Sunday, September 30, 2012

Our CRAZY Life

Life in the Herendeen household has been absolutely crazy lately. No joke. We’re taking the “a lot on your plate” thing to a whole new level. If you had to compare our “plate” with something, it’d be like those flimsy paper plates filled to the brim at the church potluck type of thing. You know, when you start piling food on top of other food (maybe I’m the only one who does that… but, still, you get what I mean…).

Don’t get me wrong—it’s not bad. It’s just crazy. And I guess you’re probably thinking somewhere along the lines of why?

Well, good question. We’ll get back to that. J

First, I want to throw this out there—when I started this blog, it was with the full intention that I would write primarily about finances. Finances, budgeting, and organizing paperwork are things that I’m really, really good at. I’m not saying that to brag or be in your face or anything like that. It’s just something that comes naturally to me. You give me a dollar amount earned, what bills need to be paid, and a pile of paperwork, and I’m right in my element. I’ll have it straightened out in a few hours tops. So since that’s one of my passions, I wanted to take that and do something good with it. I know there are a lot of people who don’t excel in that area (trust me… there’s lots of things I don’t excel in… we’ll actually get to some of that in a bit!), and I wanted to help them. I hate hearing how people are broke, are living paycheck to paycheck, or don’t know how they’re going to put food on the table. It breaks my heart. But while I do still intend to write a lot about finances, probably more so than other areas, I’ve also come to realize that it’s really hard to have your financial life in shape if other areas aren’t. It doesn’t make sense (or cents haha) to have a super-organized budget and desk, but a disaster area kitchen. You’ve got to get other areas of your life together, too, in order to have successful finances, at least in my opinion.

So, where does that bring us? Well, I think now would be a good time to explain why life in the Herendeen household is a wee bit on the crazy side…

The short version—we have a lot going on. But I guess I already said that with the whole plate analogy. J The long version—well, here we go:

1.)    The biggest reason why life is crazy is because I am going through a really, really big job change. Corey and I prayed a ton, crunched numbers, and thought long and hard and, in the end, decided that it would be best for our family for me to stay home with Tate. As a result, about a month and a half ago, we started to set in motion the groundwork for making this happen. I talked to a few friends about babysitting their children and started to get that set up. Corey and I worked our butts off and paid off a lingering credit card debt that was hanging over our heads to free up some money each month. And I put in notice at work that I would be leaving.


It’s funny, because as much as I know this is the right decision, telling work was extremely hard. I felt so guilty. I work for a wonderful company and they’ve been very good to me. I love the people I work with. But it was killing me leaving Tate every morning—I would literally cry every day, and that’s not healthy—for him, or for me. Of course, when I did tell work, they completely understood and were incredibly supportive (I told you they’re great!). I told them I would stay on until my replacement was hired and trained. This coming week will be my last, and I’ll start babysitting October 15th. It’s scary, but also very exciting.


2.)    So, we’re also getting everything set up for me to babysit! Like I said, I am so, so very excited about this. I think it will be wonderful for Tate, wonderful for me, and I really hope that I will be able to make a great impact on the life of some great little kids. Throughout my entire growing up, my mom babysat, so I know firsthand that life as a babysitter can be crazy, but also very rewarding. I have some really awesome kids lined up, which I know is a huge blessing in and of itself. I truly can’t wait. Like I said, it is a little scary, but I have no doubt in my mind that everything will work out.


Of course, this adjustment does require some work. While our house is set up fine for one little boy, it wasn’t exactly in ideal condition to have multiple little ones on a regular basis. So, that meant some decent changes to our little abode. Most of them are basic re-organizing and re-arranging. We built a new storage area/TV stand for our living room, are working on some cubbies and such for our entryway, and made our dining room table a bit smaller so I could fit a train table and other toys in as well, just to name a few of the small little jobs. But… there are a few biggies…


3.)    Like a bathroom remodel! Let me start off by saying this probably wasn’t my brightest idea ever. We had a completely functioning bathroom. But I decided that we needed a bathtub in our house, and, even more, I wanted to do it while I knew we’d have the money to afford it. So, the gut job began. We took out the toilet and sink, and ripped out the shower. It was messy. It was crazy. But, it is coming along. Everything but the sink is up and running and the sink should be done (hopefully) today. After that we’ll just have to build a shelf in our corner cubby area, paint, and do some general organizing and whatnot. The goal is to have all of that accomplished by my first day of babysitting (keep your fingers crossed!).

