News from the Pharmacy World:

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Funny how life can change in a matter of days … sometimes hours!!

While I had a glimpse into the working world during my externship when I worked 80 hours over the course of 3 weeks at a retail pharmacy, I am suddenly finding myself working 80 hours every TWO WEEKS with no end in sight.

But that’s ok!!  I got a job offer on Monday – and was working by Tuesday!!   What motivated me most was that my first pay day will be October 31.  ;)

Seriously, I couldn’t ask for a better job … Did I mention the back story on this one?  If not, here it is:

On August 28 to be exact, I went to see our family practice doc for some immunizations and things I needed for my externship at Walgreens.  In his exam room, there was an advertisement for the pharmacy next door.  Hmmmmmmm.…I didn’t know there was a pharmacy there even though we’d used this doctor for the kids since we got to Arkansas.  Upon exiting the doctor’s office, I noted the name of the pharmacy and went home and looked them up on line.  It is a small-ish pharmacy and medical supply business with only one location in town.  I emailed the address on the “contact us” page of the website.

The next day I actually received a reply (not something I was expecting after applying for many jobs without any feedback at all).  They weren’t hiring NOW … but they might be within a month, so by all means, send in my resume’.  And at that time, I had not yet had my “career development” class online so I just submitted an old (apparently “out-dated” style) resume’ which featured my past experience more than my current knowledge (which is what you are supposed to do these days!!?  Who knew?!).

Life went on – I applied at a lot of places, checked a lot of websites for jobs, completed my externship on October 9 at 3 p.m.

At 4 p.m. I received a phone call from the pharmacy I’d applied to on August 28 saying they’d held my resume’ as promised – and would I be interested in an interview?  OF COURSE I was interested … but the catch was this:  they weren’t only looking for a part-time, as needed pharmacy technician, they were looking for a medical billing person.  I wasn’t sure if accounting/finances was still something I wanted to do, but I do know I’m good at it (or at least thorough, if nothing else!!).

So, interview on Monday, October 13.  JOB OFFER on Monday, October 20.

This week and most of next week I’ll be training as a pharmacy technician.  But after that, I will be moving into my NEW OFFICE (all mine!!  They are moving some people around and preparing it for me this weekend!!) and begin to train for my primary title:  billing manager.  Sounds fancy – and I admit it’s a little exciting to be talked to and approached as a professional, as someone with brains!!  I just hope I can live up to the expectation.  I’ve got A LOT to learn!!

But I have a future … the plan is that I work in the pharmacy one day a week and on billing issues 4 days a week for about 3 months and then we’ll re-evaluate my job.  I may take on payroll as well.

I’ll also have to work 1 Saturday a month from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.  But I’m off every Sunday and federal holiday (aside from Columbus Day, obviously, since they interviewed me that day!).  There are a few other “benefits” to this job too … to include a 3 room fitness “center” that I have access to.  ;)

So, God has answered my prayers in a unique way yet again.  HIS timing is perfect!!  Always.

By the way, my Drew passed his driver’s license test … but under Arkansas law, he can’t drive by himself until October 29 because that will be the 6 month anniversary of getting his permit.  He was a little bummed as was I – but for now, I am able to take a quick break from work to go pick the kids up from school to take them home since that is all within just a few miles of my work place.

So, that’s the news from my corner of the world.  My work “goal” is to be in bed by 11 p.m. If you know me, that won’t always be realistic, but for now, I’m ready for some sleep!!!

Thank you to everyone who prayed for my job situation!!  I’m so so thankful that this need has been provided so perfectly!!  

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Posted in every day life, Pharmacy, provision, thankfulness | 6 Comments

HHM – 10/20/14

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This may be one of my last … if not THE last Happy “Homemaker” Monday I may spend at home … However, that doesn’t mean I will quit blogging!!  It is a comforting old friend, my blog … someone I can really talk to!  ;)

Breakfast time, what is on the plate this morning::::

back to the ol’ poptart and coffee routine.

