No, I’m not talking about Santa’s list. At this point, that’s the least of my worries. I’ve got way too many other lists to worry about right now – I’ve got no time to give the ol’ man in a red suit any thought.

I’m planning 2 very different trips in the next three weeks, and my brain is moving into operation overload. What needs to be done ahead of time? What needs to be packed? What errands do I still have to run? What do I have to organize for the people I’m responsible for? What am I forgetting to communicate? Okay, there’s just no way around it. Time to plug some organization into my normally disorganized brain. Yup, I’m makin’ lists.

First it’s the Christmas trip to visit family. Let’s see… what is there to think of? Gotta bring presents, clothes, sleeping bags, air mattress, stuff to entertain the kids in the car, that little magical machine that Marcel sleeps with that ensures both him AND I get a decent night’s sleep (it’s called a cpap machine – he’s got sleep apnea – if we forget that machine, the whole household won’t sleep for a week!), skates, a camera, and about a hundred other things that probably won’t fit in the trunk of the car. But first I have to finish the Christmas shopping, make sure the girls have appropriate clothes to wear at their Christmas concert, make sure there’s enough clean laundry for everyone to pack in their suitcases, attend a family Christmas party, and… oh I’ve got a headache already.

Then, a few days after our return, it will be time to pack for Ethiopia. Have I picked up my malaria pills yet? No. What about sunscreen? Nope. Packed gifts for our local hosts? Some. Bought extra memory cards for the camera? Yup – check that off the list. Oh but before I start packing there’s a press release to write, more coordination with the travel agent, an orientation with the team, a conference call with the Ethiopian consultant, money to be picked up… somebody give me something for this headache!

Ah, but don’t get me wrong – it’s all good. I’ve got so much to look forward to that the stress feels more than manageable. Once I get my lists made and I can start putting checkmarks beside things, I’ll feel much better. In the meantime, though, this blog will probably take low priority. Which, at this point, because Blogger is driving me crazy and won’t let me (or anyone else) comment in most places, may not be such a bad thing.

For all those people on whose blogs I TRIED to comment, you’ll just have to trust me that I’m still thinking of you. (Lucia, I’ve tried to tell you about three times that I hope you have a great trip!) And to those of you who sent me emails asking for an African postcard/blessing- THANKS! I look forward to the hunt for some interesting postcards.

For those who haven’t sent an email yet… there’s still time! I’m still in Canada (in relatively close proximity to a computer) until the end of the year.

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