dear Grandmother, who has since passed away. The dinner menu list was a common fixture at any family gathering, jotted down on a small scrap of paper, and kept right next to the sink. Before she sat down to dinner with the rest of the family, Grandma always scanned that scribbled list one last time. Even though the strawberry jello was already on the table, the list would remind Grandma to also set out the orange jello with whipped cream. That all-important list prevented - god forbid - the orange jello from accidentally getting left in the refrigerator and dear Mike having to suffer though strawberry . . . .

See what I mean?? List = love!!

With that in mind, it is only fitting that I begin my blog with a list. And, if I do say so myself, it is a damn good list!! (If you could see me now, I'm a little giddy just thinking about it . . . .)

Shortly after the new year, I stumbled on the "day zero project." Truly a tribute to list makers everywhere, participants are invited to create a list of 101 concrete goals and tasks to accomplish over the course of 1001 days. What a fabulous concept!! This site takes listing and new year's resolutions to a whole different level.

Now I've never been one to buy into the "1,000 things to do before you die" or "bucket list" thing. Too big picture for me. You just don't cross something off often enough. (Of course, every real list maker knows that crossing something off the list is a BIG part of the pay-off. That simple straight line across the words on the paper . . . Oooo, its just the fix we need for our goal-accomplishing jones!!)

But this "101 in 1001" list - - this was different. This was PERFECT! Concrete. Challenging, yet attainable. Something I could dig into everyday. Just the right size and the right motivation. Immediately, I was in!

So, for the past week, I've been working on my list of 101. It has gone through several drafts, and I am almost ready to post. It is very personal (and thereby, it is also quite the leap for me, considering I'm posting it publicly). But, I'm all for accountability too. The blog will keep me honest and motivated.

My list runs the gamut, from major undertakings, to mundane tasks. Regardless, all 101 are important to me, right where I am today. And, altogether, the list actually makes up a pretty good snapshot of my life.

As for the details, here is my one and only rule: once I post the list, there is no going back. No edits, no cut and paste, no updates. After I hit "publish," I'm committed to these 101 goals as my mine to accomplish. My intent is to keep track of my progress here, both with words and pictures to tell the story.

So here it is . . . my confession and my project - exposed! Grandma would be proud! (list to follow soon!)

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