Happy Birthday–Welcoming Another Year of Change.

Thanks for all the birthday wishes yesterday. I was going to say, “another year on the down-slope of the mountain” but though it’s a reality check to make this year count–it sounds so negative. And I’m very positive about this coming year.

moving truck, moving day
Creative Commons License photo credit: kaitlyn rose

The big news last year was Tommy, Ana and Isabella moving back to Cincinnati. Never thought it would happen–a true miracle to have my younger son and his family living nearby.

The second biggest news was I finally fulfilled about three years worth of promises to myself and actually launched this blog. Whew, it would have been a lousy way to begin a new year if I had to blow out my candles and wish “start a blog.” Again. So, thanks to each of you for stopping by and making my birthday wishes come true.

Yesterday, it did strike me how things were different from previous birthdays. Several family and friends sent me virtual cards: complete with a virtual cake, which even had a candle to virtually blow out. Now, I’m wondering. Are virtual wishes the same as real wishes? Do virtual wishes come true easier? Can virtual wishes only be for things on the web? Got to say, the virtual cakes were very pretty–though less fattening.

My husband Tom, ever the nurturer, gave me my fondest wish–a new security system for my blog. What? You were thinking something else? (Readers from my Romance Writer’s Group–behave yourselves.) Actually it was a gift of love to give me what I actually wanted (security system) even though Tom doesn’t quite know what I’m trying to do or what it is. That is true love–and the secret of our 40 year marriage:

He trusts me to know what I want.

And that my romance-writer friends is very sexy.

The other internet phenomenon was I got so many birthday wishes either by email, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Twitter. That is another new experience for this year. And true to form, Sister Beth sent me my virtual card a day late. (Beth I love you and you always make me laugh. The technology may change, but Beth’s card will always come a day late.)

Makes one wonder what technology will be offered a year from now?
Maybe Google will be sending “Instant Birthday Parties” (laugh).

My technology birthday wish for this year is to get at least 100 subscribers by Jan. 1. I know, I know. I’m still trying to figure out the AWeber system and alert everyone when there is a new post, but I’m working on it.

The big change in our lives is we are putting our condo up for sale next week. (see post) Usually we have sold our houses ourselves, but with the economy being weak and housing in distress, we decided we needed a professional.

Realtor Team vs. IEP Team

Let’s all make a group moan–Professionals–oh no! Just for fun, let’s compare our IEP system to their system.

We have learned some interesting things this move. First, the realtors work as a Team. Realtor One works with the buyers and sellers (direct support staff–shows houses, listens to their needs/wants…); Realtor Two works with the banks and other Realtor companies (evaluation and assessment–comparison research, loans, assorted paperwork…); Realtor Three does the Open Houses, sells the actual property and finds potential leads to refer to Realtor One (I can’t decide if this would be like our case manager, or a teacher). Unlike my experiences in Disability World–their team actually works. Imagine that!

They also call in Experts (related services). The first set of experts was the “House Stagers.” They took over 4 hours on just our living room. It was just like on TV. They removed all personal items, arranged the furniture looking at traffic flow and how to accentuate the two main features of the room: the view through the two large sliding doors and our fireplace. They pulled pictures and a coffee table from other rooms in the house. They tried the furniture in several different arrangements. They suggested we purchase some live flowers. They did a great job (when we get a link in the multiple listing I’ll add it here.)

The living room now looks sparse as a nun’s cell (and I would know) only even in a nun’s cell they would have had Sister remove the cross over her bed.

Tom and I rented a storage bin but it is already full and we have a ton more to move out to simplify the house and “make it look bigger.”

The biggest surprise is most of the stuff we moved out–we don’t need. I can hear Seth Godin and Leo Babuta shouting, “MINIMALISM” and they are right. But what do you do about Great Grandma Jean’s cherished cut-glass bowl? And Aaron’s Boy Scout uniform????? Sure I don’t n-e-e-d them. But…

I do think a Nobel Peace prize should be given to the person who invented bubble wrap.

I decided last night I am going to ask Aaron to let us use his garage to store his other set of things. We keep two rooms for Aaron. One at his house with his housemate (click here), and one in our home where he comes every weekend. So, two chests, two sets of clothes, two sets of wall pictures, two beds, chairs…. So it is all Aaron’s stuff. I’m sure the staff will think we are being overbearing or something, but I can justify it. I’ll jam more of his clothes in his closet, but Aaron is paying rent and there is room in the garage since Aaron doesn’t drive.

We’ll see. It will probably lead to a couple meetings with our “team” which may or may not work as well together as the Realtors.


What do your think? Is it reasonable for us to store Aaron’s things in the garage at his house? Should the staff even have a say?

Keep Climbing–Onward and Upward

All my best,