saditycents











{November 6, 2017}   The Struggle is Real

Its almost 1 am and this nursing mama should be asleep instead I am awake. I can’t even say I’m wide awake, I’m just barely awake, yet there is so much to do. How does one balance it all? How do you function as CFO of our home, chef, property manager, laundress, and full-time child care provider. All while trying to eak out a semblance of a career (which has take a major back seat, I mean right now its not even in the trunk, its hitched to a trailer and holding on for dear life), lose weight, stay presentable (which means doing my hair every day) , and trying to actually interact more than just feeding  the aforementioned child. Sure teaching her French right now is a little much, but I also don’t want her just staring at the ceilings between feedings and diaper changes. How do you accomplish it all? Right now it doesn’t feel like anything can be dropped. Don’t manage the finances and rental property? Don’t prepare whole food meals for the family? Don’t do laundry?

The go to answer is have your husband help more. But if he is already extremely helpful between classes and work and taking on a major portion of the cleaning all while dealing with Uncle Sam on a daily bases what more can you ask before you both are overwhelmed? Right now my solution is that I overload myself to keep from overloading him. It seems like men can’t handle stress at the level women can. I don’t know if there is an answer. There’s just the question at one in the morning. How do you balance it all? The struggle is so real.

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Our latest adventure, hubby going back to school, has taken us to one of the most affluent cities in the state. This place is gorgeous and I feel blessed to live here, but it is abundantly clear that the community was designed to price people out. 

According to Area Vibes the cost of living on average is 50% higher than the state average. More than ever fabulous budgeting is necessary. Even basic amenities cost more here. My task as CFO for my family is to not only make our dollar stretch, in a place where it seems status quo to throw money away, but to also make it grow. This is no easy task considering we are here as  students and veterans, meaning we are already way behind the income curve. 

To put it in perspective:

 Cost Of Living Index

Each cost of living index is based on a national average of 100. If the amount is below 100, it is lower than the national average. If the amount is above 100, it is higher than the national average.

Cost of living index

City: 157

State: 115

Goods & Services index

City: 136

State: 106

Groceries index

City: 125

State: 107

Health care index

City: 128

State: 119

Housing index

City: 215

State: 135 

I choose to look at this as a challenge to put my Sadity Cents to the test and get back to my roots. Wish me luck and follow along as I figure out life outside the military and in wealthy suburbia. 



Once nausea subsided from the first trimester, heartburn kicked in. I am having a hard time not relying the go to over-the-counter medicines for relief. Most contain sodium bicarbonate and magnesium trisilicate which really isn’t healthy for pregnant women.  The go to advice is to avoid acidic foods, eat smaller meals, and avoid eating before bed. But I already do all of that. The other day, I ordered tea at a cafe. There was nothing to eat there except pastries and bread. I’m trying to reduce my sugar and anyways, bread give me heartburn. I literally had nothing but tea and… (you guest it) heartburn. So what’s a gal to do?

Here are some natural suggestions for heartburn. I’ve also added whether they worked for me:

  • Water – Basically this is the cure for everything in life. Pregnancy makes the consumption of water both necessary and difficult for me. I drink my water best in large gulps throughout the day, except when you have a growing person inside and hormones raging, consuming anything in large amounts just doesn’t happen. I sip water all day, but apparently not enough to reduce the fire in my chest.

  • Raw apple cider vinegar

  • Fresh lemon in water- This made my heartburn feel worse in my opinion.

  • Ginger tea

  • Coconut water

  • Fennel seeds

  • Peppermint

  • Yogurt or Milk

  • High Enzyme Foods

  • Fermented foods

  • HCL & Pepsin

  • Bentonite Clay – Now this is an old remedy from the south. The fact that it sells in health food stores for $10/ ounce is ridiculous to me. Especially since poor black women have been using it for years, and its use is consider low-end and almost witch crafty or superstitious. But whatever, it really does work and is good for adding nutrients to the body.

  • Aloe Vera – This is the best solution I have found. It last longer than anything else. Before aloe vera, I literally had been sleeping at. 90-degree angle. Anything less cause severe burning in my chest. I have been hard to avoid prescriptions so I am glad I finally discovered the drink I enjoyed in Korea actually is useful for my pregnancy. 

  • Almonds

 

Resources:

https://www.mamanatural.com/pregnancy-heartburn/

http://www.myhealthtips.in/2014/04/natural-cures-for-heartburn-in-pregnant-women.html



Ok so the title isn’t exactly proper English but you get the reference right?

This isn’t a long post I just figured I’d share my pregnant decision making process when deciding to go somewhere.  This literally was my thought pattern about five minutes ago. Maybe others can relate?

