Welcome to Extra Grace Required

September 9, 2016

I’m so glad you’re here! Grab a cup of coffee and relax while we visit.

In March, 2016, my husband died after a long, terrible, debilitating illness. His neurological disease took a once healthy, strong and charismatic young husband and father and slowly stole everything from him except his faith in God and his love for his family. Before his death, my entire life revolved around caring for him and our children. He was my greatest gift, my best friend, and my emotional, financial and spiritual support – but now he’s gone. We were a homeschooling family who honestly enjoyed being together every day. I know. Crazy, right? So much has changed since then… in fact, everything has changed.

That same year, my kids headed off to public school. Lolo hopped on a bus to Middle School, Gman went off to 3rd grade and Beanie finished up her last semester of college. They are scared, excited, sad and nervous.

And then there’s me. The first day of school I found myself in an empty and quiet house. The silence was deafening and my heart was lonely. I’m faced with the brutal uncertainty of what’s next in my life. My job description reads past tense: Former wife, caregiver and homeschooler. I don’t have a clue what the next chapter is for me. I am afraid, lack confidence and just want my old life back. This website marks the beginning in my journey to figuring out what’s next.

Would you like to follow along? This is an invitation to join my family as we try to put one foot in front of the other, seeking God’s plan for our lives, searching out His purpose for the days ahead. I pray the sharing of our truth encourages you where you need it most. Sometimes it’s sure to be funny, sometimes it will be sad. Sometimes it will be ugly and sometimes beautiful. It will be our honest, raw and authentic account of our new life. And you can be sure that there will be “Extra Grace Required.

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  • Reply Eileen Boggess September 9, 2016 at 6:29 pm

    Jodi, thank you for creating this beautiful website. You are an amazing person and your words will help heal many people also going through the heartbreaking journey of grief.

  • Reply Jan September 9, 2016 at 6:44 pm

    What a witness you are my friend! Thank you for sharing your journey and helping us all realize together we can not only survive but with grace appreciate life!

  • Reply Stacy September 9, 2016 at 7:04 pm

    So proud of you, Jodi! You and your family are loved by so many. You can and are doing so many things you didn’t know you could. Proud of you, my friend.

  • Reply Allyson September 9, 2016 at 10:36 pm


  • Reply Jamie September 9, 2016 at 11:12 pm

    You are such an inspiration, I love you my friend.

  • Reply Krista September 10, 2016 at 10:12 am

    I am loving the “what we are talking about” (which currently has a great list including urinals), and the instagram picture bar. So lovely.

  • Reply Karen Underdahl November 18, 2016 at 12:03 pm

    Jodi, this is a wonderful site and will be so beneficial to so many as well as to you! The support will be a two way street! Thanks for inviting me to subscribe to your wonderful page! Great way to stay in touch! I wish you the very best always and I know that God has a special plan for your life, it may not be easy but great things will unfold through your faith and love!

    • Reply Extra Grace Required November 18, 2016 at 1:51 pm

      Thank you for being here, Karen. Thanks in advance for sharing with anyone you know who may relate.

  • Reply Laure Marino March 29, 2017 at 10:10 pm

    Thank you for allowing me (and millions of other total strangers) to walk this most intimate journey with you. We will collectively get up each day and do our best. You keep writing, I’ll keep sending you love, energy,peace and confidence.

    • Reply Extra Grace Required March 30, 2017 at 11:58 am

      Millions? I love your optimism! Thank you for taking the time to not only read Extra Grace Required, but to leave such a kind and encouraging comment. Thank you!

  • Reply Kerry Schafer October 26, 2017 at 11:36 am

    Thank you for sharing. I too am recently widowed. It is helpful to see others are feeling the same way. I’m finding that there is no “normal” way to grieve.

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