My name is April. I am a wife to the best man in the whole world (to me). And mother to 4 of the cutest kids in the world… and I might be a bit biased but what mom isn’t? My kids are ages 9, 6, 3, and 1. My husband and I have been married for 13.5 years. We met through mutual friends, and okay, I may have dated his best friend first, but Weston was living on the other side of the country serving a church mission at the time, so I didn’t even know him then. When I was 18 I worked as a personal assistant to a Realtor and knew that this was what I wanted to pursue as a career. She worked hard and made good money; but was able to do so while being a mom and creating her own schedule and be her own boss.
Which is what I wanted for myself. I continued working for her while going through the first two years of college and only quit when I decided to spend a semester abroad. In 2005 I went to London for a course in travel writing. There I developed a problem. And that problem was wanderlust. I LOVED every aspect of traveling.
I loved immersing myself in culture and seeing history in real life. I loved the people, places, food, the good parts and even the bad parts. Like when the train station I planned on sleeping at closed at 1 am unbeknownst to me and my companion and we somehow convinced the guards to let us stay.
They smuggled us upstairs and had us lay low until the station reopened at 5 am. My parents weren’t thrilled when I told them about that one. So, I came home and finished my degree in mass communications and prepared for a life of Real Estate with some travel thrown in. I had a life planned out and ready, and then at the VERY young age of 19, I met a man who try as I might to fight it, won me over and changed the course of my life. Wes (obviously) was smitten with me from the beginning. I, however, was uninterested in dating. He became my best friend and we spent every day together, though I didn’t want to date and ruin “the friendship”. He had ulterior motives though and would have been just fine with ruining the friendship.
But, he played it cool and over time I realized that my love for him was deep and meaningful. We were married a few months before my 21st b-day. Enter my 2nd problem in life; Adulting. School, marriage, careers, money, life directions, it all became a lot. But, it was okay. We maneuvered it all together.
And, as life happens, we made choices that took us in a direction that changed over time. Good directions, bad directions. Choices that refined us and put us through metaphorical fire if you will. But, we kept on keeping on. We enjoyed the good, we endured the bad. I started working real estate while Wes pursued a career that he decided was NOT what he wanted.
From there, he basically worked different jobs looking for something he loved and wanted to pursue. Well, it turns out Real Estate was it. After working as my assistant, he got his license and took over the business as my business turned to making and raising our children. Well, the thing about Real Estate is that when it’s good, it’s awesome. But so often it can be feast or famine. And, we often had to turn to our savings to survive the hard months.
We had school debt, credit cards, we were completely upside down on a house we bought at the worst time, and now multiple children to take care of and provide meaningful activities and experiences.
Leaving our travel money and wants at, well, minimal. I am not going to lie, sometimes things were and are so tough. So, we started looking for creative ways to have fun, and not dip into our funds too much. And it was enjoyable to do and we, as it turned out, were good at it.
And our family and friends often asked about our plans, how to do XYZ, and what they should do on the weekend, etc. We became the go to people to have fun as a family and a lot of times do it on a budget. Sure, we splurge at times, but we don’t spend a great deal in general. My husband, noticing how often people asked me about these kinds of things suggested I start an Instagram so people could just look and see and do it themselves. So, I did.
After starting it up and seeing a huge following in a few short weeks, we decided to create a blog and possibly monetize. I assure you the amount of work that goes into these things is worth being paid for. It is NOT nearly as simple as I initially assumed it would be. The more I researched, and worked, the more I really liked the idea and saw it as a way to travel, do things with my kids, have my husband still work, but pick up some slack when things were slow.
And here we are. We are just 4 months in and have already seen a lot of success in it. It’s been a fun journey and it will be exciting to see where it leads!
But, who we are will always be a loving family, who is simply trying to spend as much time together doing quality things, and sharing fun and joy around as much as we can no matter where life takes us.