A Blur of Non-Consumer Productivity

by Katy on February 27, 2017 · 55 comments

The last week-and-a-half have been a blur for me. Not due to anything exciting like winning an Oscar for best picture and then immediately losing it, but because I’ve had the worst cold of the millennium. Coughing, wheezing, body aches and a general malaise that didn’t allow for any focused productive work.

And if you know me, you know that I pride myself on being a bit of a productivity junky. I write out long daily to-do lists, and although I rarely cross off every single thing, it’s still an impressive accomplishment by the end of the day. So it’s been driving me batty to lay about doing nothing and watching endless TV. (Okay, the first day was fun, I admit it.)

However, even though I’m not back to full power, I was finally able to get a few things done both yesterday and today.

  • I transplanted an indoor plant into a big glazed flowerpot that’s much bigger and more of a bold decor piece. Didn’t spend a penny on any part of this project, which is my favorite.
  • I listed an always-in-the-way vintage wheelbarrow in my Buy Nothing Group. (I used to plant lettuce in it.) It’s been probably four years since I’ve been able to muster even an ounce of enthusiasm for gardening, so it was a wonderful thing to send it off to a new home.
  • I cut open an ancient flat bed pillow to harvest the batting for a leather armchair that needed some extra stuffing. The seat cushion unzipped in the back, so this project was super easy and also cost zero-point-zero dollars. This hack worked perfectly, and the chair feels great again.
  • I filled not one but two huge yard debris cans with cut up branches from our tree which suffered badly during the last wind storm. Although it barely made a dent in the huge branch pile that currently fills my backyard patio, I’ll only finish this task like eating an elephant. One bite at a time.
  • I finished writing a Clark Howard article that I’ve repeatedly started and abandoned. Hard to write anything coherent when your head is swirling and swimming.

Do you consider yourself a “productivity junkie” like I do? Please share your thoughts and recent accomplishments in the comments section below.

Katy Wolk-Stanley

“Use it up, wear it out, make it do or do without.”

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{ 55 comments… read them below or add one }

Yvette from down under February 27, 2017 at 2:18 am

The days have been slightly cooler and the summer fruits are dropping from the trees. Tha parrots and cockatoos are having a feast, a swarm of dragon flies at twilight was amazing, and the local echidna came to visit and steal a drink from the dogs water bowl.
5 frugal things
1 bought a beautiful plant print in great frame for $3 replaced the glass for $5 at glaziers
2 . pears off tree in the garden have been poached, pickled or put into chutney.
3. Used up some free coffee cards at local cafe when out with friend
4. Baked last of the plums and put them in small containers in the freezer.
5. Discovered the coriander plants have gone to seed and these have sprouted in the garden bed, so I won’t have to purchase seedlings at all.
Autumn has begun and it’s a beautiful time of the year after the fierce heat. The mornings are crisp and the days warm, helps me to revive and gain energy for yard work and planting the next seasons vegetables in my garden.


Mand01 February 27, 2017 at 3:45 am

Unfortunately we are still in for some more of the fierce heat yet. I’m looking forward to April, when I can plant some bulbs and some garlic. Still, shouldn’t complain- I’m finally getting tomatoes and zucchinis!


Vickie February 27, 2017 at 9:24 am

Oh, Yvette, you are super productive. I love reading what you’ve put up food wise.
I had to look up “echidna” – cute! I learn something new everyday! 🙂


Su Mama February 27, 2017 at 5:13 pm

I met the spiny echidna in Australia years ago during a wonderful trip as a travel writer. If memory serves, it was curled up in a ball in the middle of the road, clearly convinced that we couldn’t see him or her! Lovely country — we were based in Adelaide, and went to Kangaroo Island — wow!


