I'm so excited to begin a new year! I feel like its been wiped clean and we can begin fresh. I'm not going to lie last year was especially difficult for me. At the same time, I grew so much as a person, mother, and wife. I wouldn't have changed it for anything. Some days I feel the need to move on but then it's difficult to change a mindset that you've had for 25 years all while your surrounded by people who believe as you used to. It's not that simple. My motto for this year is:
One thing that I've tried to focus on is to...
I know it's easy to get caught up in the day to day, but when I look back in life I want to say I lived for every moment. I don't want to just exist or to endure life, I want to live every day. There will be some bad days, some great days, and some days I just want to snuggle up on the couch, watch Scandal or my Real Housewives and just eat chocolate. That's the beauty of life.
Chase and I have also set some personal financial goals. When we first got married we were just kids. I was just barely 19! I seriously cannot believe I got married that YOUNG (not that I regret it of course)....but STILL! AND I thought I was getting too old! So bizarro! I'll admit when we first got married we were terrible with our money. We just spent it because we could. After we had Jayda, I was too proud to buy second hand things and as a result flushed a lot of money down the toilet. Money we didnt necessarily have or spend wisely. We both had good jobs but just were stupid.
Then Chase lost his job at State Bank of Southern Utah when his branch closed down because of the economy. I was a stay at home mom who was going to school. It was a rough time for us financially and for Chase as a provider for our family. He got a job at Red Robin but it hardly paid the bills. At the time we were already having troubles getting pregnant and I wasn't going to stop trying to get pregnant because I had no idea if I ever could get pregnant again. Some people judged us for that but honestly they can go suck an egg for all I care. Luckily by the time I got pregnant I graduated with my psychology degree and Chase got a great career opportunity and became an insurance agent for Farmer's insurance. He still works 2 nights a week as a bartender at Red Robin (makes way more than a server)because he likes it and likes the people he works with.
And recently I decided I needed to get out and started serving at Red Robin three nights a week (monday, wednesday, and Friday). I planned on getting my masters degree in social work but unfortunately there are no local options at the moment and online degrees are upwards to $50,000! I also could get a caseworker job with my bachelors degree but I find it important to not leave my kids at daycare. So when both of the kids are in school I will go back to work and school. For the moment though, I was finding myself really antsy to get out and have a break to be an adult once and awhile and we thought this was a good option.
As a result of our stupid spending early on in our marriage (and maybe even past that), we're still paying for it. Literally.
We've paid a lot of our debt off, gotten off assistance (thankfully when we needed it after Chase lost his job we got it!), and now our next goal is to save for a down payment for our own house. We're hoping by the end of the year we'll have a big chunk to put down so we'll have some equity right away.
I'm super stoked to be able to contribute financially and to see the debt going bye-bye! It's also made me realize that it's ok to go through rough patches. It's ok to get help when you need it. And working with some people who are not finacially ok, but are also some of the most hard-working people has changed my perspective. Some of the people I work with at Red Robin have two jobs, work their butts off, hardly see their kids and are still barely making it. It's given me the perspective that not everyone who takes assistance or help wants to...they HAVE to.
As far as the kiddos go...they have gotten so big!
Haven is sleeping better but still not necessarily through the night. She is teething right now and so she's pretty miserable. She's 14 months and STILL NOT walking! haha She's so freaking lazy! She's her own person and is such a little cuddler.
Jayda starts kindergarten later this year! She's so excited, but I'm sure she'll be sad to leave her friends she's had for the last couple of years. Luckily we have 4 more months before we have to worry about that. Recently her only friends on our street moved and she's had a rough time with that and has been pretty lonely. We're hoping a young family with kids moves in. She is very inquistive and loves going to the library to pick out books. She likes learning about space and she's been going through a "My Little Pony" phase. She'll do chores to earn money and will spend it at DI for little toys and ponies she finds there. She's still a bean and as always people think she's only 3, even though she's 4 1/2!
Chase is doing great at Farmers. He makes his quota every quarter and is actually getting a big raise in March. He also sold enough life insurance to win a trip to Disneyland for the two of us in September! He's a hard worker and never complains!
So that's about it for our family! Here's to a brand spanking new year!