Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Promise after promise

Many of you know the story of how God started this business. 

While Hire A Housewife has done much better than expected considering I have never run a business before, overcoming my personal past has been quite a struggle. Hopefully, it is a struggle that others can find encouragement in. 

In that hope, I've decided to share my personal blog with my Hire A Housewife fans as well. I've had good days and bad, and if you've not read it before you might be surprised by some of the things I say.

I started this blog as a way to hold myself accountable for my choices and promises to others and to God. I am real. I am honest. Sometimes I am confused beyond belief, but that's human... and I am definitely that.

I did not become homeless just under three years ago by living right or making Godly choices. Some of those choices I made were based on wrong beliefs I had about others and myself. 

With some of those choices I caused myself deep wounds, some that are still healing.

God is still working on me, but I am excited by all He is doing. So, if you feel inclined to share in my personal journey as well, I'd like to invite you to check out and subscribe to my blog here:


Like I said, I am excited by all that God is doing and I want to be able to share with all of you in the coming weeks. 

Have a blessed day!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Tackling the girls' room (Days 1 & 2)

When the girls came home from their dad's house, I put them to work cleaning the floor and warned them not to touch anything else... They complied. Everything was sorted into bags and boxes like I asked.




The next step was cleaning out their dressers and shelves. They got part way through on the first night, but I soon discovered the drawers on the short dresser were full of junk. Ella's answer, "I don't want to keep clothes in my dresser." (Nice try.)

By late afternoon on Day 2 (after school Tuesday) they had almost finished cleaning out the dressers and shelves.



However, I had a meeting from 6:30-8:30 on Tuesday evening and I came home to find they had jumped ahead a few steps in the process. They were going through all of the boxes that I told them not to touch without my permission.

They put most of it back, but the stacks themselves are much less organized now.
I also found a Build-A-Bear rescue had been initiated, their newest stuffed animals pulled from the garbage bags, now laying on the bed.

So what is the next step?

One bag/box/tote at a time everything from their floor is being washed, dried and put in the living room on the couch. I don't want any mass decisions made about anything. We will touch each piece of clothing and decide if it is a keep, donate, or trash item... as well as who it belongs to. You wouldn't believe how many times I said to myself when I was picking up the clothes originally, "Hey! I wondered were that shirt went..."

We probably have 4 or 5 loads to go today... and there is household laundry mixed up in this... but before I let them touch anything else on the broken bunk bed, we will decide where every piece of clothing goes. I have a feeling that will be a battle in itself. I have yard waste bags waiting to be filled to be dropped off at Mission Mart.

Even for 5 people, we have a lot of clothes to go through.

This might take awhile... 



Monday, January 19, 2015

Tackling the girls' room

Anyone who has heard my testimony knows that I am not usually afraid to tell it like it is. It's important that people know me, my household, and my family are far from perfect. When I come into yours, and give you ideas or help you clean something up, I am not judging you... I have no right to! I say that whatever mess you have, we have already seen it and cleaned it up before, and it was probably in our own house.

Well, if you don't believe me after this post, I don't think I'll ever be able to convince you.

My three girls, ages 17, 11, and 9, share a bedroom. I am constantly telling them to clean it up, pick it up, put laundry in the bathroom, throw away the water bottles, etc. When the bottom bunk of the bunk bed broke a couple of weeks ago, I realized that even if I found a replacement, I couldn't get into their room to change anything out.

If you read regularly, you have no doubt seen my posts about how you can de-clutter anything in 15 minutes a day. I have to say, that doesn't include a child's bedroom if they are still living in it and not picking up after themselves. Today I decided I was fed up the less than enthusiastic efforts of my children, and took it on myself to get them started.

Here are the steps I have taken so far to move us forward in this process...

1. I took pictures of everything.




2. I started bagging things up while they were gone today.
 
     *All stuffed animals and pillows in garbage bags.
       EVEN FAVORITES (Motivation for later.)
     *Anything else washable from the floor into totes and garbage bags.
       ESPECIALLY FAVORITES (Motivation for later.)
     *Books, movies, etc. went into boxes.
     *Shoes went into a box

3. I didn't pick up any trash.




4. As I worked, I swept everything to the center of the room. EVERYTHING. And I stacked the stuff that had been bagged and boxed (all will be gone through one at a time.)




5. I worked until I was tired and had other things to do.   
     Then I wrote this note for when they came home.



I also added that they were not allowed to put anything "away" ... because all of the "aways" still needed to be cleaned out as well.

Next step: To have them clean off their dressers and bookshelves so there is a place to put whatever they decide to keep.


