Neighbors pay people to do EVERYTHING! - Page 3 - Mothering Forums

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#61 of 110 Old 09-30-2009, 09:00 PM
 
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I don't care. I am not judgemental. This IS the FRUGALITY website where I thought the point was to discuss FRUGALITY. I am sorry, I am in a new neighborhood where I don't know anybody and I was feeling lonely and thought it was funny that there is a company called "Scoopers: Our Business is Picking Up". I thought some other frugal mothers might too.

I really didn't want to get anybody ruffled up or anything - I just thought it was funny and that given the usual tone of this page, I could enjoy a bit of nice cybersocialization.
well, i'm with you. it seems a little over-the-top to pay people to maintain everything about your life (as my grandpa would say, "you might as well pay someone to wipe your a$$") but in my family self-sufficiency is pretty valued.

most of the frugal people i know do pretty much everything themselves. being honest, i would judge those people (especially the one without kids) to be lazy , of course, i could be wrong and that would suck, but that's what my first impression would be.

eh. who needs a signature?
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#62 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 01:31 AM
 
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Eh, I'm pretty sure that people in my life think I am lazy. I have gotten the "ZOMG, she doesn't even mow her own yard!!!" look more than once. They fail to make the connection that I am the lazy one who is the volunteer librarian at the school their children attend, organized the school picnic for years, headed up the book fair, and so on. All things that they were begged to help with but didn't because they didn't have the time. Given a choice between hanging out with books or mowing the lawn I will always pick the books, and $20/wk is a very fair swap in my mind.

If I had known that it only cost $15 for someone to pick up the dog poop in my yard, I would have been on it in a hot minute. I could kick myself for never making the call.

Now, I will happily pore over my coupon binder for hours in order to save 25cents. I wonder if someone would pay me to do that for them
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#63 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 08:13 AM
 
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I always find it interesting to find out what peoples' dreaded chores are.

I grew up with a gardening mama, and my dh is the Tomato King, so I have never even thought about yard work. I think my dh might have a stroke if someone dared to come and touch his grass. He talks to it, fertilizes it, puts down nematodes in the spring. He cuts it just so, in different angles depending on the week. He seeds, he babies, you get the idea.

Seriously...we once had to move from a rental because 2 months into the lease they just wouldn't budge on the lawn care people coming. He couldn't handle it. Just seeing those people out there mowing and trimming gave him the vespers. LOL

But, I am very, very (might I say VERY) quick to drop off his shirts weekly at the dry cleaner. He has casual Friday, so 4 ironed shirts a week. VERY worth the $4.80, cause I just hate to iron that bad.
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#64 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 09:11 AM
 
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Sorry, I didn't mean to step on any toes

I just didn't know until a couple of weeks ago that you could pay people to do some of this stuff and I would never think of calling anybody to do it. I was not saying anything bad about their choices, just thought if there was anywhere on earth where people might also be surprised it was here. Sort of thought this was the diy, saving money sort of crowd...anyway, I am clearly the weird one here and also it seems being viewed as judgemental, so sorry.
I dont think you're being judgemental at all.

We hire out big jobs that will take a long time or add a lot of stress (like the 11 trees we had planted that would have nearly ruined our marriage, or the tile regrouting in our bathroom that desparatly needs to be done before the baby comes), but we do all of the regularly scheduled things ourselves.

Sometimes my husband suggests we hire these regular chores out too, but I actually think you remove opportunities for yourself and your kids to enjoy or learn something together when you hire it all out. For instance, my dh doesnt really care to mow and edge the lawn, but it only needs to be done twice per month, and our kids love to watch him and ride with him on the mower. It usually gets all of us outside and in the yard at a time, playing and working together, when maybe we'd otherwise be lounging around watching TV for hours on end (which of course there is nothing wrong with that when balanced with other activities, IMO). SO I encourage him to keep doing it, and we join him and "help" how we can.

Of course I realize that any job you loath doing may be better off hiring out, and maybe some day we will too. Each family has to do what works best for them, which may or may not be what we do!

