Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Saving Time on the Front End

One of the biggest things I'm learning as a parent is the value of preventive maintenance. Not on my car, but everywhere. In particular, cleaning up messes.

Yesterday, I fed our son prunes, peas, and applesauce for lunch. Not only did it get all over him, but on his bib and onto the high chair try. It did not help that, just as I fed him a spoonful of prunes, he reared his little head back and, "Sneeze!" This sent the food all over the tray and his bib. I was happy that it didn't get on me.

After the feeding ended, I wiped his mouth, took of his bib, got him out of the chair, and went on to the next activity. During his nap, I looked at the tray. It was covered in prunes that had since dried. On the counter was his bib, also covered. I brought them both over to the sink and proceeded to scrub. If I'd only wiped them up immediately after the prune tornado, it would have been easy. Now, I had to spend five good minutes scrubbing. And all of you parents know, five minutes of scrubbing is a long time and could be much better spent.

Now I truly understand Benjamin Franklin's saying, "A stitch, in time, saves nine."

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