Where I’ve been since i left the church.

So, let me start by saying that interviewing is tough! I’m tired of interviews and after much thought and discernment if nothing pans out by the end of the week, i think I’m going to take a much needed break.

You know… New Year, new me? New job? We will see. I’ve turned down 3 jobs. Gone to like 9 interviews and now I’m here just waiting. After this Friday I’m done for. Not completely giving up but just taking my time. I mean…. I’m debt free! My family and i will still be okay and although we will be saving less, we still have our goals to be out in the road someday. Maybe my two year span might not be a reality with this break but I’m home, being a part of my son’s life and a great wife.

For now i seek the church again. I’m not gonna lie. I’ve felt distant let down, betrayed, but i must snap out of it. Like this Sunday’s reading which is my favorite; The son who returns to his Father….. I’m coming back strong Lord!

24 total hours of driving for 1 day to be with family.

So on Friday we left from our home in Fort Lauderdale, FL and headed north to Denver, NC to just spend one day with family. It was worth it!

We are now heading back home. Should be there late at night. Enough time to rest and start our weekly routine again!

We had a great time catching up, eating, laughing, and a full day of fun at the local carnival!

Making memories, eating lots of carnival food, great laughs and moments shared were the best part of our weekend!

Can’t wait to do it again!

Fighting for my church! The reason I left…

After so many years of really trying to “stay and fight” for the Catholic Community and the Church, the day finally came when quitting from my second Church job within the span of a year, wasn’t so much a hard decision as an acknowledgement of reality, morality and truth: I just couldn’t continue to work at an institution that I’ve loved my whole life, but that’s run by men who or what I like to call the “Career Catholics” and are interested in everything but the love of Christ in those who truly seek it.

I’ve been working for a Catholic Church for almost 9 years, two years I did it full time and for free. One year I did it with a 6 day old baby in hand (or in my desk drawer) to be able to return and “support” my pastor. Don’t get me wrong, I felt blessed to have my baby by my side, but it was not easy. It was hard as heck! For 4 years I worked BOTH a full-time 40 hour a week job and a part-time 20 plus hours a week job plus managed to volunteer 10 or more hours out of the week. All this for the church! And for the last year, not only did I have both of those jobs, but had a third night shift job at a retail store after hours when they closed so that I can accomplish our dreams of getting out of debt.

I don’t regret a single moment. I don’t regret a single day. Not to mention the times my son had gotten his epileptic seizures has been at the church, a church event, or prior to something big we were supposed to do at the church. And until this day you know what that tells me? That tells me that as for my husband, son and I we serve the Lord! We are so devoted that the devil puts barriers in place to stop us, to get us to go, but we stand tall!

Working for the Archdiocese of Miami has made me open my eyes to many things that I will save for another blog post. Working with many different priests has also made me open my eyes that they are just men with nothing special but a title and yet the moment they hold that piece of bread up during the Mass I know they stop being who they are and are that instrument that God intended them to be and I believe that at that moment that bread becomes Christ Himself!!!

For a while I asked myself, “What am I doing? Am I doing good work here or making a difference? Is God using me here? Or am I helping to just be the face for an institution that is ultimately unredeemable?” And that is why I’m leaving the Church. The workforce only! I’m 100% Catholic and will always be. I will fight with all my might to do what is right! I refuse to become another “Career Catholic” and although after you read this I’m in search of a job…. At least I’m not in search of my soul. My morals stand strong and my family and I will be blessed.

That is why more than ever we want to go on the road and live a life of service and preaching. Telling our story. There is beauty in simplicity and we don’t ask for luxurious things. We have become too spoiled over the years. We are already rich in love. Rich in Christ and we are descendents of Royalty! We can’t get any richer.

Tomorrow as I go into work (probably for what is my last day ever working for the Catholic Church) I will hold my head up high. I’m not gonna lie, tears will be shed. My everyday tasks will be missed, and to continue on this road of servitude.

What this has taught me is that I’m more Catholic then ever! That I’m proud of my choices. And I know that God will always provide! Our plans might be cut short or delayed but never stopped! As for this Administrative Assistant to the Pastor who dresses punk rock, wears dark leggings, skirts and boots. . . It’s time to shine woman! Don’t hold back! Continue to speak the truth! Defend your Church, even if it means going through difficult times. The Church, our precious and beloved Church, is under attack. And by those we least expect! But I refuse to give up and I will not run away; I will run into the building, my church, my community, giving my entire life, to build up the Church and to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I invite you to do the same, to be the change! Speak up brothers and sisters!

The beauty of decompressing

On Saturdays we tend to almost always do the same thing. We wake up whenever we want. I’m usually first, then it’s Frankie and last comes daddy. Like very last. Sometimes it can get noisy (courtesy of Frankie and I) 😉 We like to eat breakfast as a family so Frankie knows that if he is really hungry, he can grab a fresh fruit in the meantime. 80% of the time we go to our favorite Mexican place (one time for La Union).

