You’d think that after working at Boys Town for nearly four years now that we’d feel settled. And in many ways, we do. We have found our stride in our role as Family-Teachers now (though there’s always more to learn!). The ethos of our home is well established. The girls in our home are appreciative, they hold each other accountable, and are able to see that we are their advocates and biggest cheerleaders. And for that, we are extremely grateful. We love our life here so much.
Boys Town has anywhere from 50-60 homes operating at any given time depending on how many Family Teachers Boys Town can hire and retain. Nearly every one of these families live in large houses scattered across our one square mile campus. However, there are about 5-10 of these homes that are located in a courtyard with large three-story apartment buildings; they are some of the original buildings on this campus that have been used for all sorts of purposes throughout the decades.
Since coming to Boys Town we’ve lived in these apartments. The first apartment we lived in was a smaller one (although if you were to still count the bedrooms it would be an eight bedroom, four bathroom apartment). We moved in into that apartment in July of 2016. Then in December 2017, with about three days notice, we moved to the top floor of the building next door. The top floor apartments are much bigger and are often called the “penthouse” apartments. Our space and layout was wonderful. We had a private living room with a kitchenette for our own use. We felt like we had a good amount of privacy because we had our own entrance and exit from the building. And the kitchen was huge in the main part of the home.
We’ve enjoyed living here for the last two and a half years. It has been a great place to raise our family and live. But the entire time we’ve lived in the apartments we’ve known it isn’t permanent. As people move on from family teaching around campus, their houses open up to be filled again. And usually the houses get offered to couples in the apartments.
As with any house or apartment, there are all sorts of pros and cons to a home’s location and layout. And for the last two and a half years we have felt that our current location has served us extremely well. Micah and Ezra are little escape artists who love to sneak out and play outside. Living on the third floor of an apartment gives us time to make sure we catch them before they simply run out the front door. And we aren’t near a busy road, where I feel Micah and Ezra would be in danger of getting hit by a car speeding down the street. And our apartment feels somewhat secluded and private. Even though we have lots of neat windows, we have lots of trees obscuring views out and around the building. And so we feel we have a sense of peace and quiet here in our home.
Because of these reasons, and many more, we’ve turned down many opportunities to move into houses on campus. We’ve enjoyed our apartment and had really no interest in moving. But over time we’ve started to see the benefit of living in one of the houses. They have a garage, which we are currently lacking, they have nice large basements, and an insane amount of storage space, of which we currently have next to none in the apartment. But beyond all these perks comes a sense of being settled. We’d have a house that would be our home for the many years to come. It would be our boys’ childhood home. Although the home would still not be owned by Sarah and me, we’d have much more a sense of ownership of where we live. We’d have our own lawn and flowerbeds to maintain. We’d have our own back patio. We’d have our own basement. These are things that we’ve not had this entire time, and they would become nice perks of our life here.
We recently decided to accept the opportunity to move into one of these homes. And within the next month or two we will be moving. They are currently doing some remodeling in the inside of the home before we move over, which is super exciting. Since we’ve accepted the opportunity to move it’s been constantly on my mind. I’ve been somewhat fixated on thinking about how we will decorate and arrange everything in the new home. The boys are very excited as well, bringing up the future move at least once a day or so.
We’ve been going over to the house a few times each week in the evenings to start working on the landscaping. And as I have been obsessing over the inside of the home, Sarah has been obsessing about the outside of the home, planning out exactly how our flower beds will be arranged.
We are excited to move and really sink our roots deep into this place. The goal is to live in this home until we feel it’s time to retire. We feel there isn’t a place better suited for Sarah and me to work together as a couple like we do, doing something we love and find meaningful, alongside so many wonderful people.
And thanks to all the people that give us so much love and support. Thank you for following along on our journey. We appreciate it so much!