Poor Families Support Thread August 07 - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 01:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Since Jessie isn't here, I thought I'd start a support/no debating thread for poor and low income families for August.
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#2 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 01:49 AM
 
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Aww...I miss Jesse> I hope things are looking up for her. Thanks for starting the new thread.

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#3 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 02:20 AM
 
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hopefully she's won the lottery and she and dh and the kids are off on their private yacht somewhere....

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#4 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 09:46 AM
 
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Thanks for starting the new thread.

So, how did everyone do in July? I know we all had goals etc. Anyone hit all of them? Some of them? None of them?

How is everyone's August looking?

C

: :Mama to 4 girls and Michael is here 9/11/09 We love :::
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#5 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 12:53 PM
 
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Hmmm...I don't know if I actually met any of my July goals. I have been cooking more and becoming much better at shopping (scouring the ads, learning prices at different stores etc.)

August Goals:
- Recieve student loan money and use it to pay off extremely high-interest cc debt.
- Try to sell more stuff online. (Last month I made $10 on Ebay!)
- Start a savings account, if (big if) dd's father starts paying child support.
- Continue to annoy the apartment complex until they bump me to the top of the waiting list just to shut me up. (Not seriously, but maybe I'll call them to check in more.)
- Get a work study job at school or begin substitute teaching.
_Ok, the biggest, is not to let my stress about finances affect my parenting, which it has been. This is sooooo hard, but so important.

"If we are peaceful, if we are happy, we can smile and blossom like a flower, and everyone in our family, our entire society, will benefit from our peace." ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
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#6 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 02:25 PM
 
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My July goals were as follows:

I hope that I will be able to rent the house I just "got a line on".

I hope that I can stick to my strict budget.

I hope that the woman who said she had hand-me-downs for my biggest son comes through.


I changed my mind on the first one. For one thing, the rent on that house was more than I am willing to pay, and for another, I really do like my current flat. So, I've changed my housing goal to "I will make my flat a cozy haven."

I was able to stick to my strict budget for July, and am (so far) sticking to my (only slightly less strict) budget for August.

Not only did the woman with the hand-me-downs for my son come through (to the tune of a big bin liner full of clothes, almost all of which are usable for us), but I also received a bin liner full of clothes for my daughter from another friend. This eases the back-to-school clothing stress considerably! (Basically, I only have to buy shoes, socks and a few pairs of jeans to get all of my children ready. I am soooo relieved!)

My goals for August look like this:

I will make my flat a cozy haven.
I will continue to stick to my budget.
I will save 1/4 ($250) of my emergency fund goal this month.
I will shelve my pride and continue to apply for any and all assistance programs for which I qualify.
I will keep careful track of my spending, and trim wherever possible.

Visit www.evolutiontosimplicity.blogspot.com to follow my epic saga of single mummahood....

 

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#7 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 04:05 PM
 
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Ok, this is what I put for last month:
1) Continue adding to my "hope chest" so that I will be ready when I finally get the subsidized apartment that I'm on a waiting list for (hopefully before the end of the year!).
2)Get a job for the 3 days a week when I'm not in school.
3) Find a good, new daycare for dd that's close to home.
4) Make more of an effort to cook simple, healthy meals that include NO convenience foods!
5) Try to be happier and not let stress get me down.


And what I accomplished was:
1) Didn't add to much, but I did make a wish list online at Target for lots of kitchen stuff that I'll need. Hopefully my family will use it when they Xmas shop.:
2)Haven't gotten one yet, but I can apply for work study after school starts.
3)DID THIS ONE!! I found DD a good day care right by home.
4) Did this, too! I've been cooking really frugal meals lately, that are ymummy too.
5) Um.....working on this still....

