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Update, 2017 edition!

How do you come back from a blog break of more than a year?

I’ll tell you: tail between your legs, hand over your eyes in shame, tentatively and awkwardly. And a little clumsily, stretching those muscles you haven’t used in a while like you do after sitting on the floor doing puzzles with your kid for too long. (RIGHT? When did sitting on the floor become something that hurts?)

I’VE MISSED YOU GUYS!!!

And I’m so sorry for the crazy, excessive radio silence. I can explain.

WE MOVED TO FLORIDA!

I know. WHUT.
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It kinda came out of nowhere and wasn’t on our radar. If you’d have told me last January we’d be living in a different state one year later, I would have smacked you in the face and walked away.

(Maybe not a smack… Maybe just a weird look and an awkward attempt to end the conversation, because who goes around predicting things like that?)

We kind of out-of-nowhere had a conversation with some friends about how we all work from home, and why the heck don’t we live near the beach? A month later, we went house-hunting on a whim, and a month after that, we closed on a new place near the water! Our friends joined us too and we spent the next months soaking up the sunshine and wondering why we hadn’t done that years before.
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It completely changed our quality of life. We spent so much time together as a family and virtually eliminated all my “mom guilt” about how fast the years were flying by.
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I thought the summer couldn’t get better, and then fall arrived and winter. We’ve literally had three days of real winter in Florida and I feel like I’m cheating at life. Are you really allowed to just skip winter like this? DO OTHER PEOPLE KNOW YOU’RE ALLOWED TO LIVE HERE?

You guys. They will allow ANYONE to live where’s it’s warm and near the ocean. There’s not even a screening process. You should probably move here too.

And what about our house in Georgia that we’d been working on and blogging about for so many years? Yall, don’t make me get emotional.
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We’ve taken some time to finish the unfinished projects (the master bathroom!) and get it ready to sell. This week, we’re putting it on the market and I’m going to find a way to say goodbye to it like a grown-up who understands we still get to keep the memories even if we don’t have the walls they’re attached to. Ooorrrrr I’ll be a giant mess and will have to be pulled from it kicking and screaming.

I’ll be screening the buyers the way you do if you’re giving away a litter of kittens. “You’ll give it a good home, right? You’ll take good care of it and give it a good long life and LOVE IT JUST LIKE I WOULD?! PROVE IT TO ME.”

It’s going to be an open adoption – we’ll still keep in touch with the house and I’ll still be able to come back and visit and lovingly stroke the walls and cry about how I used to sit RIGHT IN THAT CORNER and nurse my babies and how we celebrated their first birthdays RIGHT ON THIS PATIO. It’s going to be totally normal and everyone will understand.

Our kids keep getting bigger too, even though we specifically asked them not to.
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I started homeschooling them this year, even though I am NOT the endlessly patient, soft-spoken, organized and perfect mom I thought you had to be to homeschool. Turns out normal, impatient, real moms can do it too, and guys, I LOVE IT SO MUCH.

I started reluctantly because it just seemed like we were being called to do it, but I found myself really loving it. We read a lot; we play a lot; we go on field trips and my kids have the freedom to explore what they’re interested in. And there’s nothing more amazing than the feeling I had when Mila learned to read and I realized that I was the one who taught her – ME! It felt like a real-life miracle, not even kidding.
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Soooo that all felt like a LOT to say and I couldn’t figure out how to tell you, so I just… said nothing… Although now that I said it all, I don’t know why it seemed so hard?

I really have missed you guys and feel like there have been so many words bottled up. Things I wanted to say that I couldn’t get out because they were stopped up by the degree of change causing a distance between us. Hopefully you’ll forgive me and we can start fresh, with everything out in the open, yeah?

What about you? Tell me the story of your life the past year. I want to know all the details.



Let's connect

Comments

  1. melissa says:

    So happy for the update-we’re in England this year but frantically scouring Zillow for places in South Florida to buy when my husband retires in a few years. The year in the UK following two years in DC have shown this Southern girl that the further south the better for me! So happy to see you all doing so well!

    • Kelly says:

      Yes! I don’t know how you’re surviving the weather in the UK, but I know it must be such an adventure and your boys are getting an awesome experience. Florida will be glad to have you back!

  2. Welcome to Florida, I live there (here) too! Although, having random F-winter days (there is no winter or fall) has gotten old for me I am so glad you love it. That all sounds super exciting I wish that I could just pack up and move. My news? I got married! And it’s kinda a big deal because once engaged we did it in 6 weeks! I’m glad you’re back and can’t wait to read future posts.