On today’s to do list::::

WELLLLLLLLLLLL, after getting a phone call this morning with a JOB OFFER, I’m off to a meeting with my potential new boss at 3:30 this afternoon to discuss the details.  :)

Until then, I’ve got laundry out the WAZOO and the kitchen is a mess after the weekend’s neglect.  Might even run the vacuum cleaner today.  MiMi is “swiffering” the wood floors and by swiffering, I mean pushing dust bunnies from one end of the living room to the other.  :-/

Currently reading::::

At Home in Mitford

On the TV today::::

nothing … except a few cartoons for MiMi

The weather outside is::::

rainy and gray … 56°F

On the menu this week::::

tonight:

FRIED CABBAGE WITH SAUSAGE

1 stick butter or margarine
1 small head of cabbage, chopped
1 small onion, chopped
1 pound smoked sausage, sliced into round pieces
1 (15 ounce) can diced tomatoes or rotel tomatoes
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Melt butter in large skillet. Add cabbage, onion, and cook on medium high for about 5 minutes stirring to keep from sticking to pan. Add remaining ingredients, cover and simmer for 20 – 25 minutes.
Makes about 8 servings.

Working on my menu so I can go grocery shopping this evening w/ hubby.

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will::::

MENU PLAN and look at our budget with my new proposed salary to give us some hope/idea of how long we’ll still be in debt!!!!  :-O  Time to start DEBT SNOWBALLING!!!! (and that’s a good thing!)

New recipe I tried, or want to try this week::::

see above:  cabbage/sausage recipe for today

Favorite photo from the camera::::

MiMi at the pumpkin patch last week (class field trip)

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Praying for::::

Thankful for a very good job offer (more than I had hoped for!!) at a local, privately-owned pharmacy and medical equipment supply business (about 2 miles from my house!!) where I’ll be doing medical billing and some pharmacy tech work … and praying for a good experience as I dive in as early as tomorrow!!  I needed a job by October; I got a job in October!!

Thankful also that a local friend has offered to watch my MiMi at her house or mine, as needed, while I work!!!!  NO DAYCARE for my baby girl – praise the Lord!!!

Praying for my friend Jen … more chemo today – a biopsy on Thursday to check on her progress.

Bible Verse, Devotional that is resonating me with at the moment::::

I Corinthians 16:14:

Let ALL that you do be done in love.

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Posted in Happy Homemaker | 3 Comments

Hodge Podge – 10/15/2014

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It’s been a while since I hodge-podged!!  Glad to be joining Joyce (and friends) again today!

1. What’s your favorite time of day? Why?

I don’t fully come alive until after 10 a.m. … I can get up and pretend to function before then, but it’s all coffee and fake smiles!

2. Waffle iron, toaster, coffee maker, mixer, blender…which small appliance would you say most needs replacing in your house?

We just got a new blender (a family gift from one of Daniel’s siblings):  a Ninja ultra (?) … anyway, best blender I’ve ever had!   I was contemplating the $19.95 Black & Decker at Walmart so this is really upscale blending for our family!!

Next up:  the toaster!

3. It’s National Grouch Day (October 15)…what’s something that makes you feel grouchy?

My daughters’ room … seriously.  I am a neat and organized person (ideally and at heart, before I had children), but my older daughter is NOT bothered one bit by a mess.

Also, being interrupted makes me cranky … which led to my life theme being “interruptions are my ministry” whether in my job or with my family.

4. Ever been to Canada? Is that a country you’d like to visit? According to Trip Advisor, the top ten best destinations in Canada are-Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal, Quebec City, Victoria, Calgary, Niagara on the Lake, Niagara Falls, Whistler, and Halifax. Which city would you most like to see?

Yes, I’ve been over the border a few times – at Niagara Falls and later when we were stationed in Washington State with the Army, we went over into Vancouver and Victoria (<–I wrote about the area in my 2014 A to Z challenge).  British Columbia is BEAUTIFUL!!!  I’d love to see Calgary and Banff.

5. What was your favorite food (or one of your favorites) when you were a child? Is that still a favorite?

I loved my Oma’s cooking – I spent every summer with her growing up.  She was an excellent German cook and Hausfrau.  I loved her cucumber salad, frikadellen (kind of mini fried meat loaves), fried potatoes, red cabbage, and the soups she made as appetizer to include Eiermuschelsuppe (Egg noodle soup).  Yes, they are still favorites – takes me right back to Oma’s kitchen!!

