Happy Birthday Buttercup - Welcome to Adulthood

Greetings from cyberspace!  Today is Buttercup's 18th birthday.  Yep, she is a legal adult.  But in my heart she will always be that sweet baby I gave birth to. I recently had a conversation with her regarding 'being a grown-up' and in her own words (get ready for these words of wisdom... )- 'It is so hard!' I had to smile and laugh with her.  That's right Buttercup - being a grown-up is no picnic!  I love my daughter, but in so many ways she is still a child.  She will learn.  And I pray that she will always seek God's counsel (as well as my own).  But I will see, that time and distance has been good for her relationship with her father.  They have had a strained relationship for some time.  It does my heart good that they are working on rebuilding it.

So in honor of this special day - I would like to share a few pictures... Happy Birthday Buttercup!  Mom loves you so very much!


The Boring Week I Had

Greetings from cyberspace! This week has been pretty much uneventful. There have been some good stuff that has been going on, and then some... oh well... And so with that, let's get on with my weekly recap... And as always, let's start with...

Well, she has officially registered for classes at Ozark Technical Community College. So, along with tuition and books, it pretty much ate up her FASFA amount for this semester. She will get a little back. Her and I have discussions about the amount of financial help that I will be providing. The only thing I am a bit concerned is that she is not taking care of certain items before school starts. And she only has a few more weeks until she turns 18.  Scary.. so scary. I just keep praying and praying for her.

Let me just say that I am grateful for my job, because it has kept my mind preoccupied and not allowing it to dwell on senseless crap. However, I can mention that most of this weekend will be spent working on my re-certification assessment test.

All is pretty good here. Thing were a bit crazy this week with my cousin and her family going to Vacation Bible School. The one good thing is that I would HAVE to get up early to get a shower to go to work.  This is perfect for me because I will start training Monday morning for....

Another 5K!!! Yep.. In September I am going to be joining a friend to run a 5K.  There is just one itsy bitsy problem...It is in Los Angeles!!!  Which is about a two hour drive for me! So, I just may look at getting a hotel room for the night..  I may have to reconsider and look for one closer to home.  The main point is that I need to get more serious about my exercise routine. I refuse to buy new clothes because my pants are getting tight. Oh heck no. Which provides me a segue way for my next topic.

This is an area in which I have been sort of lack luster about. Meaning, I haven't been spending money, but then again, I just am going through the motions. I really need to put an action plan together and go over my personal goals.  It is time to have a mid year tune up and get focused.  One thing I did do was close my Walmart Discover Card.  I have a regular Discover Card at a much lower interest rate..12.99 as opposed to 22.99.  That was an easy decision. I have a few other little minions that I want to cut loose, because I don't use them... There are others that I want to keep because of the rewards points, and I have been very good about not putting large amounts on them.  The only large amount I have is my Discover card, and right now, I am in the 0% interest zone until May 2015.  So, guess what will be part of the action plan.  Also, the PMSI account... My birthday present to myself is to pay that off.  My BofA Visa will be paid off in August. I have a few things going on. Which leads me to my next section....

I love the Christian worship band Casting Crowns.. and they are coming to California, and the cost of a ticket is not bad at all.  And so, my cousin, her oldest daughter and myself are going to see them. It will be a fun night. It may seem a bit of a splurge, but I being that I barely do anything, or buy anything - I am okay with spending the money to go see this group.

Well, that is all for now. Take care and see you next week!


Weekly Recap... (Or My Pathetic Attempt to Blog)

Greetings from cyberspace! Has it really been a week since I posted! Ugh.. I just get so busy during the week and at night time, I am just absolutely drained.  My only opportunity is on Saturday.  I just need to get motivated to write.  It's been hard to blog when my thoughts have been so jumbled.  So, please excuse me while I ramble.  So, here is the current status of my life...

My daughter started working at IHOP, and so far so good.  I am really proud of her. She also finally saw the light regarding her boyfriend and broke it off with him.  He was using her as an emotional punching bag, and she had enough it.  She saw me go through it with the Ex, and realized that she was going down the same path. I don't mean sound mean, but I am really glad.  Now, that does not mean that I won't worry that she will get back together with him, but I am hoping that she will be strong and don't do what I did.  She still has a few things to do for school regarding FASFA, but it is coming along.  She is trying to nail down the best living situation for herself. She doesn't have her license yet, so it is kind of tough. She is now realizing that her lack of doing the work she needed to get ready for post-graduation life is really hurting her. So, I am just waiting to see what she is going to do.  But I have decided on what to get her for her 18th birthday.  She is going to need a new computer for school.  And so that will be my gift to her.  I have told her and she knows what my budget will be.

Buttercup's Father
This is a tough situation. I have been paying spousal support for this man, longer than I should have. So, I need to inform him that it will stop in August.  Done and done.  He is going to throw a fit, because he feels that I owe him.  Well, good sir, I don't feel that I do. And I am extremely frustrated that the attorney friend of my coworker has not reached out to me. I gave her the information in January. Monday I will look at getting a consultation with another attorney.

The Ex
The Ex's youngest daughter, Blossom (who I was very close to) graduated this week.  I am kind of bummed that I was not able to go. But then again, that is the price I pay for the break up.  I miss her a lot and I miss the Ex's mother. We were pretty close. And the Ex is pressuring me to just have a 'friendship'.  Not a good idea, because I still have that physical attraction to him. But I know that it would lead me back to that vicious cycle, and I am not going back there.  And also, Buttercup would never forgive me.  She and I are almost back to having a good mother/daughter relationship.

