How we have been doing on our quest to debt freedom, since our last check-in.

It’s been awhile since I last gave a blog update on my families financial status and our struggles. I just kept pushing it off and pushing it off. Never really wanting to update you guys because there wasn’t anything worth making an update about.

I realize now, that way of thinking is both stupid and forming a wall between our relationship.

How can you get to know me if I don’t try to come forward and openly express myself?

The truth is, you can’t.

I have to bring my personal feelings, thoughts and opinions into this blog or else there’s nothing here but flavorless information.

I want more than that.

You probably want more than that.

It’s so boring to read cold scripted information without personality. You lose interest and disconnect within seconds.

Juicy, drama filled information slathered in a heaping “as real as it gets.” Is where the best context lays.

So, here I am.

a photo of myself.

Back to give updates, flavorful details and all. Because I want you to get to know me. Heck, I’d like to get to know you too. Subscribe to my emails, comment down below, join my closed Facebook group or follow me on social media. Let me know who you are and how my stories impact you. Friendships are a two-lane road. This is me, reaching out. Feel free to do the same.

As of Jan 5th, 2019

We’ve officially been civilians for 1 year. Which was also the worst year of our lives. So it’s not been unicorns and rainbows.

My daughter started kindergarten back in September, changing classes and teachers in November thanks to school overcrowding. I remember talking more about this on a past post.

In October my son had his 1st birthday and this was the month we received the last GI Bill payment to my husband. We made a Pinterest worthy party for $50 and stretched as much of that income as possible.

Then my husband decided to drive for Uber. We cleaned and prepared our truck for inspection. Bought the right paperwork, documentation, insurances.. Anything our state required. Then we got it inspected.

It Failed.

There was front driver bumper damage from where my husband hit a deer last year. Hardly visible unless you’re looking for it. But it disqualified us. To repair it would cost a few grand. We didn’t have that much.

In late November my husband got a seasonal job delivering packages with UPS where my brother works as a driver. They worked together most days and became an inseparable team. The bromance was (and still is) a little unsettling at times. Just kidding. But they are really good friends and working through this holiday stress while in a close proximity 5-6 days a week didn’t do anything but give them more inside jokes.

my husband feeding some rather large dogs while on break this holiday season.

The job ended around Christmas.

I think Christmas eve was actually the last official day my husband worked. Last paycheck deposited the 2nd week of January.

So now we’re back to being unemployed (unless you count the sole proprietor ownership of my blog and craft business.) Our only income is the $250 a month that we get for my husbands VA disability.

While he was working at UPS this winter, he kept talking about getting a job as a package handler in the warehouse. But as the month wore on, his bone fractures and back just kept hurting more and more. These are the disabilities the VA covers him for with that small joke of a paycheck.

He still managed to have perfect work attendance though. Held himself together through the pain just to bring home some money.

What did we do with the money he made?

The paychecks he earned went to 4 things.

1) Christmas plus Christmas traditions that my kids expect every year. I went as dirt cheap as possible and made it happen for $300.

2) We paid off all the remaining insurance bill on the truck for the year 2018. Unfortunately 2019’s balance is coming due soon.

3) Groceries for us. We don’t receive food stamps due to our living situation. We also don’t receive WIC or any other government assistance. For one reason or another, we don’t disqualify. Most given reason is that they take into consideration the income of everyone living in this house. And of the 7 of us, 1 specific person’s “on paper” income puts us over the top. Crazy right?

4) We are incredibly late on bills. Like, everything is in collections, the house we own in Tennessee is foreclosing soon, etc. It’s bad. But we put every dollar we could, towards trying to catch up the truck payment. Of everything we owe on, we feel vehicle transportation is the most important bill below food and health stuff. Can’t go to doctors appointments, get food, get a job, or go to our daughters school without vehicle transportation. We fell $400 shy of catching it completely. It was gut wrenching not reaching this goal.

This month (January)

We’ve both been taking turns on the 1 laptop computer we own. It’s as old as my daughter (actually a little older since we bought it while I was pregnant with her) and it’s no doubt on its last legs of life.

My husband has been using it to create a mobile game to which he hopes will provide a stream of revenue. He’s pretty much given up the idea of getting a job with any company. Which I can understand to a point considering he just tried for an entire year. Applying to jobs in 2 different states, different positions, qualifications, etc. And the only jobs he did successfully get were ones where he knew someone there. This is what 8 years of Army life, leadership roles and security clearance gets you.

Nothing.

Meanwhile, when I have access to the computer- I’m blogging. Or doing something related to blogging. Unless, I’m crafting up an order for my other business.

My daughter had to have a molar pulled because it had an infection that reached the bone underneath. We had no idea, as she’d just started complaining of pain a few days prior. Ugh, we felt so bad. The pediatric dentist told us she often sees kids with multiple infections and no signs of pain. Which helped a little on the parenting guilt we we’re feeling.

my daughter aislynn at the dentist for her visit. smiling and happy for the camera.

Luckily, the kids have free medical care at our local clinic due to our Native American heritage.

Which is one perk of being back here.

Poor girl had freaked out in the dental office when she saw her blood, thinking she was going to die. Took a while to calm her down, but by time we were in the car she was exhausted.

my daughter after her dental visit. feeling exhausted and napping in her car seat.

3 hours later and she was jumping on my bed, so it definitely didnt keep her down for long.

my daughter at Walmart in front of the fake floral pieces. smiling happy.

We took her to Walmart later that day and bought her a small plush toy for being so brave.

My son has discovered climbing.

14 months old, and now nothing in the house is safe. He has also realized how to tuck down the front of his diapers (both disposable and cloth) to allow his genitalia to pop over the top waistband and pee on anything he wants. So far, peeing on kitchen cabinets while I’m standing at the stove cooking, is his favorite.

my son and daughter in the living room where my son decided to climb onto a chair and complain.

He’s definitely a handful, but he’s making up for it.

He’s helpful at picking up laundry, dishes and trash (which makes me miss when his sister helped clean like this.) He’s also wanting to give kisses, so he often comes over and kisses me. Nothing is better than sloppy baby kisses, they totally get him off the hook for whatever mischief he got himself into.

Right now

It stinks looking at your bank app showing several hundred dollars negative. It sucks to see those credit karma emails pop up saving new missed payment or closed account. 4 people in 1 bedroom of a house when you have no money to buy things that would help organize the room, is awful. Yes, my husband, 2 children and I all share one bedroom at my parents home. 2 dressers, a queen size bed and a futon that folds down into a full size. Now add in the kid toys and you have an idea of what I’m talking about.

Here’s a few pictures to help with the imagery.

I keep the room pretty clean, to keep from feeling overwhelmed by it. But I miss the privacy of having my own room. Somewhere to escape to for a few minutes of me time.

I just keep telling myself that this is just a colorful chapter in my biography.

My biography is going to be an entire rainbow by this logic.

[tweet “I’m remaining optimistic through trials of adversity.”]

its personal, an update on our financial struggles
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