“. . . therefore I quote.” Memarie Lane and Kathy Peel

I read, therefore I quote. It’s what I do.

I’ve been quoting books, but this gem from Memarie Lane was just too good to pass over just because it didn’t come bound or with an ISBN number:

“A day for me is like a Rubix Cube. Several patterns in several dimensions that have to be solved in tandem. Lining up one pattern may discombobulate another, so I have to keep it all in balance. Hopefully, by the end of the day I’ll have it all sorted out, though the next morning all that work will be undone again.”

Marie Du Jour
by Memarie Lane

Thinking about my main job these days – not my consulting, but my main job as a Family Manager, I have Kathy Peel to thank for the way I view it and the consistent awareness that what I do has value. My quote today is the crux of Kathy’s (and subsequently my) philosophy on the role of Family Manager.

Although there are days when I miserably fail to meet my goals (and I mean MISERABLY), I start over again the next day with a clean slate. Every little change adds up. It was much more difficult to consistently pair my goals with action when my kids were toddlers and preschoolers. There’s so much “reaction” parenting sometimes. You have to react to something you didn’t expect, like a golf ball through the fish tank. (That’s another post.) Now that my kids are taking more ownership of their own lives, washing their own hair and wiping their own . . . It’s easier.

So, although I don’t always meet them, these words have been the cornerstone for my goals for many, many years:

“I wrote down all of my chores and responsibilities – whether they had to do with our house, clothing, children, relatives, bank accounts, pantry, schools, vacations, furniture, holidays, etc., (the list was very long) – and studied them. Then I tried to place each item on the list into a general department, similar to those of a business. I wanted to see if any patterns emerged. The did. As a matter of fact, seven distinct departments emerged that made a lot of sense to me as a Family Manager.

Time – managing time and schedules – getting the right people to the right places at the right time – so that our household can run smoothly. (UPDATED VERSION INCLUDES: with the right equipment.)

  • Goals: To see each day, each hour, each minute as a gift, not to be irresponsibly “spent,” but “used” in a purposeful way. Learn to use small blocks of time to accomplish big tasks. To stop wasting time with meaningless activities. To think and plan ahead so as to eliminate as much chaos and stress as possible from our daily life.

Food: efficiently, economically and creatively meeting the daily food and nutritional needs of my family.

  • Goals: To provide tasty, nutritious meals for our family. And even if the food isn’t gourmet, to make mealtimes especially enjoyable times when we share laughter, tears, dreams, ideas – our worlds, as a family.

Home & Property: overseeing the maintenance and care of all our tangible assets, including personal belongings, the house, and its surroundings.

  • Goals: To appreciate and take care of all of our belongings in such a way that we can enjoy them as much as possible and they will last as long as possible. To create, through the decor and furnishings of our home, a warm and welcoming atmosphere for family and friends.

Finances – managing budgets, bill-paying and a host of other money issues.

  • Goals: To be alert for practical ways every day to live by the motto “Make as much as you can, save as much as you can, give as much as you can.” To live within our budget and spend less than we make.

Special Projects – coordinating large and small projects—birthdays, holidays, vacations, garage sales, family reunions—that fall outside the normal family routine.

  • Goals: To plan occasions and events to celebrate the special moments of life, and create and carry on family traditions. To put making memories high on our priority list. To make sure I (and others) aren’t so overwhelmed with trying to do it right we don’t have any fun.

Family Members and Friends – dealing with family life and relationships, and acting as a teacher, nurse, counselor, mediator, and social chairman. (UPDATED VERSION INCLUDES: child rearing, education, marriage, friends, neighbors, and aging parents.)

  • Goals: To always remember that relationships are the most important thing in life, that people are more important than projects. To help those closest to me develop their full potential by providing opportunities for their growth and valuing them as individuals. To be, to the best of my ability, a good wife, mother, daughter, sister, relative, friend, and neighbor.

Personal Management – growing and caring for myself physically, emotionally, intellectually, and spiritually. (I figured that if I’m going to manage everything else, I’ve got to manage myself.)

  • Goals: To strive to develop my full potential as a woman. To be an avid reader and a lifelong learner, to exercise regularly and eat wisely, to schedule times for personal recreation and refreshment, to grow in my knowledge of God. To take good care of myself and remind myself regularly of my value as a human being.”

The Family Manager
by Kathy Peel


“. . . therefore I quote” Thursday: If you have a quote to share from something you’ve read recently, feel free to comment and/or include a link to your own “quote” post.

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