Sunday, June 30, 2013

For The Love of It

We are finally beginning to see the shop transform. The floors have been installed and we have begun to move equipment and furniture in. When I say "we" I really mean a little of me and and a LOT of Toby.

The past few weeks Toby has transformed into a living machine. The amount of work involved is overwhelming. When I watch him building his dream I see a part of him I never knew. He moves with purpose and dedication without faltering. His soul is on fire and it is absolutely BEAUTIFUL.

If this whole venture were to fail miserably and we ended up living out of a tent in a local park I would never regret saying YES! to the experience of witnessing someone living out their purpose and dreams with all their being. It is an unexpected and uncommon miraculous experience. I'm pretty sure that very few people have felt the sort of passion I have seen emanating from my mate...including myself. I would love to feel that much enthusiasm and passion coming from doing laundry or vacuuming floors.

“When we love, we always strive to become better than we are. When we strive to become better than we are, everything around us becomes better too.” ~ Paulo Coelho

Hard at work on the street sign
New flooring....

Bo says this is the most boring place he has ever been
Things are flowing nicely. Our projected opening date is July 5.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Chapter 2

If my blog were a book this would be the beginning of Chapter 2. Our lives have changed so much in the past year.

I mourn for the days gone of Chapter 1 but in turn feel very excited and hopeful for our next chapter.

Things have shifted for our little family. Lucas is a full grown man now living in his own recently purchased home building his own life and memories., and Skye is self-absorbed in her own personal life and activities....and we are starting our own family business.

All the legwork to open the shop has been done. Recording the business name, licenses, permits, ID#'s, etc. has been checked off the list.

The past week has been spent on the manual labor of prepping the floor for the wood laminate. Prepping the floor was mine and Skye's job. Skye has excellent work ethic and doesn't balk at helping out when we need her, which I might add I'm pretty proud of and I believe will be a positive aspect in her future endeavors.

Before I move on, here are some photos of the inside of the shop....

For the last week Toby has been camped out in our hot garage painting the shop sign. I've always admired my hubby but these past few weeks I have seen him in a light that makes me very proud that I chose him to live the rest of my days with.

Our shop....

And the man that's making it all happen.....

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Manning Our Own Boat

Time to let the cat out of the bag. Toby and I are opening our own tattoo shop on Hwy. 290 in Manor. Running his own shop has been a dream of Toby's ever since I have known him. A serious tattoo artist never feels truly successful until he owns his own shop.

I'll be honest, I'm one that believes "if it ain't broke then don't fix it". Over the years I turned my nose up at the idea of him opening his own shop every time he mentioned it.  For 10 years I successfully nipped his dream in the bud before it got out of hand. Bills were paid, kids were cared for, food was on the table, and I wasn't having to help make ends meet for minimum wage at the local grocery store. For my minimal living standards, I was living in the lap of luxury and I wanted to keep it that way.

But.....I love my husband very much and more than anything I want to see him (and us) as happy and successful as we have the potential to be. After all, just to make me happy he did agree to be dragged 500 miles from his comfort zone at my insistence that we would have a better quality of life in a more progressive, open minded, prosperous city.

Operating our own tattoo shop was not a decision that was made overnight or without careful thought. It just so happened that recently some circumstances and serendipity's, if you will, have opened the doors for us to embark on this endeavor sooner than what we anticipated.

When these occurrences first starting aligning themselves I was paralyzed with fear. I inherently knew the ride was about to begin and fear of the unknown took me by the hand. People hate it when they are unsure of something so they don't do anything. They stay frozen. They want to stay put where they believe it is safe and secure. In reality, we are never really safe or secure even if we think we are. Unsuspecting people "playing it safe" loose their jobs and security everyday.

The more I thought about it the more I realized that what I feared more than the fear of the unknown was the fear of failing to meet our highest potential as a family and partnership.  The fear that we would miss out on an opportunity that was calling to us. Did I really want to ignore my intuition and gut feelings? No.  I've done that before and have experienced the disastrous results of ignoring the voice inside of me.

