Being Grateful: Twenty-Fifth Edition / Ramblings

Another week, another month. I knew April was going to fly by, considering moving was going to be pretty time consuming. It’s crazy to think we’ve been here for three weeks already! At the time of writing, we still have a handful of boxes left to unpack. R and I have been more focused on relaxing this week, what with all the traveling we’ve been doing every weekend.

This weekend we’re hoping to explore the city a little bit. I’m not sure if we will go directly into the center, or just browse around the outskirts (where we are). I mean, there’s a mall down the road from us, and I still don’t know half the stores that are in there. That’s probably a good thing…

I included the ramblings part in the title because I’ve been thinking about a lot this past week.

being grateful

This week was very low-key, so being grateful wasn’t exactly on my mind a lot. That sounds bad, but I’ve honestly been in a funk since moving. It’s gone up and down, but I have to admit to feeling useless without a job. So many of us are defined by what we do, and I don’t necessarily think that’s a good thing. I never felt that connected to a job, but the simple distinction between being employed and unemployed is enough for me.

It’s kind of funny, because R doesn’t care at all. He’s being really supportive, which amazes me. I’m over here freaking out about not making any money, and he’s sitting there saying we’re not desperate for it, so what does it matter? (And this is why I insisted on a probably larger-than-necessary emergency fund.)

It matters in a personal sense. I think we all like to know we are worth something, and receiving a paycheck is validation in some sense. Someone is paying us to provide value. Right now, I don’t feel like I have any. I know I put myself in this position with the move, I just didn’t think I would feel this way after all was said and done.

Where to go from here

being gratefulI know it’s silly and it will pass. I’m currently at a crossroads, where I want to get my toes wet with freelancing, but feel like I should look for an actual job. Obviously, as many of you know, freelancing isn’t steady, and for someone who has no client base to start with, it could be many months before I’m bringing in what I used to. While I have enough saved up to last many months, and we’re still working on lowering our expenses (utilities, insurance), I’m craving a little “stability.” In quotes, because nothing is certain with jobs.

That said, I’m also grateful for the bloggers that have reached out to me. I plan on brainstorming some ideas for guest posts, and trying to put myself out there. I could probably use a blogging mentor, but I’m not entirely sure where to get one.

In any case, people are always saying to just ask. What a simple concept. You need a favor? Just ask. I’ve always struggled with this, though. As a shy, introverted person, I often feel like I’m bothering someone if I send them an unsolicited email. Yet, I love getting emails from fellow bloggers!

Back to being grateful

I try to stick to a hopeful tone in these posts, but I didn’t really feel like dividing them, so back to being grateful we go!

  • being gratefulI’m glad that we had a really relaxing weekend last week. We didn’t do much except hang out by the pool. I attempted to get some color, but I tend to reflect the sun away, so that didn’t really happen.
  • I’m grateful that we went food shopping and found some of our favorites on sale. I’ll be posting about cost comparisons here soon, but let’s just say food is more expensive here.
  • I’m grateful that R is crazy and wants to work 50 hours a week. Even though he is on target for what we estimated he would be making per month, he wants to make more. He will be taking advantage of going in every other Saturday for a half day to make up for it.
  • I’m kind of grateful this week went by so fast. I can’t wait until we go back to my parents for Mother’s day so we can pick up the cats! They’re still very much enjoying lounging around there – one has made the basket her bed.
  • I’m grateful that we found a nice patio set to put out on our balcony for $35. We couldn’t really pass that up. We also found a set of 3 bar stools; they were originally $50, but the owner offered them to us for $40. We didn’t even have to ask!

That’s it for me! I hope you all enjoy your weekend!

What are you grateful for this week? Do you have any plans for Mother’s Day yet?



  1. DC @ Young Adult Money May 2, 2014 at 6:53 AM

    I’m glad you had a relaxing weekend and I think you should really consider getting a full-time job and do more freelancing on the side. I think it can get hectic when you take on too much side work, but if you spend the next 6-9 months really ramping up your side income you might be able to do it full-time and still have that stability you are looking for.