Yvette February 27, 2017 at 11:32 pm

Yes Sue, they will curl up in a ball if they feel threatened, and their quills will puncture car tyres if run over. This local echidna wanders in and out of the gardens, not even afraid of the dog. Australia is a land of contrasts, the weather so different in each region. The week we had a heat wave on the mainland there was snow in Tasmania. I am a country girl at heart even though I lived in the city until I was 30. My daughter lives in Portland Oregon and returns home in 6 weeks to visit me, she has decided to marry a lovely American man so I may get to visit the US in the coming year !!!


Amy K. February 27, 2017 at 3:21 am

I do like to be productive, and come up with cost-free hacks whenever possible. I never thought of your pillow idea, but I might try that! I’ve got several projects going at once and my house feels a little cluttered, which I hate. My entire coffee table and hallway is covered in piles of print photos from years ago. We always bought double prints (whyyyy?) and they were all mixed in a box with kid’s artwork, school photos and certificates. I’m trying to winnow all the pictures down to the best ones maybe do a scrapbook for each kid (or just digital everything…?), and digitize the rest. I’m hoping to finish this one bite at a time by the end of the week.


LisaC February 27, 2017 at 3:09 pm

I was restless one day last fall and took out four shoeboxes, one for each kid and one for me. I ruthlessly and quickly separated the photos, and threw away any where I couldn’t remember names. Then a couple of months later, when I had time, I bought small photo albums. It took me a few weekends, one for each (adult) child, but I made photo albums for each of them with comments. They really like them.


Amy K. February 27, 2017 at 4:15 pm

That’s a great method and I’m gravitating towards that. I cleared out two partially full albums I already owned and I’ll make those for each kid. 🙂


Val in MN February 27, 2017 at 3:24 am

I do consider myself a productivity junkie. But like you, it is a rare list that gets completely crossed off. And I believe it is because I put too much on it – it’s not realistic. My intentions are bigger than my energy and interest levels. I have recently been playing with a new list style of 3-5 must-do’s and then some bonus tasks. If the bonus tasks get done that’s great, if not no biggie. I do add an element of fun by listing a creative task to do that day to work on some type of art/craft/DIY project. All work and no play makes me frustrated.

Never knew I had so much to say about lists….


Mand01 February 27, 2017 at 3:42 am

– I cooked two weeks worth of school lunches for my daughter, along with biscuits (cookies) and a zucchini cake.
– my husband and I tidied up our front garden, mowed the lawn and restaked the tomatoes
– I returned the library books, extended one I’m still reading, and borrowed some new books
– I packed all the lunches the night before
– I organised my next lot of work trips and asked my sister to pick up my daughter from school on the night my husband can’t
– on my quest for more family fun time I booked us in for four events for the local arts fringe festival
– we also booked our first family holiday in three years. My kids are over the moon.


Vickie February 27, 2017 at 9:20 am

I love reading your accomplishments, knowing you’re in Summer while we’re in Winter makes me happy. It helps that feeling of hibernation go away!


Mand01 February 27, 2017 at 10:28 pm

Definitely Summer here! We have about ten days over 30 degrees C coming up!


Bee February 27, 2017 at 4:55 am

I am glad that you are on the mend. I do not like to feel unproductive either. I use a combination of routine and lists to keep things moving in the household.
There are many household chores that I don’t write down, because they are part of my daily routine. I get up, make my bed, read NCA while I eat my breakfast, empty the dishwasher, wash the dishes, and plan dinner ….

However, once that I am done, I sit down with my calender/notebook and plan the rest of my day. My notebook contains my master list which is quite long. I add to it constantly and usually update it every couple of weeks so it is legible. I divide it into categories: administrative (money matters and phone calls), garden, large projects, household and auto maintenance and personal items (send cards, volunteer projects). I make my daily to-do list from my calendar and this list adding anything that needs to be done today. For example, this morning I discovered that I need to go to the store for cat food, to make a loaf of quick bread from the extra-ripe bananas on the counter, pick up a book on hold at the library and pack something that I sold on eBay. These items will be combined w/ items items from my master list. Since I’ll be in the car, I will stop at the home store and buy an AC filter and 2 pieces of sod.

