Did you know that you are my boss?
I work for you.
And this is me, in my boss's office, being convincing.
I love to work. I love what I do. And I'll be doing this hopefully for the rest of my life.
And I certainly can't turn off that part of my brain that wants to figure out how something is made ... and then go make it.
But up here in Alaska, we have such short summers. They start in June, and by the end of August, just some 75 days later, you start panicking, thinking, oh man, I just didn't get enough in this summer!
And another summer passes by.
With our preciously short summers, we tend to spend every drop of sunshine outside building something. First it was a cabin, then a house, and now the Momplex. We love building. It's just who we are. And we build all the time.
But we have a little girl now that is growing up, and we would like to make sure her childhood is well rounded and full of a variety of experiences. Wouldn't it be horrible if our dear Gracie grew up and hated building - because that's all we ever did? I could think of nothing worse!
So this is my being convincing part.
We have been working on and off at the Momplex when we can - but there's been alot of interruptions and distractions. We took some time off to work on some projects around our own home, and then have most of the month of June tied up in travel (can't wait to go to Haven!) so have been apprehensive about starting a massive project (like siding or deck building) only to have to leave it half done.
We have decided to focus this summer on getting the entire exterior of the Momplex done. Done, done. Sidewalks poured, decks finished, grass planted done. That way come snowfall, we can go inside and spend the winter making Mom's home just perfect. Our goal is to have one Mom in by Thanksgiving, and the other in by Christmas. Then I won't have to cook!
I know this isn't what many of you hope for, but by slowing down our pace just a little bit, it's going to give us a little time to also enjoy our summer. And some much needed time to enjoy our own little family.
Soooo .. you being my boss ... of course, we must be working even when we are not working, right? I'd like to share with you some of the places we go in Alaska, and the things we do. Because I certainly hope you have a chance to make it to Alaska someday too.
We spent last weekend traveling with Gracie, and it was one of the best stay-cations of my life.
We drove south from our home in remotish Alaska, headed straight for the Alaska Range, where winter is still very present. Even in June, the trees have not gone green yet.
Where the highway is no longer paved, you cross a little bridge and see this sign.
But I wasn't looking at the sign. I was looking behind the sign.
And then I had to do a double take.
I was seeing double!
For just $12 a night,
You can rent a waterfront room at the Tangle Lakes Campground, just feet away from a tangle of lakes perfect for canoeing, or just relaxing and watching the birds and listening to the loons.
Or spying on a busy beaver.
There's a roomy bath right across the hall
Housekeeping is self service and bear proof.
The restaurant hasn't yet been rated
Probably because there's not enough stars to describe a s'more made with dark chocolate toasted over an open campfire.
Just some very pleased patrons.
Just off the campsite there's a humble sign that simply says trail.
And there's only one way to find out where it goes.
The trail goes up.
Above the lake
To where the wildflower grow in bouquets of color
From the most delicate purples
To the purest white, it's like the flowers mirror the mountains above, speckled with snow.
The trail splits into two just where a five-year-olds legs grow tired,
And me, who loves to work, can see, it can wait.
But childhood will not.
I wonder what angles are on the picnic table legs .......
What could possibly be more enjoyable and rewarding than spending time with our loved ones in such a beautiful place... Who says u need to spend thousands on yr holiday... all u need is time.
I know that all of your readers want nothing more than to see you and your family happy and enjoying every moment of this incredible time in your lives. So, just know that we will all be anxiously awaiting news from the Momplex--and of course of your Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners :oP
Wishing you and the whole family endless fun and happiness as you build, build, build and most importantly LIVE!
wow, that is just beautiful, I seriously don't know how you get anything done, I would be spending every second just staring at the beautiful scenery lol, its too bad Alaska is a long way from me or I would defiantly go check it out for myself.
So good that u take time to enjoy ALL of that. we often miss the beauties in our own 'backyard'!
Are you kidding?! Take your time and love on your family. Besides, moving Mom's in by the end of the year still sounds super fast to me!
Ana, this was just the most beautiful post! Thank you so much for sharing this with us.
A lovely post in so many ways. Thank you, as always, for so generously sharing your life, your talent, your blessings with us. We are blessed because of you.
I get it, most of your readers do I imagine.
Spend time with the family and build when you can. Designing takes less time away and there's plenty of people like myself who would happily jump in and bring one of your designs to life.
I feel this dillema as well, my own building takes a backseat to my little girl and I suspect will for quite some time. As long as she think I'm the coolest thing around and wants to play barbies, dolls, cars, build a living room fort or splash in the water outside, I'm there. I work while she sleeps.
Although I have not made anything from your plans yet, I have a list of things I want to make. Not because I can't afford to buy furniture (although I have definitely saved up for furniture purchases in the past) but because making something is so much more special than just shopping and buying at a large furniture store. My husband and I just "graduated" to a King size bed and the farmhouse bed is first on my list to make someday soon. It's a beautiful bed, simple and classic and it's something I believe we will have for the rest of our lives especially since we will make it ourselves. I'd like to make a double size for both my kids so that they can one day take those beds to college and into their first homes. Beds that their mother and father made for them and will no doubt be sturdy enough to last lifetimes. I have furniture that was made by a great uncle and furniture that came from a furniture factory owned by my ancestors that was taken over during world war II. My mother took great care of these pieces and has passed them on to me and I treasure them because they have a story and a history. I hope that the pieces that I make from your plans will someday soon have their own story and history. Thank you for making your plans beautiful, simple and available so that my children will have stories and history in the furniture I can make for them.
