Monday, September 13, 2010

Husband = downsized and working in a lesser capacity for a wage that can only be described as a pittance.

Daughter = Senior year, intimidating class schedule. We're meeting bi weekly to develop a budget

Boy A: Fine

Boy B: Fine

Me: LOL - that's what I really need to talk about. But I don't have any readers anymore so perhaps I should resurrect the old diary, and dip my quill in the ink.

Things are better with my mom, and way worse with my dad. My only grace is in knowing that my kids have a reasonable parent, two in fact, that they may interact with.

Today (tonight) I'm hanging up my scapegoat badge and all the accommendations that come with it. I fucking quit.

I don't want to be 80 years old, sucking O2 from a tube, and regretting the time I wasted pursuing parental acceptance.

Rachael is checking out.... and it will likely result in some tears. I'll be blogging more often starting today. Cheaper than therapy, and I'll probably be more honest in this forum anyway.

Let's dissect my brain and talk about it. I'll be back.

- As Always, Rachael

Saturday, February 13, 2010


If I commit typos, fuck you it's too late to apologize....

My clients love me and that feels good. Little sister is getting confirmed so I'm spending five hours on one the road - one way - to be there.

I'll wait until she's older to tell her that her big sister is an agnostic who thinks religion complicates the world more than it helps. But my sister is only 13.... my honest opinions can wait.

In the meantime, I'll come out unscathed by catholicism. I just hope my dad's nicer to her than he was to me. If not, at least she''ll know I give a shit and have the experience to empathize.

If the holy water burns my forehead, I'll reconsider. If my seat catches on fire, I might revisit some of my convictions. I know all the words, though... to this recited ceremony. I'll be able to blend. Hail some Mary full of grace... How come GOD only appears in tortillas and similarly innocuous places?

Destiny... shit, if I believed in pre-disposal I wouldn't even try! I might even kill myself to avoid the turmoil set forth by my forefatherly (and motherly) genetic donors. They don't suck, but I'm pretty sure they aren't playing with a full deck half the time.

I can't fault them for the challenges they've faced... but come ON... how much money does it take to realize that your problems run little deeper? Religion can't fix everything... actually, I'd argue against it in every case.

But I'm going to my little sister's confirmation nonetheless. She's just a kid. I even wrote a speech to encourage her. I don't reference religion in a direct way, I just want her to avoid the pitfalls of being financially gifted and lose her spirit (not to be confused with soul).

I'm gonna go take my clothes off and crawl in bed with my husband. Don't wait up. Oh baby, baby it's a wild world!

As Always... Rachael

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Hello party people!!

And by "people" I mean the lovely and talented Jenny Rae!

The agency I signed with has a bonus package that I just now became aware of. It's offered to all new agents, and I have three choices:

1. Two free personalized yard signs, free open house signs, 1000 business cards, blank letterhead and other stationery, and three months free subscription to a proprietary database that's VERY useful. (I was going to subscribe anyway 'cause it's only $15.00/month).

2. $500.00 credit toward... anything. I can use the money the help cover any start-up expenses I have. Board fees, training fees, promotional materials.... anything!

Between options #1 and #2, I would lean toward #2... cash credits to use in any way I deem appropriate to launch my business... but there's a third option that has me thinking...

3. 94% commission for the first four months. That's 94% of any deals I close between now and the end of May. It's a gamble but....

I already have two listings. And if I can close either of them before May, the difference in commission will be about $800.00. BUT, even though the market's picking up, houses are still sitting for a while until the right buyer comes along.

It's time to play LET'S MAKE A DEAL! Which curtain would you guys choose? I'm ruling out #1 because I've already paid for some signs and business cards and I budgeted for those expenses without any expectations of being reimbursed.

Option #2 would be a guaranteed benefit. My initial board fees and training expenses will be right around $620.00... if I could knock that figure down to $120.00, I wouldn't complain.

Option #3 has the potential the unleash my inner shark, though. Whether I focus on listings or buyers, I'll get 94% of my half of the commission, and that's enticing. If I have a hand in a single sale, it'll be worth more than either of the other options... but if nothing happens, I've thrown away $500.00.

Too many choices. Ugh. I'm up too late. I really hope my training is cancelled tomorrow because of the extra foot of snow we got. It's still fucking snowing!

As Always... Rachael

Monday, February 8, 2010

Okay, so....

I did it! Completed my course-work on Dec 17th... tested a month later. Because of the holiday fanfare, I entered January feeling as if I hadn't learned a thing about real estate. I'd fortgotten everything I learned in school.

