Archive | April, 2011

Home sweet home

29 Apr

So it’s been two more weeks now. We did survive the near disaster of no money. And in looking back over the past two weeks, we did a fine job. I didn’t actually have access to my money until about 10 days. But we made it through on that little bit of actual cash I received. And I dedicated my paycheck (once it cleared) to my lawyer. Finished paying for the bankruptcy filing. And today is a new payday! Unfortunately almost all of that goes to to rent, but that is a burden I am pleased to pay.

Speaking of the rent, I was informed today that I am welcome to stay on another year. That was great to hear – me, being low self-esteem girl, did have just a tiny bit of worry that maybe my landlord wouldn’t like me, or I would have done something wrong. It was a really long and arduous adventure to find a place that would rent to me. About two years of searching, applying and being turned down time and again. It was quite disheartening. I was close to giving up. It was around that time that I did some shelter investigating. I was getting to the end of my rope. But finally I found this place. My humble abode.

And it did take some talking and almost begging and pleading to get the landlord to take a chance on me. I did make some conciliations…I couldn’t have my dog, and only one child. But I had to make it work. It felt like this was my last hope. Yet here I am, almost a year later now. I’ve said quite often that I love it here. It is home now. It is small, yet warm and homey. It is very me. Quirky. And it is mine for another year.

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Life is like a river…

15 Apr

Life is like a river, flowing smoothly at times and rapidly at others. The trick is to swim when you can and float when you can’t.

For those of you that don’t actually know me, here’s a bit of background. I am currently a mom of two teenagers. I am separated from my someday soon-to-be-ex. I moved out of our home last July after several long years of unhappiness. I love where I am now – granted, my life has been turned upside down – but really, in the grand scheme of things I am very happy.

Along with the impending divorce, is an impending personal bankruptcy. My bankruptcy keeps soon-to-be ex in the house basically mortgage free for another 18 months or so. Long enough for my girly girl to finish up high school. Which is my main concern at this point. Keeping the kids as relatively stable as possible.

So on this new journey of mine, bankruptcy (which I still owe $1000 on to complete the filing…word to the wise, don’t wait until you have $0 to file bankruptcy…you need some money to do it), single income, two kids to support, 11 year old car that is rusting out faster than I can duck tape it together, living day to day is the only way we can go. Make it through one day at a time. I find my paychecks disappearing faster and faster. And the days leading up to the 15th and the 30th are becoming more and more of a challenge as I juggle whether to get half a tank of gas to get to work or feed the kids.

This week was no different. We were scraping change together and I was really counting down the days until Friday. Payday couldn’t come soon enough. I had activity fees to pay for the schools, trying to make up a down payment for girly girl’s choir trip in the fall, graduation fees, utility bills I am behind on, the list just goes on and on. But today, the 15th, I could finally get a bit more caught up and have some breathing room.

Instead, when I went in to work this morning at the day job, I received an email saying our payroll would not be direct deposited today. There was a snafoo with the payroll and it didn’t get approved and wouldn’t be going out until Monday. I lost it. I was already overdrawn on my checking account, my daughter’s account had a whole .10 cents in it, and I had just written $75 worth of checks to my son’s school the night before in anticipation of my pay check being there today. Now what was I going to do? I had $1 in my wallet, a few coins in my car, and less than 1/8 tank of gas. It might get my back home, but today I had to pick up my son at track practice, pick up the girl, take girl for something for dinner on the way back to school for a dinner theater play that the boy and I were supposed to go to.

When I found out we wouldn’t have a paycheck until Monday, I lost it. I felt really bad about it too, but I just sobbed. I went outside and sat on the steps and sobbed. I didn’t know what I was going to do. How was I going to make it through today and what was I going to do this weekend? I had to drive my daughter to school again on Saturday and go to a neighboring town for her state choir competition. And I was supposed to be out at the schools today for the day job delivering some equipment. That was not going to happen now that I didn’t have any gas, and had no money and no paycheck to get any.

I went back inside, closed my door, and had another good cry. Took some aspirin, and got back to work. We did end up getting paper checks in the afternoon, but alas, I was not able to get any cash from the check since my account was overdrawn. Great. Weekend with no money and no prospects of cash until Wednesday now when the check clears. It was just going from bad to worse. From the bank I went to pick up my son at school. And my daughter from the old house to take to get a burger before her play. Between my $1 and my son’s $1 we got the girly a McDonald’s burger and deposited her at school.