OP, I imagine your neighbors dont think strangly about you guys for doing everything youselves, they might even admire you for it! I can't imagine the strength and patience it takes to gut and remodel a house!!
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#65 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 09:19 AM
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I just didn't know until a couple of weeks ago that you could pay people to do some of this stuff and I would never think of calling anybody to do it.
Ooooh, Honey, you can pay people to go to your home and do ANYTHING these days. Some things make sense financially, many things cost more this way but the person is rich enough to not care. I used to live in an area where...well, m ex-roommate's mom actually had a cleaning lady come out just to clean the toilet in one bathroom because there was some toothpaste left in the sink by one of the kids and she didn't feel like making one of the kids clean it and she wasn't going to. A 5-second job, and she called in the cleaning lady to do it. Not surprisingly, Mere was the roommate from HELL as this attitude of "someone else can do it all for me" carried over to her roommating courtesy (or lack of).
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#66 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 09:42 AM
 
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I know what you mean OP. It goes on around here too and I was shocked when I found out. There are a lot families with stay at home parents who hire housecleaners, in fact every single one of them I know does. And they don't do it to be frugal, believe me. It is a status thing, here at least. They all drive brand new cars and send their kids to expensive private preschools, birthday parties over the top, etc. I have found no evidence of frugality at all. Though there is one family at the end of the street who have their own business housecleaning though. They even hire employees who use their cars branded w/their business name. They apparently make a lot money doing that, they have the biggest and nicest house with the most cars.

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#67 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 09:51 AM
 
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Wildmonkeys, you must have moved in three doors from me a few months back!!! LOL

Seriously, most of the people on my street do as much as possible themselves and pay when they can't do something but there is one lady who greated the new family by telling them they were working on the exterior of the house too late at night (9;30pm in mid summer) and that people "around here do not do work like that." HA HA HA HA Seriously, this lady has gardeners (not just a lawn service) every 2 week planting and maintaining flowers, people to repaint ever 6 months, a cleaner, and gosh knows what else. Her smooth and silky hands NEVER get dirty.

Good for her.

We have a lawn service as dh is away 4 days a week and we want family time. I cook at home during the week so we can eat out at the weekends if we want to. My husbands boss will pay for a cleaner if we want but the moment I don't take advantage of that. (Will though as soon as I sort out the basement again.)

As to the poop pickerupper i would love to have them!!! Not going to happen though. My money has better places to be spent.
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#68 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 09:57 AM
 
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Aside from the money, it almost seems like more work to coordinate all the workers than to do the work than to do it yourself, ykwim? When we have had people come and do something for us that we don't know how to do or don't have the tools for (tree removal comes to mind) it required several calls and coordination --- it seems like so much work to have 10 plus people come to your house every week.
No doubt.
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#69 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 10:26 AM
 
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I live in an area where I am the only mama I know who DOSENT have a cleaning service, its me! 1/2 of my block has a lawn service. I get an organic delivery but we hire out almost nothing. But, DH and I as I stated can do almost anything. He and his Dad have dones of energy and DH enjoys doing all this type of stuff, his 5 brothers do too or can do it. I know several families where they are happier hiring it out and watching a movie all day saturday etc. Whatever floats your boat.

OP- I didnt see your post as judgemental, but rather surprised. And yes, this is the frugal board so you were expecting to LOL. But as with anything, its sometimes more frugal to hire things out.

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#70 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 10:33 AM
 
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OP- I didnt see your post as judgemental, but rather surprised. And yes, this is the frugal board so you were expecting to LOL. But as with anything, its sometimes more frugal to hire things out.
Ditto.

I live on a street where we have a combination of people who do everything themselves and people who have the car detailer comes to their house.

We view it as a cultural experience.
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#71 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 10:44 AM
 
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I am not rich but I do fully understand paying people to do those kinds of things. I have a lawn service and don't even own a lawn mower .
We have a large steep hill. A regular push mower broke one day past the warranty period. A riding mower to safely mow the hill would cost about $5000. DH and I were very frustrated by lawn equipment failures (older riding mower, new push mower, silly electric mower) until our neighbor started mowing the lawn for us. (He has 6 riding mowers - one with special wheel weights for our hill - and he really likes to drive them around) Being able to pay someone to remove the lawn frustration is a huge blessing.

Yes, it may be silly for wealthy people to pay to have everything done for them. But it does help keep service sector workers employed.
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#72 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 06:31 PM
 
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Most folks on my street pay for lawn services (and Zillow says we're a low income neighborhood) but I've got a 12 yo who does it for Gatorade and homemade cookies and $5! LOL!

