familypic
 
JessPlusMess

Limited Edition

Autographed Copy

Sunlight Burning at Midnight a memoir by Jessica Ronne

 

Subscribe to Blog

Your Name:
Your Email:

Search

Just some random, irrelevant, humorous, and hopefully inspiring musings on life, love, faith, widowhood, remarriage, adoption, blended families, caring for a handicapped child, mothering seven children, chickens, cooking, grief, over-coming grief, and everything else in between. Just Keep Livin!!

Big Changes Are 'A Comin

  • Font size: Larger Smaller
  • Subscribe to this entry
  • Print
Big Changes Are 'A Comin

I am a barrel of nerves today so much so that I’m struggling to gather my thoughts coherently not that I should be gathering anything other than the messes all over my house! But as with all messes I encounter: physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional, I work through them via the written word. As the words are flying out of my head and onto this post, our lives are about to significantly change. Right now Ryan is headed to Nashville to pick up an au pair who will be living with our family for the next year.


Blessed but stressed has been our life motto for over three years now – ever since we made the decision to add an 8th child to our family. Some have raised questioning eyebrows with this decision, but we forged through, and we stand by the decision today as one of the best things we’ve done for our family, BUT we are tired and stretched about as thin as they come. Something about raising teenagers, and not sleeping because of a newborn, and then raising teenagers with a toddler who does finally sleep (PRAISE JESUS!) but never, ever, ever stops moving when she’s awake, and then there are the other kids in between the teens and the toddler and Luke, our gentle soul, but who requires so much more than most twelve year olds and still striving for our dream of a simple life (which in actuality isn’t always so simple) and my jobs at the college and writing and so many possibilities which have been whispered about with agents and supervisors and those in authority but no time or energy to pursue most of it.


About a year ago we decided something had to change. We actively pursued caretaker options in our area and came up short every single time. We then discussed hiring a full-time nanny, but that’s an expensive option, and we really aren't after full time help. We were then introduced to the au pair possibility. I signed up for an online database of names, information, and pictures of potential candidates. I scoured these pictures for two months and finally settled on a hand full of girls (kind of like online dating) I was willing to reach out to. Long story short, we chose a woman from Brazil who is warm, kind, and a ballet dance teacher (the girls are so excited!). We’ve written back and forth, skyped a few times, and I’ve laid out exactly who I am and the boundaries I’m going to need to make this work (and she agreed!); however, just having her imminent arrival hang over our heads has also increased our stress load as Ryan has spent almost every waking moment over the past two weeks getting her studio apartment finished in an old barn loft (it’s pretty cool - see the above picture).


We really feel like this is a positive move for our family as not only will she provide help, she will also provide a cultural experience that we all will benefit from. Ryan and I both have opportunities on our plates that we just need a little time for. We need an extra set of hands for Annabelle who is bursting with energy in every cell of her being. We need help for Luke when his aids don’t show up. We need an extra driver for the older kids who have sports and friends and activities that they want to be a part of. We need someone who is familiar with and willing to watch the kids overnight so Ryan and I can get away occasionally and reconnect. We just need a third parent right now, not someone to replace us, just someone to assist us, and Ryan wasn't willing to entertain the idea of a second wife ( kidding…).
This decision has not been made lightly as I’ve gone back and forth and back again about having another person so intimately tied to our lives, but we feel a peace about it, and at this point, there’s no turning back. Pray us through. Pray for her as this undoubtedly will be a huge culture shock in rural Tennessee. Pray for the kids and pray for me that I can let go of some of the control issues I tend to have and start to breathe again.


And now we wait. And pray. And embrace the experience with arms wide open. Just keep livin. 

  • Guest
    Susan Saturday, April 1, 2017

    My friend here is on au pair #2 Their growing family loves the experience. I believe you will be as blessed as them. We love watching you in your strength!

