Sunday Koffee Klatch and time to help others~~

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Date Joined Jan 2005
Total Posts : 9289
   Posted 2/21/2010 2:00 AM (GMT -6)   
Sunday is the day we share ideas on making our lives easier and more enjoyable to live. There's no secret that we are up against many problems that most others aren't but by sharing solutions it does help other members more options to an easier life.

Today let's share ideas on running errands. What tips and tricks do you have to make getting these chores done more easily? Hire someone else to do them? Pay bills online or over the phone instead of in person? Share a ride with a friend or neighbor? Lots of ways we can make this part of life easier...what's yours?

I think the one thing I do that helps me the most is to be very organized about my errands. I'm try to live as cheap as possible, try to be thrifty, so I will make a list of the stops I need to make, which order is the most efficient and the purpose for each stop. Sometimes I prioritize them by how important it is for me to do. If one stop is the fabric store or somewhere for a "fun" item that I don't need right away then it will be at the end of my list. If I get too tired then I don't go but at least I have the most vital stops already done. I'm mentally good for about 3 stops when I go out and most often only make it to two. As long as I know this and keep to my plan then I do fairly well. But if I push it and stop at too many places...well since we can't use the 'P' word, let's just say I'm stupid if I do it. tongue

What tips and tricks do you have to share on getting errands run?
"Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit, but Wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad."

(> <) Co-Moderator Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Forums
Fibromyalgia, PTSD, UC, Diabetic on insulin, collapsed disk, arthritis scattered around and a few other delights.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 3193
   Posted 2/21/2010 3:31 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi all...

The biggest "obstacle" for me (other than the health stuff) is not being able to drive much. We do a lot of things online/via mail. I, too, try to stay really organized and map out the things we need or have to do...

Like you, Chutz, I always have to do the most important things first...because there's always a chance that I will be too wiped out to continue on.

The biggest chore that I miss...(that I'm sure others hate!) grocery shopping. That used to be my 1x per week to either get out alone, or I would take one child with me...and I'd let them help pick out his favorite stuff (a special treat in a big family!). Now, my husband and older boys do all of the shopping. I'm very grateful that they do it... but that's the one thing that I miss being able to do on my own.

Main Health Problems: Dysautonomia/POTS; CFS/Fibromyalgia; Severe Hypertension; Hypothyroidism; Hypoadrenalism; Mixed (Obstructive/Central) Sleep Apnea - on Auto BiPap; Depression/Anxiety; Severe Vitamin D Deficiency

Pain Issues: Cervical/Thoracic back pain; migraines; carpal tunnel syndrome; widespread joint/muscle pain, nerve pain in hands/arms/feet; Future Plans: Intrathecal Pain Pump; already completed trial (Sept, 2008); awaiting my decision for implantation

Meds: MS Contin; Dilaudid; Actiq; Soma ; Neurontin; Atenolol; Midodrine; Phenergan/Zofran/Reglan; Effexor(depression)/Ativan(anxiety); Synthroid; Prednisone; and on the list goes...

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Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 6795
   Posted 2/21/2010 5:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Since it's just me I don't have anyone else to run the errands. I do try to organize them, especially those that are in the same area of the nearby city. I don't like to drive there too often to save on gas.

I do tend to do my grocery shopping in chunks (tho' there's not a lot for just 1 person!), but the biggest thing I do is pack my own groceries so none of the bags are too heavy. And then store them in the trunk, back the car into the driveway, and make several trips into the house rather than trying to carry too much at once. I know the people at the store sometimes think I'm just trying to use up bags, but I just can't have any one bag too heavy.


Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2009
Total Posts : 856
   Posted 2/21/2010 5:42 AM (GMT -6)   
Great suggestions! Well, I have finally learned to accept help from people. It took me years to not want to do things by myself. For example, when I go to the grocery store, they pack the bags. I don't offer to help even if I want to. At the store I go to, they always ask me if I need help to get to my car or help with putting the bags in my cart. I accept help from others, even though I wish I didn't have to.

Also, I ask others for help when I need it. I used to always feel bad about being a burden to others, but I have come to the realization that many people really do want to help and are more than happy to if you ask!

I also split things up. I used to be able to run around for hours. So I do a lot of little trips now instead.