  3. I’m totally jealous! I want to live near the beach so so badly. Always have! I’d miss my skiing but I could fly somewhere to do that for a week right? No need to sit in crappy weather for month at a time. And right now it’s all cold rain anyways. The only problem is that the hubby hasn’t been able to find a comparable job in logistics. BUMMER!
    So so happy for you guys and so cool that you like homeschooling. I don’t think it would be for me. I feel too stupid for that 😉

    • Kelly says:

      Just come stay with me and get your beach fix here! That would be SO fun! TRUST me, if I can do this homeschooling thing, you would be amazing. <3 Miss you, friend!

  4. Darcy says:

    Congratulations! What an exciting move – and you all look so happy! We had a baby, my husband started a new job (I kept my old one – boring, lol) and we’re about to close on our first house….and I’m expecting our second baby. :) Lots of change – but that makes life exciting!

    • Kelly says:

      Wow! You have been SO busy. CONGRATULATIONS!! And YAY for the new house! Is there anything better than the promise of a brand new place to make your own?!

  5. kristina says:

    i am so glad you posted something. i have been thinking about you because i bought a condo at the beach (teeny tiny) and am trying to be creative and budget conscious in totally redoing it. i’d think to myself, i wish i knew her to help me and where the heck is she? happy you’re at the beach! looking forward to future posts and ideas 😊

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you and congrats on the condo! Honestly I think tiny spaces are the most fun to decorate. You can be bolder because it’s all smaller doses, and you can choose just a few fancy things and make a huge difference. Have fun decorating and beachin’! :)

  6. Tava Clark says:

    KELLY!!! Oh my gosh, I am SO glad you are back!!!!! 😍

    I was just showing your blog to my mother yesterday, telling her how I’ve been wondering where you have been and how I miss your projects. (I was also gushing about your closet remodel, and may have also been gushing about the laundry room remodel, and the home office, and – well you get the idea.)

    Pretty please tell me you bought another fixer upper! My husband and I bought a house about a year ago, and I would love get some new inspiration.

    Seriously, I can’t even collect all my thoughts to write down because I am so darn excited that you are BACK!

    • Kelly says:

      <3 <3 <3 THANK YOU!! We bought a house that is mostly still empty because I can’t figure out what I want to do. :) I’m taking this “slow decorating” thing VERY seriously. Ha!

  7. Saffy says:

    Very excited to see you back! and woohoo to Flordia. I know what you mean about life just happening – Sept 2013 my husband my husband came over to Canada (from England) on a business trip by Christmas the same year we were all there. It’s been a busy year for us – new baby and sold our English house, getting ready to make Canada our permanent home now. Can’t wait to see what you’ve been up to in more detail

    • Kelly says:

      That is awesome!! Congrats on the round-the-globe move, the new baby (<3 <3!!) and the new home! So much excitement for one year!

  8. Kelly Davis says:

    Congrats on the move! Sounds like a great change for you all! It’s hard to end your time with a home, but all things must come to an end. I’m hoping you’ll be back to blogging permanently here again!

  9. Branalyn says:

    Wow! I’m so excited you are back! What a crazy ride! Let’s see. I have to go back further. 2015 started out with us having a 2 mo foster baby. He had come to us at 9 days old. I went back to teach one more semester of school. In January, Early Childhood Intervention came out to test my child, as they do all foster babies. After I answered a few questions using words and phrases like “meet at midline”, they said “what do you do?” And said they had an opening in our area and they thought I should consider applying. I scoffed. Then, through a series of events, I did. And so I finishes the school year while training for the new job and went to being a 2 day a week Early Intervention Specialist/Service Coordinator and SAHM the rest of the time. We used my last school check to buy a stash of cloth diapers and haven’t looked back. I wanted to before, but it was tough teaching an hour from home and getting anything done and my husband had taken on enough. Your post forever ago was part of my push to just do it!
    In October 2015, my husband was asked to resign from the church as a youth minister because the oil field had tanked and they couldn’t pay us. They allowed us to stay in the parsonage so we didn’t have to move as foster parents and he started his own business, Dailey Woodworks.
    In November 2015, parental rights were terminated and we moved toward adoption but the government, it is slow. So 2016 started with my husband doing his own business, me working part time, and a 1 yo who would be officially ours but we were waiting for that to happen.
    In April 2016, I trained someone new to take over my job.
    In May 2016, we finally were able to finalize the adoption and two days later, we moved! 8 hours across Texas, back to family. My husband is still doing his business and it has built back up nicely. I spent a few months settling and then began working for my now-local ECI doing the same thing 2 days a week. The baby who is now 2 goes to MDO while I work. And we are in the process to become foster parents again and bring a new baby into the family.
    Whew.

