About

IMG_2340In 2012, I decided to become a recycled student and go back to school for a master’s degree in communication focused on digital media from the University of Washington.

In the first course required for our cohort, we were tasked with designing a website and managing the site’s content as a way for us to delve into web design, site analytics, storytelling, and promoting a brand.

A classmate created a website about reducing the need for plastic in our world. Another friend created a site that talked about dog-friendly businesses in the Seattle area (which eventually turned into a successful dog rescue organization and got me involved with fostering dogs).

I created a personal blog because I wasn’t feeling confident I could save the world with recycling or make a dent in the world of dog rescues. Write what  you know, people say. So this is what I know…

Eons ago, I married the guy I had dated through high school and college. Eric and I married the year I graduated from college while he was finishing his final year of engineering. We had our daughter Megan four years later. Then twins. And then our bonus baby, Katie, a month before our 10th anniversary.

From left: Ryan, Megan, Paige and baby Katie

I worked for an international Christian humanitarian organization. It would be fun to think I was doing nothing less than ending world hunger and bringing about world peace, but most days I sat in meetings and stayed late at the office striving to empty an overflowing email inbox. Eric framed his engineering diploma and became a stay-at-home Dad a few years after he graduated.

It’s hard to know where the road actually veers off of Plan A onto Plan B. People generally don’t wake up one morning thinking, “I should blow up my marriage and walk out on my wife and kids.” Instead, one usually starts down a path with small steps. It begins with little justifications. Small decisions to not disclose something.

Eric and I were friends with a couple at our church, Angela and her husband, Rick. Angela and I hosted baby showers for each other, shared maternity clothes when our pregnancies overlapped, and traded kids’ clothes between us.

After Katie was born, I found out Angela and I were sharing more than kids’ clothes … we were sharing a relationship with Eric as well. Both of our marriages ended, and Eric and Angela married months after our divorce finalized.

It’s been a journey. When Eric and I separated, our three youngest kids were all under 4 years of age. If life wasn’t crazy enough, I added Whistler, a Black Labrador/Rhodesian Ridgeback puppy to our family because I’m a firm believer in entropy, I guess.

I used to know so much more about life and love, kids and kin before life got started. Today, I know much less than I used to. There’s only this much iNgo/know: There’s a lot of life and laughter to be had on Plan B. It wasn’t what I necessarily mapped out, but life is good these days.

This is Megan and me in 2015, the year she graduated from high school, and I graduated with my master’s degree.

In 2019, Megan graduated from Pepperdine and then joined Kamala Harris’ campaign.

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My twins, Ryan and Paige, just started college at Pepperdine, but in this year of COVID, college began in their childhood bedrooms on Zoom. IMG_3624

Katie, my youngest, is now 17. When she was in preschool, she wanted to grow up to marry our dog, Whistler. Or become an elf and work for Santa in the North Pole. Then, she wanted to become a pilot to fly rescue dogs to adoptive families. We’ll see what’s next.

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Sure, there are days that could drown a navy seal, but then I remember what my friend Erinn told me, “What doesn’t kill you, makes you a blogger!”

Good to have you along for the journey,  

Shelly

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