Responding to Those Comments About Large Families

Responding to Those Comments About Large Families

There are lots of posts out there in the blogging world listing charitable and kind responses to rude comments people make about having lots of kids. Which is all fine and good if that’s your style or if the people are actually interested in your response. But what about those other people?

You know the people I am talking about. The ones who when you are out and about with the brood and minding your own business, who can’t resist coming up and making a snotty comment.

Just like “an eye for an eye”, I personally prefer “snark for snark”…I’m sure that’s a verse in the bible.

Common Questions I get and responses that come in handy.

You gonna have more?

  • Yes but we are going to stop when we have an ugly one
  • Practice makes perfect

Don’t you know what causes it?

  • Yes and we like it
  • Maybe you should try it

Don’t you have a TV?

  • Yes but there are commercials
  • Yes but we have Netflix and there is a pause button

Are all of those yours?

  • No the other half are at home
  • No I thought it would be fun to bring all the kids from the neighborhood shopping

I don’t know how you do it?

  • Sometimes she’s on top and sometimes I am
  • Didn’t they have sex-ed in your school?

You might be from a large Family If

With apologies to Jeff Foxworthy…You might be from a large family if…

  • You have always shared a bedroom…and maybe a bed
  • Older siblings are mistaken for the parents of  the young ones
  • Your parents never get your name correct on the first try…or the 4th
  • There is that one pair of footsie pajamas that every kid wore
  • Every winter you get the stomach bug and spread it throughout the house, town, state and country
  • You’ve been away from your phone for 5 minutes and have 40 unread text messages
  • You are 2 years old and already an uncle
  • You learn every temperament at a family dinner
  • The only car you remember your mom owning is a full-size van
  • Clothes only handed down 2 or 3 times are considered new
  • A small gathering is still at least 50 people
  • Every day is laundry day
  • You shovel food in fast so you get enough at meals
  • You had a “bowl” haircut most of your childhood
  • Filling 2 grocery carts is a light shopping trip

Sinking Funds – Who, What, Why Etc.

Sinking Fund.

Money

What it is, why you need it, how to do it.

What it is: A savings account for known non-monthly expenses. Any expense you can reasonable predict but that you don’t get billed for monthly. Car insurance for example. What it’s not for – emergencies, fun things etc. This is not the savings account you use when your car transmission dies or when you want a new dress.

Why you need it: So you aren’t late with bills. So you aren’t stressed when you realize that you have a car insurance bill due next week. To be prepared for the expected expenses.

How to do it: figure out all non-monthly expenses for the upcoming year and set aside money each payday into a dedicated savings account.

What to account for:

  • HOA fees
  • Car insurance
  • Car registration
  • Vacation
  • Christmas, birthday and other gifts
  • Medical deductible (use a H.S.A. to cover this if you can)
  • Property tax and homeowners insurance if mortgage is paid off
  • School tuition
  • Water and Sewer bill if not monthly

My Real Life Example

High School Homeschool Tutor Fees $5,000

Property Tax $5,000

Homeowners Insurance $1,300

Quarterly Water Bill ($350 every 3 months) $1,400

Car Insurance $1,200

Car Maintenance $500

Total $14,400

Divided by 24 paychecks = 600

Every payday I have $600 automatically transferred into my Sinking Fund Savings Account.

I have 3 different savings accounts at Capital One 360: Sinking Fund, Emergency Fund and regular savings account.

I use the sinking fund for the above expenses. The emergency fund is used for the unexpected…water heater dies, roof gets a hole, you forget your wife’s birthday and need to buy your way out of the doghouse. The regular savings account is used for whatever we want…night out, weekend away etc.

sinking fund

Rob’s Marinade

Every time we serve this everyone wants the recipe!!! We marinade it mainly on chicken. But it is also good with beef or pork.

Marinade Ingredients:

  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire
  • 2 teaspoons seasoned salt
  • 2 teaspoons dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoons dried rosemary
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
  • A few cloves garlic
  • 1 chopped onion

Throw everything in a sauce pan. Bring to boil. Turn off and let cool and use.
Marinade at least 6 hours…overnight is best…tastes amazing on the grill but you could bake or broil if necessary. ENJOY!!!

World’s Easiest Cookies

THE EASIEST COOKIE RECIPE IS:

1 Cake mix, 1/2 cup of oil, 2 eggs, 1/2 cup anything (chips, nuts, raisins, etc…) Be creative with the cake mixes and additions. cook 350 for 7-12 min-they will look undercooked but are good and chewy.

Our very favorite Healthy Snack

I love the Marathon Mom blog We found so many great recipes there

This is our very favorite:

Granola Energy Balls

2 cups oats
2 cups coconut flakes
1 cup peanut butter
1 cup ground flaxseed
1 cup chocolate chips
2/3 cup honey
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon

  1. Mix all ingredients thoroughly.
  2. Roll into bite-size balls. (The size you roll them will determine how many the recipe yields. I rolled mine a little bigger and the recipe made about 18 golf-ball sized balls.)
  3. Store in fridge.

Chicken and Broccoli

Chicken and Broccoli

Good comfort food and very creamy so serve with bread or rice on the side.

