Suzi Beech and Family

This blog is about my family and my trials and tribulations as a work-from-home mom of twins.

Nothing Says “Summer’s Here” Like the Ice Cream Truck! June 10, 2009

Filed under: Personal Stuff — Suzi Beech @ 8:49 am
Tags: , , , , , , , ,
1st ice cream truck visit of 2009

1st ice cream truck visit of 2009

That’s right…school’s not quite out here in our neighborhood, but already that familiar music came drifting down the street yesterday afternoon.  I find it very  interesting that kids can hear the ice cream truck music trinkling from blocks away, but not hear me when I’m standing right next to them (shouting their name, repeatedly…).  Anyway, I wanted to say hello to you, welcome to summer, welcome to ice cream trucks, days of swimming and watermelon, the beginning of new seasons and new possibilities. Enjoy your day!

Advertisements
 

The final week of school…my kids are almost done with 2nd grade! June 9, 2009

My monkeys at Field Day

My monkeys at Field Day

My twins are in their final week of 2nd grade. I know it’s true but I’m having a hard time believing it. I told Ruby at least three times yesterday, “Today is your last Monday of second grade, ever!” She was totally unimpressed and reminded me I’d already told her that. Well, forgive me for being a sentimental Mommy. Each year seems to be going by faster than the last!

I spent this morning at their school as a volunteer for “Field Day.” Field Day is where their whole school (Kindergarten through 2nd grades in the morning and 3rd through 5th grades in the afternoon) spend time outside, playing games and running around. It’s school-wide controlled chaos.

I was stationed at the obstacle course. I had two 5th-grade girls running the show, I was only there in a supervisory role. It was pretty incredible to witness the differences in all the grades. The little kindergarten students tripped over the hurdles, knocked down the cones, fell through the hula-hoops and laughed and laughed. They were all about having fun and didn’t take the whole thing very seriously.

I could tell the 1st graders were beginning to become a little self-conscious, but they were still willing to cheer-on their teammates in loud voices. When one of them would knock over a hurdle, they’d try to stop and “fix” it or right a fallen cone. They were more about doing things “right” than quickly.

Ruby & Miss Chamberlain

Ruby & Miss Chamberlain

The 2nd graders were having fun, but were definitely more self-conscious and a lot more competitive. The boys were all about making the best time, even if it meant they skipped obstacles or plowed right through them and they’d call for their time before they reached the finish line. The girls were very careful to clear each hurdle, zig and zag properly through each cone and cross the finish line, whether they were going fast or not. They were all about completing each task “properly.”

The 5th grade girls were excellent coaches and I really got to hang back and drink my coffee (lovingly supplied by the PTO…thank you!!) and cheer for all my little friends.

There was 45 minutes between completing all the Field Day activities and going back outside for a school-wide picnic lunch. I rushed home, packed myself a lunch (the two cereal bars and sleeve of Ritz I’d thrown in my backpack before leaving the house at 7:45 didn’t seem very appealing, after all!) and drove back to school in time to set-up our picnic blanket before the kids swarmed out.

Gus at Field Day 09

Gus at Field Day 09

It was a glorious, June afternoon by Oregon standards. Warm, but not hot, breezy not windy, with the temperature in the low to mid-70s. I got both my kids and a bunch of their friends to sit on my blanket with me to eat our lunches. I don’t know how many more years they’ll want to sit with “Mom” but I sure am glad they do now! After lunch and a few pictures, they were ushered back into class and I returned home…back to work.

I am sad my babies are growing up so fast. Three more days of 2nd grade, they’ll turn 8 next month, then a couple of months until the start of 3rd grade! Where has the time gone?

I am so very happy that I’ve changed my life so that I can earn a living while working from home around my kids’ schedules. I missed so many of their events and activities when I was working as a restaurant manager. If only I’d known then what I know now about network marketing, I would’ve saved myself a lot of stress and heartache. In either case, I am grateful for what I have now and am happy to lead the life I do!