I know this sounds complex, but I discovered years ago that I couldn’t possibly do everything on my list in a single day. I would carry things forward day after day. By keeping a master list, I don’t forget it needs to be done and can schedule it when I have time, money or weather permits. I also end up with a list that can actually be completed.


Betty Winslow February 27, 2017 at 8:23 am

I love this – I read about it somewhere, called a “brain dump” – it’s also supposed to clear your mind, since you no longer have to try to remember dozens of things – they’re on the list!


Betty Winslow February 27, 2017 at 8:33 am

ummm…. blood work LOL


Bee February 27, 2017 at 9:28 am

Thank you for putting that so concisely. It is a brain dump. No need to remember it if it is written down.


Amy Jo February 27, 2017 at 5:05 am

I’m in recovery from being a productivity junkie partially because my body would revolt and become ill, forcing me to learn to balance work and rest.

I’m still a huge fan of to-do lists and now prefer the “Bullet Journal” style of to do list with journal and long-term planning & revelations which seems to support my greater intentions.

Keep up the great work!


Amanda February 27, 2017 at 6:10 am

I am absolutely a productivity junky! Glad to hear you are feeling better.

I did a bunch of Grant and fellowship applications this weekend.

I finished reading reviews for the books on my nineteenth century comps list. I Will finish capitalism today and hopefully chip away at a few on my last list. Comps is in two weeks!!! Ahhhhhh!!!

I updated our February budget and my husband and I wrote out our March budget. Our federal tax refund hit the checking account, and I immediately bounced it to our savings account.

My husband and I also over the weekend cleaned both houses, prepared lots of meals, washed loads of laundry, bathed children, wiped tears, read to the children, broke up fights, and generally non-stop parented.


Mrs. Picky Pincher February 27, 2017 at 6:11 am

Bravo for takin’ care of business! I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being a productivity junkie, but I’m saying that as a fellow productivity junkie. 😉 Here are a few productive things I’ve done lately:

1. I worked from home last Friday and was able to get more cleaning done around the house while on calls, etc. It was nice. 🙂

2. I got gas this morning before work. It was almost on empty, so I saved myself a huge hassle by paying an ounce of attention!

3. I planned out my week in my handy-dandy paper planner.

4. I baked sugar cookies with royal icing.

5. I used plenty of freebie coupons while celebrating my birthday over the weekend.


Mrs. Daisy February 27, 2017 at 6:34 am

Happy Birthday!!


Alexandra February 27, 2017 at 6:38 am

Bee, I think like you do. I don’t get discouraged at my giant list, I don’t mind carrying things forward as they simply can’t get done all in one day. But it keeps me from forgetting. So glad you said AC filter! I think that fell off my list a while ago (don’t like when that happens…)
I was sick yesterday, today mostly on the mend but not at work. Doing some cleaning, then resting. Whenever i’m sick I want to wash everything and start fresh. A shower for me, clean sheets and jammies, anything in the bathroom: towels, bathmats into the wash tub. I also wipe down computers, phones with alcohol. Run the dishwasher…
Now I’m doing an inventory of all in freezer, fridge and pantry. I have a lot of food in the house and am starting a list of menu ideas to implement things before they go to waste. When I put it all down on paper from my inventory, I see things in a different way. Wrote down I had shredded unsweetened coconut in freezer. Then saw a recipe for coconut crusted chicken. I would have skimmed right by that if I hadn’t made a note of it.
Hopefully tomorrow I’ll be super productive and will start implement the inventory and to do list. For now, just pulling them all together is enough after being sick.