Responsible Me: Ok, you said you’d get up after your nap. So get up! You have to be there in half hour and you already said you were going. 

Pregnant Me: Yes but I’m pregnant I’m sure they will understand if I don’t show up. 

Responsible Me: Really do you want to be that person who uses the baby as an excuse? Be a person of you word and get up. 

Pregnant Me: Ok but I have to put on make up… Ugh… And real pants… Yuck!

Responsible Me: This is why you should go, you haven’t left the house in two days. You need to actually get dressed at some point this week.

Pregnant Me: This is true. Once I get there I’ll probably be happy I went. Ok. I’m getting up. 

Responsible Me: Good girl!

Pregnant Me: I’m going to the event. 

Responsible Me: That’s right!

Pregnant Me: But wait I have to find a bra that fits…

Responsible Me: We’re not going…

THE END



All this for $40! Keep in mind one of the diapers with insert is $20…yay!



{June 7, 2017}   Sadity Baby?

Yep! After heartbreak and false hopes we’re adding a baby to our fabulous and frugal life.



“Twizzle Twazzle Twozzle Twum, Time for this one to come home.” There used to be an old cartoon that featured “Tootle the Turtle.”

Tootle Turtle

Tootle would always get himself into all sorts of scraps in alternate worlds and on adventures and Mr. Wizard would summon him home. Well that time has finally come home for us. My husband has served in the US Air Force for twenty years. For us that means, he is retiring and we are re-entering the civilian world. Mr. Wizard was always trying to teach Tootle that he was best off and safest in the comfort of home. While I admire the lesson, I don’t know if we are ready to fully embrace it. We are leaving the military; my husband after 20 years of service, me after almost 30 years as a dependent. Yet neither one of us are mourning. We are excited for our next adventure. In the mean time, of course I will provide resources for this transition.

To start off: Here are few tips when deciding how you will move and what you are entitle to for the final PCS:

    1. Who should we see before retirement? There are some mandatory appointments that the service member must attend before the final out processing is complete. However, you’d be surprised at how few spouses think to go to those appointments as well. So far we have been to about five appointments and/ or classes and I am always the only spouse. If you can’t accompany your service member through all of the TAPS process at least go to these classes and meetings:
      • Survivor Benefits Plan – There is a face to face meeting that requires both of your signatures. If your SBP counselor doesn’t insist on your presence, insist on  it for yourself. You want to be able to ask all of your questions because the SBP is a one shot deal. Once the paperwork is signed its hard to undo. Granted you have to give your consent to be cut out to of the plan, but you may have other questions about remarriage after death, protection for future children, etc.
      • Boots to Business Lecture- Even if you are not sure you want to start a business. Its good to know your options. There are so many programs out there to help veterans and their military spouses start businesses that you should really just take advantage of good information.
      • 10 Steps to a Federal Job – This is a great job for both members of a military couple. Often retirement can mean a change in dynamics. Spouses who haven’t worked in a long time, may consider full-time employment now that moving every few years isn’t a factor. Federal employment is always a consideration. It’s the closest you will get to a military career, and for some veterans and spouses that is comforting.
      • Budget portion of TAPS – In many military families the spouse takes care of the finances because they are the consistent partner on the home front. Thus, its so important that spouses get involved in the transition budget portion of transition training. One, so you can help fill any gaps on your existing budget and financial plan. Two, because its your future too. Don’t leave your service member to create a mock budget that has no relevance to your real life. Take the help and make your budget as realistic as possible. It may be difficult to get advice later.
    2. What entitlements are available to me?Separating or Retiring Military Service Members

      Are you separating or retiring from service? Read more on what you need to know regarding your travel claim at the end of your military service. You are authorized the following entitlements:

      Monetary Allowance in Lieu of Transportation (MALT)
      Plus (Per Diem)
      Dependent Travel
      Personally Procured Moves (PPM)
      Advance Payments

 

  1. Where will the military pay to move me? If you are,
    • SEPARATING: You must complete your travel before the 181st day (6 months) after your Separation Date on your orders. And, your travel is limited to your Home of Record (HOR) or your Place Entering Active Duty (PLEAD)
    • RETIRING: You must complete your home of selection (HOS) travel one year from the retirement date on your orders. Your travel is not limited to your HOR or PLEAD. You may claim travel to any location within the U.S. you are planning to reside after retiring
  2. How long am I entitled to military pay or a military move after retirement?
    • According to the regulation that governs military travel, your final move must be made within one year of your retirement, unless you apply for and receive an extension.
  3. How much can we make if we move ourselves verses have the military move us? PPM or DITY moves are known for making the service family money. But this may not always be the case because there’s no set rule that you will make money. Instead you make the best decision base on the information. Here are some resources to help make that decision:

