Wednesday, February 16, 2011


Hi everyone,
As many of you know I'm "in between" jobs. I was layed off from my job the week after Christmas. It wasn't a total surprise, since my job is seasonal. Last week, I received a letter from the local employment office. I had to come in for about 2 -3 hours, update my resume and math/reading skills test scores.
THIS IS JUST A RANDOM PHOTO FROM JANUARY 1ST. I DIDN'T HAVE ANY PHOTOS RELATED TO MONEY OR UNEMPLOYMENT. SO I FIGURED THIS WOULD BE BETTER THAN NOTHING. :) :) :) I was really upset about having to go downtown. Especially since I had done this class last year. However, this year it changed. It actually turned out to be a pleasant experience. Last year I had to sit in a boring classroom for three hours. I felt like sleeping and it was, in my opinion, a bit of a waste of time. However, this year, I was able to sit at the computer and do the work myself WITHOUT having to listen to someone drone on and on. Then when I was finished with updating my resume and completing the math/reading tests, I spoke with an employment counselor.
I know quite a few excellent resources for job searches here in Oregon. Many of them have links to companion sites in other states. Let me know if you want some links to those sites. In any case,  in Oregon, you are REQUIRED to be registered with "iMatch" skills, in order to receive unemployment benefits.  Click here to visit the "Working in Oregon" website - the official site for unemployment and looking for jobs. When you look on the right sidebar, there's a link for "iMatch skills". It takes a long time, intiially, because you do basically have to upload a resume on their site. however, once it's on there, it's very easy to update. It is just one tool for job searches.
Another site I use is from one of Oregon's region employment offices. It's fantastic and has links to all sorts of various job search sites. There's links to what the main careers are in the state, what future projections are etc. Plus there are free on-line tutorials to help you build up your skills. It's fantastic, because they really provide a large number of resources. You do need to take the initiative and use those free services. Your tax dollars go to pay for use it, since it's free :) :) Oh, here's another website that is awesome for job searches. My father actually told me about this one. I've applied for a couple of jobs this way. It's called LinkUp. Click here to visit their site. It is a very basic job search engine. When I visit this site, I type in the city,state where I"m looking for work and it brings up a list of jobs.

In any case, this will be my first post on finances etc. I guess you can call it that :) :) It's not a fun place to be. However, I am learning a lot and through this time have been  learning to really make my money stretch really far. 

Next Wednesday I'll share about how well I was doing financially, got messed up with credit cards, and how I'm slowly getting my financial house and my peace of mind back :) :) I didn't use my first credit card until I was 27 years old. Up to that point, I paid cash for everything. Within the space of a year, through very unwise decisions, I ended up owing money. I have paid it all off...but it took me four years to do it.  I do have some medical bills that I'm still paying on...but no more credit cards for me. I literally use cash or my debit card.  So for me personally, in addition to looking for a new job, I am PASSIONATE about getting out of debt. This is my personal conviction about what I feel is right for me. I am NOT speaking for anyone else. Fiduciary wisdom/finances are so personal...but I really want to encourage you that there is hope, no matter what situation you find yourself in. Plus, I also hope that as I share my story, I can keep someone from making the same mistakes that I did : :) :) 

Pray that God will give me wisdom.  I am a bit nervous, but at the same time, I feel it's a necessary step. Plus it will keep me accountable, too. Anyways, I'll try and limit my version of money talk to Wednesdays. 

Okay, that's the news from Oregon today. Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :) :)


A Gypsy Angel/Stamperbee said...

Good Luck with your job search. Hope all is well in Oregon. Hugs, Kim

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

Hi Kim,
Everything is good. It's just a "dry season" in life right now. However, it's also full of opportunity. So I'm definitely keeping positive :) :) How is your StamperBee site doing? I LOVE the products you share...and I hope that it's successful :) :) Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

Anonymous said...

Being debt-free is a great thing to get passionate about! It brings such a feeling of freedom when you get there--like a burden lifting from your shoulders!
I know you can do this -- because it is your heart's desire and because I believe it is God's will for His children to live that way.
Blessings on your path,

Sue said...

Heather you are such an encouragement to me, I love the fact that you have learned so much about financial freedom, so needed now. I know that God has got the perfect job for you, you are doing your part, and He will do His.
you are very gifted with your hands, I love the socks. and those earrings!!
Blessings and hugs, to you today.