For the most part we try to stay active, so we ride our bikes almost everywhere, we visit the park and have lunch at the local farmers market. Then we go to another park or go home to watch a family movie or play board games.

We usually like going to Sunday morning Mass unless we have some plans for Sunday doing it going somewhere we tend to them go to a Saturday evening Mass.

This weekend with Lent already have been started, we keep it simple yet fun but with a little more responsibility. We try to clean more often, pick up more often and today I started to post a few items we are selling!

Little by little we want to sell all we can and since we aren’t in a rush we can still be a little more picky about not giving away all are good and still it for what it still worth.

Here are a few pictures from earlier today.

And a little video teaching you to speak to the birds courtesy of Frankie! 🤭

A timeline has been set!

After a lot of consideration and praying, we have made a very drastic decision to sell all our belongings and save what we can. In the summer of 2021 we will be embarking in an adventure for at least a year. We want to leave it all behind. We are officially debt free and now we are working to save money for two years at least to hit the road full time. We will quit our jobs. Sell all of our belongings and just get up and go!

We will keep you up to date and see what we will be doing along the way!

Please consider making a donation for our cause in assisting us for gas!

https://www.gofundme.com/catholicfamilyontheroad&rcid=r01-155197397157-c74aa4151fff4dde&pc=ot_co_campmgmt_w

 

So I did it! I quit EVERYTHING!

New things are happening and it is for the best! I quit two of my part time jobs and my main full time job to take a church job doing something I love! It is a lot less pay, but have some flexibility and love the atmosphere. It might not seem like the best move for someone following the Dave Ramsey plan but it is the best move for our families happiness! Even Francisco quit his corporate job to work from home! Our son needs us and he is more important! We feel a lot more happy! More at peace! More time for family! No amount of money could ever replace that!

Living on Rice and Beans???

Over the last month I have become a Dave Ramsey fanatic. I urge you to search for his name on you tube. My friend who I meet with introduced me to his method of becoming debt free! I am in love with Mr. Ramsey so much that for the next 3-5 years my husband and I have decided to be poor! If you hear what Ramsey says, you will understand. But like Mr. Ramsey says, we will be living like no other people for the next couple of years to then live like no one else for the rest of our lives!!!He is a Christian man who not only has devoted his life to show and teach people to live without debt, but to spread the Word of God! He teaches us about integrity and financial wealth all in the same podcast that you can hear daily from 2pm-5pm Eastern time! It is live too!

I urge you to Google him, I t will completely change your life and/or at least the outlook of debt and budgeting. My husband and I have realized that we have been living not within our means and although we de-cluttered we had to look more in depth at the root of the problem. We have spent so much money over the last decade that it’s ridiculous!!! It makes me sad, for we have sinned, but it also makes us soooo MAD!!!! And let me tell you, being mad is a good thing! We are now attacking this problem with  gazelle intensity! We are being swift and we know who the enemy is!!! Like the Bible states in proverbs 22:7 The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender. (NIV)

Well my friends, we are sick of being slaves! We created this mess and we will take a choke hold of it! I will break it all down and I personally could care less what any friends reading this may think or what even some family members think, but I am putting ourselves out there to hold ourselves accountable! We owe a little over $70,000.00!!! YIKES! I won’t bore you with the exact numbers but just in student loans its about $40k, $18k for one of our cars and $6k for our other car, the rest is various credit cards. And guys…. that is not even counting our mortgage!!! The good news is that within 3-5 years we plan to have it ALL paid! And two years after that our house!!! And two years after the house our son’s college education and 6 months worth of our salary as an emergency fund!!! But it will take a lot of hard work, no going out (yet we still plan to have fun.. a lot of FREE fun), maybe extra jobs in our future and cutting a lot of expenses. I’m not saying live on rice and beans but damn close to it!!

So who is with me? Have any of you heard of Dave Ramsey?

It took getting rid of everything to see how much I truly have!

