5 Things Friday 8/17/2018

  1. The past week has really flown by. I was able to accomplish almost everything on my list for this second vacation week! Including hair cuts for all of us and a nail trim for Rugar!
  2. Starting Monday, both Matt and I will be working full time. This will be the first time in our marriage (13 years) that we will both be working full-time.
  3. One of the main things I am concerned about is cooking and groceries. We will all continue to take lunches as well as eat the majority if not all of our meals at home. I have spent a considerable amount of time and money on groceries this week. I have visited Costco twice, Food Lion three times and Walmart and Harris Teeter. I have spent a total of $467 just this week. I will probably end close to $500 as I am going to stop at Food Lion for more Diet Cokes over the next several day. I am able to purchase 10 2L of Diet Coke for $9.52 until Tuesday.  After doing most of the cooking on Monday, I have continued to add simple things by cooking double most of the week.
  4. We finally got around to weeding and watering the garden today. I discovered that my lettuce had self seeded and I have a bunch of small plants. I am going to leave and see if any grow larger enough to eat. We also harvested several watermelon and two full buckets of green peppers. I am hopefully that we will continue to harvest tomatoes, pimentos and peppers for at least another month. I was also very excited to see that my sweet potatoes are starting to grow. They can stay in the ground until the first frost which is around the end of October.
  5. I was also able to complete a picture collage using pictures from our Disney 2015 trip. I have only had the collage picture for 4 months!

Did I mention how excited I am to start at Davie County Schools on Monday?

Five Things Friday 8/10/2018

1. We are currently on vacation in Cherry Grove South Carolina.  Our vacation started last Sunday and we will head back home this Sunday, the August 12th. Haley came down on Sunday and stayed to Wednesday.  My mother came on Monday and will be leaving on Saturday. Amanda and her significant other arrived late Wednesday night and will stay till Sunday.  We have had the perfect beach weather with lots of time on the beach!

2. On Tuesday, I was offered a position at Davie County Schools.  I accepted it the same day. This is a different school district than the kids are in, but the schedule should be similar enough to allow us the flexibility we need.  I will get off two months in the summer in addition to a couple of weeks at Christmas, a week in the Spring and all major holidays.!

3. After accepting the new position, I realized that I have been wearing scrubs  for the past 7 or more years. I have purchased some jeans and shorts but did not have but one pair of pants other than jeans.   We have also spent some time shopping at the outlets near by.  I was able to purchase 3 pair of pants, 2 shirts and a long sleeve dress for $125.00

4. Today is my 46th birthday!  We spent the morning on the beach. We shopped at the Nike outlet this afternoon, prior to going to eat real fresh seafood.  We also spent time shopping at a Christmas store. Both LIly and Amanda purchased new items for my birthday at the store. This has been an awesome birthday.

5.On Saturday our lawn mower, started an untimely death. We will have to replace it during this next week.

Thursday Thoughts- Sheila’s Work Update

I have been sort of quiet about my job change for a couple of reason.

The first of which is that the hospital required a 28 calendar day notice.  I also needed to tell my patients/ families in person.  I was also concerned about how notice would work out. I have only one day left and am relief that all though it has been very stressful and I have struggled, things have worked out the way anticipated regarding dates.  My official last day of work will be tomorrow August 3rd, but my official termination date is August 10th. The difference is I was allowed to use my already scheduled vacation. This does not seem like a huge difference because vacation time will be paid with my last paycheck but the difference is my insurance. We, as a family, will lose insurance on August 18th.  I will plan to post an entire blog about insurance and my thoughts in the very near future.

Another issue has been working out details regarding both of my new jobs. The first is really a night time job as I will be working in the evenings/nights Sunday- Thursday via Skype in the territory of Guam.  I am still not certain of the number of hours even each day but hopefully will be able to schedule around the kids activities.  I have been working on receiving OT license for Guam since May. The latest update is that I should be approved on August 10th.  I am now anticipating starting this in September. My second or daytime job is   I will be doing Home Health therapy with children under the age of 18 years.  I have signed a contract with this company but will not be official begin work until August 27th. I will be working four days a week, continuing with Thursday off, the biggest change is my hours will be 8-2pm so that I can pick the kids up from school each day!

Did you look at the calendar?   Let me share that I will have an extended 3 week vacation between jobs!  We have our annual family vacation the first week but I am so excited to have a couple of weeks at home to catch up and enjoy before going back to work. I am planning to share a lot more on the blog during this time and also hope to share other changes including finances as well.

Survival Mode

I can definitely say that for the last week and probably at least till next Saturday (August 4) we are in survival mode. The fact that everyone is dressed and breathing is the goal. Eating should occur but otherwise count me out.

