Category Archives: Moving

Sheppard Homes (Part Deuce)

As I mentioned yesterday, we are happy to finally be living in our highly anticipated loft apartment. We moved in on December 28th as a way of kicking 2013 (the Year of Disappointment) in the butt on its way out. Yesterday I began detailing all of our homes we have had in 7 ½ years of marriage. So here’s the 2nd half.

Home #8: We left the Chicago suburbs in June 2010 to go back up to Michigan. This time we were full-time missionaries instead of summer interns. June-August we lived with our beloved Auntie Barb. She’s an aunt to us and our boys only in our hearts, not biologically but we love her. She might be the most generous person I’ve met.


Please ignore whatever that man is doing and focus on that gorgeous backyard.


Home #9: Labor Day 2010 we rented a beautiful home in Felch, Michigan. The locals referred to it as “the upside down house” because the living room and kitchen were upstairs and the bedrooms were downstairs. We loved that house with its lovely views and spacious hardwood floors which were perfect for riding bikes and throwing balls (winters were long, okay?). We lived here a few months shy of 2 years. This was the longest we lived anywhere. Little Guy was born during this time.



The best part about this house was watching the changing seasons from our back deck. Beautiful.

Home #10: A lovely couple bought the house so again it was time to move on. We were planning on leaving Michigan late August 2012 but still needed a place to live all summer. We ended up moving into the house of some missionary friends for a few months while we worked at one summer camp and they worked at another. The trails behind this house in the forest were covered with wild raspberries and blackberries. I competed with the bears and birds for the tart fruit.

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I also had to compete with a certain 3-year old who ate the berries as fast as we could pick them.

Home #11: Fall 2010 we moved in with Tim’s parents near the Twin Cities, Minnesota. I was struggling with Post-partum depression pretty heavily at this point and we appreciated the love and support we received from them. We thought for sure we would be out within a few weeks. We lived there for almost a year.


It was here that Little Guy discovered watermelon.


And his life was never the same.

Home #12: The time came to move to Colorado. Nothing went as planned and we moved in with a dear elderly woman from my brother-in-law’s church for 3 weeks thinking our apartment would be ready September 2013.

Home #13: Our apartment was not ready. We were officially homeless. For like, a day. Then we moved into the basement of a church house in downtown Denver. We had 10 bunk beds at our disposal. We got out of there after 6 weeks somehow without any ER trips from boys jumping off beds.


Fun fact: We have never lived in a place too small to successfully play “hide and seek.” You just have to be reaaallly creative.

Home #14: Still no apartment. But, in the basement of the same building there was an open garden level apartment. “Garden level” basically means you are living underground. Sunlight was scarce and tempers were short in that tiny space. We lived there from October 15th until last weekend.

Home #15: Our beautiful, long-anticipated, loft apartment. Praise God, we are finally here.

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There is one other thing that makes this all a little more crazy. When we packed up all our stuff from our house in Michigan, June 2012, we thought it would be a few months before we unpacked it. However, it was packed in boxes, except for clothes, until 5 days ago. For a year and a half all of our belongings were in boxes.

So there you have it. 15 homes in half as many years. I’m not sure why my life has gone this way. I’d rather not have made so many moves. I’m really good at packing but I still loathe doing it. But this is my life. These are the choices I made. So I’m going to own it and choose to learn from it and live with it. I just hope the next 7 years don’t include as many boxes.

I don’t quite know how to end this post, so I’m going to put up this silly picture as a diversion and sneak away while you are distracted…

“I don’t always wear my unicorn mask. But when I do I peer at people out the car window.”


The Many Sheppard Homes (Part 1)

Happy New Year! (Okay, I wrote this several days ago so let’s pretend that 2014 is still brand new, deal?) I hope that you were able to celebrate it better than we did: Cranky kids put to bed at 8:30, Cranky Mommy and Daddy to bed at 10:00. Daddy up at 6 to be at work at 7.

There was a bright side, though. We were able to watch the downtown Denver fireworks from our window because…We are in our new apartment! Woohoo! Finally. This past Saturday we enlisted the help of a few brave souls and one brother who didn’t have a choice, to carry all our belongings up three stories. We are living in a complete mess of boxes but are so, so happy to finally be in our place.

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We counted up the moves leading up to this one and the grand total of homes we have lived in is…drumroll….15. Yikes. When I put that out on Facebook I think our friends were a little surprised. We’ve only been married 7 ½ years. How is this possible? I know, right? I’m not sure myself.

So to give you an idea of why and how we have lived in so many homes, I decided to give a quick rundown of all 15 for those of you who are curious. If you’re reading this and thinking, I really don’t care, I hear ya. Go ahead and log out. I promise I will have something more rewarding next time you tune in (yeesh, did I really just promise that?).

Home #1: July 2006 we got married in Iowa and in August moved to Colorado for lack of teaching jobs in Chicago (where we went to school and met) for Tim. We had a beautiful top level apartment with a fireplace. Here we acquired one hyperactive dog named Dora. She is a poodle mix with the heart of a Labrador.

Aww look at her and her little bows. She used to be so cute.

Home #2: We left Colorado June 2007 to spend our summer as missionaries in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Lived all summer in a camper-trailer. Very tiny home.

I don’t currently have a picture of that home, as the other computer is still packed. But here’s a picture of me in 2007 petting a deer. You’re welcome.

Home #3: Back to Chicago so I could finish college. We lived in a studio apartment that was only slightly bigger than our camper-trailer. Our bed folded up into the wall. For those of you who speak Chicagoan, we lived in Logan Square off the California Blue Line stop.

Home #4: Again, off to Michigan as missionaries. This time we lived in a trailer house for the summer. Our biggest home yet! We shared it with a chipmunk who came in through the hole in our kitchen floor and liked to scare the daylights out of me whenever I came around the corner.


We are thrilled to be having our picture taken.


Home #5: We made the move out to the Chicago suburbs (Roselle) to be closer to Tim’s job. We had a bottom level apartment which was frequented by the ducks we would feed out of our sliding door. I graduated college in May 2009 and gave birth to Son #1 in July 2009.

Our dining room became the nursery.

Home #6: Our lease ran out before we found our next home and we couldn’t stay in our 1 bedroom with a baby. Our dear pastor’s wife from that time let us rent her late mother’s house in Glenview while we continued our search. We were there for 4 weeks.

Home #7: In late fall 2009, we found an itty bitty one bedroom (that was all we could afford!) in Arlington Heights, IL. The complex was called The Tanglewood, but we affectionately referred to it as The Tangle-Hood. It was here that I was woken up in the early morning by a drug bust going on across the hall. I heard the police yelling and kicking open the door and in my sleepy state thought for sure that they were coming in our place. We were there for 9 months.

Me bemoaning the fact that we had no dining room table. Okay, we had it…but it was still packed…after living there for a couple months…

And that’s all for this post. You will have to come back tomorrow to see the rest! You’re dying of anticipation, I know. But hang in there. Find something to do to keep your mind busy while you anxiously wait by your computer hitting the “refresh” button.