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family time

When we were in debate mode about moving back, one thing that was a huge pull for us is being near our families. We wanted to have Sunday dinners, we wanted to surprise the nephews, or to see them play a sport, or to have the family over for dinner at our place! In the two months, we’ve done all of those. It’s been such a blessing to see both of Anthony’s grandmothers multiple times. We know that realistically our time with them is more limited, so we try to visit them as much as we can. We are already looking forward to Thanksgiving + Christmas. We will no longer be rushed to get everything in during a short amount of time. It’s been 11 years since we’ve been home for Thanksgiving. We cannot wait to partake in bringing a side dish to a holiday gathering!

I’ve been awful about taking photos with the Schmidt side of the family but that will change next time.

Rylan is obsessed with card games right now – lots of go fish and war

Back when the weather was warmer, we enjoyed the pool quite a bit!

Randon has struggled with spelling. We watched the boys our first week in Oklahoma and he aced that spelling test!!

Afternoon spent at the Oklahoma Science Museum

Afternoon spent at the Oklahoma Science Museum

I surprised Rylan at his first soccer match, then Uncle Anthony + I came again the following week. While he didn’t score either time, he finally accomplished it at the last game of the season!

Child labor – or what Randon thought was chores for money (we didn’t pay them!!)

Pumpkin book report for Rylan – I had no part in this but I thought it was super creative.

audi a4

We are the proud owners of a silver 2016 Audi A4!!! Anthony has been dreaming of an Audi since we saw James Bond driving one in Skyfall. Since 2005, Anthony had been driving a 2003 Kia Optima. I’m pretty sure it was one of the first years for the Optima. The car held up really well but it was definitely on it’s last leg. It needed thousands of dollars of work – we weren’t about to put that into a car that was falling apart! We ended up not even trying to sell it before we left New Jersey. The Saturday before we packed up, we drove the car down to a salvage yard, receiving $225 for it. We are almost positive it ended up in the car compactor, that not much was going to be salvaged!

For the past month, I’ve been driving my dad’s Smart car from his pharmacy to + fro work. My commute is only a few minutes, while Anthony has to drive on the highway every day. We both felt it was safer for him to drive the Honda, while I get whiplash from the Smart car (kidding!!). I’m already missing driving it but am so thankful for the smoother ride!

After a lot of back + forth between PNC Bank (whom we really wanted to go with but they do not service Oklahoma for auto loans), we ended up a week later working out a deal with BancFirst, making this our first big purchase as a married couple. That’s 12 years friends. We’ve waited so patiently to get the most perfect car. We’re happy!! (until that first car note happens!)

the museum

The best news that we have probably ever received is that Anthony got a job! A job that is perfect for him. A job that allows for growth, that allows him to use all of his gifts in a fast growing company. Currently he is the Web + Database Cataloger at the Museum of the Bible. While the museum is opening up in Washington DC on November 18th, the headquarters/archives is housed here in Oklahoma City!

A little back story on how this job came about. For the past however many years, Anthony has been the graduate editorial assistant for the Journal of Presbyterian History (stationed in Philadelphia). During the first quarter meeting of this year, the director of the historical society asked Anthony what he’s plans were after defending his dissertation. While being frank with her about the bleak outlook, she mentioned how she’d like to put Anthony in touch with Alan from the American Bible Society. ABS is in the process of opening a discovery center between the Liberty Bell + Independence Hall. After meeting with Alan, he asked A about researching the content that will be showcased through the discovery center. Anthony began right away (this was right after the defense!) + blew the proverbial socks off. Once we knew we were moving to Oklahoma, Alan immediately mentioned putting Anthony in touch with a few individuals at MOTB. The few individuals at MOTB set up a lunch meeting with Anthony once we finally got our stuff (that’s another post to come, cause the move was not without drama!).

It’s now been a month that Anthony’s been working there. He is really enjoying it. Guess what?!?! We are going to be at the opening of the museum on November 18th. We are excited for this opportunity + so many more to come.

two months in

Today marks two months since I started my new job at the North Side YMCA.

Within those two months, I helped deliver beds through the Sleep to Succeed Program at several apartment complexes in OKC

spent an afternoon at the Oklahoma State Fair with my coworkers as a team building project

spent a whole day participating in Y-Lympics, which is a wild day of directors competing for a spirit stick + bragging rights for a full year (talk about showcasing everyone’s “good sides”)

Our theme was 90’s. We tied for best costume! 🙂

spent a weekend in Fort Worth at a conference, + lastly promoted for the short term as the interim membership director! Every week I get asked if I still like them (my coworkers that is!). My answer is always of course I like it. I feel love, appreciation, + have support from the top down. This is exactly where God lead us.

It’s also a great day to reflect that it’s been a year since my “work” world was turned upside down. That my trajectory to this moment (of being in Oklahoma as a director) started one year ago. I can only reflect again on how God was working through all of that. When I thought I was being passed upon opportunity after opportunity, it was because I needed to go through all of that to be in the position I’m in, to be successful running two departments without looking back.


going home

Anthony + I had three goals when we left Oklahoma back in 2005.

  1. Get a Masters + PhD
  2. Get an amazingly cool job
  3. Move back closer to family

We’ve accomplished #1 as of May 20, 2017. While I wish we could say #2 + #3 go hand-in-hand, sadly we’ve skipped straight to #3.

Let me back it up a little bit. I’ve mentioned it a few times, but the past few years have been rough for us. We never thought we’d be in New Jersey as long as we have been. Last summer when no job turned up for Anthony, we did some major soul searching. To figure out what the next steps would be. We talked a whole lot about moving closer to family. Every chance I could get, I was looking at employment pages of schools in Oklahoma + Texas. I was looking for a job that I could take on there.

After many tears were shed, after many prayers went up, after lots of conversations with trusted family members, friends + colleagues, we decided to accept a position in Oklahoma, a position that would help me grow my career in the Y. I am now the Director of Health and Wellness at the North Side YMCA in Oklahoma City. This decision was very hard for the both of us.   It’s been bittersweet. We’ve surprisingly loved New Jersey. It had became our home. We lived there for 8 years! We grew as individuals + as a couple.

As we are currently on our way in one car to Oklahoma, we are excited + anxious about what the future holds for us!