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November 2010 Low Income Support Thread - Page 2

post #21 of 105
I am trying to be positive as my ability to work is being challenged by low work in my industry as well as interference by my land lady as I work from home. I just got my family on LIHEAP and was excited to find out about LTAP for the phone.
post #22 of 105

Feeling really down. Cna not seem to get dh on same page with anything. Just want to take a long nap. Oh...and off to work now....only half of homeschool got done today. Dh is out of town til Sun.

On overload and really needing a hug.
post #23 of 105
Originally Posted by AngelBee View Post

Feeling really down. Cna not seem to get dh on same page with anything. Just want to take a long nap. Oh...and off to work now....only half of homeschool got done today. Dh is out of town til Sun.

On overload and really needing a hug.

Afm: feel better reading all the posts! Not so isolated
post #24 of 105
Originally Posted by jessaroo View Post
I am trying to be positive as my ability to work is being challenged by low work in my industry as well as interference by my land lady as I work from home. I just got my family on LIHEAP and was excited to find out about LTAP for the phone.
I just got my preapproval letter from LIHEAP in the mail. Looks like they will be paying $130 towards my electric bill in Dec like last year. I also get LIAP which take $10 off each month on top of that. It helps tremendously.
post #25 of 105
DH got fired last weekend from his crappy restaurant job. That leaves my part-time big box store job as our sole income.

The van we bought with DH's financial aid at the beginning of the semester has problems. It now won't run, some kind of idle air valve is broken. That's on top of the transmission problems it's been having. We've got to get that valve fixed before the tags expire on our little Kia in December--which has zero chance of passing emissions so we're going to sell it for scrap. Its problems are legion (blower, transmission, etc. ad nauseum) but for now it still runs.

DES wants proof that DH was fired. Hopefully when he files for unemployment tomorrow, we'll be able to get something from them, because his former employer sure won't. It'll be pulling teeth just getting his last paycheck out of them. On the up side, unemployment might be as much or maybe a little more than he was making at the restaurant, thanks to past several years' job history being factored in.

Hopefully I get a promotion at work soon--I've put in for a full-time supervisor position. Not that I want to work those hours, but we rather desperately need the money. Sigh.

Frugalmama, what kind of stuff were you looking for? We used a free downloadable phonics program, there are free math programs available online... I didn't spend much on first grade for DD (2nd either, actually).
post #26 of 105
Originally Posted by maciascl View Post
November is traditionally the month of harvest & giving thanks for the bounty so I am going to go with that and try to really focus on being grateful for what I DO have
Yeah, we had a really rough October (JUST paid the house payment and now the next is due, OUCH!) but the kids got a visit with their grandma, and we managed to stay current on all the bills. I am reading a really good book called Debt Proof Your Marriage. (I can't remember where I heard of it, maybe here, if so sorry!) and while not everything would work for us (can't save 10% of income if you don't have enough to start with....) but it helps me remember to take a more active role in planning and not just paying each bill as its due and hoping the next paycheck gets here before the next bill. Even if I can't change anything I need to not pretend its all okay and just ignore it.

My husband is started a web design business in September, and we didn't get a chance to do much last month, but he is doing some websites for a friend who is also a web designer and didn't have time to take it on. I can't wait until he can start doing this full time and start working from home.

Oh and I got a $30 gift card to Amazon for cashing in my Harris Poll points. Soon DH can get new shoes since his toes are poking out of the ones he has now.
post #27 of 105
Bills are all caught up. Feeling stressed though with the lack of consistent income. Tomorrow is "benefits review day". A nice wait up at DHS to make sure my paperwork goes in properly.
post #28 of 105
Originally Posted by Ravin View Post
Frugalmama, what kind of stuff were you looking for? We used a free downloadable phonics program, there are free math programs available online... I didn't spend much on first grade for DD (2nd either, actually).
can you post some links?
post #29 of 105
Originally Posted by saoirse2007 View Post
can you post some links?
I'm not Ravin, but here are some of the free and cheap things we use for homeschooling. DD is in 1st-2nd-3rd-4th grade (asynchronous learner):

IXL Math (free, optional membership): http://www.ixl.com/

TumbleBooks - we go through this link to get access through a library:

EdHelper.com - I LOVE LOVE LOVE Edhelper, it's not just customizable worksheets, but tons of reading materials, puzzles that cover areas not addressed in traditional curricula (critical thinking, logic, visual-spatial skills, etc.) It costs $20 for a full year.