    • Kelly says:

      Oh that is such an amazing story! You are basically living my exact dream – adopting babies out of foster care. We’re supposed to start foster classes here soon. Congratulations on the new business and making lemonade! I love your story!

      • Branalyn says:

        Fostering a rough gig and certainly not where we thought we would be right now. But it is infinitely worth it! I wish you well getting started!

  10. Jessica Crawford says:

    Ok I’m disproportionately excited to see an update from you. Selling your house makes me vicariously sad, but how cool that you get to have all these new warm-weather adventures. My year has been crazy. Started a new job. Spend half of my time dog-sitting at my parents’ house because my sister was diagnosed with leukemia in a November and one of those things nobody ever talks about with cancer is, who takes care of the family pets while the patient and caregivers are in the hospital or at appointments!
    I spend those long hours day dreaming about my own project house someday. I hope you continue blogging as you’re able, we missed you!

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you so much! I hope your sister is recovering well! She’s so lucky to have someone to love on her pup for her. <3 <3

      • Jessica Crawford says:

        Thank you! She is doing well. Came home from the cancer hospital today. She is about six weeks from readmittance for her bone marrow transplant. Her puppy and my parents’ two puppies are happy to have her home.

  11. Linsey says:

    Omg how I have missed ur blog posts! I love ur writing style! I feel like I’m ur beastie and we’re just chatting! Well, after a few years.. we finally had the baby of our dreams! Little Parker is 5 months old and seriously the best thing that has ever happened to me! And.. BECAUSE of you.. we cloth diaper too! I remember reading ur post about them and thinking how cool they were! So thank you soo much! I can’t wait to read more!!

    • Kelly says:

      Oh my goodness – a five month old!! That is the BEST! You’re just at the beginning of the unimaginable fun and joy to come as he gets bigger and even more interactive. So happy for you guys!!

  12. Kendra says:

    I was so happy to see your new post tonight! I’ve been a silent follower and lover of your blog for years, and I hope you’ll continue now that you’re back :-). I homeschool my kiddos too and I loooove it. I would love to hear more about your experiences with it, as well as more amazing house project inspiration.

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you! I feel like a total newbie with the homeschooling, but I LOVE the flexibility and seeing my kids’ relationships with each other just grow with all their time together. What a gift to be able to do it!

  13. Heidi says:

    Lol… normal, impatient moms do it too. So true! I sort of fell into homeschooling after a move where we weren’t sure where we’d ultimately end up, and I ended up loving it, and so do the kids, most of the time. We are on year 3 of it now. And I’m definitely a normal, impatient, and at times even yelly, mom. I’m glad you are all enjoying life! I started reading your blog pretty much after you stopped writing it, haha, but I read through most of the archives and loved it all. I’d be super thrilled if you did actually start blogging more again, but understand it too if you don’t.

  14. Kimberly says:

    Another homeschooling mom in Florida who also went MIA on my blog for over a year. Welcome to Florida! I’m in St Petersburg. I’m here if you ever need another homeschooling mom to chat with!

  15. Kimberly says:

    You’re baaaack!! I just love your posts– PLEASE keep ’em comin’! I want to hear more about everything! Where in FL? What homeschool curriculum? Any new house projects at your new crib?? So jealous you can go to the beach all the time!

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you SO much! I totally want to dig into all that stuff! So far the decorating is… er… SLOW. :) But I do have some updates to talk about once I can get my camera fired up!

  16. alexis says:

    I’m in the Daytona area, welcome!

  17. Bliss says:

    All I need to know is if you remembered a room for me in the new house.

  18. Caroline says:

    1. Love your update! We are also starting to homeschool next year.
    2. I’d selfishly like to ask you to hold off selling your home for ONE YEAR, because at that point we’ll be ready to buy. We are in Atlanta and need to sell our first house before we can make a move- just sayin’ 😉

  19. Gretchen says:

    Hey–congratulations!!!! Going somewhere hotter and more humid than GA is exactly the opposite of what I would do if I could move anywhere, but Dave would be ALL OVER IT. I’m not going to tell him you moved, so he won’t try to talk me into it ;). We’ve actually been in Florida twice during the past month….if we’d known you were there, we could have come and said hi and crashed a beach visit!

