Of Mice and Men ~ by Sam

You know what they say about the best-laid plans of mice and men, right?  For the record, they “gang aft agley.”  No, really.  That’s it.  Did you know that?  For years, I said this phrase without knowing how it ended, ‘though I did have a general sense of the meaning.  Don’t believe me?  Read this: 


See?  If that didn’t help much, try this:  


Anyway, my plans (i.e., “The Master Plan) gang aft agley, to be sure.  I had such grand plans, too!  SDespite my struggles, I stand by the idea of making plans, no matter how agley they are prone to gang (yes, I realize I have probably mangled the grammar here.  Sorry, I don’t speak fluent 1785).  Things, you might say, are not going exactly as planned.  Below, you will see the original outline of the “Master Plan” to get our home organized.  It’s going…well…it’s going, that’s for sure (or is it “gang?”  I am certain it is somewhat “agley,” to say the least.  I think.)

Here is the original plan, as I posted it, way back in January:

January:  paper, mail, household files, etc.
February: closets
March:  bathrooms
April: kitchen 
May: laundry room
June: bar
July: craft/school supplies
August: party room
September: sewing supplies/fabric
October: garage (maybe…if we feel like tackling this)
November: photographs/scrapbooks
December: we’ll be too busy partying 

(Ambitious, non?)

Now, let’s review what has actually happened:

* January:  paper, mail, household files, etc. – YES!  I actually did this…or…well, I did a LOT of if.  The kids and Shane did some, too, and, while it isn’t what I would call “finished” (is this job EVER finished), there have been vast improvements in both the volume of paper mess in our home, and how we manage it.  So that’s good.

*February: closets – Pretty much done.  Shane remodeled our bedroom closet and Justice’s.  I whipped the linen closet and game cupboard into shape, and helped Kaia and Hallie organize their closets and do a little more unpacking.  I am going to call this one a success.  (Yay!)

*March:  bathrooms – Ha.  That’s funny.  See, in March, I don’t know what happened.  That’s not entirely true.  I do know what happened.  Many, many things happened, in fact.  Hallie turned 14, and we went to a carnival one weekend.  Another weekend, we had out of town guests (MIL and FIL in town to celebrate MIL’s birthday), which was great fun.  Kaia was Girl Scout Cookie boothing and working super hard to try to get enough donations to send 100 boxes of cookies to troops overseas (she is currently up to 90, and has until the end of the month to get the rest!).  Justice was…um… Justice?  What were you doing in March?  Ah, yes. SATs, composing music, taking an online health course and an online driver’s ed course…oh, and this weekend, she goes on retreat with her orchestra.  Oh, and the church youth band that Hallie and Justice’ play with performed one weekend.  And Kaia won a scholarship for private music instruction.  

You know what?  March has been busy.  Then, on the heels of some torrential rain, the weather was PERFECT, so I did some work in the yard.  Then, one day, I organized the cupboards in the bar, because their lack of organization was driving me mad.  This week, I started painting the party room, and planning ways to rearrange it, so it will better suit our needs. It wasn’t on the list for March, but someone painted the entire interior of our house the world’s most depressing shade of flat beige before we moved in, and I simply cannot live that way.  Basically, I am a couple of steps ahead of the Plan (see, because Party Room is listed as our August project, and bar was supposed to happen in June)…I mean, except for that part where I didn’t even touch the bathrooms, so I am also behind.  (Another lie.  I TOUCHED them.  I do clean my bathrooms.  I just didn’t paint and organize, like I thought I would.)

Recently, I looked back at the plan, and thought, “Oh, crud.  Bathrooms.  Forgot about them.”  A glance at future months revealed that April is supposed to be my kitchen organization month.  Yeah, right!  We will be spending about 10 days in Maryland during April, right on the heels of Shane’s gig at NAB in Vegas.  In short, Shane and I will not be home at the same time for about half of April.  Now, because the kitchen organization is going to involve installation of shelves and hardware, I do not foresee this happening while we are not both here to do the work.  I think it’s more work than one person can do.  We’ll see.  

So, I was feeling rather defeated, until I realized several important facts:

1. None of this is set in stone
2. We are looking at a repipe for much of the house, so it would be silly to paint, hang shelves, etc., in bathrooms before that is done.  So, it really makes sense to push that project.  We can probably take care of our bathroom, since I don’t think it is part of the repipe.  We’ll see.
3. We have gotten a jump on some projects that were scheduled for later, and our yard is looking lovely.
4. It’s not just us ~ “the best-laid schemes of mice and men gang aft agley.”  It’s been happening since 1785, at least.    

You know what?  Maybe I’ll organize the sewing area in April.  Maybe, I’ll remove the months, and just keep this as a list I can check off as we get things accomplished.  

Well, however we decide to handle it, at least I managed to do this:Image

And, one day, maybe, we’ll paint the rest of the room.  And put up shelves.  And finish unpacking.  

No matter what, the plan for December remains the same: 

December: we’ll be too busy partying.

So, there.  



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