I just finished reading today's FlyLady essay on the power of 15 minutes. I will never, ever get over the power of 15 minutes! You never could have told me 6 years ago that 15 minutes could make a difference in my house, but I am here to tell you it will.
I think my mother-in-law knows this, but she's never told me so in so many words. She and my father-in-law are missionaries in Jamaica. We have never lived near them during our marriage, so I haven't gotten to know her the way many women get to know their mothers-in-law. We get along very well, and I know her personality very well, but I never knew her housekeeping style till about 7 years ago. My husband was ordained that year, and my in-laws came into the US to attend his ordination. She kept telling me, "Let's at least get this much done" whenever we'd be working together in the kitchen. She begins getting supper ready right after lunch. If she has a few minutes before going out, and we don't have time to wash all the dishes, she washes up the pots and pans and says, "There! At least that will be done when we get back." I had never thought to take these approximately 15-minute bursts of time and use them to my advantage. If I had an extra 15 minutes, I'd sit down and read or something else I wanted to do. My mother-in-law began to teach me then that taking 15 minutes here and there will greatly ease your work load later on, when the pressure's on, and you can keep things in good order by taking 15 minutes here and there. My MIL is not a perfect housekeeper, but her home is orderly and efficient for her needs. She knows the power of 15 minutes!