Do Your Minutes Have Purpose?

1,140 minutes. Every day. Mondays, Saturdays…doesn’t matter, all the same, despite how they feel.

Each day we get 1,140 minutes to use however we see fit.

Want to know what doesn’t get my time?

My hair. Oh, occasionally I’ll pull out the hair straightener for my already straight hair or use the curling iron to give it a little pizazz, but most days it’s a ponytail. Because I live in Georgia. And most days, in Georgia, whatever effort I put into my hair doesn’t make to lunchtime.

Make-up. (I rationalize this because I’d hate for my husband to wake up in the morning and not recognize me. Best to shoot for consistency, I believe.)

Twitter. Hate it. Too many mean people.

But why do I spend time wiping down kitchen countertops and putting away dishes? Why do I make the bed and vacuum the floor and mow the lawn and pick weeds?

And really, who’s going to know if I’ve taken a shower? (I mean if you’re ignoring social distancing mandates, then maybe, but other than that, probably not.)

Or what would happen if I didn’t–heaven forbid–shave my legs every single day?

What have I gained by investing time in any of these activities?

Am I wasting some of those 1,140 minutes?

Homemade meals require time. Baking with yeast takes forever. Training for a marathon (or a half marathon) is time consuming.

Why do I make doggy treats by grinding my own oat flour and cutting them out with a bone shaped cookie cutter when I could buy them online and have them shipped to my door with just a few clicks of a button?

And let’s think about gardening for a minute (don’t worry, you’ll still have 1,139). Now that’s a process with little immediate gratification. (Or in the case of my beets and brussels sprouts, NO gratification.)

All of these things take time. And effort. (And I’d say patience, but those of you who know me well may never recover enough to read any further.)

But there must be payoffs or I wouldn’t be investing my time, right?

Well, there is personal satisfaction, feelings of control, a sense of order, a happy belly, a happy dog, a t-shirt, fresh veggies.

And then there is the time spent writing. And thinking about writing. And rewriting.

Why write? Why devote time to something that is challenging? Why write when I struggle to organize my thoughts, to find the right words, to create sentences that are concise and meaningful?


I write because devoting time to a discipline is beneficial. Even when there is no end product. Even when there is no end product. Even when there is no end product. (As you can tell, I’m working on this. Word on the street is, if you hear/read something enough times you believe it’s true.)

Writing allows me to process my thoughts and feelings and opinions even if nobody reads what I write.

I write because writing is easier than speaking and I write because sometimes I don’t need to be heard.

And I write for selfish reasons…

I write because I hope that every once in a while I say something that will make people stop and think.

I write because I want others to know me.

I write because I want to be remembered…to feel valued.

I write because I’ve felt the impact of others’ words.

And not just the words written by published authors…

but a student’s narrative of her dad’s suicide after being charged with sexual abuse, and the rant of a student explaining what it was like to be on the spectrum, and the poem of a student addressing middle school cliques and exposing the facade behind the cliques.

So, how do you invest your 1,140 minutes?

Something to Eat

Cauliflower Bolognese

by Andy Baraghani (bon appetit)

Sarah (my son’s girlfriend) made this when they quarantined with us this past spring. We all raved about it, but for some reason (probably the age thing again), I forgot about it. Maybe it’s because I’ve been trying to make use of all the basil and tomatoes I’ve had on hand, and this pasta dish is basil and fresh tomato free. But when my garden produced a few cute little heads of cauliflower, I was reminded of this dish! If you are not a fan of cauliflower, no worries. You can’t taste it. If you are not a fan of mushrooms, you are out of luck. I happen to love mushrooms, so this was divine. We had it for dinner last week (and for leftovers for several days afterwards). I followed the recipe EXCEPT I used an entire tube of the concentrated tomato paste and I subbed kale (of course, I did) for the parsley.

Something to Read

I Feel Bad About My Neck and Other Thoughts on Being a Woman

by Nora Ephron

Funny lady that Nora Ephron. You may not recognize the name, but she wrote When Harry Met Sally…, and Sleepless in Seattle, You’ve Got Mail, and Julie & Julia. This book ranked right up there with the screenplays. It was a quick read and I laughed (outloud) throughout the whole book. Of course, if you are not female and middle age’ish’ you might need someone to explain why it’s so funny.

Something to Ponder

“The key is in not spending time, but in investing it.”

Stephen R. Covey

As always, I appreciate you taking the time to read my words and I’d love to hear back from you! Enjoy your weekend!

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