 

I missed working over the weekend! June 1, 2009

View over the pond

View over the pond

I went camping with my daughter’s Girl Scout troop last weekend. It was a ton of fun, but exhausting. Imagine wrangling 12, 2nd grade girls into doing anything, let alone doing things like cleaning a campsite, and you’ll have a good idea of what I’m talking about. I think it was a great experience, not just for the girls, but for myself, my troop co-leader and the mom that came with us. I felt that I was able to bond with the adults and the girls more than I have in the past.

We worked on several great projects including creating bird feeders out of pine cones and solar ovens out of pizza boxes.

Solar Ovens cooking s'mores

Solar Ovens cooking s'mores

I learned to make something called “gimp” (aka lanyard, aka boondoggle) which are neat woven things made out of plastic lace. My co-leader is a master. I only aspire to become as good at it as she is, but I’m a beginner and am pleased that I was able to figure it out at all! (Anyone needing a 3″ long gimp key chain, you just let me know! I’ve made quite a few already!!)

Gimp keychains

Gimp keychains & link to instructions

Ruby practicing gimp

Ruby practicing gimp

The cell phone reception at camp was spotty, at best. Every once in a while, I would walk into an area with good reception and my phone would start downloading all my various messages. Bleep, bleep, bleep! The girls all thought it was very funny that my phone would randomly start chirping. The other two adults probably thought it was annoying! To me, it was an awesome reminder that work was being done, even though I was off camping. I don’t think I have ever had a job that continued to produce for me even when I wasn’t actively working on it. It is a very liberating feeling, let me tell you! I have gone from slaving away at a restaurant management job to working from home at a job that’s fun AND truly does continue working even when I’m not!
I know there are a lot of people who are skeptical about network marketing, but I am a believer. I know that what I am involved in is legitimate and rewarding, both personally (I meet great, supportive people and become friends with them!), and financially. Even though I was having a terrific time camping, I missed work! That’s a first for me! I hope the rest of you out there are as satisfied with what you’re doing as I am. I am truly lucky!

 

The Top 5 Things I’m Thankful for this Memorial Day Weekend May 23, 2009

Kicking the weekend off with a splash!

Kicking the weekend off with a splash!

1.  First and foremost, I’m thankful that I overcame years of infertility and was given the gift of my children.  It was a long, difficult battle, but we took it on and were victorious.

2.  I am thankful for my husband, who stands by my decisions and remains supportive and encouraging, in good times and bad times.

3.  I am thankful for friends who inspire me to be better.  People who offer ideas and opportunities I wouldn’t have found on my own.

4.  I am thankful for having the opportunity to take chances in life.  Things might not have always worked out as planned, but nothing ventured, nothing gained.

5.  I am thankful for living in this era.  It is wonderful to be able to connect on a global level  with so many people with so many differing viewpoints and strategies.

I am also thankful that you are here reading this.  I hope we can connect in the future to share our joys and sorrows, successes and failures. I hope you have a wonderful and safe holiday weekend!

 

How to Find a Legitimate Online Business May 19, 2009

Award of Excellence Working from home is more popular than ever. The advent of the internet and modern computer technology has made working from home easier and more economical than in any other time. If you are considering becoming a work-from-home employee or starting your own business from home, there are a few steps you need to take to get started.

Search online. Start with a search engine such as Google or Yahoo. Type in the kind of work you’d be interested in or are qualified for, such as sales, data entry, or marketing, to name just a few possibilities. Make sure to include “work from home” or “home-based business” in your search. Try to make your search as specific as possible using keywords that pertain to your experience or education such as “work-from-home administrative assistant” or “work-from-home tax advisor.”

Ask around. Your friends might have some good leads or words of caution for you. Someone you know might have just started an online business they’re really excited about or they may caution you against one you’re already considering. Remember to take everything they say with a grain of salt. You’re looking for the right business for you, which doesn’t always mean it would be the right business for them. Subscribe to online forums centered on the kind of work you would be doing. You can gain valuable insight into companies by listening to what those involved in them are saying.