I've also felt a little fire ignited in myself. I'm excited about being able to use my bookkeeping and management abilities that helped put food on my table and a roof over my head for many years before I met Toby. It will be nice to get acquainted with my brain once again.

Whatever the outcome I know this for sure. We will still be the same family we have always been, with just a  new life experience added to our belt notch.

We will survive.

Thursday, June 13, 2013


For the past couple of weeks we have been so busy with preparations and details for our new endeavor that I was feeling the need to spend some outdoors in nature. Nature always centers me when my brain feels overwhelmed.

We headed to Barton Creek for the afternoon. The spring water is always cold and refreshing after a hike along the trail and the views are always impressive no matter how many times I've seen them.

It's safe to say we all enjoyed our little break today....

On the way home at a stop light downtown I looked up at the sun reflecting off the tall buildings. It was beautiful so I grabbed my camera and snapped a quick pic before the light changed....

More random pics from the past couple of weeks....

Our bed has been taken over

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Do You Know Who I Am???

While browsing Pinterest the other day I came across a picture of one of those old VW the Scooby Doo van if you will, but bright yellow.

Every time I see one like it it brings me back to a memory of a night when I was around 18 years old.

At that time I was dating (and engaged to for a short time) a guy named Alan. I met Alan in the elevator of the hospital where I worked.  We both worked the evening shift. My job was transporting  patients by wheelchair to and from X-Ray, dialysis, etc. and other misc. duties like collecting T.V. rental monies. Alan worked in Shipping and Receiving. We sneaked in every chance we could at the snack bar, hallway or...the elevator. Because we worked 5 days a week in the evenings our weeknight dating was limited to the night owl hours.

Alan was a serious, preppy guy who casually wore Izod golf shirts or button-downs and pleated khakis. He also had future plans,  goals, and aspirations...refreshing but not my usual type of the time anyway.  Besides his good looks, I'm pretty sure what attracted me most to him was his black 1969 Fast Back Mustang. To this day, I have absolutely no idea what attracted him to me, the girl who listened to rap music, smoked cigarettes and wore clothes that closely resembled something hippies would wear.

After a year long courtship Alan  presented me with an engagement ring on Christmas Eve 1984.  Two months later by the end of January 1985 of the next year he decided that I wasn't good enough for him to marry and broke off our engagement. He was probably right. I loved muscle cars but I never played the preppy part very well. Even so, I would be lying if I said I wasn't a bit heartbroken.

Even so, thirty years later I still have a couple of love letters he wrote me and a few pictures of us at Dauphin Island where we hung out that summer of 1984 with our circle of  friends on his Hobie Cat Catamaran. Those times were some of the best in my memory bank of life...

Looking at my life now it's hard to believe there was ever a time I did something other than  laundry, dusting, and preparing meals for the better part of my day...

Sorry, I got a little sidetracked in my memories there. Anyway....

....Alan was a car guy. He had a souped up midnight blue Toyota truck with dark tinted windows he drove to work and a 1969 Fast Back Mustang that he drove for 'pleasure' and on the weekends.

One late night Alan was dropping me off at my house after a night out.  For whatever reason he always parked his Mustang on the curb when he came over. When he left I walked out with him to his car so we could say our goodbyes and get in our last smooch of the evening.

At that time Dave Straker, a local meteorologist lived across the street from us. He drove a bright yellow VW 'Scooby Van'.

As I walked with Alan out to his car 'Dave' was pulling out of his driveway across the street and proceeded to back right into Alan's Mustang. It was dark and very late at night and Meteorologist Dave hesitated for only a second before driving off.

Alan was cursing and hollering at 'Dave' as he drove away and I was like "Shhhhhh.....that's Dave Straker!" Alan said, 'I don't give a shit who it is he just hit my car!.'

I wonder: Did 'Dave' drive off because he was drunk and didn't realize he hit a vehicle? (it was very late at night) or did 'Dave' not even realize he hit something? Or was it because 'Dave' was 'Dave' and knew people in high places that could get him out of trouble??? I have no idea.

It's been so long ago I don't remember what ever came of the incident after that night...