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December Low Income Thread

post #1 of 185
Thread Starter 
I saw that nobody had made this yet, and I know that December can be a pretty rough month to have money problems. There's Christmas pressure and in a lot of areas, blistering cold.

Things have been going pretty well for my husband and I. This is the first winter that we've not had to get heating assistance OR freeze our butts off. We recently got insurance through hubby's new job (dd still gets medicaid however), and all our Christmas presents are bought. I do still need to wrap them and bake some goodies, but that's more of a laziness issue than a low income one, lol.

I wanted to donate more to the holiday helpers this year, but my car had to get four hundred dollars in repairs. In my area, and with my husband's job location, it's impossible to be without a car. We're going to send off what packages we can afford in the next few weeks. Luckily the husband picked up some weekend work to supplement and make up the car repair and losing a bit of pay because of the holiday.

I did black friday shopping but didn't buy much..a couple two dollar dvds, a picture frame collage, and a toy for dd. I helped my mom navigate the crowds. She bought me a pack of picture frames as a birthday present, which was yesterday.

I traded a tree with my sil, she really wanted a white one and I was growing a bit tired of it. The one she had needed a new stand and some lights, but I basically got a ninety dollar tree for only seventeen. I know that a real tree is best but that wasn't in the budget this year.

I hope everyone is doing well. Let's brainstorm last minute gifts and give positive thoughts about this season meeting you with joy.
post #2 of 185
happy birthday happyhats

good morning mamas!

yep.....the holidays and heating costs are freaking me out. i wish i could just relax in my home without worrying that the heat set on 60* is going to cost me a fortune. and 60 isn't really 60 in this old drafty apartment with high ceilings.

im CLOSE to being done. edie really needs a warm coat and boots (again!) i don't think thats going to happen though.

other than that i guess its all ok....

post #3 of 185
Can I join in? I've been lurking for a while now reading about all of you corageous mama's for quite a while now.

I'm Robyn (30) and have three wonderful boys J (8), C (6) and T (5). We are currently living with my family while I try and get back on my feet after a LOOONG, bitter and ridiculously expensive divorce, which is actually still going on. I am working towards paying off all my bills which feels good, but I still feel like we are always struggling. Any money that I would have been putting towards house payments and bills goes towards my line of credit (which is good) but just leaves me struggling to put food on the table, kwim? It is nice having my parents around and so at least I'm not doing it all on my own but I also don't want to feel like I'm taking advantage.

Working on putting together a Christmas for the boys...it's hard, but at least I have always tried to keep Christmas more about the people and less about the "stuff" so this year won't be much different that any other.
post #4 of 185
Well signed us up for as warm the children program to get the kids some warm hats,gloves,and some warm clothing for my older kids.

Quote:
Working on putting together a Christmas for the boys...it's hard, but at least I have always tried to keep Christmas more about the people and less about the "stuff" so this year won't be much different that any other.
Robyn79 I agree with you. We are trying to come up with some games,crafts etc. that we can do with the kids on Solstice this year.
post #5 of 185
Hi everyone, Happy December
Things here are the same, but thanks to a Christmas angel my kids will have something under the tree this year
Welcome, Robyn79.
And Happy Birthday, Happyhats!!!
post #6 of 185
Quote:
Originally Posted by cwat View Post
Things here are the same, but thanks to a Christmas angel my kids will have something under the tree this year
post #7 of 185
Hi everyone! I hope it's ok to jump in this month. This thread was my lifesaver two years ago when I was going through a tough time. And really, that tough time hasn't gone away, just changed a bit. I'm a 29-year-old single mom with a 4-year-old DD. I have been a college student since DD was born, but recently messed up badly due to a lack of studying time and have a reallllly low GPA and tons of student loan debt. I have one class remaining to my BA. Just a few days ago, DD and I lost our 2BR apt. and had to move in with my father AGAIN (this is like the 6th time this has happened). We are sharing a tiny room with boxes of our belongings and sleeping in the same bed. Unemployment in this county is close to 14% currently. I simply cannot find a job. I don't even have gas money to go get the rest of our things from the apt.

Over a month ago, I had a phone interview for a fantastic job. I then had two other phone interviews with different people followed by an in-person interview with a girl who actually flew down to interview a few people. The job would have meant a living wage (!!!), health care, and a chance to relocate to a much better area. I felt certain I was getting the job and looked into a fantastic preschool for DD and found a great apt. Well, I was supposed to know "very early" this week and have heard not a word. DD was going to the county's Head Start program but I had some major gripes with that and she is now home with me all day. We are trapped, literally. My father doesn't want us here over a few weeks.

I'm feeling completely hopeless and desolate and could really use some friends who are in the same (or a similar) boat.
post #8 of 185
Can I join I am feeling sorry for myself today. This year was going to be better for our family Dh finishes school in 2 weeks. The cost to drive 45 miles to work is killing us. I broke a tooth and wont have insurance till Jan.

Our oldest moved home and cant find a job (not sure he is really looking very hard)

Everytime I go to the store prices have gone up again feeding 6 people 3 adults 2 teens and a toddler on 75 bucks a week is driving me crazy and I like a challange.

I had a few bucks set aside for the holidays but it has dwindled away to nothing trying to keep the bills paid. Now we need tires or DH wont be able to drive to work because its going to snow any day.

