Other, Parenting

To Stay Home or Not

Stay at home mom

To stay at home or not?

That is the million dollar question.

I know what my heart says and I think I know what God is telling me.  Signs just keep pointing in the same direction.

To stay at home it is…right?  Why is that easier said than done?

So let me fill you in on my issue. My husband and I have been trying to figure out for the past 2 years how to get me home with the kids full time versus working outside of the home. We have kind of chatted about it and we have thought about it but we have not really “talked” about it.  The biggest hurdle is going from a two person income to a one person income.

I will have to supplement at least some of the income that I will lose.  So I have been doing my research and crunching numbers and I must say that is not a fun job.  Anyone want to do it for me?  But for free of course because I can’t afford to pay you!!  Fine, I guess I will do the dirty work:(

There are more work at home jobs than I thought. I guess in this day and age with all the technology the opportunities are endless!

Just to give you a little background on my career path.  I graduated from high school in May of 1999.  We had our first daughter in August of 1999.  Since I was a mother, a young one at that, I couldn’t go to college. Well that was what my silly 18 year old brain told me anyway! So I worked a few dead end jobs until I realized I really could go to school and make a better life for us. My husband worked a lot and was gone all week so my idea was going to be an interesting journey.

In 2002 I signed up to become a college student!! That was exciting but not exactly the college experience I had dreamed about. Not many other students my age had a three year old and a husband at home.

I ended up graduating with a Bachelors Degree in Social Work in 2007. I had always longed to help people. This was the perfect field for me!

My first job in the social work field became mine right after graduation. The sad news about this field of study in a rural midwest state is that the travel is profound. I found myself working 14 hours a day in which half of that time was traveling. With a family of little ones this was getting very hard to manage. I loved my job and the foster families I worked with but I was drowning so I ended up taking a job for a small law office which is only 3 miles from my house. I work 30-40 hours a week and it is flexible. I enjoy working there and I have made some amazing friends.

BUT…with four children ranging in age from 14 to 2, I am needed at home much more than I am there.

Now that you know my story have a good evening!

Just kidding! We decided that We will try it and see how it goes. The law firm I work at does Income Tax preparation which goes until mid April so I will work until taxes are over. I actually talked to my boss yesterday and my co-worker today about my decision.

Now the transition begins:) Stay tuned to hear more as the stories developes!!


Hello, It’s nice to meet you!


Welcome to CountryChaosBlog which was created, we’ll today! My name is Crystal and I have a lot of hobbies and experience in a wide array of areas.  Notice I did not say expertise, but experience.  I don’t claim to be an expert in anything, but I have done and tried many things.  I love helping people and sharing things that have worked for me but at the same time, I love hearing what works for others as I tend to think inside the box!

I created this blog for a couple reasons. One reason is because our life is about to change or that is the goal at least!  I want to share our journey with you and to have a place to look back at all the changes over time.

Some of the changes we are making relate to living a “healthier” life which will include but limit us to: eating healthy, exercising, making our home more green, leaning on God for EVERYTHING, expanding our garden which is already Very Big, helping others in need and making our house a home!

I would like to introduce you all to my family. First of all I have been married to my husband, Brad, for 12 years.  We were high school sweethearts which includes a very crazy love story…I might share that at a later date!  We have four beautifully messy children, Haley (14), Olivia (7), Blake (4) and Lathen (2).  We stay very busy, which can seem a lot like Chaos, on our small acreage in the country in rural Iowa (hence the name of my blog).

Well, a little about me…I work full time as a secretary/receptionist at a very small law firm which is getting harder by the day.  I never in a million years thought I would want to be a stay-at-home mom but after trying to run a house full and work full time, things are not working well.  I want, no, I NEED to stay home.  My kids need me, my husband needs me and I need my sanity!!!  Our blog will take you through our journey.

Enough about me, let’s talk about the rest of my family…

Brad has always worked extremely hard.  He has mostly worked on road construction crews either doing manual labor or operating heavy equipment.  He is really a jack of all trades but the physical demands were causing a lot of stress to his body.  Brad had wanted to work for our county’s road department for a long time.  With about 5 years of applying but not having the required qualifications then working towards receiving his CDL and about a year of serious praying he got the job two weeks ago and started this past Monday. He also has his own business properly recycling metal, iron, etc.  He loves being outside so at times it is hard to get him in the house.

All four of our kids are quite different.  It is funny how the same two people can have four babies and not one of them is the same.  I enjoy watching them all grow into their own unique people.  They all fight for “mom” and “dad” time which is hard when we both work full time.  We are trying to create routines and consistency for them and ourselves so we don’t all go crazy…Oh shoot, it might be too late:)

We all enjoy being outside which is hard during an Iowa winter especially this winter as we have had sub-zero temps a lot!  Otherwise we love camping, fishing, hunting, playing outdoor games, swimming, campfires and gardening (not so much my hobby but that will be changing).  We also enjoy playing board games, card games, watching movies, crafting, making new recipes doing DIY projects and just hanging out together!

That is our chaotic country living family in a but she’ll. I really hope you stick around and see all I have to offer. I would love to hear from you. Let me know what you think of my blog so far!