We do everything ourselves from tearing up asbestos sheet vinyl in a taped up room in a special suit and a face mask to ripping up carpet and installing laminate. Paint? We've done inside and out! Rescreened a porch and laid sod too.

We did pay $1300 to have wallpaper removed and fresh paper installed. The original paper was put on bare drywall! It took 3 people 6 days to do 2 bathrooms, the master bedroom, foyer, and kitchen.

I have 2 special needs children too. We're fairly independent homeschoolers.

I just made a homemade chicken pot pie and I'm so tired - wish I could pay someone to serve it! LOL!

I thought PODS was different when it came out! Now I think it might be convenient for the storage unit to come to my driveway!

Sincerely,
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#73 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 08:01 PM
 
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My husbands boss will pay for a cleaner if we want but the moment I don't take advantage of that. (Will though as soon as I sort out the basement again.)

Are you nuts???? Free housecleaning and you haven't taken advantage of it???? I would be so on that.

And if I had the money, I'd hire everything out, except maybe laundry.
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#74 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 08:35 PM
 
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And if I had the money, I'd hire everything out, except maybe laundry.
That's the first thing I'd hire out. In college, we didn't have a washer/dryer for a while, and I convinced myself that fluff and fold was the same price as a laundromat. It was heavenly.

Even now, the $4.80 a week I spend on shirts is the best money spent all week.
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#75 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 08:58 PM
 
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Where we used to live, grocery delivery was the same price as buying at the store. Same sales, of course you couldn't use in-person coupons but there were online coupons, and basically it worked out to the same. Technically there was a $6 charge, but I only paid that every third time or so-- usually I got a coupon in the mail for free delivery.

You should ask your neighbor if that's the case where you are. If you can get your groceries delivered without paying more, you should!
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#76 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 09:02 PM
 
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I always find it interesting to find out what peoples' dreaded chores are.

I grew up with a gardening mama, and my dh is the Tomato King, so I have never even thought about yard work. I think my dh might have a stroke if someone dared to come and touch his grass. He talks to it, fertilizes it, puts down nematodes in the spring. He cuts it just so, in different angles depending on the week. He seeds, he babies, you get the idea.
I grew up gardening, but haven't done it in so long that I'm intimidated again. Plus, I've developed a pretty bad phobia about spiders and centipedes/millipedes. Eventually, we'll have a place where I can garden again, and I'll get back to it. But, I'll be a novice.

OTOH, I love mowing lawns. I prefer to do them with a manual push mower, but I'm okay with gas or electric, too. Cutting grass is fun.

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#77 of 110 Old 10-01-2009, 11:10 PM
 
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If people did everything themselves then there would a lot less jobs out there.

It wasn't that long ago in the Uk that people ENJOYED serving others, either as a maid, butler, serving tea, in shops.
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#78 of 110 Old 10-02-2009, 12:00 AM
 
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And if I had the money, I'd hire everything out, except maybe laundry.
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That's the first thing I'd hire out. In college, we didn't have a washer/dryer for a while, and I convinced myself that fluff and fold was the same price as a laundromat. It was heavenly.

Even now, the $4.80 a week I spend on shirts is the best money spent all week.
See, I don't mind the washing/drying/folding/putting away/nagging the kids to put away . And I don't iron dh's shirts, he does his own, so that's not an issue. But if he wants to send them out when we win the lottery, more power to him.

And I may as well do the laundry, I'm hiring everything else out.
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#79 of 110 Old 10-02-2009, 10:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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So much discussion! Fun!! Since I sparked all of this, I did want to add a couple of things. So many people have responded that they pay for this service or that service, that doesn't surprise me at all, it was the sheer quantity of services that surprised me. And yes, I agree that it is their money and if they want to use to to give people jobs and free up their time, then great. In fact, we spend money doing things away from home that employ other people, so I totally agree.