"If we are peaceful, if we are happy, we can smile and blossom like a flower, and everyone in our family, our entire society, will benefit from our peace." ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
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#8 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 04:50 PM
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July's Goals
Quote:
--DH to find a job with better pay and benefits
--Me to find a part-time job
--Me to get a passing grade in my math class
--DH to go to the doctor and get his ADHD meds before I end up killing him
--DH to stop blowing money we don't have
--Buy a small deep freeze so we can stockpile while we still have food stamps
1) Ha ha ha! Yeah right. I don't think he's even trying to find a better job

2) I found a PT job waiting tables at a locally owned bar & grill. However, I'm thinking about quitting and looking for something else because this place sucks. I have a nasty viral infection and they're expecting me to come in and pretend to like people anyway, nevermind that I'm contagious. They also seem to think that my life should revolve around them and that I should always be on call...

3) I squeaked by with a C-!

4) That didn't happen.

5) I've been hiding the money from DH so he can't spend it. He has to ask me before he buys anything. Yeah, that sounds bad but it's necessary.

6) Accomplished.
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#9 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 06:29 PM
 
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I missed out on last months discussion but am back. I'll re-introduce myself. I a SAHM to 3 little girls. DH is working full-time now and also planning on going back to school full-time in Jan. for his MDiv. We haven't figured out the how but that's why we're living 3 states away from our family. DH has looked for a second job and so far with no success. We were hoping to find a way to bring in some additional income to get some money in our savings and pay off some debt. We have no open credit accounts so we have to get by on what we're brining in but are getting NO where with that right now. I've been able to bring our grocery bill down a little. And as kathirynne put it, we've swallowed our pride and are applying for what we qualify for. I have a WIC appointment but it is still a month away. We barely don't qualify for food stamps. We're also looking into doing the Angel Food Ministries thing. Does anyone here do that? I'm worried about having enough freezer space especially if we did more then one of their packages. Hope everyone has a better month.
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#10 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 07:49 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by 2Sweeties1Angel View Post
5) I've been hiding the money from DH so he can't spend it. He has to ask me before he buys anything. Yeah, that sounds bad but it's necessary.
:. Same here. I only leave his "allowance" in his checking account, and when it's gone, it's gone. But I have to check periodically throughout the month to make sure he doesn't have any overdraft fees b/c they're $30 each, which I then have to pay. The whole thing is sad, but true. It's sad I can't trust him more, but I've finally realized it and done something about it. We're doing better b/c of this, and even DH has admitted it.
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#11 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 07:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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hopefully she's won the lottery and she and dh and the kids are off on their private yacht somewhere....
That would be so cool!
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#12 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 07:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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These were my July goals:

Renter's insurance--not met
prescription plan for me--not met, but I don't need it now
New ped for DS--have contact info but need to call
life insurance--not met
Write!--met, but leaving on for this month
Save for oil bill.--met and still saving
save for emergency fund.--met and still saving
Use crock pot, less gas for stove--met and still doing
save on electric bill--not met, but it hasn't gotten worse
Stop buying batteries!--not met but still trying
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#13 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 10:26 PM
 
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Here was my July's goals

1.Get a raise which will enable me to fufill goal #2
2. Find or rent bigger house so we can fufill #3
3. Have another baby

Now my goals are

Well none of them happened and in fact we've been doing worse since I lost my job mid July.
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#14 of 272 Old 08-02-2007, 10:44 PM
 
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first off--CONGRATS TO JOSYBEAR!!

heh, i never wrote a neat little list of goals for july, but we are certainly sitting better than we were at the start of last month!

Our food situation went from bad to worse to horrible last month, then DP got a job (YAY) but we had to spend every last dime on food. I called, emailed, and generally harrassed the cr@p outta anyone and everyone who could fix my food stamp case all last month, cause I hadn't gotten benefits since early June. Earlier this week, someone called me and said everything would be fixed asap and to call her if it took more than a day or two. I called her on wed cause we still didn't have benefits then, and--get this--i got a recording saying she was on vacation for a week!! But today, just today--I decided to check....and

WOOOOOHOOOOOO we have $848 in foodstamp benefits!!! ROCK!!!

now that we won't have to spend every dime on noodles and canned goods we can afford clothes for the kids, the curriculum i want, and : we have $$ to finally get married next week

now....maybe i should look into some sort of childproofing for the thermostat--cause my kids keep bumping it onto 60--the bill's gonna be ginormous!!

