Friday, May 29, 2009

Saved the best for last!!!

This is the best part of my story and only hope I can put into words exactly how wonderful things have been since I broke away.
So I was living on my own, working a full time job in the accounting office for an auto dealership and a part time job for a long distance phone company training their sales people. I had a friend who needed a place to live so I offered her a place to live for free and in return she watched my children in the evenings while I worked at the phone company. This worked out well but I missed my children dearly. I took both jobs in August of 2001. My youngest was six months old.
I was determined to raise my children and never get involved in a relationship again. Sure I went on dates but no man ever got a second date. My standards had changed. I did go through a wild time where I drank quite a bit and partied after work with some co-workers. I always met my date somewhere to avoid bringing anyone around my children. I did not hide the fact that I had children but I didn't want anyone to meet them.
The children's father showed up in November begging me to forgive him and I actually thought about it but quickly realized nothing had changed. I had finally gained the strength to let him know things were really over.
Part of my job was traveling to other stores collecting/delivering checks for cars we'd sold or bought. I met many people this way and am still friends with several. One day in March a guy I had met months ago in another dealership asked me out. This guy was different. He looked me in the eye when he spoke (something most men in the car business don't do) and he was smart. Not your typical car guy. I gave him my phone number and really didn't think much of it. I didn't expect him to call me. He actually called me two hours later!!! We had planned to meet at an auto show that weekend, he was working it and my son has always loved car shows. My father and I have rebuilt numerous vehicles so he comes by this honestly. My son and I went to the auto show and the new guy wasn't there. His schedule had been changed that morning. I racked it up to I had kids, he didn't and it was just too much to take on.
That was not the case as he called that night and asked me to a movie the next afternoon. He even drove an hour to pick me up and then 40 minutes to the theater. As we were pulling out of my driveway he said that my room mate had cute girls and I suddenly realized he did not know that I had 3 children! I told him they were all mine and that he could take me home if that was too much to absorb. He quickly said it wasn't a problem and off we went. We had a great time at the movie and an even better time sitting and talking over coffee. I'd never been to a Starbucks so I had no clue what to order! The conversation was easy and we both got to know each other a little better. This man was a perfect gentleman, drove me home, thanked me for the date and drove away. I really didn't expect to hear from him again since my having three children was a lot for anyone to take in. But he did call and we did go out again.
By this time my mother was getting nosey. I had never gone out with a guy twice so she wanted to meet him. I was not ready to introduce him to my family or my children. Dating was hard for us. I worked Monday through Friday. My work days started at 5 a.m. and ended at 9:30 p.m. His days off were Tuesday and Sunday. His work hours were 12 p.m. to 10 p.m. We sacrificed a lot of sleep those first few months. I'd get off work and rush to the restaraunt of choice and we'd have dinner. I would then drive an hour home to sleep and get back up at 5.
About 6 weeks later he took me to meet his parents. I was so nervous I could barely speak! We had lunch and went to their home for the afternoon. My guy rode with his mom to the restaraunt and I rode with his father. I could never have prepared myself for all the questions his father had for me. Had I been marriend? Did my children all have the same father? What were my goals in life? How do you explain to your boyfriend's father that you were married for 6 weeks to a crazy dude? Yes, I'd been married was my answer. All my children have the same father and no, he is not in the picture nor do I receive child support. As far as goals I want to raise my children by myself and continue growing in my career. I had not mentioned to my boyfriend I'd been married so that created a bit of craziness. But my boyfriend took it all very well and told me he didn't care about who or what I was in the past, that he just liked me for who I was today! Next he met my mother. She's pretty laid back and never 50 questioned him. She was just glad I was happy.
Around the middle of May we were having dinner and the conversation got very serious quickly. My boyfriend told me he could see the pain in my eyes when I left him and the pain in my eyes when I wasn't spending time with my children. Right there he asked me to move in with him! We lived almost an hour away from each other and hadn't been dating very long. I remember looking at him as though he was out of his mind. He kept telling me how he hated being away from me and wanted to be with me all the time. I reminded him of my children whom he had never met. He asked if he could come spend the night at my home that Saturday night, meet the children and spend Sunday with us. I was in shock! I asked what if things didn't work out as I'd be giving up my home. He assured me that if things didn't work out I could live in one end of the house and him in the other until we could find me a place of my own. Also he was convinced things were going to work out just fine. We'd never even said I love you to each other. Things were moving REALLY fast!!!
