alwayswithme, a Weblog

where I keep my thoughts together

September: 30 Days of Things To Accomplish August 30, 2010

Filed under: DH,Explanations,Household,Organization — alwayswithme @ 1:11 pm

DH and I decided to exchange his office and my studio space.  We both have way too much stuff mostly because we have so little time to do the things we want to do but we still add to the list of things we want to do and buy or find things to support thiose habits. 

Anyway, the move is in flux.  The new furniture was delivered today – DH got a gorgeous leather office chair and a new desk/table.  I got two new bookshelves.  That won’t be enought but it is what the room has room for. 

I thought I would write up a list of 30 things to accomplish in September (ideally one each day).

  1. Menu plan for September using food in pantry and freezer
  2. List 10 items on Craigslist
  3. Hang curtains in new studio
  4. Wash sliding door window
  5. Sweep off front porch
  6. Find rattan like furniture for backporch – use Craigslist money
  7. Update address book
  8. Hang door on linen closet
  9. Patina the gift from Pat
  10. Sew the front up on winter PJ’s and red shirt
  11. Find broom closet
  12. Move IPOD to studio
  13. See if Apple will accept coupon printer software
  14. Make list of books to get from library
  15. Make list of songs to download from ITUNES
  16. Update calendar with school calendar stuff
  17. Trim Matt’s tree
  18. Trim roses
  19. Get a BlendTec – use birthday money
  20. Determine SCANNING procedure
  21. Have a scrapbook/cardmaking day to celebrate competing room exchange between DH and me
  22. Enroll in water exercise class
  23. Enroll in BodyFlow class
  24. Redo purse situation – wallet, coupons, calendar and cards
  25. Go shopping in a clothing store and try on the clothes
  26. Measure body
  27. Utilize calorie-count program
  28. Get recipes all in one place
  29. Get scrapbook items all in one place
  30. Get research all in one place

My Name is Julie and I Am Organizationally Challenged March 10, 2010

Filed under: Blog Parties,Decorating,DH,Explanations,Family,Household,Organization,Try This — alwayswithme @ 2:01 pm

My sister, who is also organizationally challenged, recommended a professional organizer whom she had used before to help me with my “issues”.  After putting it off for nearly a year because I just knew I would stumble upon THE system that would finally make everything make sense in my home; I hired her. 

She charged $25.00 an hour with a four hour minimum.  She worked with me for four hours on Monday and is coming again Friday for four hours.  She had me take her through the house showing her all my problem areas.  I could have only done that with a stranger.  She asked what my priorities were.  She asked what our hobbies and interests were as a family.  Then we went to work. 

I now have a Christmas closet that ONLY contains Christmas items.  I now have a home decor closet so that when I want to change out seasons or colors I can do that. Our home only has a tiny linen closet, a tiny closet in the foyer, a walk in closet in my husband’s office, small closets in the other three bedrooms.  The basement is unfinished but broken up into three rooms that have poles in the middle of them (I assume they are holding the house up so they are important) a sump pump hole in the floor of one of the basement rooms (good for those times it rains so much the water comes into the basement and needs to be funneled out not so good for looks or storage)   and the furnace/water heater in the middle of another basement room.  Not a good storage situation.  Useful mostly for exercise equipment, DH’s workshop and extra acquarium supplies.  My husband loves freshwater fish and what started out as one tank for our son is now nine tanks in various rooms in the house. 

We are down to our last child living at home, he is 12, so we will have an extra bedroom after his new room which is now the playroom is finished.  Two of the three older kids that have “moved out” still have stuff left here at our home that if put altogether probably would fill all of the “open” space in one of the the basement rooms easily.  Of course, it isn’t in one place it is in many places.  She suggested that we gather up each boy’s stuff (when I say boys I mean men 28 and 24 who have been gone for 3 or 4 years) and put them in two separate areas of the house – one for each child- and tell them to come and get it by X date or the charity truck is coming to take it away ah ha.  I don’t have a problem with this plan.  My husband, on the other hand will.  I’ve been trying to convince him of this for a  l  o  n  g  time.  My organizer is hoping that once he sees how much stuff each of them really has and how much space it actually takes up when accumulated in one space that he will see the light and make the call himself.  Perhaps even offer to carry it out, perhaps even load it in his truck and perhaps even deliver it to them.  I really don’t care how it gets gone, I just want it gone.  Love them, not all their stuff.

