Dec 18

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Punctuality Challenge – Day 9 – The Squirrel Went Berserk


We depart from the regularly scheduled post to inform you of a Griswold Family Christmas moment.

My husband and I had a chat about punctuality last night and we were discussing my challenges being a semi-stay at home mom, meaning I occasionally work outside the home (about 4-5 days a month) and blog from home. My spouse has the exact same routine M-F every week. He rarely gets interrupted from his routine as he is usually ready and out the door before the kiddos arouse. On the other hand, my daily schedule has varied greatly over the last 12 years. As children were added to our family, my work schedule has changed dramatically. When we began homeschooling, our schedule changed again. I have difficulty adhering to a rigid schedule since we have so many variables in our days and weeks. I have noticed that I drastically underestimate the amount of time it takes me to get myself and the kids ready to go somewhere. I don’t have the benefit of daily practice in getting everyone out the door, so I realized that I needed to figure out how long it REALLY takes to get out the door. My hubby allows about 45 minutes or so of margin in his morning routine every day. He rarely needs this margin, he just uses the spare time to read the news online, eat breakfast and just have a relaxed morning.


This morning was an exception to his usual morning routine. He entered our bathroom expecting to shower as normal, opened the shower curtain and suddenly a rodent leaped from the shower rod into the shower stall. He didn’t have his contacts in so he was unsure what this unidentified flying furry object may be. He woke me calmly and said, “Come see what is in the bathroom.” DSCN1467 The squirrel was crouched in a ball in the corner of the bathroom, scared half to death. He had him trapped in the tiny little room with the toilet. We attempted to put the cat in the room with the squirrel to see if he would take care of it for us. After a few moments, we opened the door and the animals were in opposite corners of the room and the cat slipped past us sheepishly. Next, I suggested a net the boys keep in the garage for “critter captures”. By this time Promethius had aroused and he was eagerly helping dad come up with a plan. They caught the animal and placed him in a butterfly habitat we had used to hatch cocoons.

We googled sugar gliders because the hubs noticed the large eyes on the animal and thought he was something DSCN1469different from a common squirrel. Turns out we had a flying squirrel on our hands, er in our hands.  We researched the range and habitat of the animal and also looked at images of flying squirrels. The wonder of the internet. All this occurred before 7am. Needless to say, my husbands morning routine went out the window. He opted out of his normal hot breakfast and hit the gas station on the way to work. He was a little shaken and frazzled after the fright of sharing the shower with a critter, but he made it on time to work despite his creature encounter. I learned a valuable lesson from him this morning. Margin in your schedule saves you a lot of stress.

You never know what you will face when you get up in the morning. I never expected a Griswold Family Christmas moment in a million years, yet this Christmas will go down as the year the “squirrel went berserk”. Times like these are the spice of life. This challenge has been harder than I realized at the start. I am only 9 days into the challenge and I feel like my eyes have been opened to some areas where I need improvement, but I don’t feel like I am seeing big results yet. Old habits are hard to break I guess. In the book 28 Days to Timeliness, the challenge for day 9 was to start timing yourself for about 3 weeks every time you start getting ready to go somewhere. Include all the interruptions that happen and keep a log of this. By the end of the three weeks you should have a good idea how long it really takes you to get ready with all the unexpected interruptions that take place on occasion. Giving myself margin is what I hope will make the difference in my daily life and allow me to feel more relaxed and in control of my schedule, even when life throws me a few Griswold moments.


Permanent link to this article: http://conversaving.com/2012/12/18/punctuality-challenge-day-9-the-squirrel-went-berserk/


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  1. Susan @Homeschooling Hearts & Minds

    Yes, having a cushion is definitely a stress-saver—I wish I was better at having a cushion. ;0)

  2. Jennifer

    I am working on it!

  3. Aunt Kay

    I think a squirrel in the house would be considered a good reason to be late for something! Lol!

  4. Davonne Parks

    Hahaaa, OOHHH I can’t even imagine finding a squirrel in the bathroom! What great homeschool learning that day :)

    I hope you’re doing well on your Timeliness – now that it’s been a year since you’ve done this challenge, I’m interested in hearing about long-term progress. Please e-mail me if you’d like to share! (And it’s okay if you’re not perfectly on time – one of my new year’s resolutions is to start being on time again – Here’s a link to my resolution list to prove it :) http://davonneparks.com/living-intentionally-in-2014-new-years-resolutions-part-one/ )

  1. 5 Days of Multi-Level Homeschooling – Where Do I Start? | Conversaving

    […] Science – During the elementary years, science is about exploration and discovery. We aren’t worried about a scope and sequence as much as exposing our kids to as much in the natural world as possible. By doing this, I hope to excite my kids about science and develop a love for learning. We have caught caterpillars from our parsley plants and placed them in a butterfly habitat and watched them form cocoons and transform into butterflies. We have caught a flying squirrel in our house and let it go back into the wild. (Yes, this really happened and you can read about it here. […]

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