That next Saturday he came to spend the night with us and met my children. We had a wonderful weekend. He taught my youngest (15 months old) to eat with a spoon that Sunday. It was like a fairytale. The following week I broke the news to my family. My mother was extremely happy and my father kept saying "I don't want to have to come move you home in a U-haul." I assured him he wouldn't but didn't offer a meeting for the two of them.
That next week I put in my notice at my part-time job and began moving us. We finally got everything moved around the beginning of July. We had my father down for dinner one night so that they could finally meet. My father's opinion immediately changed and they became great friends. (I can't blame my dad for being skeptical as I had chosen a bunch of losers in my past)
The last week of August I quit my job. It was not a good situation and my boss was a horribly miserable person. She degraded me daily and I had had enough. It was Friday and she was refusing to give me my check after I had passed out everyone elses check. I told her off and called her a word that I've never used in my life and walked out. I called my boyfriend and asked if I needed to move back to my home since I now didn't have a job. He was calm and told me he was proud of me for standing up to her and not to worry about it. I thought I was dreaming! Was this guy for real???
Finding a job proved to be much more difficult than I expected. It took me about 6 weeks and the recommendation of one of my best friends to find the perfect job. An accounting job of course, but I'd be running the office myself. Life was good!
My boyfriend and I had talked about marriage after a few dates. Both of us said we couldn't see ourselves married for at least five years. I thought I was off the hook and boy was I wrong. Things were going so well. Then he informally asked me if I'd marry him on New Years 2003. I shook and begged him not to ask that question. I justified this with why ruin something that is going so well.
We both went about living our lives and were happy. I thought the discussion was over but I was oh so wrong. I got a phone call at work in March from my boyfriend asking me to be ready to go out to dinner around 6:30 and he informed me that he had a babysitter arranged. I was told to look my best and not ask any questions. I hate surprises but followed his requests and was ready to go when he arrived home. We went to dinner at a really nice place that overlooked the water, as we watched the sunset he slid a small box across the table. I asked, "what's this?" I was told to shut up and open it! LOL I did and was completely blown away! I just stared at the ring inside and before I realized it he was down on one knee asking me to marry him. This time I didn't beg him to not do this and I quickly said YES! It was still early so we drove to my father's home to tell him the good news and then to tell my mom.
He planned our wedding in 8 months! I say he planned it because I only did a few things...picked my dress, flowers, had my daughter's dresses made and picked my bridesmaid's dresses. We both picked the place to get married and where to honeymoon. It was a busy 8 months!
Our wedding was just like the fairytale our relationship had been. Everything was beautiful and I'd never been happier. We flew out to San Francisco for two days and then to Hawaii for a 7 day cruise. Due to heavy winds our cruise ported early and we opted to fly home early since we both missed the kids so bad! The kids made us signs to welcome us home and met us at the airport.
So much for living and raising my children alone. I had found my soulmate! Daycare was eating up a lot of my salary so three months later I resigned. I have been at home with the children ever since. I am living the life I always dreamed of.
All of that is a good story but it gets even better...
In January of 2007 my husband was offered a job on the east coast. He asked me how I felt about it and I told him I'd go anywhere with him. He interviewed for the job ten days later. Three days after that interview they offered him the job. He lived on the east coast for four months while I stayed in Oklahoma so that the children could finish the school year. Before he left we met with an attorney and started the adoption process. In May of 2007 he flew home and we adopted our children on May 5.
The kids and I moved out here in June and we've started fresh. This move has been so hard on us as we've never lived this far from our families but it has given us the opportunity to start our lives together as one happy family. Our marriage is stronger, our children are much happier and we've grown so much as a couple.
I'm sure to some this is all a bit too mushy but it's my blog, my life and you can always close the window if it's too much to stomach. I was once beaten down and felt destroyed on the inside. Love has restored me and my faith. Things aren't always easy. We are your average married couple but I do know that I will never again be alone in this world. I've met my soulmate! We give, respect and love each other endlessly. Our children once asked us if we were getting a divorce in the middle of one our arguements. Our answer was easy...the day we stop fighting is the day you should worry we are getting a divorce. We are two totally different people with different backgrounds. We will not always agree but we will always find common ground. Today I thank God for blessing me with such a wonderful partner and a man who loves my children as his own. One day we hope to have a child together but if that is not the plan we are content with our family.
All of that to say this...God is good ALL the time!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Last weeks recap!