Roberta February 27, 2017 at 7:04 am

I feel best when I’ve had a productive day. I used to keep a list, but lately I’ve just been floating around, doing things as they come up. And putting off tackling my taxes. 🙁
We’re working on decluttering around here, so I’ve been spending a lot of time on ebay, or photographing for ebay. We have a large plastic tote that was full of LEGOs we didn’t want, and now there are only about two sets left to assemble and photograph.
I almost finished a hat I’m knitting for my father-in-law. I had a very boring Saturday, attending a kid’s speech event and visiting with my sister, but I got a lot of work done.
Shopped, cooked minestrone for our church’s community lunch, served about 50 people in our community. Delivered leftovers to a woman who just broke her arm and will need surgery.

Thanks, Katy. I had been feeling pretty unaccomplished, but I’m feeling better now!


KJD509 February 27, 2017 at 8:41 am

Roberta, I’ve been floating lately too and it’s so hard to feel unaccomplished (even though, holy smokes, served lunch to 50 people?!? That’s the opposite of unaccomplished, I’d say.) But I’ve also found that some seasons just require a rest. About 3 weeks ago I said to myself, “Well, I guess this is where I am right now” and became one with the couch. Nobody starved, no health inspectors condemned the house, enough bills were paid that no services were turned off, and I’ve seen enough tv to last me a couple of years, at least. As a list junkie I was pretty sure I wouldn’t actually enjoy melting into the couch forever, and sure enough, by yesterday I felt up to the smallest type of list: a few post-it notes stuck to the mirror, so I can pull them off as the tasks are completed.

In the past I’d have been castigating myself the whole time for being unproductive, but this time I just thought, “eh, it won’t last forever,” which seems to have moved the whole malaise along more rapidly. Maybe that will work for you 🙂


Roberta February 27, 2017 at 2:31 pm

I’ll try to embrace the “season of rest.” It can be hard, though, when I feel I *should* be doing things!


cathy February 28, 2017 at 12:00 am

My teens are doing the same with all their old Lego sets, which are mainly Bionicles. Several months ago I floated the idea by them to put them together again, put them back in the packages (which we kept, along w/ intructions), and then we’ll photograph and list them for sale. We were all kinda shocked at how many there are…!


K D February 27, 2017 at 7:10 am

I’m glad you’re on the mend. I wonder if you had influenza, it seems to be going around.

I love being productive, most days. This weekend I deferred some tasks to spend more time hanging out with my husband. He wanted to go somewhere, despite stormy weather so we hit Goodwill for 1/2 price day. I bought some yarn, that I already have a purpose for, but that was it. We also stopped at the outlet store where I picked up a few bags of Annie’s cookies for an Easter basket. My husband treated himself to a new type of GF cereal.

I spent time cleaning up the yard.

I worked on taxes.

Discussed college graduation plans with daughter. Boy, do they try to sell them a lot of over-priced items with the cap & gown (a bargain @ $49.99, compared to the rest of the stuff).

Took walks to enjoy the outdoors and work at being healthy.


Annie February 27, 2017 at 7:13 am

1. Donated, gave away and recycled some kitchen items that have been taking up space and were barely used in the last three years. Now I can access my baking dishes without worrying they will fall on my head.
2. Made split pea soup with leftover cubed ham and added some leftover rice from Chinese food we ordered a few days ago. Had to buy some other ingredients, but the cost per serving is much cheaper than buying an individual soup.
3. Repaired the water damage on my wooden jewelry box, looks good as new now.
4. Finished all the odds and ends leftovers in the fridge as lunches this weekend. It’s always a good thing when we use up food instead of having to throw it out from spoilage.
5. We found organically raised chicken legs on sale really cheap and cooked them all up. There are at least three dinners worth for the two of us.


jennifer February 27, 2017 at 8:21 am

I wished I were a productivity junkie. I just don’t seem to have the energy or maybe I am lazy. I seem to have little spurts of productivity and that’s about it.

