It is with deep feelings that I write this, but it has been some time coming. As of now, I am entering a state of semi-retirement with flashlight reviews. I will no longer be accepting new lights to review without direct prior authorization. All the lights I currently have awaiting review will still fall under the old agreements, but beginning today I am acknowledging that I need to take a step back.
This has been a wild ride. Back in 2007-2008 I first got started in this endeavor and couldn’t have been happier. I enjoy writing. I like flashlights. I love helping people and spreading information. Those are all still true. The differences are all personal. When this began, I was married with one child. Though he needed some special attention, it was very easy for my wife and I to easily manage everything with loads of time to spare. We both took up flourishing hobbies that occupied a fair amount of time. I was also working in a position where I had ample time to grab a paper or keyboard and hammer out my thoughts on lights on a very regular basis.
Much has changed since the early days. In 2011 we opened our home to become foster parents of children in need of care. That has been an incredible blessing to us, to be allowed to love on kids whose only fault was being in a bad situation. Many of these kids were with us a short time before moving on to other care. They were starting to take up a lot of my extra time, however. I didn’t mind this, but it was about then that my review regularity began to suffer. In late 2013 however we adopted 4 children who would not be moving on to any other care. These are 4 beautiful kids who I now get to call my own. They had a rough start though, so they need lots of extra attention, both medically and emotionally. In 2015 we again took in another young child as foster parents, and that is rapidly progressing toward adoption as well.
So in the years between starting this hobby and now, my small, compact family of 3 has blossomed to a robust family of 8, with many small children, and none without special needs of some sort. Last I checked there haven’t been any infusions of extra hours in the day to help accommodate these changes. Also, my working environment has advanced to where I do not have any option to continue writing at any point there. While I wouldn’t trade my situation for the world, it does take its toll on my hobbies.
When I first started the website, it didn’t take long before I was able to secure a couple of trusted manufacturers who wanted to advertise. This helped defray the costs of running the site at the time, and gave me a little buffer for the future, as well as helping with things like batteries, and chargers (which almost never came included with the early lights). Now, with my waning participation, my site hasn’t been supporting itself for a number of years now, despite fairly consistent traffic throughout that time. Though understandable, it is disappointing.
With all of these factors added together, it is time I acknowledge facts. For the present, I am unable to continue any kind of regular updates, instead relying only on sporadic and occasional posts. Since that’s no way to run a business and responsibly represent the companies who come to me, it’s time to step back.
I’m not closing down the site. For the foreseeable future I will keep it up. It will simply receive far fewer updates (as has already been happening), and I will not be accepting any further review lights without making sure my plate is empty first.
I want to thank all of your for being part of this journey. For now, keep poking your head in. I’ve still got a few lights left to write up. Who knows, maybe down the line my schedule will lighten enough that I can jump start things again. For now, this isn’t good-bye, but see you later.