So... I studied. I studied until the words went blurry (might have been the vodka). I studied until I got to the point that every new definition I memorized pushed another important factoid out of my head.

Listening to Zeppelin on the half-hour trip to the testing site. "In The Light" came on first:

And if you feel that you can't go on. And your will's sinkin' low
Just believe and you can't go wrong.
In the light you will find the road. You will find the road

I took a water bottle filled with green tea and vodka into the testing site. Didn't drink any, but I brought it because I felt so uncomfortable, nervous, and ill-prepared. Despite (or maybe because of) studying my balls off, I felt overwhelmed. I was comparing myself to Linus, the Peanuts character. I had no intention of using booze, but I needed a security blanket.

I was really fucking stressed out. I woke up at three a.m. the day of the test, and I couldn't go back to bed for fear of over-sleeping. I had cramps and diarrhea. I take stress very physically, which just proves that I've been living in my own little world for far too long.

It wasn't about the test. This wasn't about an exam that I could take over and over again for a nominal fee of $120.00 a pop. No, sir. In my head this test had become a huge turning point. It had the power to redefine me and recover me...

Passing this test was going to give me permission to fire Rachael the reclusive house marm and drag her out of the lonely comfort zone once and all!

EVERYone knew my testing. I was advised to keep it secret (to reduce stress), but I'm a fucking big-mouth and I told everyone.

I passed - yay! I scored an 82% on the state portion and a 99% on the national! Nobody else I graduated with passed both portions on their first attempt. Not only that, but I obtained two listings my first week on the job! Complete strangers whose houses had expired on the MLS... and I set the appointments and captured their signatures... all the while thanking them for giving me the opportunity (I was honest about my new-ness to the business).

By the way, things on the marriage front are rocking and rolling in all the right ways! Hubby has been SOO supportive through this whole process: helping me study, bringing me breakfast in bed ('cause I'd go to sleep with a book, wake up, brush my teeth, and get back to reading with no thought of food). Mr. Rachael has his flaws... but he really stepped up to the plate on this one and our bond has deepened as a result. Maybe that's what I needed all these years... just to know that he had my back.

Peace and Love,


Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Last weekend Hubby and I had our 12th anniversary and went to a B&B, it was a nice place but I never want to go to a B&B again. #1, the people who owned it were older and our room was unbearably hot. We had to sleep with the windows open and I felt my carbon footprint growing to Armageddon proportions. #2, we were informed that the other rooms were boarded by a group of women visiting for their 50th high school reunion.

That's all fine and dandy, but my respect for others prevented me from having the kind of celebration that I wanted... naked and loud! Instead, we were in by ten o'clock and quiet as church-mice thereafter. Quiet naked church mice.

And being in someone's HOME, I just felt guilty about everything. When we checked out I mentioned that I'd spilled some steak juice from my after-dinner styrofoam container. Hubby asked me, "Why the hell did you tell them that?" And I said, "well, I don't want them to think it's something else (it looked like poop) , plus if they know what it is, they'll have a better chance of getting the stain out."

I need a hotel, man. That much is clear. I don't want to tiptoe, I don't want any guilt, and I don't want to sweat my tits off just because my circulatory system still works. I want to have sex, chill my beer in the sink with free ice, watch cable, shower under fire-hose water pressure, shove tiny soaps in my purse, throw a tip on the dresser and LEAVE.

It was nice though... and even though I was peer-pressured into going to bed by three am, I must admit it was a good night's sleep. Nice sheets. I would've have gone to bed before three in the morning, but I'm not accustomed to so many cable options.

Then on Monday, I signed up for real estate school. It's official. The tuition is paid and I'm pretending it's not refundable. I begin class on the 23rd of this month and I'll be done by Dec. 16th.

I've been dressing the part every day. My husband is like, "Why are you doing this?" To me it's simple. I've been home ruling the roost for a long time now. Pajama pants are my casual wear, and jeans are my formal wear. Unless there's a wedding or a funeral or a party, you'll find me in jeans or slippers. I feel I have to start playing the part now, so I'll have time to get accustomed. At this point, I feel about as comfy in a business suit as I would in a chicken suit. But I'm hoping that consistency will help me feel more relaxed and professional... and maybe even credible.

This is a big leap for me, you guys. It might sound simple, but I'm nervous. I need to re-train myself so those insecurities die in the face of confidence. I want to do this and I want to be good at it (replace the word "want" with "need," and the word "good" with "superfuckingfantastic!"

Love to all!

As Always....