BrainPop/BrainPop Jr. - I subscribe ($15/month) but there are quite a few free videos/activities.

Heifer International has a great (free!) Social Studies add-on curriculum/lesson planner you can order, along with a free book.

The Florida Center for Reading Research has tons of awesome printable hands-on activities for reading skills for K-5. Click "Instructional Materials for Teachers", select a grade level, and scroll down for the printable versions. http://www.fcrr.org/

There's some good stuff here:

Lots of articles on the history of music, etc., from Silver Burdett:

Custom worksheets, free: http://www.worksheetworks.com/


post #30 of 105
Hey everyone,
We make about 1100 every two weeks. It seems like a lot but we live in the DC/Baltimore corridor and it is very expensive.
I look forward to seeing what kind of great advice I can get from you ladies!
post #31 of 105
Originally Posted by frugalmama View Post
On a related note - Has anyone used The Book Samaritan to get home schooling materials? DD has gone through her Kindergarten level stuff way faster than we thought she would, and I don't have the $150 for the rest of the stuff we need for first grade. A friend online told me about it, but there doesn't seem to be much information about it online really.
What style homescholing are you doing? I will check out my links, resources, etc for first grade stuff.
post #32 of 105
Originally Posted by Ianthe View Post
OK, so in my world...

We were already low income, but now DH and I are getting divorced, and I'll be even more low income! I am planning on taking to the LDS church in my area and see if they will help me with bills until my lease is out, and I've already told my landlord. My lease ends in May, and the plan is for my sister to come up here and find a house with me.. her lease ends in May too. DH is moving out soon, and I am not going to be getting much, if any, money from him until he gets on his feet with the move (I agreed to this, because I want him OUT). I'm going to stay in school, and keep living off my student money.

.. so I am a little overwhelmed here! But, also hopeful that I can make it work and be happy again.
Wow, I am so sorry things are working out that way in your life. I hope you & your sister find something wonderful & the LDS church helps out until then.
post #33 of 105
Thread Starter 
Oh my gosh. I am so disappointed.

DH was supposed to get 40 hours a week at this new job, and hasn't seen more than 20 lately. So we were already short on rent. BUT, the landlord and two churches in my area worked out a plan, and I had to put up $240. I ask DH for it yesterday, he has no idea where it went. We have $100 left today! How do you NOT know where it went?

So, now the community ministries won't give money unless I give my part (which is completely understandable).

I just posted my computers on craigslist.

I am scrambling through my house for anything I can possibly find to save us.

I am so done with this.

Told DH I pay everything now until he starts making enough money to actually HAVE spending money.

I feel like walking out right now I'm so upset.
post #34 of 105

One of my faves is www.donpotter.net . On his education pages you'll find a variety of free downloads. We've used Word Mastery for phonics with great success, and now we've started Webster's Speller for spelling.

Also take a look at Ambleside Online, they have free curriculum outlines, as well as GuestHollow. You can pair much of their stuff with free links to downloadable ebooks and library books.

I troll used bookstores, where I've found many resources we're currently using (the ones around here have educator discounts on top of the cheapness of secondhand books), as well as the sale boards at the Well Trained Mind forums, and we use our library heavily, this year for Spanish and History especially (though I'm considering dropping history due to DD's lack of interest, and intensifying our geography studies instead, for which I have unused materials sitting around).

Has a lot of hands on math activities, and math story books you can check for at your local library.

Also check out this site for free math stuff: http://www.homeschoolmath.net/The textbook we settled on for math in 1st (after DD hated Miquon) costs $14 and can be used through 4th grade: Practical Arithmetics. One thing I like about it is that we can go slow. It's actually designed to start in 3rd grade; until the 1960's, math wasn't taught before 3rd grade. Makes it easy to not stress over it! I plan on getting us as far as finishing the 2nd chapter of the book in 2nd; we did most of Ch. 1 in 1st.
post #35 of 105
hello ladies,
long time low income mama who hasn't had much time to come back to MDC much lately. DH and I are full time students now, and live off our school $.
I would like to hear more about LTAP and LIAP??? Are these nationwide? What are these programs? The low income mamas have always helped me find so many helpful programs that make being broke not as bad as it could be, so I would love to hear more.

