These past three months have brought a LOT of change to our family. We have spent a lot of energy and time trying to figure out the best way to balance our new schedules. At the beginning of the year, Eli took a new job with 5/3 Bank. He was still processing mortgages, like he did at Chase, but 5/3 was offering better pay. They were creating an entirely new team, and promised that within a couple months, the new employees would be receiving overtime and bonus pay. Well...six months in, we hadn't seen a penny of the promised money. So naturally, Eli was less than content with his job situation. He began looking for work elsewhere, and it was during this process that he felt compelled to go a different direction.
Almost 4 years ago, he started working (VERY part-time) in the merchant services industry. His goal was to eventually turn his one-man business into something bigger. Something that would run itself, leaving him time to spend with family and focus on those things that are most important to him. With much prayer and discussion, we decided it was time for him to devote his full attention and time to his merchant services company, BuckeyePay. He put in his two weeks at 5/3, and by the end of the month, he was working solely on BuckeyePay. '
Whatever hesitation/insecurities we may have had about this decision vanished that first week. At least for me. ;) In a "chance" encounter with a door to door salesman, we found ourselves with an appointment to get a quote on new windows. Windows that, given this new business venture, we could not afford. So we told each other that there was NO WAY we would be purchasing windows. NO. WAY. As it turned out, the owner of the company was the one who came to our appointment, and he had it in HIS mind that (given an out-of-the-ordinary need that HE had) he would NOT be leaving without selling us some windows! After TWO HOURS of negotiations, and pretty darn rock-bottom pricing, we continued to hold our ground. But the owner had one last trick up his sleeve. "What kind of business do you own?" he asked Eli. "Well," Eli replied, "I lower credit card processing rates for businesses much like yours." To which the owner, waving his hand to an empty chair, said, "Sit down. Let's talk." A few minutes later, Eli had landed the biggest account he's ever had. We are getting "free" windows (because the residual pay on this account will cover the monthly payment), and Eli has plenty left over to help grow his business. The Lord has proven to us through this example, and many others, that this is just what we are to be doing at this time.
In addition, we have started a second home-based business (one that does not take me away from my children) that has allowed me to feel much more comfortable with Eli's decision to make this change. We now have two income streams, something we haven't had in 5+ years. Through all of this, I have received a far greater gift than any financial benefits that will come from these two ventures. I have come to understand what Eli has known for quite some time now. Finally, I understand what it takes to achieve financial FREEDOM. It requires a change in your way of THINKING, and in your way of ACTING. It's an exciting thing!! I have never been a "business person." And I have never been one to dream of mansions, expensive cars, and butlers (a maid, maybe, but not a butler. :) ) But I now see what is possible in regards to QUALITY of life. It does not have to be a given that I stay home and raise my children alone. Eli does not have to spend most of his life stuck in a cubicle, working 40+ hours a week to make someone else wealthy...while we constantly worry about trying to save enough for our needs and our future. We DON'T have to worry about having enough to live off of during retirement. I understand now what to do to relieve these common worries. And I am so grateful for that knowledge and understanding. And I am so grateful that the Lord has also blessed us with not one, but TWO vehicles to make this happen.
So while the children have been growing, learning, and changing...so have I. So has Eli. 2013 is half-way over, but it has already been one of the greatest years of our marriage, thanks to these things. And...thanks to another FIVE things. That you can look at...here...
General Conference. The kids enjoyed their Conference Baskets,
filled with activities to keep them engaged.
I took the twins to Chick-fil-A for a "Prince and Princess Night."
Wendy made her own "hat."
Cousins came to visit!
The Wendy Lady.
A new pair of "Promotion Heels!"
We at applesauce. Jack looked like this...
Wendy looked like this...
and Luke looked like this...
Charlie finally learned how to pump!!
I loved all of these kids.
We broke out the sprinkler...
And Wendy broke her crib. :(
(Still not sure how that happened.)
