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#1 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 01:35 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok, I wish I had already graduated law school. I wish I had a job already. I wish I could afford life. I wish I wish I wish.

I'm doing a project for school thats due in a few hours (only a draft, but still) and I just don't know how to do it. I just can't get it finished b/c I have to go pick up my passport in 15 minutes. Then I have to go to the eye dr. Then I have to pick up my son from daycare. Then I have to find a way to make dinner, put ds to bed, and do my homework before I collapse.

To top it off I'm broke - financially, I just can't swing things this semester. I'm BROKE. Completely. My ex doesn't help pay for childcare b/c he "can't afford it", yeah a-hole, thats b/c you work part time and are looking for a part time VOLUNTEER position so that you can avoid child support. Whats that censored smilie? I need it for right here.

I'm frustrated, and I just don't have enough hours in the day today to get ANYTHING meaningful done. I have to send in an incomplete draft to my prof and beg forgiveness for being an idiot. I REALLY wish I had been able to graduate law school on time, then at least I'd be able to find a job.
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#2 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 01:44 PM
 
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{{{{Thyra}}}}

It's very frustrating, isn't it? I had to take a day off from work today just so I could have five minutes alone.

For tonight, peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches or grilled cheese sandwiches are always a fairly healthy alternative. Also scrambled eggs or pancakes; all are pretty quick, easy and nutritious.

For the future, see if you can lay hands on a crockpot. Check your local freecycle or craigslist free section. Then you can start dinner before you leave the house and it will be waiting for you.

Do you, or could you, get help from the state for childcare? Are there any scholarships or grants available at your school? Would you be willing to take in a roommate? coabode.org is a site for single moms to connect and share housing.

HTH and just know it will get better.
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#3 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 02:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks, I think grilled cheese is it for tonight! Thanks for reminding me that I can make that (my brain is mush today).

I actually have a crock-pot, but using it requires prep the night before, which is sometimes impossible due to homework - any super simple easy recipes anyone?? PLEASE??

I decided to skip picking up my passport today, I'll do it later this week when things calm down.

It doesn't help that this morning my ds got mad at me and proceeded to scream blue murder at me for 30minutes, then when we finally got outside it was pouring down rain so I had to push the stroller with one hand while holding an umbrella. THEN, as if that weren't bad enough, I got to school and realized that I didn't have lunch for ds, or his sippy cup, and yeah, its been one of those Monday's from HE!!.

Thanks for the support.
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#4 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 02:56 PM
 
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here, there are also single moms posting on craigslist for roommates and shares, and childcare exchanges. la leche league might be a good resource for that, too- you need full time care for your kid, so the other options might just be for getting in some study time.
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#5 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 04:02 PM
 
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There is an AWESOME crockpot cookbook: "Not Your Mother's Slowcooker." I love it!

Simple recipes:
pork roast with a bottle of barbecue sauce poured over it

beef roast with Lipton onion soup recipe poured over it (or just onions, garlic and mushrooms)

whole chicken - pop in crockpot, season the way you like and let it cook 'til you get home

butternut squash - pop whole, unpeeled squash into crockpot with cinnamon; super easy to cut and eat when you get home

sweet potatoes - pop several whole sweet potatoes into crockpot with cinnamon; store in fridge until ready to eat them - reheat and serve

butternut squash w/cranberries - cut up b.squash, add cranberries and 1/4 cup real maple syrup; cook in crockpot until done

A rice cooker is also great 'cause you can turn on the rice when you get home and it cooks while you help DC put away their stuff. You can also use it to steam veg or just steam them in the microwave; about 5 minutes or so.

A great timesaver for me on late nights is to have DS put on his jammies while I cook dinner. As soon as dinner's over, he brushes his teeth then story and bed.

I also use leftovers liberally. I will cook pasta and veg on Monday night, he'll take that for Tuesday lunch and we'll eat it for Tuesday dinner. Rinse and repeat but my DS is great about eating the same meal two days in a row.

I prep on the weekend when I have a bit more time and often cook ahead so that all I have to do during the week is to warm meals. When we use the grill or oven, I cook as much as possible then so that we are being efficient with the energy usage.

I will make a bowl of salad and we'll use that all week for veg; just leave it in the fridge and add tomatoes or cheese as needed.