This is honestly a risky blog post to put out on my business blog... I mean, what if we don't get it done? What if it turns out that I'm too busy or too exhausted to stay on them and three months from now my 17yr old is still sleeping on her mattress on the floor because I didn't stick to this or make them stick to it either!?!

Well, that will be just another reminder that I am human as well. Hopefully, though, instead of that, over the next week I will be able to show you that even though sometimes things get out of control at my house too, it is possible to take back control.

When I said I "other things to do" and stopped cleaning and wrote that note... I didn't just mean writing this blog post...



Today I'm going to take down the Christmas tree.

Friday, November 14, 2014

I've Decided

How often do we decide to start something, make a positive change in our lives and then fall flat after a few months, weeks, days…? If we’re talking about a diet, for me, it could be just hours!

There is a new organization in Peoria called “I’ve Decided” that was created to help people not only choose to make their lives better, but also to link them up with motivation and support partners who can keep them on track. While I thought that this was a fabulous idea from the first time I heard about it, there was a moment when I knew that there was definitely a place for Hire A Housewife within I’ve Decided.

With I’ve Decided, people who have decided to run their first 5k can link up with Running Central and not only receive information about training and running, but also actually run their first 5k this summer… in a race that is ONLY for first time runners!

Have you decided to take control of your finances? I’ve Decided not only provides motivation and support, but they can connect you with professionals like Vickie Streitmatter from Empowered Financial Living, who can help you create a budget you can live with.

Those who have decided to take control of your home, through cleaning, decluttering, and organizing can be partnered with Hire A Housewife to not only help keep you motivated, but also to help give you the skills and/or extra hands you need to make it happen. We want you to succeed!

CEO, Kim Martin and I were talking about partnering a couple of weeks ago when she asked me if I would be willing to speak to people about my story. Of course I said yes! We started talking about motivation and why we do what we do and she mentioned using “I’ve decided…” when I spoke at her event. She said, “Something like, I decided to start my own business…” and I my heart jumped a little.
I like Kim so much and was excited about the opportunity, but I had to make sure we were on the same page. I told her that I have to give credit where credit is due and that I never really decided to start a business. I decided to do my best to live a life that honors God, and He has taken care of everything else. I waited for almost no time at all, although it seemed like forever before she spoke.

Her reaction was a huge smile and a “That’s perfect!” That’s when I was sure I was supposed to be part of I’ve Decided!

Starting Monday you will begin seeing commercials on TV for I’ve Decided and their motivational conference being held at the Civic Center in January. Check out the website www.IveDecided.org for more information. It is going to be a great experience for all involved!

So, tell me… what changes are you wanting to make in your life? What do you want to be able to stand up and say “I’ve decided” about? Want to get in better shape? Want to spend more time with your children? Want to rejuvenate your marriage? Want to organize your home?
New Year’s resolution time is coming… and the conference is right after! But, you don’t have to wait until the first of the year! Tell me, what will you decide?

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Giveaway Instructions (Ends 10/30!)

Good Afternoon!

I'm incredibly excited by the response we've received for this giveaway so far. Thank you for your enthusiasm!

There has been some confusion on HOW to enter the giveaway for one month of free housekeeping. I wanted to write a quick post and make sure everyone had the chance to get in on the drawing!

To make sure you are entered for the grand prize:

     Click on this link... 
Win One Month of Free Housekeeping!

That link will take you to a form that looks like this:

Fill it out and hit SUBMIT at the bottom!

That's it! You're in!

To make sure you are entered for second prize:

     Share that link with your friends and ask them to enter your name in the box that asks how       they heard about the contest!
That box will look like this:

It's that easy!


Ways to share...

     *Share a post from Hire A Housewife on your wall
     *Invite your friends to the Facebook Event : CLICK HERE
     *Email the link to your friends who might want to join. 
          They do not have to be on Facebook!
     
Note: Sharing does NOT enter you in the giveaway. You MUST fill out the form!

Thank you and have a blessed day!



Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Come...

I shared this elsewhere, as I do a lot of my personal writing. But I keep feeling like it needs to be shared here as well. If you are reading my blog, you probably know my story. I am pretty open and honest about the fact that I am still in the process of growing and changing, working to become more like the woman God created me to be. 

It's all a process. Everyone has room for improvement. Everyone is on their own journey. I just happen to be more open than most when it comes to sharing my journey to become that woman...



God made me a pretty smart girl.
I have some good ideas from time to time.
If a good idea in a willing servant is God-inspired,
there is very little that can keep it from becoming reality.

As much as I try to be a willing servant
so many "good ideas" have fallen apart for me 
when I tried to take action on them.
Even the ones that I thought would bring Him
the glory He wants and so richly deserves. 