Work and Home
It has been a challenging at work, due to a tight and there are times that I need to work on the weekend. It's really been difficult to get the time to work as there is so much to do and it just gets super busy around here. And it is just too far for me to drive in. If I lived closer to work, it would be a non-issue. And the house has been absolutely crazy with my cousin's oldest daughter and her baby living with us. It is kind of ironic in the situation. When I moved in, she was in the room I have now, and I slept on the futon and had my stuff in the garage. Now it is reversed. But the main difference is the maturity level. I cleaned up after myself, picked up the bed and kept my stuff neatly organized. She, however, wow... and I mean.. wow! And I feel bad for my cousin, because the house has been in utter turmoil because of all the stuff. Part of me wants to organize all the stuff, but her mother insists that the daughter take care of it, and she is right. It is a lesson that I can learn from when it comes to Buttercup.

I've been pretty good on not overspending. Still keeping things within budget. My biggest challenge is going to be regarding Buttercup. I know that being on her own is going to be a struggle for her, and I will try to help where I can, but I have told her that she needs to be on a budget and to not expect mom to 'rescue' her. There are some things that I will do to help out for the first year, but she also has to do her part. There is a lot of things that I have not been able to do because of being in debt due to my bad decisions regarding her and the Ex. I have a lot work to do to stay focused on paying off my debt, but I will get there. Eventually.

Social Life
Really not a lot going on here. Part of it relates to money. I really don't want to spend money to go out to the fair with some friends, or go to a baseball game with some co-workers. I'm really not interested in dating or what ever right now. That is the farthest from my mind. I really don't want to get into another romantic relationship. The last two (my marriage and subsequent long term relationship) really damaged my self-esteem and my self-worth. I still feel damaged from the Ex, and it has been over six months. However, I am hopeful that in time, I will feel ready to venture out there and perhaps meet someone to have companionship with. And right now, I just want to develop my relationship with God.

Future Plans
I have been doing a lot of praying about this. I feel that there is something waiting out there for me, but only God knows. What I do know is that when I get over emotional, that is when I do the most damage to myself and my pocket book. So, I look to scripture to help guide me. There is a lot of lessons to learn, and I am enjoying the lessons. So for now, I will just be vigilant and a good steward with my finances. It will be okay. I have a complete faith that I will be fine.

Hugs to all... Peace be with you.. Rhitter


Gearing Up for the Summer

Greetings from cyberspace! The kids are officially out of school, meaning lots of activities around here. Not that it is my financial responsibility, but I try to help out when I am able. There is not a lot of things I want to do this summer other than maybe go to the beach. I don't even care to go to the fair. We will probably spend some time at the neighbor's pool on the weekend. I need to keep my expenses down so that I can pay down my debt faster. I would like to have the BofA cleared by the end of the summer, and then I can focus on PMSI.  I still am waiting for Buttercup to see what she needs... Love, love, love this time of the year.


Being Agile

Greetings from cyberspace! At work our development team practices agile methodology to write, test and produce software, It is a great process, when used properly.  The concept is to have continual development, reviewing and grooming the plans.  Each development cycle is 8 weeks, divided in to four sprints (2 weeks each) where the last one is sort of final test.  Sort of sounds like debt management huh?  Consider this - Dave Ramsey tells us to continually look at our budget.  If it doesn't work, then some work needs to be done.  In the agile environment, we call this backlog grooming  You determine what the needs are, and make a plan around it.  That we look at the team capacity aka; points, which for budgeting is one's income.  In the agile environment, the software feature is broken up into 'stories' and the team determines the level or effort and assigns 'points'.  In budgeting, each bill is a story, and is valued at a certain dollar amount.  Now, for many people, such as myself, are paid on a bi-weekly basis.  For me, I plan my bills payment on each payday.  So, for each 'sprint' or pay period, I assign 'x' amount of money for each category, and then leave the rest alone,  It may not work for everyone, but for this gal, it keeps me on track.  And when those unexpected items come up, I'm agile -  so I can take care of it. And that my dear friends is how this girl has been rolling.


Buttercup Got a Job!

Greetings from cyberspace!  Buttercup got a job as a hostess in a restaurant.. AND she did pretty good on her college placement tests. There are a ton of things that still needs to be done, discussed and agreed upon, but her getting a job is a step in the right direction. I am very happy and proud of her.


A Grateful Heart

Greetings from cyberspace! Thank you for all your comments on my previous post. It was a tough one to write. I am still very torn on what to do with Buttercup. Unfortunately, she is not keeping in contact with me, and only calls when she needs money. It hurts. I would like for her to call and just say, 'Hi Mom.. how are you. I'm calling to check in on you.' I know it is the age, but it still hurts. I am grateful that I have my cousin and the kids that have accepted me in their home and hearts. I am also grateful for my pastor who always makes time to read my emails (speaking of, I need to send one to him). I am grateful that I have a job that I love and great co-workers. But the one person, whom I love the most (other than God and Jesus), doesn't seem to care enough to see how I am doing.  But I am grateful she is alive and okay.

Well, that is it.  Sorry for the woeful tone of this post, but I have been sad and lonely. I miss my Buttercup.