GrowingForChrist

Faith, Family, Love and Reviews

Going back to school


I graduate high school in 1997, went into the United States Navy, and then graduated college with my Associates in Social Work in 2001 – the same morning I found out I was expecting our 2nd baby but the first to be born. I tried to go to an online college after that but it proved disastrous with a newborn baby – so I decided I didn’t need anymore college. I love to read, I love to learn – so studying was never hard and most subjects, excluding math, came easy for me, but my husband and I had decided I’d stay home and we’d be homeschooling so really a BSW (Bachelor’s in Social Work) wasn’t really a need. The online college I was pursuing a paralegal degree.

That said – now that I’m widow I know I have to start planning for the future, both my children’s and my own – the survivor benefits will decrease once my children are no longer eligible, even though I’ll continue to get mine for the rest of my life – there may be some rules about that but I can’t remember them all. However, once my children’s go away I’ll be living on next to nothing so I need to plan. With that said I’m going back to college to earn my BSW.

I applied to a well known, at least in my area, Christian university however they had absolutely no help for widows, which struck me as ironic for being a Christian university. They also weren’t real happy with me refusing to take loans or wanting to do the majority of my general ed classes online. One woman told me I should just focus on “being the best mom I could be”, yes, that is what I’m doing, why do you think I want to take online classes. So after much prayer and discussions with trusted advisers I decided that University wasn’t the one.

It used to be that the state of Ohio, or at least that is what I was told, would not recognize a social work degree that was completed online but on the off chance I contacted Liberty University Online (LUO). I spoke with several people who assured me of their regional accreditation and that they did indeed have a BSW program. Okay Lord? Well then things really started falling in place – they were actually excited that I didn’t want to use student loans and then I was told I qualify for the military discount pricing! Okay Lord I’m getting it. I can do the whole program online, from the comfort of my home except for my practicum which I knew before hand.

I’m already registered for my first four classes, which makes me a full time student right away but I’m so excited! My goal is to become a Path Coordinator (although I’m sure the title will change as it often did for my husband) with our local Board of DD. There are many things to consider though such as I would need to work 30 years more to receive retirement through our state’s system – they don’t pay into SS – which means I could be in my 70’s when I would retire and I want to enjoy my grand-babies so I may have to look into whether I pursue private employment, but I have time to wait on that. I may even pursue my Masters in Counseling after my BSW, I’ll see where the Lord leads.

Right now I’m waiting on my financial aid to be received and processed so I can find out exactly what I’ll be getting, but the estimate seems like it would pay for almost all my classes each semester. I know I’ll still have some out of pocket expenses, which is fine but not what it would have been like had I gone to the other University where my financial aid wouldn’t have covered even 1 full semester. My desire is to do this debt free, to honor the Lord and also to stay out of debt that my husband got us out of and having paid off my ASW earlier this year with the life insurance.

I want to note if you feel led to donate to my educational expenses donations can be made to the Bailey Family Fund at any Huntington National Bank (100% will come to me), there is also a GoFundMe page (they do take a percent), and my friend is hosting a fundraiser for anyone who purchases from her site or her Currclick page – search Shari Crooks (you don’t have to be a homeschooler to use her products). Any helps is immensely appreciated and will go towards my education – books, supplies, gas once I begin my practicum (internship in other fields), etc.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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Happy (Very Belated) 11th Birthday


My middle daughter – asked me if I was going to do my usual special blog post that I do for their birthdays – I said sure, well we were also on vacation AKA running away for her birthday. Now that we’re home I have time to sit and write her special 11th birthday post, although admittedly it is VERY late – her birthday is September 29th.

She was a bald, beautiful baby!

Here she is with her Great-Grandpa.

All three of them – she had a bit of a crying spell before the photo session.

She could and still does manage to fall asleep in weird places and positions.

Helping to churn butter at a living history event.

Her first day of school when we were using FIAR and studying Madeline.

She and her older sister at Praise Him in the Park in September 2014 – she loves to dance and praise the Lord.

She and her brother receiving their religious awards through American Heritage Girls from our Pastor (it was completed at another church but our Pastor gave them their medal). This was on 2-22-15.

She is my funny girl, she loves to tell jokes no matter how horrible they really are and we all laugh – this is a trait she got from her dad. Right now I have a drum set sitting in my computer room that we have no idea where to put it because she begins drum lessons tomorrow, I agreed to this if I could find someone we could afford (thankfully the Lord put a woman who is blessing us with a weekly 45 minute lesson in her home) and if she continued with piano as well. The house is about to get louder. She is turning into lovely young lady who gave her testimony and was baptized this spring in our church – her desire is to serve the Lord through missions and dance and one day be a wife and mom to many. I love my middle daughter.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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Happy 9th Birthday to my Son


My son’s first happy meal – he was so funny!

This day nine years ago I was at the hospital early with my husband and our two girls, waiting for the pitocin to kick and walking the halls. My little man entered the world several hours later and captured my heart. Much like daughters do to their dads, this little man won me over – my worries over what to do with a boy gone. I had a son. You can read the birth story.

My son grocery shopping at a near by children’s science museum.

I cannot believe he’s 9! It’s been a rough few months – he is the one who found Don but thankfully he didn’t realize at first, he just thought dad was still asleep but had had an accident. It’s hard to be a mom who doesn’t know what it will be like to be a teen boy in a few years and all that comes along with it.  I know that the Lord will be with us, just as He got me through the potty training and getting used to having a son He’ll get me through being a widowed mom of a boy.

Yes, those are his shorts on his head. He still makes me laugh with his silly antics.

He laughs at farts and tells gross jokes – he reminds me of my husband in that way not to mention he looks like him too. He’s a yellow belt in karate and tests again on the 30th for his next belt, I think it’s an orange with white stripe. The dojo he’s been at now for about 4 years has become like an extended family. He took a boys hip hop class last year and really enjoyed it too, unfortunately it’s been discontinued.

With his umbrella he painted in a College for Kids summer class back in 2012.

As soon as his eyes open in the morning he is ready to go, go, go – while he still has a temper (comes by it honestly) he is also the sweetest little boy. If I’m feeling sick he makes me get well cards and draws me pictures. He still likes to watch Ben 10, even though it’s no longer ‘popular’. He enjoys going to Sunday School and Junior Church. He is doing better with reading and I can see him conquering it very soon! Some days are hard, as being a mom can be, but in the end when we’re snuggled on the couch or in the bed reading a book it’s so worth it. Happy 9th Birthday to my little guy, to my son.

(c) 2015, Sarah Bailey/Growing for Christ, All Rights Reserved, Unauthorized Duplication is a Violation of Applicable Laws

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