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

High Dive

I was busy from about 3:00 on. I slept until then... so worn out from being up all night with a case of the "thinkies." Most of the shit I did won't be of interest... but I did do one thing.

I answered an ad in the newspaper with a local real estate agency and I have a meeting with a woman tomorrow at 2:30. So tonight, I will have to find a way to sleep, even if it means laying here and masturbating until I wear myself out. Gotta get my daughter out of the bed first, 'cause that's just creepy! I gotta sleep, because I have to go buy (yuck) pantyhose tomorrow.

Tonight I did hit the thrift store and found several petite suits that fit me okay. Fuck, it's been so long since I dressed this way... I looked at myself in the dressing room mirror and felt fake. It was like playing dress-up for halloween. If I decide to pursue real estate in earnest, I'll need to have these suits professionally altered because even petite sizes look long on me.

I also found a dress to wear this weekend... the hubby's ambush anniversary date. I don't LOVE it, but it looks nice on me so I bought in case I don't have time to find something else.

It was a good score. I bought an evening dress, 11 suits, several shirts to compliment the suits, a board game, a book, 2 shirts for the teenager, and two hard-side samsonsite suitcases... all for about 65 beans. They're nice suits, too. Quality brands and flattering cuts. Buying suits for $6.50, I won't mind spending $30 or $40 having them altered to my exact shape.

The board game was "upwards." My older kids can compete in Scrabble, but the little guy will benefit from this word game, I hope. My daughter loved one of the two shirts I bought... so if anyone wants a retro tinkerbell T in a medium, let me know. The suitcases are for ebay. I decoupage them, or paint them, and they sell for pretty good prices. The two I procured tonight are true gems.... with a garment section and secure hangers. They don't have keys, but I have a whole bucket of samsonite keys and I'm sure I'll figure it out.

I don't know why I keep buying them. I only have ONE suitcase listed right now (decoupaged in a rock-and-roll theme), but I have ten unfinished suitcases in the basement. Now I have twelve.
I'm not trying to increase sales via my blog, but here's the link just in case you're curious.... I do good work: My Expensive Suitcase

It's not really expensive.... these things take a week to create. That's why I'm considering painting them instead.

Anyway, I'm pretty nervous about tomorrow's meeting. Her first question on the phone was a weed-out one, "Do you have $1,000 - $1,500 to pay for your licensing classes?"

Well, yeah... if they accept Visa. If I had to put up cash, I might question myself right out of an opportunity. Because, when it comes down to it, I'm HAUNTED by the fact that I haven't produced significant income in a long time. Haven't seen a pay stub in a decade.

I try to remind myself, stuart smalley style, that I'm good enough, I'm smart enough, and, doggonit, people like me... but I'm still intimidated. There are two things working for me though... I love selling... and I love houses. Similarly to seeing the good in all people, I see the good in all properties. I can help people sell their house for top dollar, and I can help people find the house of their dreams.

HAHA... more affirmations. Guys, if I'm going to go for this, I must be committed! I can't waste a thousand bucks on a whim. If I had money to burn, I'd have prettier nails, a better haircut, a maid, and a fucking therapist. I don't think I need a therapist though... there's no flaw within me that I can't fix.

I'm going to have to fuck with my comfort zone, though. I may have to drag out some 12-yr-old diaries to remind myself that I have a successful spirit. The stay-at-home gig was good for the kids, but it was never good for me. I went from "driven" to lazy in a very short period of time.

It's not fair to call myself lazy... no one else has called me lazy... but mentally I've always compared what I'm doing with what I COULD be doing. I haven't always done my best. In the back of my head I've become resentful about being a maid, a cook, a wet-nurse, a laundress.

That brings me to the ONLY resistance I feel toward employment. IF I pursue this (and I want to), who's going to take care of the house and the children. Will it still be a job that falls on my lonely shoulders? If that's the case, this family will have to run like a well-oiled machine whether I'm present or not.

I'm gonna sink my teeth into this. I don't know what kind of interview this is, but I know it complies with my natural drive. I need a "sponsor" to apply for a real estate license... and I've no doubt that I'll get top marks across the board. This isn't 4th period history... this is important to my real life! I love selling and I love houses... I just need education on the legalities, and a mentor who will nudge me toward commission.

Nervous. But I've made up my mind. With or without hubby, it's time for me to work. I might as well do something I'll be good at and enjoy.

I can't believe I'm going to wear panty hose tomorrow and use an iron. What a mind fuck! I'm wearing bib-overalls right now and I like it that way. I'll make the fashion change if it makes me feel like I'm helping people and and earning an honest living.

