Share Our Lives: Jobs I've Had

I am so glad you are joining us for our first Share Our Lives link up of 2024. 

Since I did a basic introduction about myself last January (here), for this month's link up I'm going to focus on the various jobs I have had.  I had a tough time writing this post mainly because while I can remember all the jobs I've had I am a bit fuzzy about the timeline and the exact order of jobs... but I did my best and I THINK I have everything mostly right. 


I had a few babysitting jobs around the neighborhood when I was a teenager (and possibly even a pre-teen).  I don't think I was the greatest babysitter since I didn't have a whole lot of patience BUT I always helped clean up, organize, and wash counters, tables, etc.  I can remember doing baby sitting jobs with some of my best friends and feeding bottles to babies, making macaroni and cheese on the stove for slightly older kids.  Looking back on it we had to be pretty young since none of us could drive. I think our going rate was $5 an hour and we were thrilled to do it! 

Once I got a bit older I got a job working at Brook's Pharmacy-- this was a smaller chain of pharmacy stores with about 300+ stores scattered round New England and into New York.  My best friend's mother was the manager at our local store that was just a few block from my house.  I started out working register (which I HATED!) and she soon moved me onto taking care of the make up wall.  I was responsible for keeping it organized, order products, and making sure we always had 2-3 of each item on display.  I was also put in charge of recalls and things like that and since I can have a near photographic memory at time I was really great at my job.  I used to wear a lot of makeup back then too so I enjoyed it and seeing all the products and new colors.  I only worked 2 days a week ordering and putting up stock and the occasional holiday or weekend night on register; it was perfect for me since I was involved in all sorts of after school curricular activities. 

Sometime around college I began working at Commerce Insurance in their day care. My sister was working there and suggested I apply when they had a few openings. I didn't think I'd like it but I ended up loving it.  Since they were willing to work around my class schedule (I commuted) I was hired on as a floater and worked in various rooms mostly with the pre-school and oldest toddler ages and rarely with my sister (which was just fine; she liked younger toddler but they were not my favorite age).  In fact I liked working with preschool ages so much that once I graduated with my bachelor's in psychology I went back to get my masters and teaching degree in early childhood education. My husband and I got engage around this time and I can remember so many other ladies I worked with all planning their weddings too (which gave me some good ideas on my own). 

Around the time I was working on my master's degree, I realized it would be great to get some experience working in the schools.  I started out as a substitute for various schools in our area but by the 2nd week of school had been hired on full time by the Thompson Public School system to be a permanent floating substitute for their elementary school.  I worked with all ages and stages from Pre-K through grade 4 including various special ed. classes for a couple of years. They were awesome about finding me coverage on the days I needed to leave a bit early to make it to my night school classes.  I had a few long term sub positions over the years which meant I did everything a classroom teacher did (plan lessons, hold parent/teacher conferences, write up report cards, etc). It was great experience and I loved that I knew every single kid and staff member by name in the whole school. 

I made the mistake of only applying to 2 schools when I graduated thinking I was a shoo in to get hired where I had been working (not really realizing that my master's degree required our town to hire me at a higher rate they probably couldn't afford!).  And I didn't get hired.  I wasn't sure what I was going to do for a job that year but my sister had since moved day cares and had a vacancy at her day care. She suggested I apply.  I was hired and we spent that year working together in the infant room. It was so much fun!  I loved working with my sister each day and we had some really cute babies to take care of.

By this time my husband and I were nearly finished building our house and talking of starting a family so I quit my job to paint and lay flooring and get all the house details settled. I didn't bother going back to work once I realized I was pregnant because I knew I would want to quit and stay home with my boys when they were little. 

I didn't get another job outside the home until the private school my oldest son was attending (for kindergarten) was in dire need of teachers. I applied to be a long term sub for the 3rd grade teacher and put my youngest in daycare (my middle son was in preschool).  I had a great year and loved those kids.  A class of just 11 was a dream!  I was hired on to be the librarian the following year and had lots of lesson plans and ideas floating around. Sadly the school was closed down by our diocese less than a week before school started.  We pivoted to put our oldest in public school and since they honored our teaching contracts I got paid to stay home for a year.  

