Friday, December 30, 2011

It's Who you Know

My mom used to always threaten me by saying, "you always need to be on our best behavior because you never know whose watching you". Or, at least I always took it as a threat until I recently had the revelation that it meant something a bit different. It wasn't the empty promise of having ninja assassin mothers on patrol waiting to catch me doing something terrible so that they could use their motherly network to tattle on me, but rather a wish. A wish that I would realize the impact we have on other people, whether we know it or not, to make a difference in their life.

Several months ago, I was introduced to this guy named Kristian who had just started his own visual production company (photo & video). Like me, he was a dad to two little ones that dreamt of starting his own business and help folks put their products (no matter what they were) in the best light. Unlike me, he jumped in both feet first and just did it (I owe Nike some royalties for that one). We stayed loosely connected, or rather, he persistently checked in with me to see how my improv aspirations were coming, how my wood chucking was, well... chucking, how my Food Truck ideas were actualizing. And, what he really did was set a great example for me. Nothing was going to happen unless I did it. Again, unless I did it. No one else was going to do it for me. They were only going to encourage me in hopes that I took the plunge. So I did, ever so cautiously but whole-heartedly, nonetheless.

This hapless meeting culminated with a photo shoot a few weeks ago. Kristian brought all of his Deep River Productions gear to the Phillips Phamily Estate to capture the final stages of a farmhouse table I was completing for delivery. He didn't have to, he wasn't asked to, he just did it (dammit, more Nike money). The point of my useless rambling this blog post is to say that here's a chance meeting, one of thousands that has turned into something much bigger. It's not always what you know, but who you know as well as how you endeavor to exist within that connection, that matters.

Take a moment to visit Deep River Productions, LLC: HERE

Keep on chuckin'!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Being awesome is hard work.

Having the best intentions is one thing; staying true to them is another. By the grace of God I recently started a new business (a side-project really, for now...) and with it, was committed to starting a blog. Yes, the one you are reading now. You know the one... a whopping 6 posts to date. How gloriously underwhelming of me, you say?

Yes, I agree.

Again, I had good intentions. Like many families these days, the economy his taking its toll on mine. And, we work really REALLY hard to make ends meet. Little does the economy know, my wife is from Jersey and was raised on Trans Ams & Springsteen. The first time I drove up to visit her in NJ, I was pulled over because my Bon Jovi sticker was expired... fuhgedaboudit.

So, we're committed (like any good family) to do whatever we can to improve the lives of our kids. I revel in getting the kids up and packing lunches in the morning, getting our daughter to the bus on time and our son to day care. Then it's off to work from 8am-6pm, sitting on the board for Win-Win Resolutions, back home and dinner in the oven (my wife works two three jobs and often we have opposite schedules). In all this whirlwind called "our life", why not start a small company that builds custom furniture out of wooden pallets?! But man do I love it! I get to be outside, with the kids, music playing, power tools roaring, chaos and mayhem and toasted cheese sandwiches, whoo!

Now, I just need a coach of some sort. Someone to point out the warning signs and successes so I don't miss either. Someone to encourage me to step into the abyss of entrepreneurship and offer a reassuring, "good luck" on the way out. Maybe it's not just one person, maybe it's many. Maybe it's Chuck Norris!

In all the ups and downs, there is a least one intention that I am committed too; a hearty laugh with others EVERY chance I get. That, and instilling in my children that, no matter how old you get or what situation you're in, "poop" is ALWAYS a funny word.

I'll get better at posting more pictures of projects soon. In the meantime, here is a before and after of 100+ year old barn wood. ALl I did was sand it, apply a wood conditioner and a clear Poly. It's truly amazing what can happen when someone take the time to brush the dust off...

Here's to life!