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Financially Challenged Mamas! - Page 3

post #41 of 142
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by mamamoo View Post
I am so sorry magstphil. That was mu hubby's last raise too, after they dicked around for 6 months, and changed their review policy(used to be twice a year, but they never did it on time, and now they changed it to 4 times a year, and they still are not doing them on time).


I feel for all of you mamas, I am in the same boat...but got pregnant while using condoms and dtd at a supposedly safe time, and dh freaked out, is super depressed, and was treating everyone like sh*t so I asked him to move out. And he did. I thought money was tight before. LOL He is starting to pay child support, but that is still only goign to be just over $800 a month! Not sure exactly how I am going to make that work. It seems like he has been coming around little by little lately though, we've been hanging out more, and laughing more, and he seems a little better, and not so freaked, so hopefully he'll be coming home soon...we'll see.

i am so sorry you are going through this. i really hope everything can be resolved.
post #42 of 142

I have good news... maybe

So, I thought I'd try to bring some cheer to this thread. One of DH's supervisors just told him that she's going to talk to the manager about possibly letting him work remotely after we move. So there's a chance he can keep his job for at least a little while after the move, while he's looking for a new job.

The other piece of good news is that my father is pulling strings and found a couple job opportunities for DH. One of them looks like they'll actually interview DH! (Our biggest problem on the job hunt so far is that no one seems to look at the resumes we've sent out, you don't get a job unless you know someone... thankfully, we know someone.)

We're still preparing ourselves to make this move and survive without a job for a few months if necessary, but it looks like we've got more options then we knew.

There is hope!!!

Emily
post #43 of 142
hi fellow broke mamas!

i grew up very poor, so i'm pretty used to the struggle and most days i'm fine with it. other days, it gets damn old.

i had my son at 17, so i was single and struggling to support both of us. i worked full time and went to college full time and i accrued A LOT of debt. between school loans, daycare, food and medical bills for my son...um, yeah, a lot of debt. i met my husband when i was 19. we got married and have just continued to struggle. we decided to have our daughter even if it meant more scraping to get by. it was much more cost effective for me to be a SAHM then to have 2 kids in daycare. i work a few nights a week serving tables and that's our grocery money. now we have a lot more debt and can hardly make minimum payments. i doubt we'll ever own a house. i doubt we'll ever pay off the debt. but we are happy anyway, we love eachother so much and the rest doesn't matter.

i'm sorry the rest of you are having hard times too, it's nice this thread is here though.
post #44 of 142
I want to know where you get granola that cheep? My store it's 7.99 a pound.
post #45 of 142
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by medicmama View Post
I want to know where you get granola that cheep? My store it's 7.99 a pound.
holy crap!!! i have never seen it for that much. that is insane!
post #46 of 142
I, too, am financially challenged (and that's putting a positive spin on the situation )

I'm a single mom with three kids. I could have the older two in school and get help with daycare costs for the little one, but homeschooling was really important to us, so I stay home instead. I live off of child support and student loans - too bad they have to be paid back! I'm also thinkinga bout starting up my own business that I know could do well, long term, but starting it up is the part I'm not so sure about.

Right now I'm trying to pay off my debt. When my X moved out he left me with a phone bill of over $600, an electric bill of over $900 and a credit card bill of over $1000...not to mention smaller bills here and there. He insisted on doing the finances, and I naively didn't pursue it because it caused too much friction. I had no idea that we were so behind. Then to add to it all my electric bill this winter was over $400 a month! And I swear the warmest it ever got in my house was 65 degrees. Most of the time it was only about 60. So now I have that to pay off too, and by the time it's paid off it will be winter again

But that's ok. I've decided that we're GOING TO move this summer. I was lucky and heard about a nice house outside of town...pretty much my dream rental, before they'd even decided to rent. A couple bought the house for their ds and his family to move into, fixed it all up really nice...and then his dw decided it was too close. Its got three bedrooms, two full bathrooms, a kitchen big enough to eat in and a dining room that we'll probably use as a playroom...and a fire place in the living room. It's got a nice size yard with a little pond, it's well water (not that nasty chlorinated town water) and there are a couple of homeschoolers in the neighborhood. It's really well insulated has terrific natural lighting and propane heat. I'm totally psyched.

