heard the word administravia on a job interview, and I am sure that this has been a popular term for years and I am hopelessly behind. For those of you just as behind the times as me, administravia refers to annoying paperwork and forms that are a necessary evil as part of your work.
When I was in College, I did not have a lot of administravia, with the exception of homework. Twice a year I would fill out some paperwork, once a year do some taxes and fill out a financial aid form and occasionally attempt to balance my checkbook. (Confession-I almost never did-Thankfully I kept enough track of things to almost never bounce a check.
Then Dave and I got married and we shared the paperwork responsibilities. This was before the debit card and online banking was big so we wrote lots and lots of checks for everyday use and paying bills.
Now of course, if I write more than 3 checks in a month its a banner month, since not only can I set up for the bank to electronically pay the majority of my bills, I can set up Quicken to automatically record the payments. In reality, with the exception of tax time, and open enrollment, we should really have a minimum of administravia in our lives.
Our move had lots of administravia with turning utilities on and off, and address changes and dealing with changing the cars over, but it was in a burst of work and we hopefully won’t have to go through it for a few years.
But we have children. The administravia starts small, with some papers to get a birth certificate and a social security card. Then if they go to daycare, there is some paperwork you fill out once a year to keep your information updated.
Then you have a second child, and they both hit school age. Now it feels like we are constantly dealing with dittos, permission slips, multiple school registration forms, health forms, pick up and drop off forms. There are fundraisers and school newsletters, school menus and other bits of paperwork that floats in and out of our house.
One year I saved all the catalogs I got between November 1st and Christmas. It was 250. I wonder if I saved every piece of paper sent home from school for a two month period, how much there would be.
What really amazes me is that with the internet and the prevalence of email, that I can’t receive all of this information electronically. Why I can’t get a log on and password and fill out all of the paperwork online instead of trying to cram information into teeny tiny spaces.
However, since I have a few years before Dave and I have to deal with SAT sign ups and financial aid paperwork and college applications, I should probably enjoy the small administravia that I deal with now.
What about you? Are you amazed by the amount of paperwork that you deal with? Do you find that most of it is child and school related. Does anyone have handwriting tiny and neat enough to fit in the little spots on the forms?