Saturday, March 27, 2010

A Shower of Blessings

Wow, it's been a long time since I last posted. In addition to buying a house (we close on the 13th), I had another major change in my life. I got a job... a different job actually, since I have a job right now. I started on Monday, working at a company that makes parts for the airplane companies and I enjoy what I do. I'm working in the purchasing department, entering information into two different computer programs. The other two ladies that I work with and my boss do the actual purchase orders but I enter the po's into the computer after we get the material, correcting numbers and making sure we got the right thing. It's very different from any other job that I've had, and I really love it. I have my own cubicle and I sit at my desk, working on my computer almost the whole time. I LOVE it. I don't have to deal with rude or angry costumers, people treat me with respect, and the company values me. This past week, I worked four hours each day, and next week, I'll have the same schedule. The week after that, I'll be going to six hour days and probably go to full-time eventually, though, I'd rather just work 6 hours a day. I don't want to work full-time, so 30 hours a week is great. I go in for 7:30, which has been an adjustment for me. Working at Dillons, I usually worked the afternoon or evening, many times until 11 or even midnight, so I'm used to sleeping in until 9 or so, but I actually like getting up earlier and getting done with work earlier in the day.
Last Tuesday, I put in my two week notice at Dillons. I told them my last day would be Sunday, the 4. Dillons wasn't so bad when that was my only job, but working my new job this past week made me realize how much I dislike working at Dillons. It's okay for a temporary job but, unless you have the temperament for it, it's hard to do for a long time. You have to answer to everyone... the managers, the supervisors, and the customers. Customers are allowed to treat you any way they want and you can't say a thing about it. I get hit on all the time by black guys, and some of them are pretty perverted (though, as soon as I mention something about "my husband" that usually stops them in their tracks - I love being married :)). The hours are crazy and the job is, actually, rather stressful. I like doing U-Scan because I don't have to talk to people as much, but when I check, I hate dealing with people that are crabby at me and I didn't do a thing. Every customer that comes through my line, I can't help thinking "I wonder if this person is gonna be rude to me". Or, if they don't say anything rude to me, I have to listen to them demean the sacker (I've heard some customers say some pretty cruel things to the sacker, just because it was a kid. I can guarantee, if it was a 40 year old woman doing the sacking, the customer wouldn't have said a word). And then there are some pretty stupid rules; for example, Kroger has a credit card (1-2-3 Rewards Mastercard) that they offer. Sometimes, an application will print on a customers receipt and we HAVE to tell them about the card. 95% of customers don't want to hear about it and some customers even get rude because they're tired of getting credit card offers. However, since a lot of checkers aren't offering them the card, a new rule was made by management that if we don't offer the customer the card, we'll get written up. Can you believe that?
Anyway, I tried not to be too negative about my job while I was working there, because I didn't want to start dreading going to work everyday, but now that I'm leaving and going to another job that's so much more enjoyable, I feel like I can vent a little. And I know that even though I really like my new job, I'll find things, as time goes by (hmm, that's a song...) that I dislike about it, but it'll still be way better than being a checker at Dillons.
It's funny how things work out... I probably wouldn't have kept my Dillons job after we moved into our new house, since it's not really worth driving that far for what I get paid, so I would've either had to transfer to a store closer to our house or find another job. And then this new job comes along... and it's 6 minutes from our new house. We're getting a new house that we both love, I have a new job that I enjoy and that pays better and is a lot better hours (after I go to 6 hours, it'll be 7:30 to 2 every day, so I'll have plenty of time in the afternoon to do things at home, clean, make supper, go shopping etc.) - and I can't help but wonder what's going to go wrong to screw it all up. Everything is too perfect and you know the old saying "if it seems too good to be true, it probably is". However, I know that one of the ways that the devil gets to Christians is to make them think that way. God blesses us and instead of us enjoying the blessings like we should, the devil comes along and makes us doubt the blessings and steals our joy. So, I'm determined to enjoy the blessings that God is showering on us now and not worry about things that probably won't happen anyway. Crappy things will happen in the future, because that's life and sometimes crappy things happen. But the way to deal with the crappy times is to enjoy the blessings when you get them and realize that, in the crappy times, blessings are just around the corner.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

A House?!

A few weeks ago, I put a status on my facebook: "my life is boring right now...." Since then, my life has gotten sooo busy and so exciting. Daniel and I are looking for a house. Even as I type it, I still find it hard to believe. If someone had told me two weeks ago that we'd be seriously considering buying a house, I would have laughed at them. How did this all come about? Well, a week and a half or two weeks ago, I was online at our bank's website and, just for the heck of it, I decided to calculate what our monthly mortgage payment would be if we bought a house. To my surprise and shock, the number that I came up with was only about $30 more than what we're paying for rent right now. And that's how it all started. I thought about that number constantly, thinking how ridiculous it was for us to be paying rent each month when we could be investing that money in a house instead. The only problem was, we don't have enough money saved for a down payment. I thought about every scenario possible to get money for a down payment but nothing came to me. And then I remembered something that I heard my parents talking about with some friends of ours who are trying to buy a house. The government is offering an incentive to first-time homebuyers - a tax credit of 10% of the purchase price with a maximum of $8,000. That, of course, made the prospect of owning a home even better. But we still didn't have money for a down payment. And the incentive that the government is offering is good until April 30, 2010, with a 60-day extension to June 30 if a contract is entered into before April 30. So what to do?
And then it hit me. We could use the tax credit for our down payment! We'd have to get a short-term loan of $8,000, use that for the down payment and closing costs and then pay off that loan when we get the credit from the government. I talked to my parents about it and they said we could just borrow the money from them, which is even better since most banks don't like it if you're borrowing any of the down payment. So, now that we've found a way to actually get the money for a down payment and our bank has pre-qualified us for a loan, we just need to find a house.
A week or so ago, during the time that I was pondering how to get money for the down payment, I was driving home from somewhere (don't even remember where) and I was looking at the houses along Kellogg. About a mile from the exit that I take, there's a sound barrier wall along the highway and just on the other side, you can see the second story of houses in that neighborhood. I'd noticed those houses before (many of them were brick and looked pretty nice) so I decided to go check out the neighborhood. I exited, took a couple rights, and ended up among the houses that I had seen. And lo and behold, there on the corner was a for sale sign (realty sign actually) for a house, pointing farther down that street. I turned right again and drove down to the house with the realty sign in the front yard and saw an absolutely beautiful house. I immediately knew that we had to try to buy that house. Since then, reality has set in and I realize that there's a good chance we may not get that house but Daniel and I went to see it on Monday night and he really likes it too. It has new hard wood floors inside, new roofing (Daniel was excited about that), a nice backyard, a garage, a basement, a good-sized kitchen, etc. and it's in a pretty nice neighborhood. This Saturday, we're going to see some houses that are actually outside the city of Wichita, but I think that, if we don't like any of those, we're gonna try for that first house.
Anyway, if you follow me on facebook, you'll see each step as we move forward, but I'll try to keep my blog up-to-date on what we're doing too. I'm so excited!