Don't forget that there are food pantries around if you need groceries before you get more money into the house. We have several here that don't even take your information or question your income.
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#6 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 05:32 PM
 
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There is an AWESOME crockpot cookbook: "Not Your Mother's Slowcooker." I love it!
I'm pretty sure I have that cookbook and never use it. I just make stuff up as I go. PM me your address and I will send it to you, if you'd like. : school is hard. I am working on my dissertation now, and though I am in a good marriage, I spend a lot of time wishing too. Today my wish will be for you to get some peace.

goorganic.jpgwife to footinmouth.gif, currently WOH and geek.gif on my doctorate. (I'm dissertating!) We: novaxnocirc.giftoddler.gifgd.giffamilybed1.gif  with DS (4/09)!
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#7 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 07:32 PM
 
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I was a single mother during law school, so I feel your pain. Sometimes that financial aid check just does not stretch far enough, and there are never enough hours in the day to study. When do you graduate?
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#8 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 08:14 PM
 
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Wow--hang in there! Isn't there a special place in heck for these guys?

Sorry to hijack--but I'm loving the crockpot idea.
Crockpots moms, can you tell me HOW long can I leave it?
AND
do I cook on LO or HI??? (That's what it actually says on the side of my crockpot: LO and HI---I'm not making it up)
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#9 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 09:35 PM
 
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Wow--hang in there! Isn't there a special place in heck for these guys?

Sorry to hijack--but I'm loving the crockpot idea.
Crockpots moms, can you tell me HOW long can I leave it?
AND
do I cook on LO or HI??? (That's what it actually says on the side of my crockpot: LO and HI---I'm not making it up)

That's the beauty of crockpots; you can leave them as long as you need. If you want it to be done sooner, cook it on HIGH for about four to six hours. If you are leaving it all day, cook it on LOW for seven to eight hours; on LOW, you can leave it for longer. It just keeps cooking but because the environment is sealed, it doesn't dry out and because it's on LOW, it doesn't burn.

I have cooked chicken stock in the crockpot overnight so I didn't have to tend it on the stove. In winter, I cook steel-cut oatmeal with cinnamon, nutmeg, dried fruit and cream; I set it up the night before and cook it on LOW. When we wake in the morning, the house is full of the most delicious smell.

When cooking chicken and pork, I cook it on HIGH for one hour to get it to a higher temperature and then set it to LOW to finish cooking. You can put everything into your crockpot the previous night and set the ceramic pot into the fridge. In the morning, just pop it into the metal pot and turn it on.

I actually have a couple of crockpots because I like to use more than one on the weekend so that I can cook a bunch of stuff at the same time without having to tend it.
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#10 of 25 Old 09-27-2010, 10:08 PM
 
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How frustrating for you. I really wish you where in school in my home town. I'd be happy to run a few errands or cook a few dinners to help another mama out. I'll be thinking about you and hoping you find some peaceful moments to rejuvenate.
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#11 of 25 Old 09-28-2010, 09:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm pretty sure I have that cookbook and never use it. I just make stuff up as I go. PM me your address and I will send it to you, if you'd like. : school is hard. I am working on my dissertation now, and though I am in a good marriage, I spend a lot of time wishing too. Today my wish will be for you to get some peace.
You are awesome, thank you so much! I'll pm you when I get a sec!

Other mama's - thanks for the commiseration! Last night was another rough one - ds didn't sleep until 9pm and then he woke up at 2:15 and screamed for an hour. I don't do CIO, but I also don't nurse him until 5am, so it was a long night, and then of course I couldn't fall asleep for ages. Ugh.

I'm really close to being done - but that almost makes it more daunting since I have an incomplete that I need to finish and 2 20+ page papers to write, plus my clinic group is traveling to Haiti for a week in Oct.

We're doing really cool work, and my resume is going to get a boost this semester, but its hard work and I'm getting frustrated with it. Oh well, today promises to be a better day.
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#12 of 25 Old 09-28-2010, 05:51 PM
 
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my mom's best friend teaches home economics- she actually puts stuff in the crockpot frozen. she said that the temps have changed- they are hotter than they used to be, so she cooks everything on low. so you might google that technique, too. also, there are charts out there for if it cooks x time in the oven, then give it y time in the slow cooker. i'm sorry you're so stressed- but be glad you're not me- with an english / women's studies degree, looking for a waitressing job!
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#13 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 10:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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DS SLEPT last night!!! From 8pm-5:15am!!!!! OMG I feel like a new woman!!!

I also did the sweet potato's in the crockpot with nutmeg (didn't have cinnamon) overnight, and viola - LUNCH! Awesome. I love my crockpot - I just need to use it more!