ETA: just wanted to say THANKS to all the mdc mamas who bought things from me on the TP--that money literally kept us afloat with buying food last month. i am very grateful.

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#15 of 272 Old 08-03-2007, 04:48 PM
 
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Thats awesome Krystal! Go get yourself some FRESH fruits and veggies!!

So educate me, What is difference between Section 8, Subsidized housing and income based housing? Is there a difference?? Or is it different names for the same thing?
Chandi

: :Mama to 4 girls and Michael is here 9/11/09 We love :::
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#16 of 272 Old 08-03-2007, 07:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Congratulations, Krystal323! for the food and the wedding!

As for us, now we'll have no money at all left over, meaning after totaly necessary utility bills, at the end of every month until we get my medical bills paid off. They're frickin OB bills, which I didn't need, didn't want, and generally despise b/c they did NOTHING for me that I couldn't have done myself. But anyway, they were supposed to be covered, but they're not, and they can't be covered/prorated--retrograded or whatever you call it when they have to cover 3 MOS back--b/c DS was born in March and I'm only getting the bills now! So we have to save until we can afford the bills, one at a time, and I do not believe they charge $350 for a couple bleepin stitches! It'll take us a couple months just to pay off that one.

Just when you think you're ahead, you find out you're totally screwed! How nice!

Oh and I can just scratch the renter's insurance off my list b/c there's no way that's happening. And with my luck and no insurance, we'll lose all our stuff in some natural disaster or something. Not that we have much to lose, but it's OURS for goodness sake and we love it b/c of that, oh and we need it too. But so much for that, huh?

OOO, and that emergency fund we started and worked so hard to get close to $500 no longer exists. You guessed it, it's feeding my rich OB! And we still owe loads. :

Ok mamas, I'm done now.
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#17 of 272 Old 08-03-2007, 11:25 PM
 
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I've applied to an organic grocery store so keep fingers crossed I get the job.....
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#18 of 272 Old 08-04-2007, 12:44 AM
 
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I'm sooo happy for you Krystal!! Though it's absolutely appalling that they made you go through all of that.

Crossing my fingers for you sonrisaa29 - Good Luck! (or is it Break a Leg?)

"If we are peaceful, if we are happy, we can smile and blossom like a flower, and everyone in our family, our entire society, will benefit from our peace." ~ Thich Nhat Hanh
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#19 of 272 Old 08-04-2007, 01:27 PM
 
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Krystal, I'm so glad that you finally got your food stamps sorted, but man... why did you have to pass the bad luck along to me?!?

We have NOTHING on our foodstamp card. Which would be okay, since we spent the last of July's benefits right at the end of the month figuring that it would be enough food to last a while. But thursday (my first day of work at the 'booby prize temp job') our power went out for FIFTEEN HOURS. And of course, it was 95+ degrees out that day. Everything we'd bought that was perishable had to be trashed -- all the lunch meat for my lunches, all the milk for DS, all the butter and cheese, anything that we'd prepared to eat as leftovers, the meat that was thawing, the frozen veggies in the door of the freezer, the WIC juice, the few fancy snacks we'd bought and froze like ice cream, everything.

And of course this is the month that DHS is going to a new system where benefits are transfered to your account on a rotating day according to the last digit of your social security number. Mine is a 6 -- which means I get my $408 of benefits on August 11th -- exactly 2 days after I get my first paycheck and won't need them or offically even qualify for them anymore. AND, I don't even have WIC anymore to replace the milk and cheese because their 'prenatal checkup' appointment was scheduled for my first day of work and there is NO WAY I can get time off to go sit in their office for 3 hours.

