Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Taking Life in Bite Sized Chunks

you want a bite ?, originally uploaded by Abdullah AL-Naser.

In gluten free bites that is.  My "Month of Gluten" or my "gluten gluttony" as Flossy-p put it (I wish I'd thought of that!), did indeed turn out to be my last.  Tests revealed that I am in fact coeliac so until they find a cure, that's the end of gluten for me.  It's funny though, after sulking for a day after getting the diagnosis, I feel alright about it.  It's something that's made me feel ill since my early teens and much worse in the last few years so it's a relief to find out that I now can have a lot of control over how I feel.

But I digress.

I've started making some changes to the way I work at home and it's making a huge difference.  

I haven't really talked about it, but a little while ago, we took a huge leap of faith.  With some savings still left in the bank to fall back on, The Man has become the stay-at-home dad and I, the breadwinner.  We've decided to really try to make a go of Kimono Reincarnate and to build it to support a family of three.  It's terribly exciting and awfully terrifying at the same time.  I feel honoured that my husband has put that much faith in me, but feel pressured to be the financial caretaker of the two people I love the most.

So now, I work from home with The Man and the little one here to keep me company and to serve as a sometimes welcome, sometimes not-so welcome distractions.  Working at home can be great and is most of the time, but I'm finding that I need more structure in my day and in my week.  And that's where the bite-sized bits from the title comes from.  

I've always had a to-do list beside me and I must say it's long, so very long.  For quite a while, I've had it organised in just two lists, the urgent and less urgent.  Everyday I'd plod my way through it, possibly completing a few of the huge tasks.  At the end of the day rather than feeling the sense of accomplishment in what I had achieved, I'd view the rest of the list and think of all that I didn't.  Well no more.  It's something so simple that I don't know why I haven't always been doing it, but now everyday, I look at the two lists and create a third.  One simply for that day.  One that I can get done and if it has been a little ambitious or other things have come up, there's only one or two that I miss.  Only one or two feels so much better than the nearly thirty that it used to be.

So now in the mornings I get up, have a healthy and yummy breakfast cooked by The Man, shower, get dressed and start my work day.  I have lunch and dinner with my loved ones and a few short pop-ins during the day.  I'm here if serious cuddles are needed and get to peek in to find out what all the giggling is about.  I try to get computery-adminy things done in the morning and get onto the business of making stuff in the afternoon and evening.  The hours are still long but you know what, I think with just a little hard work... maybe I can make this happen!

How about you?  Do you work from home?  Any tips you'd like to share?  Experiences?  


Anonymous said...

It sounds like you know what you're doing. I wish I could work at home. Unfortunately I have no special talent that would allow it. I think what you are doing and have done over the last couple of years has been truly admirable, Mel!

Sarah said...

Hi Mel, My husband Sean was diagnosed Coeliac just on 2 years ago and it has been an interesting learning process. It is great though that there are so many products out there these days. It really just takes the convenience out of some food but is definitley much healthier. We signed up with the QLD Coeliac society and their information has been really helpful. Cheers Sarah

flossy-p said...

Sorry to hear about the Coeliac diagnosis. But as you said, at least now you can take control of your wellbeing. That's not often an option. So best of luck.

And BEST of LUCK even more for your great business plans. I'm sure you will do so well, especially with all the great family support.

I work from home (so does Mr You) and we have ups and downs. Sometimes it's hard to get motivated, while most of the time we're both so busy we forget to clock off on weekends, and until late at night. We have to make special efforts to keep to sensible working hours, and do "weekendy" things on the weekends. But I find, like you, that starting the day off with admin things, then getting into creative things as a reward works well. I also find having a plan for what I'm going to do the following day helps to be more efficient.

Oh, how exciting. I'm quite proud of you! :)

p.s. Sorry not to meet you in Brissy the other weekend, but I did see that that weekend was packed with all sorts of markets around town, and knew everyone would be spread quite thin. Hope your market went very well!

CurlyPops said...

I think it's wonderful that you've been able to find that home/work/life balance for the family.
I do some work in a workplace and some work at home.
Working from home is difficult for me because others seem to think that I have the day off if I'm not physically at work. Maybe they think that things get sewn by the faries while I'm asleep?
The other thing is that I never switch off from work, because I'm constantly surrounded by it.

Kirra said...

Love your work Mel .. and you! You are doing it, and so much more, and I really take my hat off to you, in so many ways. Your life/work/approaches sound fabulous, and you are doing such a wonderful job. Just know that life, work and love are constant works in progress. Constant! Just remind yourself of that .. that everything is always changing. Perhaps if today was great - count your blessings and reflect on why, and if it wasn't, do the same.
So much good fortune and love to all you Gray Augustins!

Rafael's Mum said...

I am sorry to hear of your coeliac diagnosis. I am sure with time you will get used to a new way of eating but I know it is not easy so hope you manage soon. I just wanted to say best of luck with your venture. It is scary being the sole earner but it also means with your househusband there, you can devote more time and stay home! I do admire you and wish you all the best!

Red Hen (dette) said...

Oh well done! You are indeed lucky to have a loving hubby to support you in your venture. I'm not sure how I would go working from home I think I could get distracted very easily! Good luck with it all.

Baa-Me Kniits said...

Well done to you!! How wonderful to be able to have the support of your family doing something you love :-)
I wish you all the best!

Does this mean there will be more of your yummy products online?? :-)

Sandrine said...

I think you are doing a marvellous job Melanie!You are going through all your hurdles extremely well.
I like your to do list resolution, I shall try...I used to work for someone for years and find it way way easier, but sometimes easy is not what we are after :)
I would love to be able to rent a studio space I think this way, my brain will register work time and home time better :)

SomedaysSarah said...

Getting a diagnosis so that you can know what to do (or rather not do!) next must be a relief, despite the new burden of being more aware of what you eat. Good luck!

And good luck with your venture - very very exciting! I am amazed and constantly impressed by your creativity and I too look forward to seeing more of your offerings online for those of us not able to pop in to one of your markets!

As somebody who struggles with working (or rather studying) from home, I've found that having separate spaces are important for me - I'm not going to be able to focus when distractions are right there in front of me, and I'm not going to be able to rest and turn off when work is still sitting there. Do you have a separate space? A room with a door you can shut to get your work time and then close behind you at the end of the day?

And I'm a COMPULSIVE list maker who gets discouraged with my huge long lists too, I never seem to be able to scale back my expectations to manageable, however, and more often than not don't end up doing half of what I know I could do - let alone what is on my list. So kudos to you for making lists that are managable, that's an important skill!!

Mal said...

Major kudos on the move to independent designer!!


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