Friday, December 09, 2005

Weekend Wonderings – or maybe I'll wait ....

Periodically updated in green
So, I didn't get my snow day. Which means that I didn't clean my room and do all my grading and all the other work I needed to do. Yeah, right. Like I woulda done it anyway.

See, here's my problem. Procrastinitis.

It doesn't help when people like HeyJules constantly post all sorts of turbo-thought-provoking thoughts. Or JaneDark points out good avoidance tactics like Kingdom of Loathing, "an RPG where you fight cans of tomatoes, and possessed stalks of asparagus." And then there was I think the first post of eb's that I commented on, of 20 Things to Keep You Busy. (And then trying to figure out how I came across eb in the first place eats up a little more time.)

It's not like I don't have my own collection of world-wide-web-time-wasters.

Not to mention reading the paper or looking for resources for my classes.

Plus, that non-existent snow day.

Oh, and then all the blog-hopping that's possible. You know, you read comments on one of your "regular" blogs, then you click on the profile of another commenter, check out their blog, follow some links from them, and let the cycle continue.

Anything to avoid grading.

Or lesson-planning.

Or cleaning my room.

Or cleaning the bathroom.

Or anything else, for that matter.

But, this weekend it must be done. Yes, I know, I say that every weekend. But I really mean it this time!!!

So ... the question for the week:
What is your most-favored time-waster?
Your modus operandi of avoidance?
Your most-propelled-to procrastination practice?

Or, perhaps ....
Your most avoided task?
Although, the question I really should be asking ....
How you do get yourself to DO IT ANYWAY???
(the avoided assignment, NOT the method of misapplying your mind)

See, a BIG part of my problem is the fact that I tend to only accomplish things when I don't want to be doing something else. For example, my room is an absolute pit of despair, and has been for quite some time now. As such, it has driven me absolutely batty. Do I clean it? No. But this weekend, now that I have school looming over my head ... I guarantee you that my room will finally find some order by Monday morning.

Rewarding myself when I finish the task doesn't help, because I know I'll do whatever the reward is anyway. The whole "If I get this much done in an hour, then I can watch Law & Order" doesn't fly, because if it's Law & Order time, I'm gonna be watching. Self-discipline is not always my strong suit.

I have found that external accountability helps sometimes, which is why I'm thinking I might take the lead of WhatNow, RussianViolets, and other various types (that I've just wasted more time looking for) who post some sense of a to-do list, to be updated as necessary, so I'm thinking I might give that a shot.

And here's (at least some of) what's gotta get done.
••• Create wrap-up notes/handouts for two classes
••• Create study guides for two classes
••• 90-minutes/class sub plans for Tuesday (sophomore retreat)
••• (Ideally) create exams for two classes
••• Develop (and post) rubric for Gospel project
••• Empty the ever-expanding-bag-o'stuff by grading: It's at least sorted & organized now
»»»»» Welfare video reaction
»»»»» Chapters three and four review questions
»»»»» Chapters three and four wrap-up work
»»»»» Jesus' questions & your answers Thus concludes my sophomore grading ... until their next assignment, anyway. But on to the juniors!
»»»»» Retold parables These are, if I may say so myself, some of the most amazing writing since their Prodigal Son papers! Such good kids have I!
»»»»» Highlighting quizzes ever-so-slowly progressing along
»»»»» Gospel of John vs. synoptics another 1/2 inch of paper outta the way. Course, this round took longer because it's amazing the differences some kids were able to discover by just reading the passion narratives. Unfortunately for them (and fortunately for me), kids today aren't too into the book-thing. Which means, if they want some "additional assistance" on an assignment, they turn to the very same Google that I can turn to. Didn't take too excessively long to find out where the work really came from. But, then I had to dig back through the pile a few more time, since things on the website were sounding just a little too familiar to me. Ultimate results? 4 sites, 5 papers (at least). Then there are the two papers that I know came from somewhere, but I'm thinking I should only spend so much time on the search. Something about the synoptics "never [having] any passage that suggested what the emotions of Jesus were" and/or that "in this unique Gospel, John puts forth the idea that Jesus is the light that overcomes darkness, meaning that whoever believes in Jesus will overcome darkness" and that instead of parables, Jesus focuses on teaching about relationships. Not that any of those are bad ideas, but the phrasing seems kinda off, especially considering the other ones that have been tracked down. Sigh.
»»»»» Gospel logs the most formidable 2 inches of paper I've ever seen. Bonus shipment of Snowman Soup to whoever can explain what the heck I was smoking when I thought having each one of my 83 kids read either Matthew or Luke in its entirety, and answer several questions on every three chapters. Questions like what happened, who's involved, what do you think, etc. A nice idea, in theory, but then what was I doubly smoking when I decided that I had to read through all of them at the same time? Gets a little old ..... BUT, it's done. And now to Church!
••• Post grades and missing work