  • Guest
    Dawn Scott Saturday, April 1, 2017

    Jess, I believe God has literally knit your family together with His own hands. It's been very rough and bumpy in places and we learn from those rough spots. This seems like an answer to prayer which will allow you to spend more time with your middle kids that you don't have right now. I love your family! I pray for y'all and miss your littles when they can't be at church with us. I pray this will help level out the rough bumps and allow you and Ryan to be who God is calling you to be. Love you!

  • Jessica Ronne
    Jessica Ronne Saturday, April 1, 2017

    Thank you Dawn!! That means so much from someone who does know my family on a personal level. Love you

  • Guest
    Rachel Hensley Friday, March 31, 2017

    This sounds amazing! I had never heard of this before but now I want one! This will be an amazing experience for your family and I am so happy for you!

  • Guest
    Sam Friday, March 31, 2017

    Wow, these kids lost their beloved mother/father. Stepmom decided she needed another baby for validation from the new husband and then bam we need an Au pair, because step mommy needs to focus on other opportunities. Poor kids can just try to connect with a new dancer Au pair Because their stepmom believes aids or Au pairs need to take over her responsibilities. Jess you are disgusting, teenagers need parents not au pairs during the difficult years. I'm sure their real mom would never hire out mother her children. You will never take her place for Ryan or the kids, she wAs a saint compaired to you.

  • Guest
    Lindsay Monday, April 3, 2017

    I would love to see you walk in Jess's shoes for one day with 8 children, one of which is special needs before you place such judgement. I am sure you are absolutely perfect!! I can't believe how rude and how much hatred one can show to someone just trying to do her best. Good thing I don't know who you are. As one of Jess's closets friends you have my blood boiling. Shame on you!!

  • Guest
    Jennifer Saturday, April 1, 2017

    Wow Sam, what a harsh posting. How sad that you are filled with such hate. Perhaps it's better to keep some of those thoughts to yourself.

    Jess is an awesome mom, wife and woman. Not once did Jess ever say anything about turning her children over to someone else to raise them.

    I'm not at a loss for words very often but your posting left me speechless. I do hope that you are able to work through some of the feelings you have and come to peace. It's not healthy to live with that much contempt in your life.

  • Guest
    Amanda Saturday, April 1, 2017

    Yikes... That's a bit harsh don't you think? I really hope you aren't as unhappy as you sound in this response.

  • Guest
    Natalie Saturday, April 1, 2017

    So sad when people completely misjudged others.
    Jess AND Ryan have made all these choices together. Pretty amazing if you really know whats going on.

  • Guest
    Sharri Friday, March 31, 2017

    Jess and Ryan, God will see you through this just as He has thus far! My prayers are with you and your family always. Just keep living!

