The past couple of months have felt as a blur. Winter has proven to be a slow and challenging time of year to do any outdoor work, particularly relating to digging and pouring concrete. I originally had plans to work my two part time EMS jobs over the winter and resume fence work once the weather improved. However, I found that I would receive a slow but steady stream of requests for both installs and repairs that I mangled to support ourselves over the winter with little supplemental employment. With each client that contacted me about work during this time of year, I made sure to be forthright about my scheduling being at the mercy of the weather, particularly when concrete is involved. I found that every customer I did work for this winter was both very understanding and appreciative which has made this slow season a joy. Pictured below is a collection of photos highlighting the fence projects I completed this winter.
The slower winter season has brought with it more time with my family and time to pursue other activities that are of value to us. Though we lived on a tight budget, we stayed with in our means. Some of the personal projects I decided to tackle this winter included building our boys loft beds, a wood shed, removed a textured ceiling and painting the boys room, built bird feeders and a "Little Free Library" (still in progress) and helped with a neighborhood project that involved local children painting plywood signs with messages to help remind drivers to slow down. In addition to the projects, I also visited a Trappist monastery with a good friend, found time to both journal and write more as well as reading books by C.S Lewis and Thomas Merton as well as getting our oldest son hooked on the Harry Potter series. My wife Kaitlyn and I celebrated our 9 year anniversary in December and found out with much excitement that we are expecting a girl, baby #3 to be due on August 5th! Needless to say, winter this year has been busy but the busyness has centered largely around those I love and hold close. For the first time in my life, I feel that I have finally placed work and life into balance, my only hope is that I can maintain this balance as work increases this spring and summer. Pictured below is a series of pictures of life at home this winter.
As the ground thaws and daffodils bloom, I have noticed a sharp increase in calls for estimates. Currently, I have work scheduled till the middle of April which is both intimidating and exciting. Intimidating as I do not want to stretch myself to far, I only want be busy insomuch as I can provide for our needs and perform quality work while taking the time to know my customers. As I grow as a business owner, I am learning. Often by struggle, how to juggle the constant flow of calls and emails.
My goals for 2018 are to fill my schedule with a mix of new installation and repairs. Currently, I schedule a group of repairs between my installations so that I can focus all my attention on the install until its completed. I plan to take about a week off in May for a family vacation and then schedule full month of work in June. For July I plan to only take on small projects and repairs as I will need flexibility with Kaitlyn's due date of August 5th. I then plan to take most of August off and resume with a full schedule (I hope) in September through the remainder of the year.
If you're interested in hiring me, I hope you will send me an email or call. I am currently only working with wood and have limitations as to the size of the project (I have no employees so it must be something I can do in a reasonable time without help). I will make every effort to be transparent about my scheduling, costs and details of the project. Even if you're not interested in hiring me, I would value any feedback as to the website, blog and business.
Thanks for reading!