The Creative Struggle

By Jenna

I live a good life. I have a wonderful husband and two fantastic children. We live in a one bedroom apartment with our dog and cat. My husband has a good job and I am a full time student. That last part is what makes our lives a little more difficult. Being a full time student and a mom has put me in a position where I need to be a stay home mom instead of working mom. Though the trials that led me to this position were less than friendly, I am almost done with school and can see the light at the end of the tunnel. The hardest part of being a stay home mom isn’t taking care of the children constantly, it’s the struggle to keep our head above water.

 

In 2014, my daughter was born. I had a good job working in hospice as a team coordinator. Right as I was asking to go back to work from a set maternity leave, not paid for by the company since they only would allow me to work per diem, the company advised me they were looking to downsize. Guess what that meant. The person who worked nearly 40 hours a week on per diem and had just had a baby was now the most expendable person in the company. My boss had refused to give me a termination notice for fear that I would take legal measures. I had begged her at least to write a letter for my apartment so I could get out of my lease. Without a job, we couldn’t afford my previous apartment. My boss refused and instead wrote a letter saying it was my decision to be a stay home mother instead of work. I cried because her lies and fears were controlling her actions to make my life harder than it was already.

 

I did not sue the company for wronging me. I did not have enough funds to hire a lawyer and I knew my heart couldn’t handle a new baby, searching for a job that would pay me enough, and a lawsuit. It simply wasn’t worth the misery I would have experienced. Instead, I went back to school. It was a long term goal of mine to have my BA in History. I chose history because I am passionate about history. I have one more year of school and I want to share how my little family of four survived this far on a single income in Orange County California.

 

When I started school, about 2 years ago, I was working a part time job making calls for a company, but wasn’t even making grocery money. This, plus my husband’s $20 an hour income was just enough to get us through my first year with our first newborn. Part way through the first year, we had to get creative with our finances because there was another baby on the way. We already had school debt from both my previous semester out of state, my husband’s education, and credit card debt from a vacation or two. Coupled with paying for my both of my children’s home water birth, we have been strapped tight with debt.

 

The first thing my husband started doing to help us is begin consolidating our debt. We were able to take out a bit extra in the student loans to cover some of our credit card debt and our children’s births. The student loans were at lower interest rates, and it allows me to postpone paying of that debt until I’m more financially stable. We have decided to stay in a one bedroom since we have that flexibility. We are in a downstairs unit with a backyard so we are as comfortable as we can afford for the short run.

 

As the years ticked by (I say that, but only 3 have passed), I was able to find cheaper groceries at stores like Aldi, how to make meals, where to find cheap and used baby clothes, and my husband was able to secure a bit of a raise. Even through all of this, he still had to get a second job. That is what being an adult is about though, I guess. Doing what you need to do, even though it isn’t fun or easy.

 

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Thanks for fucking mom! Father’s day edition

By Leigh

fathers

You know what really pisses me off?

Dad’s that refuse to help with their children.

I’m not talking about deadbeats, I’m talking about those that refuse to make a bottle, change a poop diaper, lose sleep if the baby is cranky at night, etc, because it’s a “woman’s job”.

When did this become a thing? I guess it’s always been a thing, it’s new to me because I always assumed that a child is a 50/50 responsibility. My dad took care of me my entire childhood. He was not stay at home dad. He worked 40+ a week and still found time to bring me lunch, pick me up, do homework and be an all around friend. I guess my dad is the last of the Mahicans. These days, asking a man to even help a little is nearly asking for WWIII.

Come on dads. Would it hurt to give mommy that over due break? I can hear all the men shout in unison “YES”.

After I had my daughter, I had really high expectations for what was to come in the following months. I created this image of me and my SO (significant other) working together as a team so that BOTH of us could rest.

Did that happen?

HELL NO.

From day one, it’s been a 90% solo bolo job. Don’t get me wrong, he is a great dad. But at 3am, when you wake the baby with your snoring, I expect you to deal with the monster. Not turn over for your second dream, leaving me to suffer through the night. Oh did I include that I too, like my SO, I work full time.

