Plan A, B, C…..W?


I have three blog posts started and sitting on my computer. They are self-reflective, profound, and well planned. Yet, I sit here about to write out another update of our lives because once again, the best laid plans have turned to chaos. This plan wasn’t Plan A, or Plan B, or even Plan C! How even the plans that are back-ups to the back-ups can go awry amazes me, but we agree that the best way to deal is to laugh through it and say a prayer and keep following the paths laid before us.

If you have been keeping up then you know that the house we have been renting from my grandmother has sold and we now have to move. We are having a new home built, but it isn’t due to be finished until at least the end of November. We found a place to go for the 7 months of in between time, but since it is a single-family home, we decided to move the wedding up to the end of May (also because we just really want to be married now and all the reasons we had for waiting have gone away). We have until April 30th to get completely moved and until May 27th to get a wedding planned. We haven’t started packing yet because a) we haven’t had time! We have been trying to focus on the wedding before it was too late for things that have to be planned ahead for and b) we wanted to be sure the sale was going to go through before we started. They closed on the house on Thursday so it’s time to move.

The house we are moving to was previously owned by my great aunt Glora. She passed away 6 months ago and the house hadn’t changed much since. My mom’s cousin agreed to let us rent the house (it is only three streets over so the kids can stay in the same school district for now), but it still needed to be emptied and the family lives in Arizona. They graciously came all the way to Florida last weekend to empty everything out in a matter of days. They worked so hard and we are so grateful. As things came out of the house, it became clear that it needed more work than any of us had realized. It was built in the mid 70’s and hadn’t been updated much. Time had taken a toll on the floors and walls. The family decided to have the floors replaced and we told them we would have the walls painted to help out. I was to meet the flooring company on Thursday at the house to let them in and answer questions. Myself, Madalyn, Meredith, Josiah and Charlotte were hanging out in the house while they got started. They got in and moved out the refrigerator and oven. They pulled off base boards. They started peeling linoleum. They started pulling back carpet. Then HAULT!!! One of the men came to me: “Ma’am? Can I show you something?” I followed him to the dining room where he had started pulling back the carpet. He showed me a black substance underneath it and said, “I am pretty sure this is asbestos and I need to make a phone call before I can continue.”

Asbestos??? Really? Really???

As he talked on the phone in Spanish, I watched the other man start to pull the trashed floor boards back out of their truck and put their tools back in the cab. Not a good sign. After a while, the first man put me on the phone with a specialist on the other side. He informed me that he had looked at the pictures he was sent and, considering the age of the house, he had to assume it was asbestos and for the safety of his men and our family, they required that it be tested before they continued. I gave him the owner’s phone number and watched as every spot that had been opened up on the floors was sealed with duct tape and we were advised to leave the house in case any got stirred up. This also means we can’t ask anyone to be in there to paint before it is tested. We had moving day scheduled for April 22nd and had lined up a small team of helpers to aid the event.

We talked to the family again on Friday and the update is that this is a holiday weekend so nothing will happen until Monday. The first thing that will have to happen is a proposal. After that will be the sample taken and waiting for results. If it is asbestos, there will a whole removal process, followed by rescheduling the flooring, getting in there ourselves to do some needed work, and scheduling painting all before we can move stuff in. Long story short, it looks likely that our April 22nd move date will not be and there is a chance it won’t be the 30th either.


So who wants to take in this family of 9???

Ok I am kidding. Mostly. We aren’t even going to make a new plan yet…because, well…..plans, man. Instead we will simply start packing and wait to hear more. But not tomorrow (Saturday), because we have a birthday party to host for two special little girls. And not Sunday because it’s Easter. Monday, Monday I will start packing!

Ahhh, beautiful chaos.

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Ashley Karaffa

Ashley is mother to a blended family of 10 and appreciating the beautiful chaos of it all. She enjoys creating systems - because how can you survive a family with 8 kids without systems - and spending time celebrating her family.


  1. Regina on April 15, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    Oh my goodness! If it is asbestos, praise the Lord that these men found this first before you moved in with all of your family and were exposed to such a dangerous thing! Honey, I pray for you and your beautiful blended family every day. And I love the idea that you guys pray and laugh your way through the situations. Because after all, man makes plans, but God years up that script and takes you in the path He wants you to go. Just take a deep breath , watch for God’s guidance, and follow through. In the end it will all work out. There is a reason for all this crazy chaos! What is it? Who knows but God, who has everything under control. You and your fiance amaze me with your love of the Lord and what you’re doing to try to connect and become one family. But most of all I’m very proud of the way the two of you follow God. He will honor this. In the meantime , if I wasn’t in the middle of trying to settle an estate,and fighting health issues, I would love to help you pack. If I find a day that I’m free I will let you know and help if I can. In the meantime know that here in my household we are all praying for you, and are very proud of the beautiful woman that you are!I love you dear sweet girl and your family. I hope someday to meet that beautiful man of yours and his children. In the meanwhile , you have many prayer warriors praying for your whole family . Keep looking UP☝

  2. amaywilson on April 15, 2017 at 12:59 pm

    How can I help best????

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