Why survival mode?
During this two week period, Matt and I both are working full time jobs. Matt’s job is extra stressful due to this being his first month. He is working hard to make improvements that are noticeable but still being respectful to his predecessor. I am completing  my final two weeks at the hospital. It is hard to say goodbye to some of my patients and the management is continuing to make it very obvious that I have made the right decision to move.

Kendall and Zach attended an Art Discovery camp this past week and plan to attend our church Vacation Bible School during this coming week. This adds stress for being on time, drop off and picking up. In addition, grouchy children are very possible.

I have been diagnosed with an infection, which is occasional painful. The bigger issue is that I think that the antibiotic is adding to my fatigue and overall poor mood.

I am still trying to obtain licensure in Guam. I have been working on this since mid-May.  I am becoming more and more frustrated. The first problem is that the department ONLY reviews licensure application on the first Friday of each month.  The second problem is that they appear to only answer email on the third Friday of each month.  Finally, this process is set up for a new graduate, not a season therapist. For example, based on their required forms, I need a professor from my college to sign a document that detailed the number of theory hours and the number of fieldwork hours. This document needs to be attached to my official college transcripts from the college. Last Friday, I received an email reply to one of my four previous attempts that simply stated these were required in order to review my application.

The blessing that are being discovered and enjoyed in this survival mode.
Matt LOVES his new job and the hours will be perfect once I am no longer working so much. I am convinced now more than ever, this job change is much needed!

My mother has been so generous to help with picking up and dropping off children and is making sure that get to eat lunch or a snack with her.

Because of the antibiotic, I need to limit my sun exposure. Saturday, we all stayed home and got a lot of housework and cooking completed. Today, Sunday, Matt and the kids are at the pool. I am using the time to catch up here and in other small ways around the house.

Because of my notice, I ended up with only two patients on my schedule last Friday which allowed me time to head to Winston Salem State University. I contact the OT department to discover not only was one of my professors still on staff but she was in the office on Friday. I spent several hours but was able to get the form completed and attached to my transcripts, which were sent out in the mail Friday afternoon. I have again provide all the required information, so hopefully my licensure will be approved.

5 days and counting………..

Job Update

Matt has started his new job and absolute LOVES it.  He is currently working from home 50% of the time, which allows us to continue with our busy lives!  We have purchased several pair of dress pants and a couple of pair of dress pants but less than $50 has update his work clothes.

I am currently working out my notice at the hospital. I officially have 8 days left but who is counting. I had a previously scheduled vacation for the second week of August, which they chose to honor.  My last official day will be August 10th. My job with the home health company will not begin until August 27th.  I am a little anxious but mostly looking forward to the two week break between returning from the beach and officially beginning the new position.  I realize that I will need to purchase some new long sleeves/pants outfits to wear. I have been wearing scrubs for most of the last 10 years with a coat in the winter time or long sleeves under shirts to this is a huge need.  I have enough OT t-shirts that until it turns cold I should be ok.  I am actively working with the company to get started in Guam. I am anticipating this to start in mid August as well. I have no concrete details but hope things start to take shape in the near future.

We have purchased a new to us/used car to reduce the number of miles and improve gas mileage.  We currently have spent several hours cleaning it up but are very hopeful that we have not discovered any major issues. Matt will be driving for the next month until I start my home health job.

I am hopeful to increase my post as I look forward to having additional time at home starting in August.

Season of Change

I have hinted several times that big changes were in the works for our family.  I am so excited and scared to death to share and start these changes. First  let me explain the reasons for the changes.  We have been struggling for over a year with two things, first finances and second- how busy we are. The answer to our financial problems seems easy- increase your income. The answer to our crazy busy lives seems much harder.  I could have never imagined that both of these problems could be answered at the same time.

Both Matt and I have been actively seeking different employment during the last several months. I am excited to share that we both have been successful and will be changing jobs in the next month. Matt is the marketing manger for the Davie County Humane Society. He actually started with training this past week  and will officially start this Monday.  I have given my resignation and will be completing my employment in mid August. I have accepted two different contract positions. One is for local pediatric home health and the second is school system contracting in Guam and several other states.  Matt position is for 30 hours per week, so he is increasing both his pay and hours.  The positions I have accepted are going to start at around 20-25 hours per week but may/ hopefully increase to around 30 hours in the next year. My hours will be school hours (8-2) and 7pm to 10 pm Sunday and Wednesday nights.  These are flexible and will allow me to be at home and spend much more quality time with the kids. I am so excited. Kendall expressed why this is so important to us with this statement “Mom, you will be home for dinner EVERY night?  That is the best news EVER!” My salary should remain about the same as now depending on the number of patients, I am given to start with. The biggest change will be with insurances and taxes.

