When I last spoke about our plans for the future, TJ was going to be starting the training program for Edward Jones in February 2014, and I would be leaving my full-time job. We would be moving to Tempe/Chandler. Well, a few things have changed and some things haven't.
This summer, one of TJ's good friends interned for a company called AXA. They are a financial advising company similar to Edward Jones, but with a few fundamental differences in their business plan and approach. Well, Brooks gave TJ's name and number to his boss around August, and TJ got a call inviting him to come interview. At first, we were a little resistant to the idea. We had been set with a plan, and we didn't see any reason to change that. Then, TJ thought, "Why not?" It couldn't hurt to just interview and see what AXA had to offer.
As it turns out, they had a lot more to offer for us. Although I took some convincing, we eventually made the decision to accept a job from AXA and not go with Edward Jones. They are much more flexible and have a few key differences that we felt would be a better fit for TJ and for our family. TJ's "boss" will be his mentor for his first three years, and he's a really great guy. Although it wasn't the deciding factor, the fact that Ryan is LDS is a comfort because we know he has the same values that we do. Everyone that we've interacted with has been so personable and helpful, which is another comfort to us.
So where does that leave us? Well, our original plan only changes a little. TJ will be (and already is) studying for his licensing tests. As soon as two of those are taken care of, he will start with AXA. Our goal for now is the end of January. That will give him some time after graduation to really study and get the exam done. We will be moving in with his parents for about a month until we move to Phoenix. His office is in North Scottsdale, and we are trying to find housing within a reasonable distance without paying the Scottsdale housing prices. I will continue to work at my job and transition in my replacement(s) for a while, and possibly move down to part-time so that TJ has more time to study rather than taking care of Jake.
Another blessing to come of this is that I won't have to work. With Edward Jones, we were expecting that I might have to find part-time employment since the salary during training wasn't quite enough. However, Ryan is confident that TJ will do well enough that I won't have to work. I'm always willing to do my part, but this came as a great relief to both of us.
We are excited for this new path and new possibilities. With the flexibility of this company, we don't have to decide now where we will live forever (ha), and might find ourselves back in Flagstaff someday. For now, we are excited for the changes in many aspects of our lives. We feel very blessed to have had both of these opportunities presented to us, and grateful that we were able to choose the best fit for us. I know many don't have such options or opportunities, and it is humbling and exciting to see our hard work come to fruition.