Three hours later, with a trunkful of office supplies and one less
overdue DVD in my car, I walk into my house muttering my to-do list
under my breath. Linsay either doesn't notice or takes for granted
that I'm crazy. She's wrapped a bunch of packages for shipping;
organized my CDs and DVDs; made appointments with the carpet
cleaner, family doctor, and dentist; and unloaded and reloaded the
dishwasher. Next on her list: Take magazines and catalogs to the
recycling center. I gather those catalogs and magazines, write out
directions to my daughter's school and to the post office, and send
her off. My plan: Spend the quiet time writing. Instead, I use 40
minutes to clean out the drawers in my sideboard and distribute the
Barbie shoes, pot holders, screwdrivers, photographs, Legos, and
crayons to their proper homes.
Now, finally, seven hours after Linsay arrived, I'm writing this. I
give myself an F for outsourcing today. I spent more time getting
ready to delegate than I did doing actual work. Every messy
surface or drawer distracted me. Would I get better at it if Linsay
worked for me regularly? I rationalize my poor performance this
way: If I had regular help, no directions to school or post office
would be necessary. To-dos wouldn't stack up. My helper would know
me and the house, so she'd know which jobs to tackle.
Now I'm looking out the window every 30 seconds to see if Linsay's
back with my daughter.
Did Katharine Hepburn and Gerald go through an awkward,
unproductive getting-to-know-you period? Maybe she forgot to tell
him to carry her coat to the car or took her own notes for five
minutes before remembering she'd hired help. Maybe burning toast
filled her kitchen with smoke too.
Somehow I doubt it.
LivingOrder organizing and
Rate: $75 an hour residential