Guess what today is.
Six years ago I sat in front of the computer and typed in different names of websites until I found one I liked and was available.
The Happy Housewife was born.
Many people have asked how I got into blogging. It’s funny because it all started because of a deployment. Eight years ago my husband deployed to Iraq. He was unable to receive emails so I decided to start a blog to tell him about our every day adventures.
I was at home with six small children, the oldest being eleven and the youngest was just a few months old. I sat down at the computer every day (almost) and wrote him a letter on my blog. This continued throughout the deployment and strangely, even though I wasn’t on Facebook, and Twitter, Pinterest, Google+ and Instagram didn’t exist people managed to find me.
I made a few blogging friends.
I continued blogging after he returned from deployment, but the purpose of my site was to tell a story of our deployment. Even if it was just the daily misadventures of our family of eight, it was something I looked forward to sitting down to at the end of the day. After he returned I didn’t have a story to tell, or at least I didn’t think I did.
To make things more complicated my husband sustained an injury during his first deployment that resulted in him getting vertigo. At first it wasn’t too bad, just moments here and there. We moved to our next duty station and he reported for sea duty. As time went on the vertigo got worse. He went to doctors but no one had a clue what was causing it.
Finally I told him I didn’t think he should be driving anymore. I told him that I couldn’t stop him from driving himself, but he would no long be allowed to drive the kids anywhere. His vertigo was almost constant and he was experience other side effects.
On the next doctor’s visit he failed so many of the tests they said he could not drive. For the next fifteen months we sought out answers from every specialist who would see him. We moved our entire family to another state to be closer to an expert doctor who had agreed to treat him.
They started him on a series of drugs that caused him to be in a zombie like state for several months. There were days when he couldn’t remember the kids’ names or even get out of bed.
He started therapy and since the kids were little and he couldn’t drive, they came with us to every appointment for the first several months. We had appointments four to five days a week most of the time. At some point my oldest was able to babysit and I would leave the “good kids” at home with her and take the rambunctious ones with me so the older kids didn’t fall behind in their school work.
We were told that they didn’t think he could be cured and that he probably would be like this for the rest of our lives.
I panicked. I had been a stay-at-home mom for twelve years. I graduated college after I had kids and had never used my degree. We had student loans and car payments.
I went a little crazy. Well I went a lot crazy. I went Dave Ramsey baby steps crazy. We at beans and rice, literally… every single day. I sold stuff, we cut every expense that I could. In five months we managed to pay off all of our debt.
In October of 2007 we called the Dave Ramsey showed and yelled, “We’re debt free!!!!!”
I was excited about being debt free and everything I had learned about saving money. I was also going crazy. I found myself a single parent to six children and caretaker to one very sick adult.
I remember that blog I hadn’t updated in several months and thought about writing again. Although this time I wanted it to be something different.
During the deployments, sea duty, and injury I felt alone. For most of my married life I had lived away from family and moved every 1-2 years. I hadn’t come into adulthood knowing how to do much around the house and didn’t live around anyone who could teach me once I was an adult.
I had an idea.
What if I started sharing all the things I had learned over the past fourteen years as a wife and mother? Tips and tricks from how to make a no-sew tutu to how to cook a chicken in a crock pot to how we got out of debt. I could be that virtual friend or neighbor for folks who felt alone too.
I knew I couldn’t use my old site because it had things like my kids’ names and very specific details about our lives.
So, on January 28, 2008 I asked the Commander if I could start a website that would be a resource to other women and mom’s out there just like me. People who didn’t know it all and were trying to figure it out as they went along.
He said yes and The Happy Housewife was born.
I blogged at night while taking care of the kids and Commander during the day. I loved getting my ideas and thoughts “on paper” every day and it quickly became a stress reliever for me.
Eventually all the drugs began to take their toll on Commander. He was in early stages of liver failure. They had to ween him off the drugs, which meant our hope of a cure was gone.
Miraculously, as he was weened off the drugs he got better. Not 100% better but significantly better. No doctor could explain it and some of the top neurologists in the country were shocked at his recovery. His main doctor made him go through the battery of tests twice because the results were so incredible.
He was healed and life got back to normal. (Well, as normal as it can be for a family of eight)
Six years later I find myself back in the same place I was in 2006, writing about my daily life during a deployment. It’s funny how things come full circle isn’t it?
So thank you all for making these six years awesome and for supporting our family through the good, bad, and ugly. I started this site to help others, but have truly been the one who has been helped by you.
I am blessed.
My husband has been deployed to the Middle East for 274 days. These are my real thoughts expressing my heart during his absence. I appreciate your prayers and kind words as we cope, adapt, and carry on without him until August 2014. To read from the beginning, click here.