Tag: mother

A Detour in the Journey

February 08, 2018

Hey Everyone,

Life throws those curveballs that can either make or break a person. I have to break it to you that unfortunately the Dopey Challenge has been slightly changed. I’m taking a slight detour and postponing the finale until January 2022. You read that correctly; two years later than the original goal.

This decision was not made lightly. With any journey, it is a good thing to make sure that it is feasible for everyone involved. The reason why is mainly financial. It just isn’t going to be financially possible.

2018 is so that Husband can finish College

2019 and 2020 are to pay off debts.

2021 is to save for this journey

2022- Dopey Challenge

With the postponement of this journey, there is more opportunity to save for a grand adventure. Plus, on the good side, the boys will be 8 and 10 so they can do the 5K and possibly the 10K with me (or at least Monster can) and Husband can run the Half Marathon with me.

I have more time to train properly with more running, eating, and sleeping. All three things I absolutely love to do anyway, but I want to make sure I don’t hurt myself. More time to prepare my body for the rigorous stress it’s going to endure.

Another plus is that my niece and her guardians are going to plan on coming with us as well in 2022. In a house full of males it would be nice to have a manicure/massage with another female or two. . . All the possibilities.

Not giving up, just another detour.

See you on the other side!

 

Advertisements

A Cold Tax Season is Here

February 06, 2018

Hey Everyone,

Looks like some groundhog saw his shadow so we are getting another 6 weeks of winter. Living in Reno, NV we either get Winter or Summer, there is no in between, not really.  So I guess we are just going to be colder a little longer than usual. Others out there might have a different take on that with a foot (or two….eeek!!) of snow pelting down on them.

Also, while it is cold it is also tax season. I know many people who absolutely dread doing their taxes and wait until the very last day, Tuesday, April 17. In exactly 70 days.  Please, do not procrastinate. I beg you. If you owe something, better to get it over with and pay than to accrue interest. The government doesn’t mess around with people owing money.

Yesterday, instead of going for my scheduled 3 miles run Husband and I buckled down and submitted our 2017 taxes. It took us about a total of an hour doing it together. Over the last 5 tax seasons, we’ve gotten into a pretty good rhythm of how we do everything. During the year itself if there are any medical bills, major expenses (car for the 2017 year for us), etc. we immediately put it in the tax years file in our cabinet. Then when we’ve received our very last document needed to file (for 2016 and 2017 there were more documents needed than usual due to job changes, vehicle changes, and benefits added) we knock it out of the park in less than an hour.

Everyone has different experiences with filing. The first year Husband and I were together I was very impatient, nervous, sleep deprived (having a newborn, and also working swing shift with a full school schedule) so I just started working on it without him. Ended up royally messing everything up so Husband came to my rescue like the knight he is, and fixed everything. Since then I’ll read him the numbers while he puts them into the computer. I learned my lesson.

Now, some people may think of the money being returned by the IRS as a bonus and a reason to go on a spending spree. Probably not a good idea. The idea of having the freedom to buy what you wish not having to dream about it is such a temptation. I understand.

Instead of doing that once Husband and I find out how much of a return we are getting we break it down into a budget. Making sure that we take into account what our living budget is going to look like during the next year. Putting things in the order of importance for our survival. It wouldn’t be very good if we used our entire return to book an all expense paid vacation to Walt Disney World so than when we return we are in the same situation we were when we left.

The management of the money is going to be broken down a little differently this year than last year because of Husband losing his GI Bill in a couple of months so we need to plan for that, while we wouldn’t normally because he would be working a steady job.

First: Replenish our emergency fund

Second: Put aside 2-3 months of rent

Third: Pay off the rest of Monster’s surgery bill.

Fourth: Pay off a low balanced credit card

Fifth: $50 for Dinner

These are our priorities this year. I know that this will look different for everyone but to give you an idea. While I did say that it isn’t recommended that you go crazy and spend it all on a brand new, unnecessary television, or the latest iPhone you could. It’s your money. Be responsible.

That being said every year husband and I budget out the last $50 to go on a date. It’s something simple that works for both of us so that we can do something “fun” together.

See you on the other side

 

January 2018 Update

January 2018 Update

February 1, 2018

Hey Everyone,

I can’t believe that 1/12 of the year is already over. Seems like yesterday that it was the stroke of midnight welcoming in a brand new year with lots of things to accomplish. While there have been many strides forward during this month to kick off the 2018 year, there have been a couple setbacks.  As with any journey we keep pushing through to reach the finish line.

Husband and I reevaluated our financial situation for this upcoming 2018 year, especially since he is losing his GI Benefits in May and we needed to figure out how to pay for his summer classes and then the last semester of college for him. At first, it was going to be so constricting that we would have been having absolutely no room to breath, not even a penny could be squeezed out anymore.