6. Do you cry easily?

I never used to cry much … not easily anyway.  I used to wish I could, but my strongest emotion wasn’t vented through tears but through anger, I’m sad to say.  I’ve been known to throw a thing or two across a room or slam a cabinet door.  Not proud of that.

In the last 2+ years however, God has tenderized my heart.  I’ve never cried so much in my lifetime up til now as I have in recent years.  And I haven’t just cried for our own life-changing challenges but for others – those who are suffering with illness, those who have great losses, and just sadness in this world in general (and yes, the occasional commercial if it involves a homecoming of a soldier or a tender scene!).

7. Have you started your (gasp!) Christmas shopping? If so when, and how much? If not, when will you even begin thinking about it?

Not this year … I can’t even begin to consider it right now.

My biggest issue is that ALL of our family birthdays occur around this time too – so we have children born in mid-September, early November and mid-December.  Then my birthday is also in November; and my husband was born on January 1st.  OH – and we got married two days after Christmas … so we just do all the celebrating all at once!!  It takes us the next 9 months to recover!!  ;)

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

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Posted in Hodge Podge | 5 Comments

HHM – 10/13/2014

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This day is almost over … or let’s just say I’m ready for it to be over!  It was a good day … but it has been rainy and gray and cold all weekend, and I just really want to crawl into my warm bed!  :)

But I wanted to post this HHM to wrap up my weekend and get started on the new week ahead:  today was a holiday (Columbus Day), and my husband had the day off, so we let the kids skip school today and spent the weekend with Daniel’s brother in Branson.  Came home today just in time for me to get ready for a job interview!

Breakfast time, what is on the plate this morning::::

Believe it or not, I had pumpkin spice pancakes … and somewhat liked them since they were slathered in butter and drenched in syrup!  ;)  My brother-in-law made us breakfast today.

On today’s to do list::::

Well, today is over, but we did manage to grocery shop after my job interview.

I still have A LOT of stuff to unpack.  How is it that we just go “away for the weekend” and somehow manage to take a ga-billion different bags of STUFF?!?!?!!

Currently reading::::

Haven’t been to the library in a long time so I’m starting all over again with my all-time favorite series, At Home in Mitford by Jan Karon.

On the TV today::::

sports … the Cardinals are fighting to go to the World Series again, don’t ‘cha know?!

The weather outside is::::

yucky.  cold and wet.

On the menu this week::::

I have no idea!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  :)

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will::::

This IS my few minutes to myself.  We traveled back from Branson this morning, got home around noon.  Then I had a job interview at 2 p.m. and went grocery shopping after.  Now I am just sitting here.  :)

Favorite photo from the camera::::

Sorry, no photos to share.  :-/

Praying for::::

my job situation:  I thought my interview today went well enough.  The job is NOT really what I was expecting/looking for:  it is an office/medical billing job with an expanding family pharmacy.  They already have 6 techs and just need me for fill-in or one Saturday a month … however, they need someone to help with billing because they are venturing into a more clinical type business.  I am thinking either it is the PERFECT job for me (at a desk in my own office!!?!) with limited customer contact, making almost all my own hours (the boss said I could!) as long as I got in 8 hours/day (anywhere from 7:30 a.m. through 7 p.m.) …. or it is a DISASTER for me because of all the Medicare, Medicaid, 3rd party insurance billing stuff to learn PLUS they use 3 different computer programs for various aspects of their business.  :-/   I guess for now, I’m just waiting to see if they even give me a job offer … Meanwhile, I have applications out in a bunch of different places.

My friend Jen is hanging in there right now … she’s got more chemo coming up though.  :(

Bible Verse, Devotional that is resonating me with at the moment::::

Jeremiah 29:11

11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.”

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Posted in Happy Homemaker | 4 Comments

Take a Chill Pill!

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Today was the last day of my externship commitment at the retail pharmacy.  Overall, it was a very profitable 80 hours – and I got a taste of the retail pharmacy life:  long days (although there are limits on how many hours a pharmacy tech can work in a day, at least for this chain store), weekends, and holidays (again, at this chain store).  However, there are some advantages such as days off during the week (and rotating weekends), and if you have an understanding pharmacy manager, a schedule that is somewhat flexible.

