arielle elise » arielle elise photography

decisions, decisions.

lately i’ve been contemplating going back to work. or rather, staying home with leland. i’ve talked about it a lot with jay even though i think we already had a decision made up in the back of our minds. every time i hear about a girl my age getting their masters degree or finishing and graduating college, or starting a new career i start to doubt a little. i have always been independent. in fact, once upon a time i dreamed of traveling overseas to do missionary work on my own or be a journalist in some other state. so the thought of a stay at home mom doesn’t come natural to me but rather sounds like the opposite of independent. so when i got pregnant i was certain i’d work at least part time once leland came. however, things changed once he was born. my perspective on things changed just a bit when we all came home from the hospital and real life started.

the thing is, i dont have to get a full or part time job, i think i just wanted to more than anything. maybe i was afraid of not having enough money, or losing out on being social with a bunch of co-workers, or being recognized somehow. (which all of that in general is very, very meaningless when my worth is to be found in Christ anyway.) but now that i am home with leland, i can’t imagine working full time, only to scrape out a ton of that money for childcare, you know? i understand that a lot of moms have to work to make ends meet. i totally get that. but it’s not necessary for me to get a job and put leland in childcare all day just to have a few nicer things, pay off student loans quicker, and have some extra money for us. i am blessed to be able to stay at home with leland and i am thankful for that. so that is my decision. luckily, we are young enough where we have not gotten ourselves into a bunch of credit card debt or anything with some outrageous bills to pay. we are going to have to cut back on some things here and there, sacrifice some, but it is so worth it. thankfully, my photography is one way that i am making some money for our family. (i really pray that it continues to grow!)

i know that i can never get these years back. and the thing is, and something that i didn’t realize until now…is that staying at home really is a full time job. but so rewarding! i’m learning not to care so much when friends or others ask me if i’m going back to work and i say no, and they give me a funny look. this is who i am and i am trusting Him with the decisions i am making.

plus…who wouldn’t want to spend all day with this adorable little boy? :)

hope you had a blessed thanksgiving!




Wonderful! I think that it’s not that uncommon for moms to feel the way you do. We “plan” something in our heads and then when we see that precious child everything changes. I was thankful that when I had Hannah I took off 8 months of school to stay home with her. Becoming a mom changes everything about you and I definately needed that time to adjust. Being a stay at home mom is often much harder than going to work! People that don’t have children sometimes can’t understand this, but it’s so true! When I go to work, I have time to breath, don’t have to worry about my children hurting themselves… actually have adult meaningful conversations with real human adults (going a day or two communicating only with a non-vocal infant or whiny toddler can drive you crazy quickly :) so in a way, I enjoy work…. eventually I would like to work less than I do. Being a nurse I could work only 2-3 days a week, still spend lots of time with family and sort of have the best of both worlds.

Ultimately the decision is between you and Jay and God and I definately think God SMILES upon the fact that you want to stay home with Leland. Next to being Jay’s wife, being a momy to Leland is God’s greatest calling on your life. You’re right when you say these moments are precious and you can’t get them back. Eventually he will going to school (unless you homeschool), becoming more independant you will have more time to do those extra things. But you’re so wise in cherishing these moments.

Also if you going to work/sending him to daycare would barely make the bank break even it’s even a greater reason for you stay home. It’s a blessing that you don’t have to work. Thank God for that! Technically, I don’t have to either but I have a peace about going to work and loving on other people’s babies, and the adult interacation does me good and helps me keep balance in my life. :o) It gets crazy at times, but that’s just life.

I loved hearing your heart. Keep sharing!

Tommy Gausman

Mama, I am thinking that you are cooler then I thought you were,(and I loved you from the first time I met you)
Houses are boxes that people put their junk in,and sometimes look at it and say”Wow! I got more junk then the other guy!I’m doing good..
I’ve been to your house and I saw lots of love and smiles.. I think my son, and grandson,and one of the sweetest ladies I ever met, would be so better off, with you home….. Take good care of my boys.. Love you all (AND AM SOOOO PROUD OF YOU ALL) See you soon……. Tommy…


i totally agree when i got with carson i told him i wanted to work and that he could be the one to stay at home however now since iszick has been here i dont want to go to work i want to raise my child the way i want him to be raised and not have someone else teaching him stuff i dont want him to learn … however i am still in school grr cant wait to be done and hopefully will still be able to stay home with him



thank you so so much for your thoughts and encouragement, it means a lot. its so nice to have others who think the same when the world around you tells you different. i totally agree with you. i think it is awesome that you are able to be with hannah and judah and also help be a mother-figure to those in the hospital. you have to be a strong person to be in that position! what a blessing.

thanks again :)