Avoid Shirking Work

by Christie Perkins

In the winter we get a home grown ice skating rink by my front door. Thank you north facing lot. You do have to bring your own ice skates but if you want to do pirouettes or figure 8’s the entertainment is basically free. Well, unless you slip and have to wear permanent doughnuts to all future gathering places.


So you know how you most people are inclined to believe what they find on the internet? Well. Well, I found a piece of information that I thought would be a fabulous idea for de-greasing the ice rink. It’s called ashes.

Yeah. Wood burning ashes. I decided it would be a great idea to cut the work. You know, the “easy” way out. That’s what I thought it would do anyway.

I was so excited to find a use for this useless item. I dropped what I was doing and rushed up the stairs with bucket in tow. Yeah, baby. The excitement caught hold of me and I forgot to close the door. (Hm? I wonder where the kids picked up this trick. Anyway.)

So in case you didn’t know… ashes are fluffy and lighter than air (or appear to be). But I didn’t think about that as I was throwing it into the brisk swirly twirl air.

Boosh! It all came rushing through the front door. And I had just mopped the floor. Seriously? Brilliant move Perkins.

So here I was dumping ashes all over the place and you should see my face (despite the realization I increased my work). It’s working. I can see ice with holes and I did a little jig on it to see if it would work.


There’s traction and everything (might be from the glumps of ash piles on the ice- come to think of it anything would work in the quantities of ash I used- rice, sugar, potato peelings, solidified grease globs, whatever). But still, it worked.

But, it wasn’t long before it melted. And now there was ash slushies for sale. Dirty ash slushies welcomed guests now. Nice (but not really).

So all the work I was trying to avoid was now more complicated. Sweep again. Mop again. And though the kids were walking safely across the ice skating rink they were now tracking in slushy gushie stuff. Ashy streaked footprints glided across my floor more.

So much for less work.

And though it worked for traction it ended up being a royal pain. Sometimes cutting the work… just doesn’t work.


Lesson Learned

Since Southern Utah has seasonal multiple personalities it snowed last week along with beautiful sprink-like weather. At first I was frustrated… I just washed the kid cargo 2 days prior. It was money in the wind like ashes through the front door.

(And believe me, I know all about that.)

But. I was going to be smart about work this time. I wasn’t going to create more work but I was going to face the work. Yes, I could just ignore the snow but if I did I might end up feeding my insurance company instead. And I didn’t really want that because they are getting kind of chunky anyway. I could wait until my husband got home but it would have morphed into ice by that time.

So I pulled out the handy dandy shovel and got to work.

I had to do what I didn’t want to do: shovel the walks. Not that it is hard it’s just not my favorite thing to do. And let’s face it I wanted to avoid the ash slushies from the last time. I had things I wanted to do and shoveling the snow was not one of them. So I grabbed my shovel and scraped away.

(And you’re thinking about how lame my life must that I am blogging about shoveling snow… hold tight.)


The Perks of Doing Work You Don’t Want To Do

It’s 25 degrees. Could be worse. But it is calm, not a breeze from a sneeze is even blowing. But, it’s beautiful. The sky is crystal blue and the sun feels warm on my arms. And suddenly, instead of hating what I’m doing I’m loving it. I find an excuse to shovel the sidewalks even though I know it will melt by this afternoon (because that was never on the agenda in the first place). But it is so pretty I can’t help but want to be there .

And then I hear the calming lullaby of a bird.

A bird? Wow. In the snow? I didn’t even know they liked snow. It’s singing the song I feel in my heart. I stop shoveling because it’s grinding and blinding out the bird’s words. Man, it’s enjoying the day as much as me. I listen for awhile but it doesn’t stop singing.

And suddenly this horrible job of shoveling is turning into the highlight of my day. I am so happy flinging snow here and there. I want to fling the snow everywhere. I seriously started thinking about shoveling the grass.

Yeah, I’m not kidding.

But, pride settles in. I avoid being the topic of cockeyed looks and dinner table topics. I skip shoveling the snow off my grass… but I really want to. So instead, I sit out on the back step and listen for the bird but the moment is gone and the wind picks up and bites my nose.

Well. There goes.

So. What am I really trying to say here?

So if you ever have things you just don’t want to do, don’t take the shortcut. It never ends up quite the way you imagine it and can often lead to more work (remember the ash scenario- teach it to your kids. It’s fine, you can make fun of me). Get to work and see the beauty of it instead, it’s really not that bad. And if you do it when you really don’t want to do it but you smile and jump in, that’s when the birds chime in.

What work are you shirking today? Some shortcuts just can’t and shouldn’t be taken. Tell me what sings in your heart when you just get to work and get it done. And good luck getting the kids to see your vision of work and warming up to ash slushies.

Add the perk of work to your day!


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One thought on “Avoid Shirking Work

  1. You are so awesome, it is so inspiring to hear your words and nature, I love nature and birds of course!! Love you girl you made my day!!

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