I have learned the essentials for retail pharmacy work are GOOD SHOES and good humor.  I am not 100% entirely sure that a long career in retail pharmacy work is for me … I’d much prefer working for a hospital.  However, as I told someone who recently asked me if I liked my pharmacy externship, “I don’t hate it.”  So that’s worth something!!

My favorite parts of the “job” were doing things like inventory, stocking shelves, and – for example – I spent a greater part of yesterday pulling expired or near-expired medications, which meant I touched practically every pill bottle in the entire pharmacy!   I can’t wait to have my license (I’ve applied, but it takes 3 weeks to be approved) so I can actually fill prescriptions …

Tomorrow is Friday, and I plan to TAKE A CHILL PILL and not do much more than just catch up on things around the house.  I do have to pack for the holiday (Columbus Day is still a federal holiday, right?!) weekend as we are meeting Daniel’s brother for some time away at his time share resort.

By the way, this is the thank-you gift I made for the pharmacy staff I worked with (they were a super nice, very positive group of people – I could only hope to work with such a supportive group of people in the future!):

 

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And the staff sent me off with my “pay” as well:  a “death by chocolate” cake made by one of the BEST, most famous bakeries in NW Arkansas (in my opinion!!):  Rick’s Bakery.

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On the employment front, I never got a call back from the hospital that initially contacted me last week … however, I did get a call this afternoon from a local pharmacy (privately owned) that is looking for someone who is not only a pharmacy technician BUT ALSO has accounting and payroll experience (HELLO, ME!).  My resume’ apparently stood out to them because of these reasons.  This pharmacy is fairly close to my house (right next door to my family practice doctors which is where I was when I first decided to contact them with my resume’) – and it is closed on Sundays and holidays!!  What a blessing that schedule would be!  Anyway, I have an interview on Monday afternoon.  So say a prayer for me!!  I just want God to open and close doors as only HE knows best for me.

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Posted in Pharmacy | 5 Comments

HHM – 10/6/2014

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It’s Monday again … joining Sandra for a quick HHM … I’m off to help in our school’s cafeteria soon because one of the lunch ladies’ husbands passed away yesterday.  I’m just glad I’m off from my externship today that I can go in & help.  Only 3 more days to go at the pharmacy:  Tues, Wed, and Thurs from 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.

Breakfast time, what is on the plate this morning::::

the usual.  Poptart & coffee.

On today’s to do list::::

work at the cafeteria from 10:30 to about 1 p.m.

laundry is ready to be put away or at least put into the kids’ rooms for THEM to put away.

Currently reading::::

sadly, nothing.  :(

On the TV today::::

MiMi woke up this morning somewhat disappointed/mad and stated, “I WANT TO GO TO SCHOOL!!”   Her preschool meets on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Fridays.  But since I work at the cafeteria she gets to play with the other staff kids in the school’s “teacher day care”.  Anyway, I think she is ok with watching cartoon a few minutes before we have to get ready!

The weather outside is::::

lovely!!!  Sunny, slightly nippy, very fall-like.

On the menu this week::::

I HAVE A  MENU for Monday thru Thursday when I have to go grocery shopping.  Sadly, we discovered last night that when my husband’s parents were here last weekend, they unplugged the extension cord in our garage which leads to our freezer to plug in their own extension cord for their RV.  Our freezer has been unplugged for over a week … and $50+ worth of food is ruined.  :( That kind of sets us back …  again.

Chicken-cheese-broccoli casserole

chili or chicken chili

baked potato with all the toppings

spaghetti

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will::::

Just breathe.  That’s kind of how I feel!!!!

In the garden::::

my herbs are dying AGAIN … I may give up on my dream of using fresh herbs!!

Favorite photo from the camera::::

This was my husband’s leg TWO YEARS AGO today!!  Thank God for His healing and for His provision since that time!

oct 2012

Homemaking tip::::

Just keep up with it … that is all I’m trying to do right now.  Survival!  ;)

Praying for::::

my friend Jen continues her chemo journey …

the realtor who went missing in our area last week (actually she was by Little Rock) was found dead.  So sad.  :(  They did find the man who allegedly kidnapped and killed her.

my own job search:  I got a call on Thursday from a local hospital for further information in response to my application.  The lady I spoke with said she was forwarding my application to someone in Human Resources who was out of the office until Monday … but they “may call me” on Monday (today).  Nothing like staring at the phone all day, hoping it will ring!  I would far rather work for a hospital than a retail pharmacy.