I do think a downside of contracting SO much out is that I am noticing a different feel in this neighborhood that makes it feel a bit less like a community. In our old more blue collar neighborhood, everyone did most things themselves. On the weekend, people would be out cutting grass and wave hello, or somebody would stop by and chat while you were weeding. If a neighbor got a new floor, they usually put it in themselves and there were often a ton of neighbors helping. My husband and I have helped neighbors paint, install french drains, put on screened porches, and hot tubs. When we moved out, we had a POD delivered and neighbors helped us load it. If somebody did a project and had trash, they would generally ask if anybody needed anything run to the dump. When neighbors were in the hospital or were elderly and their grass wasn't cut or their snow wasn't removed it seemed like somehow everybody just covered it. We have been here for almost 2 months and I rarely see my neighbors, almost all of them have lawn service and they just pull into their garages and shut the doors. They aren't out raking leaves or planting bulbs, resurfacing their driveways, or walking their dogs, so we aren't really meeting neighbors who don't have kids at the school with our kids. I think that is too bad. I think that knowing neighbors whose children have grown or who have preschool age children is a good thing. I think the feeling that your neighbors "have your back" might be a bit harder to come by here. Anyway, we have met really nice neighbors whose kids are the same age as our kids and everyone is pleasant enough - I just think it will take some getting used to.
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#80 of 110 Old 10-02-2009, 03:07 PM
 
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I do think a downside of contracting SO much out is that I am noticing a different feel in this neighborhood that makes it feel a bit less like a community. In our old more blue collar neighborhood, everyone did most things themselves. On the weekend, people would be out cutting grass and wave hello, or somebody would stop by and chat while you were weeding. If a neighbor got a new floor, they usually put it in themselves and there were often a ton of neighbors helping. My husband and I have helped neighbors paint, install french drains, put on screened porches, and hot tubs. When we moved out, we had a POD delivered and neighbors helped us load it. If somebody did a project and had trash, they would generally ask if anybody needed anything run to the dump. When neighbors were in the hospital or were elderly and their grass wasn't cut or their snow wasn't removed it seemed like somehow everybody just covered it. We have been here for almost 2 months and I rarely see my neighbors, almost all of them have lawn service and they just pull into their garages and shut the doors. They aren't out raking leaves or planting bulbs, resurfacing their driveways, or walking their dogs, so we aren't really meeting neighbors who don't have kids at the school with our kids. I think that is too bad. I think that knowing neighbors whose children have grown or who have preschool age children is a good thing. I think the feeling that your neighbors "have your back" might be a bit harder to come by here. Anyway, we have met really nice neighbors whose kids are the same age as our kids and everyone is pleasant enough - I just think it will take some getting used to.
Its sad how in one neighborhood is one way and yet another is totally different. We are in a very walk friendly neighborhood and we live near a downtown area, plus a few condo buildings so we get a ton of people walking by. Also most neighbors walk everywhere so we know so many people. But we didnt have that in our old neighborhood. Friends of ours also just moved to a subdivision that is a bit more pricey and she also has noticed all the same things you are pointing out. She said everyone gets in their cars, drives away and then comes back and pulls into the garage again.
We had to move a tub upstairs last year when remodeling and we grabbed 4 neighborhood guys to help. It took 10 minutes and then a few beers, and no one missed any of their own chores or the Bears game.
DH and I feel the attached garage is the downfall to knowing your neighbors.

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#81 of 110 Old 10-04-2009, 11:40 AM
 
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THis makes perfect sense in Frugality if you look at it from the other end.

People on MDC are always suggesting ways that women can stay home with their kids or start businesses where they can set their own hours and work while their kids are in school or while their DPs are watching the kids.

YOur post was FULL of ideas for businesses! Every one of those "silly" businesses was started by someone who needed more money and looked around, found a niche, marketed themselves, and is working hard to earn the money they need for their family!

savithny, 42 year old moderate mom to DS Primo (age 12) and DD Secunda (age 9).

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#82 of 110 Old 10-04-2009, 01:52 PM
 
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We have a 'lawn guy'. He just does lawns in our neighborhood, and this is the 2nd or 3rd summer he's done it. He's cheap $25, and I know that money helps him out. DH works 60 plus hours a week and I'd much rather him spend his downtime on something else.

I would also have someone to come in and do the heavy duty cleaning if I could afford it. I have 2 little ones - 25 and 11 months - and could really use the help!
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#83 of 110 Old 10-05-2009, 01:31 PM
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I get that it is cheaper to pay for somethings. And yes, grocery delivery is actually reasonable and makes sense with an infant. My point was that it is funny that they pay people to do EVERYTHING...the one with no kids and no job has had THREE different people come and do stuff today and it is only 11:00 am.