She also suggested that once our remaining son moves into the bigger bedroom (the room awaiting weatherproofing, new carpet and a new paint job) that instead of making his old room into a dedicated guest room that I turn it into my studio.  My current studio is what is supposed to be the formal living room.  It is very small and contains my piano, my library, my scrapbooking supplies, my rubberstamp supplies, my quilting supplies including fabric, my yarn for my crochet projects, our household files and bills as well as a small TV, a rocking chair, a small desk and a round side table with lamp.   Itisveryverycrowded and really unusable with piles of stuff everywhere.

That would leave the piano and my bookshelves plus the rocking chair and the side table with lamp in the formal living room.  Our 11 year old could practice his trumpet in what would now be the music/library room.  I had told the organizer that I always wanted to have a library because I love books and my mother has a library.  It is always something I wished I could have but didn’t think I had the house for.  I am actually receptive to this.  I had been looking forward to having a real guest room so I’m not sure how I’ll feel about not having a designated “guest” room, but the studio could probably serve as a guest room with one of those inflatable beds or even a rented bed if you can rent beds for the time a guest would need it.  Our 12 year old offered to let guests use his room if we needed to from time to time.  We actually don’t ever have that many guests as the older boys live nearby.

So her suggestions could work, if I get most of it done and then work on convincing DH that it is a good idea.  That is the hardest part.  Pray for me.

I’m rather excited about this.  I’ll keep you posted on what really happens.

UPDATE:  Today is September 1, 2010

  • The items the older boys wanted have been moved out of the house.  What remains needs to be sold or given to charity
  • Instead of the room exchange ideas above, DH agreed to move his office to the room my studio is in, which he will share with our son and his video gaming equipment (this will leave our son’s room as video gaming free which I feel better about)
  • My studio will be DH old office (it is upstairs so if it is in shambles, as I am prone to have it, it will not be out where everyone can view it)
  • We have begun the room exchange process.  It is a huge job.  We will all work on it tonight in celebration of my birthday
  • We purchased an inflatable bed which worked well for the guests we had over the summer.  When we get DS moved to his new room, I think his old room could serve as a library/guestroom just fine.  It would also be a good space for DS to practice his trumpet.
  • We have decided to give the piano away – need to put it on Craigslist

Found Another Blog Party That Looks Fun March 28, 2009

Filed under: Blog Parties,DH,DS, The Younger,Family — alwayswithme @ 1:28 pm
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Friday’s Fave Five #30


Five favorite things that happened this week, I like the positiveness of this series so here are mine, in no particular order:

1.  We had a fantastic time at the AMA Supercross Races in St. Louis.  Spur of the moment trip but lifetime of memories for our son.  One of those, “I am so glad we did that now things”.

2.  Installation at TOPS completed. 

3.  Calling my dad after Missouri made that great shot right at the buzzer and him answering “what a shot!”    This is significant because we are Kansas fans, but Kansas fans who appreciate great work.  Way to go Tigers.

4.  Laying in bed this morning cuddling with DH.  We never get to do that.  Thank you rain and sleet.

5.  Lunch at Accurso’s, yummy!  New favorite Italian Restaurant.

For more Favorite Fives click here.


7 Quick Takes March 27, 2009

Filed under: Catholic,DH,Flowers — alwayswithme @ 12:08 pm
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I started reading Conversion Diary again recently and found she has a blog party called 7 Quick Takes.  I thought I’d give it a try.

1.  On my heart this week has been our country and my church.  I am so grateful for the strong, faithful priests and bishops who are speaking truth to power about how our politicians are harming our country.  I’m especially proud of our Archbishop, Joseph Naumann and his publicly standing up to our current governor, Kathleen Sebelius and your soon to be Health and Human Services Cabinet Secretary.  Don’t even get me started on Notre Dame and President Obama.

2.  The weather has been, how can I say it. . .odd.  70’s at the beginning of the week and 6 to 12 inches of snow predicted for tomorrow.  Things are blooming people!  I’m thinking I better go clip my forsythia and cover the roses.

