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For once, time is on your side

I love this weekend, with its extra hour. It feels like such a gift, even better than unexpectedly finding a $5 bill in your pocket.

For some people, it's another hour to sleep. But for others, that extra hour in the fall always seems to come just when we need to get things done.

Weather permitting, I plan to spend it painting a couple chairs in the garage -- getting an early start Sunday.

But I know there are a dozen other chores I could use that extra time for, too. (Just read the two other stories on this page if you are looking for something to do around the house this weekend. And plan to get your hands dirty!).

And it's always such a great feeling to look at the clock Sunday and realize, hey, it's only 1:30. There is so much time left in the afternoon.

Not only is it a great weekend for chores, it's also a good weekend to be away doing something fun -- because, of course, 1 p.m. is the new 2. Time seems to slow down.

The start and end of Daylight Saving Time was always a big deal in my family, because my father could not stand to have a clock in the house set at the wrong hour.

There would be discussion as to whether to reset the clocks Saturday night at bedtime -- before the time change officially happened -- or first thing Sunday.

Only one person could be in charge, of course, to eliminate the risk of resetting the clocks twice by two different sets of hands.

And all clocks had to tell the absolute, precise time. 3-2-1 . . . set it now!

My husband and I are not so fussy. No two clocks in our house read the same time. Most are a minute or five fast, which is not necessarily a bad thing when there are school buses to catch and appointments to make.

What time is it? At our house, it depends what room you're in.

The clock in our daughter's bedroom often is entirely wrong because she thinks she knows how to set her alarm and the fact is, she does not.

She messes up both the clock and alarm time sets, which means that her alarm never goes off when she needs it to, but it may welcome me home at the end of the day.

The cats, having listened to it buzzing, practically drag me upstairs to turn it off.

And here's the thing about the clock in my car: It is so wrong.

Twice a year, when I reset it, it's fine for a day or so. Then it speeds up a minute. Then two. For a couple years, it settled on being 10 minutes fast.

Lately, it's been 15 minutes fast.

This all began happening when our daughter was learning to tell time, of course. At a very young age, she learned that 5:10 p.m. really meant 5 p.m.

I often wondered if this could become a problem at school.

Teacher: Time for the math test!

Daughter: No it's not, we still have 10 minutes.

As for that extra hour this weekend, I want to enjoy it and I want everyone else in the house to enjoy it as well.

Not that I plan to wake up everyone at 2 a.m., when Daylight Saving Time ends and clocks are set back an hour.

Besides, I may not have to.

If our daughter starts fiddling around with the clock in her room before she goes to bed Saturday night, it's very likely her alarm will go off in the middle of the night.

Another timely tradition.


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