Bible Verse, Devotional that is resonating me with at the moment::::

God provides in his own way and timing.  I shared last week how God provided a need we had by showing me I’d miscalculated our checking account register in our favor.  I was checking in to our bank again on-line on Sunday because we’d bought a few groceries and been to Goodwill over the weekend … and again, my checking balance was off – in our favor!  My dad, who banks at the same institution we do, had transferred some money over to us!!  He does that every so often because my parents pay for Annie-Belle’s theater class – but he often rounds the amount up to give us a few extra dollars!

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Posted in Happy Homemaker | 2 Comments

When God Turns Your Frown Upside Down

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I already wrote and deleted a post that was an essay telling you why I hate October (it was titled “At the Corner of Sick and Sad”, a play on words of the motto of the organization I am doing my externship with currently!) …

Yeh, I know:  October is the month of cooler temperatures, bonfires (right, Melanie?!), lovely leaves, and everything pumpkin flavored…But for me it is a month of memories that I would rather forget, even while being thankful for the lessons they taught me:

October 17, 2002, I miscarried our 3rd child … a date I mourned for many years until October 2009 when I was 6+ months pregnant with our bonus blessing baby who brought my heart so much healing.

October 5, 2012 was the fateful Friday that my husband fell 18 feet from a ladder and shattered his tib-fib bones in his left leg … an injury that could have been worse but came during a time of unemployment and uncertainty, that brought 2 extensive surgeries and some major medical bills.  That story has somewhat of a happy ending … it was a time of great proving of our faith but also was – and still is – a time of miraculous provision (to the tune of $90,000 in medical bills being COMPLETELY forgiven by the University of Missouri Medical Center!!).

So, yes, many hard lessons have been learned in the month of October … and will continue to be learned.  You see, October 2014 was our deadline for when I *had to* have a job – a paying job – or else.  Or else we were out of resources, out of outs, so to speak … just plain old out of luck (if there is even such a thing!!??!!).  Over the last 2+ years, we have been rebuilding our lives and my husband’s career, very slowly, very painfully.  Day by day.  He works hard – extra weekend shifts and 16 hour days some times just to make it.  And that isn’t even really making it … it’s just survival.  We’ve had good credit, and we’ve had help from other sources and sometimes from unknown sources!!  But this October, it is all kind of gone – everyone’s sympathy for us has kind of run out … Dan’s had a job now for over 18 months – to include a small promotion … we live in a decent home again … we appear to be doing well.  And we are.  THANK YOU, Jesus!!!  But we’re not out of the woods … and I need a job.   By October.

And so, the last few days of September, I was praying for a minor miracle to provide a need we had due on October 1 … a need we didn’t know how we’d pay for (outside of asking for our parents for help, which we didn’t want to do!!).  And as September 30 came to a close, I didn’t see that need met.  I wasn’t really angry at God for not providing … our financial mess isn’t His doing really … other than leading us down a very strange path of stepping out in what we believed was faith … but the choices were all ours.

Today I woke up with still no hope in sight for our need.  Thankfully, during my 6 hours at “work” today at my externship, I was put in a little room at a computer for training because the tears were coming at weird intervals, and I had a residual headache from the migraine I had all night … I came home to try to resolve our issues but met dead ends on the phone aside from the bank deferring the due date of our bill until after next payday.  I chalked that up to our answer to prayer.  God is good, He really is!!

Later this evening, I decided to tackle our bank statement reconciliation because sometimes we live within a very few dollars of our balance!!  AND besides, reconciling bank statements is great fun, isn’t it??!  I was also puzzled that our bank account seemed to have more money in it than I thought … and to my surprise:  it does have more money in it than I thought!!  My math was wrong in my check book register – and my mistake was over a couple HUNDRED dollars in OUR FAVOR!!!  Which means, I can pay the bill I was worried about earlier today!!!  So, there – how’s that for a small miracle.  :)

And so, we go on day-by-day … dollar-by-dollar.  The lessons learned from losses being replaced by joy and tragedy turned into comedy (thus seems the script of our life!!) continue to be remembered and useful.  God is faithful.  His timing is perfect.  I just need to keep trusting that He knows what He is doing with us.  Even in October.