3.  My dear friend, Beth is moving home again in two months.  I’m so excited.  It has been two years.  The years have actually gone by fairly fast, assisted in part by her three visits home but still.  I am so happy.

4.  My doctor upped my ADD medication as I requested so we will see how I do.  I hope that some of that clarity comes back.

5.  My husband brought home five more fish last night.  We determined that of the six platys we had only one of them was female so she needed some help.  He also replaced the two little black angels that died when the Opaline gouromi ATE them.  She is in time out in a little tank all by herself.  I’m still mad at her.

6.  Looking forward to Red Envelope day.

7.  Oh! and Rock Chalk Jayhawk KU!  I know probably not but one can hope; and a shout out to the Missouri Tigers, gotta  support The Big 12.



Back From My Birthday Trip September 2, 2008

Filed under: DH,DS, The Younger,Family — alwayswithme @ 10:13 am

I turned 50 yesterday and am perfectly okay with it.  I am amazed at the number of women I meet who aren’t or weren’t.  The older I get, the more I know about what is important.  Trivial things just don’t matter.  I wouldn’t be younger again unless I could redo a few crucial decisions I made in my past life and since I can’t; I am feel really good about where I am in my life.

My husband, 10 year old son and I traveled to Eureka Springs our favorite way; DH on his Harley and DS and I in the van following traveling the back roads.  The weather was good, the roads were great, the scenery fabulous and the time had was fun.  We went for relaxation and we got relaxation.  We stayed at a bed and breakfast in the countryside.  We fished, drove the historic loop, shopped in the historic district, walked in the countryside, visited a cavern, ate fudge (shame, shame, shame), and ate great BBQ.  I slept great, got the perfect leather purse from my DS, received happy birthday phone calls and am awaiting my fabulous birthstone ring.  All and all, a great, great birthday. 


Getting Lost August 15, 2008

Filed under: DH,DS, The Older,DS, The Younger,Family — alwayswithme @ 12:22 pm

Yesterday was the day to go pick up the headboard.  I don’t like to drive the highways so I do my best to avoid them.  I had to use 71 on the way there but I headed back out in a different direction on the way back.  I knew we lived west and north of where we were and so off we went. 





What a joy it was to travel through the rural areas where all you could see was fields of green, stalks of corn, bales of hay, an occasional home and blue skies.  It was great.  We could have gone directly back in 30 minutes but instead we spent 90 minutes just enjoying the feeling of open space and each other’s company.  It was great.

Had bunco last night and I won the middle of the road prize.  It was fun to get together with all the other women.  Rob got his fish tonight while he was with his dad.  I got home in time to watch him feed them.  He loves them already.  He ended up with four rather than three.  I envision lots of fish tanks in his future.

Our anniversary is today.  We don’t have anything planned and that is okay.  It is such a busy time right now.  Rob offered to go to a friends house (bless his heart).  We’ve got to load up stuff in the van to move to Matt’s new house tomorrow evening.  I’ve got TOPS tomorrow morning.  I need to get flowers to Phyllis today hopefully and see if Rob can go to Jeff’s tomorrow from early morning to mid afternoon.  I’ve got to pick up the appliance dolly tomorrow at 1:00 p.m. so I’ve got to remember to have room in the van for it plus maybe the headboard.

Greg is not going to work the second job anymore.  I am a bit frightened about that but he says we will be okay.  I hope he can arrange to bill out his time to clients through the firm like he thinks he should be able to and get a cut of those billings.  He thinks the partners will support that.  I worry that he won’t pursue it.  I don’t know why I don’t have faith that he’ll do it because he says he will and he is reliable.  It is probably because I want to know now and he is oh so patient.

Anyway, off to make my list of things to do longer.


The Woman at Church July 29, 2008

Filed under: DH,Family — alwayswithme @ 7:14 am
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I attend a very large church with many services plus we live in a suburban area that has a lot very good jobs so there are always new people coming into the community.  So today, like almost any day, I see someone I haven’t seen before.  As we pulled into the parking lot  this beautiful blond woman in a simple brown knit sleeveless dress with a perfect tan was crossing the lot with her family to get to the church building.  I thought wow, I wish I could look somewhat like her.  I try not to let that happen too often but she was it and so it did.

