Brennan and I have struggled to have regular date nights, especially during a global pandemic. We believe that it’s so important to keep dating, so when I saw an ad … Continue reading Our First “Crated With Love” Date Night
The No Facebook Experiment
It’s been a long four months. It started in early March with learning that we had lost the two embryos we had transferred in February. Then, just a week later, … Continue reading The No Facebook Experiment
Our family has now been home for eighty-two days. I remember when it was going to be thirty days and that seemed so long. We’ve been living under the assumption … Continue reading Eighty-Two Days
Embracing the Togetherness
I can’t help but reflect and be amazed at how the Lord prepared our family, mostly through our church, to be home for a month. Over the course of the … Continue reading Embracing the Togetherness
What Motivates You?
Today I cleaned my kitchen. It took me several hours as I had to do tasks in short stints as the boys allowed, but it looks SO much better, and … Continue reading What Motivates You?
The common theme of the past six months has been hurdles. Things haven’t been going as smoothly as we would like and we’ve come up against some significant challenges.
- Buying this house came with one obstacle after another and cost more than we anticipated not only to buy it, but to do the necessary renovations (that still aren’t done because we ran out of money). It seems like all of our Dave Ramsey progress was lost and we’re having to start over again in our process to becoming debt-free.
- We drained our savings (and our HSA) to pay for IVF (though MUCH of the cost was donated by generous and amazing people and we are SO very grateful!), and it’s tough to rebuild it.
- We started an AirBnB in the apartment upstairs and have LOVED running it. It has brought joy to us and to the families and single mothers we have been able to serve and bless through this venture. It has also been hugely beneficial financially.
However, two of our neighbors are “uncomfortable” with the idea for ridiculous reasons (they don’t understand AirBnB at all, essentially) and they filed complaints with the township. We were forced to make a decision to either pay $450 and wait three months (and go to two zoning board hearings) to try to be rezoned for this type of use (no guarantee of approval), or give up and just get a tenant (less income, loss of the opportunity to help others enjoy Hershey and run an AirBnB; loss of space to host family and friends and bands (through RYFO.org) upstairs).
Ultimately, we’ve decided to try to find a tenant because some battles aren’t worth fighting. The township needs to modify their rules about AirBnB instead of trying to make it fit into other molds and making it impossible for residents to do. I am proud of my letter to the township supervisors and hope that it will make a difference in the future for property owners to use their property as they choose.
- I haven’t had much time to finish my book proposal or to find an agent, even though my manuscript has been complete (and edited) for six months. I’m struggling to remain positive about it being published, even though I believe that the Lord led me to write it for that purpose.
- I am committed to do many good things, but finding a balance and remaining disciplined has been a challenge.
Even so, it is well with our souls.
It hasn’ t been ALL bad, but the hard things in life tend to overshadow the good; when we focus on the positive we realize that we have had some GREAT things happen:
- We thoroughly enjoyed our trip to California, Oregon, Washington, and ALASKA in June and returned home feeling rejuvenated even though the trip was exhausting. Seeing the beauty of God’s creation and spending treasured time with family was worth every lost minute of sleep.
- We found out that we have THREE embryos (out of the five) that are healthy! Two are not even carriers of Krabbe! The fourth embryo needs to be retested, and the fifth has chromosomal abnormalities that are not survivable. We are thankful for these 3-4 and will hopefully do the first transfer in August.
- Thanks to my dad spending two weeks out here, we’ve nearly completed the basement projects (laundry room/bathroom drywall and paint, etc.). We’re going to be ready for hosting bands and other guests so soon! Since we’re giving up the AirBnB this space will allow us to continue to minister to bands through RYFO – an amazing network of host homes for touring musicians.
- Brennan and I are trying to become much more disciplined than we are currently in every area of our lives. It’s a struggle but we must overcome and become self-disciplined.
Through it all, my heart has remained at peace because I trust the Lord completely and I have absolute faith that this is all happening for a reason. As the popular song states, “Let go my soul and trust in Him, the waves and wind still know His name…” He is still on the throne, He is still in charge, and, most importantly, He still LOVES us. In those moments when I feel worry start to encroach on my peace, I stop and pray and remind myself that He’s got this.
And so we press on, knowing that it will all turn out alright.
The Big Move
I’ve moved far too many times in my life. From Hayward, CA to Red Bluff, CA (and then another move within Red Bluff). From Red Bluff to Azusa (far too … Continue reading The Big Move
A Season of Waiting
It’s hard to believe that it’s October already. September was a blur, filled with many changes and hardly any free time. Now it’s Fall and the temperatures have cooled, the … Continue reading A Season of Waiting
Today our new life begins. A life without Tori. A life with new purpose and priorities. The visitors have stopped, the mail has slowed, the house is quiet. Tori has … Continue reading Day One
Maintaining Your Marriage in the Midst of Suffering
Marriage experts will tell you that it is vitally important to maintain your marriage during the child-raising years because one day it will be just the two of you again. … Continue reading Maintaining Your Marriage in the Midst of Suffering