Friday, June 25, 2010

The Opportunities

To work full time and be able to find an alternative is actually hard. Because for some of the time I am going to have to do full time work in addition to the alternatives I find. Which can cause a burnout of some kind.

I have discussed further with a local rep about Discovery Toys. By the sounds of it the only risk is spending the $180 to get the starter kit. Worst case scenario if it doesn't work out for me is that I simply keep the starter kit. There are no penalties. They are trying to make the process more continent wide, as currently I could sell to anyone in Canada, but not in the US.

It basically is home parties or direct people to your site to purchase the toys. I am sure I could find lots of people to look into Discovery Toys, but I am not sure how well I would be at sales. I am still deciding.

Another opportunity that has come my way is a position with Pizza 73 as a customer rep for the evenings and weekends. Best part is they allow it to be done at the comfort of your home. So I submitted my resume to them. A few days later I received a call back! I was not able to answer it, but I think they are interested! I am sure I would need to get a land line as I currently do not have one, but that is easy to do as Shaw would have a bundle for $20 a month, I'm fine with that. I called back and left a message, I should hear from them tonight *fingers crossed*.

On the home front, things are going well. It does take a lot of energy to raise a family and work full time. My body is exhausted most times, I don't even know how I keep going, but I do. I want to make my children's life the best as possible, but for me being at work the majority of my waking hours makes me feel as though I am wasting these precious first young years in their lives. I know that when baby comes, three children will be expensive to have in the day home and will take the majority of my paycheck, so it isn't worth it for the amount to bring home. We do have to consider our finances as we do have two vehicle payments. Not sure how many years are left on the car, but the van does have 4 more years. So by the time I am off maternity leave, it will be down to 3 years left. So if I do stay home, the first 3 years of not working can be a financial stress, but that is why I am looking for options to stay home.

Again, fingers crossed Pizza 73 calls back, because if I do get the job, the next step is a land line and then I have to build myself a better computer as my current laptop is just way to slow. Time to look at all the computer components I have and see what I can build from it. That or perhaps Amber and Devin might have a new computer to return the one we borrowed to them, that one will work. But unless that happens, I have to build my laptop better. I know I have a processor with HT technology... umm... for those not tech-savvy that is lingo for Hyper-Threading, before dual core ever became big. I had a Pentium 4 processor with HT, so it was a hot machine to run, literally... Now to find that other laptop and see what parts I have (I have three of the same laptop, although they vary slightly in processor and video graphics)


Thursday, June 17, 2010

Discovery Toys

Discovery Toys has been helping parents to "Teach. Play. Inspire." with our high-quality educational toys, books, games and music for over three decades

So I have come across Discovery Toys. I guess it is like Avon, Regal, Pampered Chef, Tupperware, as in there are parties you host. I know I didn't want to be involved with Avon or any of the others because I know I clearly don't have an interest in those kinds of things. I also don't purchase those kinds of products.

Although I have never bought a toy from Discovery Toys, from what I have heard by word of mouth is that the toys are a very good product. I remember being involved with a New Mom's Network group and the women were discussing Discovery toys, I believe one was a consultant. She brought in a sample toy and it looked to be of good quality.

I have expressed interest in this to a local consultant and surprisingly got a reply back right away. It is a minimal investment of $180. $40 of which is shipping costs. The starter kit includes toys for all age groups, business tools and supplies, and a free personalized website for a full three months... I assume one would need to pay for the website once the three months are over.

It is an idea that I am toying with, pardon the pun. I do know a few families with children in the age ranges, even within my own family. I think I just need to sit down with the consultant to discuss it further with her about this whole process and see if it is right for me. Who knows, I may get excited about it and maybe it is just right for me. Or perhaps it may not be, but it is too early to decide right now.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Money... Why Does it Have to be Money?

Suffice to say, it is not like we are suffering financially. We basically have enough to pay the bills, the mortgage, groceries, gas, vehicle payments, but we have nothing to live from. What I mean to say is, should we want to take a vacation somewhere, well, there simply isn’t any money for it. What money is saved is usually spent on a debt we already had, or to provide things of need we may not have had the opportunity to do so before hand.

I have been trying to find some way to stay at home, maybe make some money. I have tried setting up a website to advertise my skills as a computer technician, even put out some posters. However, didn’t get anything, not one bite. Then my search turned to the internet. Sadly, everything out there is a scam, nothing is legit. All advertise “Make $10,000 a month!” but really, that isn’t even possible. But why is it so popular? Simply put, I see it as we are money driven in our society.

We work so that we can provide for our family. But when does it end? For some, it ends up being we live to work, instead of work to live. People are slowly finding themselves working 40+ hour weeks. How much is really left for the family once you subtract your sleeping time? For me, it is not enough. When I grew up, my parents didn’t have enough money. My brother and I didn’t get all the fancy toys or brand named clothing. We didn’t go on vacations to Europe or Mexico. In fact, my parents claimed bankruptcy for as long as I can remember. So money was scarce. But there was a difference that was being made. My parents didn’t focus my brother and I on money, but on other things. With home schooling, that allowed my mom to give us the opportunities we might now have had otherwise. Our weekends were rarely spent at home because we would spend it at my grandparent’s farm, 2 ½ hours away. At times this was tiresome, but looking back on it, it was amazing. My brother and I built forts with our cousins, we’d help clean up my grandparent’s farm house and farm, we’d tag along on the quad when my parents helped fenced, was up in the grain truck during harvest time as it was being emptied, and we got to ride in the different kinds of tractors. The list could go on. But do you know what I remember most? It was our family gatherings. We had a Quonset party that I remember hanging onto my grandpa’s scooter as we went around the whole floor. Every New Year’s our whole extended family would get together for toboggan ride near the creek with a massive bonfire and fireworks at midnight. We would have dinner the next day and continue to toboggan. We gathered for every holiday there was. It was an unknowing foundation instilled in me – family is what counts.

