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What’s Next for Missy Homemaker?

I’ve been contemplating this a lot lately. I really love this little blog. I love seeing the familiar faces pop up in the comments. I love hearing from people on my FB page and seeing you all like me on Twitter.

But I have a problem, and it’s a biggie.

I STILL don’t have internet.

Why on God’s green earth can we spend billions and trillions of dollars perfecting a spying system that can identify people in their backyards from space (What? Have you never seen Google Maps? I can practically read my license plate on there.) but we can’t seem to get reliable affordable internet two miles from a major interstate and 5.5 miles from the nearest town?
Continue reading What’s Next for Missy Homemaker?

A long overdue update

It seems in life, curveballs are one of the only reliable things. I’ve been thrown a couple of those in the last month which is one of the reasons that I’ve been so absent. There’s another reason too, and I’ll get to that.

I’ve been having some medical issues lately that involve a blistering rash reaction to sunlight, swelling of my legs and feet, joint pain, and a crushing fatigue.
It’s been a total bummer because I’m finally in my dream house, homesteading like I’ve wanted to do forever, and back in a place I LOVE <3.

I hadn’t wanted to go to the doctor, because…well…I just don’t like to. But, because my heart was also acting up (I have this thing where every so often my heart will do this weird thing with racing heart beat–like 120+ bpm when I’m just sitting still, skipped beats, and a really funky rhythm), I decided to go.
Continue reading A long overdue update

Whatever happened to the SAHM going back to work?

Back a couple weeks ago, I wrote about what SAHMs needed to consider before they decided to go back to work. At the time, I had applied for and was waiting to interview for a job with a pretty large corporation.

There were several reasons I wanted to go back to work. I wanted to be able to have extra money to pay everything off early. I also wanted to finally get my career back on track, to live up to the standards I’d set for myself as an educated woman many years ago, and quite frankly, to finally have something that was just mine.

back in work

I interviewed for the position the same day we closed on our house. I felt the interview went very well, and two out of the three managers I interviewed with stated that I did a fine job. But the third… I’m pretty good at reading people, and he just wasn’t into me at all. Perhaps I came off as too confident of my abilities (Some men just don’t appreciate a woman who can hold her own with men). Perhaps he didn’t get the feeling that I’d be a ‘part of the group’ as he kept saying was the key to being successful in the position.

Either way, I didn’t get the position. I was quite stunned as I was more than qualified (with one of the shift managers even telling me that I had more experience than he had in several areas!).

I was bummed because the job paid REALLY well, I would be in an environment that I was comfortable and one that I know I could be very successful in. The extra money was the biggest reason  though. That sure would have been really nice.

If I’m honest with myself, there were things that I was dreading about the job though. The 35 minute commute would really suck come winter especially considering that depending on what line I was working on, I’d have to be there at 3:30 a.m. or 4:00 a.m. And those hours. Ugh. I’ve worked them before, and it’s damn near impossible to have a normal home life when I’m going to bed at 7:00 p.m.

What happens now?

Well, I’m not sure. There are definitely other places I could apply. I could get a part time job in town just to bring in some extra money. I see the YMCA has openings.

Maybe I’ll wait until the kids go back to school and find something then.

Maybe I’ll sell my new truck so that money can be put back in the budget and buy me some time.

Maybe I should talk to my husband about it and ask him his opinion.

 

What?? No internet?!

Today marks  two weeks that we’ve been on the homestead. More importantly, it marks two weeks that we’ve been without both internet and reliable data services on our cell phones.

Let me tell you…it sucks.

I thought I’d be down with driving into town (it’s only 6 miles to the library after all) a couple times a week to write and do any other online things that need to get done. Oh, naive one…how silly are you?

interenet

Going to town requires a few things I don’t necessarily enjoy doing such as…getting dressed and making myself presentable. It also requires planning as the library isn’t open 24/7 like my old internet was. Then there’s the issue of my computer not wanting to connect with the library internet once we’re there. Awesome.

So while I chastise the boys for being so down about not having any internet, inside I’m throwing my own little tantrum.

I WANT MY INTERNET BACK!!

One would think with the technology available today, there would be reliable rural internet available. One would also think Sprint could get its head out of its behind and create a network that works like they say it does.

But alas, it’s not meant to be.