1. I picked up my free Friday download from Kroger which was a Lindt chocolate filled milk chocolate egg. The sensible frugal angel on my right shoulder said put it up for your kids for Easter but the irrational devil with the lack of self control on the left ate it.
2. I went to a couple stores to try on clothes for my upcoming trip. No luck finding anything but I did find a decent bra for $11. I repaired one of my bras but it was still ill-fitting so I threw it in the drawer. I always keep a couple old bras to use for parts.
3.My husband, kids, and I went to a local auction. I got a 16 peice set of Corelle
dinnerware for $6! They are $49 at Walmart and $52 on Amazon. I have been looking for Corelle dishes for quite a while so I was pretty happy with this find. The only other thing I got was 4 big packs of hair ties for 25 cents per pack. This was no brainer as my girls wear/lose these often. We had a lot of fun watching people bid on stuff. I couldn’t believe how much others were paying for things. I thought to myself maybe they don’t get to stores often to see how much things actually cost. Never would I pay $1.50 for a small tube of toothpaste.
4. I took my kids to 2 different birthday parties this weekend. One was a swimming party and one was at a bounce house. It was all day free fun for the kids other than the cost of a small gift for each birthday child. I keep a few small gifts on hand for when things like this come up and I brought a few drinks in my purse so very little was spent out of pocket.
5.My kids are kinda tired of breakfast regulars..oatmeal, cereal, etc. I had a few leftover dinner rolls that I needed to use so I put a couple slices of ham with cheese inside then put then in the broiler for a bit.They gobbled it up! Who says mornings are for breakfast food only? We frequently eat breakfast for dinner..better known as brinner at my house so I’m gonna do the same for breakfast sometimes.


Tammy Brackett February 27, 2017 at 5:26 pm

Oh my gosh. Your #1 made me laugh out loud!!!!!


Jennifer February 28, 2017 at 8:31 am

So true, though!


Betty Winslow February 27, 2017 at 8:32 am

1. Went to library today to pick up a book on hold, get a list of what needs to be returned, and copy two articles on the environment (my focus: water) for a focus group I’m attending tomorrow. I’ll have a light dinner there, spend 2 hrs. talking about the environment with the group, and get $100!
2. Mailed my GD’s birthday gift today – fuzzy socks, a chocolate bar in a color-it-yourself wrapper, and a cool “leather-bound” journal like one she had on her Pinterest “I want these” board, all on sale. I think it cost more to mail it than to buy the things!
3. Went to have bloorwork done today, chose to do it at my doctor’s new lab, so that they will for sure have the results by my appt. Wed. afternoon, unlike the hospital lab, which often takes a week or more to get the results there. Also, no waiting, since I went so early!
4. Having lunch with one of my SILs Friday, and she let me choose the restaurant, so I chose one that’s close, inexpensive but good, and has my son as a cook, so maybe I’ll see him for a minute.
5. Using up more of the odds and ends in frig/freezer – feels good!


janine February 27, 2017 at 8:42 am

Long lasting colds have certainly cut into my productivity – coughing as I type! Still, between the malaise of the election and two winter colds, I am willing myself to feel somewhat better and recognize the need to return to some sort of everyday life planning.
1. I usually menu plan for a week – have developed a flexible plan that accounts for unexpected leftovers and meals out.
2. Update my accounts so that I don’t run out of $$.
3. We have old vehicles which have needed major repairs this month – still cheaper than buying new, but feeling poorer.
4. Lists help me feel productive – with a good sized house, I have decided to clean and declutter one room every week – moving stuff, filling a box for GW etc.
5. Long range goal – going through a myriad of photos – also many, many duplicates, and getting them into some kind of order. Where did my family get the idea that if one photo was a good idea, seven copies were even better?


