I try to talk on MY time. It's taken me awhile to get to this point but my family is important too and I need to dedicate time to them and my home. I love talking to girlfriends and helping out with the PTA but I found myself running crazy and neglecting the very thing that was MOST important... the needs of my family.
Now when I need to get something done without interruptions (believe me, I have interruption enough with 6 kiddos... I don't need more) I let the phone go. Girlfriends who know me forgive me and those who don't never know. I always make sure to call everyone back (praise caller ID) and talk when I am available. Let the answering machine be your secretary.
My second phone tip is: Schedule a time when you will make all of your phone calls. If you schedule a time to use the phone, you'll have all of your numbers ready and a dedicated time to complete your tasks... less transition time to the next job on the list.
How do you handle phone calls in your house?