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“Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone.” Lin Yutang

Have you ever noticed that you can never get everything done? I mean there’s always one more towel to fold, one more dish to wash, one more shirt to hang up, or one more piece of furniture to dust. And the truth is, there always will be.

The thing about housework is that it has to be repeated. It’s never actually finished. We’ll always have bathrooms to clean, and beds to make. Such is life. We all go through times when we’re organized…and times when we’re not. But sometimes we have to just shrug our shoulders and say, “You know what? It will all be here tomorrow. Today I’m taking the kids to the park, or going to lunch with my husband, or I’m going shopping.”

Yes, there is an art to leaving things undone. Babies will not stay babies forever, and later we will wish for one more hug, or one more day in the park, or one more bedtime story. Husbands have a way of heading toward heaven sometimes sooner than wives, and what widow would not give all that she had to spend one more day with the love of her life? Yes, the unmade beds can wait, and the bathtubs and toilets too!

So this past week (from Wednesday through Sunday) I have practiced the “noble art of leaving things undone.” My husband and I have been taking a stay home vacation. It only requires him (a busy lawyer) to be out of the office for three business days. (And I have even allowed him about 2 hours a day to sign papers or make phone calls.) Have I been tempted to spend precious time vacuuming or dusting? NO!!! And these have been wonderful days!

Since we live in a tourist town, we decided to act like tourists-(sort of.) The first day we went out to breakfast, and casually read the paper over coffee. We went to a thrift store (one of my favorite activities), and then we went home to sit in our comfy chairs, and watch a movie. Then I started supper, and headed down to the flea market, where I have a Victorian collectibles booth to play in, while he went to the office for a couple of hours. We met back at the house, ate, watched a little tv, and back to our cozy chairs to read for a couple of hours.

The next day we took a day trip to a nearby beach town, (stopping on the way at…you guessed it…a gigantic thrift store! LOL!) Then we had lunch at a home cooking cafe, and I shopped at 3 antique stores, while he headed over to talk with some of the people that work with him on adoptions in this area. (You know men-they aren’t much for shopping.) We enjoyed the scenery on the way home, and then we hit those wonderful chairs again for a little reading time. (We just purchased them a few months ago.)

The next day we had to go over to the nursing home for a “care plan” meeting for my mom, who has been there temporarily for therapy, since breaking her right foot and left leg. When she gets to go home depends on the doctor’s report next Thursday. We’ll know lots more then. But all in all it was a good meeting. She has settled down a good bit, and has worked very hard during her physical therapy sessions.

From there, we had lunch in a home cooking cafe in our town (also a beach town), and then home to our chairs for a couple of hours. We split up again for awhile, and met back at the house for an easy supper of grilled cheese sandwiches and soup.

Today, I finally got to sleep in (yay!) and we went to our favorite restaurant in Baytowne Wharf. It’s called the Marlin Grill. But they have the best steaks on earth! I kid you not! If you are ever in Destin, Florida-check them out. You will NOT be disappointed.

(I was disappointed, however, to find that my favorite Tea Shop (Magnolia and Ivy) had gone out of business. So sad. It had great gifts and tea accessories. But we walked over to the waterfront, and sat for a few minutes, and then headed to Ross-(my second favorite store to T.J. Maxx).

Tomorrow is Sunday, and we plan to rest and wind down. This is the first year in a long time that we didn’t go the North Carolina Mountains (my second favorite place on earth.) But we have had so many crises in the family, that we were just too worn out to make the trip this time. So we opted for two vacations like this. One this month, and one in August.

I can’t wait till the next one! There is a certain amount of stress that goes with traveling-packing, flying or driving, not sleeping well, etc. And I guess we eliminated all that with our staycation (as my teenage daughter calls it.) We managed to combine venturing out, with actually resting, and it has been delightful! It seemed much longer than it actually was. (Also I spent 5 days away in my favorite nearby (nothing fancy) motel the week before, so I was already in a vacation frame of mind. I have never needed a vacation more!

Being the primary caregiver for my elderly, widowed mom is a full time job, and we have had our share of medical crises lately. I desperately needed a break. I can see now how important it is for a caregiver to get away from time to time. It is not a luxury…it is a necessity. The burn out level is high, and everyone needs a chance to escape now and then.

So I have practiced the “noble art of leaving things undone” for the past few days, and I’m loving it. It will all be there waiting for me on Monday…


One Trackback/Pingback

  1. By Bookmarks about Happiness on 18 Dec 2008 at 9:30 am

    […] – bookmarked by 6 members originally found by berberich on 2008-11-10 Leaving Things Undone – bookmarked by 5 members […]

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