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:16 PM

      I had that in mind when I switched to my last job, and it just didn’t work out for me. I know you have a crazy work ethic (which I admire!), but I found myself way too tired at the end of the day to be productive. If I get a full-time job that I love, that would be awesome, but I probably wouldn’t pursue freelancing. I guess it comes down to valuing time over money – I’m not aiming to make tons of money, I just want to be happy with what I’m doing.

  2. Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life May 2, 2014 at 7:17 AM

    April really did fly by, as did this whole year so far… I wonder if it’s a blogging thing, where so much of your “free time” is consumed by getting work done on the blog that time just passes you by faster than ever.

    As for a mentor, there’s a network called bloggers helping bloggers that you should check out. (The value really depends on who you get assigned to). My two cents: don’t shy away from taking on a freelance gig here and there. If it’s an article once a week, that’s definitely something you can continue to commit to even if you get a full time job.

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:14 PM

      It could be! As I’ve been seeing, commenting on posts and doing general blogging-things can make the time pass very quickly.

      I will have to give it a look. I’m definitely willing to take on what I can at this point, just to gain some experience and insight.

  3. Tonya@Budget and the Beach May 2, 2014 at 8:48 AM

    I can totally understand how you’re feeling because not only that, but you are in a new city, so it would be nice to have a built in method of meeting some new people at a job. I will definitely keep you in mind if I need a little help with something! I’m not doing anything for mom’s day as my mom is in Michigan, but I am going to fly her out to LA in July on my Southwest cc points!

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:12 PM

      Yes, exactly. R’s coworkers have been very friendly and welcoming, and I guess I’m a little jealous that he has some form of interaction outside of just me! I feel like I’m stuck in a box. Aw, that’s so nice of you to fly her out!

  4. Shoeaholicnomore May 2, 2014 at 8:50 AM

    Now, take my comment for what it’s worth because I still have A LOT to learn about blogging, freelancing, etc, but I think I’d consider a part time job (not full time as DC suggests) that way you are bringing in some income while pursuing freelancing. It’s really hard to work a full time job and pursue things on the side. It sounds like you have a lot saved up, which is great and could allow you to work only part-time while starting to pursue your “side hustles” until they become regular and your income from them is enough to leave your part-time job. Boy, this was kind of a ramble, I hope it makes sense :)

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:11 PM

      It makes sense! My game plan all along was to find a part-time job once we get fully settled (things are taken care of with the DMV and whatnot), I’m just afraid of what might happen. I’ve had so many bad outcomes at my previous jobs, and I’d rather not relive those experiences. But we have to do what we have to do to make money, right?

  5. Kassandra May 2, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    You have a lot happening to you in terms of life changes so take a breath and try not to create stress because the expectations you have for yourself. Whether it’s a full-time or part-time job you find, the idea is to create a baseline for your day so you don’t feel like you’re not being “productive”. Keep us posted on your job hunt!

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:09 PM

      Thanks Kassandra. It’s true, I have high expectations for myself and I always have. Sometimes I’m my own worst enemy.

  6. Shannon @ Financially Blonde May 2, 2014 at 10:23 AM

    Good for you for asking!! I know it is difficult, especially if you are shy about it, but there is a great quote from Wayne Gretzky that I always share “You miss 100% of the shots you never take.” Never be afraid to take a shot and ask for something, you never know what will come back to you.

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:08 PM

      Yes, I like that quote as well! We can’t really get ahead in life if we’re not willing to take some sort of risk.

  7. Raquel@Practical Cents May 2, 2014 at 10:35 AM

    I think having a part time job is not a bad idea. You’ll have some steady income coming in while pursuing your freelancing.

    Wow, Is that pool part of your apartment complex?

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:08 PM

      The going wage around here at least seems to be a bit more than I expected it to be, which is nice. Working 20 hours a week should cover everything. I wish! That’s the pool in my parents community. I love the jacuzzi!

