153 Days Until My last Paycheck

Security is a wonderful thing until it isn’t.  I’m sitting here wondering where to begin… this is my first blog.  A few months ago a teacher showed up in my classroom to teach my class in front of the founder of the school and the Chief Operating Officer.  Back up a few days before that when I found out that a man, who by the way, I admire and follow on Instagram, was coming to our school.  I decided to ask because no one was talking about it and I was excited to meet him.  I left that conversation only to find out that he was coming to interview for my position at school.  Those who know me, know that I cry… I cry a lot. Just call me emotional.  Let’s just say that my password has 1dreamjob in it, and you can begin to understand that the news that day hit me like a ton of bricks.  

5 years earlier I was a special education teacher at an elementary school where I had worked for almost 20 years.  I loved my school but I was burnt out on all the paperwork that rarely gave me the opportunity to do what I was actually trained for and loved - teach.  The teaching was done by the paraprofessionals because every ‘I’ has to be dotted and every ‘t’ has to be crossed and the paperwork is unbelievable, overwhelming, and comes before anything… at least that’s how they make it seem if you miss a timeline for any reason.  Now I have to take a moment to explain the path that led to the “1dreamjob.” About 2 years before my big move to high school teaching geometry and construction I had got one of those flyers to refinance my house.  Not knowing how anything real estate worked I called, and a short time later I was at the closing table and they were handing me a twenty thousand dollar check.  I learned about equity.  I paid off all my credit cards and said to myself, now what?  My credit score shot up and I just felt that something in my life was meant to change. One evening a short time later, like most people, I was just scrolling through Facebook when I came across an ad for an event.  Flip to Fortune was what it was called. It was a one-night thing at a hotel conference room not far from me.  Skeptical, I decided I’d go check it out.  However, when the night came for the event I was tired and in the back of my mind, I knew they were just going to end up asking for money to learn more so I decided not to go.  That was until I mentioned it to my forever-optimistic daughter, then 24 years old.  She said, “let’s go, I’ll go with you…” and we did.  You’re probably wondering… did they ask for money… yes.  But it was extremely reasonable.  $100 for both of us to attend a three-day workshop on learning to wholesale and flip real estate.  I love to learn so I was all in.  Those three days exposed me to a whole new world. It was the best $100 I ever spent.  Looking back now, it was a preview, an overwhelming preview, of what my life was to become.  Come to find out later I also met a new best friend and business partner during those three days. I decided that day, to dedicate the next year to all things real estate.  I stopped going out, no more shopping, no dinners out, and limited interactions with anyone or anything that would distract or deter my new path.  I ate, slept, and breathed in all things real estate… books, podcasts, youtube videos, meetups; anything and everything I could find.  That all started in March 2017.  Fast forward a little, my daughter decided to go to a landbank meeting.  She can’t even tell you why she did, but she even left work early to attend.  At that meeting, a man with a vision for an education where high school students attended typical high school classes but tailored to real life and get hands-on exposure to trades.  Students would actually renovate houses in the community as part of their curriculum, which in turn revitalized their neighborhoods.  At the end of the program, they become homeowners.  His vision transforms struggling communities from the inside out starting with high school students. It’s like no other school in the country.  She came home telling me that we just had to meet with him and offer any help we could from our newfound real estate family.  My new best friend simply said why haven’t you called yet.  A short time later we all went to meet him to find out how we could help.  We are all Go-Givers (if you don’t know that phrase look for the book).  Long story short I ended up with a job as the linked learning facilitator.  By this time I was knee-deep in real estate and, along with my son and daughter, had begun to flip houses. I was super excited and deathly afraid at the idea of flipping my teaching career like I was now flipping houses (it’s hard to leave your comfort zone). But, like the houses I flip, I was run down and desperate for new life. I got that opportunity as the linked learning facilitator.  I would be teaching Geometry through construction.  I was going to get to show teenagers what I wish I had known back when I was in high school (because I would surely be a billionaire by now if I had). My dream job combined my new love for all things real estate with my passion for teaching.  1dreamjob!  Now, having taught there for four years through the extreme growing pains of a start-up school, I am told that they want to take the program to the next level. The vibrant man that I follow on Instagram will now take what I built and make it better… I hope. He is a man, with a bonafide construction background and my position is basically the whole focus of the school, so here I am.  In 153 days I will receive the last paycheck of my teaching career.  I hope I will always be a part of the school in some capacity because I believe in what they are doing. I will sub for sure.  It’s literally a school of 45 students and growing but finding a sub wasn’t ever easy so there were few days off without burdening fellow teachers.  I look at it this way… God doesn’t choose the qualified, He qualifies the chosen, and my path to the position that was a dream job to me was simply ordered steps.  I put my all into building a curriculum that introduced students to all the trades and witnessed the magic of a power tool in the hands of a student.  I also have a very successful real estate business and I have been torn for a long time because I’m equally passionate about both that and teaching.  This is just God’s way of saying it’s time to retire and pursue my other passion… which my friends and family have been saying to do, but the kids draw me back each year.  There is nothing quite like working in a small school where you know every student because you work with them year after year.  I leave knowing I have built something great and if someone can take it to the next level then so be it - whatever is best for the students!

Yes, I cried while writing that.  Now it’s game on… time to replace a salary.  That’s where this blog comes in.  I am often told that my story is inspirational to people.  My kids and I are currently working on our 10th flip alongside my friend and business partners. I’m often asked, “when do you sleep?” Hence the name of my website.  I’ll tell you that later.  Right now I have 153 days to replace my teaching salary.  I decided to focus on what is already making me a little (and I mean a very little) passive income… Teachers Pay Teachers.  I have been posting lessons there since 2016, but never as a career or true side hustle.  I just wanted to make enough to buy things off there when I needed them. The other day, in between crying spells, I saw a youtube video about a teacher who hit $100K in sales and quit teaching.  So I thought back to how I dove into real estate and how beneficial it was to do that and here I am.  I watched a bunch of different teachers making big $$ off TPT and their tips.  One of which was to start a blog.  I’ve wanted to do that anyway because I want to inspire women to get into real estate and find a way out of the day-to-day and into passive income and generational wealth.  So I will try never to be this long-winded again. I will tell you how I went from not even knowing what equity really meant to owning a quadplex, a tax deed condo that is a very lucrative AirBnB, being a landlord, and investing with my two amazing kids and best friend flipping houses. I will also share that I always have a backup plan.  I’m a nationally board-certified teacher and an adjunct professor so I have no doubt I could get another teaching job, I do doubt that I would ever match the love I had for the job that I have now (ironically the last day of school is also my birthday). Additionally, 2 years ago I got my real estate license and am studying for my home builder license as well.  I say all that to say, ALWAYS have a backup plan!  Now I want to share my life with you in hopes that you will find security even when there really is no such thing.

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