Everything new.

We’re in San Antonio now.

I love it. So far. The contrast of my prior life to my life now, is so stark that some days I find myself feeling like I’m a different person. A whole new world of people & surroundings. A brand new life, I guess you could say.

Everything in Texas is big. EVERYTHING. The road signs & billboards, the houses, the stores, the portion sizes (of course), the landscape.

We live in a beautiful, newer, spacious home in a nice neighborhood. Real estate (compared to our prior locations) is cheap. Our BAH (military housing allowance, since we don’t live on base) enables us to live in a 5 year old, 3,000+ square foot house. The neighborhood has a community pool & the kid’s school is a reasonable 12 minute walk away.

So much has changed in a short amount of time.

After nearly 4 months of Joseph living in a different state for COT & JSOC (commissioned officer training & JAG school), we’re now a family again.

I’m taking my time reassessing my priorities, what I want my life to look like from this point on. My new reality is so different from my old one. I no longer have to work for pay, & as such, I find myself with a greater sense of calm & peace. A feeling I’m not sure I’ve felt, at least in this way, since we’ve been married. Joseph finally has a job, & not just a good job (which it is), but a career. The uncertainty of the future is no longer a part of my day-to-day reality.

My older 3 kids are in school (more on that decision, in another post). And after homeschooling them this past year, having the responsibility of having them all day every day, no longer there, well, it’s going to take some getting used to.

You know that talk about figuring out how to scrape together extra money & cutting back on the grocery budget so we could get out of debt sooner? Well, we discovered we are going to be getting a good chunk of money back from doing a DITY move, much much more than we originally anticipated. Lucky? I’d say providential.

For non-military folks, a DITY move means we moved ourselves (which was a ton of work, btw, & many times I questioned our choice to do the move ourselves since it was so time consuming/stressful/labor intensive), instead of having the military’s professional movers move us.

This means I don’t have to have a paper route, or live on $175 a month for groceries. We’ll still have a lean budget so we can get out of debt, but oh joy, I do not have to think about trying to earn a few extra dollars.

I don’t have things all figured out yet. In fact, there are still boxes to pack, pictures to hang, & oh yes, a life to figure out.

We finally have a steady paycheck & a more than that, a beautiful home & Joseph has promising career. After years of juggling the working mom thing, it’s official, I am a stay-at-home mom. I am a homemaker.

How do I want to structure my day? What will my routine be? What things can/will I do to be the kind of mother/wife/friend I’ve always wanted to be but felt I didn’t have the time/energy? What books will I read? Will I finally carve out time to learn how to play the piano? Will I finally get around to being the sister/friend who remembers birthdays & anniversaries?

And, how much time do I want to spend blogging?

I can honestly say I’ve missed blogging (you know I love it).

At the same time, I love my new life & I’m not sure what role blogging will play. I know I want to focus on creating a building a great “real” life. If that means my online life has to take a back seat, I’m okay with that. I hope you know how grateful I am to you for reading (some of you, for years!) & want you to know I’ll be open &  honest about what’s going on in my life.

What I’m trying to say, is, I’m not sure how frequently I’ll be blogging now, but I want to make it very clear I love you for reading, commenting, & sharing (really, making my blog, a blog of any value) & I hope that you’ll be patient with me as I figure things out.



  1. Kellyann
    on January 28, 2013 at 5:21 pm said:

    Oh my goodness do I feel for you. San Antonio is such a different world.. my husband’s family lives there. I’m glad that you love it and that brings me some comfort. My husband wants us to move to Texas and last time we visited I was in tears because I didn’t think I could adjust to how different it was (we are upstate NY). I love to hike mountains.. but there are none there. I also know how hard it can be as a military spouse… that also feels like a different world sometimes. Lots of changes for you! You’re a strong woman and I am sure all will continue to fall into place:).

  2. Rachel @ My Naturally Frugal Family
    on January 18, 2013 at 7:55 am said:

    Oh so glad to have you back, even if you do scale back your blogging.

    Good to know that you all have settled into Texas life and that things are coming together. I am sure that there has been no greater joy then to have all of you together under one roof.

    Looking forward to future posts 🙂

  3. Alissa N
    on January 10, 2013 at 8:04 am said:

    So lovely to hear your voice!! Congrats on the move, it sounds like such a wonderful and positive shift in your life. My hubby and I are working on our debt now, and I was thinking of you when we were crunching numbers. So glad things are going so well!! I am always supportive of your blog and however you can find balance with it. Even if you only post once every other month, I will still be here to read!!

  4. Daisy
    on January 9, 2013 at 12:30 pm said:

    Janae, how wonderfully blessed you’ve been! I’m all smiles hearing of all the wonderful things that have come your way recently. I do hope you’ll stick around with blogging–even just once a week is doable, isn’t it ;)? (I say, being the person who sometimes goes weeks without doing so…) But I completely understand if you don’t! If opportunity is knocking…

    I know that even if you don’t keep posting, I will be returning here as I do to keep checking out your stack of recipes. 😀 (Especially since my daughter is going to have to go at least wheat-free–blood work done today for celiac. Now the wait-and-see.)

  5. Dana
    on January 8, 2013 at 9:20 am said:

    Good to hear from you, Janae! I’m so glad that all is going well in your new digs. San Antonio sounds like a great area. I can’t really add to all the sentiments above- I just want to echo that I am so happy for you- and that while we will all miss your wonderful posts, that you are wise to take some time to yourself and for your family and just “be” without worries about deadlines and outside projects. I hope J is enjoying his new position and of course I am so glad that the money situation is good so you can add lots more fresh fruits & veggies to your diet!! : )

    Thinking of you and wishing God’s blessings upon you now and always! D

  6. Marsha
    on January 8, 2013 at 8:46 am said:

    I’m so happy for you and your family, Janae! What a wonderful year this will be for you! Although, I do love reading your blogs I certainly understand family as a priority. I’ve thought the same about my little blog and what is most important in life. Good luck with all you do. Much love to you!

