It kind of isn’t.
Don’t get me wrong. I am applying for as many jobs as I can. But I don’t drive due to medical reasons (basically? Screwed up eye muscles) and I have to take the bus, which only serves my hometown. (This is a special program, doorstep to doorstep, that costs a dollar a ride. And the drivers are so cool). So that brings down the list of possible places considerably. Then there’s the fact that I literally learned nothing new at my former job — as far as technology goes, anyway — so I’m finding job postings with stuff like, “Must be an expert in Excel” or “Must be a Mac user” or “Must be able to do PowerPoint presentations.” All of this except for the Mac I can do theoretically. But I don’t feel very confident about it, so I tend to skip those postings.
So I’m left with stuff that isn’t even remotely in my field. I have no problem with that, if I can’t find anything else. But I would really like to stay within my field.
Then there’s the freelance stuff, which is going okay. It’s still not steady enough, but I have every confidence that I can make it happen. And if not…well, I tried. I can continue to try even if I do get a day job. It might be hairy, and busy, but it’s not like I haven’t done that before.
It’s scary. I mean, we’re used to a certain amount of money each month. And now that I no longer have dental insurance, we’ll be paying more for my dental care. I’ve had a few medical issues which resulted in more bills (nothing huge, though) so we’ve had to do a lot of creative juggling. I’m also trying to make cheap meals or meals that I can stretch. For an example, spaghetti casserole. It’s basically spaghetti (name your noodle) with hamburger and mozzarella cheese on top. I make a whole pan of it, and it’s easily three meals. Now we don’t repeat meals, so usually we’ll have something different in between. We don’t throw away anything (unless it has gone bad, obviously!) so we’re eating lots of leftovers. That’s helped the budget tremendously.
My biggest thing right now, which sounds crazy, is books. I don’t buy clothing, or shoes, or jewelry. But I buy books! (Usually 99c or free. Maybe $1.99 if it looks really good). I used to routinely spend at least $50 on books per month. (Saying, “oh it’s just a dollar” and “it’s just under two dollars” many times does add up!). I was kind of appalled. So as soon as I was laid off, I cut myself off cold turkey. No more books for any reason. If I got Amazon cards for Christmas or whatever, I’d use those. Or I’d try to go for the free ones only (I’m on a bazillion newsletters for free books). So I got this crazy idea.
Surveys! Most of them are a crap shoot. You’d have to do like a hundred surveys to get 100 points and you don’t qualify for many. Well, Harris Poll Online is a bit different. They are affiliated with Nielson. And yes, you still have to do many surveys but you qualify for more and the points add up quicker. And, if you send them your Amazon purchase history (automated through an app), you get 300 points. You can get a variety of gift cards, but I have my eye on a $25 Amazon one. So that’s what I’m aiming to do if I find myself with free time. Lately, I haven’t had much. But that might change at some point. I tend to use times when I’m waiting at the doctor’s office or during commercial breaks if I’m watching something.
So far, I haven’t fallen off the wagon yet.
And Lord knows, I have 3000+ books on my Kindle, and at least 100-200 paperbacks/hardcovers to read so I will never run out of books to read.
I’ve challenged myself to read a book a week. Because there are so many I want to read, and I’m never making the time anymore. Lunch at work was my prime reading time.
So, things have been okay, I think. Not too bad. I do enjoy setting my own hours. I’d be nice to work from home. I guess we’ll see what’s waiting for me.