I did find a solution to the connection problem. I have to be sitting in the room with all the other computers while working on mine. So imagine me, sitting at a library computer open to one thing and my laptop open to WordPress. Nerd-dom fo’ sho.

Let me leave you with this today. We have the most amazing views.

MIA in Blogland

Hi Everyone! I just wanted to fill you all in on what’s been happening here at Missy Homemaker and why I’ve been MIA in Blogland.

Packing has been in full swing here as we ready ourselves for the LAST move for a very long time (I hope!). There has been at least three trips to the thrift shop and one more to go as we clean things out and decide what we want to keep and what should move on.

There has also been trips out to Iowa to see my honey who is still living in a campground by himself. Don’t feel sorry for him though. Our camper is nicer that some of the homes I’ve lived in. Peanut and I actually spent Easter weekend out there, and the Easter Bunny found Peanut at the campground. It was raining, so he hid the eggs in the camper. Since the older boys go to their dad’s every Easter, I think this would be a great tradition for us to start with Peanut.

go_back_to_work

This last week we had to run the puppies to the vet for their rabies shots (we’ve done their other shots). We were a little shocked to find out that the poor puppies didn’t simply have dry skin or even a food sensitivity like we’d thought, but scabies otherwise known as mange. Gross. Those poor babies. So, LOTS of washing things in hot water and extra cleaning in areas that the puppies spend the most time.

And there’s one last thing that’s been taking up a little bit of actual time and a LOT of mental effort.

I’ve decided to go back to work. I’ll expound on this more later when I know what’s going on for sure, but I can tell you that there’s a lot more to this decision than even I suspected. As a matter of fact, I’m working on another blog post with a few things that could make or break a job offer.

Oh, and for those curious, we’re still limping through homeschool. Punkin and Peanut have finished their school work for the year. Peanut is moving forward with 1st grade material, and Punkin is reviewing his work from this last year. Jeremy and Sweet Pea aren’t too far behind.

This Sunday I leave for Iowa to finalize everything for our new house. We have the final walk through Sunday evening and the closing is Monday morning. EEEE!!! I then have an interview Monday afternoon (It’s going to last 3 hours. Wish me luck!) during which time J will move the camper out of the campground to the homestead.

Monday night will most likely be chinese take-out on the floor of the first home we’ve ever purchased together. I wish I could put into words just how excited I am!

Tuesday will be a very early day for both of us as we have to drive back here separately so J can have his truck to move the things the moving truck won’t. It’s a 5.5 hour drive, at the end of which we’ll have to finish up any last minute packing and cleaning. Do you know how hard it is to clean a little house filled with boxes? Darn near impossible.

Wednesday is moving day! The truck will begin loading around 9 a.m. and will most likely finish up around 1pm. We’ll clean anything that’s left behind the movers as they go. When the they’re done with the house, the boys, dogs, and I will start our 5.5 hour drive back out to the homestead.

The truck unloads out there on Friday, so we’ll be spending Mother’s Day setting up our home. Could you ask for a better gift?

Back to packing I go. Even though it seems like we’ve done a ton, it looks like there’s so much more to do. Why this surprises me I don’t know, because you’d think I’d be used to it by now.

Frustration-Free Shoe Tying with Magic Fingers

Kids learning to tie their shoes… it’s a big deal. For some parents, it may be a bittersweet time, but for others, like me, who have been tying someone’s shoes for the last 16 years (almost), it’s one more step towards independent kids. It’s beautiful.

My oldest three boys were taught to tie their shoes by their dad, so when it came time to teach Peanut, I wasn’t sure where to begin. He wasn’t at all interested in learning either.

Well, this not being my first rodeo, I’ve learned not to push the issue until he was more interested.

Except he never got more interested.

Knowing that there’s a 95% chance that Peanut will be going to public school next fall, I knew that we had to get going on this. The boy’s teacher was NOT going to appreciate him asking her to tie his shoes all day long.

A couple of days ago, I laid down the law. “Peanut,” I announced, “you have only 10 shoe ties left from me, so you’d better get interested in learning how to tie them yourself.” His brothers were instructed to give him only 5 shoe ties.

Punkin helped Peanut out by making a tying shoes practice box. He took an empty tissue box, punched holes along each side, and threaded a long, thick shoelace through them.

Then, we introduced him to our secret weapon…The Magic Fingers Method of tying shoes. While it took my other children a week or two (or maybe longer. I’m old and my memory isn’t so good anymore.) to learn to tie their shoes proficiently, it took Peanut less than 20 minutes total over two days.