  7. Joy
    on January 8, 2013 at 8:06 am said:

    So good to see this post and to know you’re doing well, Janae! Yes, what a relief it is when you can stop worrying so much about where the money is coming from. It occurred to me yesterday that this is the first year for which I won’t receive a W-2 — all of the work I did was solely for myself. I had a lot of doubts about this throughout the year and, at points, began trolling the job ads. But James pointed out that working on my freelance work and the blog is an investment into a better future. And it’s true. I’ve never fit into a traditional mold for work, and not forcing myself to do it has opened me up to all kinds of opportunities I never would have had otherwise.

    While I don’t have kids, like you do, I do have the same sense that the things that are important to me must be nurtured. I know it must be that way multiplied by infinity when it comes to your family. You’ve earned this happiness, and I’m so happy for you. Whatever your blogging future may bring, I’m looking forward to it — and to our friendship, both on and offline. xo

  8. Leanne @ Healthful Pursuit
    on January 8, 2013 at 5:49 am said:

    I’m so happy to hear from you! I can relate to the feeling of you having a completely different life. I’ve felt that way too, since I left my job and we moved across the country. Nothing is familiar, other than Kevin and the puppies. It was easier once all of our things showed up… now we’re surrounded with things that remind us of ‘home’. But yes, definitely an adjustment.

    Sounds like things have slowed down for you, which is great, too. Those last couple of weeks sounded extremely challenging. Can’t wait to read about your decision to place the kids back in school, and for images of the 3000 sq foot home! Gosh, I miss our beast of a home some days 🙂

  9. Alisa
    on January 7, 2013 at 10:35 pm said:

    Congrats on the move and the extra cash and becoming a SAHM! I didn’t realize you had been working. Now that the Christmas rush is over, I plan to read back over your last few posts and catch up. Looking forward to hearing more about it! And post pics of the house/landscape in Texas!

  10. Adina | Gluten Free Travelette
    on January 7, 2013 at 9:12 pm said:

    I was wondering how things were going and I’m so glad to hear that things are going well. Can’t wait to hear more about your adventures in Texas!

  11. Cara
    on January 7, 2013 at 8:11 pm said:

    Happy New Year, thanks for sharing this update! It sounds like everything is going well and you have many great things ahead 🙂

  12. Kristi
    on January 7, 2013 at 6:58 pm said:

    I am so excited and happy for you and your family Janae!! I have been a SAHM for 9 months now, and I felt the same way you did while working. Too many balls to juggle and not enough true time to spend with my family. Being home all the time has been a huge adjustment for me, but the best thing I have learned is to be still. I did a lot of focusing on Psalm 46:10, “Be still, and know that I am God…”

    Reprioritization and focusing more on God and my family is exactly what I needed. What we all needed. And although I love reading your blog, I was also happy to see you are refocusing and the blog may take a backseat. Do what you are lead to do and follow it with all your heart. Being a SAHM is such a blessing!

    Yay for the extra money, too. Providential is right!

    Happy 2013 to you and your family!


  13. Kathy
    on January 7, 2013 at 5:50 pm said:

    Oh I am so happy for you and your husband and family. So great you were blessed with extra money especially at this time. I am so glad you have a fresh start. Enjoy!

  14. Kat Kirkpatrick
    on January 7, 2013 at 4:45 pm said:

    Congratulations! It sounds like things are going great!

    I’ve been doing the stay-at-home mom thing for about a year now (after 8 years as a working mom) and it is really wonderful and eye-opening. I love being there for the kids and also having time to do the things that are important to me (exercise, reading, etc.). I miss working and I will return to it at some point but, for now, being a mom is where it’s at.

    Enjoy! Hope you’ll continue to blog. 🙂

    • Janae Wise
      on January 7, 2013 at 6:48 pm said:

      Hi Kat, & thank you! I agree, it is eye opening, & there are moments that are priceless.

      “I love being there for the kids and also having time to do the things that are important to me (exercise, reading, etc.).” I agree! When you’re a working mom, there are far too many things to do & not enough hours in the day. I always felt like I was juggling a dozen or so balls in the air, & at any moment they’d all drop. So far, I feel like I can devote myself, in an undistracted way, to my husband & children. They are the ones that matter most to me, & having the luxury of being, really being there for them is a blessing.

      Kids, like puppies, grow up too fast–there will be a time for work, but like you said, for now it’s nice to enjoy full-time motherhood. Glad you’re having a great experience with it.

      Thanks for your kind thoughts, Kat.

  15. Sara
    on January 7, 2013 at 2:13 pm said:

    I know how you feel. I felt that same peace and relief when my husband had finally started his career. It’s an amazing feeling. Soak it up! I wish you all the best in this new adventure!

  16. lfwfv
    on January 7, 2013 at 1:08 pm said:

    I’ve thought of you often the last few days, realizing you were busy with your reunited family, holidays, and the move. Soooo glad to hear things are going well for you guys, that you have been blessed with some unexpected money, and that you get to be a full-time stay-at-home mommy. I can’t wait to hear what your new life evolves to include and exclude. I will look forward to any and all blogging you are able to do, but i think it is great that you prioritize real life and especially your family. Your kids and husband are so lucky to have you.

    Take care Janae!

  17. JL
    on January 7, 2013 at 10:17 am said:

    It sounds like a wonderful move and you have a world of possibilities in front of you – all while your and your family are together -what’s better than that?! Congrats!

  18. Cadry
    on January 7, 2013 at 8:39 am said:

    Congratulations on the move! It sounds like everything is really coming into place for you. That’s so wonderful. You deserve it!