This is my little space on the internet where I wear my heart on my sleeve, where I keep it real and above all, where I hope to encourage others. I share my life with you, not because I think I’m awesome, but because I believe that life is meant to be shared. And maybe, just maybe, God will use my story, experiences and randomness to encourage you in your life.
It seems like just yesterday we were moving into our “dream home”. You know the story; the moment I stepped in the backyard and saw the olive tree, I knew it was meant for us. That was almost two years ago. In that time, this home has blessed us in countless ways. It was here that Beneath the Olive Tree was born. Here that we hosted countless gatherings with dear friends. Here that we found out about our miracle baby. Here that we brought her home for the first time. And it was good. But now it’s time for a new adventure for our family. We have decided to downsize and we’re moving to Gilbert!
If you’ve followed the blog for long, you know we are Dave Ramsey fans. His book The Total Money Makeover changed my whole view of money and gave me the kick in the pants I needed to get on board to becoming debt free. In 2014, after two years of sacrifice and prioritizing, we paid off the last of our $65,000 of debt. It felt SO good. His motto is “live like no one else so later you can live like no one else”. Basically, make sacrifices now that will pay off in the future. That’s hard to do, am I right? We love instant gratification. We want things and we want them NOW! And while this house has been such a blessing, we started wondering what it would look like to “live like no one else” in our house choice. Most people, when adding to their family, think about upgrading. How can we get more space? Or how can we best utilize the space we have? But, what would it look like if we downsized?? After much discussion, we decided that what we will lose in space, we will gain in freedom. So, we are going from a family of three + two dogs on a third of an acre (aka huge yard for AZ), to a family of four + two dogs to a “patio home” (aka about the smallest yard you can get in AZ). And so begins the journey of living like no one else!
I started my business back in 2009 when it was just Joe and I. The money I made then was never something we needed, which allowed me to work from a place of freedom and service rather than necessity. I was able to thrive because there wasn’t any pressure to make money; rather just do what I love and love people. As our family grew, so did our expenses. Add in a bigger house and a bigger yard, and soon my business was something I had to do rather than something I did simply because I love it.
I never want to be a slave to my job. I never want to see my clients as people I have to serve, rather people I get to serve. Both in photography and holy yoga, I want to give of my gifts and talents from a genuine place and cutting expenses will allow me to do that.
Also, I want to have the freedom to spend as much time with my precious girls as I want. They grow so quickly. I want the freedom to say no to a job in order to spend an extended weekend as a family. I want the freedom to take on as much or as little work as best suits our family. So, as much as I love this house, I love the freedom that will come from downsizing even more!
Joe has supported my MANY dreams from day one. One of the things Joe has dreamt of since I first met him was owning income properties. I was able to see that dream come true with our first rental property, but I always knew that he would love to have another. We are slowly making his dream a reality.
This next house will not be our forever home, rather a temporary home while we save money and eventually turn it into a rental. And maybe, just maybe, he will convince me to do it one more time before settling in our “forever” home, giving us three rental properites.
I knew I didn’t want to move the girls from school to school with each move, so we had to decide on where we want to end up when it comes time to settle. We have always loved Agritopia in Gilbert. We used to go there EVERY weekend to eat, go to the dog park and walk the neighborhood and dream of living there. We aren’t buying in there quite yet, but are moving nearby…a few steps closer to our dream!
I’m excited to go on this new adventure with my hubby and my girls. Yes, it is stressful and yes, it’s a little sad, but it’s also kind of thrilling!
Did I mention that we already have an accepted offer on a new place? Our house goes on the market tomorrow. Here’s to praying that it sells FAST! I feel like we’re living an episode of Buying & Selling!