10/24/11

The Mod Mom Furniture Adventure Ride!

I'm not even sure where to start this post.  Or if I even remember how to write one, it's been so long.  This past year has been a huge year of change for my family and my business.  HUGE change, I tell ya. We've endured so many peaks and valleys it really does feel like one of those adventure rides at the amusement park.  I don't normally throw up on those because I like the up and down but there have been more than a few times over the last year, I've wanted to throw up from both excitement and heartache.

The amount of change in the world is astonishing right now and in a very small way, we have the same kinds of change happening inside the walls of this house.  Now that I'm not building anymore, I'm pretty much glued to my broken Ikea swivel chair.  It's fantastic to have L&J Woodworking building for me now but there will always be a big part of me that loved the solitude of the garage.  The smell of cut wood.  And Toby Keith on a small radio.  I know I can steal moments of that while I'm designing new pieces out of scrap wood but for the most part, my job consists of sales and marketing, invoicing, accounting, forecasting, inventory control, customer service, and updating all the social media outlets.  I'm becoming an expert on international shipping, LTL Common Carrier rates, package research, Fed Ex tracking, and, well, you get the idea.  I am NOT bitching in the least but sharing the reality of growing a small garage business into an international brand.  It's a lot less saw dust and a lot more number crunching.  And far more work than what was required when I was building three toy boxes per week.  

Like a lot of families who've endured layoffs and salary cuts, we had to make the hard choice to pull our son Noah from his alternative learning school.   We just couldn't swing the payments and money for gas any longer (school was, on a good day, 30 minutes from our house).  He was in public school prior to his year last year at Alexandria but, for Noah, public middle school just wasn't a fit.  Noah and I are tackling online school together now which means I'm running a growing company and homeschooling at the same time.  We're both getting used to our roles but I won't lie and say there aren't days when I long for my old corporate office in Chicago where the coffee was made and I had a door that would shut.  And I know there are days he wishes I wasn't his teacher. There's a lot of, "Hon, do you understand the algebraic principle of blah blah blah? Kinda? OK, do these pages and I'll come back over in 20 after I call this distributor in Canada from the kitchen table."  I've never done so much multitasking in my life.  I know it will get easier for both of us but MAN, I hope it happens fast.  (As I'm writing this, my sweet husband is tackling a Language Arts assignment with Noah so I can work a bit.  Love that husband of mine.)

I've taken on other roles (or rather, they picked me) as well that I won't share but roles that mean a lot to me and have helped better me as a person. It's heavy, exhausting, tear-inducing work but I'm glad I'm a part of it. With all the change in the world, I feel lucky to have the kind of change we're experiencing but it doesn't mean I don't have moments in the day when I feel I'll never get to the top of the damn hill so I can coast for a bit.

Even if things don't play out the way I think they will, I know that this ride I'm on is all happening for a reason.  And boy have I learned A LOT this year about life, love, business, and 7th grade algebra.

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For new developments and giveaways from Mod Mom, check out http://facebook.com/modmomfurniture!

Here are just a few that happened recently...
Brookstone is now selling MMF!
And if you're in Hong Kong, you can buy MMF toy boxes at Jellybean!
And a recap from the ABC Kids Expo!
And my dad building my AMAZING trade show booth!
And lots more exclamation points!!!!!!!

4 comments:

Esther said...

Hang it there. It just sounds like all that hard work that successful people talk about having been through when they've made it big! And the whole mom/teacher job is the hardest and most important of all. I'm getting a headache just thinking about 7th grade algebra!

Mike said...

Put him to work doing business math for you. And once he moves up to trig, there's all sorts of woodworking applications.

Nan @ Playful Decor said...

Hey, welcome back to blogland! I'm preparing to open my biz and wanted to see your biz site and blog - this blog design is new isn't it? I hope you get to cruise soon and all that is still uncertain becomes settled. And huge kudos to you for taking on homeschooling!!

nate said...

Hi Mod Mod Furniture, your blog is very inspiring and very beautiful.