The next year my oldest 2 were in our public school and my youngest was in preschool (at a different catholic school with the same teacher my oldest two had had!) so I subbed at the public school on the 2-3 days a week Evan was in school.  It was fun seeing all the teachers and staff (and the changes and new building!) since I had last left... but we weren't loving public school life. By that June I had decided to give homeschooling a try and I let my teaching certification lapse and pulled all 3 boys out of school.

That has been my only job for the last few years; it was a big job but it was the best move ever for our family!

I hope you'll join us next month when we look at how we met our significant other or our best friend



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Comments

  1. I never knew that you taught professionally. I loved learning that about you!

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  2. I haven’t worked since I’ve had kids either, because my husband always wanted to me to be a stay at home mom. No complaints from me - I love being a stay at home mom! And since Zoey is still 1, I have a looong time left.

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    1. Funny enough my husband and mother in law fought me on staying home; they really thought I'd get bored and hate it. I'm so glad I got to experience it all though.

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  3. That was fun to read! Thanks for sharing it with us!

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  4. I did lots of babysitting as a teenager as well. I’m not sure if I even made five dollars an hour, lol! Then my next three jobs were all at the mall, imagine that and of course clothing stores although the first was in a men’s clothing store, ha ha! This was so much fun!

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    1. I think we were paid $5/ hour... and usually that was me and friend working together to babysit! I knew enough that working in retail would be awful for me and I'd spend my whole paycheck there.

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  5. I'm a little behind as I haven't written my post yet! But I think I've written about this before, so I should have it ready soon!

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    1. I just realized I forgot a job; I worked at a consignment shop for a year or two during college too!

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  6. So fun to read! I am not surprised that you were a teacher- I am sure you "slayed" that job as the kids would say :)

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  7. I always thought I wanted to be a teacher, but somehow my dad pushed me into public accounting and I hated being a CPA. In high school I loved babysitting and I worked at Justice which used to be Limited Too. I was very good at folding the clothes!

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    1. I avoided retail work or food work since I knew it would test my self- control. :)

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  8. I liked reading all of this. How fun to have worked in the makeup department at the pharmacy!

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  9. That pharmacy sounded like a fun job! (The makeup part, that is!)

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  10. Thanks for sharing.. it was fun to learn a bit more about you.

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  11. So fun learning more about you! That's great you are homeschooling and using your teaching certification. I was homeschooled until 8th grade :)

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    1. I don't think I realized that about you; how fun!

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  12. Loved reading more about you. I give all the moms who do homeschooling so much credit. I dont have the patience for it.

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    1. I never thought I would either and boy did we have some pretty ugly days in the mix; luckily the good days outweighed the bad.

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  13. This looks like fun! Loved your stories.

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  14. What a fun post and link up! I don't think I knew that you had taught as a career. Love learning more about our friends here!

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  15. I think teaching is the absolute best career in the world no matter where you do it! Thanks for sharing this glimpse into your life, Joanne!

    https://marshainthemiddle.com/

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  16. I loved reading about all your jobs, Joanne. I was a babysitter way bavk when, and did various jobs, and was a teacher before my four kids were born.
    Happy New Year to you and your family!

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  17. How fun to look back. I thought every girl babysat when they were young.
    XOXO
    Jodie

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  18. This was so interesting!! I loved hearing your story and journey to homeschooling. That pharmacy job sounded fun too!

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  19. It sounds like the pharmacy job was perfect for you at the time and I had no idea you used to be a teacher.

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  20. I'd say painting and laying flooring was a job in itself! One day, hopefully soon, i'll be able to join you in this. I like the idea of it.

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  21. Such a fun series, I'm excited to join! Love to learn more about you.

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  22. Working with your sister sounds like lots of fun! I'm sure those are great memories. I also love that you homeschool your kids. That's one of the things I think I would have done differently during my parenting journey.

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    1. It was a lot of fun to work with my sister; it definitely brought us closer together.

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  23. How fun to work with your sister! Sounds like all your employers were very good to work for and that's quite a feat! I agree with you that homeschooling is such an important job, and so rewarding!

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    1. Yes, I really did luck out with some wonderful employers!

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  24. Such a fun post! It was cool getting to know you better. I bet homeschooling your boys has been your most rewarding job of all of them! I can't imagine how much must go into it! I'm always in awe of moms who homeschool. Y'all are rockstars!

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  25. I loved reading about your job journey. You would have been perfect for the library...but obviously things worked out how they are supposed to. I think it's amazing that you've been able to home school your boys!

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