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Posted in provision | 5 Comments

HHM – 9/29/2014

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It’s Monday … and not only that, it is still my favorite day of the week!!  Right now it is my “day off” as I am in an externship for 80 total hours as a pharmacy technician at a retail pharmacy.  I “worked” this weekend – and last Sunday – and now I am only working Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday for the next 2 weeks – and I’ll be done (and ready to get a job, hopefully!!).

Today I’m joining Sandra again for HHM:

Breakfast time, what is on the plate this morning::::

coffee and a poptart … same old, same old (though on the mornings I’ve had to go to work, I’ve had oatmeal and a banana!!)

On today’s to do list::::

get oil changed in my van

laundry

catch up housekeeping (although my house is fairly clean from the scrubbing I gave it last Friday as my in-laws were here over the weekend!)

Currently reading::::

Enough (10 Things we should be telling teenage girls) by Kate Conner

On the TV today::::

Miriam’s cartoons

The weather outside is::::

WONDERFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!  Sunny and warm – a beautiful fall day!

On the menu this week::::

today – chicken pot pie

this week:  chili & frito “salad”, smothered pork chops (crock pot) with potatoes, and probably pasta one night (spaghetti) … and not sure what else.

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will::::

just sit and read or waste some time on fb or maybe watch a show like Criminal Minds on TV.

New recipe I tried, or want to try this week::::

none

In the garden::::

my herbs are still growing (this time).  I can’t tell if I don’t water them enough or too much?!!!

Favorite photo from the camera::::

not IN the camera … but in my pictures file from ONE YEAR AGO:

Sept 2013

Praying for::::

me to get hired somewhere – while I wouldn’t mind to work for the retail pharmacy I am doing my externship with, I also have an application in to a hospital pharmacy that might be a better fit for me (???  God only knows!!!) … and I should know if I have a chance for that job in a week or two.  Lots of little details with this hiring process to work out in God’s time (certification and license to get here SOON!)

I have a VERY SPECIFIC, personal prayer request that I need an answer to today or tomorrow!!!  It is one of those things that make you sick in the pit of your stomach even though you know SOMETHING has to work out … I just don’t know what that something is.  Yet.

My friend Jen continues to do her trial chemo treatments.  Sounds like she had a good weekend, but she takes treatments again today.

There is a real estate agent missing from our area … she went to show a house last week and disappeared (her car with her purse in it were in the driveway of the house – so it is apparently a kidnapping!!).   Also, a conservative lobbyist in MO that I knew of through our old church’s wife has been missing for months.  Disappeared in the middle of the night – without a trace.

Bible Verse, Devotional that is resonating me with at the moment::::

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Posted in Happy Homemaker | 1 Comment

Brain Dump Friday:

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After three 6-hour shifts for my externship as a Pharmacy Technician this week, I have a day off!!  I really like it so far … though there are times when our pharmacy was SO busy – people lined up at the front, people lined up in the drive-thru, and the telephones ringing!!  I am learning from some very competent people … and the motto seems to be “Be Calm and Pharmacy On”.  In school, we learned the term “pharmacy speed”, which just means moving quickly but efficiently … and I’ve seen that in action this week!!  And the people I work with do it with a smile and positive attitude, which makes all the difference in a busy work environment.

The pharmacist I am working for is great – and yesterday I found out she is a Christian as well, as the tech on duty with me yesterday is her pastor’s wife!!  I had a feeling she was a Christian … but you know how you can’t really ask in a “professional setting.”  While I doubt I will get a job at this pharmacy, at least my externship experience has been positive so far, and the staff have all been very supportive of my efforts to learn and work with them.

So, I’m learning A LOT, and I’ve also applied for my Pharmacy Technician state license, the next step in getting ready to work in the pharmacy world.  I also am incredibly thankful for a friend here who is helping me out with MiMi.  She has watched her during the times when she isn’t in pre-school for very little pay.  What a blessing she is available!!  And her daughter is 5, so MiMi has loved being with them, too.  AND I’ve avoided bigger day care expenses since I am not getting paid right now.