On Tuesday I had a dentist appointment. Had to have a root canal and it's been extremely painful. I'm still swollen and am seeing the dentist again today.
Then Thursday came around and it was time for my injection. This one hurt a little more than the ones in the past but my back is feeling much better today.
My son made the wrestling team two weeks ago. We spent 8 hours in search of wrestling shoes. Seems everyone else made the wrestling team too. He practices three times a week and then there are matches two nights a week. This has turned my schedule upside down in the evenings. We are finally adjusting. Next quarter he is trying out for baseball.
Both of the girls are going to play softball this summer. We have registration on the 7th. I'm so glad they have both shown an interest in a sport I played. I'm excited for summer and softball games!
My parents will be here in about 6 weeks for spring break. We will be opening the pool while they're here. I'm sure that water will be freezing cold but it will not stop the kids from swimming. They'll have blue lips and try to convince me the water isn't cold! LOL
I'm off to take the kids to bus stop. With the snow and winds it is too cold to let them stand out there. That's right! The beach has a dusting of snow, 2 hour school delay and people are driving like idiots! Stay warm and have a great week!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

A few things going on in my world

I am loving this budgeting stuff with my total money makeover! Not only can I set up my budget but I can see how long it will take me to pay off all of my debt. I love it! I have needed this in my life and it is really good at keeping me motivated.
I met with the school counselor at the middle school this morning. My son is interested in an advanced science class next year. We were told in December that there would be a program he would work on at home and submit. Today that has all changed. It seems the program our school has used in the past went bankrupt so they found a new one and that one makes each child take the courses at school in addition to their core classes. The counselor is trying to get it set up as a summer school program. My son is already in advanced English but wants more. He's looking at taking a full year of German next year which is a high school credit in addition to Advanced English and Science. Okay, I'll stop bragging but I am a very proud mama.
I returned to third grade again today. The children were headed to music class. I will meet with the principal on Thursday morning and spend 45 minutes in each classroom after that. I'm hoping to find out what resources are available to assist my daughters in their education. Also possibly having them tested to make certain that there are no learning disabilities.
I had a long phone call with AT&T wireless this a.m. as well. They were calling me wanting me to pay my bill. What they got was an earful of how horrible their service is. I'm very unhappy with AT&T and the iphone in general. I have to call them back from a land line this afternoon to try to troubleshoot the problem. I think for the amount of money it costs to have two iphones that they should at least work in my home and at my husband's employment. His phone is a business phone and the two places he spends all of his time (home and work) get no reception. FYI I am waiting on a direct deposit into my account today so I'm not neglecting to pay AT&T due to this problem. Three months ago when I had a conversation with them they told me my only option was to get rid of the iphones and terminate my contract in which they planned to bill me for breaking the contract. That is NOT customer service! Wish me luck with this ;)
I hope to have some down time with the husband tonight. The hot tub is sounding really good about right now. I'm getting a haircut tomorrow morning and then we will spend the day together. The best part is we have no plans!!!
Ravn, I hope you and all your crew are feeling better. I'm praying for all of you guys!

Monday, February 9, 2009

I don't remember...

third grade be so intense. I spent all day today in my oldest daughter's class. We learned some Geometry, how to read a map, math skills in the computer lab, and several other things that have slipped my tired brain at the moment. It was exhausting and I want a nap. Of course it's time for homework so that won't be happening. The day just seemed much more crammed full of activities than I remember my third grade class being.
The past two weeks the husband and I have been working on our budget. We were told at our FPU class that it will take several months to get it all just right. I'm glad to know that because we are constantly changing ours right now. It's stressful but nice to have some real direction going on there. Another FPU class on Wednesday night and I haven't even begun my homework for last week. I'm the slacker in my own homework right now since I've been going to class with my girls for three weeks. I think I'll send them outside to play and I'll do last weeks homework while they play.
Thursday was my injection day. I had an epidural spinal injection in my L1. I don't think they are as bad now that I know what to expect. Although I've noticed I'm really sore for 3 days after the injection. I see the spine specialist in two and half weeks to re-evalute.
I hope that everyone in the blogger world is doing well this week. I see that Ravn is FINALLY home!!! Get well soon my friend. That's it for now

Friday, January 30, 2009

Blog neglect...

