For the past month my family has been orchestrating a major remodel on our recently purchased “money pit.”  From the fixtures to the electrical and plumbing, to the painting, tiles and countertop selections, there are so many variables to maintain in order to keep the project on track and our move date in place (after three changes, already).  At first, my husband and I started out with a folder for each task; i.e., moving, renting, remodeling with lists for each folder — but things started falling through the cracks.  So last weekend I drew up a timeline that encompasses each room and what is required on our end.  Then I printed blank calendar pages for June and July and filled in the dates with the items we need to do and when.

Timelines are useful for other projects, as well, like keeping track of jobs I’m applying for to include date of application, source, contact information and any response from the company.  I think I may have also mentioned in one of my previous blogs how an ASU mentor of mine shared her highly organized series of spreadsheets in which she logs her writing and contest submissions.  Additionally, I’ve seen similar types of timelines in the world of publishing in order to move the magazine through production.

For me, it’s always the write time for timelines because they’re simply a way to make sure all my ducks are in a row.  And yesterday when my contractor told me the painter is coming next week so colors need to be finalized, I just had to glance at my calendar to know we’d be stopping by Dunn Edwards today to review the different shades.

As much as I love timelines, I’m the first to admit they’re obviously not infallible.  If you change something — like the color of your fixtures, for instance — you have to remember to follow-up on all the details relating to that change (such as the light hanging in your entryway which is currently finished in oil-rubbed bronze when all your other accessories are now brushed nickel), or you will drop the ball.  If there’s any question, just write it down so you don’t forget.  It will save a lot of backtracking and frustrations in the long run.  ~ cs