Work

IMG_7684.PNG

This blog serves as digital documentation (for the entire world to read, if they so desire) of our journey toward living a debt-free life. So far, our journey has been incredibly challenging, but completely rewarding.

We started off our journey to financial freedom when my husband and I were both working as teachers, living in a very nice middle class suburban home, with the ability to basically spend our money however we wanted. Over time, we have learned to more fully surrender our lives to Jesus and through that we made a series of pretty radical life-altering decisions.

First, I stopped working. Not necessarily by choice. I had a rough year during my second year of teaching and was unable to find another teaching job due to my performance evaluation. Something I was truly ashamed of a few years ago, but Jesus has brought healing from both that situation and also healing of my perfectionist/performance drive, so now I can share that with you all without feeling like a failure as I once did.

A few months later, the Lord shared that we needed to sell our house and move into Waco proper. We did that and have had some financial relief due to a much lower house payment.

Then, once we moved, Josh started working like crazy. When I say “like crazy” I really mean it. The photo up there talks about a second job. Well, Josh took a second job… And a third…. And a fourth… In addition to the volunteer work he does for the a/v team at church. Not to mention, being an amazing husband and father….

One of those jobs was pretty sporadic, but the other two extra jobs have been weekly gigs. My husband, in his support of me being a stay-at-home-mom, and in support of our desire to become debt-free, basically forfeited all days of rest for weeks and even months at a time. Not because his main job can’t support us. But because he is working hard so that we can live comfortably AND get out of debt more quickly.

I have also been waiting and praying for some way to earn extra money for us to speed along our debt payoff. I originally was hoping to utilize this blog to do so, but discovered that was not the direction I wanted this blog to go.

As I have continued to pray, we have received answers and are excited to have a few new opportunities to keep pressing forward.

Friends, it’s not easy. But it WILL be worth it. We make the sacrifices now so that later, we can live in financial FREEEEEEEDOOOOOOOM!

I am so looking forward to the day when I get to post on here that we are DEBT FREE!! Keep your eyes peeled, because it may be happening soon 😁

Opening My Door…

Before I begin, I’m not trying to turn this into a super serious blog. I’ve just had a few things on my mind lately, and this happens to be a good outlet for me to express myself.

Confession: I used to be a very judgmental person.

Technically, I still am, but God is redeeming that ugly part of me, so I don’t claim it as my current identity. I also used to be obsessed with perfection, particularly in my own achievements, and am also being healed of that. But I believe my desire for perfection is what drives the judgment. High expectations of self = high (unreasonable) expectations of others.

I guess through this transformation that is taking place in my life, I am now more aware than ever of the judgment that goes on around us all. I have posted about this on my personal Facebook page, read and shared blogs on the subject, and have had countless conversations with various people about it.

The more I think about it, the more I’m realizing how we (or maybe just me) are living in this weird dichotomy of longing for authenticity, but are too ashamed of our imperfections to openly share what is really happening in our lives.

My sister and I have joked that we would post a picture of the current state of our kitchens on Facebook to see people’s reactions.

But here is my question. If I were (or we were) to be completely open and honest in these social media forums where it is so easy to project some fallacious idea of ourselves, what would be the response?

Well, I’m going to find out. This is what my kitchen looks like. right. now.

20140804-233009-84609435.jpg

20140804-233025-84625702.jpg

20140804-233042-84642672.jpg

20140804-233058-84658794.jpg

20140804-233116-84676106.jpg

20140804-233131-84691289.jpg

20140804-233228-84748197.jpg

Truthfully, the only reason it looks this good is because I spent a large portion of the day cleaning. And even though that broom has been in the corner for a week, I have yet to sweep. The bowl on the sink ledge is full of bacon grease, but we haven’t had bacon in the house in over a week. There is a pile of papers on the bookshelf that I just don’t know what to do with. There’s a lid on the floor next to the pack ‘n’ play that I’ve walked by 1,000 times today and have yet to pick it up.

The reason I share all of this is because I am guilty of both longing for authenticity but also trying to make my life look perfect on these various social media outlets (and in person, for that matter). While sharing my thoughts and opinions with people, I always consider how it will come across to others, but not in the sense that I don’t want to offend. I do it in the sense that I want to make sure I am showing that I have my life together.

These photos are a very shallow depiction of how my life isn’t perfect. From time to time, I get the energy and/or desire to get things in order and make it all pretty and ready for others to view, assuming we have scheduled that viewing with ample time for me to get everything back to a state of perfection.

But this post is me opening my front door in my pjs, no make-up, letting you into my house unannounced, and allowing you to see and think whatever you want. Will you do the same?

I am tired of the façade. Let’s be real with one another. And let’s not judge when someone’s life doesn’t meet the unrealistic expectations that we project onto others–when we probably don’t meet those expectations ourselves.

I hope that this post may help to continue the conversation about authenticity and not judging others for the things that make them human.

Love you all.

Stop The Vacation Blues, Save More Green

Originally posted on Three Peas Services:
Thinking about planning a family vacation? Are you already hyperventilating just thinking about the cost? We have compiled some of our best travel and vacation tips. From dining to lodging to entertainment, save big…