  20. Alexandra says:

    Welcome to Florida :)

  21. Lacy says:

    Kelly!! I have found myself sporadically checking your blog over the past year hoping, just hoping, that you will post something…anything. Sometimes I just find a random old post of yours to read and pretend it is new:) I swear the other day I told myself I should just stop checking so I won’t be so let down and then I get an email saying there is a new post! Yippee!! HA!!! I’m not a stalker…just love your inspirational writing and blog. So happy your family is doing well and as always, take whatever time you need…we will be here waiting with open arms!

    • Kelly says:

      Oh this totally makes my day. Thank you SO much for the kind words and encouragement. I’m so excited to get back into the swing of things!

  22. Missy says:

    Oh my! I thought I was reading our 2014 story!! Except minus the kids (we are new-ish empty nesters). We spent YEARS (24 to be exact) redoing our house in Texas – and our entire lives growing up there. I have said out loud, “If you told me only 2 months before we moved that we would be living in Florida, I would have thought you were crazy!” But, we did it, and WOW! was it a tiring and crazy time. God totally sustained us! Wonder what region you are in? We are in Navarre, and 2.5 miles from the incredible beach. So beautiful :))

    • Kelly says:

      That’s crazy! Totally similar story, and we are in the panhandle too. I hope you guys are loving it as much as we are!

  23. Cathy says:

    Good for you moving to the beach! I also applaud your decision to homeschool. We can make choices that change lives for the better!

  24. Busayo says:

    Whaaaat!!! Are you really back??? Don’t play with my heart. PS, I hope your kids know that they HAVE to attend the University of Florida for college. 😂

    • Kelly says:

      No way – we love them too much to let them become Gators. That’s our only family rule. 😉 You’re talking to two UGA grads here! hahaha!

  25. Courtney says:

    Yay! You’re back! I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve come to your page thinking, “Did I miss something?!” How exciting to have made a big move! And homeschooling- I’m there too! We had NO intention to ever homeschool, but here I am doing it and loving it! Crazy how God works!
    I started following your blog when we bought what was supposed to be our forever house in 2013. Between welcoming a new baby, my husband getting laid off but thankfully finding a new job he loves, and a few other life changes, we decided to put it on the market. Last month we accepted an offer on said house and are downsizing significantly to something hopefully more affordable. I’m excited to tackle some new DIY projects, but am a little scared too!

    • Kelly says:

      Wow, you guys have some major changes going on! Sounds like a really smart move though, and I’m sure you’ll love the peace that comes with having less to take care of and less house to manage. So fun to hear from other reluctant homeschool mamas too! :)

  26. Ann says:

    Well I thought so…but I didn’t want to be nosy and ask! I was pretty sure you moved and am happy to know that all is well. I am so proud of you and Andy…and all you have accomplished…but you know that. So I’ll just say welcome back and I hope it’s not another year before we hear from you again! XOXO ~Ann

  27. shannon says:

    YAY YOU’RE BACK! So exciting!!!!

    Congrats on the move to FL! We just moved from Denver to Philadelphia for my husband’s job. Not so much with the warm weather but we are much closer to the beach :)

  28. Debbie says:

    So glad to see you back! What fun memories you will be making at the beach! “Cant wait to see your new house and it’s projects!

  29. Amy says:

    Welcome back! Glad to hear you aren’t living your life around your blog :) Sounds like you have life pretty well nailed. Feel free to quit the guilt trip around not posting, but you can feel a little guilty about your sunshine beach perfection when you think about me in the middle of aNOTHer winter storm D-: You all are the poster family for Dave Ramsey btw. So amazing what you’ve done!

  30. katherine says:

    thank you for these words. our family is in the very beginning stages of moving cross-country and i’m having every question/doubt/anxiety in the book which is insane because i’ve been unhappy where we’re at for the last 12 years. but it’s finally time to make the change. your comment about quality of life really resonated with me and i have such high hopes for our (and selfishly my) new life after the move.

    • Kelly says:

      Totally understand. It’s so stressful to move and deal with the unknown. We loved having a “reset” and changing our habits with the move. I hope you guys find the same thing once you’re all settled!

