Wednesday, January 21, 2015

It's a mad mad world.

I am not one for change and I sure as heck don't like to take risks. Trust me, I am not the one you take to Vegas to make crazy blackjack decisions with then proceed to bungee jump off the Hoover Dam right after. I am the one who will meet you by the pool at 10am with two pina coladas and a cabana boy to lotion up your backside and bring us more pina coladas. So when it comes to gambling on the business and the future of the business etc. I tend to take the safe road every time. Besides, someone has got to stick to that resolution of intention. I guess this is why I am the bookkeeper and not the decision maker.

Here is why.  

Dave and I originally bought this property with the intention that we would have everything together all in our very own little compound. Work, home, chickens, kids etc. etc.. Big huge honking decision to move out of town and "buy a farm."The one thing that sold us about this property was that it came with a 40x60 shop for Summit to operate out of. Ok, I am lying it was the barn actually for me. But seriously, the shop has been great and is home to all of the space we could ever need in addition to the outdoor corral to store materials. Our office was in the house until a year or so after I had Calla, then we recognized we needed more space. So we renovated the barn. Downstairs is still the original dairy operation straight out of the 1950's. Glass pipes, stainless steel tanks and all. Upstairs is our office. All be it a bit chilly on windy days like today, it is the perfect homey space for us to be creative and "pretend" to actually separate work from home. Then India made her appearance in this world and the girls shared a room. That was working just fine, but the 1 bathroom situation was getting old quick once she was out of diapers. So we decided after 10 years of talking about it to go forward and make our tiny 900 sq. ft. 1 bathroom farmhouse into a 2400 sq. ft. 3 bathroom farmhouse. (I am still trying to figure out how we go through an enormous amount of toilet paper each month now, but that is beside the point).

We are happy as clams, peaches, insert whatever food you choose these days. But because we are business owners we are constantly striving to make things better for our clients. Be it the experience, the process, or pretty much the whole shebang. There is always that tick in the back of our mind that says we can take it one step further. January is our strategizing month. The one where we pick apart what we did last year and tweak it to be that much more efficient, easier etc.. It could be as simple as a job work order, what color to paint the barn door upstairs, or how to get guys and equipment to the job site daily. For example, one of the things we are currently working on is merging the work/client relationship with our shop and barn. Nothing crazy, just making it a bit easier for our clients to pick out materials, and colors to help them see the big picture. More on that to come later. But every once in a blue moon one of us comes up with an idea so crazy and different from our competitors it requires a bit longer discussion to see if it would even work.   
FYI the barn door is now Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze:) 
Let me explain how our creative process works. First, Dave and I get geared up to sit down and talk about an idea. Occasionally along the way during the process we throw things at each other. Next, we rip apart the idea. Let it go. Come back to it. Possibly go "Office Space" on the ink jet printer while discussing it. (#not it ) Throw in a trip to an Industry Convention in Denver in the middle of it all which typically motivates us, but this year actually made us question what were convinced would work. Sometimes, we talk about an idea civilly over chips and salsa and beer and margaritas. But afterwards, we proceed to throw everything previously discussed in the trash because the beer and tequila told us to. Only to have a brilliant idea come to one of us at 1 am. This is when we usually get super excited and make it happen. 

Meet Epson. He will print 13x19 color landscape design plans wirelessly in my office once I unpack him.   
 Now you see why I don't like taking risks. Big decisions, and changes are exhausting and leave me "hung over" for lack of a better term. In the end they are always the right decisions, but damn it makes my brain hurt. 

Tomorrow Dave and I are going to take that big shiny crazy idea so different from everyone else that we have been mulling over and over and roll with it. Literally….. roll with it. I am excited, nervous, and still a bit hesitant, but I know it is the right decision. Please cross your fingers and say good juju, and hope all goes well. The gentleman I spoke with yesterday said the whole thing was serendipitous. 

In the meantime while I sit on my hands and wait patiently like a good little girl waiting for her hippopotamus on Christmas morning (thanks Michele), the kids and I plan to make cookies like we did last week. It is our new thing. Here's to hoping I don't nervously eat them all before tomorrow. If I do, it is because the tequila told me to. 

