Jul/09
31

A most important document arrived in the mail today for the youngest member of the family.

It’s an especially cute picture, if I do say so myself.

Now we can actually take a trip in the next five weeks. It won’t be a fancy five-star kind of trip but we’re hoping to stretch our money wherever possible so we can spend the maximum amount of time on the road.

Especially thrilling is that this will be the first adventure trip that Jeff has ever taken with us, ever. I’ve always traveled by myself because he didn’t want to/couldn’t leave work. Now, thanks to a nearly miraculous break in his busy life, we have a precious few weeks where there are no torn sympathies between family and job. We can just go and enjoy each other and the children for five glorious weeks.

We have ideas but nothing’s definite yet.

Stay tuned for developments as they come.

On the road again/ I just can’t wait to get on the road again,

Annie

Jul/09
31

I decided last week, for some bizarre reason, that we were ready for the “after” pictures of the condo. It was probably the unexpected month early delivery of the new furniture that did it.

Anyway, I called up the fabulous photographer who did the “before” pictures of the condo and made an appointment for five days later, which seemed perfectly reasonable at the time.

And…then….when he arrived today…..it was like he was showing up to some squalid hovel where no one ever cleaned or unpacked or anything. Things were a mess. The black couches hadn’t been moved out and were stacked up in the foyer, baby J was asleep, not allowing us to get shots of his room, and when we woke him up, he started bawling and basically cried at the top of his lungs the entire time the photographer was here, Jeff’s phone was ringing off the hook, I was running around stuffing things into drawers and sweeping things off counters, totally trying to fake good shots.

It was total chaos. I know he’s good but is he good enough to get decent shots when all HELL IS BREAKING LOOSE AROUND HIM? I guess we’ll all be able to judge when he gets the pictures to me and I get them up.

Aaron starts setting up:

We had to move huge stacks of stuff into the hallway while we took the pictures, below. It won’t even look like our house when you see the pictures! The kitchen has nothing on the counter and we moved the guinea pig cages out of the shots. It will look like a cool museum where you never walk upstairs at 5:50 AM in your robe, bleary-eyed, with a squirming toddler shrieking Bekfast, Momma! Bekfast! and then step in a large pool of cat vomit.

Not that it ever happened to me. Clearly.

D was an assistant until he got bored with the pace and went off to play video games. Shesh. Kids these days.

Despite all the chaos, we did actually accomplish much today. The green room, aka the Bat Cave, is now tidied up and ready for a few weeks/months of action before Jeff finds some office space.

This is the wall Elfa unit we installed yesterday.

Here’s Jeff’s desk. He’s a low key guy with the office equipment as he only needs his macbook air and a phone to start conquering the world :)

We left the rocking chair in there in case his back needs a break while he works the phones:

Another shot of the desk area, with a good look at the cool photograph by our friend Jon Cornforth.

Yours, anxious to see if the great fake-out worked,

Annie

Jul/09
31

As you know, we’re leaving town in the next few days until early September. I’m blogging each and every day so stay tuned for details!

We decided we were going to use this brief downtime to get everything obnoxiously organized so we can return home and hit the ground running. The fall will be CRAZY!

Part of that was making a place in the house where Jeff can begin working as soon as we get home. Luckily, we have the perfect spot: the green room!

(Maybe things do happen for a reason!)

Unfortunately, it’s become a junk room since we moved in and there’s lots of work to do…

The first step was to get a “closet” in there to help get things off the floor. Since those Container Store Elfa units have worked so well, we went back and got another one.

They took my plan…

…and translated it at their planning station. The process is so cool.

Jeff multitasked.

This is a fancier version of the shelves with a wood trim. Ours isn’t that nice. It’s just wire.

Then we brought it all home and got to work.

Ta-da! It seems hard to believe that this little room could possibly start something big. I remember when Jeff started his former company, he worked for months in his business partner’s guest room. Months and months. Then they rented a small two room office where they worked for two years.

When a new employee got hired, they spent their first day putting together a chair and settling up a folding table from Office Depot. You know…one of those wood grain folding tables like they have in church rec rooms.

I used to despair about the office situation. It just looked like a company that wasn’t going anywhere–a couple of guys sitting at computers, all day every day, in some guy’s spare bedroom.

I would think, on a regular basis, Oh My God, what have we done?

Of course, those guys were writing the foundational code for our first product, which became a hit for the studio. I couldn’t see past working in someone’s guest room but guess what?

The code can still be excellent, the product superior, no matter WHERE it starts! I wish I could have told myself that all those years ago.

Now I know that being frugal — miserly, even — while in early start-up mode is the difference between successful start-ups and those that burn through the money before the project is done.

Instead of looking at Jeff working in our spare bedroom as an Oh My God! kind of moment, I’m in there full board, bad assed, 100% committed to getting it set up.

I don’t know if practice will make perfect in this case but you sure can’t argue the experience counts in this situation.

I don’t know if I have ever been so ready for anything in my entire life as I am for this new company, even though I’m not an employee and never will be.

It’s so much fun to kick start something new!

Annie