Jodie said...

Hey Heather! I'm kind of new here, but I thought I'd comment anyways! Like you, I never had credit cards in the past. I'm 24 now and thinking about purchasing my first home within the next year or two, if I'm able to save what I anticipate. I was told that since I haven't had a credit card ever, I have no credit rating and banks will be hesitant (or unwilling) to give me a I got one. I've managed to stay completely debt-free throughout the past year with my card, but the temptation is SO huge, knowing it's there and I can buy anything I want! My best advice is to leave it at home when you go shopping. I carry my debit card with me, but my credit card stays home. I try to buy something small-ish with it once a month to keep my rating up, and pay it off right's worked really well!

Good luck with the job hunt, it can be so difficult!!

Jodie :-)

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

Oh, thanks for your sweet comments. I was so worried I would upset people. i don't want to..and everyone really must decide for themselves how to handle money. This is just what works for me right now :) :)

@Aimee - Yes, for me being debt-free is the path I'm on. I'm not there yet, because I still have quite a bit in student loans..but I"m keeping my eyes on my goal and not straying. That's for sure. Right now, I'm just treading water until I find another job, but I'm watching my spending :) :)

@Sue - Thank you :) :) I've unfortunately learned many of those lessons the hard way...but I've come out better on the other end. So one of the things is to share my story, so I can encourage least try to :) :)

@Jodie - Thanks for your sweet comment. how did you find me? I always love to know how people find my blog :) :) I have ZERO credit cards..I closed down all my credit cards a few years ago..and now it's strictly debit card or cash :) :) Please feel free to visit my blog anytime ) :) :) :)

Love and hugs to all of you :) :) You really bring smiles to my day :) :)

Jill said...

Praying for you Heather!

I have started today my series on saving money if you'd like to check them out, you helped encourage me to post about it. I have lots more planned :-)

I love the first picture in this post, so beautiful!!!

Have a lovely day!


Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

@Jill - squeals of delight over your post today :) :) :) I've already left two comments on your blog :) :) In fact, I love your tips. Many I'm already familiar with. I'll make sure and share a link on my blog when I do my next money post :) :)

oh, when my father or I purchase gas for the car, we always purchase it when it's cold outside...either early morning or late, late evening. It's funny, but hear me out on thsi...gas expands in heat...and you don't get as much for your money. So you get more for your money when you fill up the gas tank when it's cold outside. the gas doesn't expand and evaporate as quickly.

Oh, that and making sure one maintains proper air pressure in the car tires ;) :)

Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

Coralie Cederna Johnson said...

Keep up the GREAT work, sweet Heather! You'll achieve all your goals!
Big Hugs,

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

Hi Coralie :) :)
Thanks :) :) I'm trying...:) :)

Love and hugs from Oregon,
Heather :) :)

Annesphamily said...

I just love listening to you Heather. You are another wonderful friend here always so solid and so sweet. I know credit cards can be a blesisngs or a curse. We currently have five we are paying off. We need a new dryer, it is a challenge but God is always good. No matter what. Love knowing you and pray for your perfect job to pop up soon. Love and Hugs and thanks for the wonderful info Anne

Cindy Adkins said...

Hi Heather,
I didn't realize that your job stopped after, I am praying that the job search goes well!! Much luck with that. And "yay" for not using credit's so much better not to--I totally agree!!!

Sheila said...

Good luck with your job search. Doesn't it feel good to get rid of credit card debt? It took us a while to get to the "no debt" mindset but I'm so glad we did. Love the earrings--wish I could still wear earrings. You and your father are in our prayers. Take care.

Rebecca said...

Somehow I missed it that your job ended after Christmas. I'm sorry! I admire your persistence and diligence in pursuing job possibilities. I KNOW there is a great shortage. But we have a GREAT job! I'm sure the financial lessons you've learned and ARE LEARNING will be a huge encouragement to many people.

The earrings are really beautiful! I like the way you "showed them" hung over the side of your beautiful tea cup.

Nancy Y said...

Those earrings are Beautiful! I read your gas tip in the comments - I had absolutely no idea that the temperature made a difference! We have 5 drivers in our home - we are definitely going to put that tip to good use! Thank you so much!
Good Luck with your job searching!
Have A Happy Weekend!
Nancy xx :D

Camille said...

