How I Squandered the (sort-of) Last Day of Summer: A Cautionary Tale

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Tomorrow, teachers go back to school in my district.  Here’s what I should have done today: relaxed in the hammock with a margarita and a good book, taken my sweet doggy on a long walk, enjoyed a leisurely bike ride, went out to lunch with a friend — anything besides what I did.

This is the cautionary tale of a summer day squandered.

For a teacher, August is like one long Sunday night.  All month long, there is that nagging feeling that precious free time is slipping away.  A reasonable person would choose to savor the last few days of freedom, but on Friday, I realized that there was one thing still my summer project to-do list: paint the bathroom.  A reasonable person would have shrugged it off, but being the slave-to-a-to-do list person I am, I decided to pull everything out of the bathroom and soldier on with painting.  After all, I had a Plan and Plans should not be messed with.

This morning, I got up early. The Plan was that I was going to finish the painting in the early afternoon, shoot some photos and write a chirpy blog post about the bathroom mini-makeover.

Nothing went according to the Plan. The harder I worked to get done, the madder I got that I had chosen to take on this endless project so close to the end of summer.  The madder I got, the messier I painted.  The messier I painted, the harder I had to work to clean up after myself.  Not even the Les Mis soundtrack could lift my spirits.

To add insult to injury, when I was about 2/3 of the way done (FINALLY!), I stepped back to admire my work and realized something fantastic.  In the daylight, the lovely oatmeal-colored paint I picked was almost exactly the same shade of the existing paint.  I swear it looks totally different in the can.  On the walls, not so much!

I felt totally defeated.

Here’s what the bathroom looks like right now:


Yep, those are flecks of paint on the floor.  They’re everywhere.  They’re not going to be fun to scrape up.


I don’t think I’ll be having a bath tonight.  Actually, the the shower is unusable right now too.  Maybe I’ll shower with the garden hose.


More paint on the floor!  Goody!

Here’s the thing: I spent the day on a painting rampage because of an arbitrary deadline I set for myself when I should have been savoring the last few moments of the summer with people I love.  Sometimes, there are more important things in life than the to-do list.  Summer doesn’t last forever.  I squandered the last day. Squandered.  Don’t be me!  Savor, don’t squander!

I still have a lot of work to finish in the bathroom, but you know what?  Chris will be home from football practice in 10 minutes and the next couple of days are going to be crazy. Rather than insisting that he help me finish my goal (which he would do because he’s just that nice), I’m going to throw out the to-do list and spend the evening doing the things that I should have been doing all day.

The bathroom isn’t going anywhere.


Copyright Best Coast Living, 2015.  Cannot be reproduced without express permission from the author.

Washi tape design by Teacher Karma.


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