P.S. Here's a hint! Stay tuned.  

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Vintage Whites Market

So this is happening Friday night and all day Saturday.

Dave and I are heading out to the Ranch on Friday night with pre bought tickets. Yup, taking him on a date. He will love it. Until I start buying things that is.  

Who knows? Maybe it will inspire me to dust off some of the stuff I have been hoarding out in the ol' dairy barn from my previous life as a dealer of antique garden ornaments and such and get back in the game. What….wasn't every new college graduate an antique dealer?

Oooh maybe say with a Summit Barn twist thrown in for fun and good measure? 
Anyway, moving on. ;)

Or, it may bite me in the butt and make me want to buy all.the.things for the farmhouse we have no room for because I have a shopping problem and we have plenty already. 

Not to worry though, I am very good about justifying things and why they need to come home with me. Case in point, it is how I ended up dragging a ridiculously heavy behemoth of a vintage Fridgidare home from Denver to live in the mudroom and store things like sunscreen and dog shampoo.

Let's just say my Father still curses me for what it took to get it back to Fort Collins. Picture in your mind us shoving it into my Mother's SUV already full with 4 adults and 2 small kids, in bucket car seats and my BOB stroller. No truck of course because A. that would be too practical, and B. there was no plan to buy said fridge. (Never is for the good stuff!)  It wasn't pretty folks, and I'm sure it was somewhat illegal. I blame the Fridgidare. It told me it to do it! 

I want to know what your favorite thing you have ever brought home from an antique show/flea market was? Oh and, if you end up going to the show, message me and we can share a cupcake. I'd be happy to help you justify some purchases before you take them home!


Tuesday, January 6, 2015

New Year New Blog Design

So if you haven't noticed I did a little house cleaning here on the blog this week. 
I caught myself looking back on how this little blog started and also realized that India Rose will be 5 years old tomorrow. When I started the blog she was a teeny tiny baby. This is how she looks today.

WOW! (Damn I'm getting old!)

It got me thinking how much has changed since then. We have added onto our business, and onto our farmhouse. We have grown in many ways. On that note, I have declared that this year will be the year of Intention. Before you go thinking I will get all philosophical on y'all and make you question what the heck blog you are reading. Or wonder if I had some sort of spiritual awakening while on my flu meds over the holidays and then had the word "Intention" tattooed it on my arm, I didn't. (hum….tempting though!) Long story short, I want to basically cut out the crap and do things with intent. I want to slow down, simplify everything, and make things easier each day so we can enjoy it more. More intent, less running around like a chicken with my head cut off. Make sense? Also I am beginning to realizing I can't control All.The.Things! Yeah, this one is hard. But I am learning.

As far as this blog is concerned, I have come to the realization that because I can't do it all, I just won't. I don't get to blog as often as I would like, but that is ok. The posts won't be as long and rambling, and there may not be as many pictures, but hopefully this new design will let me keep things a bit more clean and intentional. (Get it? Hah!) I plan on catching everyone up with the farmhouse renovation and all the fun things we made for it like that door up there. As well as keeping you up to speed with the  stories, events, and projects we have on the docket for this year. There may be some overlap between this blog, the Summit blog, and my Instagram. But hey, the more the merrier right? 

If you get a min. send me a quick message and let me know what you think of the new design and my whacked out concept.  


Friday, May 30, 2014

If you give a dancer a margarita

If you give a dancer a margarita, she will need some chips and salsa to go with it.  

When you give her the chips and salsa, she devours the whole salty bowl and washes it down with the margarita. 

So she realizes she might be a little bit hungry,  

and a little tipsy,

 and should just order some food instead.   

But then she can't decide.  

Lobster macaroni, chili rellenos, and street tacos please! 

Wait a minute……what about all of the cheese? 

She will remember she can't eat that much cheese,

and figures that the cucumber lime gazpacho is a safer bet.

But the gazpacho comes out more like pico de gallo.  