Forum Moderator

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 16804
   Posted 2/21/2010 10:40 AM (GMT -6)   
One of the big savers for me is on online bill paying. No more worrying about running out of stamps or do I even have some stamps. Because of postage going up every year even if you have to pay for online bill paying, it is probably still cheaper than buying stamps and gas used to go buy them.
Another thing that is a true life saver for me because of seeing so many different drs is using my calendar on my computer. Mine will send me a reminder via email and I can chose when I want the reminder sent. For my dr appts I set them to send me a reminder the day before the appt. I do carry a small calendar with me when I go to the dr so that I don't doublebook myself when I schedule a return visit.
I do most of the errand running at my house. I have to pick & chose what gets done first by the importance of the errand. I rarely ever get all the errands done in one day. I try to spread them out over a couple of days. I keep all of my errand running to the same side of town.
Depending on what I need from the grocery store determines who does the grocery shopping. I buy mainly from WalMart and Kroger for meat. My husband will not go to WalMart and grocery shop because he doesn't know where everything is at in the store. This is a pet peeve I guess for him, lol. I really do not know of any goos short cuts when it comes to grocery shopping. 

crohns disease dx 2002 & small bowel resection, still looking for remission whatever that is, chronic pain 22 yrs, added ulcerative colitis 6-05 to the mix, high blood pressure 28 yrs, aortic heart valve insuffiency, depression, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis lumbar spine, scoliosis lumbar spine, peripheral neuropathy hands & feet, COPD & on oxygen therapy, lupus & psoriasis and psoratic arthritis. Several other health issues just not enough room to list it all. Too many surgeries to list and too many medications to list. Currently on 17 different daily medications. Intrathecal pain pump implanted June 05.

New Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 5
   Posted 2/21/2010 12:44 PM (GMT -6)   
I have a similar process for carrying groceries in but instead of me bagging them at the store (they really frown on that.. I've tried) I let them bag them up however they want and load them into the car for me. Then when I get home my son and I each grab a reuseable shopping bag and load it up to our own max weight (he's only 8) we have to make more trips between the car and house than others but it sure beats trying to lug in too many at one time and then not being able to put them away. Nothing like letting groceries you JUST bought spoil in the floor in the kitchen ....I'm so thankful that he can put the groceries away now with supervison.

Screaming Eagle
Veteran Member

Date Joined Sep 2009
Total Posts : 5005
   Posted 2/21/2010 3:36 PM (GMT -6)   
I had the same problem as Flower, in that I have a hard accepting help from others, and usually try to do it myself. I'm now to the place that I can no longer do many things myself, and need the help.

The thing I do, is prioritize my list, and ask the person I know can get it done for me. I'm still not comfortable doing that, but right now, and after the surgery, I will have no choice.

Stray made a good point about online bill pay, and that works very well for us. Our grocery store is only 1blk away, as are the bank, and several other stores, so I don't have to travel far.

DDD (Degenerative Disk Disease) S1-L4-L5, Heart Attack 2002, Angioplasty to clear blocked Artery and to implant Stent. Six Epidurals, Disocgram, Melanoma Cancer 07, Lumbar Fusion March of 2010, Four cortisone injections Tendinitis in Elbow.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 702
   Posted 2/21/2010 5:02 PM (GMT -6)   
when my hubby isnt around to unload groceries, I use a kids wagon to roll to my door.
Chronic Lyme Disease,Fibromyalgia, CFS, PCOS, sleep apnea, hypothyroidism, type 2 diabetes, bulging discs to name a few

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 3089
   Posted 2/21/2010 11:29 PM (GMT -6)   
As you all know, I don't have back, neck, or leg issues, but I do have a hard time getting out sometimes because of the CP. I'm in pretty good shape, physically, but I don't sleep & that on top of the pain & depression makes every little thing a huge effort. Sometimes even just walking across campus (or even to the biology building, where I practically "live" which is just across the quad from my dorm) or up a flight of stairs is enough to make me want to (or actually) collapse.

Since my mother's surgery, I've been doing most of the grocery shopping for myself & the family on the weekends. I always try to group my errands together. I wait until the last possible moment & then will go to all the places that are nearby each other (gas station, bank, pharmacy, grocery store, etc) in one outing (if possible...sometimes I only make the most crucial one or two). I almost never do any clothes shopping or shopping for "fun." I don't like to spend the money & don't really want/need anything, but more than that, I just don't have the energy! I've been putting of birthday shopping for my sister now for about 3 wks. I absolutely have to go on Friday, though, because that is her birthday & there is nothing worse than having to say to someone "well, I am planning on getting you something, but I just haven't had the chance yet..."

I also like to do my shopping online if possible. If I need to buy something for myself or someone else, I always do it online if possible. I don't like that you can't see things in person, or try things on, etc, but it is so much more convenient!


Post Edited (skeye) : 2/21/2010 9:32:52 PM (GMT-7)

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