You probably thought this blog was dead.

That’s never a good way to start off a blog post, but with a grand total of five posts since June 2016, you’d be forgiven for thinking as much. The last three posts, from just over a year ago, were in reference to the workshop that I was planning to build. If you follow me on Instagram, then you already know that the workshop has been “finished” since earlier this year. I’m pleased with it.

Okay, that’s an understatement. For more than a year, I poured sweat and stolen hours into this workshop. I sawed thousands of feet of oak, pine, and poplar. I built trusses, doors, and restored vintage windows. I hammered nails until my shoulder throbbed, and then I kept hammering. This shop is the culmination of two years of planning and work. It’s not big, and it’s not perfect, but I’m damn proud of it. There are still a few projects (insulation, interior paneling, and stairs) to work on before I can remove those quotation marks around the word “finished”, but at least my tools and workbench have a home.

The big news today – and the reason for the re-emergence of my blog – is to announce a change in my life that will afford a few more hours each week within these walls, and perhaps (fingers crossed) even a couple of hours for blogging. That’s right. Beginning this week, I leave behind the cozy comfort of gainful employment and begin life anew as a “business owner”. I’ll still be working about 3 days a week as a contractor for my former employer – and only one day a week at the office – which feels like a good balance to me. I quite enjoy the work that I do there, but I less enjoy being tethered to a desk for 45 hours a week.

My new life as a “business owner” gives me a laundry list of new obligations: quarterly taxes and accounting; marketing and business development; and perhaps most intimidating, learning to make things out of wood for profit and not merely for pleasure. I realize there is often a disconnection between “what I want to make” and “what someone will pay me to make”. I hope to bridge that gap over time. Meanwhile, my risk-averse wife would kindly appreciate your positive thoughts as I recklessly throw our steady, predictable life into utter disarray.

11 thoughts on “You probably thought this blog was dead.

  1. Best wishes for success in your new venture. I’m sure it will be an amazing time for you and your family. Please keep blogging as time permits, but don’t worry about the gaps.

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    1. Thanks, Lee! I’m a bit nervous, but more excited. I anticipate that the blog may have gaps, but hopefully not a year or more. I do enjoy sharing my thoughts and activities here.

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  2. Love seeing your work… the shop and the playhouse was awesome… looking forward to following your journey in wood working…

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  3. Great to see you back on this blog. Best of luck with your new endeavors and congrats on the great workshop. Glad to see someone living my dream of less time behind a desk

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  4. Just came across this great compilation of woodworking/personal/technical information, and I’m totally amazed. Too bad I’m only a couple of years away from retirement, otherwise I’d really be able to benefit from your wisdom and thoughtfulness.

    Take heart: I spent eighteen years studying at ten post-secondary schools spread across Canada and the US, from 1971 to 2014 (and only graduated from five of them), yet managed to overcome financial security issues multiple times, so don’t get preoccupied with being self-employed and struggling. Northern Saskatchewan salutes you and your family, Justin (and please don’t give me up to Chinese hackers . . . )

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