For the last seven months I’ve been talking a lot about what babies gotta have. Awesome toys, adorable clothes, safe bottles, wonderful books and more. But if Mama is so stressed out and exhausted that she routinely burns the fish sticks, puts her underwear on inside out, and locks herself out of the house, as the old saying goes, ain’t nobody happy.
If there was one thing I could give all you hardworking Mamas out there, stay at home, work at home, work outside the home, or otherwise, it would be time. We’re all too busy. We’re all too stressed out. Every night it seems we find ourselves at the close of the day, exhausted, frazzled, our new jeans covered in applesauce, spit-up and Boudrueax’s Butt Paste and only half of our to-do lists done! Wouldn’t it be grand to have just a wee bit of help?
Fortunately, people with clearer heads than mine have gotten wind of this dilemma and rallied their considerable organizational skills to help you get your life in check. If you’re a NYC area Mama like me, Julie Morgenstern Enterprises can show up at your home or office to help! As they state on their website, they organize people not stuff! They offer office organization, home organization, time management coaching, and (I totally love this) teen organization!
Even better, Nokia is hosting an event with Julie Morgenstern herself next Tuesday, October 21st from 6 pm to 8 pm at the Nokia Flagship store here in New York! There will be cocktails and hors d’oeuvres (cause you know Mama’s gotta have a drink and a mini quiche!) on the first floor, a family friendly fingerfood atmosphere on the second floor, and even a spectacular giveaway of a Nokia E71 Smartphone (now all you Non-NYC moms don’t go away mad…keep reading because there’s something fantastic in it for all of us!). Julie Morgenstern will be on hand to offer time management tips and tools, and you’ll be surrounded by awesome Nokia gadgets designed to help you streamline your crazy life using technology. (Now if they could just invent a phone that would feed the cat and clean oatmeal off the ceiling fan we’d really be in business.) If you’re a Windy City Mama, a similar event is being held by Nokia at the Chicago Flagship Store on October 23rd and all Babies Gotta Have It readers are invited to both events! I’m going to be there on Tuesday and I’d love to see you too! If you would like to attend either event email me at email@example.com and I’ll hook you up!
For you Mamas in the country and the burbs, Julie is a prolific writer (heck if she’s writing for Oprah and Martha she’s gotta be doing something right) who offers all kinds of books and products to help you maintain that tricky balance between work and play. Check them out!
And you know who else has stuff designed to do that…? Nokia!
So for all you loyal Mamas who’ve been hanging out with me and my gal for the last seven months, it’s time for you to get a little somethin’ somethin’ for yourself. Nokia is graciously offering a Nokia E71 Smartphone to a lucky Babies Gotta Have It reader. Check it out on the Nokia website. This device offers constant email access, and a “Dual Mode” button allows for you to have two home screens–one for work and one for play. You can customize each with separate email accounts, calendars and more. This is a nearly $500 amazingly cool tricked-out phone. I am not joking. Awesome, right?
TO ENTER THE GIVEAWAY:
1. To enter, just leave a comment on this post telling us all what you’d do with one extra hour a day. (click on the word “Comments” below and scroll all the way down to the bottom to access form) I really want you to win. It’s that easy!
***Want an extra chance to win? Blog or twitter about this giveaway, leave me an additional comment letting me know you did (please include the url), and I’ll put your name in the hat twice! Not a blogger? Email a friend about the giveaway, cc me in the message at firstname.lastname@example.org (I promise I will not spam you or your friends – cross my heart) and you’ll have two entries. Make sure you include your email address with your entry.***
Giveaway open to those with U.S. addresses. Giveaway begins on Friday October 17h and ends on Wednesday October 29th at midnight Eastern Standard Time. On Thursday October 30th, my baby girl will draw the winning name and I’ll email you immediately. It’s not a terribly scientific drawing, but I assure you it could not be more random. Thanks for entering!
Update! So I went to this event last night with my friend Karen the photographer, and let me say, it was really really cool. First of all the Nokia store is just awesome. Inviting, hip, colorful…reminded me a bit of 10 Forward from “Star Trek The Next Generation” though I’m fairly certain they were going more for 21st century ultra high tech rather than mid-90s semi-lame sci fi. Still I felt cool and wished Whoopi Goldberg were there serving me some drink that smoked. The Nokia people were lovely, the Nokia products were amazing, and if you have never had a grilled cheese sandwich with truffle oil, I strongly urge you to find some cute guy in a tux with a fancy serving tray to give you one…or fourteen as the case may be. And Julie Morgenstern really had some perceptive things to say!
Since you missed it, here’s my take home version of Julie Morgenstern’s thoughts on technology and time management!
- Multitasking is a fallacy. We are least productive when we try to do several things at once. Do one thing at a time and do it fully. Whether it be work or play, schedule your time into “buckets of activity” (even Julie made the analogy to preschool and arts & crafts), commit your attention and care entirely to that pursuit, and (particularly if you’re at work) use your cell phone alarm to let you know it’s time to move on to the next task. This is true for work and play. Create “edges” and maintain them.
- Do not check your email at home in the morning before you leave for work. Be fully at home, and fully present with the people or animals you live with.
- Give yourself permission not to check your email for the first hour you’re at work. I know you’re all like “what you talking about Willis?” But Julie stands by this one. Don’t let your email rule you. Rule your email. Use that first hour to be creative and proactive. You set the agenda for your day; don’t let your entire day be lived in reaction to what has arrived in your inbox.
- And for all you Moms who are breastfeeding, laughing quietly to yourselves, and thinking “schedule my time! yeah right. that’s a good one,” Julie has thoughts for us as well. So yeah, maybe 90% of your time is subject to the needs of others. Julie poses the question, what do you do with that other 10% Maybe you find yourself with 40 minutes during an afternoon nap. Again, use the time consciously and fully to recharge yourself. Don’t just idly surf the web, flip channels or answer emails because you do so reflexively out of habit. Instead, make a thoughtful choice to use your time in that way. Cuz hey, that’s how I spend nap time. But Julie encourages us to be mindful of that time. Use it how you like, but don’t let it get away without making a real choice as to what YOU want to do.
So not to get all Oprah on you…but hey, this gal has been on Oprah so it’s not entirely out there. But I really left with a renewed commitment to use my time mindfully (I also left with a rice krispie treat shaped like a flip flop but that’s another post). So get out your dry erase boards and start scheduling your time into buckets of activity! Or use your new phone to do it for you!