ANYWAY ……….. on to the heavier things of life:

Because of the upcoming changes in our lives as I enter the work world again, Daniel and I have been having some conversations about our expectations (mainly mine because I do not want to burn out again by working outside the home!).  And we’ve been discussing our kids.  Mainly our teenagers … and recently, the question is:  have we been too easy on them??

Because I am a SAHM, I just go ahead and do a lot of stuff the kids could be doing because I like to and I like it done a certain way … and I am just glad to do it for my busy family.  HOWEVER, it isn’t just that my kids aren’t doing a lot of chores (they know HOW!!  but they really have a limited amount of chores they are required to do), but the question is are they taking things … and ME … and their dad for granted??

We’ve noticed some laziness and complacency on the part of one kid.  This one disregards or excuses a lot of things that she is asked to do.  For example, getting up in the morning.  At her age, she should be doing it on her own!  But we check up on her because if she runs late, we all run late.  And she just putters along at her own speed.  Also, with chores, she does the bare minimal, which isn’t disobedience since she does her assigned tasks, but she doesn’t do more than that.  She doesn’t look around and see what else she could help with that she knows how to do (for example, a basket of laundry is in the living room for 2 days … and instead of folding it, she just moves it from one corner of the room to the other …).

Then another of our kids has decided he doesn’t like basketball any more.  His goal is to get a job … which is noble and good … but he’s been playing ball for years now, and even did the conditioning work outs over the summer.  We are at a point in the season, where if he was to quit, it would have to be now.  We are trying to get at the crux of reason he wants to quit too … and some of it is the method that his main coach uses has the opposite effect on our son!  For example, the coach will tell him he’s a terrible shooter – or he’s not giving his best at leg lifts – or he’s dribbling way too high … and by saying something negative, he’s challenging our kid to CHANGE.  However, to Drew (may as well say his name!!), all he hears is that he stinks at dribbling and he’s a lousy shooter.  You see, Drew THINKS he is working hard and doing his best.  *sigh*

I think part of his problem is discouragement … and so at first, our inclination was to NOT let him quit.  We don’t want QUITTERS in our family!!  And then we got to thinking about it.  Basketball is optional.  If we force him to stick to it, he may be miserable all season, and so will we.  He’ll never play because his coach reads his attitude.  Is it fair to the team to have a negative player in their midst??  Is it fair to the coach to have to deal with our problem?  So, now we are leaning towards letting him quit with the disclaimer that he MUST get a job and his grades need to be up-to-par (but we have to think up consequences if that doesn’t happen!!  and that can’t be making him go play basketball again – ha!).

In conclusion, we’ve decided it comes down to 2 things for us right now:  the heart and character.  BUT this is where we’re questioning our failures??!  I know a part of parenting is instilling GOOD character into our kids … and as Christians, it is instilling godly character.  And most of all, I want my kids’ hearts!!  I want them to want to do what is right because THEY want to!!  But that choice – to change or not change – is up to them … not me.  I can force outward obedience, but I can’t change their hearts.  I can only pray to that end.

This morning, an acquaintance shared that her daughter’s (teen) best friend had taken her own life last night … and that puts my own issues into perspective.  I am glad that overall, our kids seem happy and want to get good grades and enjoy life and go to church and do right.  BUT I want so much more for them!!  I want them to know what a life lived outside their own world is so much happier than just living for one’s self.  While I have zero experience with suicide, I kind of wonder if a person isn’t self-absorbed – whether in how awful their problems are  or the outward influences of, say, a bully – then suicide isn’t even an option??

Anyway … deep thoughts.  I just want my kids to be ok.  Which is what my husband and I are talking about right now – we can only do so much.  We can lecture, we can be an example, we can apologize when we make mistakes, we can spend time with our kids, we can allow them or not allow them to do things … but ultimately, we can not control how they will turn out.  There are no magic formulas, which stinks, because I am all about fair and equal cause-and-effect, and that just isn’t the case in life.  We all have choices.  God gave us a free will.  And I’m glad He did.  BUT it might be easier if kids were programmable robots?!  But it wouldn’t be nearly as interesting …  ;)

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Posted in basketball, every day life, Family, Pharmacy, sports | 6 Comments

Happy Homemaker – 9/22/2014

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It’s FALL, ya’all!!!  Actually, if you’ve known me for a while, you know my horrible secret:  while I like the changing seasons and the pretty leaves on the trees, I really don’t like Fall.  Yeh, I know … it’s not right.  (I also don’t like pumpkin-flavored stuff … sorry, un-American, I know!!)