How is she supposed to eat a bowl full of pico de gallo with a spoon?

She doesn't know, and chooses to chat with her dancer friends instead.  

Suddenly out of nowhere, the waiter appears behind her to refill the chips and salsa. 

The dancer has a brilliant idea. 

Why not use the chips and dip them into the gazpacho like pico de gallo?

This is the perfect match, and she finishes the chunky soup with a whole bowl of salty chips.

But the salty chips will make her thirsty, and will need to wash it all down her margarita.

But then she remembers her margarita is gone.  

So she will ask the waiter for another one.  

And chances are good, if you give her another margarita, she'll want more chips and salsa to go with it.  

Note: This is very VERY loosely adapted on the book "If You Give A Cat A Cupcake," by Laura Numeroff who has no clue who I am, but her fabulous book gets read to my kids each week!)

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Teacher Gifts

So I have been struggling to figure out what to give the teachers at the girl's school as a thank you gift for the end of the year. I of course began to think about this on Monday. Last weekend my Mother and I were at a wedding in NC.
My dress is from Rickshaw Design. Very Very comfy in the humidity!
Did I mention school is out today, Thursday! Yet again flying by the seat of my pants! Work has been crazy busy with details and such. (Not complaining, just stating!) So I haven't exactly been able to put my Martha Stewart hat on and troll Pinterest for hours looking for that perfect gift. Calla loved all of her teachers this year and wanted to do something a bit more then give a bag of M&M's and a Starbucks card. Fyi, if anyone wants to give me a bag of M&M's and a Starbucks card, I would love you till the sun goes down. But she wanted it to be more personal.

Cue last nights trip into town to pick up the small child named after a large county, aka India. A stop later at Tarjet Boutique and the liquor store and we were done. Now, when I put out there on Facebook that I was thinking of giving wine and booze to the teachers it was met with mixed opinions. I decided to take the safe road and didn't give the wine and booze to the elementary school teacher, I am instead giving it to the ballet teachers! I have completely different relationships with the ballet teachers and they are my personal friends. Some for over 20 years. After I stumbled across these cute insulated wine bags, that task was crossed off the list.
 Back to the 2nd grade teacher. On the shelf next to the wine coozie thingy was a cute insulated cooler tote bag. Smaller then a giant cooler, bigger then a lunch box. The whole gift is perfect for a picnic in the park or a day at the lake…… kids. We stuffed it full of goodies like a Godiva chocolate bar, lemon lip balm, a matching tumbler, a magazine, sunscreen, and a towel. Lastly we included a nice handwritten note by Calla, as suggested by a teacher friend, telling her how much she enjoyed having her as a teacher this year.
Sorry I wasn't able to get a picture of the bag and all of its contents but it wasn't until I jumped out of the car to let her out in the infamous drop off lane, that I thought to take a picture. I figured I deserved to hold up traffic to get my damn picture since I have spent all year fighting these crazy people who wash faces, finish homework, breakfast, you name it in the drop off lane each morning. You get the idea.

With this weekend being Memorial Day, we decided to be nice bosses and give the guys the day off. Ok, we all know I am just being selfish and want this stinkin' house final inspected. If we can get it together, we might just be able to finish off all of the nagging items to get the cert. of occupancy and get moved in and buttoned up on trim. My lovely Father has been here all week helping us finish up on the staircase. So so close.
Anyone have plans for Memorial Day? Fun plans so I can live vicariously through you? I am staying home and unburying myself from the mounds and mounds of laundry overtaking the bedrooms. It is a bit obscene. I'll spare you the photos. I also have tons of annual flowers for one of our jobs to plant. I might take the extra I order for our shop every year and get the pots planted up.

Have a great weekend!