We've got pantry staples like pasta and rice, but nothing to go with/on them and no veggies as well as nothing I can take to work for surreptitious lunches or snacks (Everyone else in my office eats out every day. I'm not allowed to eat in my office, and there are no facilities at all -- no fridge, no microwave, no sink, not even a freakin' coffee maker... I have to take a cooler and eat in my car.) We have to get at least some staples, but it's looking like they're going to have to go on DH's credit card at 22% APR since we barely made rent, have nothing in the account and still owe half our deposit on our new place this month. Plus, at some point I'm going to have to call DHS and let them know that I'm employed, at which point they'll take us off all aid. I'm terrified of DS being uninsured until feburary, and I'm terrified that if we do spend food stamps on the 11th we'll have to pay them back the money.

And I'm really (#*&$%^ tired of being hungry and terrified.

Spending all of my money and time on this wild, wild life.
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#20 of 272 Old 08-04-2007, 05:20 PM
 
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Mama Pam, you mentioned Angel Food Ministries, do you also have a SHARE program available in your area? It is similar, I believe. I think you have to do three hours of volunteer work in order to be able to purchase the package, but our church also has a number that they donate to families in need. If you qualify for WIC, be sure and get it. If the offices don't maintain a certain number of clients, the number they qualify to serve will be reduced the next year.
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#21 of 272 Old 08-04-2007, 07:21 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Belleweather! Is there anything we can do to help? Anythin at all? Send coupons or something? I feel horrible for you and know that helpless and terrified feeling! Maybe there's a food bank or church that could help too--if they don't take forever to approve people...
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#22 of 272 Old 08-04-2007, 07:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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sonrisaa29, keeping fingers crossed that you get the job!
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#23 of 272 Old 08-05-2007, 01:03 AM
 
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4) That didn't happen.
So it begs the question- did you kill him yet? :

Glad that you have been able to prevent him from spending unneeded $$- my SIL has the exact problem with my brother and I wanna kick him for her.

Katie, mama to one big boy (6/03) and one little boy (12/08).
It is never the wrong time to do the right thing.
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#24 of 272 Old 08-05-2007, 12:29 PM
 
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{{{hugs}}} to Belleweather!! I am so sorry you have to feel scared I promise i didn't mean to pass on the bad luck!!!

the problem with our case turned out to be that i was trusting the local dhs workers to fax my application/proof of everything to the right place at the right time, and apparently the dhs workers don't know how to operate a fax machine and/or didn't care that my case had a deadline, etc etc. apparently they were only faxing the front side of each page, and faxing the pages one by one, all out of order, for weeks after the deadline Like they lost the whole stack of papers and then would randomly find one and go "oh! i should fax this..."


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#25 of 272 Old 08-05-2007, 03:51 PM
 
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Belleweather! Is there anything we can do to help? Anythin at all? Send coupons or something? I feel horrible for you and know that helpless and terrified feeling! Maybe there's a food bank or church that could help too--if they don't take forever to approve people...
Thanks, but we're hanging in there. DH called his parents to cry about the power outage, and they offered to send us a check for groceries -- so at least if we put them on the card we can pay it off before we have to pay any interest. I'm also walking down to the local outreach ministry to see if they'll trade me maternity clothes for food pantry stuff; they send out a flyer to the neighborhood once a month saying what they need most and this month it was maternity clothes, especially larger sizes. Since I've got all my XLs and I'm a solid Medium now, perhaps we can work something out.

I just need hugs and support, I guess... I know everyone else has different things where when you do it you feel like you've hit rock bottom, but using that credit card for groceries is mine. I didn't even want him to get the bloody thing, and I believe credit cards are immoral and here we are using it for groceries so we can feed our kid. It really hurts my heart.