I'm guilty as charged. It's been so crazy around here. We have had to set up a real budget and an emergency fund. As I type this I still think "doesn't everyone do this?". I now know that most people do not budget or plan for their future. We are those type of people who just pay the bill as it comes in, buy groceries when we want something, and we dine out very frequently. That has all changed since we've begun to budget. I'm not sure I like all this budgeting but I am convinced it will get me where I want to be. Even if that is at least a year away.
I've been going to second grade and watching my daughter. I will be doing this again next week. I'm considering holding her back for a year so that she can get that feeling of mastery. Tuesday is her birthday and she has tons of surprises coming her way.
My father-in-law is arriving tomorrow since the birthday girl requested his presence. He'll be here for five days. I'm planning her a birthday party in a couple of weeks with all of her friends. This party has had to be delayed a bit since my son is taking the SCAT a week from tomorrow.
I think I've decided on a cake for her party. It's a flower pot cake with a candy made flower. Basically you take a clay pot and bake chocolate cake in it, ice it and add sprinkled oreos on top. Then I will stick a few gummy worms in. Here comes the tricky part, I need to make a flower. My thoughts so far are to dye a lollipop stick green and stick it in the cake, take the wrapper off the lollipop and use edible glue (aka sugar and corn syrup) to attach another round candy to the lollipop to make a flower. I've been searching for round candies that are colorful. I'm hoping to find some disc type candy in multiple colors. These will be made in clay pots that have each child's name on them and Happy 8th Birthday. My son has a birthday 18 days later and has requested a skateboard cake. I think I have figured out exactly how I will make that happen and will use trucks and wheels from an old board to make it look more real. I will smell like icing until March.
Anyone see that new movie Taken? It was really good but pretty intense. The husband and I saw it last night. That girl has one badazz daddy!
I think I've rattled enough at the moment. Time to make sure that everyone is getting their job done for today and start some lunch. I hope everyone has a great weekend. Enjoy watching the super bowl...I'll probably be chatting with friends and watching the commericals!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

No bike riding this week

The high today was in the mid 40's and dropped consistently the rest of the day. It's below freezing now and is supposed to be down around 17 tonight. They (meteorologist) are telling us to leave water dripping on all your faucets tonight. This is something we were accustomed to in Oklahoma but not out here. All of that to say this...IT IS COLD!
Chiropractor visits this afternoon went well. I got some muscle stimulation on my shoulder and then we headed to the grocery store. A woman we go to church with is having steroid injections tomorrow so I offered to cook for her and her family. She's a single mom and will need all the help she can get. It's not much but just one less thing she'll have to worry about tomorrow evening. For me, it feels really great to be able to help her.
Tomorrow I'll be making a surprise visit to my youngest daughter's classroom. She's having a difficult time staying on task so I'm going to sit with her in class. I'm thinking I'll have lunch with oldest daughter and then appear in the classroom for the remaining part of the day. The teacher has set up a desk for me that will face my daughter. Each time she gets off task I will be there to get her restarted. Fun! Fun! I'm headed back to second grade!
Right now I'm working on getting homework finished up for the evening and looking forward to the weekend. Hope everyone has a relaxing weekend and stays warm. Brrr

Monday, January 12, 2009

Back to Reality

 It's a new year and as I promised I'm more determined than ever to get my budget under control. We are attending Financial Peace University once a week for 13 weeks. We started this last Wednesday. We were just getting started and the power went out! LOL So we went around the room and told who we were, why we were there and what he hoped to learn from this. It was a good time with good people. I'm looking forward to next week. We are assigned homework each week to do during the week. It consists of some reading and this week we had to put down on paper a mini budget. This made me sick and I've been thinking maybe I should get a job at night so that I can be home when my children are, do homework and prepare them a healthy dinner meal. The husband hates this idea so we shall see how this month goes. 
 I ordered our AFM's boxes this month and a fruit and veggie box. I get a recipe menu from menus4moms. For a very small fee they give you two weeks of dinner menus that use your AFM box and a few extra recipes as well. A regular main box is $30 and the fruit and veggie box is $21. You cannot purchase all of that food in the grocery store for the cost that AFM charges. Their website says you can feed a family of four for a week/box. I've had better luck and been able to feed my family almost all month on two main boxes and a fruit and veggie box. Now I do have to buy a few extras for the dinner meals and stuff for the children's lunch everyday. I'll have a better idea of my grocery budget after this month. 
 Our first major step for this month (after writing out a budget) is to save $1,000 for a rainy day and put it in a savings account. We are working on that now. Our goal is to be close to credit card debt free by December 2009.  That will take a lot of frugal living to make it happen. Maybe it's unrealistic and it may change as we get further along through this course. It's a goal and that's a step in the right direction. 
 We are also trying to bundle up our t.v. internet and directv. We want to go with Verizon since FIOS is now available here but I want to keep our directv since we have dvr's with them. I may end up giving it up if the deal isn't worth it. Anyone else doing a bundle with Verizon? This is just one of the ways we are looking into to save a little extra cash each month. 
 Friday I had my second spinal injection. I spent most of the weekend on bedrest and am feeling much better today. I really hope to get quite a bit of relief now that both sides have had the injection. I see my spine specialist on the 30th of this month to re-evaluate. I plan to be riding my bike with the kids by midweek and trying out my Jillian Michaels Wii Fit game by the end of the week. I hope everyone has a great week!