I'm Grateful For...

I’m not going to lie, I haven’t been feeling the ‘holiday spirit’ this year. Maybe it’s because my friends and family are 10+ hours away from me. Maybe it’s because Dave is on a tropical island a thousands of miles away. Maybe it’s because I don’t want to think about trying to fit a Christmas tree into my tiny studio apartment. However… 
One thing that I enjoy doing every year is writing my “I’m Grateful For…” list the day before Thanksgiving. So, here it is.
 I’m Grateful For…
1.       Having a beautiful, healthy, energetic, smart, funny, three year old boy. He keeps me busy and always makes me strive to do my best in everything.
2.       David Beneigh who is my rock and source of strength. He works so hard in Med School studying for ten or more hours a day but always makes time for me.  He makes me blissfully happy and I don’t know what I’d do without him.
3.       My parents who have been so supportive of me while I took the training wheels off of my life and have been out in Louisville on my own. You’ve been awesome through it all.
4.       Mr and Mrs Beneigh who have also been a HUGE source of support. Thank you for always opening up your home to us and for everything you do. We ALWAYS look forward to spending time with “Mr and Mrs ‘Neigh”. (GO REDSKINS! ...and Steelers. Maybe)
5.       Ashley Carlson. What can I say, you’ll always be my girl! From going to Derby, to partying at Bearnos, to just chilling watching movies at my place, we always knew how to have a good time. I miss you and wish you luck in everything that you’re pursuing.
6.       Finishing the application process to school. I start classes on January 10th which I can hardly believe. It’s been a long time coming but I couldn’t be more excited.
7.       My job which I LOVE. I couldn’t ask for a better boss than Terrence Bailey. The opportunities that have been awarded to me here I know I’ll carry for life.
8.       December 3rd. Why? Because it will be my last court date to finalize the divorce. I will FINALLY be able to put the past in the past.
9.       My car which has survived everything from my blizzard trip (thanks again for road tripping it with me, Chris & Lynds!!!!!!) from VA to Louisville, to drives out to Chicago, to simply getting me to work. Thanks for not breaking down on me (*knock on wood*).
10.   Government aid.  If I didn’t have that help through food stamps and subsodized child care I know there is no way I’d have been able to pay all my bills.
11. SeasonedGamers because after five years of being a part of the community you all feel more like family than ever.
12. Louisville. My new home that I adore. For opening doors of opportunities that I never thought I'd have. For the adventures. For making me a better person. Cheers.

Happy Holidays everyone.


It's Official!

I’m officially a college student. Wow!

I’m a ton of emotions right now. Excited, nervous, anxious, happy, relieved…
It’s been a long time coming, but I’ve finally got my act together to start the journey that most of my peers are bringing to an end next semester. I still have a few tasks to complete before registering for classes, but going to orientation and receiving my temporary student ID made me feel so proud!
The coolest thing is that the campus is 5 minutes walking distance from my apartment. The crummy part is that since they don’t provide any childcare for single parents like me, I will be limited (for the time being) to take online courses only. I've also decided to take it slow, ease my way back in to being a student and start out simply part time for the first semester. In the Fall I'll evaluate how I’m doing and decide if it’s time to jump ship, quit my job, and be a full time student. The thought scares the heck out of me, but I know that putting the time and effort into being a full time student and getting my Bachelors sooner rather than later is a necessary evil to finally be able to get my Certification to interpret/translate American Sign Language before I’m 100 years old. Ok, a little dramatic, but you get the point.
So, come January I’m going to be one busy momma. Working full time, being a single Mommy full time, and adding school part-time on top of it all. I guess just writing “time to kiss my free time goodbye” would do the trick! Not the typical college experience, but hey, everyone's gotta start somewhere, right? Time to buckle down and get ‘er done.
In other news, I have been pouring HOURS into studying my tush off for two state exams; Life & Health Insurance License and Property & Casualty Insurance License. Both tests are 100 questions, both study manuals are about 630 pages. That’s a LOT of material to understand and memorize for such limited amount of questions they ask. And of course you HAVE to know all of the material in case they pull some obscure question and test you on it-which they can, and WILL do (why wouldn't they, right? /eyeroll). I’m super nervous, and it’s been really strenuous but I have a positive outlook and I’m excited to finally get my Insurance Licenses. If nothing else, it’s an awesome fall back career and something to hold me over until I’m a full time student.
I’m hoping to take my first state exam (Property & Casualty) on Monday November 22nd, so send good thoughts my way this week as I try to juggle studying for this bear of a test, working, and taking care of PJ!

P.S. Oh, other side note… for those of you following my quest for Pop Culture movie list, I AM still doing that. As you can see I’ve been super busy (two 40 hour week pre licensing courses with 2-3 hours of homework each night to prep for the state exams– YUCK!) but I will do my best to watch a movie at some point this week/weekend.


Oh how time flies!

Leaves are falling off tree's. It's about that time to pull out the winter coat. When I get in the car first thing in the morning I can't wait for the heat to get going. It's November. Wow. Where has all the time gone?

Looking back:
Living with my parents temporarily and still working at Prison Fellowship International, what I believe will always be one of my favorite jobs, I was in the midst of a lot of life changing decisions November 2009. In fact, that is when I started taking baby steps planning my move out of Virginia to Louisville. I remember being so thrilled about the thought of change, being so scared because I wasn't sure I could pull off such a move, but above all, I remember being so motivated and excited to create a good life for my son and I. A life we could call our own and years down the road reminise and say "that was awesome".

I've been in Louisville for NINE months now. During this time I've been blessed with some of the best friends I've ever had, given the opportunity for an amazing, budding career, bonded in a whole new way with my precious baby boy, enjoyed spending priceless time with the love of my life, and have learned to make something out of nothing when times get tough. I wouldn't trade anything for this experience.

Looking forward:
Words cannot express how eager I am about the future. There will be more details to come on this soon, but for now just know that there is another huge opportunity looming right around the corner. Plans are currently in the works, so after things get firmed up I'll be sure to make an announcement.

For now, PJ and I will just keep on keepin' on...