Don't You see that I am trying to do something amazing here?
When people see it, they will give You the glory!
This will prove to so many that it only takes
faith to move mountains. 


Then it doesn't work out, and I am heartbroken.
Tired, depressed, angry, irritated, and unmotivated.
Pray? Why bother? (As if I'm punishing Him.)
Read? I don't feel like it. (As if somehow He will cave to my sulking.)

I'm reading a book, The Extravagant Fool by Kevin Adams. Here is an incident he related in this book between him and his daughter that floored me, probably much like it did Kevin when it happened...
At age four she came bouncing from the bathroom, dripping wet with tears in her eyes, to ask, “Daddy, didn't you say that anything is possible with God if you just believe hard enough?”

“Sure, sweet girl. Absolutely.”

“Well, Daddy . . . I’ve just come from the bathtub, and it was filled up to the top.”

“Uh-huh.” I suddenly imagined myself backhanding the floating chairs, toilet seats, and toothbrushes half submerged in Bathroom Lake.

“Daddy?”

“Yes, sweetheart?” I’m now reluctantly reaching for the bathroom door, with her close behind me.

“Well, um . . . I’ve been trying and trying to walk on the water the whole time, and I just can’t do it. I’m really sorry, Daddy. I believed I could do it with God’s help, but I can’t — and I’m really sorry.”

With profound silence, I looked at her curious little face and hoped for a routine word ...

... But all I had to offer this time was a hug — one I couldn’t let go of without a little extra help from above.

Help me, Father. Just one thought that gently brought the next one:

Anything is possible with Me, but not everything is useful to Me. Peter only walked after I said, “Come.” 
“Sweet girl,” I said on the heels of that thought, “it is possible for you to walk on water, but only if it’s something God wants you to do. Did He tell you to walk on the water?”

“No, Daddy, He didn’t. I just wanted to.”

Before I could finish that brilliant thought, though, she was on to the next subject.

It doesn't matter if I have the best intentions or the worst intentions. It doesn't matter if my end goal is selfish or if I want it to work for His glory. If it isn't His will, I will ultimately fail.

I can tell God I want to make a relationship work, I want to write a book,
I want to grow my company into something huge in His name,
I want to bring people to Him with the story He's given me
I want to teach teen moms their self worth and help them
break free from the negative patterns in their lives,

I want to walk on water.

The reason why doesn't matter.
Whether trying to bring glory to my name or His.
None of what "I want" means anything...

If I don't first listen for Him to say "Come..."


And He said, "Come!" And Peter got out of the boat, and walked on the water and came toward Jesus.
~Matthew 14:29

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Learning Experience

People often ask, "How long have you been in business?"

My standard answer is May, 2012. I'm also quick to point out that I didn't know I was starting a business at that point. I was almost an entire year in before I realized what God had created. In these last 26 months, I have learned more than I ever imagined and I am so thankful for all that God has done. As with any learning experience, knowledge brings some changes. While there are many in the future, here are a few that are happening right now.

HaH Rates
I'm going to be honest here (as I always am!) and share that I have now learned how expensive it is to have employees! Besides the cost of their salaries and the employer taxes associated with them, my employees are covered with General Liability insurance, Bonding insurance, Unemployment insurance, and Workers' Comp insurance.

Because of these things, new customers will be charged $18per hour beginning August 1st, 2014. If you are already a regular customer at that point, we will continue to serve you at our current rate for now, and that won't change in the future without 30 days' written notice.

Employees and Training
Another thing I've learned about having employees is that I can't make all of them care about the business as much as I do. I tell them all at interviews that if they are only in this for the paycheck, they will probably not last very long at this job. You have to love serving others.

I have made several personnel changes and am in the midst of revamping our training processes yet again. It is important to me that all of our customers are more than satisfied with the service they receive from Hire A Housewife.

Answering Your Questions
What else have I learned? Personally, I have learned how much I love connecting with people. I love being able to help others on many levels. One way I'd like to be able to do more of that is through the Hire A Housewife blog posts. 

As I've said before, like any good housewife I have an opinion on just about everything.... I'd like to share it with you if you are interested in hearing it.

So, I want to know what you want to know! Give me something to post about! Have a question about gardening, cleaning, or organizing? Just ask! Maybe you want a recommendation for a good Bible study or have a question about raising children, or even owning a business... Send your question through the "CONTACT US" form on our website or through Facebook. 

If you are wondering something, then there is a pretty good chance that someone else is wondering too!

Have a blessed day and I look forward to hearing from you!