[heading]Photo by Spark Photography[/heading]

For J.M. and April Preston, life changed dramatically in 2009.

Visiting family in his hometown of Poway, J.M. was offered the future opportunity to buy his father’s local estate planning legal firm – the Law Offices of John M. Preston. “I was shocked,” said April, noting that J.M. was accepted to three law schools several years ago, but opted not to attend. “I knew our lives would change drastically. We’d be back in school, selling our business to be poor students again…but this time with two children? I had a panic attack, to say the least. But something inside me said maybe this was right.”

So the Prestons sold their rain gutter business, J.M. was accepted at California Western School of Law in San Diego, and they moved to Rancho Bernardo.

“After touring many neighborhoods, I chose Rancho Bernardo because it seemed most like home,” April said. “It felt like the residents here were proud of their community and kept it looking nice. We love our neighborhood and our neighbors. It was the right choice.”

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‘I knew our lives would change drastically.  But something inside me said maybe this was right.’

~April Preston, Rancho Bernardo

[/pullquote_right]April, now a stay-at-home mother of three, who also works as a contract print advertising designer for the Clorox Co., said she originally met J.M. while they both attended Brigham Young University. She graduated with a degree in visual arts, while he secured a degree in international studies.

Graduating in only two years instead of the conventional three-year timeframe, J.M. completes law school in August this year. He currently interns at his father’s firm, and plans to take the bar examination in early 2012.

The Prestons are parents to Carter, 5; Michael, 2; and Evelyn, nearing 3 months. The family loves boating, including wakeboarding and tubing in the summer. And they all love spontaneous family outings. “Last year we were watching the X Games on television,” April noted. “It was being broadcast from Los Angeles – and we both thought, wouldn’t this be fun to watch live? (That trip to LA) will be one of my favorite family memories. The boys loved it!”

April and J.M. are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, and both are quite involved. J.M. works with the young men’s group as a leader and teacher on Wednesdays and Sundays. April is also a leader and teacher twice a week, spending time with children ages 3-12.

Now settled and feeling at home in Rancho Bernardo and looking forward to J.M. becoming an attorney, April said the transition was right for the family and important for the children’s future – a priority for the couple. “We are a family of love and faith,” she said. “Family is always first.”