 

Resources:

https://www.dfas.mil/militarymembers/travelpay/armypcs/endofmilitaryservice.html

http://www.belvoir.army.mil/jppsoma/files/FAQ/retirement%20entitlements%20info%20paper.pdf

http://www.military.com/spouse/military-life/retiring-from-military/qb-how-long-does-a-retiree-qualify-for-a-final-pcs.html



{February 1, 2017}  

You know that time where life is happening so fast and all of its blog worthy but you can’t seem to keep up with it all? Yea, me too. The last six months have been a blur of blogable events and yet I haven’t really blogged. So I figured maybe if I just list everything that’s been going on then I can organize my thoughts and pump out some posts. So here we go:

  1. Husband and I developed a fertility diet for me after weeks of research based on some great books and blogs. 
  2. We found out we were pregnant after one cycle on the diet. Which was wonderful because we’d been trying for awhile and had received really distressing news from the doctor. I attribute a lot of this to faith in action. I had faith God would make a way, but I didn’t sit on my laurels either. 
  3. We celebrated a milestone birthday for hubby with a trip to Yellowstone National Park. It was amazing and we loved it. 
  4. Then I went about finding the right care provider by of course researching. Who would have know this sadity girl is crunchy when it comes to her baby. I wasn’t impressed with the apathetic or overly medical options I was being offered with traditional medicine so we picked a midwife. What! It’s actually becoming more common but mine is not associated with a hospital so for me that meant I could seek the care I want and not the treatments dictated to me. 
  5. I have had to do a lot of traveling for work and family in the last few months. Which has helped me come up with a pretty stellar travel “must haves” list for the pregnant woman. 
  6. I also switched my fertility diet and exercise routine to a prenatal one. I didn’t follow one particular plan but rather I took practice options from several to create a plan for a real pregnant person. You know one who is has a  below average fitness commitment and likes food (even if it does make her sick right now).
  7. I put together a registry early on based on great advice from my sister and mother, two vets in the game. It’s also gender neutral!
  8. I’ve resisted the new mom stereotype of everything must be new and instead opted for a Sadity Cents type nursery and baby preparation. 
  9. I’m prepping for taxes because organization and life don’t stop with a baby. 
  10. And of course cooking! I will say that’s fewer and far between because standing and smelling for too long just aren’t working right now. 
  11. As a bonus I figured out the man I married is awesome! And really is the best daddy-to-be. He’s consistently take on a number of chores and pampering techniques to make this a wonderful pregnancy. 

Follow the links, which I will add as I write the relevant posts. Said posts will be written in between naps, so please be patient. 🙂



{December 19, 2016}   Let’s Play Catch Up

It’s nearing the end of the year and I’m in a reflective mood.  I was looking at all of the photos on my camera and all of the blog posts that I started and didn’t finish. Some don’t even seem relevant, but that is the beauty of blogging. Someone may read this years from now and my blogs are completely relevant. to them. So I decided why not finish up some of the vacation series and other topics series I never finished so at least for posterity there will be a complete set and the timeline of my life won’t be missing large chunks.  So over the next few weeks you may see several posts that are linked to older posts. I’m just playing catch up and then I can write about all of the current and amazing things that are going on in my life. See you next year my friends!



{September 6, 2016}   The Lost Art of Gratitude 


I was on Facebook today and I had to just turn it off. Have you noticed how angry people are and how negative. I’m all for the political discourse I hope it makes people more informed. But I’m talking about highlighting the negative people of the world. Whether it’s a crazy ex, an aggravating co-worker , or a family member who can’t stay out of trouble; why broadcast it? And more importantly why give them that energy?

So today I wanted to highlight something awesome. When my husband and I moved to our new base we had more than a few struggles with receiving our household goods (by the way the drama is on going). We had no furniture for almost a month. Most important to me was we had no dining room table. We like to eat dinner together at a table. I mentioned this at a dance workout class I attend and another spouse overheard.  Immediately she offered up a card table she had, brought it over for me and came bearing cookies. It was such a sweet no strings attached action. She told me to return it whenever we got a table and I was so grateful. She probably will never fully know how much it meant to me. Anyway, in gratitude I didn’t just want to return her table so I bought a small gift. It’s not much but it has a theme. She’s a mom of 4 or 5 kids, so I made a mini relaxation kit. 

I still have some amazing organic tea unopened from Korea so I am giving her some of that , a yummy smelling candle, a cute cup, and this cute little tea kettle tea strainer. Once upon a time people did nice things for one another and highlighted the good in people. What are you grateful for? How have you tried to be a blessing to someone else?



et cetera