Whiskey For My Men, Beer for My Desk

9:48pm. At my desk. Answering emails. Completely smashed. (just kidding about that -- it's just one beer, y'all.) If you know the blog title reference to a certain country song (Traci), then consider yourself country kin and a Willie Nelson fan.

Tomorrow I'll be cussing because I won't be able to find my favorite tape measure or the foam rollers. I'll mistakenly think I left them in a convenient spot like my WORKSHOP.


Wood, Wednesday, and a Whale of a Headache

My head is throbbing this morning. Not sure if it's the fact I weeped for an entire hour watching the special on Randy Paush last night or that I've inhaled enough sawdust to make a whole new Patrick chair. Yes, I'll be better about using my mask today. :)

But one things for sure. It's gonna take A LOT of coffee and motivation for me to get going this morning. I'll be running out to Rockler woodworking store for more supplies while our babysitter keeps the kids happy...and thankful they too didn't have to go to Rockler...again. I've gotta say, I really do love having some help in the kid arena and it's certainly increased my production speed. I've always known it's near impossible to work from home and not have help with the kids in order to keep your sanity. And to make sure they're getting what they need out of their day. Sadly, like most work-from-home moms, it's not something I can do on a regular basis because it defeats the point of working from home because it takes away from my income. On an ad sales exec salary, sure, it works. But on a furniture builder salary, not so much. It's one of those catch 22s.

I get asked how I do it quite a bit. And by do it, I mean fit it all in with kids. I always tell them there's no way I could be doing this if my kids were younger than 3 and if I didn't occasionally have a total breakdown day and do nothing but watch Tivo'd shows and eat brownie batter from the bowl. I feel very lucky to be in the position I'm in so as hard as it is sometimes (with a pounding headache), I really feel so grateful for every moment of it.


Minor Details on Her Favorite Etsy Picks

I just found this great article today written by Jenn, from Minor Details. Jenn has been wonderfully supportive of my furniture from the start and has even been kind enough to give her opinion/notes on The Bertie Box before I set it up for sale on my shop...and other shops.

If you're in search of really cool kid stuff, check out her website and check out this article. There are some really great finds here!!

Saturday Morning

It's so very quiet with everyone still slumbering away. I LOVE this time in the morning when I get up to pretend I'll go work out and then I surf the internet for useless information. And then realize I haven't posted on the blog for a few days. So here I am!

Can I just say that Life in the Garage with a wonderful babysitter on Thursday from 11-4 was absolute HEAVEN! It's the first time since I started the business that I've hired a babysitter. Mainly, because of the money. But since orders are up tremendously and I've overbooked myself by committing to build four pieces per week, it was inevitable. And one of the best freakin' things I've ever done. I love the feeling of working and not being pulled in two directions. I had forgotten how nice it is to just concentrate on work without worrying about what's up for lunch...are they doing something educational...how much time do I have before Grace wants to swim. Seriously, work felt like a vacation. So for the next three weeks, 5 hours a day on two days of the week, I will be on vacation while building 16 new pieces of furniture.


Hodge Podge

I'm back in my seat waiting for a few things to set up with glue. And my feet hurt so I'm taking a break. Here's a list of things I've been meaning to post about but can't devote the time to posting each one individually before I have to get back to the garage.

  1. Bump Babies mentioned Mod Mom Furniture as one of their favorites. Check out this link for all the listing plus all the other favorites: http://www.bumpbabies.com/love.html

  2. UPDATE: Ok, so two days into it and I ended up hiring a babysitter to take some of the pressure of me being pulled in every direction. So she'll come for a few hours a week so I can run to the lumber yard, build furniture without being interrupted 400 times, and basically, help me better manage the fact that I stupidly schedule double the amount of items (4-5 per week) to be built with both kids on summer break and no childcare. I'm a smart one, I am.

  3. Here's a photo of a piece I finished before I left on vacation. I really had a good time building this one. If you've been following this blog for awhile, you'll recognize it as a Mick Toy Box with 3/4 inch ply.

  4. Thanks so much to Heidi Gregory for posting a very nice review/recommendation for my furniture after purchasing and receiving the Owyn and the Bertie. Go here for the link: http://community.babycenter.com/post/a568015/storing_toys_in_living_spaces

I have some cool custom jobs coming up in the next few months. I'm excited to share them with you! But for now, I have to get back out there while the kids are happily playing computer games.


We're BACK!

I clearly suck when it comes to posting photos that I said I'd post. Sorry about that. We landed in LA on Saturday night around 8:30pm and are happy to be home. We had a great time and I could go on and on about it but I have to get my head back in the game again.

I'll be building four pieces this week while my kids are home with me asking every hour if we're going to do something fun. I'll try to have some sort of fun activity planned to give them something to look forward to while I encourage them to enterain themselves (aka, ignore them) for multiple hours during the day. But if you work from home, you know how that goes. All the while you're at the "fun" activity you're thinking about the multiple sheets of plywood you have to cut on your table saw before it gets dark so you don't disturb the neighbors.

But I'm a new woman and I'm determined to work AND have fun with my kids all at the same time!

I'm sure I'll be writing later this week, while throwing back a gin and tonic, that we've all been reduced to tears and I've hired some random high school kid to do fun things with my kids while I cut wood.