1 large family pack of chicken breast: boil for about 15 min till no longer pink
2 tablespoons of lemon juice
1 large can of cream of mushroom soup (or one small can of cr. of mush and one can of cr of chick)
1/2 cup of mayo
1/2 cup of butter (original recipe says 3/4 cup but I think it is too much)
1 pack of Italian seasoning ( I think this is the secret ingredient)
1/2 cup of cheddar cheese (of course I accidentally spill more in)
1 large bag of frozen broccoli

I cut up the chicken and then mix all ingredients together (butter last because it is melted) and put in one huge dish or two small- one to freeze or give away or if you have a big family eat it all. Serve with bread for dipping in the yummy gravy and rice is good too

Working Hard Now to Play Hard Later

When your in the moment and grinding away at working, it’s important to remember what/why you are working.

Some people love their career choice and can’t wait to go to work. For me my job is a means-to-an-end. It doesn’t define me and I don’t particularly like it. I work to support and provide for the many persons living under my roof. It’s not a dream job. It’s a job I tolerate, some days better than others, and put up with to get money. It is a very shallow and base mindset I have towards my job.  So why not do something different?

A few reasons:

  • It pays decently (enough to support us and allow us to save a good size chunk).
  • I am able to work from home. No commute, $$ savings, less stress, more flexibility.
  • At this point in life I am not in a position to be taking risks.

At some point in the future, 7-10 years from now, I will pull the plug on the job and be “retired”. Then I will play hard. For now I play semi-hard. While I have to work 40 hours a week, I still get to have a fair amount of fun and do things I enjoy: family time, running, working on cars. At this point in my life it is a balancing act between Work and Play.

Frugal vs Cheap

Don’t cross the line from frugality to cheapness.

It’s great to be frugal and watch your spending and save a buck.

It’s not so great to be a cheapskate aka a miser.

What is the difference?

From dictionary.com

FRUGAL-

Economical in use or expenditure; prudently saving or sparing; not wasteful:

What your office needs is a frugal manager who can save you money without resorting to painful cutbacks.

Synonyms: thrifty, chary, provident, careful, prudent, penny-wise, scrimping; miserly, Scotch, penny-pinching.

Antonyms: wasteful, extravagant, spendthrift, prodigal, profligate.

Miser-

A person who lives in wretched circumstances in order to save and hoard money.

Synonyms: skinflint, tightwad, pinchpenny.

At a restaurant a frugal person skips the expensive cocktail or appetizer. A cheap person stiffs the waitress on her tip.

A frugal person buys quality running shoes on sale. A cheap person buys cheap knock-offs and ruins their feet.

I readily admit that I struggle with this. I am hyper-anxious to save every dollar I possibly can. Mainly for security (emergency fund) and funding our retirement accounts (financial freedom).

But there is a fine line between frugal and cheap. Lots of times in the past I would slide down the slippery slope from frugality into cheapdom. Instead of spending an extra $20 on a name brand ceiling fan that will be around longer than I will, I’d instead buy a Walmart one and have to replace it again in 5 years.

Last month our dryer went to appliance heaven. I resisted the urge to buy the cheapest model I could find. So I went on Home Depot, Lowes and Sears websites and read the reviews of name brand dryers in my price range. I picked the one that had the best reviews in that price range. I didn’t get a no-name dryer and I didn’t get a “top of the line” one with 42 different heat settings (what is the difference between Fluff, Fluffier and Extra Fluffy?). The one we purchased has large drum capacity (can hold enough jeans to to start a Grease revival) and only 3 heat settings…High, Delicate and No Hear. But that meets our needs. We do 30-35 loads of wash a week and a lot of that goes into the dryer. Some gets hung on the clothesline during good weather, but not all. And on bad weather days the dryer is running a lot. All we need in a dryer is for it the Dry and Run Strong.

Whaaaat?

Advice to the Kids Regarding Working

Let’s face it. Unless you are a trust-fund baby or a Kardashian, most of us are going to have to work for an extended period of time. While it might be fun to have a large trust fund and not having to work, being a Kardashian is just gross and nasty. So for the rest of us that have to work. How do you go about it and not let it suck your soul dry?

Work has become a four-letter word. People love to complain about, yet for most of us, we will be working for half of our life (or longer). And those working years are our prime years.

Here is listicle of advice for my kids on surviving and thriving at work.

  1. Plan now or you will be working FOREVER. Work early – Work  often. Save early – Save often.
  2. Working forever is fine if it’s what you want. But wouldn’t you rather have the flexibility to work or not work?
  3. When you start a new job, bust your butt the first day at work. Make that good first impression on the boss and coworkers. This applies to a teen working at McDonalds as well as to an adult working in an office.
  4. Find one or more things you love to do. Things you would do for free every day for the rest of your life.
  5. Figure out how to make money doing those things and do them. Even if it’s not much money at first and you have to do them part time.
  6. If you don’t find a way to make money while you sleep, you will work until you die – Warren Bufffett
  7. Working for The Man is ok. Working for yourself is far superior.
  8. You don’t have to have a high salary to get wealthy. But it helps.
  9. Have MULTIPLE revenue streams. Examples: W2 job, consulting, rental income, eBay sales, cut grass, start a business, dividends, blogging, create YouTube content, Uber etc.
  10. Remember to have fun.