What can I do with a pumpkin? I bought one to roast, but now I realize I don't have a knife big enough to cut it - so its going to end up super messy and grody looking - but I really want to cook it for my ds b/c he LOVED pumpkin last year! Ideas please??
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#14 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 10:17 AM
 
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If you don't have a big knife you can cut the top off and scoop it, like you're going to make a jackolantern, then cut small pieces from there. I love the seeds toasted in a pan with a little salt and pepper. So good and full of protein.
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#15 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 10:31 AM
 
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my mom's best friend teaches home economics- she actually puts stuff in the crockpot frozen. she said that the temps have changed- they are hotter than they used to be, so she cooks everything on low. so you might google that technique, too. also, there are charts out there for if it cooks x time in the oven, then give it y time in the slow cooker. i'm sorry you're so stressed- but be glad you're not me- with an english / women's studies degree, looking for a waitressing job!
Don't be so sure. I don't know where you live but law jobs are scarce where I live I graduated in May, still don't have a job. Lots o my classmates are looking for server jobs. My advice start looking for a job now.

Baby Mama, Law Student, Milk Maker:
Mom-type to DSS 10/12/03, Mom to DS 10/05/06 and DD 11/03/08.
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#16 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 11:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Don't be so sure. I don't know where you live but law jobs are scarce where I live I graduated in May, still don't have a job. Lots o my classmates are looking for server jobs. My advice start looking for a job now.
Yeah, my classmates who graduated last year are still looking for jobs. Most of them got jobs, but I'm nervous about graduating in december instead of May (since most legal jobs are designed to start after graduation). Ugh. I'm not excited. I think I'll most likely end up taking a non-legal job to start, and then move into one.
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#17 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 11:40 AM
 
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In winter, I cook steel-cut oatmeal with cinnamon, nutmeg, dried fruit and cream; I set it up the night before and cook it on LOW. When we wake in the morning, the house is full of the most delicious smell.
Just FYI, if you grind up the oats they only take a few minutes to cook on the stove! The porridge comes out lovely and smooth. you can make it runny or thick to your preferance, and add what ever you want while it cooks. You can use water, milk or cream to cook it. My kids all love it with just sugar on it or golden syrup, just like I grew up eatting it.


Thyra, I've been following your posts but not adding anything as I haven't had anything usefull to add. Just wanted to know you have another supporter here!
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#18 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 11:56 AM
 
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Just adding more {{hugs}}, and wanted to add a great, very simple crockpot recipe for brown sugar glazed pork loin. To make the glaze...1 cup brown sugar, 1 Tbsp. dijon mustard (or any brown or spicy mustard), 1 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar. You can also add salt and pepper, and a little minced garlic if you want to.

Put pork into the crockpot, mix the glaze and rub it all over the meat. That's it...done! Cook on low for 7-8 hrs.

Mama to DS (5)

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#19 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 03:22 PM
 
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First off: grilled cheese, scrambled eggs, and pancakes are "alternatives" ?!?! Add in organic whole-wheat nuggets and the like, and that's what we've been living on since I started back in school!!! It was just pancake night last night!

Secondly: Major empathy for trying to finish up law school as a single mama! I've just been taking some additional classes and have been knocked on the head with how grateful I should be that when I was in law school I could just hide away with my books until things were done. And that I could stay up until 3:am finishing something because there wouldn't be someone waking up at 5:30 ready to go for the day! I'm only taking a couple of classes but it's on top of working full time and it kind of sucks! A lot! Seriously reconsidering this plan for a variety of reasons, but one of them is that I miss just hanging out with my son! When we were at my mom's this summer, she was playing with him while I took a test, and he was happy for a while, then sent her away "Grandma, I'm going to build dinosaurs. You go work on your computer."

And finally, it's a hard gig finding work after graduation! If you can move, it might be worth checking out some less obvious career options. I've worked for a giganto corporation for the past 6-ish years that hires TONS of lawyers-who-don't-want-to-be-lawyers. And some who just need a job! HINT: look up the main websites for any company that provides you with a research password while you're in school. Usually at the bottom of that page will be a link to "careers". I didn't get in until a couple of years out of school, and the competition is tough, but I did get in. Not a dream job, but mellow and good for someone with a family (no overtime!).
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#20 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 03:52 PM
 
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I have cooked chicken stock in the crockpot overnight so I didn't have to tend it on the stove. In winter, I cook steel-cut oatmeal with cinnamon, nutmeg, dried fruit and cream; I set it up the night before and cook it on LOW. When we wake in the morning, the house is full of the most delicious smell.
Everything else aside - this sounds freakin' delish.

Are there approximate amts. that you use?

And thyra, man - do I totally hear you on the sleeplessness, stress, etc.