Quote:
the problem with our case turned out to be that i was trusting the local dhs workers to fax my application/proof of everything to the right place at the right time, and apparently the dhs workers don't know how to operate a fax machine and/or didn't care that my case had a deadline, etc etc. apparently they were only faxing the front side of each page, and faxing the pages one by one, all out of order, for weeks after the deadline Like they lost the whole stack of papers and then would randomly find one and go "oh! i should fax this..."
Oh NO. I had a client who used to do when I was doing poverty law that and it made me just LIVID. For some reason she could not grasp the idea that the fax machine didn't fax both sides of a two-sided sheet, so she'd send me hundreds of pages of medical records, all completely out of order and with only one side faxed. I nearly wrung her neck.

Spending all of my money and time on this wild, wild life.
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#26 of 272 Old 08-05-2007, 04:40 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Big ol' to Bellweather and the rest of you too! I'm thinking of all of you and keeping my fingers crossed that you get what you need--peace, most of all!
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#27 of 272 Old 08-05-2007, 08:04 PM
 
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Can I just say life I think is getting worse, on our way home today my car died. I think its just a computer malfunction thing, but still now I have no car and my mom is coming up from Texas this weel.

Plus my son is 3, please tell me these temper tantrums get easier???? And the Why, why, why, why, for everything!!! I know some of its me because I am more stressed out lately with having no money or job so I just try to tell myself that.
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#28 of 272 Old 08-05-2007, 08:38 PM
 
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I hope everyone's week is much better.

DH has a lead on some contract work. Hopefully that will come through.
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#29 of 272 Old 08-06-2007, 12:03 PM
 
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I'm coming out of lurkdom and joining this month. I'm so totally stressed and just need to hang out with some who understand what I'm going thru. :

My dh makes decent money, enough to support us all. The problem started a few months ago when a large check went thru that we weren't anticipating going thru (it was an earnest check for the house we were going to buy, it wasn't supposed to be processed until we closed but someone didn't get that memo apparently). So the check went thru on the same day that dh paid bills. Every single payment he made bounced. Almost an entire paycheck worth of overdraft fees. : Once we realized what had happened we were almost $1k in the hole. I about died. Luckily we had gone out and bought some groceries and diapers the night before or we would've had nothing.

So since then we've been floating checks and trying desperately to play catch up. We are so broke its not even funny. We're late (way late) on everything so we've got late fees and shut off notices coming in left and right. I can't even answer the telephone anymore because every single call is a creditor wondering when we'll be making June and July's payments.

Dh makes too much to qualify for any assistance. I was working (babysitting), making between $50 - $100 a week which was at least putting food on the table but the mom found a teenage girl who was cheaper so now I make $0. I've been trying to sell everything I think is of value on the TP and other places so that my kids could at least have some birthday gifts (all summer birthdays, of course) and some clothes for fall. I just don't know when we're going to get out of this mess and it has put me in the worst place emotionally that I have been in in years.

Then this past week we actually thought we had a positive balance only to find out that the bank saw that too and took out a double loan payment (!!). Yeah so guess who went back in the red again? I have been on the phone with the bank begging and pleading for them to reverse at least one of the payments (since one of them isn't even due until September!) and at least a couple of the overdraft fees the double payment caused. I feel like such a baby, I'm on the phone bawling. But we need to eat, ya know? :

Gah, I'm sorry for the long rambling whine-fest, I'm just so overwhelmed right now. Dh says that if we can just get thru Aug and Sept we'll hopefully be able to breathe again. I don't know how I'm going to survive 2 more months of this...but I will, I know. Don't have much of a choice.

*sigh*
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#30 of 272 Old 08-06-2007, 12:36 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by caricandothis View Post
I'm coming out of lurkdom and joining this month. I'm so totally stressed and just need to hang out with some who understand what I'm going thru. :
Yeah, they would be us mamas here. Some PP's here have mentioned Angel Food Ministries, Share programs, etc, and there are usually other programs and food banks too. Hopefully they could at least keep your family fed. Is there anything you can borrow against--I've cashed in my life insurance policy for medical bills.
Keeping you in my thoughts!
mrskennedy is offline  
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