Amie February 27, 2017 at 6:31 pm

How big is your house? I have 21 rooms(was a old boarding house when mom and dad bought it 30 some years ago.


janine February 27, 2017 at 6:51 pm

Amie: NOT in that category. I always refer to it as the “track house of the 1920s”. 9 rooms not including bath plus basement and 3rd floor attic. Love old houses though –


Vickie February 27, 2017 at 8:59 am

Wow! Good job, Katy. I love that potted plant, BTW!
Yes, I guess I am a productivity junkie. I love making and marking off lists. I need a reminder of what I’ve accomplished and lists keep me motivated.
I make a huge list at the end of each month, since the last day of the month is payday for me. As my list dwindles, I’m able to see my accomplishments and keep track of my spending.
The things I don’t get accomplished truly bug me, so it keeps me accountable to myself. Especially if I have to move them to my next month’s list.


KJD509 February 27, 2017 at 8:59 am

1) Really, REALLY wanted Chinese food – specifically orange chicken. Found a recipe that didn’t require fancy ingredients and cooked it using all ingredients on hand except the oranges, which we were going to buy anyway to try to get some more vitamin C into the endlessly sniffling children. Zested one of the fresh oranges, and used the juice from the odd collection of dried up oranges taking space in the fruit bowl, including one still left from a Christmas stocking that for some reason never caught anyone’s fancy. Delicious!
2) Menu planned for the first time in 3 weeks. All meals from supplies on hand until Friday – we have dinner guests coming and will need to make a stop Thursday for fresh veggies. And probably booze.
3) Have stayed on schedule with my antibiotics, which is often hard for me to do. I don’t skip them on purpose, but so many antibiotics upset my stomach that I somehow “forget” to take them. It helps that they’re clearly making a difference.
4) Potted up some of the crocus and daffodil bulbs that didn’t get planted last fall. Even though it’s been well below freezing in the garage, they’ve begun to sprout. I’m hoping they’ll bloom – could really use a cheerful spot of color, and I’m afraid the squirrels may have dug up every last one of the 300 bulbs I planted in the yard.
5) Cooked some things ahead for lunches for the week and for a friend having surgery next week but – here comes the frugal fail part – maybe pushed a little too hard after this long spell of not feeling well and dropped an entire bowl of egg salad . . . into an open storage bin of flour. Had to throw out both the egg salad and probably 15 lbs of flour. What a mess! And now no egg salad for lunch today, which means buying overpriced soup at the company cafeteria. Not my finest moment 🙁


Caroline February 27, 2017 at 6:13 pm

Oh your #5! I am so sorry. That is a true ‘ygnits’ situation (pronounced yig-nits). My husband and his brother had a habit when they were kids of saying words backwards (On purpose. Who knows?) So when something spilled, a glass broke, etc. they would shout ygnits! Which is ‘stingy’ backwards. They moved to the US from S. Korea when they were 4 and 6 so even the ‘forwards’ word wasn’t always right. But they will be quite proud of me shouting to myself (silently) ygnits!! when I read your #5. Hope it helps-for some reason it always helps me. 🙂


KJD509 February 28, 2017 at 11:22 am

Ha! That’s a hilarious story. Alas, I was so mad and frustrated I didn’t even manage to swear about it, which usually helps.


lauren February 27, 2017 at 9:12 pm

SQUIRRELS!!!! ::shakes fist::


WilliamB February 28, 2017 at 7:11 am


Such a pity about #5 – that really hurts.


Ruby February 27, 2017 at 9:11 am

My family has been constantly sick since a few days before Christmas. Every time we get well, something new crops up. It has put a dent in my productivity, but I have tried to pick out a few tiny things that need to be done around the house and get them done, such as spot refinishing on a chair and cabinet corner the puppy chewed on and spiffing up the grout around the edges of our bathroom floor. Getting those little things done frees up space in my brain because my attention is not getting snagged by them every time I walk past the spot.