Then my son and I set out to figure out how we were going to get some cash and some food. Tried the ATM with my business account, but no go. No cash. So we went on to Arby’s to see if we could get some food. I was really nervous ordering food not knowing if we were going to be able to pay for it. I did have a gift card that I received the day before as back payment for some work I did the last couple years taking pictures at some school dances. But it was a Visa gift card and I know those have issues when being used for gas or food – the two things, the only things, really, that we needed. So we ordered food and waited anxiously as the manager swiped the card multiple times.

Success! We were able to get dinner. (And I was super hungry since I didn’t have lunch today!) Yea for food! I relished every bite. From there we went to the school to see if we could get tickets to my daughter’s play. And that would be a big negative. Cash only, and cash, it seems is the one thing we can’t get. So unfortunately, we were turned away from the play. But in the meantime, my son and I did some window shopping and played games on our phones. We have a great time together and he really makes me laugh. He made me feel much better. We just have to remember that being broke is a temporary situation.

I spend so much time worrying that I am a disappointment to everyone. So worried that my kids will be disappointed for the things we lack. For constantly scraping for what we have. For boiling chickens instead of roasting them (did you miss those Facebook comments? 52 of them…). But I am continually amazed at the resilience of my kids. And how much we pull together. They make me feel so much better.

So my resolution to tonight is that we made it through. And we had a good night. Even after my day of worry and sobbing. Even though I wasn’t able to get any cash and we missed the play. We are all together. We are loved. And I know others care about us. When I got home tonight a friend took me to fill up my gas tank and make sure I had gas to take the girl to competition tomorrow and make it through the week until my paycheck clears. And this friend gave me cash too. To make sure we’d be okay. And we will be.

We will be.

Earth Week April 16-22

11 Apr

 

Woot! A special! We love the Earth and Earth Day and Earth Week and all things green and earthy. (Including rocks, but that’s a whole ‘nother story). So in commemoration of Earth Week coming up April 16-22 Blanket Statements is offering a special deal. Purchase any blanket and in addition to the normal blanket donation to a women’s shelter, the purchaser will also receive a special Earth Day pin-back button AND a packet of seeds! Choose from three styles of buttons as featured on the homepage and simply indicate your choice in the comment section of your order. We’ll choose a packet of seeds to surprise you!

Love the Earth!

Guest Blogger Day

10 Apr

 

How cool is that? Today we were features as a guest blogger on the website Living My MoMent. They are a small business promotion company featuring social media, web, graphic design, brand development and more. I wrote an article on the beginnings of Blanket Statements and my confusion over what exactly my business is. Blanket Statements doesn’t really fit the mainstream business classification, since we aren’t exactly a for profit, not are we a not for profit. Read the story for details.

And I am proud to announce we are a social enterprise. For purpose.

That is a business category I am proud of.

Greetings all!

8 Apr

 

 

Boy, I had a couple bad weeks there. I decided to take last week off from too much thinking. It was Spring Break at the day job which meant it is quieter than usual, but I had a couple big projects that kept me busy. I racked up quite a lot of extra hours at the office last week, but I did get to spend some time with the kids on their Spring Break. Not as much as I would have liked, and I would have loved to have taken them somewhere, but finances and unreliable car just didn’t allow it.

This week, though, everything is back to normal. It’s been a decent week at the day job, and a fun week online. Lots of new people on the Facebook page, lots of sharing links and looking at other people’s cool stuff. I’m enjoying that actually. I also connected with several more Flickr people and revamped the photos on the homepage. I’m hoping that everyone will have noticed that the photos change on the homepage. If you wait 2 minutes and then refresh your screen you will get a wonderful new photo! We have 30 photos set up now, and photo credits can be found on the Resources page. Please go visit the photographers’ Flickr pages…they are wonderfully talented people!

I am one of those “control freak” people who usually try to do everything myself, but in this instance, there is no way that I could match the photos found on Flickr. And I really enjoy browsing through the photos in search of *that* photo that speaks to me. They really do speak to me. In these cases I am all for giving up control and letting their photos do the speaking. Plus, I am all about the sharing…sharing the work of my new-found friends too. I am honored that they have given us permission to use their photos.

Let’s see…what else is new…oh yes, we have officially gained ON FIRE status on the StatupNation’s Leading Moms in Business competition. Only a couple weeks left of voting now…we are doing pretty well. There are over 25 other businesses in the on fire category, so obviously the votes still count. There isn’t any monetary award for this competition, merely bragging rights and exposure. Which is great. We need all the exposure we can get! Spread the word – share the warmth, I like to say!

 

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