This is big news!

Loyal readers and followers on social media have probably noticed I’ve been fairly quiet these past few weeks…maybe even months. It’s been a bit of a bumpy road for the RRG family in a few different ways, during this first half of 2014 – which means I haven’t had, to be honest, the mental and emotional energy I’ve needed to keep up with the blog. Just a modest rundown of what’s been happening with us would show things like challenges at work, a job loss (and subsequent new job, new hours, new arrangements) for J., and a set of new diagnoses for L.’s ongoing neurodevelopmental problems, which of course have come with a new action plan. Oh, and P.’s growing up and moving on from Pre-K to Kindergarten, and….

When J. and I sat down and looked at all of what was happening in our household and with our family, we knew some changes had to be made. You probably thought that one major job change would be enough, but we don’t do anything small around here. So we decided, if he was changing jobs, I should, too.

I KNOW. It seems like a crazy thing to do when the dust of unemployment is still settling. But we realized:

  1. J.’s new schedule has him out of the house much earlier, and returning home much later, than we’re used to. Whereas he used to be able to help with drop-offs and pick-ups, he can’t do much of that any longer. All of the kids’ needs would have to be jammed in around my work schedule, or my work schedule massaged (as far as might even be possible) to fit around their needs.
  2. We did not WANT our children’s needs to be something we had to try to “accommodate.”
  3. Our new insights into what L. needs from both school and home meant that not only did his schedule have to come first, but somebody (me!) would probably have to be available to work closely with his teachers, at least at times, to make sure that everything was progressing as expected.
  4. I wasn’t completely in love with my existing job, anyway, and after more than 4 years at the same position I wasn’t seeing it going anywhere that I truthfully wanted to follow.
  5. Our household wasn’t as well-tended as we wanted it to be. We were both spending many hours a day in service to other people’s schedules. By the time we got home at night with our kids, we wanted to connect with them, not clean the house and deal with all the projects and daily minutia that needed our attention. That’s a valid choice, but let me tell you, it’s not without its own consequences. At a certain point, it was just frustrating for us, on every level, to feel that we were spread so thin – and having to let things slide much more than made us comfortable.

Obviously, something needed to give. J. and I have always believed that living a happy, rewarding life should be our top priority – sometimes at the expense of better financial positioning, sometimes to the puzzlement of people around us. But we’re trying to carve out space in this crazy world that lets us feel more like we’re living and less like life is happening to us while we run on some treadmill and try to keep up with it. So we made the decision that I would step back. What might you call it these days? Leaning OUT, maybe?

I’m not going to stop working; I’m just not going to work on someone else’s timetables anymore. I’m not going to stop making money to contribute to our family’s well-being; I’m maybe just not entirely sure where all of that money is going to come from anymore. Yes, I’m going out on my own, and as happens sometimes when you just unclench your fists and ask the universe to help you answer a big, hard question, I’ve been provided with a wonderful way to enter the freelance world. I’ve been dying to share it with you, and now I can finally announce:

I’m joining the team at The Family Dinner Project!

The wonderful people at FDP have generously offered me the opportunity to work as a consultant, helping to shape their campaigns and get my hands into the amazing work they’re doing to improve family dinners – and the state of family life, in general – across the country. I’m excited to be a part of things, and even more excited when I consider how much richer this experience could make my work here on Red, Round, or Green. There are few moments in life where you can be instantly, acutely aware of how the pieces of your world are aligning, and this is one of those precious times. I am, at this moment, standing on the edge of something new and thrilling; feeling nervous, giddy, scared, hopeful, doubtful, confident, flummoxed.


Ready to move forward. And hoping that you’ll all continue to join me for these new adventures.