I want it, and they want to rent it to me, but...I get help with my rent. I totally hate it, but even if I sent all the kids to school/daycare I couldn't do it on my own. They have to inspect it to tell if it's safe and sanitary, and I'm nervous about the inspection because in one of the bedrooms the window is kinda small. Big enough that the kids or I could get through it, but I'm so worried they'll say it's too small and it's a fire hazard or something ridiculous like that. So thoughts, prayers, wishes, crossed fingers and/or good vibes would be appreciated. The inspection should be sometime next week.

Oh...I haven't read the whole thread yet, but about the granola - I think at my hfs it's like $5.99/lb. I just make my own. It's super easy, much cheaper, and I think it tastes better
post #47 of 142
That house sounds great 3lil... hope it passes inspection!

It has been a very tough week for us... thanks to our lack of funds, my DP has been extremely negative, depressed and miserable. He hasnt left the house for a week?!!! can you believe it? He's been waiting for his $ to come in but instead of feeling motivated to go out and get more business, he's home saying he needs space and sulking while I go about my usual hectic schedule. Thanks to my enthusiasm, I've been feeling pretty good and getting some business which has helped to get groceries and pay gasoline.

But... I'm starting to feel resentful. He keeps saying all he needs is money and that may very well be true, but it's like a catch 22... if he's not feeling good about himself, he won't be attracting more money, isn't that the way it always is?

It's bad enough we can't splurge on a dinner date or get our debts up to date, but being home with someone who's miserable and not enjoying anything has got to be the hardest thing. I can't wait for the appt I made with the psychologist for him (I will be needing one too)... hopefully he attends and we can start working on doing better emotionally in order to improve our situation.

Has anyone else gone through this? Spouse's depression or relationship trouble as a result of being broke? Please share and shed some light... Thanks for letting me vent!

mami
post #48 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamsInDigital View Post
One thing I really struggle with as being a financially challenged family is that DH and I are longing to add another baby or two to our family, and we'd like to do so as soon as possible so we are still young enough to enjoy them. And not one person in my group of friends or my family will say one thing supportive of it. Am I the only one that thinks that money really isn't everything?
I used to feel very strongly that you shouldn't have kids until you can totally afford them. I've softened that somewhat. But when I say softened somewhat I mean I support more programs to make childrearing financially easier on the whole because as I've studied economics I now understand how the community benefits by people having children (overpopulation issues aside). But without those already in place, I still think it sets a bad example for kids about living beyond your means and personal responsibility.

If it's about camping at state parks, backyard birthday parties, and used station wagons vs. Disneyland hotels, petting zoo birthdays and new SUVs; then by all means, money isn't everything. But when it comes to putting food on the table and keeping the lights on without having to depend on social programs, then no, I think the already overburdened social programs that we currently have in place should be reserved for people who don't have a choice or are rebounding from past bad choices.

Money may not be everything, but growing up poor isn't a bowl of cherries either. I just don't think you should deliberately make that decision for a child... IF that is, the opportunity to make a different choice is there.

In "Promises I Can Keep" the authors make the interesting argument that "wait to have children" arguments don't wash in poor communities where marriage prospects are limited, and jobs are typically low-wage, low-skilled and unlike professional positions will not show significant increases in salary over time. Then it makes sense from a sociological and economical perspective to have children when you're young and when you're parent(s)/support network is young enough to help you. Sad that that's the case, but it makes sense.
post #49 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by revolucionaria View Post
i just bought my first issue of hip mama last week and loved it! it felt way more like me, a little funny, sarcastic and edgy, more political than mothering, and way more relevant to my life. also, what's up with every issue (in addition to anti-vax) about the benefits of breastfeeding. hello, do they not realize they are preaching to the converted, here?

anyway, i wanted to ask you, gendenwitha, what you were referring to when you wrote:

"Plus the biggie for me was I'm really sick of all the censorship and mdc and didn't want to financially contribute to that sort of thing anymore".

i am not familiar with this issue, the censorship, i dont think. thanks!

oh, by the way, everyone who reads this thread should read 2 books:

Nickle and Dimed, by Bárbara Ehrenreich
The Working Poor: Invisible in America by David K. Shipler


great thread!