Home/Non-school (or at least, non-paycheck-riding-on-it):
••• Order medicine
••• Make snowman soup
••• Figure out student Christmas ... whatever
••• "Faculty Buddy" gift
••• Write scripture reflection for
Monastery website
••• Monastery/Loovul Christmas plans
••• Christmas stuff for home folks
••• Christmas card innards (and outtards) very cool poem written, to be posted once schoolwork is done and I'm ready to do cards
••• Read about "monastic dress" for discussion (which involves finding papers about monastic dress) and now that that's settled ... until the next discussion ... and the community discussion ...
••• Grocery shopping Should I find it horribly unfair that I'm ADDING to the list more than crossing off?
••• Deliver recycling one of the many unknown/unexpected/unplanned tasks
••• Unclogging a toilet another one of the unplanned projects, which took probably seventeen-thousand times longer than it would've taken any of you, since I have this deep-seated terror of all things toilet-trouble-related
••• Clean room as good as it's gonna get, anyway! At least I have a chair, and desk, and bigger bits of floor than before!
••• OK, and I'm gonna stop this part of the list here, b/c it's too skeery!

So if you see me hanging out here or on your blog and the list isn't cleared out? By all means, please please PLEASE climb your way through these fiber-optic cables and rip my hands off the keyboard.

Thank you.


Blogger sonoftheprodigal said...

i need this piece of article to accomplish my things to do which have piled three storeys high by now.

thanks for dropping by.

i promise to come back from time to time.

12/10/2005 9:46 AM  
Blogger the tentmaker said...

One of the great things about growing up is I don't have to clean my room if I don't want to and I don't have to feel guilty about it either.

My favorite procrastinator is the same as one you said: I read one of my favorite blogs and the comments. I chase those rabbits from link to link. The good thing about that is that i get good ideas for my sermons (which usually don't get finished until 10:59 on Sunday morning.)

You know, I have gone into the pulpit totally unprepared and God has taken that moment and produced some of my best sermons.

"I am convinced that [even procrastination] cannot separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus." Romans 8

12/10/2005 9:55 AM  
Blogger AveMaria1 said...

Hey thanks for stopping by my blog. Even though you have a massive amount of schoolwair to get done, it was awesome to hear from ya.
Sorry about not getting a snow day, I'd be feelin' a little snarly too.
One thing I have learned from all my nun buddies is that they never have enough time in the day. Juggling prayer life and ministry is hard! Didn't they teach you this in Convent Lifestyles 101?
(it's ajoke). But seriously, I have noticed this trend among my nun friends. Just look forward to the Summer when, hopefully things will settle down.
It was good to see a post from you on my blog. Hope you are enjoying this Blessed Advent Season and that your room gets cleaned sometime this week! ~Lauren

12/10/2005 11:58 AM  
Blogger AveMaria1 said...

Don't ask me who taught me to spell. In my previous post, I meant "schoolWORK". Maybe it was a Freudian slip, who knows.
Peace ~Lauren

12/10/2005 12:00 PM  
Blogger andrea said...

What is snowman soup? As a Southern Californian I'm afraid I'm probably missing the main ingredient, but I'm curious anyway. :)

12/10/2005 12:12 PM  
Blogger Steph said...

Really, I'm not reading these comments, but, for Andrea's sake .... Snowman Soup is my most excellent hot chocolate mix. Not that I'm biased or anything like that, but if Jeana ever comes on here, she'll definitely second my opinion ... as do all the folks who got some from me last Christmas.

