Today I'm linking up with Momfessionals for Show and Tell Tuesday! The topic today is about our first jobs but since I've had so few "legit" jobs I figured I'd just cover them all in one post ;)
My first clock-in job was when I was 17. It was the summer between my junior and senior year and I got a job at The Buckle at The Mall of Georgia. I remember telling them I would not work any weekends which is pretty hilarious seeing as it was a commission type job. We were told to really, really push these mega expensive jeans (Lucky Brand) that I just couldn't bring myself to tell people to buy? Instead I always steered people towards the clearance racks. I did invest in some of the Lucky Jeans and omg they were the lowest cut jeans ever. Like beyond super low cut. Like even lower than these. Which I mean can I just say I'm soooo thankful that trend isn't coming back around yet?
Needless to say, I didn't make a whole lot of profit. And since we had to wear their clothes to work and only got a 40% discount, I ended up spending a good bit of what I made at the store. I knew then that I just wasn't a person motivated by the dollar. I know I was given a LOT of financial support (you can say I was spoiled just don't say I was rotten!) so that's probably part of why I wasn't grinding for that dough but even now I'm just not motivated that way. Like with blogging for example I could do a sponsored post and make like $150 for that post or I could get a free random product valued at $70 and I always choose the free product. Getting something for free is more motivating to me than having the money in my hand even if the money is a higher dollar value than the product! Zach thinks it's hilarious how pumped I will get when someone wants to give me something for free to review bahaha.
I quit my job at Buckle before school started back and didn't work again until the summer after I graduated. I did get hired at a Dippin' Dots cart but they didn't hire my boyfriend (our plan was to work together) nor did they let you eat ice cream for free so I quit immediately! My childhood best friend was lifeguarding at a super nice neighborhood where we lived and I ended up getting a job at the golf course there as a "golf shop coordinator." The gig was at TPC Sugarloaf. I knew NOTHING about golf. I had no clue that this was a beautiful course or that I should have reeeeeallllly taken the guys up on the free golf lessons they offered me out there. Oops.
I also was very unaware of the amount of professional athletes who lived in the neighborhood or would come out to play golf. We had a policy about not asking for autographs and that was a non-issue for me because famous people would come in and I didn't know who they were. I remember everyone getting all excited about John Ellway and I was like "who?!" Oh how my sports loving husband gives me a hard time about that now!
My two favorites that were athletes who lived in the neighborhood were Rodney Harrison and the goal tender for the hockey team in Atlanta (the Thrashers...Byron Dafoe?). Both were very nice guys and I now claim to be a Patriots fan just because I liked Rodney so much for that short time I got to see him (another thing that drives Zach crazy!).
The job was REALLY fun. I enjoyed it a lot as it was really chill. I got to interact with members all day and most were super nice. I also liked organizing all the merchandise and making tee times for people. I was single that summer and briefly dated one of the bag boys which made for good teasing from my fellow golf shop gang.
I really had very few complaints or issues about my time there, although being an 18 year old girl around older guys all day did have it's disadvantages. I laugh now that I thought the 30 year old guy who kept asking me out was sooooo ollllld and soooo creepy (creepy probably still fits b/c now that I AM 30 I cannot imagine my husband hitting on an 18 year old??! ICK). His little crush became a work issue because he was in charge of scheduling and I didn't want to work alone with him but yet kept getting scheduled alone with him. Double ick. That resulted in me calling in sick to avoid it which then lead to my last day not going so wonderfully. The golf pro had no clue of the issues going on (hindsight I probably should have said something) and instead blasted me out for calling in sick so many times. He let me know he could not give me a recommendation for my next job! I mean really dude?! Even though I had a great experience there overall, I left pretty unhappy about the whole thing because I felt like I'd been treated poorly simply b/c I didn't want to date a guy 12 years older than me!
Can you guess which one is the icky one? Clue: Not the one you are probably assuming based on the fact that the middle dudes hands are so close to my butt haha
During my freshman year in college I did some babysitting but then got so involved with Zach that I was never in town and spent my time volunteering to do college campus tours and such where I didn't get paid for it. Once I moved to Valdosta that summer Mrs. Charlotte helped me find a job at a dry cleaners. It was pretty sucky but it did give me a good taste of what some of Valdosta people are like. Hello snobbyyyy. I ended up looking for another job and my boss found out about it and asked me instead to go work at another one of his businesses.
I still don't quite understand what my job was about there. He gave me my own office space and I got to come and go as I pleased and was paid just based on when I was there. While there I would call people and try to sell them printers over the phone. I had NO sales experience or printer knowledge at all. He also had me kinda create my own computer program system to track all of these leads I was calling. VERY random. I never made a single sale but did form some close bonds with some of the guys who worked there. One I really felt that "father figure" vibe with and love to run into him around town!