Monday, April 14, 2014

Goodnight Dancers

In the great big theater there was a performance. 
And a red tutu and a cow jumping through the wings. 
And there were 3 girls dancing with chairs. 
And two little chickens, and a pair of silver mittens. 
And a comb and a brush and a dance bag full of stuff. 
And a quiet lady backstage whispering "hush." 
Goodnight theater, goodnight wings, goodnight cow jumping through the wings. 
Goodnight lights, and the red tutu. 
Goodnight girls, goodnight chairs. 
Goodnight chickens and goodnight silver mittens. 
Goodnight comb and goodnight brush. 
Goodnight nobody.
 Goodnight dance bag full of stuff, and goodnight to the quiet lady backstage whispering "hush." Goodnight snow. 
Goodnight air. 
Goodnight dancers everywhere.

The show is over. 
I am both sad and happy. Sad my body won't get the skipping workout on a regular basis, and happy my body won't be doing the skipping workout on a regular basis. Calla did an amazing job, not one bobble, and I ended up with a fat lip from smacking faces with one of my partners during a fake kiss at the last show. Pretty sure my fellow dancers won't forget me yelling onstage in our twirling flying pinwheel lift, "Is my nose bleeding?!?!" Geeze Louise ballet isn't supposed to be brutal. But we all suffer for our art right? Haha! So now it is back to regular classes and helping the kids rehearse for their Spring Recital. Back to working on the house, and hopefully finishing it sooner then later.  

For those of you who aren't on Facebook or Instagram here are a couple of pics. Sorry I didn't manage to get one of the cow, or the chicken, but you can just use your imagination. Also, it appears going through my photo feed that Dave taught India how to ride the motorcycle while we were gone. In her pjs. Wonder how she reaches the pedals? :)  

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Hee Haw Train

I am not 100% certain where the weekend went, except it is long gone. I am now here swamped on Wednesday with Calla at home on Spring Break and a ton of work to do. Poor child. One of these days we will take a proper Spring Break. One involving a trip somewhere like all of the pictures I see normal families doing. But since we aren't normal and neither is our work schedule, she gets to hang out with her dear old Mom in her office at home all day. All week. 

Back to this weekend. Because I am pretty sure you would rather hear about that then all of us trekking it to the dentist to have our teeth cleaned. So Saturday I took a ride upon the Hee Haw Train. Meaning we got our costumes for the Gala for Hoedown and I can't lie, I am a little bit excited to be wearing gingham and lace a la Maryann from Gilligan's Island. Giant lace ruffle coming to the bottom of those blue skirts my friends! Not your average tutu here. 
My head is currently swimming with all sorts of large hair ideas involving braids, multiple cans of Aqua Net and a teasing comb thanks to a late night session with my dear friend Pinterest. And of course the brightest reddest lipstick I can find in my makeup bag. It might come out looking perfect or like a drag queen in training. I realize I am skating a very fine line between the two here with this look.

Rehearsal took a bit longer then expected because of the costumes.
So we did what any other dancer, young or old, does with too much time on their hands. Took really bad selfies of ourselves. My friends made fun of me when I smiled so I told them to look goofy. Yeah they didn't. Thanks people.
Moving on. The dipshit dingo dog has found himself a new home. My Dad and Dave built the newel posts for the staircase this past weekend so everyone played outside. Rusty planted himself at the top of the dirt pile and stayed there until the girls told him to move in whatever game they were playing. Pretty sure he thought it was king of the mountain.
Found him like that the next day when they were outside too. Not playing a game this time. He didn't get the memo and planted himself up there anyway.
The staircase is almost done!
The white oak treads have been handmade and are ready to be stained. Posts are primed and ready to be painted a semigloss white. There will be an oak cap on the top of the post. FYI: there is not a table in that space. Nope you didn't see any table there. You saw NOTHING in that area we don't have a final for yet. We aren't using the bathrooms either. I mean, why would we do that, we don't have permission to. Definitely don't use those. :) 
We decided to go with a white turned baluster. Bonus is they are already painted. I have NO desire to paint 100 balusters. And those are not handmade either. We are not Norm Abrams here, and since I don't have an Amish carpenter or Vanilla Ice dressed as an Amish carpenter on staff, Lowes it is.

Dave wasn't kidding when he said the staircase would be the first thing in the new addition and the last thing finished. 

Picking up new baby chickens at the feed store today.  Happy Hump day!