If you (or whoever) let me know who and where you are and ask really really really nicely, I might even find it within myself to send along a sample. Course, that's if I get to that part of my to-do list!

12/10/2005 12:45 PM  
Blogger HeyJules said...

Okay Steph...I'm gonna go check my site meter and YOU better not be on it!

Sorry about the thought provoking post. Tomorrow will probably just be a silly meme if that makes it any better.

: )

12/10/2005 5:35 PM  
Anonymous jeana said...

Yes, I will second the motion that Snowman Soup is indeed first rate. Steph also makes a yummy cinnamon coffee flavored version, which is my personal favorite.

12/11/2005 3:25 PM  
Anonymous Kathy Fair said...

I think I have the perfect solution for procrastination--and I definitely have the procrastination credentials to boast about it. It took us 30 years to finish our book: "The Holly Wreath Man." My husband Christopher Scanlan and I wrote this book based on a newspaper story he wrote back in '75 about the once thriving holly wreath business that put food on the table and gifts under the tree for farmers during the winter.
This is how we overcame our procrastination (it's based on material from David Allen's book "Getting things Done.")

1. Why? List all the reasons why you want to do whatever it is that you are trying to accomplish.

2. What? Envision what your task would look like if it was wildly successful (my room is clean, nothing's on the floor, everything is in its place, there's no clutter, it's like a picture in a magazine etc.-- ours was "The Holly Wreath Man" is syndicated in papers across the country, "The Holly Wreath Man" is a hardcover book and "The Holly Wreath Man" is a movie.

3. How? Brainstorm what it'll take to accomplish your goal--this is where you randomly write down every idea in your head.

4. When? Now list in order all the steps from number 3 in the order that you think they need to done.

5. Where? This is the first step on your list. It's my favorite because it gives you a beginning--the thing that you do immediately to set your project in motion towards completion.

This really works. Because when you get stuck you just start over with step one to get yourself back on track. Read below to see the outcome to our "The Holly Wreath Man" project.

Our story first appeared as a serial novel in over 50 papers across the country and has been optioned for a TV movie. Now it's in hard cover published by Andrews McMeel. It's a nostalgic story set in 1962 during the Cuban Missile crisis. Right now it's appearing in "The St. Petersburg Times."
There you can catch up on all the chapters (there are 25--it runs a chapter a day from the 1st of December to Christmas day).
Here is how they announced it: The St. Petersburg Times is publishing The Holly Wreath Man, a fictional story about the tide of progress and the power of love that binds families together.
It is also available through our website or on and in various Barnes & Nobles as well as Barnes & Noble online. We hope you enjoy it, and good luck on all your projects that you've procrastinated on.

Kathy Fair

12/11/2005 3:57 PM  
Blogger AveMaria1 said...

Your list is diminishing!

12/11/2005 6:54 PM  
Blogger BrightStar said...

your list is gigantic! Good luck with it.

thanks for hopping over to read my blog! It's nice to meet you.

12/12/2005 8:03 AM  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

It's very easy to procrastinate on the web. I'm doing it right now. I should be painting, like artistically painting, like Van Gogh type painting but am I doing that? Why no. I'm telling you how I should be doing it but now that I'm telling you that, I think I just might go do it...unless I get distracted by the paper.

This is why God created deadlines. I imagine he set 7 days as the limit for world creation because otherwise, where's the motivation to finish?

12/12/2005 3:43 PM  
Blogger Lucy said...

KoL is cool, but it takes too much long-term strategising for me. My taste in procrastination tools runs more to incrementally different puzzles and games, which is why I just cursed you on my blog for introducing me to griddlers :P Spider solitaire is still a favourite, too.
I'm amazed how much you got done, though. Maybe I should try that public accountability thing...

12/12/2005 7:12 PM  
Blogger AveMaria1 said...


You may get lucky as far as getting your snow day. Us folks in Chicago are expecting 7-10 inches tomorrow...Some of that is bound to hit Indiana...
Peace ~Lauren

12/13/2005 4:57 PM  

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