Change is scary! Change in jobs is really scary!  I will not be able to establish a good budget or really much of any budget until at least September. My best estimate is that we will work paycheck to paycheck until November with the goal of establishing and maintaining a budget by January.  There are several reasons that establishing the budget will be so difficult. First, I will have a two-three week period where I am not working at all or very minimal at best. Second, I am still unsure of how many hours I will be working at each position. Third, my hours will continue to be unsteady until at least October. We must also decided and obtain health insurance and figure out our tax liability.

In anticipation of these changes, we have tighten the budget and are really working to save every penny possible during the month of July.  I will try and share more about these major changes as I process through them.  We have decided not to change our scheduled Beach vacation so that will give us some time to re-charge and actually communicate!

Inexpensive/no Cost Staycation

We like to travel and it the past we have travelled ALOT!  Some of our travel was based on competition cheerleading and some on Matt’s family being in Michigan. In 2017, we spent 10 days in Michigan, 8 days at Myrtle Beach and 10 days in Disney World. We also travelled to Raleigh for a competition as well. This year has been a much slower year. I am actually enjoying a 5 day staycation this week. The rehab department at the hospital is closed for the Fourth of July, I don’t normally work on Thursday. In addition,  I was lucky enough to find someone to cover Friday of this week to make it a nice long break.

Yesterday, Wednesday, was the Fourth of July.  I started the day by washing and hanging Kendall and Zach’s bedding on the clothes line. We LOVE the smell of sunshine and sheets and energy-wise we saved about four hours of time in the dryer.  I  received some cucumbers and tomatoes at work on Tuesday. Matt started bread before heading to work. For lunch, we enjoyed BLT sandwich’s instead of eating out. Matt worked until 1:30 but as soon as he made it home we loaded up and headed to the pool.  We always take a cooler and the kids have their own spending money earned thru chores if they chose to purchase ice cream at the pool. To celebrate we had a cook out with friends. We provided the hamburger meat, slaw and chill. Everything came out of the refrigerator. To end the day, we headed out to enjoy our town’s free fireworks display.  Total spent $0

Today, both Matt and I have appointments.  I washed and hung out to dry a total of 5 loads of bedding before lunch. This saved us at least 5 additional hours of dryer use. I have spent some time getting together a grocery list with coupons for Harris Teeter.  After much consideration, I decided to make egg rolls and fried rice for lunch , again vs a trip out. Matt will be making Sloppy Joes for dinner so we should be save with the no eating out again today.  We are currently out of spray sunscreen as the last bottle purchased did not work. I am waiting on gift cards from Swagbucks before heading out to return and purchase more.  We are planning to head to swim team practice tonight so no additional spending there.  Total spending today should be only out of the grocery budget.

Friday, the plan is to head to Wet and Wild to spend the day. Zach is bringing a friend. We have season passes and our pasta salad for lunch is already made. We have already used our passes enough to cover the cost. Matt and Lily will be heading back  on Sunday with the youth group so again a no spend day.

My goal is to not eat out the entire staycation which will also save a ton on expenses!   I am actually excited to be able to enjoy some extra time with the kids without spending money.

What is your favorite thing to do on a “staycation”?

5 Things Friday- 6/29/2018

Matt and I enjoyed two days off together this week! Wednesday and Thursday!

We spent Wednesday at Wet and Wild with the kids. I can honestly say it was one of the best days ever!

Amanda is having my second grandson in November. I think I am the least excited because everyone else is OVER the moon! I am really just as excited don’t tell them!

I get to enjoy a 5 day break starting next Wednesday! I can’t wait!

Kendall is celebrating her 10th birthday this Sunday. July 1st, how can this be?

Monday Menu Plan 6/18/2018

This is a very different menu plan. The little kids are all away at camp this week. My initial plan was to throw my hands in the air and say “let’s go out to eat or make something for yourself.”  Fortunately, my frugal ways took over and I had to come up with a partial plan.

Breakfast- Saturday-frozen French toast , Sunday- Bacon, eggs and toast, Monday- toast with Nutella or peanut butter Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday- Choice of cereal, eggs or  grits. I am encouraging eggs as we were given 3 dozen by the neighbor.

Lunch- Saturday-chicken salad wrap at the pool  , Sunday- Baked ziti with friends. I have left over pizza and tuna helper or a salad for my lunch this week.

Dinner – Saturday- Cheeseburger pizza with homemade crust.   , Sunday-  Nachos Monday- Tuna Helper , Tuesday-  Steaks and twice baked potato, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday-free style- including left-overs.  We may eat out one night but I am debating that option.