Yesterday I was so depressed I wanted to crawl under a rock today I am feeling better, now I just want to crawl back to bed
post #9 of 185
Welcome Spring
I hope that December will be better than October & November :fingerscross
post #10 of 185
Can I join, I've been lurking for a while. My dh was laid off at the beginning of September. Unemployment has not been enough to keep up with the bills. We have 5 kids, we were already as frugal as we can be so there isn't anything to cut.
We are packing up and going to stay with my sister in another state until we can get back on our feet. We can only take essentials with us, we can't afford to rent a truck. This is really just devastating me
post #11 of 185
s to everyone....
post #12 of 185
Just chiming in....things were going great at the beginning of this week, I came home and found a $200 money order, the first real child support EVER paid to my ds in his life, so I went out and spent the entire $200 on him the next day/.

He needed clothes really badly, his pants were too short and his little legs were chapped from the wind blowing on them. I bought him a whole new set of clothes including some undershirts and socks that actually fit him, and a pair of boots. but the money is gone now and I have not worked for three days because he got sick over the weekend and was still running a temp yesterday. Tomorrow even if I have to give him Motrin we ARE going to work, we tried to go in yesterday and had to leave after a couple of hours because he was so miserable. I can't afford to lose a whole week's pay.

So I will have to really watch how I spend this paycheck (from yesterday) because this month will be tight what with ds being sick, and then the next pay period will be a short one as well due to Christmas break (I work at a preschool). I'm starting to hunt now for used cloth diapers; I'm thinking if I spend $20 out of each paycheck I should have enough by april. Unfortunately everyone wants to sell an entire lot of them for more than I can reasonably afford at one time. I won't have saved $150 to spend on cloth diapers until March probably, and if at that point I still don't have a single diaper in the house I'll be majorly panicking.

Thank goodness we don't celebrate christmas....if I had to buy christmas presents I would probably just bury myself somewhere until January. AFTER christmas I will go clearance shopping and buy ds some new toys.

faierierose, I'm so sorry you are facing this. Have you looked into any family shelter places near you? There is one near me that puts up whole families in regular single family dwellings (2 families to a 4 bedroom house) for up to 2 years while they get back on their feet. that way the kids can stay in their schools and so forth. there are also housing programs that will pay your rent for you for a few months and then slowly cut back on your assistance as you start to build up an income again. You may have already checked into that, I don't know. I hope things look up for you soon!
post #13 of 185
Just here and praying for all of us.

Stressing Christmas. Nothing ready and dh's pay this week looks like about 180.00 and mine MIGHT be 75.00 We have not paid rent and NEED groceries.

But we are warm, have a rrof over our heads even if we pay late, and are all healthy Also are blessed with plentiful winter gear and clothes.

to everyone
post #14 of 185
One more mama jumping in. I think I 'joined' in September, but forgot this was here. I'm glad to have found it again.
DH & I mapped out our expenses and everything looked like it was going to work out just fine, I had been working about 20 hours/wk and from home for most of it, so no child care expenses. Well, my boss got a bee in behind and decided to lash out, so now I am alloted Saturdays from 9-2p and that's it. Bye bye family day and bye bye 75% of my income .

On the plus side, getting my hours cut gave me the extra kick in the butt that I needed to get school going again. I applied and have been accepted to the adult degree completion program at the local university. So , 16 more months, I and will finally have my BA... 7 years after I started .

Hope everyone is doing well, and I am thrilled to be apart of this support group.
post #15 of 185
just poking in to say hello.

cwat

lanky......so good to see you.


have the granddaughter today. we're going to go for a busride downtown as soon as it gets dark.....there are lights everywhere:jay

thats about it
post #16 of 185
Just popping in to say hi. I'm buying a car from my great aunt and have been driving around on her plates. My plan is to register it tomorrow. I have exactly what I need to register it and DH gets paid tomorrow. I am worried if I have something else that needs to clear my account so I'm going to write the check and then deposit his money later in the day just in case.
post #17 of 185
Quote:
Originally Posted by waiting2bemommy View Post
faierierose, I'm so sorry you are facing this. Have you looked into any family shelter places near you? There is one near me that puts up whole families in regular single family dwellings (2 families to a 4 bedroom house) for up to 2 years while they get back on their feet. that way the kids can stay in their schools and so forth. there are also housing programs that will pay your rent for you for a few months and then slowly cut back on your assistance as you start to build up an income again. You may have already checked into that, I don't know. I hope things look up for you soon!
Thanks for the advice. There aren't many options around here as far as shelters go. While I really don't like what's happening a part of me is glad to be going to my sister's house. There are more options for school/training in that area and we have other family in the area as well.

We are all sick and ds3 is complaining about his ear Looks like a long day at the walk in clinic tomorrow.
post #18 of 185
subbing

At the moment, I'm feeling frustrated. I have multiple advanced degrees, but unless we move, they aren't any use to me. We manage, but only beause we have insanely low bills.

Does anyone else find themselves scoffing at the ads on tv with kids opening thousands of dollars worth of gifts on Christmas morning?
post #19 of 185
Quote:
Originally Posted by confustication View Post
subbing

At the moment, I'm feeling frustrated. I have multiple advanced degrees, but unless we move, they aren't any use to me. We manage, but only beause we have insanely low bills.

Does anyone else find themselves scoffing at the ads on tv with kids opening thousands of dollars worth of gifts on Christmas morning?
I really hate those adds right now
post #20 of 185
Even when my income was substantially higher, I wouldn't have gotten that much for my kid. It just makes me cranky that excess is now seen as the norm, while we KNOW that so many people are struggling to have even the basics right now.
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