~peace
Glad you liked Hip Mama.

s-e-x does not officially exist on mdc. You aren't allowed to have a decent debate, even if you're not saying anything personal, and if you try, don't point out anything personal even if it's directly relevant to the issue. If someone says, "Huked on foniks wurked fur me" don't you dare criticize them directly kind of thing. I'm just sick of being a grownup and being told what I can and can't discuss with other grownups. Unfortunately the two other boards I used to go on went away or changed direction completely, so this is the best I can do with for now.

I HATE HATE HATE, "Nickled and Dimed" It's SOOOO patronizing. She couldn't even do it, the part that irritated me most was when she got a little bit sick and called a doctor friend to get a Rx. I checked it out of the library long after it was popular just to make sure I wasn't giving the author any of my nickels or dimes!

Then I was reading an interview with her where they asked what surprised me most and she said the reaction of people after she told them what she was doing. I thought, "Well duh, you turn around one day and say, 'ahem, I'm not REALLY a low-life like you, my name is really Jane Goodall and I'm just here to study you.' what the heck to you expect their reaction to be?!!" I actually said that to someone at a conference who knew her personally and said that's not at all how she intended it, and I thought well that just sort of proves my point, she didn't realize that's how people would take it.

@#$%^ing publisher could have gotten a thousand women out there to write the same book, some doing it with children, but no, they've got to have some upper class white broad go slumming it so she can go make a report back to the academic world because they won't listen unless you have initials after your name.
post #50 of 142
hey everyone,

i'm Meg mom to Max and soon to be Mia. i moved in with my high school sweetheart at 17 and we've be happy broke ever since. i really wish someone had set me down and explained that i didn't need to be living with my BF and i could have saved up some money instead of throwing my self into debt a.s.a.p. : anyways, we all currently living in the 1 bedroom basement apartment in my moms house. we haven't been able to pay rent since thanksgiving but we do odd jobs for her to help out. my hubby got his first steady paycheck job in 5+ years making minimum wage after being a full time student and living off of student loans. i go on maternity leave in 4 weeks and most likely won't be going back. i'm not sure how we're going to do it but we'll survive. i'm an avid coupon clipper and i read all the store ads which means we don't always eat organic or whole foods but we have enough to eat. it's nice to know other familes are struggling but happy like us.
post #51 of 142
Hi! Wanted to add my name to the list.

I am one broke mama!

My partner and I are starting a company together and awhile back we made the decision to become a one-income household (that's my income) so that dp could work full time on the company. It's been hard and get's harder the longer we go but it'll be worth it when I can concentrate on designing affordable sustainable houses rather than stupid car dealerships.

We were always struggling even with two incomes but at least then we could afford to shop at thrift stores. Now my ds needs new shoes and I can't even afford to buy him a used pair.

We've been going to the food pantry every other week just to get by. We have one car that is not technically legal and really needs work and another that is on it's last leg.

I can't afford Mothering so I just read the articles on the internet. I want to take ds camping but can't afford the gas to get out of town... I think that we're going to set up the tent in the backyard sometime this week.

But, all complaints aside... it's not that bad. We have a roof (there was a time when we didn't) and at least we live in a place where we don't have to watch our baby starve or worry about getting bombed in the middle of the night.

to all of you... and I would love that granola recipe someone mentioned!
post #52 of 142
Moved to Frugality and Finance...
post #53 of 142
Can I join, too?

I'm Heather, married to Greg, mom to 2 girls and a baby boy. We are working hard to become middle class, but it's definitely a struggle. We're currently in the middle of a long distance move in hopes that it will improve our financial situation in the long run (it's sure not improving anything in the short run ). My husband is a chef and was working at a vegetarian restaurant here in Austin, but they had a big fire in March and he lost his job. We decided to take advantage of the "opportunity" to move to his hometown on Long Island where we'll have family and support that we don't have here. He's been up there since the beginning of April working at a country club while I've been here in Texas waiting for the school year to end. We're moving in with his parents at the end of the month until we can save enough to rent somewhere...rents on Long Island are insane. I'm also going to have to find a job because dh isn't making enough to support us all, and we have have major student loan debt to repay (and I didn't even graduate : ). We have two 20 year old cars that are at least paid for, but we can't afford to get insurance on our own, and one of them doesn't run anyway. I'm so thankful that my inlaws are willing to help us.