When I was bidding on a used car, I chose a '68 Beetle over a kick-ass 80's mercedes. I won the Beetle, and I love it! But from a real estate standpoint, a mercedes would have projected the appropriate image.

Real estate may be a problem because I reject the idea of image (except when it comes to house-staging). Can I pull it off in an old Mercedes and thrift-store Dior suits? Time will tell.

Despite the question marks of "getting a job" and "my marriage," I'm really happy. The kids have been great. The teenager deserves a lot of credit because when I'm busy making dinner, she'll review her brothers' homework and make sure they've done it right. She never used to show such interest. It's proof that we're capable of being on a really tenacious team.

Now, how do I extend that initiative to include my husband? We all deserve to be our best... and and so far it seems that we're at our best when he's not here to throw a negative note into the symphony.

I'll be posting. Sincere thanks to anyone who's reading.

Love, Rachael

Inspired by a crazy cat lady

For as long as I can remember, I've struggled with balance. I'm up or I'm down... I'm on or I'm off.

There's an illusion running rampant in my head that believes in perfection and failure with no gray area, and both are toxic for me.

When I feel like I'm failing, a "fuck it" attitude takes over pretty quickly. Like, "Well, I'm late, so I'll just flake out altogether and invent an excuse to not show up." Or "Hey, this pan has burnt stuff on it, so I won't wash ANY dishes." Those are the days I watch Maury and judge other people for not knowing who fathered their babies. Good ol' Maury always provides me someone I can feel better than.

When I'm up, it's almost worse. So hung up on making everything perfect that I become a huge nag... "I JUST did ALL the laundry - WHOSE SOCK IS THIS!" With eyes so fiery that no one will admit to the orphaned sock.

Things have been nicer since hubby left. Weird. I don't have him to scapegoat, and it's much easier to manage the family because I'm not fixated on being pissed off at him. My main complaints about him aren't unique... I sound like a broken record. But with him out of the picture, I'm fucking happier. No guarantee it will last though.

But there are some differences. The kids are better about stuff. They aren't giving me any flack when I turn off the TV. They're helping to prepare dinner and with the clean-up. They're brushing their teeth without being told. They snuggle in my king-sized until one of them falls asleep and kicks me in the crotch... then they all go to their own beds.

I'm tempted to conclude that I am a better mother when left to my own devices. It's too early to tell, but I remember being a lot happier. I'm patient with my kids, I'm very IMpatient with hubby. For the past week I haven't had the luxury of noticing what he IS or is NOT doing... I'm doing it all, and things are getting done the right way the first time. It's nice.

Tonight the kids and I prepared a French gourmet dinner that was so delicious... my kids even ate brussel sprouts without bargaining. By 7:00 the kitchen was clean again, eveyone's homework was finished and in their backpacks, and we were free to snuggle and watch "House" without any obligations weighing on our minds. It's nice. We reviewed math facts during the muted commercial breaks. The kids seem happier and they aren't bickering over stupid shit. They're LOVING toward each other. It's a little like the Twilight Zone!

But I'm still awake at 5:30 am. I decided at 4am that sleep was not an option, 'cause I'd never get my kids to school on time if I hit the sack now. I tried to go to sleep at 2am... lights off and everything. I laid here doing nothing for damned near two hours before I gave up. I'm not going to sleep tonight. Not an option. I'm not wired to get by on a few hours sleep... it's all or nothing.

Today I'm going to hit the thrift store and look for a dress to wear this weekend (anniversary plans that hubby made before we agreed he needs to leave). I hope I find something cute because I don't want to pay retail.

I'm going to give it a college try... and look tasty all the while. I just gotta figure out how I can be MY best and not fixate on every single fucking thing he does wrong. He has to give me less ammunition.

It still pisses me off , though. The health of the family seems to fall onto the woman no matter what. It's not fair. When he has a bad day at work, I ask, counsel, and entertain... I do whatever I can to put a smile back on his face. When I have a bad day at "work," I'm abandoned and overlooked. I'm not designed to be invisible.

I guess that's the suckiest part... feeling like nothing matters, and I have too much freedom to indulge in my "off" days because no one gives a fuck as long as they have at least one clean pair of underwear.

Tomorrow's going to be great though. I can already tell. I'll sleep while the kids are at school, and I have a great menu planned for tomorrow evening. The only ingredient I don't have on hand is CHERVIL. WTF is that? Will it ruin the dish if I omit it?

Thanks for listening!