  • Please login first in order for you to submit comments

Latest Blogs

Adored {and a giveaway!}
Another book review coming from Mabel Grace. She really enjoys the spotlight (shocking, I know), and loves participating in these reviews on mom’s blog. Lindsay Franklin’s Adored devotional book for young women, was another perfect opportunity for her to showcase how relevant these books are for a young women like herself.     Hi, my name is Mabel. I am here to tell you about an amazing book that helped me with a few things that I am not very good at, well actually not at all. What I mean is that I am not good with patience. The book that I am talking to you about is called Ado...
Continue Reading...
Pizza Dough Tutorial {for a good hearty dough and a good hearty laugh!}
This past Sunday morning, a morning draped in hazy weariness due to the time change the night before, a morning where all the Ronnes were moving just a tad bit slower than usual, a morning like so many of our Sunday mornings where we gather around the table to eat cinnamon rolls, and drink coffee, and I make pizza dough for our traditional Sunday night pizza party.  A morning where I stood in the kitchen at around 10:00 am and realized my house was eerily quiet.   I glanced outside and noticed a few children playing.  I peeked down the stairwell and into the basement where I h...
Continue Reading...
Seeking Simplicity One Seed at a Time {and a giveaway!}
In the last post I detailed my acknowledgement of a social media addiction and the specific steps I have been taking to clear my head.  As these tangible steps have been put into practice, I’ve noticed a fogginess lifting.  I used to contribute the airheadedness (for lack of a better word) to the fact that I have 8 children, and I’m sure this does play a small role, but I do believe social media anxiety has also played a significant role.  Now that my head is clear(er), I find I have time to reinvest in hobbies I haven’t had time for in months or maybe years – such as reading re...
Continue Reading...
Computers, Tablets, Phones OH MY! Help for the addiction.
As a newbie writer I’m repeatedly told that no one will ever read my words if I don’t have a platform, but as a person, I’m not really into the platform concept!  I’m extremely introverted. I get all bunched up in knots if someone doesn’t agree with me or like me anymore.  I don’t so much mind sharing pieces of my life with the world, but I do mind when strangers begin to throw rocks at my words or my family because they don’t agree with something or they are simply in a pattern of self loathing and decide to take it out on me. I do participate in the online world in a pretty large...
Continue Reading...
Love and Loss {And a Giveaway!]
The baby remains absent And grandma starts chemotherapy And the “C” word enters our children’s vocabulary once again Along with the “D” word in regards to their unknown sibling And our eyes spill in response to their tears And children still starve And that woman still aches for a loving spouse And girls are raped again and again And that is the reality of what we call life. And that is why our hearts ache for something purer And bigger And more beautiful We ache for more We need more We yearn for a hereafter Where all the pain is gone And every tear is wiped from our eyes Our hearts screa...
Continue Reading...
PIZZA PARTY!
Anyway…  I needed to do some soul searching due to the information bombardment and what I felt like it was doing to my soul as it was not only sucking me dry mentally, spiritually, and emotionally, it was depriving my family of me – present, engaged, fully in tune me – which isn’t good.  It’s not good for me, and it’s not good for you either. I took stock as I so often do.  I thought about how the information was feeling overwhelming and causing me to be anxious about life which in reality I really shouldn’t be anxious about because we’re all good. We’re healthy thriving peopl...
Continue Reading...
Follow Your Heart {And a Giveaway!}
I have four beautiful daughters ranging in age from 12 on down to 2: Mya, Mabel, Jada, and Annabelle.  Four hearts that I’ve been entrusted to nurture and care for. Four young ladies with strong wills and lots of estrogen. On the one hand, I love having four daughters.  I love watching them learn life skills and grow into their own personalities. I love crafting together and thinking about our future adventures when they’re grown; meeting up somewhere fun to shop till we drop or Ryan and I watching the grandbabies for the weekend so that they can get away with their husbands - goofy...
Continue Reading...
Brave and Beautiful.
One of the best aspects of being a blogger (even a very part time blogger) are the opportunities I have to review new book releases, and I am so excited about this recent opportunity to review Brave Beauty a devotional by Lynn Cowell; a beautiful inspirational book for the young girl in your life.  Brave Beauty encourages spiritual truths that girls of all ages need to hear and be reminded of on a consistent basis. Truths such as the appeal of inner beauty, boldly living your faith, being a friend to those in need, and putting your trust in God. Cowell gently guides the reader, chapter b...
Continue Reading...
Hope Prevails
I walked into the ultrasound room and felt the complete absence of warmth. No beauty relieved the coldness, no picture of a mother holding a child or a sunset over the water. Nothing to remind those who nervously waited of the potential for joy within the world. A large, heavyset woman poked with her stubby fingers at my thin, slightly rounded body. As the silence continued to descend, the air thick­ened with unspoken thoughts. I looked at this doctor, the expert I had been sent to, repeatedly trying to catch her eye, to shake her unmovable countenance. I wanted to see a glimpse of understandi...
Continue Reading...
Mother's Day Sale and Interview
Just a few items for consideration as you go about your week.   First - In honor of all of the wonderful mothers, grandmothers, and motherly figures in the world, I'm offering a Buy One / Get One 1/2 off sale on all autographed copies of Sunlight Burning at Midnight ordered here on the blog and also at Facebook/jessplusthemess.  It's the perfect time to buy one for yourself and then gift another to that special someone in your life. This sale will be honored all the way through to Mother's Day - May 14.  If you'd like the books sent to different ad...
Continue Reading...