Once, when I was much, much younger (how long ago 15 seems!), my friends and I were walking home from somewhere and decided to take a shortcut… through a field, over a fence, around a reservoir (or maybe just a pond).  We made it through the field no problem but I got stuck on the fence…and ripped my favourite jeans.  By the time we walked around the water and made it to the street again, it probably would have been much faster to just use the sidewalk.

We also experience these snafus trying to navigate around traffic by taking unfamiliar backroads.  Different experience, same result.  You would think I would learn the lesson but sadly, no, I am forever trying to take shortcuts and then I’m left dealing with the frustration and annoyance of a plan gone awry.   The “proper” way is usually the best way.

I recently had this experience creating my “Family Rules” project (woohoo!  It’s done!)

I failed to plan properly and it was one headache after another… and my end result is not nearly as pretty as I had hoped.  If you look closely, my frame is not square…hehe!  And even though spray paint (burnished copper) is my new best friend, we need to work on the fine points of our relationship.  What looked great wet in the sunlight didn’t dry quite as nicely (and the little dust motes that landed in the wet paint didnt’ help either!)   Ah, well.. project finished and I’ve made note of how to perfect my process in the future!

All this shortcut business can have it’s upside, however!  Like when it saves Mommy time cooking dinner.  I try to look for 2-in-1 meals – prep once and have enough leftover to recreate.  Usually, I only have enough leftover for Kevin’s lunch!   Sunday, though, we ate fabulous bruschetta chicken.  I had a package of boneless, skinless thights from Walmart ($5 for 8 thighs).  I brushed them with olive oil, diced some tomatoes, mixed them with a little olive oil, black pepper, basil and garlic and spooned over top of the chicken (I just typed kitchen instead of chicken! Wow – glad I caught that one).  I then sprinkled with some shredded mozzarella and baked – it’s moist, it’s yummy, it went down with minimum of complaints.  I served it with garlic bread, fresh veggies and a salad.  It was hot Sunday and we wanted something simple.

After dinner, I comandeered the leftovers and staked my claim on them (sorry, Kev!) It made for another quick, easy dinner last night.  I reheated and diced the chicken (with bruschetta topping).  I added it to some pesto-tossed rotini topped with grated parmesan (the real stuff – not the powder!) and easy-peasy dinner was served.  The boys loved it!!!  And I loved it because my shortcut actually resulted in less work for once!   What’s your best household shortcut?

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