1. Despite being sick from allergies this weekend, the Mister and I made the short trip across the state line to shop at the Aldi and Tractor Supply in our neighboring low-sales tax state, which also happens to have amazingly low prices on dairy and eggs.
2. I made a double-size meal of spaghetti with a rich marinara sauce jazzed up with mushrooms and sausage. This should feed us well for the next three days, and then the leftovers will be plated up and frozen for my work lunches.
3. The Mister refilled all the window cleaner bottles (we keep one under every sink for general cleaning). He usually pays no attention to the cleaning supplies, so I was impressed.
4. We did the math standing in the aisle at Tractor Supply and concluded it is cheaper to keep ordering puppy pee pads online. Puppy is a mix of two breeds that are difficult to house train and slow to mature. She’s doing well, so we hope we won’t have to buy these many more months.
5. Did spend a little more on a new cat food, as our oldest kitty has lately not been very interested in eating. We suspect boredom, since he wants to lick our ice cream bowls, so it’s not a lack of appetite.


Kathy February 27, 2017 at 9:41 am

We were without electricity (upgrades to a power pole) last Thursday from 9 am to 8 pm. I used that time to dejunk drawers in kitchen, living room and dining room. Gathered up a box of broken jewelry and assorted buttons to send onto a gal who can use them to make jewelry.
Sold a few things on amazon and ebay last week so I got those out in the mail ASAP. Posted and sold a few items on FB garage sale pages and those are packed up and ready for pick up.


Teresa February 27, 2017 at 12:21 pm

Instead of making a whole meal plus cake to celebrate 2 birthdays, I made mini-cupcakes and served chips with home-made salsa. Saved myself a lot of stress, money and everyone had a good time anyway.

Re-purposed a frame I had on hand to frame our 2016 family Christmas picture that was printed free from Shutterfly.com. Gifted it to my 92-year-old mom who loved it.

Instead of buying new shoes, I started wearing an almost new pair that I had in my closet. They look and feel fine — I don’t know why I avoided wearing them in the first place!

Returned a pair of pants to Costco. They stretched out to giant size after one day. Tried not to feel guilty about wearing them for a day before returning.

Got a response from the manufacturer about my mixer that quit working a few weeks after the warranty was up. A new mixer is on it’s way, free of charge. Yay! It pays to save receipts and write letters.


Roberta February 27, 2017 at 2:35 pm

You wouldn’t know the pants were manufactured poorly if you hadn’t worn them, so it was necessary to wear them to find out. I’d let the guilt go. It’s not like you wore them for a month or a year before returning them!


Tracy February 27, 2017 at 2:28 pm

Hmm, my productivity activities have been:
1. Washed loads and loads of laundry (as I do every weekend)
2. Bought groceries
3. Tried a new and somewhat labor intensive recipe to take to a family dinner party yesterday
4. Cleaned two bathrooms
5. Found a large round wood tray at Goodwill to use for a fairly elaborate appetizer tray using ideas from pinterest for same family dinner party as # 3 above
(not frugal but fun) — tray had olives, small marinated mozzarella balls, cheddar cheese, brie cheese, 3 colors of grapes, salami, crackers, bread sticks, almonds, dried apricots — looked really pretty!


Danielle February 27, 2017 at 8:22 pm

I love those appetizer trays !!! Bet it was a hit!


susanna d February 27, 2017 at 3:05 pm

I do like being productive, but I’m not a list maker. Mainly because I don’t know from day to day what productive thing I’ll feel like doing. No worries; with the seemingly never completed fixer-upper of a house we have, I’ll never lack for things to accomplish. And honestly, if I ever did make a list, I’d probably lose it. I’m serious.

My productive activities tend to be influenced by the weather. Living in an area where winters definitely are longer than summers, if it’s nice out…my productivity goes outside. Last weekend was unseasonably warm, so we were very productive about moving firewood, cleaning up the mystery gifts the snow had hidden, putting down mulch, etc.