Also, remember when we used to post gratitudes at the end of each post? I miss those.. definatly helps keep the chin up.

We had a tough 2 weeks, dealing with probation issues, but today was much better. I got a 100% on my astronomy research paper today, and my landlord brought by some papers to fill out so that community action partners can weatherize our place for winter.
I have $0 dollars right now, but that is nothing new.
I just sold my long time collected stash of waldorf toys and the mama will come sunday to collect.. so there are a few utility bills taken care of at least.

This time of year I really worry about heat.. since we went without it a few times last winter. We are nice and toasty right now, but we have oil heat, and I'm not sure how much is left in the tank, and I know they minimum payment for them to come bring us more oil is $300. I HATE oil heat! Being in the south, you'd think it wouldn't be that cold, but last year we had to fill that puppy 3 times (when we can afford it).. so not knowing how we'll come up with some oil money right now. And LIHEAP- yeah, we just got our approval letter, don't know how much we will get this year, but last year we got $200, which of course, doesn't actually help get oil in my heater, but, I'll take the $! And what is with them sending checks in february at the END of winter??? Sure doesnt help me stay warm through the winter. LOL.
Came back to MDC to do a crafty toy swap, so at least my kids will be getting some goodies this year. I opted not to sign up for holiday helper this year, I think we can have a good holiday without it , and there isn't anything we are in desperate 'need' of. This holiday, since my kids are now old enough to 'get' it, I am planning on doing some volunteering with them instead, and keeping it very simple, and more about family then gifts. That's the plan, at least.

Anyway, for some reason I am wide awake, killing time on puter... glad to be subscribing to hear the wisdom of the low incomers, and to commiserate and listen. I see a few familiar usernames, good to see y'all are still kicking around.

ThatgirlIknew- sounds like something my dh has done in the past.. yes, take the $ and be the responsible one if you have to. I've had to do the same thing dear. I'd be P.O.'d too.

paigekitten- Harris poll points? DO tell!

Vannie- HI!! yup, it's paperwork time here, too.. bleh. I'm glad you can visit your family. I am hoping not to have dh's family come visit at all for the holidays, but i will probably lose since MIL just moved an hour away..

Ravin- so sorry your man got the boot from his job. and car troubles.. I hate car troubles! We are considering down grading from our jeep, it's about to hit 2k miles.. who knows what we'd get for it since we certainly can't make any car payments. And I really don't know a thing about car trading.. so I am putting it off... oh and fingers crossed for a promotion for you!

Angel~ BIG HUGS MAMA! hope you are doing a bit better today!

jessaroo- so sorry hon, ugh, I dislike interfering landpeople, mine drops by all the dang time w/o notice. At least today it was for something good for once.

frugalmama- yes, I hear ya on the crazy prices for swingsets/traintables. but, if you really are a frugal mama, why not try and whip up your own train table? Maybe get a free coffee table off craigslist or freecycle and then just add some trim to the edges and glue some felt on the top.. a bit o' paint.. something... then you'd have to collect the trains/tracks from somewhere.. maybe that's what you could ask for from Toys for tots. just an idea. After years of watching craigslist and wishing for our own swingset, last april I finally found a decent wooden one for only $75. It has a slide, 2 swings, teeter totter and monkey rings.. no fort, but thats ok. I then paid a guy $20 to power wash it and it looked brand new. I then hand sanded it and began staining it, and bought 2 bags of quikcrete on sale to anchor it. I ran out of stain, so it has been left half stained for a few months.. just can't seem to get the stain on the priorities list when it all goes to gas to get us to school, but some day, it will get really finished and it looks great! And oh, the bonus of sanity I get when I can kick my kids out into the back yard and they have something to occupy them! lol. Keep thinking mama, us frugal mamas can come up with some pretty cool toys when we use our creativity.

Ianthe- best of luck to you, girl!

cherrybomb- right there with you about staying caught up! and the cable/men thing.. gawd... I know that battle.. and i keep losing it.

ok, not going back another page, but hang in there mamas! If we can't be well-off, we can at least try to make our low income life as groovy as it can be.

