Saturday, December 31, 2011

Goodbye 2011.. (review of recent past)

2011 - What a year it's been! My husband likes to call 2011 our "re-building" year. See, we went through some major tough times the past few years. Here's a recap: In 2008, I decided to quit my job to go to school full time. I had a few more semesters of graduate school left, and my husband was doing pretty well in real estate so we thought we'd give it a go on the one income. (With school loans to help of course). Bad idea.

Later on that year, guess what happened - the great economic crash of 2008. We had no clue that was going to happen. The housing market tanked, my school loan was denied for renewal, and then I got pregnant in 2009. Whoa. My husband had to go get a regular 9-5 (which he despised), our debt skyrocketed, and the dreaded collection calls began. This continued into 2010, and once my little guy was born, we were at the highest point personally (overjoyed with the birth of our son), but at the lowest point emotionally and financially.

Then in August 2010, I finally got my Master's degree and things were looking up. By November 2010, I got back into the work world and we started to feel better, but we had a lot of digging out to do in terms of our finances. Cut to 2011 - our rebuilding year. What were some of the hilights?

- My son became a toddler, and started walking, talking (sorta), and developing an amazing little personality.

- We moved from the city to the suburbs onto a quiet street on the 2nd floor of a house. (no more bad neighborhood or mean tenants!)

- I got a raise halfway through the year which helped us out a lot.

- My husband decided to go back to school full time, and thanks to his service in the U.S. Navy, his schooling is completely paid for and they also give us a housing allowance.

Looking back on 2011, it wasn't the best year we've ever had, but we're on our way (Thanks be to God). We paid off 3 out of the 7 debts we currently have, which doesn't seem like much but to us it means the world. See, this year was the first year in awhile that we paid our rent on time every single month, and paid all of our bills on time without "robbing Peter to pay Paul". We finally have a debt plan that seems to be working and we're sticking to it!

Of course, 2011 brought some rough patches between my husband and I, but with God's help, things will get better. And my weight of course CONTINUES to be the bain of my existence. (My new year "weight loss" post is on it's way) I gained 15 lbs this year, mostly weight caused by work-related stress. But I'm looking forward to making some positive changes (job-wise, marriage-wise, and health-wise) that should make 2012 that much better.

Happy New Year, friends. May this coming year bring lots of love, prosperity, and more amazing memories for all of us. God bless!

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Stream of Consciousness Sunday: Grief


It's almost 10pm. I'm sitting here in the living room. Big M is sleeping. Little M is sleeping. It's quiet. Peaceful. Yet there isnt much peace going on in my head. I'm grieving a loss. No, thankfully not of any loved ones particularly. It's more of an idea. An expectation. I'm grieving the loss of how my marriage used to be, or what I thought marriage was always going to be like. Yes I still love my husband and of course love my little son but I miss that very first year of marriage. I miss the "getting to know you" stage. And since we did everything traditionally (as Christians), we really were getting to know each other in many ways. Now, four years later, we spend hours every evening sitting next to each other, but not being present with one another. We tap on laptop keys side by side. Comment from time to time about a funny show that's playing on the TV, play with our little one on the carpet next to each other...but still feel like there's an ocean between us. The fact is, having a child changes things. It's the most rewarding thing to ever happen to a person, but at the same time, you aren't the same people that you once were. I miss our spontaneous midnight White Castle runs, romantic vacations, or even just our lazy Saturday mornings where we slept in, then (you know the rest). Now it's more of a 5:30am daily wake up by a screaming toddler - "Hi mama! Hi dada!" blasting in our ear drums. And while I love walking into my baby's room and seeing his toothy/gummy smile... I miss my husband.

This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…
■ Set a timer and write for 5 minutes only.
■ Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. No proofreading or spellchecking. This is writing in the raw.
■ Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
■ Add the Stream of Consciousness Sunday badge to your post.
■ Go visit and link up and comment on other’s posts

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Random Facts About Little ol' Me!

Hey bloggy friends,

I got this great idea from my son's future mother-in-law Mama Marchand (Yes, he's betrothed at 21 months old - don't judge.) Here are 15 questions and answers about my wacky life. :) Enjoy !!

#1. What's a nickname only your family calls you?
My family calls me Fannie. It took me awhile to accept because in elementary school I would get teased by other students and called "Fanny pack!" or "Fannie has a big fat Fanny!" *rolls eyes*

#2. What's a weird habit of yours?
I guess it's not that weird but I bite my nails. Oh, and I also play with my nose ring often, which looks like I'm picking my nose - but I'm not! HONEST!!

#3. Do you have any weird phobias?
I HATE the sound of bare hands rubbing against certain surfaces, such as a school text book or coffee table.. ughh! I can't explain it, but it's the equivalent to some people's hatred for nails on a chalkboard!!

#4. What's a song you secretly LOVE to blast & belt out when you're alone?
Recently I've been listening to old Nsync songs.. ya baby.. I totally was going to be Justin Timberlake's wife when I was 17! "Bye Bye Bye!"

#5. What's one of your biggest pet peeves?
Hate to put the hubby out there but I'm very particular about our toilet bowl. The seat has to be down and there cannot be any "evidence" of someone's recent tinkle... HMPH!!!!

#6. What's one of your nervous habits?
I smile a lot, which makes me look like a dorky kid. Hey, at least I'm not like my brother. He laughs when he's nervous.. for minutes at a time!

#7. What side of the bed do you sleep on?
The right.

#8. What was your first stuffed animal & it's name?
I had a little stuffed snoopy doll called "Snoopy".

#9. What's the drink you ALWAYS order at Starbucks?
I'm more of a McDonald's McCafe kinda gal. And right now I totally L-O-V-E the Peppermint Mocha. YUM-O!

#10. What's the beauty rule you preach.. but never ACTUALLY practice?
I would say, don't sleep in your make-up. And I pretty much do 4 days out of the 5 day work week. Yikes, that sounds really gross after typing it out. I'll have to change that right away.

#11. Which way do you face in the shower?
I face towards the water.

#12. Do you have any 'weird' body 'skills'?
Um. I could probably be fresh with this answer but I won't. (Hey I'm married! LOL)

#13. What's your favorite 'comfort food'/food thats 'bad' but you love to eat it anyways?
I have too many to count, but what I love the most is going to a Chinese Buffet and taking out a huge platter for myself. Then eating it in my car while listening to the radio. It's probably not the healthiest thing to do but I get some major "me" time and feel a lot better afterwards.

#14. What's a phrase or exclamation you always say?
"What the!" and "For Crying Out Loud!"

#15. Time to sleep - what are you wearing?
I wear one of my husband's "junk" shirts (as we like to call them) and his flannel sleep pants... er.. I think I need to go shopping cuz I'm totally bumming off the hubby!