  8. Kali @ Common Sense Millennial May 2, 2014 at 12:04 PM

    I would at least look for something part-time while you build up your freelancing client base and experience. Even when things happen relatively quickly, in real time getting started feels like it just crawls by because you won’t be actively working full workdays – not at first, anyway. Having a part time job to bring in steady income as you build your freelancing would keep your finances in good order AND keep you from beating yourself up over the growing pains that are inevitable with a freelance-style career. Even though I feel like I was able to build up work quickly once I got going, it took me from July to January to “get going!” I have no doubt that things will take off for you once you grab a foothold – it’s finding that place to squeak in and up that’s the hard part. So stick with it, ask everyone you know, and at least find a fun little part time job to help you cover your basic expenses. Most importantly, have LOTS of self confidence! You got this, girl :)

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 1:06 PM

      Thanks for the advice! I do plan on looking for at least part-time work, but I’m hoping I can find something in an office setting so that I can keep weekends free. I’d still like to be able to visit my parents, but we’ll see. If it comes down to it, making money has to take the front seat. There are so many businesses around here, but not many job postings. I have to figure out where to look!

  9. J Rodriguez May 2, 2014 at 2:38 PM

    Hey E.M. speaking from experience, you may want to really consider finding a full time job. it took me several months of hammering before I was able to really make an income in freelance writing. Even then, I also opened a marketing firm to back me up when writing is slow. It’s best to really plan businesses rather than be forced to make money leading to hasty actions and mistakes. Once you find a job, hit the business side of thing full swing on your off times, I’m sure it will work out in the long run!

    1. E.M. May 2, 2014 at 7:09 PM

      Thanks for the advice. I have to work out our budget and see how much I need to make to be comfortable. Since R got a raise, it helps. My original plan was to try and start on things when I had my last full-time job, but I couldn’t find the time. I guess that might say I don’t want it enough, but I don’t want to stress myself out that much. I’d be really happy to land a great job though!

  10. anna May 2, 2014 at 9:05 PM

    Sorry to hear you’ve been experiencing some erratic emotions lately, EM. Unfortunately I am not well-versed in the freelancing world, but I hope you find something! That’s great that you’ve built up a large emergency fund and that R is so supportive in the meantime. Hope something works in your favor soon!

    1. E.M. May 4, 2014 at 11:15 PM

      Thanks Anna! I hope your new job is going well!

  11. Brian May 5, 2014 at 6:08 AM


    Isn’t it awful how often times we draw self worth from external factors? I’m as guilty as anyone of going so, but when you say it out loud it sounds so ridiculous. But I’m like you….I have a hard time getting over things, and accepting a new reality. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to!

    Great job putting yourself out there! Sometimes, asking for help is a lot harder than it sounds. But to help yourself get over it, reverse the situation. If you had a friend come to you and ask for help, what would you say? In most cases the answer is ‘yes’, so don’t feel bad for asking!

    Long Term Brian

    1. E.M. May 5, 2014 at 2:23 PM

      Thanks for the comment Brian. It is pretty awful! I know I’m a great person with a lot to offer, but we all feel a little defeated at times. You’re right – I would always be willing to help out a friend; it’s foolish to think others wouldn’t want to.

  12. debt debs May 5, 2014 at 6:28 PM

    Hi EM ~ You strike me as a very social person so would benefit from some in person contact that even a part time job would bring. Can you possibly try to get temp work filling in for maternity leaves until you figure out what you really want to do and have time to build up your freelance work? I imagine for freelancing you have to make a lot of cold calls, but I could be wrong. Putting your name out like this is a good idea though because you never know who is reading and looking for someone. You write really well so I have confidence things will go well for you here if you hustle and be patient.

    1. E.M. May 5, 2014 at 6:41 PM

      Thanks Deb! Haha, I’m surprised I come across as “very social.” I’m very much an introvert, unless I’m around family or friends. I think part-time work is probably my best bet, as temp work can be just as unstable. I’m not sure if there are many recruiting agencies around here, either.


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