So, if you still like me and want to be my friend despite my autumn aversion, here’s my HHM for the day!  Joining Sandra again this Monday morning.

Breakfast time, what is on the plate this morning::::

Take a BIG GUESS what I’m having … a Dunkin Donut from our newly opened DD in town????  Nope.  Bacon, eggs, and biscuits?!  Nope.  A poptart and coffee – yep!  :)

On today’s to do list::::

so, so much!!!  Laundry catch-up.  Last week was SUPER BUSY as was the weekend.  Re-cap can be read in my previous post.

Also, our 13 year old daughter has a podiatry appointment today.  While I thought she just had really bad posture, a teacher mentioned her gait/walk to me the other day …. only because she had some foot issues that caused her to walk “funny” too.  And so, at a recent sports physical I mentioned it to our pediatrician, and she agreed that Annie-Belle has no arches/flat feet that cause her to walk with her feet slanted inward (if that makes sense?).  So, she may be a good candidate for some inserts, especially for her PE class and now basketball practice. AND bless the child’s heart, her feet are size 11 wide, so good shoes (that are cute, too!) are hard to find!!  So maybe we can get some pointers on shoe shopping (I foresee $$$$$, but she is worth it!).

Currently reading::::

A book I won from a blog-  ENOUGH:  10 things we should be telling teenage girls by Kate Connors.

On the TV today::::

NOTHING.  Well, MiMi’s cartoons for a little while.

The weather outside is::::

coolest morning since May … 48°F at sunrise!  (not that I was awake, the news reported that).

On the menu this week::::

I’d better plan this out today.  I am doing an externship at a pharmacy and will be “working” from 9 am to 3 pm on Tues, Wed, and Thurs.  I know I won’t feel like cooking – so looking for crockpot ideas!!  The planning ahead part is what I am not good at.  Add this to my “to do” list for today.

If I have a few minutes to myself, I will::::

give myself a pedicure.  For my externship, I “worked” for 8 hours yesterday … and there are NO CHAIRS in the pharmacy!!!  (well, there was ONE, but it was the pharmacist’s!)  Anyway, I need a good foot massage.  :)

New recipe I tried, or want to try this week::::

this week I just want to survive without getting take-out food or pizza or whatever … so I think I’ll stick to what I know.

In the garden::::

my re-planted herbs are growing … maybe they’ll make it this time?!

Favorite photo from the camera::::

Saturday’s drive over the Boston Mountains.

 

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Homemaking tip::::

I am beginning to think that I need to give up on being creative in the kitchen right now.  While I like variety in my meals, I think we’re going to have to stick to the tried-and-true oldies for a while until I get used to not being home all day, every day.  We may just need to find a week’s meal planning that works and stick to it for a while.

Praying for::::

My friend Jen, who is on trial-drugs for her cancer.   She is at John Hopkins today (she lives in the D.C. area) for evaluation and some serious discussions with her doctors.  She developed sepsis over the weekend and was admitted to the hospital.   She is talking about end-of-life issues … like when you know you’ve fought long enough and it is time to stop treatment.

While it doesn’t seem near as serious in light of that, I am praying for a job for me – and continued provision for our finances.

(Our rent deposit came in – and let’s just say it was a horrible shock – the property manager had told me at our walk-through when we moved out that he foresaw taking about $40-60 out for “touch up paint” … and instead, they took $200!!!!  I just don’t have the gumption to call him … and our lease said the return of the deposit was at the “discretion of the landlord”.  I know I have the right to demand receipts for the work they supposedly did … and if I have time today, I may pursue it?  In fact, I may send him an email and see if I get a response.  :-/ )

Bible Verse, Devotional that is resonating me with at the moment::::

I am so blessed!!!!!

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Posted in Happy Homemaker | 8 Comments