Then winter returned, so we headed back indoors. My latest burst of productivity involved the kitchen. As in, cleaning out every single blessed cabinet inside and out. And the thing I’m most proud of – deep cleaning the refrigerator beyond any deep cleaning that refrigerator has ever seen. Okay it’s only 3 years old, but I was getting obsessed by some crud that seemed impossible to remove. That is, until I took every drawer, shelf, what-have-you, apart. And even my husband – who has a much higher tolerance to mess than I do – was horrified by what was there. Or he might have been amazed or impressed; it’s hard to tell sometimes. We had no idea what was lurking between the glass (don’t worry, since I had to take everything apart, none of the ook ever came in contact with food).

And now I just have to stop myself from opening the refrigerator door a dozen more times and smiling at the squeaky clean inside.


WilliamB February 28, 2017 at 7:15 am

Susanna – the meat drawer in my fridge, has these little plastic buttresses that stick out from the side wall onto the inside floor. They’re necessary – without them the side wall would fall into the drawer – but little bits of much get caught in the corners. It drives me batty to see that, absolutely disproportionate to the actual problem. The fridge is clean and sanitary, but doesn’t look it because of that.


tonya February 27, 2017 at 3:37 pm

I keep a running to-do list on the Evernote app. I love the adrenaline rush of removing completed items! I guess that makes me a productivity junkie.


Chris February 27, 2017 at 6:07 pm

My husband came home from walking the dog to say there was a free dining room table (un-assembled and with leaves) down the street. We drove down and fit it into the Civic. It will need some work but we will do the work and re-sell it this summer.
We worked a catering job on Saturday night so made a nice wage for 5 hours of work – with free dinner.
Doing some piece work for my sister who is expanding her on line business – there will be some (TBD) pay out for me but also like doing the work and helping her out.
Our daughter made a decision not to buy into an annual weight loss program in order to get an Apple Watch – instead decided to save her $$ til she could buy it outright without any ongoing commitment – she gets it!!
Reading library books, cooking from home, going to the gym to make sure we get our reimbursement – and watching HGTV while on the treadmill – no cable for me!


Amie February 27, 2017 at 6:21 pm

With the assistance of my other half I realized that a white board would work best for me. I’ve only been using it a few days but I have a to do list that doesn’t use up a bunch of paper and it’s easy to clean off and add to. I got the idea from here though to add from that to my calendar to combine my need to write stuff down to keep from forgetting everything to putting it on my calendar(where I combine appts and such with stuff that just needs done). Yay productivity!


WilliamB February 28, 2017 at 7:23 am

Hello, my handle is WilliamB and I am a productivity junkie. My lists are long and I am comfortable with the idea that they’re not realistic. I’m also learning to be comfortable with the idea that the most important items rarely make it to the list; frex, walk the dog. If I’m feeling upset or angry, getting stuff done makes me feel better. Sometimes I even get something done as a potential cure for anticipatory insomnia (knowing I’ll have trouble sleeping, therefore get something done so I’ll feel accomplished, and therefore more relaxed, and therefore more likely to sleep).

My past weekend was like Katy’s – I spent much of my free time sacked out like a slug on the couch. Since the only problem is I’m a bit worn out, I kept trying to get up and get something done; as a result, I couldn’t even commit to slugging properly (say, watching a TV show). Stupid waste of time.

Yes, I just said that I didn’t waste time productively.

[Hangs head in shame.]


KJD509 February 28, 2017 at 11:24 am

Heh. That’s definitely the sign of a true productivity junkie . . .


VanessaKC March 1, 2017 at 6:55 pm

My productivity is based on my passion for the task. I tend to procrastinate the redundant tasks (like raking) and justify this by accomplishing many other things that I enjoy doing. It all gets done eventually though. For example, my basement needs to be cleaned but since there’s a VW swap meet coming up, I’m rather enjoying fixing, cleaning and refinishing parts instead.


auntiali March 1, 2017 at 9:02 pm

I suffer from lack of productivity. I keep an old envelope with a list of long term projects and one for my to do list. Sometimes I get two to do lists going and I will consolidate them. I always use the backs of old envelopes.


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