Check with the Better Business Bureau. Make sure you are diligent in researching any companies you’re considering getting involved with. The BBB is a great place to start. You can type in the company name and see how many or if any complaints have been filed against them. In addition, you can see if the complaint was resolved or if there are many outstanding complaints.

Use your best judgement when moving forward. Search for a variety of companies and jobs. Talk with others involved or previously involved in areas you’re considering. Ask questions online or, if provided, call the company directly. Use the internet to your advantage and explore many potential companies and jobs before making a decision.

 

Why Does Everything Take So Long aka What Did I Really do Today? May 15, 2009

Filed under: Personal Stuff,Working from home — Suzi Beech @ 8:53 pm
Tags: , , , , ,

Maybe it’s just me, but time sure does seem to fly by.  Each and every day I sit down with my list of things I would like to accomplish.  Each and every day I start out accomplishing a little bit of something and then:  the phone rings; the laundry needs folding; the litter boxes needs cleaning; the dog needs walking; the kids need to be picked up from school;  and on and on.  I have my schedule, I have my list of things to do, but time goes so quickly!  Am I trying to do too much?  Am I not managing my time effectively?

Then again, why would something like creating and posting an ad take precedence over spending time with my kids on the playground on a beautiful afternoon?  Why should I sacrifice making a delicious dinner for one more article written.  Isn’t one of the greatest bonuses and joys of being ones own boss the flexibility of schedule and prioritizing ones tasks?  Instead of beating myself up for the things I didn’t cross of my “to do” list  today, I’m going to create a list of what I did do.  Here goes, in no particular order:

1.  I checked and replied to emails

2.  I checked all my posts, articles, listings, and leads and made the appropriate phone calls and follow-ups

3.  I talked to my mom on the phone, like I do almost every day

4.  I got my kids fed, dressed and off to school

5.  I picked-up the kids from school and took them, with friends, to the playground

6.  My daughter, dog  and I walked to the store, went shopping for a birthday party and visited the library

7.  I put away two full baskets of folded laundry

8.  I cleaned the litter boxes and took out the trash

9.  I got a wounded bird away from the cat using a broom and dustpan

10.  I wrote two articles, chatted with friends and mentors on Skype and listened to several training seminars

11.  I picked up the poor dead bird from the yard and put him in his final resting place

12.  I made a delicious dinner where all the food groups were represented

13.  I watched a family favorite television show with the husband and kids

14.  I am now posting to my blog while my husband and kids play basketball in the front yard

15.  I will read to the kids before they go to bed

16.  I read and re-read my marketing plan, guidelines and training modules

17.  After putting the kids to bed, I will check email, articles and forums, post where appropriate, follow-up where needed and chat with friends on Skype, Facebook and Twitter.

18.  Eventually, I will go to bed and read (currently “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”) before falling asleep

19.  In the morning, I will wake up and do it all again, only with slight variations for weekend activities:  acting class instead of school; birthday party instead of playground; four meals instead of three.

Looking at my list, it appears I actually did accomplish something today.  I worked at my business and I spent quality time with my family.  Some days are more laden with work and some with family.  The beauty of it all is that it’s a balance, my balance, and it works for me, my family and those we love.  That’s the point, right?

 

Didgeridoos made me laugh today! May 14, 2009

Filed under: Personal Stuff,Working from home — Suzi Beech @ 12:49 pm
Tags: ,

Every Thursday I volunteer as a reading group leader in my son’s  class at school.  I love working with the kids and listening to how their reading skills have improved as the year has progressed.

Today at school, in conjunction with the 2nd graders’ Social Studies unit on Australia, a special guest visited their classrooms.  He was a man who has spent time in Australia and is quite accomplished at playing the didgeridoo.  There I was, with my little group of five students, trying to read a funny Junie B. Jones story over the sound of a didgeridoo.  Not just his didgeridoo, either.  Every 2nd grader made one of their own this week, too.  What a ruckus!

Needless to say, my group found it very difficult to concentrate on their reading!  It was very funny.  I can hardly wait for my two 2nd graders to bring their didgeridoos home.  Boy are the cats and dog going to be in for a surprise!