Saturday, April 22, 2006

Thankful for my blessings

This past week I received three paychecks in the mail that were barely $75 altogether. I found it a little comical that putting all of them together didn't even equal $100 for several reasons. One was $45 for a story, another was $12 for mileage reimbursement, and another was $20 for an independent contractor assignment.

The good thing about this bunch of checks is that the $45 one was supposed to be $90 because the paper actually printed two stories, and the $20 one is supposed to be $30, but somehow they got the fee wrong. So everybody owes me more money.

The other good thing about it is I have another check for two stories sitting at one of my other papers, just waiting for me to pick it up. There'll probably be a checks for three stories over there before I get over there to pick them up.

The other OTHER good thing is that I bought groceries already this week and used someone else's money (well, it's mine too) to pay the utilities! The last good thing about this bunch of checks is that it is very rare that I get them that small anymore.

Isn't that great? I'm so thankful to be able to giggle about these three checks totalling $77. I remember a time in the not-too distant past where these three checks would be absolutely neccessary and every dime used to keep our lights on. I also remember a time in the very recent past when I busted my butt waiting tables for about $77 for one week. I did that for three weeks and my checks plus my tips plus some more paychecks I hoarded paid two mortgages all in one month.

It took me several months to have enough writing work and a few more months to be able to let the extra jobs I was doing on the side go. It was really tough for us then — we have always struggled financially, mostly because of the economics of the area we are in but also because we choose to live simply — but we felt very strongly about me working from home and taking care of the children. It just had to work since we didn't feel like there were too many other options. After that rough first year it seemed to work itself out and we are doing better.

This is not to say we're doing so well financially and I'm not bragging at all. I'm just thankful and blessed to be tickled at these little checks. It could all disappear tomorrow but I am most certainly thankful for my blessings today. I hope that everyone else who is determined to stay home with their children will just stick with it. It'll work out and you'll be glad you did.

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Friday, April 21, 2006

Fueling a day's work

There's no better way to fuel a day's — or night's — work than with a great cup of coffee. I get my day started with one every day and have some at night too when I have an assignment I need to get submitted.

One of my fellow coffee lover-writers, Christina Spence up in Canada, has a new blog dedicated to coffee! It's Coffee Creations and has some good recipes for some coffee treats. Be sure to check it out and add it to your feed list.

That's not all there is to Christina. Coffee-powered as she is, she has another blog that I love, The Happy Slob's Guide to Housecleaning blog with simple cleaning tricks and natural cleaning solutions designed to get us back to doing what we love most, writing and drinking coffee! It goes with The Happy Slob's Guide to Housecleaning website. Yes, I'm a happy slob myself. Whatever Christina posts about in her blog every day is the thing that I clean that day. After I have my coffee, that is.

For recipes for just about anything else under the sun and all kinds of other ideas that are useful to work-at-home writer moms, take a look at her Kitchen Crafts 'n' More blog and her Kitchen Crafts 'n' More website. I'm not a big recipe gal but the blog and site are loaded with all kinds of useful information that even a slacker like me needs.

While you are there at the Kitchen Crafts website, be sure to check out the message board and see if there is anyone familiar there.

There's also her Freelancing for Beginners site with all kinds of good tips on getting started writing.

Wow, see how much you can get done when you load up on some good coffee?

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Wednesday, April 19, 2006

The spotlight is on working moms!

A fellow work-at-home mom and message board buddy at Mommy Jobs, Kira Sandoval, has started a new blog, The Spotlight on Working Mammas.

Today the spotlight shines on me. She said it better than I could, so hop on over and check out her new blog.

Be sure to add it to your feed list and of course you can always see who's in the working mom profile of the week through my link list.

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Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Mommy Circle blog posting free work at home ecourse

This note from The Mommy Circle just came to me via email:

I just wanted to let you know, in case you haven't visited The Mommy Circle blog lately that there is a F R E E Work at Home eCourse being posted. This free eCourse will run for 7 days and cover topics including an introduction to eBusiness, working from home, eBay Profits, planning your first web site, promoting your business on a budget and more. I'm sure you'll enjoy keeping up with the course and all the very helpful information included. It is not only informative, it's encouraging. I enjoyed it very much myself. Today is Day 1 Introduction to eBusiness. Follow along with the Work from Home eCourse at

The Mommy Circle is one of the fine work at home resources I have in my listing on my writing website. Be sure to check out the site and blog and even the ecourse!

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Friday, April 14, 2006

An impromptu day off

There is so much work lined up for me to do on my schedule, plus quite a bit to do to get our house cleaned out and ready to sell, but this has turned out to be an impromptu day off.

It all started with the kids being off from school today. Since we didn't have to get up early to get ready for school, we pretty much didn't bother getting up at all. When I finally did get up it was 10 a.m. with half the morning and some good working hours gone. I spent the rest of the morning drinking coffee, making sure all the work-related messages in my email inbox were tended to, and even checking a message board or two. Around 1 p.m. I finally got dressed and had my breakfast shake.

The girls just went down for a nap (or at least a rest period) so this would be a good time to get started.

The problem is, there's so much to do I don't quite know where to start. I have several phone interviews that need to be done as well as some stories that need to be written. To prepare for selling our house and moving, we still have most of the house to go through and sort all our 10 years worth of accumulated junk. On top of that, there is the normal laundry, cleaning, and meal preparation to be done.

It's looking like the remainder of this day would better be spent like the first part of it!

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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Working at home with the kids around

Another book has been added to my growing library of all things work-at-home and writing-related. I have been reading "Writing for Quick Cash" by Loriann Hoff Oberlin and discovered that she also wrote "Working at Home While the Kids Are There, Too." Both are now in my working library.

The book "Writing for Quick Cash" contains so many practical tips that I just had to have "Working at Home While the Kids Are There, Too." I went to, my favorite place to buy and sell books and other media online and found a nearly new copy for 75 cents and bought it. It arrived today and I've only had a chance to flip through it, but I'm eager to read on helpful topics like:

  • Avoiding work-at-home scams
  • Setting working hours
  • Tax implications
  • Setting up an office
  • Advertising basics
  • Keeping up with the housework
  • Choosing childcare
  • Surviving the summer

There's lots of other great information and I can't wait to dig into it. I need all the help I can get with stuff like setting (and sticking to) regular working hours and keeping up with the mounds of dishes and laundry that need to be done!

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Thursday, April 06, 2006

Free ecourse on working from home

In one of my trips around the Internet today, I ran across a free ecourse on working from home. Take a look and see what you think:

I have downloaded it but haven't had the chance to read over it yet. Let me know what you think about it!

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