Monday, April 22, 2013

23 months!

Next month my baby boy turns TWO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, April 21, 2013


So, as many of you know I left full-time public school teaching at the end of the last school year. I knew when I left that I would not come back to teach in that environment. There were many reasons for my departure:
1. I wanted to spend more time with Joel. I never planned to be a stay-at-home mom, but there were many things that happened that led me to stay at home part-time with Joel. We had a horrible experience with his first daycare provider. We love his current provider, but we wanted to take on more of an active role in his daily life. I didn't want to feel as though his child care provider took my place. I know that probably wouldn't have happened, but I just see more of a disconnect in our generation with our kids. I'll discuss that more in another post. Anyways, Joel goes to daycare 2-3 times a week and we love it.
2. I became disillusioned with public school teaching. It just wasn't fun anymore. I no longer had the desire to spend extra hours tutoring, attending meetings, or conducting state-assessment prep camps. When Joel was born, I also stopped believing in public education, and that has become a big issue in our family as we have to decide quickly if he'll attend public school or private school or a mixture of the two.
3. I wanted to pursue a college-teaching career. I still do, but it is difficult to get a full-time teaching job at a community college or university, so I've been teaching part-time, which works well for our family.
4. I wanted to pursue my writing career. Back in 2007, I really started to delve into creative non-fiction and fiction. It started with creating little stories for my students. I also did a 3-week writing workshop through my school district one summer which helped to solidify that desire. Murad always encouraged me to write, but I never had the time and after many rejections, I just didn't know what to do. This past fall, I started writing again. I was hired on at a few educational start-ups doing script-writing and passage-writing, but was let go due to lack of funding. I also did publish some articles here and there and started a small resume-writing service, but didn't have much success. Well, now I have a steady freelance gig with Modern Dental Practice Marketing! I write blog entries for dental practice blogs. Looks like there will be more opportunities to do website-writing, etc. Since the blog posts are to be written as if I work at the dentists' office, I will not post links to my posts on my Ashlea Campbell Writing blog. In fact, I am thinking of taking down the blog. I can do a lot more through my Facebook page and it seems as though more people follow me there than on my blog or Twitter. Anyways, I'm excited about my new journey. I promise to post more of my writing when I can!

I leave you with a picture of my boys! I love them so much and couldn't imagine my life without them. Our little man will be 23 months tomorrow! We're a month away from two! He makes me smile so much. Today, we played in the yard, took a walk and watched movies on the couch. Perfect Sunday with them. Of course, he did eat everything in sight today, but that's my son!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Spring is Here