After our conversation, we found some breathing room with him filing his FASFA for his last semester early. We just needed to figure out how to pay for the last three weeks of the current semester, summer classes and books for those times Which would have still caused it to be tight but breathable. Another windfall came as well in the form of my in-laws. Goodness, I love them. They kinda knew that with the loss of the GI Bill that we were going to have some difficulties so they gave us some money to finish paying the last three weeks of this semester, and then books for the summer. Now we just need to put aside money for books for the last semester at the University of Nevada, Reno. Much easier to come up with $500-$750 for books than an extra $6,000+.

We celebrated a whole year of braces for me, a successful eye surgery for Monster, and I even got a small promotion at work, and Husband is working on a promotion at his job. We even dropped my youngest down to two partial days at daycare to cut some daycare costs.

With all this stress and more “free time” since there isn’t as much overtime at my job at the moment (still an extra 12-20 hours a week, but less than what I did during OEP) I’ve been able to hit the streets more often. During the month of January, I’ve accumulated 36 miles under my feet. Yup, only 36. Those miles certainly feel fantastic right now. I’m only 7% accomplished with my goal of 500, but I’m slow and steady. I do not want a medical bill to worry about during this year. That can wait for a time of never.

January 36-500 miles

How about you? Did you accomplish any of your 2018 goals? Was it as hard as you thought it would be? Tell me in the comments.

Also, whoever can guess correctly the number of running miles completed by the end of February will get a special gift from me. Give me your best guess. Who knows? You might be a winner.

See you on the other side.

Cross-Eyed Life

January 30, 2018

Hey Everyone,

I am sorry for not posting the last few days. Life has been in one of those upheavals. Last Thursday my oldest son had eye surgery to correct his Strabismus. This is a condition in which his eyes did not align properly to focus on objects causing double vision, lack of depth perception, and blurred vision. He has had this condition since birth, but Husband and I didn’t notice it until he was about two when it was blatantly obvious to everyone else around us.

We should have noticed something before he turned two, but just thought it was normal for a child’s depth perception to be off like our oldest child presented. As he was moving into the different stages of development he would crawl more to the right side than straight towards an object, or when he would walk he didn’t grasp how far away an object was and would either trip or fall right into the object.

With working as an emergency dispatcher I was asked to bring my kids in to have some of the new EMT students do assessments on them for practice. The different EMT groups went around and would comment on Monster’s eyes and ask if it was normal for them to be that way. It started to freak Husband and me out so we asked the teacher what we should do since he was a registered Physicians Assistant. That was when he recommended we see an optician who then referred us to a child ophthalmologist.

He was two years old when he saw the ophthalmologist in Napa, CA where he was given a prescription for his near sidedness sight. The results were breathtaking. After putting on his glasses, the first thing he said when we walked out, “Lights on the car” about the truck parked next to us outside the office that had been there when we had arrived. We almost cried because we didn’t realize that his sight had been that bad.

There were never really any fights about putting his glasses on and keeping them on because his sight was so bad. His vocabulary exploded because he could then see the world around him more clearly.

Back to the strabismus though, we started working with the ophthalmologist in Napa, CA to do some vision therapy including eye patching and even eye drops. Unfortunately, two years into the treatment, we moved to Reno, NV and had to start over with a new ophthalmologist.

Now, he is six years old. The vision therapy didn’t work. He hated the eye patches and every time we had to put in eye drops everyone in the house would end up in tears because of the massive stress it would put on us. Monster didn’t care for it because we were purposely blurring his vision in one eye to force his left eye to work. Even though his depth perception was still way off and he saw double of everything (we didn’t realize this until we saw the new ophthalmologist in Reno and they started asking him different questions).

During this journey, he had 4 different cases of pink eye. Once in both eyes, and then three times in his left eye. I swear if anything went wrong we didn’t call the Primary Care Physician, we called his Ophthalmologist. Each time he got pink eye it got worse and worse for Monster to see, his prescription changed 6 times in 4 years. Glasses are not cheap. Especially, when for the first two years we had to pay for EVERYTHING out of pocket with us having no insurance.

This surgery was the last option for us after four years of trying every option we could think of to help correct his vision. It was not a light choice to make and we knew that as he got older it would just get more difficult for him. So Husband and I put money aside as best we could during OEP and paid the $3,000 for Monster to get his eye corrected. The surgery was the longest 2.5 hours of my life.

Even though it’s been less than a week since his surgery there has been such a difference for him. He looks at everyone and everything with both eyes together. He doesn’t have any head turning trying to decide which eye to look with. And he even says that he sees one now instead of two. His peripheral vision in his left eye is broader. I am just so amazed at what a difference this had made for him.

While this will be a lifelong journey for him, I am so glad that this happened when he was young enough to not have any lasting side effects. Even though he might need a follow-up surgery, may it be in a few months, or a couple of years, we are still here for him and want what’s best for him.

This is all part of the journey.

Have any of you had vision issues? Eye surgery? Children that have had surgery? How did you get through it?

See you on the other Side.