Am I just complaining?

I am lucky enough to have the father of my daughter in my life, I commend all of the women out there that are doing it on their own. Raising children is probably the hardest time in the world, but you’re doing it. Don’t let the world get you down, you are the shit! Happy mother’s day, part 2!

To all of the father’s out there, even if you don’t do as much as you should at home, thank you for being there.

To my own father, my road dog, my first love: Thank you for being awesome! Even though you complain and act crazy, I wouldn’t change you for the world. My crazy Mississippian! I love you dad!

If you are a dad and you aren’t in your child’s life, here’s a big FUCK YOU from all the mom’s around the world!

Happy Father’s Day!

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You wouldn’t know unless I told you

By Jenna

I love my husband. He is intelligent (which is sooo sexy), optimistic, encouraging, and much more. The best part is that he loves and accepts me for who I am. He doesn’t have a veil over his eyes about me. He sees my flaws, and shows me how I am perfect. He is my opposite in so many ways. I have tattoos and piercings, I cuss, I drank too young, I smoked too young, I dye my hair crazy colors, and I overall am an outspoken person. He is not. He has NEVER uttered a cuss word (his sisters are my proof from his childhood). He doesn’t care for tattoos or piercings on himself, he didn’t drink before age 21, and he never smoked anything. I love weed, him… he hates the smell. He swears he would partake if he could cover up the smell.

I know what you’re thinking… WTF?! How do they even live together? Well, I’ll tell you how we make it work. From the outside, you can’t tell I smoke weed. Ya, I have tattoos and dyed hair, but by talking to me, you’d never know.

I keep my husband and marriage happy with one simple rule:

Clean the fuck up!

I have a full routine each time I smoke. So, without further adieu, here is how I trick the world and keep my hubby happy.

Step 1 – Get HIGH!

Roll Mr.J or two, pack a bowl, however you toke, get that ganja lit!

We good? You got that part down, huh? Yea, me too! Ok, let’s go to the next step.

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STEP 2 – Visine Ya’ll

Cherry eyes is cute, unless you need to convince a disapproving mother-in-law that you aren’t one of the evil people that smokes “Marijuana” (in the best Mexican accent I can muster). I’ve seen a post about a chick that does it before she smokes and after, I really think that is overkill. Once after you smoke is all you really need, until you smoke again. Ok, our eyes are clear, next step.

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STEP 3 – The Fast Wash

I keep a Dove bar soap on the sink because they are lightly scented and have done well in the past to combat my super oily skin. I also have used the soft soaps, but they don’t seem to do as well for my skin. Do a quick wash of my hands and face to get that sticky off. I don’t usually wear make-up, so the face washing isn’t an issue for me. For you beautiful people who enjoy decorating yourself, you can purchase the Clean & Clear oil absorbing sheets. Blot the oil away from your face without smudging your fantastic face painting. If I was better at applying make-up I would likely wear it more often. 

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STEP 3.5 – Brush Your Teeth 

I say this is 3.5 because I’m already at the sink. Brush your damn teeth, you probably don’t do it often enough anyway. If you can remember, floss too and your dentist bill will thank you. All of this feels so awesome while high! Brushing my teeth and washing my face makes sure I get lots of extra kisses from my honey.

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STEP 4 – Body Spray

I had to experiment with perfumes and body sprays. I love the smell of flowers, but in perfumes they smell like my grandma. I choose a fruity smell because they can be powerful enough to cover up my Cannabis flower smell. I found a body spray that does the job, but it is still not as strong as perfume. Yes, that is a Jessica Simpson perfume. 

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All of my actual clean up steps take maybe 5 minutes and make a difference to my honey. He can’t smell Mary Jane on me and I get extra loves. So, there you have it, I can trick the world into thinking I’m not a stoner and make my marriage a little less stressful. Do you have a routine that I should try? Let me know, I might do a video in your honor, shout out included!]

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