  31. Tamara Anderson says:

    I am so happy you’re back!!!
    I kept checking thinking i was no longer subscribed, lol.
    Congrats on your move and all the wonderful family time, you deserve time off and time to focus on family and refocus life goals!!!

  32. Diva Kreszl says:

    Thank you for sharing your story and this lovely post! Sounds like you are living the dream with all the reality that entails. I am an empty nester and a grandma and often wish to live in a sunny warm climate near the beach but I am afraid I would miss being near my grands too much. Your words remind us that life happens and never say never, surprises are around every corner! Best wishes to you and your beautiful family and kudos to you for following your dream!

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you so much! I totally agree that time with your grandkids beats the beach, as great as it is. They’re lucky to have you nearby!

  33. Melissa says:

    I’ve missed you so much!! Congratulations on the move to Florida – you all look so wonderfully happy! 2016 was a rough year for us with some family issues, but it ended on a high note for the holidays and 2017 has started off happy and with lots of promise and hope for the future!! I’m so glad you’re back and hope you will continue to share with all of us. I love to read your posts, on any and all topics, and always feel like we are such good friends even though we’ve never actually met (is that weird? please say it isn’t…). So welcome back! So glad to see you! xoxo

  34. Arlene says:

    I can’t believe you want comments from me. I mean, you don’t even know me, but you asked so nicely that I felt like I had to be polite and tell you what’s happened here in the past year.
    We moved three times! We were preparing to buy or build our own house, so we moved a couple of times to have a good place to stay while we worked on that. We sold our three rentals and pooled all our money and bought a nice house near where we used to live, which was a huge surprise. Things were going great until December when a grandson, 17 years old, was killed in a tragic fire.
    So the year was stressful, exciting, and then sad. I was glad the year finally ended, but looking back now, I can see lots of good things happened, too. So life is good.

    • Kelly says:

      Wow – you guys have been through so much. I’m so sorry to hear about your grandson. I can’t even imagine how difficult that must have been, and must still be. Praying for your family!

  35. Angela S says:

    Yay! Kelly’s back! I’m so happy to see you again!
    2016 turned my big kids into a 3rd grader & a kindergartener. Time is starting to speed up. My little guy is still in preschool.
    I started working the wellness business of Young Living Essential Oils after using them for 2 years. It’s slow & steady, but filled with hope!
    Congratulations on your move & good luck with selling your GA home!

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you and congrats on the new business! I’ve used YL quite a bit! Gosh isn’t time speeding up way too much?! I love these early elementary ages and wish they’d stay this way forever!

  36. Rebecca says:

    Wow! It’s so good to hear from you. I’ve been thinking about you and ever so often I’d pop in to your blog to see if you had posted something and I just didn’t get the email which for some strange reason has been happening with a few other blogs that I follow. Anyway, I wouldn’t see any new posts so I just figured you had decided to quit blogging. Congratulations on the move and I hope to hear more from you soon.

  37. wow! you can just tell the difference this has made for you in that last picture. you’re beaming! enjoy your new life/home/lifestyle. but don’t you miss the season change? i looove fall, like with leaves and color changing, and honest to goodness boot needing and scarf wearing, and could never leave it.
    b

    • Kelly says:

      I do love me some autumn – can’t fight you there! It’s probably the ONE big tradeoff I’ve missed. But it’s definitely worth it for that “ahhhh” feeling I get everytime I get toes in the sand!

  38. Allison says:

    Yay! Please be back! One of few blogs I read.

    I’m from Ga and moved to Myrtle Beach a few years ago and I totally get the appeal. My husband grew up here and I’m always telling him “I can’t believe this is your childhood! You don’t understand!!”

    We just had a baby and I’m stoked to raise her here!

    • Kelly says:

      So true! I’m always trying to get my kids to understand that it’s NOT NORMAL to be able to live where people vacation. :) CONGRATS on the new baby!! How exciting!!

  39. Mickie says:

    Hey, glad you are back!!! Iwas looking through my pinterest boards and saw a few of your posts so I had went to your site to see if I had missed an update. I loved the things you blogged about. My past year and a half has been hard and busy. My mom was diagnosed with cancer and lived 3 hours away. We had 6 months with her. During this time my daughter got engaged so I hit the the trail in a mad dash at that point getting the wedding together. It as a lot of DIY so we could have a nice wedding for as little money as possible. It was a beautiful wedding, a very HOT day and was on my mom’s birthday. So it has been a busy year for me. Now that I am an empty nester, I plan to remodel. Bring on the new projects for your new house! Enjoy the growing up years of your kids. They fly by. Glad you are back!!