I'm sure your experience and story will be an encouragement to many. What a blessing that you are seeking to live completely debt free...good for you! How easy it is with a credit card to get carried away. *Free* money just waiting to be spent! Not really. :) My Dad taught me to treat it like cash and pay it off in full every single month so as not to get into trouble. That advice has held me in good stead for over 20 years. If it is a temptation to spend beyond the budget, then it is best to just pay cash. What a blessing you are treating it like that.

Many blessings to you!

Carmen said...

I am looking forward to reading your post. I thought it was intersting that you have to enroll in a class for unemployment in Oregon. In my home state they do not have that but after enrolling you can wait up to 6 months to be approved for it.

The socks look extremely comfortable. And the earings are adorable too.

Thanks for letting me peak in.

Mercy said...

Goodluck in your job search. Also you have a beautiful blog.

Cindy Adkins said...

Hi Heather,
If you get a chance, could you visit my magazine blog? I have a surprise for you! Also, could you email me your street address?

Parsley said...

Good luck Heather. I know God will help guide you.

Kymberly said...

Dear Heather,
Here's the rest of my story!

Just as we were at our worst point--he got a call from Europe and the people at Kemit decided to hire him to help manage their plant in England for one year and then to return to the United States to work at the Plant in S.C.!

God willing, He will leave for England on March the 2nd and will be able to come home every 3 months! Yes, it will be hard to be away from him and I will be here alone with four children to take care of but I am going to hire several people to help---something I haven't been able to do before but am able to do now! I am also going to travel back with him when he comes home in June to visit England and all of the other places I have dreamed about seeing!

So I am here to testify that God is Great and even though the road seems endless and all is lost--He is there to support us and give us what we require from him--he does wish for us a "life of abundance"!

Now one huge problem we faced was credit card debt and now that he has been hired for this new job, we took the money we had left over from his Severence pay that we thought we were going to have to live on for the next year and paid off everything!

I had created most of the credit card debt over the years and felt overwhlemed with guilt from it, especially when he lost his job-- so don't feel bad--it does happen to the best of us but not impossible to pay off---we had most of it paid off before this happened! It's hard to tighten the belt and do without but it's such a blessing when the day comes that everything is paid off through hard work and committment!

So there is hope and believe me --just when you think all is lost and you can't take another day of trying but only to fail--
God shows the way out through His grace and love for us! I thought I had lost all hope-- but once again God knew exactly what had to take place before we could go forward in our lives!

Keep on inspiring others with the good work you're accomplishing on your Wednesday posts! You will lighten the hearts of so many and relieve them of their worries and doubts just by giving them the reasons to believe again that there is a way out of any problem if they'll just stay the course!

God bless you !
Big Hugs, Kym

Lisa Z said...

Hi! This is my first visit to your blog, after seeing you comment on some other blogs I read. I appreciate people who talk about finances openly. It is so rarely done and there exists in our culture still so much shame and fear around money issues. I know, we've lived with it too. I try to keep Jesus's words in mind "the truth will set you free" even in matters of money I believe this is the case. Your story will encourage others and bring a sense of hope to them, I bet. My husband and I are attending Financial Peace University right now and it is going to help us so much to have a plan and stick to it. I encourage anyone with financial issues, or any debt al all, to look into FPU and Dave Ramsey.

Mary said...

Those are beautiful socks, Heather. Good job on them! Pretty scenery, too. Thanks for the sweet comments on my blog. Hugz, Mary

Donna said...

Good luck with you job search. I am sure God has a plan for you! My husband wss without a job for several years off and on.
I know what it is like to wonder where the next house payment was coming from or to pay health insurance when it had lapsed.
We survived it (this was when our girls were little) and we were much younger. It made us stronger people and faith and prayer is what got us through the difficult years.
God Bless you!

Rebecca said...

I came back this morning to see what's new with you - and see I've commented already. BUT in my comment I said, "we have a great JOB."

I meant "we have a great GOD!"

I STILL mean we have a great GOD. He is mighty to save. Worthy of all our trust. Worthy of all our praise.

(I'll need to proofread my comments a bit better!)