I just feel like at 31 years old I should have my stuff together by now. I feel like such a failure when I compare myself to other people my age who have college degrees and careers or have chosen to stay home but could have good jobs - and all the jobs I've ever had have been barely above minimum wage retail jobs. We've made these sacrifices so that our children could have a parent at home with them at all times, but I feel like no one but us sees that as a good thing.

Thanks for being here to commiserate with, mamas.
post #54 of 142
I'm going to join in, too, if you'll have me! I'm Lindsey and I'm a SAHM to 2 little ones (3.5 and 21 months) and we have one on the way. My DH is self-employed as a masonry contractor. He's busy and has lots of work, but it's just not enough to get us out of debt or let us live "comfortably". We live paycheck to paycheck, and in his line of work, we never get paid regularly, especially when customers take months to pay, : which makes our bills late and so on.

We have lots of bills (my student loans, cc, and business equipment are the major ones). It wouldn't pay for me to work and I love being home with the kids and we're committed to that. We CD, BF, cook from scratch, live in a tiny house, and live as frugally as possible.

Speaking of granola, I have a great recipe that a friend gave me that (I think!) is cheaper than store bought.

Granola
3 c. oats
1 1/4 c. wheat flour
1/2 c. brown sugar
3/4 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 Tbsp. cocoa powder (optional)--I prefer it without!
~1/2 tsp salt

1/2 c. oil
1/2 c. water
1/4 c. honey
1 Tbsp vanilla

Mix together the dry ingredients and set aside. Wisk together thte wet ingredients and pour over the dry and mix (a stand mixer comes in real handy!) Spread onto a cookie sheet and bake at 275-300F until dry, ~1 hour. The higher the temp, the darker your granola will come out. Mix/break things up occasionally to allow for equal drying along the way.
post #55 of 142
I'm a grandma member with five grown children. One of the hardest things about raising them was money, or the lack of it. I hated saying no all the time when they would ask for things. Mind you, some requests would have been turned down anyway, but the fact that the decision was automatic because we just didn't have the extra cash, even just .50 cents sometimes was the irritating part.

Dh is very bad with money & we've had utilities cut off more than once. That's getting better but we still scrape by. For many years I got paid once a month only & would send the rent check in promptly. Landlady would hold it & not cash it & then weeks later it would bounce--I know, my fault for not keeping up with my checkbook, but no matter how I tried I'd screw up--till finally started buying a money order to pay it with so at least there were no more surprises & angry phone calls.

The worst thing we did was get in trouble with the IRS. If telling this helps even one person avoid what we've gone through it's worth it. Every year we'd do our taxes & get a small refund. One year, 1989 or so, we did the taxes (at the very last minute, Dh's insistence) & to our surprise, owed instead so he filed for an extension. Which I forgot all about. It would have been due in the middle of the summer when I was driving like a crazy woman taking kids to various programs & classes & day camps; we'd never done it before & it just slipped my mind. Fast forward several years, 7 or 8. We have had our house repossessed & all kids are grown with the youngest living with her dad. Looking for an envelope one night while dh was gone I found . . . a large desk drawer crammed full of envelopes dunning us from the IRS.

Think about how small an envelope is with a single sheet of paper in it. Then imagine how many of those it would take to fill a good-sized drawer. That's what I found. Not long after that surprise, surprise, the IRS tried to garnish my wages. We worked out a deal where I'd pay ____ amount a month but that didn't work out. We consulted with a representative over this & he said "You know, at your ages, you can't possibly live long enough to pay this off" & suggested we try to get a compromise deal to pay it off. That was refused.
Twice they have come in without notice & emptied my entire bank account.