This is a "before" of our bathroom-- we had already started to take some stuff apart, so it's not in the best of the best shape, but it gives you an idea of where we're coming from! :) Eventually I plan on doing a post entirely about just our bathroom adventure, and when that happens, you'll get "during" and "after" photos too!

Oh, and we also built a closet. One of the er, wonderful things about our little place is that, prior to the bathroom remodel, there was not a single closet. Zip. Zilch. Nada. So, I decided it would be awesome to take a bit of space from our bathroom, and give it to Tate’s bedroom (which is right next door), to give him a closet. I’m incredibly excited about this. It needs finished out, but I can’t wait to get our little man’s clothes and other miscellaneous items transferred over! J


4.)    We also bought a truck. During our bathroom remodel, it became very apparent that trips to Menards, Lowes, and Home Depot went a lot better when there was a truck involved. Corey started a bit of a search on Craigslist, not really with the intention of us getting one yet… we just wanted to see what was out there. Well, of course we found one at a great price that was exactly what we were looking for… so we took the jump. As a result, there are four vehicles sitting at the Herendeen household at this moment (but trust me—we’ll be narrowing that down to two soon!)

 This is a pic of the new truck :)

5.)    And, in case all of that wasn’t enough, Corey’s job is going through shift realignment. He’ll still be working nights, but it’ll be the opposite nights that he works now (yes, it’s incredibly confusing… basically, he works a similar to schedule to what nurses do with twelve hour shifts).

6.)    I guess we could technically throw in that Monday is our two year anniversary, and the 4th is my grandparent’s fiftieth and my parent’s twenty-sixth! Tonight Corey and I are going out to dinner (yay for my parents keeping Tatey-kins!) and coming up soon, we’re planning a weekend getaway to Cincinnati to celebrate my grandparent’s huge accomplishment (FIFTY—wow!!!!).
This is my grandparents, Larry & Martha Tonjes! :) Photo courtesy of my uncle, Tim Tonjes.

So yeah, we have a lot going on. J

So how does this all relate to my blog and any of what I’ve talked about? Well… like I said earlier, I think the rest of your life also needs to be in a semblance of order for your financial world to make sense. Right now, the rest of my life is not in order, and I can definitely tell when I go to pay my bills each week.

And now is where we really get into it—I’m committing myself to get the rest of my life in order, and to share the journey with you. If you want to join in, that’s awesome. I’d love to hear about what you’re doing and how it’s going. If not, you can just use me for entertainment purposes, and that’s fine too! J

Which, I might as well disclose this up front—you know how I said I’m really, really good at finances, budgeting, and organizing paperwork? Well, I’m really, really not good and organizing stuff. All the stuff our house has accumulated during our two years of living here—well, I don’t know what to do with it. I take a look at it all and feel completely lost. Paralyzed. Granted, it doesn’t help that there’s so much going on that I don’t really have a lot of time or energy to stay on top of it all (or that we don’t have closets!).

Luckily, I have an awesome mama. While my mom doesn’t do so hot at the paperwork side of things, she kicks butt at organizing stuff. So, we’re employing some good old fashioned team work. Yesterday she came in and helped me start to get everything in a bit more order. With her help, I’m making my to-do list a DONE list! We’ve gone from disaster area, to looking pretty darn presentable! J

Okay… so to wrap this realllllly long (sorry!) blog post up—as I go along this journey of getting things in order, I’ll share it with you. Currently, I have a few projects brewing—a home management binder (yay, Pinterest!), a recipe binder, the cubbies for the entryway, getting Tate’s room in better working order, and finishing up the bathroom, just to start. So, stay tuned for some fun ideas, tips, and, if all else fails, laughs! J

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