We parked and scooted into mass just before it started.  The sanctuary was really packed; we had to search  for a spot with three spaces available.  I found one; the nice woman sitting on the end moved way down so that DH, DS and I plus another woman could be seated.  Now, who do you think was sitting directly in front of my DH?  Oh yes, the beautiful woman in brown.  I felt so bad for him, having to be so close to her.  I know DH is a visual guy — what man isn’t.  He spent most of the service with his eyes closed because he is so faithful; such a godly man.  I tried to not notice her and to remind myself that she isn’t perfect that she has her share of problems and heartaches just as we all do.  I prayed that God would let me be my version of beautiful a year from now so that I wouldn’t have to feel this envy.  I asked God for forgiveness for letting myself get in this shape, for not looking like the woman my husband deserves to have for his mate and  for help in getting myself under control.

It wasn’t just this woman was beautiful but she also appeared to be very good mom which made her all that much more attractive.  I truly hope God richly blesses her and I pray for any problems or concerns she has in her life.  I also pray that she and her family enjoy a beautiful relationship with our Lord.

Peace be with you.


We Bought a New Refrigerator July 27, 2008

Filed under: DH,Family — alwayswithme @ 8:19 am

Our son has purchased a house and needs a refrigerator.  We are giving him ours and we bought a Kenmore Elite with the freezer on the bottom model on sale today at Sears. 

 DH suggested we get the one with water and ice dispenser on the door because we only buy a refrigerator once every 15 to 20 years (it has been 17 years).  I’m so happy!  It will be delivered on 08-08-08.  Gotta use up as much food as we can between now and then.


Accepting Compliments and other things I’ve Learned Today June 5, 2008

Filed under: DH,DS, The Younger,Family — alwayswithme @ 8:44 pm
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I am the leader of a TOPS group.  I joined TOPS a year and a half ago.  I was elected as leader in April.  I accepted because I love the group and they love me back.  Everyone has been so complimentary to me since I have begun running the meetings.  There is so much I don’t know but I am doing the best I know how to at this time.  I know if I need help someone will help me. 

Today, practically the whole group complimented me during the meeting.  It was very overwhelming; but appreciated.  I feel somewhat unworthy as I am only being me.  It was interesting for me when I was talking this out with my DH  (what a good guy).  He said “having trouble accepting a compliment are you?”  At first i thought that might be it but then I realized that is was more I was having trouble accepting that I was being complimented for being who I am.  I feel that from my DH and my DS and somewhat from a dear friend and my sisters; this, however is from an entire group of women who accept me for who I am and love me in spite of it!  So, one of the things I learned today is that I am appreciated.  What a gift that is to me.

Rob and I went to noon mass today and it was so rewarding, fulfilling and I appreciated it.  Rob enjoyed it too; said the time went really fast.  I am glad I was led to make this a goal for the summer and I learned that we are rewarded when we are faithful.

I learned today that it is good to laugh.

I learned today that HyVee has good hamburger.

I read a wonderful blog entry on a blog that I have currently forgotten who is was, I’ll have to edit it.  This blogger is writing a series on an e-book which is entitled EDUCATION IS AN ATOMOSPHERE, A DISCIPLINE, A LIFE by /Sonya Shafer here.  I have downloaded for myself and look forward to reading it as well as the series by whoever it is.


Things I Learned Today June 3, 2008

Filed under: DH,Family — alwayswithme @ 3:50 am
  1. Asking Greg what I thought to be a simple question right before he went to bed is not a good thing.
  2. I love the green HYVEE bags
  3. I need to shop with a grocery list
  4. I need to get my coupons better organized
  5. I need a price list
  6. I can’t imagine being Jon and Kate
  7. How good it feels to please Rob
  8. That doing a cleaning activity for 10 minutes with Rob twice a day will be a productive thing
  9. Army Wives starts on Sunday night
  10. I have to be careful at CVS
  11. I need to be more settled to do any devotion
  12. I need to check into Beth Moore books – been hearing about her a lot lately
  13. I need to exercise early to get it into my day