Wendy and Luke sneaked into Liv's room for an impromptu concert and beauty session.
I sold a ton of stuff at the Columbus Mothers of Twins Club sale.
SO much work! But worth it!
I hid in my room in an attempt to escape the chaos...
this wasn't the first time. :/
We met friends at the Zoo!
Jack decided to imitate this sleeping elephant.
I think he nailed it.
Liv took a dance class that incorporated
ballet, tap, and jazz.
(No pictures, but Charlie tried karate while Liv did dance.
The class was 1.5 hours and he was by far the youngest.
He did so well!)
I enjoyed Spring! And my budding apple tree.
Jack learned to us a regular cup...without THROWING it!!
I loved on my kiddos.
We swam in our clothes.
I found some old music I had saved from when I was in Kinderchor.
I think there may be some copyright infringement here,
so kindly look the other way on that.
We took a look at how our lives have changed.
Liv worked on the art of bed-making.
Rolling in the stretch limo.
Luke was (is) in to EVERYTHING. Including, apparently, the computer.
Mother's Day gifts from Charlie and Liv. :)
We had picnics!
Jack grew out of his PJs.
There's been a lot of mud to play in.
Eli is now making presentations like a pro!
We had a date night for Mother's Day. Eli bought me tickets to Les Mis.
More water play!
Liv got a "new" bunk bed in preparation for Wendy transitioning
to a big girl bed. Liv will have the top, and Wendy will have the bottom.
Spring again. I love my peonies. Love. Them.
The triplets really enjoy watching Dago mow the yard.
It's a highlight of their week.
Another Trekkie is born! Which kinda fills me with warm fuzzies. Next Generation was the show I watched with my Dad. He would lay on the couch and I would lean against him, trying so hard to match my rapid breathing to his much slower respiration. Next Generation reminds me of that. My Dad. Breathing. And all that that entails. :)
When Wendy is sad, all I need to do is plop her down next to her big sister
for some snuggle time. Works like a charm.
It had been a while. Poor guy. :(
(This was the beginning of a three week long sickness that would NOT leave our family alone!)
Liv did this.
I had to separate Luke and Wendy from Jack. They wouldn't stop hitting him.
But he thought it looked like fun, so he asked to join them.
Happy Father's Day!
Running a little late for nap time. Oops!
We took a trip to LA to visit family and
attend a conference for that second business of ours...
Enjoying a little breakfast before the flight.
(Just moment before this, Mom called to tell me that Jack has sick again.
We hadn't even left Ohio yet.)
Flying with someone who has motion sickness can be so lonely.
Thank you Dramamine for taking my travel companion.
We swam in this.
There were tiny flecks of gold in the sand and floating in the water!
Dinner on Hollywood Blvd. with our AMAZING team, TLT2!
The next morning, this happened...
(excuse typos. it was 4am)
After several hours, we'd pieced together replacements. Thank you to Shelley and Nathan, Kim Wear and her boys (who also got sick from all this), Jennifer Simcox and her kids (who also got sick from all this), Amy and Russell West, Rachel Bailey, Ulli Simcox, and Crystal Davies. All of whom either baby-sat, provided meals, or helped me make this all work!! It was stressful and tiring...
Another dinner with TLT2 at the ESPN bar and restaurant.
PS. The service was HORRIBLE. Don't go there.
Geared up for the conference to begin!!
Our Senior Vice President asked us to come up to the front to meet her husband. She wanted to introduce him to the parents of "the twins and triplets." We went up just as she was being recognized for her accomplishments, so we got a up-close-and-personal view.
Peter and Liam. This little guy reminds me SO MUCH of Jack! Made me a little homesick.
Somehow this is the only picture I took of family. I'm lame.
After our return to a much rainier Ohio...
I went to see The Sound of Music with some church friends,
and my van broke down on the way home.
Our baby-sitters Shelley and Nathan played a little trick on us one night...
So now I am all caught up. Hopefully I'll get back to this before the end of the year. ;)