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you so much! I’m so sorry to hear about your mom, but what a beautiful gift and picture to have your daughter’s wedding on her birthday. I’m sure that meant more than words can express to her and is something your daughter will never forget too!

  40. Amy says:

    This is Great!! You missed us but We missed you even more! Please stay just the way you are and your blog happy and fun and making us all laugh! That’s why we miss you, and your great remodels too hehe. In the past 18 months I’ve gotten married 😀 , Lost my mom :( , and moved from NY to PA to a slower, calmer happier life! I’m so happy you’re home schooling your kids and they’re going to be so much better off for it! Here’s wishing you much love, much happiness and tons of laughter in your new home! I want to just take this time to thank you for all the times you made me smile, laugh and actually so hard sometimes I spit my coffee all over the computer screen. Can’t wait to see more of your wonderful posts, and so glad you’re all Happy and Healthy!! God Bless!

    • Kelly says:

      Thank you so much!! <3 <3 This totally made me smile. I’m so sorry to hear about your mama. I know that must be gut-wrenching! But congratulations on the marriage and enjoy these honeymoon days. (They do NOT have to end!! 11 years so far for us and he is still my favorite.) God bless!!

  41. Lynn says:

    HI!! Hi, hi, hi hi!
    I was beginning to think I was going to have to look for you on Jordan’s Shore. Your photos are great! Looks like the Destin area?
    Still keeping our 6 woofies and 4 kittehs. Trying to do updates to the house as I can, but I’m either working (no time), or unemployed (no monies).
    SO glad you are well.
    Sincerely,
    Lynn

  42. Debbi says:

    Congrats on your move and welcome back! Looking forward to reading your future updates! Enjoy “winter!”

  43. Theda says:

    I was so glad to see your email in my inbox! I wondered what happen to you. Congratulations on your move to Florida. The beach photos are beautiful, they look like our beaches (I live in FL.)

  44. I’m so glad your back! Congrats on moving to my home state – I love it here! Where in Florida did you end up? It would be great to have a local blog buddy! In the past year, we’ve finalized the adoption of our two girls, we just bought a house and are preparing it to move into at the end of the school year, and we are busy getting this house ready to sell. After reading all the other comments, it’s nice to see I’m not the only one with a crazy year behind me, and ahead too!

    • Kelly says:

      Wow, that is amazing! We absolutely want to adopt so I love to hear from other adoptive mamas. We are in the panhandle area. Best of luck with the move amongst all the other craziness! Sounds like a busy but awesome year ahead!

  45. Jen says:

    Well, I was just looking at my bookmarks the other day and thinking, “I should really delete that one. She must be doing something different. ” In the end, I didn’t delete it because I’m totally going to make those pinwheels for my daughter’s bedroom. Someday. After I paint the windows…recover the sofa…sew comforter covers for my sons… This year I was telling my mother that I was so far behind on everything (“new” house, homeschooling, etc.) and she reminded me to take it easy on myself, it “was a baby year”. Literally, for us! We all need to take temporary breaks from things we enjoy doing so that we can do the more important things. Glad all is well with you and your family. :)

    • Kelly says:

      So true! There are definitely “seasons” when you have to just give yourself some grace and get through it all the best you can. “Baby years” are the craziest of them all! Hope everyone is doing well there!

  46. mary billman says:

    Welcome to the Sunshine State. You truly have arrived in Paradise.
    I live in West Palm Beach, actually born and raised here. So I guess you’d call me a native.
    Glad you’re “back in the saddle” and filled us in on the mystery of your whereabouts.
    PS don’t feed the seagulls, they will poop on you.

  47. Janice says:

    Great news, your back. I’ve been going thru the projects looking for new ideas. Change is definitely in the wind for me. Grand babies are growing, kids still getting married, boys will be boys. Although I am in quiet little corner of the world, I’m itching to make some changes. Yeppers diving in is just how.

  48. Christina says:

    I grew up by the ocean and now I miss it so much! I just started homeschooling this year too. I’d love to hear more about your plans in that respect.

  49. TucsonPatty says:

    I’m so happy to see you back. I also couldn’t believe my eyes or email telling me I had a new post from you. I have missed seeing and reading your posts, but I know how life is, and you just have to live it how it comes. Looking forward to more blog. Congratulations on finding your happy place! Good luck with the fostering dream! I always wanted to do that, and never got around to it. Love to you all.

