Thursday, January 29, 2009

so, what's next?

Last time Tim spoke w/ the union was on Monday, when he dropped off his application. He spoke to the person there, and there are still no openings, but the saddest thing from that encounter was that Tim found out that there is not a single other apprentice that is out of work right now. He is a "pre apprentice" right now since he hasn't started classes (if he'd gone to the union just a few weeks earlier last fall, he would be in his first year now instead of in his first year next year). The person told Tim to call again on Monday if he hadn't heard anything by then.

I just don't know what to feel anymore. Monday is approaching again, and the next day will be three weeks of Tim being out of work. We have not yet heard about our unemployment application. I almost got excited a few minutes ago when Tim's phone rang, but it was a random person letting him know of a job fair on Wednesday that Tim is a "perfect match" for. Tim said that on Monday if (when?) there's still no work available, that he is going to make plans to try to do something else. Please pray for there to be a job available for him Monday. After that, the level of stress and uncertainty does nothing but increase, and I'm already so stressed that I'm losing my appetite, which is not good since I'm already small. The next step is baldness from pulling out my hair.

Monday, January 26, 2009

singing a song from bible class

Here's Lydia singing "Jesus Loves Me."

Saturday, January 24, 2009

my little "slave"

Even just at 2 years old, Lydia is already such a big helper. After she's done eating, she takes her plate to the kitchen and puts it on the cabinet (stretching to reach b/c she's still so short, lol). She also likes to help me fold diapers:

After they're all folded, she helps me put them away in their proper compartments (we have big diapers which I put away, and then she puts away the little diapers, the wipes, the microfiber towels and the fleece liners). It's really so cute to watch her b/c she's so happy doing it (check out her "I'm so proud of myself" grin at about 48 seconds into the video, lol).

As for Tim's job, we are still waiting on a call from the union. Tuesday will have been two weeks of waiting. We did apply for unemployment the day he got laid off, so hopefully we'll be approved for that, but it takes at least 4 weeks to process that application. Then even if we are approved, it'll be tight and skinny while we're on it since what we would get on that isn't what his full salary would be if he were working.

I'm starting to get a little nervous about the Bible class I'm teaching next quarter. It's the 4&5 year old class, and it's going to be a FULL class. I know that it'll end up being OK but it's still so nerve-wracking doing all the preparations and trying to make sure there's enough going on to fill up the time. I really love that age, though, and think it'll be a fun class.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

another time of unemployment has begun

The current project that Tim was working on has been winding down, and they've started laying people off. A few weeks ago, he warned me that he could be laid off, and Monday he came home with his final paycheck. He did file for unemployment, but based on this page, we don't qualify. Hopefully the union will call him today or tomorrow so he can go back to work next week. This month was already so thin that we were going to have to dip into our savings before it's over. Now our savings will be entirely gone. :( I do have a few very VERY small orders on the side, and my transcription is starting up again next week, but that's nowhere near what we need.

ETA later: After receiving the mail today, I have a bit of renewed hope, b/c we may be able to get unemployment benefits after all. I apparently misread the meaning of that page I linked. We will have to wait a week before benefits kick in, though.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

thousands of work-at-home crafters will be out of a job next month

Unless some serious amendments are passed in the new CPSIA, I and thousands of other crafters of children's items (clothing, toys, cloth diapers, etc.) will be unable to legally sell our products after February 10th. The CPSIA was written in reaction to the lead toys that came over from China two Christmases ago. I am all for keeping led out of my daughter's toys, but this law is taking things way too far.

- The testing required is at LEAST $400/pop, and every unique item in every manufacturing run must be tested. I sell a set of ham/cheese cracker stacks made of cotton yarn (the yarn is made here in the USA as well) for about $10. I would need to make one extra cracker, one extra ham, and one extra cheese and send them off for testing for $1200. I can't afford that, therefore I would either operate illegallly and risk a $100,000 fine (which I can't afford either), or just go out of business altogether. Countless other work-at-home moms are in the same boat, making products that are already inherently lead-free.

- Signing this into law (and it IS already a law, we can only hope for amendments at this point) put not only thousands of sole proprietors out of business, but also the resale shops. Do you buy used clothing for your children? I do. But I won't be able to do that after February 10 either, because the law requires that it be the end product that is tested, and there's no way for the resale shops to be able to test all their inventory in each individual store.

- President-elect Obama is already talking up a stimulus package, but how stimulated can the economy BE if 80% of the people are suddenly out of work and unable to sell things?

Please click the link below and VOTE to Save Handmade Toys from the CPSIA. I would also suggest writing your Senators and Representatives. I wrote them and only received back a "canned" reply, if I even received a reply at all, but the more people that write them, the more aware they will start to be about this issue., Save Handmade Toys from the CPSIA

Friday, January 2, 2009

another year gone

Wow, I started this blog four years ago. Feels like just yesterday. What will this new year bring? Only God knows what He has planned for us.

As for me, I'm in the thick of trying to prepare to teach the 4 and 5 year olds' Bible class next quarter. I don't yet know how I'm going to make it through the next 5 months (2 more months of prep and then 3 months of teaching). But, I made it through the 4th and 5th graders last year, so I will be able to make it through this challenge as well. Then hopefully I can take a short break before teaching again.

Lydia continues to be both a challenge and a joy at the same time. In just a few more days, she'll be 25 months old. Still absolutely NO interest in potty training, but I did finally move her up to the next size of cloth diapers. Her infant-sized ones were just getting too ragged and holey. I still have a big stash of unwashed, undyed, brand new diapers under her crib (from back when I was going to dye them to sell), so I could get some more with little trouble, but it was just "time" to move her up to the next size.

I'm in the middle of doing some decluttering and so far it's going well. I was pretty intense with it earlier this week, so I could finish up the "public areas" of the apartment before DH's family came into town for a few days. Now I have a lot more to do and lots of time in which to do it. I have one remaining play food order and then I need to update my Hyena Cart store, since I've been neglecting it while I sell on a message board instead.

My trip up to see my family last month was great. My nephews (5, 3.5 and 2.5) enjoyed how Lydia has grown. They were surprised that she could talk to them now. lol. I got to try out my sister's Wii Fit, while my family was behind me on the couch, laughing at my futile efforts to hit the soccer balls with my head and to dodge the shoes and the panda bear heads that were being hurtled at me.

It snowed, briefly, our last morning in Amarillo, so I bundled Lydia up and sent her out into the backyard. She still can't say blended consonants (i.e. she says 'nap instead of snap), so she kept calling the snow "sah-now." It was cute to watch her walk around in it.

I also still have to eventually post pictures of her birthday party, but haven't organized those pictures yet. Maybe next week. :p