Kentucky Woman

We're having a great time in Louisville as we near the end of our East Cost Tour. Meme and Papa, Scott's parents, have been wonderfully gracious and are enjoying every minute they can with their sweet grandkids. I'm enjoying the no-smog skies and nightly walks in a their very quaint subdivision with miles and miles of bluegrass. But I have to say, these mosquitos out here are as big as my head! We're coming back to LA with the tale tell signs of a midwestern summer: bug bites. I just found one on my face. That's always nice. By tomorrow, I'll really look like I'm from LA with a bite that looks like a cheek implant.

Look for photos tomorrow....of Louisville. Not my faux cheek implant.


The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio

As you know from my last post, we're visiting my parents in Defiance, Ohio (the same town from the book and movie, The Prize Winner of Defiance, Ohio.) I grew up here from 5th grade through 12th and during most college breaks. I officially flew the coop in 1995 when I moved to Charlotte, NC.

Anyhow, I figured I'd share some photos I've taken of the town, the country, and the fishin':

This is where I grew up! My parents moved into a lovely new home in town about 4 years ago but I still occasionally check up on my old house out in the country. I rode my Dad's bike out to our old stomping ground yesterday to take this photo. The house sits out on the river (well, across the street from the river). Lots of good memories there. See that garage? That's where Mod Mom started tinkering with wood. And that driveway? That's where Mod Mom made out with her high school boyfriend in his car when he dropped her off at home after school...until the neighbors told my parents. Ah, the memories.

There's no way I could show the town without showing the football stadium...for the HIGH SCHOOL. If you watch Friday Night Lights on tv, you have an idea of how big high school football is in our town. My dad, a former head football coach at many schools, is coaching again part-time for Defiance High School this year. Go Bulldogs!!

We went fishing one day -- a first for Little G and Noah! Grandpa was a champ putting on all the worms and taking the fish off the hook. I tried but I just couldn't do it. A table saw is so much less intimidating than a wet fish dangling from a hook. Both G and N caught multiple fish. Dad and I caught nothing. Well, I caught a tree once.

This is the power dam out by my old house. They even named the street after it. I just think it's such a cool building. And the dam isn't bad either. :) Damn, that's a nice dam!! I'm sure there is and was a lot of pot smoking and underaged drinking that goes on down below on those rocks. But not by me, no sir!

How gorgeous is this photo?! Corn fields for miles. I remember as a kid, after the movie Children of the Corn came out, my sister and I would ride very quickly past the corn fields and breathe a heavy sigh of relief when we made it past without the evil children getting us.

I took photos of the downtown but lost them so I may just take some more before we head to Scott's parents in Louisville and pass them along. Defiance is a great little town in the middle of farm country. A very nice place to grow up...if you don't get caught by the Children of the Corn.



Last night, after surviving the tornado, I was surfing the internet trying to make myself tired after the excitement of the day. I was thrilled to find one of my favorite Etsy sellers had written a nice post about my furniture. Chad, or BaldManMod, is a talented artist and builder in his own right, and someone I've enjoyed chatting with over email a few times. Check out his very cool mid-century table design that he recently put on his Etsy store.

Many thanks to Chad for this great post! And congrats on your new baby on the way! Now you can call yourself BaldManModDad.


Somewhere Over The Rainbow

There's been family, food, laughter, football, shopping, a TORNADO, more shopping, an animated movie I didn't have to watch with the kids :). Ok, Ok, I'll back up to the TORNADO part. So around 1:30pm today, after being out on a football field watching my Dad coach and Grace and Noah sit on the ground and dig in the dirt and complain about the Ohio heat and humidity, we came back to Mom and Dad's house for lunch. And apparently, a tornado. Mom sees on the TV that a tornado watch was in affect for our town and quickly gathers supplies for our safe place (thankfully a basement complete with tv, mini-fridge, pool table, air hockey table and ping pong table.) Then the town's tornado sirens start going off. Now, when I was growing up here, we lived way out in the country so we never heard the sirens. This was a first for me and I have to say, the most surreal part of the whole thing.

Down the stairs we went into the country club of tornado bunkers. The hail starts, the heavy winds, the rain, the very loud thunder. All of it crashing down on the house for a good 20 minutes. And then it was over. Just like that. And we went back to our normal lives, the sun came out, we went to dinner and Grace lost her first tooth.

And it was like it never even happened. One thing's for sure. I'm SOOO glad my parents moved into a house with a basement. And that Mom knows how to pack for a tornado , i.e., bring downstairs , into the bathroom-less basement, a big bucket and three rolls of TP. I suggested vodka but it never made its way downstairs. That was probably for the best, wasn't it.


Weekly Update

Last week: Build 8 toy boxes/pieces of furniture till I almost puked.

This week: Glad to have flown into Defiance, Ohio with the kids on a red-eye to spend time with my parents and later in the week, Scott's parents in Louisville, KY. It's the "kids are off school so get your ass back East" trip.

I am working working from here via email/laptop. So please know I'm not slacking off too much!


The Family Room -- It's Not Just For Families

Tonight, after working in the garage all day, I carried in three pieces that need to be sealed with polyurethane. And then I kicked the family OUT of the family room so I could polyurethane while watching Tivo'd shows like Can You Duet on CMT and the late George Carlin's last comedy special not on CMT. This has become a part of my construction routine because it allows me to work late, sit on a rug and inevitably spill poly on the said rug, and watch TV with my husband.

I thought you'd get a kick out of what my family room looks like at this very moment, 10:14 p.m. on Tuesday night.

Back to George Carlin and one more coat of poly. Maybe I'll even shower tonight!! It's a big night!!