So here I am, in a family of my own -- a wonderful loving man, two wonderful children, and a third child on the way. But what is stopping me for trying to even stay home, well, its money. Money is what our world revolves around. It is what everything is based upon. If you don’t have money you don’t excel and achieve in this world. I live in this world, but I am not of this world. I will not let money dictate the fact that family is more important than material things. I assume many might not see eye to eye on that. For some, getting their own house, to the new SUV, to the new 52in LCD flat panel, 3D TV screen is more important. Some may even defend this position. But I am not going to start a debate. If anything perhaps an eye opener for some, and for others they could care less because they simply have the money to do so. But what I am pointing out, is money is the root cause of everything we do. I hate having to live to work. And frankly, I don’t want to work anymore, for it is not appealing in any way. It is a drain on me. I waste so much energy in the workforce for an amount that my family barely makes it by on, just to come home guilty that I am too exhausted and irritated by the day’s events to even spend time with my children. In my eyes, this has to change for me, in my life. And so far, I don’t see a solution or a light at the end of the tunnel.

Life isn’t about what we gain in means of material property; it is about the relationships we make with other people, with our family. I have noticed such a falling out in our morals, which I am sure, will continue to decline. Parents are overworked and nowadays it is a two-working parent family. So what about those of us who want to stay home with our family, who know that they don’t want to be in the workforce? I’m sure we’d get looked down upon by those who think we should be the “I can do everything woman.” And listen, if you are a working parent, then that is awesome. We are each on our own life journey, a path unique to ourselves. Others will want to work and not stay home. But what about those of us who want to stay home and look after the family unit? Could not society help us out instead of continuing to make money the matter of everything?

Sadly, I don’t think society will change, but perhaps I can make a change in my own life to make the dream come true and perhaps encourage others to do the same. We can’t change anyone, only ourselves. And we can only encourage, not force, others to try the same.

I know there is no way a plan will be in place by the time this baby comes. But I hope that by the time I have to go back to work, it is then I hope that something will happen that will make the dream of staying home become a reality. It is what I long to do, I know it is something I could do so well at. It is who I feel I am to be. But again, I wish money wasn’t everything as it is today.

In Pursuit of Staying Home

I have a dream, a passion if you will. I want to stay at home with my children. To be able to get up and have breakfast ready for them, to spend time with them and take them out to places where they can learn all kinds of things, to be able to help them as they grow and not fear that they spend more time with a caregiver than with their own mom. In essence and in total, I want to be a stay at home mom/wife. This is something I simply long for.

I currently work an 8-5 day job, Monday to Friday, weekends and holidays off. I am a Technical Support Specialist for a company in Edmonton, they are known all over North America. I enjoy the work, the people and atmosphere… but something isn’t right with it, and I have been struggling for the past 4 months with these feelings.

Just some background information, I should tell you a bit more of myself in detail. I am 24 years old. I was born and raised in a small community, roughly an hour from Edmonton. I went to elementary school until the end of grade 5. Grade 6 was the first year my mom began to home school my brother and I. You see, at the end of grade 5, I had trouble reading. I didn’t know what vowels sounded like, what a long “a” was compared to a short “a”. I didn’t have many friends, was a loner I suppose. I did try to fit in with the kids, but somehow my friends would end up back-stabbing me. Grade 4 was a memorable year for that. My brother was worse off. He was literally failing, but the teachers kept passing him each grade. My mom was on the parent counsel during our last year, that was her first year being a stay at home mom/wife too. By the end of that year, she had the principal quit, but it wasn’t enough for what my brother and I were going through.

I think back on all those years I was home schooled. I was home schooled right up until graduation, and even after, I took grade 12 again just because I simply could! It wasn’t easy. I remember my brother and I often talking and wishing we were back in school, that we would have a high school dance, have friends to hang out with. But now, nearly 6 years later, I wish I took advantage of it all. I have not been influenced by my peers like those have in junior and senior high, granted I’m sure begin subjected to them could have shown me a lesson or two. But in thinking about it, I am so glad I was not in that type of atmosphere, it has given me an outlook that I know I wouldn’t have had I continued through the public school system.

In what I learned from home schooling, it wasn’t just about completing assignments and work, it was also meant to learn new things, by means I wouldn’t be able to, had I stayed in a public school. I volunteered for many things, thank my mom for that. And I learned so much from it. It even opened doors to opportunities such as singing in the 2001 IAAF Games in Edmonton. Being home schooled wasn’t just a classroom experience, it was a life experience.

I have two boys now. My oldest just turned 4 two days ago. He could start preschool this year. Next year it will be kindergarten. Graham and I are also expecting a third addition to our family at the end of this year. An event we are really looking forward to, but knowing me, I’m scared. Reason: Because now more than ever, do I not want to be in a working position. Sure, one reason is because of finances, we simply won’t be able to afford childcare for three children by the time I have to go back to work. But for me it is more than that, something so hard to put into words.

I have decided that I want to start keeping track of my journey to one day being a stay-at-home mom and wife. It is a dream, a passion which is ever so much growing. It will be an experience of ups and downs in my daily life, what my thoughts are, what I wish and long for. It will go into some philosophy and spirituality I am sure, for that is simply who I am. But for the most part, this is my journey, my pursuit in staying home.