Over the last few weeks I have noticed such a huge change in me and my family. We are living with less but have gained so much! Our son Frankie is oblivious to it all since he is only 4, but he is such a sweet and caring boy that he seems to understand when we explain certain things to him and he is so adamant about doing things right to please us. Before all this, anything he wanted, any request, any double look he gave an object he got. For Christmas his budget has been unlimited for the last 4 years of his life. For his birthday he gets whatever he wants from us and we throw this HUGE party that people would think it’s his Bar Mitzvah! We invite close to 150 people and the kids! We have his birthday at a huge hall at our church with 2-3 bounce houses that fit cozy inside incase it rains since his birthday is in June. We have more food than we know what to do with and to top it all off, we ask the guest to bring a check to donate to our charity of choice that year. Not to mention that we hire people to entertain the kids and we give toys to almost every kids who attended the party. Overall, his birthday usually costs between $5000-$8000. Yes! Ridiculous and I see that now. Frankie now knows that he only gets new toys for his birthday (which will be budgeted to  $100 in gifts and a birthday party of 8-10 friends at our house) and on Christmas (this year the budget will be $150, plus family gifts). He is also allowed to buy his own gifts with his own money. We call it his commission and he can earn up to $4 per week. When he turns five the commission will increase to $5 and so on! We don’t pay our son an allowance for chores around the house. He has to do them regardless. He is a part of the family and therefore must work and pitch in with the family. He earns the commission for simply doing good in school, behaving and going the extra mile! He will know that with hard work and dedication great fruits will come his way.

So, besides giving up the spending that was out of control towards our son we have gained more time with him. We play with him, do outside activities, we talk, we teach him and he is even taking a sense of pride on the chores we give him. This not only pleases us but he himself has become a much happier kid! Our son holds his head up high every time we praise him! His shoulders roll back as he reminds you how good he did at something. He talks to us about his day as soon as daddy comes home from work and tells us who did what and what he did at school. He is even more thankful. He thanks me for making his breakfast, packing his lunch or snacks, and even thanks me for cleaning the house and having it so pretty! Every Sunday he also tells me how beautiful I look wearing this or that. Whether its my dress, a shirt, my hair bow or a simple bracelet. I have gained a loving boy who will eventually grow up to be a caring man who appreciates women, the work we put in and the meaning of hard work! He has gained a lifetime of happiness knowing that we love people and not things.

Another thing I have gained is better conversations with the hubby! At night we don’t watch TV anymore. If we do it is on a Friday night, but even that has become a lost art in our bedroom. Before it was turn on Netflix, let’s catch the Walking Dead, what is on E!, etc… Now we talk more about our day. He gets to know more about my work and vice versa. We talk about our projects, our plans, our budget. We do things together. At least he tries to help more with things around the house. It is taking him a while because he is very unorganized. He is making more of an effort to wake up earlier. He is writing to do lists, notes and reminders. I have gained so much more from my husband over the last month than in the last ten years of our married life so far! It is amazing!

I have a new found respect for myself. I feel like I have accomplished so much. Not only the things around my house, but in my personal view of myself. As you all know I have a huge self acceptance issue and I turn to food for many if not all of the things that go on and when I think I have a grasp of it, it turns out that I don’t! I have to keep reminding myself that I am worth it. I am worth more than that cake, more than those chips, you get the picture. If Jesus could pass the temptations of his fasting after the 40 days, how could I not pass by a moment of temptation? With living with less, I have been able to create (yet not mastered, but working on it) a plan for food. I have a budget and I must stick to it! It must be healthy and it must be things we all enjoy to eat. Food Proportions will come in handy a lot more when I start to tighten up this budget a bit more and although it is still a work in progress, it is a steering in the right direction!

I dare you my friends to do this with me! You will fee freeing! You will gain more than you would lose. I am seeing now that all those material things that made me so happy in reality didn’t. Only for a small moment they brought happiness which then turned o clutter and a way of clogging up my life. It took something so drastic to open up my eyes! I am thankful to God for allowing me to see beyond our material world. I lived a life of sin by being so materialistic and for portraying something I was not. Something that was taking away from others viewing the real me.

 

 

Update on de-cluttering my life!

I am finally finished! I have de-clutter, organized and formatted my home and my life. So many changes have been made. Big Decisions have been prayed about, talked about with my husband and a new plan has been set in place! The past week Of having everything organized and de-cluttered has been a God-sent! I’ve had more time to spend with Frankie, to read, to concentrate on simple tasks that I have been meaning to get around to at home. It really is more fulfilling to live with less!

I have however been struggling with my eating habits these last two weeks. I have been so occupied to getting the house to where I was happy that I have let myself go. I have been eating everything in sight and have gained weight in the process. Now that I have more of a flow of things I need to get right back on track!

Let me tell you that getting ready in the morning has become a breeze, and although I must admit that I have added a few key pieces of clothing to my wardrobe it has been to compliment the new look and color scheme of things. I have gotten rid of even more shoes! I know, what is wrong with me? I have realized that if something is not working then it must go!

I also finally got around to talking to my priest about my decision to leave my job. He was so kind an understanding about it. I have had second thoughts as I mentioned before because now I have signed up to getting out of debt the Dave Ramsey way and well, the extra money would have been nice but I can always apply at any other jobs and if they don’t make me happy or are bringing more stress, then I will let it go. I am not bound to anyone or anything besides my husband and child. That’s the way I see it.

What have you done lately to de-clutter your life, your home, your thoughts?