Doing more with less…


One of the reasons I have less time... the privilege of watching my son play varsity basketball his senior year. (He wears #22.)
One of the reasons I have less time… the privilege of watching my son play varsity basketball his senior year. (He wears #22.)

Today I am doing more with less time, less space, and, definitely, less patience. At the risk of whining, may I just say, “Enough already! Christmas break, I need you!”

Somehow my body has failed me these past weeks, actually requiring sleep. Instead of my 2 or 3 a.m. bladder/brain wake-up calls, I have slept until my 4:30 alarm — and on two occasions slept even longer when the alarm clock failed to sound. Gone have been my mornings of solitude and silence in which I could write blog posts. My days have gotten shorter because of sleep, and, though I have managed to write daily, my posts have gotten later and not necessarily better. Because it’s the Christmas and varsity basketball seasons (my son is playing), I have had to do more with less time. Sigh.

I also have had to deal with less space. On a typical school day, I have a classroom I call my own and an office I share with a colleague. That is because I play multiple roles on campus — teacher extraordinaire, communications guru, and webmaster. (All descriptions I coined myself, mind you.) Lately, however, my classroom has become the shared room — because of school assemblies and other activities forcing other teachers to retreat from their rooms and into mine. It’s fine, of course, because I have an office I call an office — except that more often it is called a conference room. Let’s just say it can be a bit frustrating, and, yes, I should be counting blessings instead of minutes and square feet of solitude.

But the less time and less space is definitely lending itself to less patience on my part. This I must own because it is something I can control. I think. Or I can go to Someone who can help me with it. The issue with less time has clearly disrupted your life — as you have had to wait longer for my blog posts to appear. (Trust me, I’m sorry.) Less morning time has forced me to write with an audience behind my back, the TV on at my side, and sporadic conversation directed at me to which I must respond. My frustration with the less space has oozed into my blog posts to the extent that the office/conference room conundrum topped the list of our administration meeting today (because other members of the admin team are reading it). The solution? We’ll address this next year — but in the meantime, we will try to defer some of the conferences to the guidance office, which features a rocking chair and a basket of candy. (Hmmm…. note to self: Maybe you should offer to move to the guidance office and share the rocker and the candy.)

All of this to say, after tomorrow, I will have more time, no need of space, and, at least, fewer agendas taxing my patience.

Strange as it may sound, what came to my mind as I contemplated this post was a plaque my mother conveniently had hanging in front of the kitchen sink. It bore this message (which I type here by pure memory, as it is so ingrained in me):

Thank God for dirty dishes,

They have a tale to tell.

While other folks go hungry,

We’re eating very well.

With home and health and happiness,

We shouldn’t want to fuss,

For by this stack of evidence,

God’s very good to us.

Granted, it has nothing to do with less time, less space, and less patience, but it does remind me that I can change my perspective. Instead of resenting my lack of time and space and becoming impatient, I can consider the facts that I am sleeping better, I am working a job I love in an economy in which numerous others are not working, and I do have Christmas break beginning at 4 p.m. tomorrow.

I have been able to do more with less because I have been blessed with more.


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