Whatever You Do, Don't Drop The Balls
While I live in a place with four clear-cut seasons a year, my workplace
has only two - Not-quite-as-busy, and Moving-at-the-speed-of-oh-shit. We are currently transitioning from one to the other. Let me explain a little:
The Extension Office covers a lot of territory - 4-H, Master Gardeners, the Community Educational Outreach Service, and a Farmers Market, along with various other community educational efforts like the Energy Express summer reading program, financial literacy programs, Meet the Plants, nutritional programs, etc. We put out a quarterly newsletter that we print, stuff, fold, sticker, address, meter, and mail, in house. We (try to) maintain a website, help people get their soil tested, answer questions about garden pests and diseases, and conduct two week-long summer camps.
We are an office of three - the 4-H Youth Development Assistant, the Office Assistant (me) and our boss the Extension Agent. 4-H accounts for fully half of all we do and the 4-HYD assistant is the support for all those programs. I'm the support for the rest. There are a few areas where we overlap - Meet the Plants is actually a 4-H function, but the classes are taught by our Master Gardeners. Likewise, Energy Express actually falls under the purview of 4-H but is big enough to be too much added onto the 4-HYD gal's already heavy workload, so I get it.
Here's what I'm looking at over the next four months:
- Two sessions of Bank at School, requiring the "resetting" of dozens of envelopes full of play money and paperwork
- Master Gardeners classes, spring workshop, and plant sale
- Energy Express, involving applications, background and reference checks for twenty site supervisors and mentors, 5,000 children's applications delivered to the schools (only 88 of which will actually be used) food delivery and some transportation arranged; paper, crayons, markers, paint, glue, scissors, pencils, books and what we call "found objects" for 88 kids at two different sites, for six weeks
- Two newsletters
- 2000 copies of the Master Gardeners gardening calendar which I create, then help print and assemble
- Media releases and advertising for all the above, plus the Farmers Market
- Yearbooks for both the Master Gardeners and the Community Ecucational Outreach Service volunteers
None of this is rocket science but it all consumes a ridiculous amount of time. Add in the fact that the boss has decided to redo the office top to bottom with new paint, refurbished floors, new furniture - and it's all looking pretty overwhelming at this point.
And I can't drop any balls.
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