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I got a raise!!!


Can I get a “woohooo!!!!”

But before we get too excited, let’s have a little #truth.

I don’ know if you can really consider it a “raise” because what happened is I took on additional work. So, yeah, my income is going to raise (and not by just chump change…a pretty decent upward improvement), but it is in exchange for additional work.

It was a bit unexpected, but I’m very grateful for it. Even though I’m not an “employee” (I work on a contract-basis), I still somehow feel like a very valuable “team member” at this particular university, we’ll call it University A (remember – I work for multiple universities, but I don’t feel comfortable divulging where). I feel well compensated for my work and have established a great working relationship with the faculty, administrative staff, and other contract-employees as well (all done through distance & technology – pretty amazing!)

So I’ve given it a great deal of thought and, although this may disappoint some, I think this new development has rendered this conversation moot. I hope you will not be angry with me! I had been thinking about reducing daycare to save money for a LONG time….it was not something I was just spouting off randomly and have taken back just as suddenly. Instead, I’ve made the calculated decision to leave our situation as-is for now (care 3 days a week instead of reducing to 2). The additional work I have picked up more than makes up for the $200 in savings per month, many times over. And with additional work, I really believe I’ll need the extra day of childcare per week. Also, as an aside, last week the girls were only in daycare 2 days instead of 3 (the provider had a pre-planned trip that left us out-of-care for a day). OF COURSE, this is when the WORST ALLERGIES OF MY LIFE hit! I felt like I was dying from the sinus pressure, migraine, non-stop sneezing, etc. I looked like I had pink eye because my eyes were so puffy, swollen, red, and watery (I took a picture, but I’ll spare you the gory image). Let’s just say….very little work got done. And now I’m way behind (and I don’t get paid until my work is done, so that’s a problem!) And it just made me recognize how valuable our current childcare situation is. $50 WELL SPENT, if you ask me!

That was a long side-note – let’s get back to the employment situation…

Of course with contract situations there is no guarantee of ongoing work. But, so far, I have been made to feel very safe and secure in our current situation at University A. I will say that this situation is with online teaching, so I get a new contract every semester. I don’t see the current situation changing anytime soon.

With my other “employer” (said in quotations because, again, I’m not technically an employee since its a contract-based job…we’ll call this University B), there is not as much job security. This job is mostly research-based, so whenever the current project is completed I could be out of a job. At this point I’ve been working with University B for 6 months and have worked through completion of 4 separate projects (being asked back after the completion of each previous project). But this “raise” makes me feel much more comfortable because previously I earned my pay approximately 50% from each (research job and teaching job, respectively). This additional work (and associated pay) tips the scale to where I am now earning my full “old” salary solely at the teaching job. Any money from the research job is just gravy. So, as long as the research job continues, I’m coming out ahead. If the research job were to cease today, I’d still be making the same salary I’ve been accustomed to.

Doing contract-based work certainly requires some flexibility. You never know what the future holds and there’s no guarantees about anything.

But, with that said, a little birdie told me I could potentially be expecting another “raise” come the Fall semester at University A. *fingers crossed*  We’ll see!!!


    • Reply Ashley |

      Definitely the majority of it will be earmarked for debt payments. It’s something we’ll sit down and talk about during our monthly “budget meeting” once the raise comes through (starting 2 weeks from now).

      • Reply Kristina |

        Good good. Just remember…save or pay down debt. Don’t incur new debts because you’ll have some extra moola to throw around. And stick to your budgeting as best you can!

  • Reply TPol |

    This is great news. Congrats! I think what you did with the day care situation is what I would do too. After all, for a solid and permanent position in the future, you need to build your resume. It seems the kids are enjoying their facility and at their age they do not need much structure as suggested by your spouse. So, earning more money is good for the pocket and doing extra work is good for the resume. Seems like a good deal to me. What are your plans about this “raise”? EF, debt payment or what?

    • Reply Ashley |

      We’ve already got a decent emergency fund, so the majority will be allocated toward debt. I say “majority” (and not “all”), because my husband is definitely a saver, so we’ll have to come to an agreement on how much to save versus throw toward debt, but I know the majority will be debt repayments.

  • Reply Walnut |

    If your husband would prefer to save some of the money, you can always create a ‘sinking fund’ for one of your debts. There’s no reason saved money has to be saved forever. Plus, with the mystery illness and two little kids, it never hurts to have a little more in savings.

So, what do you think ?