It sure doesn't feel like spring is here. Well, now it does. Our house is a hot 77 degrees. Earlier last week it was cold though. What gives? None of us have adjusted well to all the weather changes. Joely was really sick on Easter and most of last week. Thank God we have that Nebulizer; it's been such a life-saver
Tonight was the championship game for NCAA Men's Basketball. Louisville beat Michigan. I'm thankful for that since Michigan beat my Jayhawks in the Elite Eight. One crazy thing happened this year was that the university in my hometown made it to the Final Four. Yes! Wichita State University Shockers made it to the Final Four. We were in Wichita last week for Easter and were able to watch the game in Old Town with lots of Shocker fans, and lots of Wichita natives like myself. Although I am not an alum of Wichita State, I did take U.S. History After the Civil War there one summer and I also attended band camp there the summer after sixth grade. I also did countless activities there, so you catch my drift. No matter what though, I'm always a Jayhawk! I bleed Crimson and Blue
We've had some big changes and not so big changes in our home during the month March
1. We bought a new car! We bought an SUV (read: mom mobile) two years ago before Joel was born. We traded in Murad's 09 Ford Fusion for a 2011 Kia Sorento. Murad was going to drive my 04 Jetta and I'd drive the Sorento. We kind of ended up sharing the Sorento because the Jetta had so many problems and we wanted to keep the miles low on it. Well, we finally traded it in a few weeks ago and purchased a 2012 Nissan Altima. So now I'm back to driving the and Murad drives the Altima. We all feel a little safer on the road. I think we had starting skipping a lot of the big and small maintenance issues with the Jetta, and as a result we just didn't know when it'd die on the side of the road
2. We started remodeling. Over Easter our contractor pulled up the carpet and stained the concrete. We're going with the stained concrete look until we can afford to put down hardwood floors. It's so nice!!! This summer, we are gutting our master bathroom. We're extending the size of our master closet, putting in double sinks and a whirlpool tub. We're saving a ton of money by putting in some sweat equity, but our contractor is doing a lot of the big stuff
3. we got new jobs..again. So, Murad had been working in hospice and it was great and a payraise, but not enough for the work he was doing. Such a shame because he really loved his clients. Now, he's working for the county as a court investigator and loves it! Last week, I was hired on as a content manager (read: freelance writer) for Modern Dental Practice Marketing. I'm so excited about this job because I will work with get to start my writing career! The job is local, so I'll get to interact with other likeminded people, but it's work from home so I'll get the flexibilty I love. It's contract work for now (they had just hired a full-time writer when my application came in), but I have the opportunity to move into full-time work and still work from home. I'd really love to do that and give up some of my other jobs (namely teaching online). In addition, I'm still doing resumes and writing projects for clients. I'm now delving into editing. A friend of mine is writing a book and asked me to look over her first chapter. I loved, loved, loved reading and suggesting edits. I'm hoping my experience with MDPM will help me develop my editing skills and that I will be able to add that to the list of services Ashlea Campbell Writing provides.
4. Our Joely just keeps growing. He's now taking showers instead of baths. This has helped tremendously because we've all been so sick and the hot, steamy showers helps break up his mucous. He also loves to pee on the floor before getting in the shower and he does it when getting out of the shower. I'm using this as an opportunity to place him on his potty. Today I did it and he screamed. I'm hoping he'll warm up to the idea of peeing in the potty instead of on the floor. Joely can count to four. He loves to say two which is great since he turns two next month. I keep asking him how old he is and I'm trying to coach him to say two. Hoping he gets it down by May 22nd! Joel has a great obsession with airplanes. There are quite a few that fly over our house on the way to DFW and since we live next to a hospital we get a few helicopters flying over us from time to time. I think it's only fitting that he likes airplanes since his dad and I met at an airport. He got some cool airplane PJs from Nana and Papa for Easter. He looks so cute in them. Joel is finally starting to understand what no means. He loves to say it loudly at Kroger too! More importantly, he understands that when I say "no, no, no," he needs to stop doing whatever he's doing and repeat "no, no, no" after me. Saturdays are daddy/Joely days since I teach. Murad snapped a picture of Joel in the wine aisle at the sandwich shop. His caption read, "he darted to the wine aisle; just like his mom. smh." I could only laugh. My dear, sweet, future alcoholic (I kid) son
5. Abby is going through a lot right now. She's been asking to come stay with us more since her mom is so unstable. Not sure if she'll be down this summer, but it's looking like she will be for at least a week. Just keep her in your prayers. Hoping her mom gets her act together and that Abby can do well there, or that she can be where she needs to be.
6. Murad and I celebrated four years of marriage on March 21st! We celebrated in true Campbell fashion: lunch date without Joely and filling out brackets for March Madness. It seriously is our favorite time of year! Even though KU didn't go as far as we wanted, we had a great time watching basketball with friends, with family and with each other. I feel like NCAA March Madness should've been incorporated into our vows. Either way, it's a part of our family and it's what we love! I'm including a picture of us on St. Patrick's Day. We all wore green, but Joel is wearing the same Rock Chalk Shamrock shirt he wore last year (it's a 2T shirt). He can finally fit it! LOL

Happy April!! Hoping for some nice, spring weather!!!