Aside from the money, it almost seems like more work to coordinate all the workers than to do the work than to do it yourself, ykwim? When we have had people come and do something for us that we don't know how to do or don't have the tools for (tree removal comes to mind) it required several calls and coordination --- it seems like so much work to have 10 plus people come to your house every week.

Anyway, as I said, I am not judging them, I am just amazed at the sheer number of services they contract out. It would never occur to me to leave the dog poo in the yard until somebody else swung by to pick it up -lol
I love your name, btw.
Yes, it is time consuming calling all those people.
I think they are rich and may be somewhat lonely.
Glad you found a reasonable place in the DC area.
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#84 of 110 Old 10-08-2009, 09:16 PM
 
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When we can afford it, I'm hiring a housecleaner. I'm not lazy either, I just hate to clean and cleaning is a source of family stress. If a neutral party did it, it would stop the cleaning wars!

Some things are worth paying for, there is no shame in paying for help if you don't have the help you need in your support netwok. In our mobile society, so many people are left without extended family help and can't do it all themselves.

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#85 of 110 Old 10-08-2009, 11:41 PM
 
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For the last two years I've hired a teenage girl on and off to babysit and clean. She has been a real lifesaver! As a single mom, there were times when I was under so much stress the 3 hours she spent cleaning were well worth the money, even if I was dipping into the gas or fun money. I love that she could handle the 'big jobs' like shampooing the rugs if I had everything else done, or she would just clean and the house would look great when I walked in the door. It is money well spent. I'd love to have a regular housekeeper, it's not really in the budget though.

On the other hand, I'm a D.I.Y'er! My dad is a custom home builder so most household repairs I do on my own. Things that are too expensive, I call the landlord for. I enjoy lawncare, so if I had a lawn I'd like to do that myself.

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#86 of 110 Old 10-10-2009, 04:10 AM
 
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Well we pay someone to mow our yard. Its extra for weeds ( which no one does) It mostly started b/c I had heart surgery and couldn't do it and then my husband works many hrs so he doesn't have the time. Plus,we have a chihuahua and if the grass gets too tall the poor fellow starts leaping over the grass blades like a gazelle. I don't begrudge people if that's what they want to do. Although my neighbor who is 90 still cuts her grass. She told me if I want to live to be 90,I'll get out there,too LOL
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#87 of 110 Old 10-10-2009, 11:13 AM
 
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Aside from the money, it almost seems like more work to coordinate all the workers than to do the work than to do it yourself, ykwim? When we have had people come and do something for us that we don't know how to do or don't have the tools for (tree removal comes to mind) it required several calls and coordination --- it seems like so much work to have 10 plus people come to your house every week.

But that was a one time event for you.

If they have these people come out on a regular basis, such as weekly or monthly, once it's set up the people just come. I used to get water delivered. Once I set up the initial service, they just came twice a month to pick up empties and leave new bottles.
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#88 of 110 Old 10-10-2009, 12:47 PM
 
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That's true. Our lawn service comes on Thursday mornings and has ever since we set up the service 15+ years ago. After the first summer, he asked us if we wanted him to come back next year, and we told him to just make it a standing appointment. If I were to have a pooper scooper, I would schedule that service for Wed. afternoon. Once you set up your services, you are finished.
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#89 of 110 Old 10-11-2009, 12:54 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SquishyKitty View Post
I looked into Grocery Delivery awhile back; it's really not as expensive as you'd think. I despise grocery shopping with every fiber of my being, so I was all for it. We ended up staying overseas, but when I come back, it will be mine. Oh yes, it will be mine.
It would probably even out or cost less for me to do grocery delivery (I think the fee is $10) because I would be much more likely to plan ahead for meals, I would be forced to stick to my list and not make impulse purchases and I would be able to "shop" without my children who make grocery shopping a bit of a nightmare most of the time. I think that service is money very well spent!

"Hey, I've got nothin' to do today but smile." - S & G
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#90 of 110 Old 10-15-2009, 07:31 PM
 
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I would be aghast also, and a bit envious IF I were wealthy, I would hire someone to clean the house, do laundry, and cook meals for us (aka another ME! lol) and I would LOVE it.
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