I eventually phased out of that job. I never officially quit (I mean did I have some bad work ethic or whhhhhat), I just quit going in. Instead I started working for Mr. Rusty. Doing essentially the same thing as I did for the printer guy. I helped around the office and I made direct insurance sales calls. I got my insurance license (and still have it...and passed the test the first time which is an accomplishment b/c that junk ain't easy) and did actually sell some policies! I also went and sold Aflac at some accounts and Zach and I spent an entire summer together cold calling and trying to open accounts. We laugh about that because we cold called the whole summer and NEVER opened a SINGLE account. I don't even think we ever got a meeting? We also fought so bad we almost broke up and we both agreed we aren't meant to work together. We also even made the "Rant and Rave" section of the paper (hint: we weren't featured in the rave portion).
Sometime during my early Valdosta days Zach and I were at the Country Club pool and started playing with two kids. We both just have always liked kids (not so much little babies, but like kid kids) and we INSTANTLY hit it off with these children. Their mom ended up needing a babysitter and just like that my favorite job of all time started!
Madeline and Candler became my world. I loved (and still love) those children so much. I picked them up from school every day and stayed with them until their mom got home. Zach and I would also babysit them as needed on weekends and any other times. Heck we even went on vacation with them. Through them I met other families and also babysat for them. I started cleaning houses for some of them and even wrapped some of their Christmas presents. I was more passionate about that babysitting job than I'd ever been about any job before and it was then that I realized how passionate I was about being home with my kids.
I always knew I wanted to be a stay at home mom but my time with Madeline and Candler was so special. I realized that I was getting to see them during some of the best parts of their days. Homework and playtime and rides in the car. When their parents got home they had to do dinner and bath and bedtime and it was more of a rush. I didn't want to miss my kids best parts of the day. I also just truly LOVED those kids. I'd never loved children that way and I knew that the feelings I had were similar to what I'd feel as a mom. I still call them "my kids" and they will always, always hold such a special place in my heart because they are the first children I ever loved and the ones who showed me the kind of children I hoped to have.
They ended up moving the same summer Zach and I got married. I was devastated when I found out they were leaving. I'd always pictured Madeline babysitting my kids one day! I'm thankful for social media and that I can still see them that way (Madeline is now in college! She's GORGEOUS, duh, and Candler is an amazing athlete which is no surprise!). I know to them I'm just a girl who used to babysit them but to me they will always be so much more than that.
Of course they were both in our wedding and, as you know, we named our first child Candler after that precious boy we love so much!
I continued to babysit some after we got married but that kinda phased out. It just wasn't the same for me without Madeline and Candler in the mix. I do love running into the kids I used to babysit for around town and seeing how grown up they all are! Kye came home recently and said that a kid in his class got to meet the quarterback of our local football team and I told him "honey your mama used to babysit for that boy" hahaha I'm so old!
Zach and I were both pretty passionate about me staying at home once we had kids so we decided as soon as we got married that I'd never get a legit job. We didn't want to start relying on my income and thought it was best to always just rely on his. (So yes, I have a college degree AND an insurance license that I don't use!) I'm thankful we made that choice because we never had any issues once babies came. We were already used to our roles of me being the homemaker and Zach being the money maker. We have never argued about money because I don't make any and he does a fabulous job of listening to my input about our spending what he makes!
Our first year of marriage we were both in college still and Zach was playing football so we were very much "living on love." I remember taking out a student loan for $5000 so I could buy a car because I didn't have one (my dad had leased mine and took it back when I got married) and I got a HUGE old beat up truck with that money. It was pretty hilarious. We also lived in the straight hood (like our neighbors had exterior video cameras on their doors and bars on their windows and I was scared to walk to the mailbox alone) but we look back at that time with nothing but happy memories! It all lead us to where we are now and I'm thankful for that time in our lives where we got to really have so much quality time together.
I also was living the dream. We didn't get pregnant with Kye until our 1 year anniversary so that meant I had almost 2 years of straight "chill mode." I'm not quite sure how I filled my time? I do know I spent a TON of it with my besties (and, yes, if Ashley is reading I had to include this pic b/c your eyes are shut haha classic Ashley!).
While I may not have some amazing story of job successes, I'm very thankful for the jobs I had and the lessons I learned from them. I'm especially thankful for my time babysitting Candler and Madeline as that job taught me more than any other and really helped guide my path to where I am today.
I'm so truly thankful to be a full time stay at home mom. While there is NOTHING wrong with being a full time working mom, a part time working mom, or a working from home mom...for our family (and for myself) me being a full time stay at home mom is what's best (I know it's not what's best for everyone and that's cool! But I know it's def what's best for us!) I'm thankful for the additional income I do make through the blog and through Advocare but neither one are things that take away from my main job of being a homemaker. My husband, my children, and our home are my #1 focus all day every day and I wouldn't have it any other way! It's not glamorous, it's not easy, and it's not always fun but it's my dream job and my passion!
My job plan for the future is to continue to stay home throughout my children's childhood. My master plan is to have a grand baby before our last child moves out so I can just skip the whole empty nest phase and start being a hands on grandmother ;) I already have it all figured out if my kids live in town that I'll totally be offering to keep those babies so they can all have date nights! And, duh, I wanna be that cool Disney grandma too...and I'm reminding my children on a regular basis that when they have kids I wanna be there for all their first Disney trips. ;)