The best part of this method is that the laces stay tied, and did I mention it was easy?? Go now. Save days of your life by learning this and teaching your children this method. Even Punkin has now switched to tying his shoes this way.

So see? All the cool kids are doing it.

I’m taking a vacation

Happy Friday everyone! I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas or simply a great day with your loved ones.

I’m taking a small vacation from blogging, but wanted to remind you of a couple things.

First, the Family Friday Link-up is still live! You can link-up your family friendly posts here.

Next, don’t forget to enter my giveaway for *free* wellness coaching. You can win one of 5 individual 3 month wellness coaching packages or one of 5 spots in a group wellness coaching 3 month program beginning January 20, 2014. The giveaway is below, and winners will be notified by January 3, 2014.

Also, now’s the time to start on your SMART Goals! You can read about them here (and use the free printable)!

Lastly, make sure to come back here January 1, 2014. I have another great surprise for those who didn’t win the giveaway but are still interested in letting me help Make 2014 the Year of the Best You!

New Year, New You!

Happy New Year everyone! I just love January 1. Even though it’s just a date on the calendar, there’s something to be said for the feeling of optimism, starting over, and creating new goals for the year to come.

One of the most common ‘resolutions’ made is for people to lose weight. Well, I say stop making that resolution and make being healthy a PRIORITY for 2014. Make 2014 the Year of the Best You!

My giveaway for 3 months of wellness coaching just ended, and if you didn’t participate in that or didn’t win, I’ve got a solution for you.

First though, for those that are new here, let me tell you what a Wellness Coach doesn’t do:

  • A Wellness Coach doesn’t give you a plan to follow.
  • A Wellness Coach doesn’t tell you what to do.
  • A Wellness Coach doesn’t do the work for you.

A Wellness Coach does:

  • work with you to discover what YOUR version of wellness looks like.
  • listen to what that is and helps you create a goal or a series of small goals to help you reach that place.
  • guide you in creating an action plan to move you toward your goals.
  • hold you accountable in whatever form works best for you.
  • take into consideration the whole ‘you’ and looks at areas outside of wellness (relationships, career, etc) to help you discover how one area of your life may be affecting others.

Why would you need a Wellness Coach?

There are many reasons people seek the help of a Wellness Coach. The top reason is weight loss. You know the drill-you’ve tried all the fad stuff, but nothing has worked long term. Or, you just can’t seem to lose a pound no matter what you do.

Other reasons are suspicion of food sensitivities, unexplained or excessive bloating, fatigue, and ‘cloudy’ brain. Some people want help with feeding their families healthier food or encouraging their kids to eat better and move more. Some may want to address issues of sugar dependence, depression and anxiety (all of which are often related). Even others have issues that conventional medicine hasn’t been able to help with.

Perhaps you’d like the help of a Wellness Coach, but you just can’t afford the $200 a month fee.

I’ve been there. I’ve wanted to take advantage of a program so badly but simply didn’t have the money in the budget for the program fee. You’ll hear coaches of all kinds say that if you want it badly enough, you’ll find a way. Sometimes there just isn’t $200 in the monthly budget for a coach no matter how badly you want it!

I don’t want you to go into debt in order to receive coaching, and I don’t want to take advantage of people in order to make a buck.

For me, it’s not a matter of ‘charging what I’m worth’ (which is what every coach of any type is told to do). It’s about getting the message of wellness out to every working mom, stay at home mom, single mom, every woman on a budget. (And for the record, I work with men as well…especially dads!)

Here’s my solution.

I’ve reworked my coaching fees for programs purchased during the months of January and February. Instead of charging $200 a month like I have been, I am drastically reducing my monthly rates.

Here’s how it goes:

For a 6 month individual program (12 sessions), the monthly fee through January is only $75. Pay in full and the cost drops to $400. (Compare that to the regular 6 month cost of $1200!) Programs must be committed to by January 31, 2014, with the first month’s fee paid within 7 days of commitment and sessions scheduled to begin by March 30, 2014 to receive this very special price. If, after your 6 months are up, you choose to continue with coaching, the same reduced fee will apply.

