Has a book ever changed your life?
First, let me just say that the Bible has been THE ultimate life changing book for me. So, what I'm talking about here is the title in second place:
Pictured here on the left. Cheaper by the Dozen.
Have you ever read this one? No, not the movie, the BOOK. Have you ever cracked this one open?
Oh, well let me just tell ya about it.
Other than Scripture, this book has been THE book that has completely altered my life. No kidding. I can't quite remember when I read it.....hmmmm, maybe 6th grade? I don't remember. And I don't even think I read it more than once. Well, maybe twice, but that's about it. But, amazingly, I remember quite a bit about the stories in it.
From the picture you can tell that the main focus of the book is on a family with A LOT of kids. 12 to be exact (hence the title). And I already know what you're thinking.....
No. I don't have a big family because of "Cheaper by the Dozen". We're not having 12 kids! Yikes!
Actually, what I got out of the book is how the father manages life. And I dare say that this is the main focus of the entire story:
He LIVED for efficiency.
Everything he did, he tried to do it quickly and with the least amount of work possible. No, he was no slouch, or a lazy guy trying to get out of hard work (how can anyone do that with 12 kids??). But he knew that there must be a faster way to get the job done, and he worked at it until he got it right. He was positively fanatical about efficiency. It changed the way everything was done in his house: from brushing teeth, to eating dinner, there had to be a quicker, better way of getting it done.
And now, this is how my brain works.
I am constantly thinking, "Does anything else have to go in that room before I walk in there?", "If I start this project first, then that one in the middle, I'll get them both done at the same time.", "There's got to be a faster way to do this!" All because of that one book.
One story I remember from it is how the Dad figured out how everyone should take a shower (bath?). You take the soap in one hand and make a pass on the opposite side, switch hands, make one more pass one the remaining side, and voila! you're done in 3 minutes. Now, don't quote me, it's been a long time, but that's the gist of it. Amazing. High efficiency. I LOVE IT.
My poor husband doesn't know what to do with me sometimes. I just live to be efficient, and he.....well, it's not a top priority for him. I'll be like, "OK, if you do that, then turn around and put that there, and hold the baby while you scrub this, then it'll all get done in the next five minutes." All the while, he's going "Huh? Put what where and scrub what kid? I only got two hands!"
Sigh. Why can't everyone just want to do things quickly?
Not to mention, it's sometimes very hard for me to live down here in the "Land of Take Your Time". I hear stories of friends building a house and the contractors just come whenever they want, just whenever they feel like it. What?!?! No way, Jose. I just couldn't deal with that. For me it's GO GO GO. I'd be like, "You need to paint? Fine. Here you go. No sheetrock you say? Fine. Paint this sheetrock on the floor--you can do it before they hang it. Let's just get it done!"
Silly, I know. But I can't help it anymore. It's just a part of who I am. I actually have to TELL myself to slow down and not fuss over making 2 trips. Crazy, huh?
All because of a book I read when I was a kid. Go figure!