I am thankful for heat right now, the first snow was tonight.
I am thankful my dh is home w/ me, even if probation is extended.
I am thankful for my friends' listening ear today as we took a walk at the botanical gardens while our four children ran wild in nature and could let off some steam.
I am thankful to have other low income people to talk with so I don't have to be uncomfortable talking with my higher income friends about things, (or make them uncomfortable)
post #36 of 105
frugalmama, if you are in the continental US I will send you an entire Thomas (and associated brands that fit with it) train set, like new. It was a holiday 2008 present and it's been sitting in a bag since then untouched, because the kids just don't care for trains (despite begging for one). I was going to craigslist it but the heck with that.

Please PM me with your addy if you'd like to have it. The reason I'm not PMing you right now is that other posters who see this might have individual pieces they can send you, but they won't know do to that unless they know you're getting the basic setup.

For other presents, I would totally suggest Toys for Tots. I buy for them some years and helped organize a drive one year, and I was overall very impressed with the thoughtfulness and quality of what got handed out to the families.
post #37 of 105
I'm glad I'm not the only one that has to deal with the men/cable issue, Saamy! It makes me crazy! Don't get me wrong, I enjoy TV (more than I should, I'm sure) but dh's obsession drives me nuts. Especially since he spends half his tv time complaining that there's nothing on We did go without it once for 6 months and we survived (only happened because they shut it off!) so I know he can do it. Blah. Of course he switched providers to get a better deal, so now we're stuck with it again for 2 years no matter what. Sigh. He's the same way with cell phones. Not content to pay my mom $20 a month for basic phones on her plan, so now I'm stuck struggling to pay a $140 cell phone bill every month. It's really frustrating. Of course, he refuses to handle the bank account or bills, so I guess it's easy to spend whatever he wants and leave me to try and figure out how to pay the mortgage and utilities
post #38 of 105
wow, Smithie.. that is so nice of you.. see Frugal.. your on your way! lol.

Cherry.. omg.. we go for months too b/c we can't afford it, and we are stuck watching movies or something. I do love my certain shows, but when he met me I was totally t.v. free and that is the one thing I really dislike about what we've become. Anyway, I wouldn't be able to handle the phone and ignoring utilities and stuff, though.. we just can't afford to. I used to make him pay the bills, he's pretty organized with it, but then his little games or what not would slip in and even little treats add up, so then I did them, now we pretty much tackle them together.
Do you know about safelink phones? They are free to low income folks like us.
We dont have 'real' cell phones.. and I like it that way.. I dont know how people can stand it having people able to reach you every minute of everyday and interrupt whatever is going on... but that's just me. Seems like everyone is glued to a cell phone these days.
post #39 of 105
Cherrybomb, I'd talk to your cell company about how much it would cost to break your contract, and go to prepaid. Something like $40/mo for Straight Talk for your Dh plus a cheap TracPhone for yourself (about $15/mo if you're not a heavy user) would save y'all a bundle. Even talking to the company you have about switching to one of their prepaid plans might help.

And for your cable, call and get it switched down to the cheapest basic plan they have. I'll be doing that on our DirectTV as soon as the special deal (a bunch of stuff free, incl. HBO and I just gotta get that last episode of True Blood season 3, lol) expires (or I get that missing True Blood episode onto the DVR, whichever is first). That will save us about $50 or $60/mo without breaking the contract.
post #40 of 105
Safelink isn't available in OK :sigh

Sunanthem!! Hi!! PM me your FB if you have one. I wanna see how big those littles have gotten. Can you believe our eldests are now 7??

LIHEAP is a federal program to help pay for heating/cooling. I get $130 in December for it. Now I know here in OK, they don't have the fund until Dec. 1, so you can't apply until then (I applied last year and was preapproved for this year). Call DHS to ask about it.

LIAP is actually done through your utility company. You might find the information on the website for it. DHS might also have information on that as well.

DHS went ok. New caseworker to replace my crappy one that was finally fired. The new one seems competent thus far. Crossing my fingers that my copay for daycare doesn't go up too much after the addition of my minor amount of wages from subbing.
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