What the worst part of it is, it was all unnnecssary. The amount we owed in 1989 was so small we could have gotten a loan from the credit union, saved the amount within 90 days of the extension or borrowed from my in-laws to cover it. All of this that occurred never need have happened. I don't know why my dh is so bad with money, nor why he thought he could hide the IRS notices from me; he's not normally stupid about anything with the exception of finances. That's improving, but too late to reverse this hideous mistake we made, on my part mostly because I was busy & just not that aware of tax stuff since, as I said, we'd never owed before.
post #56 of 142
Just wanted to say "Welcome to the Dark Side" now that you have been moved too!


For granola.... do a web search for "Crockpot Granola". There are a TON of recipes to make granola using your crockpot!


And I see more homeschoolers on this thread!
post #57 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gendenwitha View Post
I HATE HATE HATE, "Nickled and Dimed" It's SOOOO patronizing. She couldn't even do it, the part that irritated me most was when she got a little bit sick and called a doctor friend to get a Rx. I checked it out of the library long after it was popular just to make sure I wasn't giving the author any of my nickels or dimes!

Then I was reading an interview with her where they asked what surprised me most and she said the reaction of people after she told them what she was doing. I thought, "Well duh, you turn around one day and say, 'ahem, I'm not REALLY a low-life like you, my name is really Jane Goodall and I'm just here to study you.' what the heck to you expect their reaction to be?!!" I actually said that to someone at a conference who knew her personally and said that's not at all how she intended it, and I thought well that just sort of proves my point, she didn't realize that's how people would take it.

@#$%^ing publisher could have gotten a thousand women out there to write the same book, some doing it with children, but no, they've got to have some upper class white broad go slumming it so she can go make a report back to the academic world because they won't listen unless you have initials after your name.
Sing it, sister!

I HATED that book. I nearly threw it across the room during the 'maid' section. I have worked as a maid, thank you very much, and her wide-eyed curiousity at how on earth we can just possibly manage was infuriating. So damn clueless and so condescending.

I love Hip Mama and Brain, Child. I don't like Mothering because I feel it is aimed at a very narrow group of wealthy white women for whom money just magically appears.

I had a very financially tight childhood at times, and one thing I really think my parents did well was that they refused to subscribe to magazines and limited television consumption strictly. Now we do the same thing, and I think it really makes us happier. I feel like advertisments, both in TV and in magazines, and embedded in movies, work to twang our insecurities and make us unhappier. It is easier to live a frugal lifestyle if I don't have reminders constantly in my face about what I'm not buying.

to all you mamas!
post #58 of 142
Ahhhh...I think this is my tribe. subbing
post #59 of 142
Hello!

I just wanted to pop in and do a quick intro -

I'm Kari married to Paul for nearly 8 years now (ann. is 5/29). We have one biological child, our 2 y/o DD, and parent my 15 y/o DS from a previous marriage.

I've been poor nearly all my adult life and have finally accepted that just the way things are gonna be. I try to make it fun now - play games about trying to make do with less, etc. I stopped comparing myself to the Joneses and am SO much happier.

Both DH and I have our MAs, but I opted out of the job market to homeschool my kiddos and stay home full-time with my little one. DH is getting ready to wrap up his PhD, but all that really means in the financial arena is that his student loans will come due.

Anyway...I'm subbing and will *try* to keep up, but these long threads are kinda tough for me to respond to - how do you gals do it?
post #60 of 142
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gendenwitha View Post
s-e-x does not officially exist on mdc. You aren't allowed to have a decent debate, even if you're not saying anything personal, and if you try, don't point out anything personal even if it's directly relevant to the issue. If someone says, "Huked on foniks wurked fur me" don't you dare criticize them directly kind of thing. I'm just sick of being a grownup and being told what I can and can't discuss with other grownups. Unfortunately the two other boards I used to go on went away or changed direction completely, so this is the best I can do with for now.
Oh, and I forgot to mention that if you question their policies or decisions directly, they get removed and you get a naughty message for not playing well with others because it's considered "personal" and "disrespectful" and probably a couple of other rules that they selectively enforce.

But it's not like a PTA meeting where I can choose to be with these people here or elsewhere. It's basically here or nowhere because we're all from all over in our online names, so even though I generally respect the "your house your rules" concept, I don't think that applies in the same way when you're talking about internet forums.
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