I love New Years.
It must have something to do with my semi Type-A personality, the goal setting, list making side of me.  I love Mondays, the First of the Month and most of all New Years.
I can’t stand it when people say, “I don’t make Resolutions.”  as if its a bad thing to be excited about a Fresh Slate – even if the freshness is really only mental.  
I am resolved to do tons of things better this year; everything from keeping my kitchen “junk drawer” not so junky to reading more.
Last year was the hardest year our marriage has ever experienced.  The root cause? – money or rather our reaction to the serious, life changing lack of it that has taken place in the last 365 days.  We were budget obsessed and frugal before but when you are living worse then paycheck to paycheck there is nothing to budget and forget frugal – you just don’t buy (or repair for that matter) anything.  Remember that trunk I crawled into this summer?  Still broken.  
For awhile there it really took it’s toll on us.  I was depressed, crying all the time, my nerves frayed.  And Joel?  Well, men were designed to care for their families.  When they can’t do that they way they think they should – it’s torture.
One of our “splurges” this year turned out to be our Christmas Tree.  
A few weeks ago we bundled up the kids and went out in the direction our our favorite Christmas Tree Farm.  We rode the tractor out into the field like we do every year but quickly began shooting each other concerned looks as it was obvious the drought a few years back and the fact that we were tree shopping the last weekend they were open had taken it’s toll on the fields “inventory.”  As in: NADA.
The kids were FREEZING and it was a situation were Joel might get a little short and exclaim, “Forget, we’re going to Home Depot!”  but he did not.  Instead, very out of character he said, “There is another farm up the road.  I think I know where it is.”
Ok” I say.  Cause I’m hell bent on cutting our own tree.  So we drive just about to the state border on quite a little goose chase to this MEGA FARM that was sheer pandemonium.  My GOSH!  Hello????  Got an acre or 500 – plant some freekin‘ pine trees and call yourself a millionaire 8 years from now!  Anyways – We pulled up and saw the sign, “You cut – $50”  
Great.  We had “budgeted” $35.  Thirty five that would have been better served buying groceries if you know what I mean.  Well, at this point we were 30 minutes from home so we  parked and Joel ran up to see if they had an ATM for our $15 balance.  We parked next to a huge Suburban that was “wrapped” in a marble faux finish.  On the side in huge letters was the name of a Chicago based painting and faux finish company.  Joel said, “Oh, I know that name.  They’re huge.”  Obviously.  The vehicle sported showroom names and everything!  Joel jumped out and I began to pray.  “Dear Lord, Please bring the owner of this vehicle out while we are sitting here.”  Sure enough, a man walked up with his tree and I told Aidan and Amélie not be be scared, I was going to jump out for a minute!
“HI!”  I exclaimed to the guy.  He received me well so I proceeded to tell him all about my husband, his paint skills, his faux skills, his ethics…I silently prayed that Joel would walk up soon and he did!  We explained about being burned out on owning our own company and that it just has not been the same since the babes since I can not help as much (never mind that work as fallen off the planet compared to other years!!!!).  This nice man is an employee, not the owner but has been with the company for EVER and is clearly SOMEONE since he was driving that beautiful vehicle.  Anyways, he said, “We are slow now but hold out ’til April and give us a call.”
“HA!” We thought as we got back in the car.  April is thousands of income dollars of needed away but we vowed to fax the resume and link to Joel’s online portfolio the moment we got home.  We heard back from the guy the next day via email.  He said to wait til everyone gets back into the office after the 1st and then for Joel to call so he could “come down for a meeting.”
Here is where you come in.  After a year of faxing resumes and applying for jobs – We need this job.  It’s not Joel’s dream job but it would provide EXACTLY the amount we need to live modestly and would allow us to BREATHE and think about Joel looking into furthering his education at night, perhaps something in the medical field as his career testing has revealed would be a good fit for him.  Besides, if there is ANYTHING we have learned this year it is this, Work is a blessing.  When you go without it you learn NOT to complain about where your paycheck is coming from.
We have been praying for 3 weeks that Joel would daily be brought to this guys mind, that he would not have delayed to tell the owners about Joel, that their work would be blessed thus creating a specific need for Joel and that the interview would come swiftly when Joel calls next week.  
Please join with us in these prayers.  We are so happy to have a New Year before us.  We are praying that God would bless us with this opportunity.  We are so anxious to have God close this chapter on our lives.  Joel will be calling Monday the 5th. 
God is good.  This morning the four of us held each other as we committed this year to the Lord.  We thanked him for last years trials.  We have grown so very much. 
 It is going to be a wonderful year.  
Happy New Year,
Love, Ang and Family