If my almost three year old does not give up being nocturnal soon, I think I may lose my mind.

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#21 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 04:03 PM - Thread Starter
 
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First off: grilled cheese, scrambled eggs, and pancakes are "alternatives" ?!?! Add in organic whole-wheat nuggets and the like, and that's what we've been living on since I started back in school!!! It was just pancake night last night!

Secondly: Major empathy for trying to finish up law school as a single mama! I've just been taking some additional classes and have been knocked on the head with how grateful I should be that when I was in law school I could just hide away with my books until things were done. And that I could stay up until 3:am finishing something because there wouldn't be someone waking up at 5:30 ready to go for the day! I'm only taking a couple of classes but it's on top of working full time and it kind of sucks! A lot! Seriously reconsidering this plan for a variety of reasons, but one of them is that I miss just hanging out with my son! When we were at my mom's this summer, she was playing with him while I took a test, and he was happy for a while, then sent her away "Grandma, I'm going to build dinosaurs. You go work on your computer."

And finally, it's a hard gig finding work after graduation! If you can move, it might be worth checking out some less obvious career options. I've worked for a giganto corporation for the past 6-ish years that hires TONS of lawyers-who-don't-want-to-be-lawyers. And some who just need a job! HINT: look up the main websites for any company that provides you with a research password while you're in school. Usually at the bottom of that page will be a link to "careers". I didn't get in until a couple of years out of school, and the competition is tough, but I did get in. Not a dream job, but mellow and good for someone with a family (no overtime!).
Mind sharing which one? (PM me if thats ok - don't feel obligated!!) And, I can't move too far - I have a 35mile radius to move within, so I can go a little ways but I really don't want to have to petition the court if I don't HAVE to. Especially since while I've been in law school I've made amazing friends and have a really awesome support network here, so leaving would be really hard! (I never thought I'd say that, since this city is not my fave, but I love my friends so much!!)
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#22 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 04:10 PM
 
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Mind sharing which one? (PM me if thats ok - don't feel obligated!!)
Done. Don't know if it will help, but sometimes a random idea can spark other random ideas that do work!
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#23 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 06:22 PM
 
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I actually have a crock-pot, but using it requires prep the night before, which is sometimes impossible due to homework - any super simple easy recipes anyone?? PLEASE??
Frozen chicken breasts and a jar of salsa. Put them in in the morning and cook on low. Shred the chicken when you get home. Add water to make soup or spoon into tortilla's or taco shells. You can get fancy and add frozen or canned corn. Top with chees if you are inclined. Crock-pot prep does NOT get any easier than that.

Pack of chicken legs (drumsticks) and jarred bbq sauce. Cook on low. Same deal.

Third generation WOHM. I work by choice.
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#24 of 25 Old 09-29-2010, 06:31 PM
 
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Are there approximate amts. that you use?
I follow the recipe on the oatmeal/can box - 1 cup oatmeal to 4 parts water. 11/2 t salt. I might also add 1 or 2 peaches or a cup of strawberries, and 1/2 cup brown sugar. DH likes it sweet. I do not add milk for a long (4+ hour) cook in the crockpot. BUT i reheat the oatmeal all week in the micro at work with coffee creamer added. Delish.

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#25 of 25 Old 09-30-2010, 08:46 PM
 
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Everything else aside - this sounds freakin' delish.

Are there approximate amts. that you use?

And thyra, man - do I totally hear you on the sleeplessness, stress, etc.

If my almost three year old does not give up being nocturnal soon, I think I may lose my mind.
I use:
three cups water
1 cup cream or milk
1 cup steel-cut oatmeal
1/2 to 1 cup fruit; dried, fresh or frozen whatever you have
1-2 tsps cinnamon, allspice, or nutmeg whatever you have (I make a bowl of spices that I keep just for this; basically just a combo of these three)

Use whatever spices you like but I find that they are important to the deliciousness. You can add butter if you want to add fat or sugar if you want it sweeter but we usually add those after the fact so that we can customize it. DS likes butter and brown sugar while I just enjoy a bit more milk or cream. I like cooking it with the cream; it tastes better and creamier to me.

For fruits, I usually use dried or fresh peaches, apricots, cut apples, raisins, cranberries and/or dried cherries. I don't use salt; DS's dad's family has high blood pressure issues so we don't use a lot of salt in our house. I want him to eat a diet fairly low in sodium from the beginning rather than having to adjust in his thirties.

This recipe makes enough for the two of us to have breakfast, and still have at least three portions to take for snacks, etc.
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