Bah Humbug….

As I wrote to my homeschool friends this morning I contimplated whether or not to make this post and share it with you guys as well…
Do I do it?  Do I share the bad news the same as I share the good news on this blog?
Will it just bring down the spirit of this happy place?
I try so hard to show my real life and who I really am on here so in all fairness sharing the bad days goes hand and hand with sharing the good days.  Right?

Where to start?
Have you ever just had one of those Monday’s where you just KNOW you should have never gotten out from under the covers?
Yesterday was a total lightening bolt for the Mccuiston clan.
Many of you know this year has been tough on us. As my income has gone down after having Lucas, the economy taking a hit and the advent of a million new photographers has come into play, we were already struggling.

I had gone back to school to start working on a a new career path…farming and sustainable agriculture (which by the way I have been LOVING!) trying everything I can to keep my end of the cash flow into the house but still be able to homeschool. Homeschooling the kids and staying home with Lucas are huge to us.  Not mention without a degree I wouldn’t make enough in a normal job to pay for the childcare etc…
We have never been that family that doesn’t need a second income, even if it is meager.
Hence why I always have a million things going.  I will do just about anything to stay with these kiddos and make this all work.

So yesterday I get the call from Daryl that totally makes a mamma’s stomach sink.
He was coming home….he has been laid off. Merry Christmas to us.
Thank the good Lord I have been having a decent Holiday portrait season and purchased the kids Christmas presents already.
That is something I am soooo thankful for.

We have been through layoffs before though. I know we will get through this but I will admit…I am tired.
I am normally this great cheerleader of the universe blah blah blah….but today? I am just tired of trying to keep it together.
I am tired of the struggle I suppose.  Daryl and I have to be two of the hardest working people I have ever met.
But that has been life for us since day one.  It’s our “normal”.
If you know our life story it is pretty amazing actually….if you don’t here is the cliff note version:
We met when Daryl was 13 and I was 15…at church camp of all places.  I was from Ohio and he was from Va.  This was before the advent of the internet, cell phones and Skpye.  It is a real life “love at first site” story.
It involves three years of not seeing each other but talking and writing each week and basic long distance relationship struggles.
I finally moved here a few days after I turned 19.  He was still in high school…it was scandalous.  I like to think his mother just knew though.  Anyone who knew us…”just knew” really.  We have this electricity to us that shows even when we aren’t trying.

So happy together…BUT that doesn’t mean it has been “easy”.
Actually the opposite.
I worked three jobs just to get him through college at one point…we married when he hit 21.  We knew one of us needed a college diploma for sure or life would be even tougher.
I agreed I would marry him when he was old enough to legally make a champaign toast at the very least…lol!
We had 4 pregnancy losses within the first three years of being married and 1 more in between Haley and Lucas.  Getting pregnant and staying pregnant was a decade long event for us.
I lost a huge chunk of my family within 18 months…mom, dad, all of my grandparents.
This is the third Christmas in 13 years that Daryl has been laid off.  The tech industry is not always a stable career path.
We have had illnesses, surgeries, cancer scares…you name it…we have probably been hit by it.
But somehow we remain…happy.  Our love seems to grow stronger with each and every struggle.
He is my soulmate and best friend for sure.
Something about weathering huge storms with your soulmate really only makes your relationship stronger if you can weather it.
There is comfort in knowing that we may live in a shack one day (hopefully not soon) but as long as we have each other and our family we WILL always find happiness…even on the crap days.

Right now I have no idea what our future is. I know there is some universal plan that I just don’t know yet.
Something better always comes along BUT  I know what the coming months are going to be like.
I am just trying to find the strength to fight this fight.
Ready for life to get “easy” but I realize that is probably never going to happen for us at this point.
Does life ever really get “easy” for anyone?  I don’t really think it does.
I keep reassuring the kids that we are going to “be alright!” but in the back of my mind I find myself thinking “am I lying to them?”.
We will keep on keeping on.

I need to add some positive things in here…
I posted to my homeschool friends this morning early and by noon my support system was in full gear.  I love these woman.
I really do.  I am not sure how any mother survives homeschooling without a core support group of folks?
I needed some cheering on and “you can do this”…sometimes you just need others believing in you…voicing that you will be “ok”.
By 4pm Daryl had several leads he was working off of our friends.  God bless ALL of you!
By the end of the day today he has figured out a contract with the current place to work for another month on a project.  Very thankful.  This should hold us or at least buy us some time to try and catch our breath and figure out the next step.
This has left me feeling….happy and blessed.

Figured I would ask you guys for some help if you don’t mind…
We are a “work ourselves to the bone” kindof crew.  Always have been.
If you hear of any job positions or contracts for web Usability Engineers, website design work or anything computer internet/programming/design related please feel free to forward it my way or give them Daryl’s name.
He is on LinkedIn, Monster etc.. the boy has mad skills, a great resume and fantastic references.

On my end of it…I will be doing mini photo sessions all December for any family that will have me for $300 . That includes the session fee and the full size image files!   I simply need as much work as I can get now more than ever.  I will also be offering a special wedding package deal if you or someone you know will be getting married this coming year.

I will also be accepting hugs and someone else taking over the cheerleader role for a few weeks…lol 🙂
I know you guys can help me with that for sure.
Thanks for listening to me ramble…
Heres to praying that God shows us his plan for our future sooner than later…


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Just a gal...making good food for her family.
Taking life one plate at a time❤︎

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