For a 6 month group program (12 sessions), the rate has dropped from $100 to $50 a month. That’s only 10 lattes! Groups are done in a rotating fashion so that new clients may begin with the current group at the beginning of each month and still receive the full program. Two group times will be offered-Monday evening and Saturday morning.

For those who have won the giveaways (winners will be announced after they have accepted the prize), the above rates will also apply if they choose to continue with 3 additional months.

What if you’re not sure you’d like to purchase a full program? You can make an appointment for a complimentary 30 minute Wellness Consultation to see if we’re a good fit.

Are you ready to dive in or still needing more information?

Kalanderson Academy for the Intellectually Awesome: Homeschool Update

Since the new ‘semester’ began after our Christmas break, I thought this would be a good time to give a homeschool update.

Don’t we have a cool name for our school? The boys came up with that one.

Peanut Update:

  • Peanut is about 3/4 of the way through the Kindergarten year of ABCMouse. Some of the things on ABCMouse are way too easy for him. But, it’s good to give him some of those easier things to build his academic confidence.
  • Reading is hit or miss. He doesn’t absolutely love it, but he’s getting better. I’ve found that if I’m not consistent at this stage, he forgets many of his sight words and his reading ability diminishes quickly.
  • At math, Peanut is amazing. I’m not just saying that as his mother either:) He refuses to count on his fingers and does all his adding and subtracting in his head. He is counting by tens and fives and is moving onto twos.
  • I’ve been using a lot of packs for 3 Dinosaurs and also Royal Baloo. We’ll be using more from Royal Baloo for the second half of the year.
  • As long as there are no major life changes before next year, Peanut will continue to homeschool.

Sweet Pea:

  • By far my most challenging student this year. SP gets bored easily and often lacks focus.
  • We’re still working through the Saxon Math 7/6 book. I feel we’re behind, but we spent quite a bit of time reviewing a couple of concepts that tripped him up. It’ll all work out and he’ll know his stuff.
  • SP started out with Robinson Classic Curriculum, then went to Easy Peasy All in One Homeschool, but then made the switch to Georgia Virtual Learning for 6th Grade.
  • He is lacking on Social Studies/History right now, but I’m not too concerned about this. He’s making up for it by reading stories from different time periods.
  • SP will also continue to homeschool next year if we are still in our current city. He has said though that if we move, and if he likes the school, he wouldn’t mind going back to public school.

Punkin and Jeremy:

  • I put these two guys together because they are both on the same track with slightly different classes.
  • They are doing very well. We did change curriculum about 2/3 of the way through last semester. Both boys felt Saylor was difficult to follow with having to go to many different websites and texts/courses being in different formats.
  • They are both now also doing Georgia Virtual Learning. They are enjoying this style of learning more as everything is on one website and there are more electives to choose from.
  • Punkin is taking an Agriculture course, and Jeremy is taking an Energy course for electives.
  • The only problem with this site is that because we aren’t in Georgia, we don’t have access to exams and some texts. If the boys want to take any AP courses, we’ll have to explore other options.
  • Even though they are self-teachers, I am requiring them to report to me what they’ve done each day. I find that it’s easy for them to ignore the subjects they don’t enjoy as much (literature).
  • Both boys have reported that they enjoy homeschool and want to continue as long as we’re here. If we move, they also said that public school would be an option if they liked the school.

Overall, I am already counting our first year of homeschool a success. Sometimes the boys get on each other’s nerves (a lot of times they get on my nerves), but I have noticed that Jeremy and Punkin have learned to talk to each other about their common classes and help each other when needed.

If we do homeschool next year, I’ll make sure to find a coop or homeschool group to join. The one in this area had some issues at the beginning of the year, and I didn’t check it again until just recently. It was already too late to sign up for coop classes. We don’t necessarily need ‘socialization’ because they get that every time they leave the house, but it would be nice for the boys to know some kids their own age who homeschool.

We’ve been able to take a couple of mid-week field trips as well as long weekend trips north to visit family. The kids have really enjoyed the freedom and so have I. I like not having to get my 6 year old up super early to make the bus. I also enjoy knowing that if we don’t do something one day, we can get to it the next.

Of course there are days when I wonder what the hell I was thinking, and it feels like I’m swimming upstream. There are days when I feel I am fighting simply to get the kids to start on their school. Feet are drug. Attitudes are shitty. Yelling commences. No one is happy.

For the most part though, homeschool has been the perfect fit for our family. I don’t regret it one bit.