  50. Stefanie says:

    I’m so glad to see that you’re back!! I look forward to hearing about all the fun beach adventures!! We moved to live on the water just over a year ago ourselves.. so I completely get what you mean. Enjoy and let the water work its magic!!

  51. Abby H says:

    I was excited to see your new post appear in my Feedly feed! I’m glad you and your family are doing so well. As a home school graduate, I think perfectly patient and organized home school parents are an urban legend.

    In the past year, my husband got a new job so we have been evaluating, establishing, and re-evaluating our boundaries. We also started the home study paperwork for a domestic infant adoption – our first little one! Boy, is the paperwork detailed and tedious sometimes.

  52. Bethany R. says:

    Welcome back, and welcome to FL! I couldn’t imagine living elsewhere myself! I’m centrally located between Tampa and Orlando, so get the best of both worlds (beaches and art and culture on one side + Mouse World on the other)! I cannot wait to see your new digs; your blog was such an inspiration as I DIY’d my house a couple years ago. I fell off the radar last year as well, also getting that house ready to sell, but was getting divorced (no sorries please, it was good for both of us). So now I’m on my own for the first time in my life and LOVING IT! Thinking of moving closer to the beach soon too. Lots of unknowns ahead and it’s very exciting for me :)
    Love and peace in 2017 and beyond!

  53. Nina McClure says:

    THIS IS THE BEST NEWS EVER!!!! Soooooo you don’t know me yet, because I found your blog right before your last post. But it was basically love at first sight and I read every SINGLE post over a few days because I have never so related to a blogger in my life! I have never coveted someone’s home so much in my life!!! Ha :) But welcome back to the blogging world! I can’t wait to follow along :) I’m a recently married, foster parent recruiter/trainer from Kentucky

  54. Danielle Ferretti says:

    OMGOMGOMGOMG I am SOOOOOOOOOOOO excited you are back ! Hoping for tons of posts from you. Where in Florida are you ? I am down South around Fort Lauderdale. Your beaches look so much nicer than ours ! :)

  55. Megan says:

    SHUT YOUR FACE! I’m so glad to hear from you! Please please please don’t wait another year for your next blog.

    For us, 2016 was the year of adulting. My husband and I both turned 35, got life insurance, celebrated our 10th anniversary, got our foster care license, became board members of our favorite non-profit, AND I started drinking coffee. There’s no turning back, we’re legit adults now! So far this year, I’ve continued on with the grown-up theme by buying my first pair of actual pajamas…not just leftover clothes that I sleep in. We already have a (mini)minivan and a Costco membership, so I’m trying to plot our next steps–a house phone? Clarks shoes? Mall walking? SO many options!

  56. Anastasiya says:

    We recently bought a house in Sarasota, FL and I found your blog to make curtains for it. I enjoyed your blog so much that I started reading it regularly. We will be moving to our new place this summer from South Florida. For years we lived in Kentucky where my husband is from, I am from Russia, but we both love Florida. We are moving because of better schools in Sarasota as compared to Miami. Where did you guys moved to?

    • JanieBugg says:

      Hi l am so glad every thing worked out for you.You all look so happy.
      Keep up the good work home schooling your children well done.

  57. Geraldine says:

    Glad to see you back :-) I should be thinking about moving closer to the beach too 😉 But I just bought my first appartment in Lyon (France), which is close enough to the moutains to be real nice and I am tremendously excited to start my own renovation and decoration!

  58. As one who lives by the ocean in Virginia, I can attest to the fact that living by the water is awesome. We get moderate winters and I would miss them if I lived in Florida.

  59. Marjorie says:

    Welcome to Florida!!! Glad to see that everything is going great for you all. I’m actually about to start a blog (AHHHHHH) AND SCARED to…. lol Just wanted you to know, you’re one of my inspirations. Glad that you’re back!

  60. Tana says:

    You cannot mention that you updated the master bath and leave us hanging like that … :)

  61. Fox says:

    How exciting to have made a big move! And homeschooling- I’m there too! We had NO intention to ever homeschool, but here I am doing it and loving it!

  62. anna says:

    Thankyou for sharing your story. I can imagine it to be a huge decision to pick up and move abroad but i hear it is a great thing to bring children up near a beach. Instead of commuting to school in the rain and breathing in petrol fumes, they will learn to swim and breathe fresh air and grow. I think you have made a wonderful decision and good luck.

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