Don't tell anyone, but when your "boss" secretly adores and idolized you and the work you do, then you hold all the power. We just sit anxiously appreciating ALL that you are willing to do. Family time will forever be WAY more important than pleasing a boss.
Ana- I visited the site today to see if you had a momplex update. Lol. Then I saw that you had an even better post. I have been hoping that we could see a little bit more of Alaska through your eyes. Enjoy your summer and if you feel like sharing your adventures, we would be more than happy to read about them.
You deserve a nice break!
Thank you for sharing your staycation with us. My husband and I have a special camping trip planned in a couple of weeks and I can't wait!!!! Getting outdoors and just relaxing and enjoying it will refresh you and make your work so much better when you get back to it.
Ana, that was a lovely post! As your boss, I'm giving you all the time you need to share life with your little girl. My only requirement is you keep posting the beautiful pictures!
I enjoy reading "notmuch" just as much as your plans and brag posts. Have fun this summer; take some great pictures, live outside, and watch your grass grow. We'll all be busy building because of your great site and plans. I'm so jealous you're going to Haven, can't wait to hear all about it!
Thank you so much - you are truly the best boss in the world! Crystal, Jenny, Rebecca, Pam, Whitney and so many others - you've become dear friends, and I can't thank you enough for your support and friendship. I don't know if I was able to convey this part - that when we do travel, I miss blogging, I miss writing, I miss reading comments, I miss YOU! And I want to write, I want to share, even when I'm not building. And it's those times when I'm not in the middle of a project that I often find inspiration or new ideas for the next project.
Thank you so much for your kind words - can't wait to explore and share my backyard with you - and maybe someday, inspire you to come visit Alaska!
You are the best!
A few posts ago I was inspired to visit Alaska. This post REALLY set that in stone. I love the mountains!! I am glad you are taking time for your family though. Yes, I do miss the posts, but I would feel bad as well if you didn't take time out for your family. I love the camping spot you found. Can you tell, I'm totally loving where you live?? :)
Pre-married pre-babies days, I spend two summers up in Nunavut Canada. What beauty the great North is! Thanks for posting the pictures, good to reminisce a little AND to remind myself too I need to enjoy our short summers in Northern Ontario with my little ones. Just finishing up my business paperwork this week-end while daddy is gone camping with the girls so that I have peace of mind and can go enjoy a few week-ends of sunshine with them too before winter comes back.
Enjoy your little Gracie :)
There is no feeling that compares to just enjoying one's child, sharing adventures in such splendor and making lifetime memories with her....far more important than writing a post for me! :) Enjoy the summer with Gracie & Ram!
Hey Ana! Never feel you have to apologize to us for taking a break to enjoy life! How many of us love to take breaks and do the things we love in life without having to worry about work and what the 'boss' thinks. We adore the work you do and appreciate every minute of time you spend sharing what you do on this here blog. So enjoy your family and your life and everything you do and we'll be here watching and anticipating every moment you choose to share with us. I love coming to your blog not just to see the finished project but to see the journey, and that's what building the momplex is about too. So keep doing what you do and we'll keep reading!
Thanks for taking us with you. It makes me feel a little blessed that you share all of this with us :-)
On a side note.... there's an app that reads angles ;-)
Gina - Lady Goats
DIY Blogger (when I'm not procrastinating)
I was so thankful to this and find you and your wonderful family "building" great memories together. While I'm anxious about the progress on the Momplex because I find building fascinating, it warms my heart to see your husband and Gracie having a good time too.
I'd love to visit Alaska with my family one day. The scenery is breath taking. You're lucky to live in such a picturesque place. Keep up the great work and keep taking those beautiful pictures!
This is your boss speaking. :)
Children don't wait so treasure Gracie and make those memories now while you can. I'm just grateful to get this message cuz I'd been wondering what happened to you, if you were okay or had decided to stop blogging the Momplex. I will happily wait now that I know more important things are underfoot. :) Just next time maybe drop us a line a smidgen sooner so we don't wonder so much. lol
You are a total inspiration Ana. I'm also listening to your interview online with Darren Rouse….which is how I found you. http://www.problogger.net/ana-white-webinar-recording/
I love your story telling and your furniture too…and the Momplex. Wow, wow, wow. Thank you so much for sharing.
I wish I could taste some smoked salmon with you.
Fantastic job! Fantastic life!
Being with your precious daughter is the most important thing in the world, especially while she is young. They grow up way to fast, and pretty soon she will be all grown up but you will still have all the lovely memories you had with her. And just maybe when she is all grown the three of you will be working on her house together :)
Ana, Thank you for sharing your lovely pictures of Alaska with us. Yes, your daughter will grow and time is precious. When she is grown up she will speak of the treasured time that both you and your husband spent with her. Thank you for all that you do.
Ana, My husband and I were stationed at Eielson AFB from 2001-2005 and Tangle Lakes was our favorite place to go camping and fishing! We were up there for 3 1/2 years and we came out to Tangle Lakes a few times every summer. Good memories :)
Wow, I have yet to visit Alaska but I most certainly want to go one day and this post kicked it up a notch. I love everything you just said and your daughter is precious. Of course you deserve some time off even if you are staring at a picnic table and pondering. :)
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