I came to CPYR in 2014 as an intern (they were called full-time volunteers back then). I honestly didn’t know what to expect when I came, but God had paved the way and I was walking down it, seeking what He had in store for me on the next step in my journey. There is no way I could have guessed He would provide me with two new families: the Ranch staff and a wife.
Xandra (I prefer to call her Xan) and I are both from different parts of Virginia, but met here at the Ranch. We were engaged and married before the end of my intern year…God’s timing is crazy, but we trusted Him. This took the idea of me staying in Central Oregon and made it a reality, but changed it so that I was building a home with a wife at my side.
Since I’ve been at the Ranch, God has provided a safe and encouraging haven to grow as an employee, an adult, and a mentor. My relationship with God is always challenged to go deeper by the godly focus and examples present at the Ranch.
My job is managing the Ranch’s schedule on a day-to-day basis (primarily during session time frames), which includes getting kids out for sessions. It’s a job full of puzzling “pieces” (times and people) together and trying to do so for the best of everyone involved. It’s a challenging role, but it’s also fun.
Have you ever had a favorite or unique pet?
I’ve grown up having pets (primarily cats and dogs, but also some hamsters, doves, and one rabbit), and many of them have had special places in my heart. However, at this point, my favorites are the three cats we currently have: Fili, Kili, and Abby. Fili and Kili are named after the dwarven brothers from The Hobbit: Kili is Mr. Personality and affectionately dubbed as a “dope” while Fili is more of a scaredy-cat with a very cute voice. Abby often looks like a gray grumpy owl, but she loves to snuggle. They bring a lot of laughter and joy to our hearts with their strange cat ways.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Reading is my biggest hobby. I love entering different worlds and stories set in fantastic and magical worlds (e.g. The Lord of the Rings). I am also hopefully working on being a published author of a fantasy fiction series or two.
Traveling and seeing more of this large, beautiful world God created for us to enjoy. Thus far I have been able to visit three countries on three different continents. Ireland is pretty amazing if you can go!
Pursuing friendship is a desire God has placed in my heart. It’s complicated figuring it out as an adult sometimes, but few things give me more pleasure and joy than time with a good friend.
What is one of the craziest or most fun things you have done on the Ranch?
God planned for me to meet Xan and propose to her on the Main Ranch. Only two months separated these two events. It sounds (and was) crazy and came with difficulties, but He is good and He has been faithful.