It’s been since a Christmas or two ago since I’ve gone in and photographed the shop, so we combined the best of both worlds and did shop photos and Record Store Day 2k19 with our neighbors, the near and dear, Vertigo Music.
A lot has changed in the shop. Like, A LOT. By now, if you also follow my instagram or the shops, you know that we brought Alex aboard to join Josh and Chris. To do that, we rearranged the shop, built out his station (which held its own challenges) and took some snazzy photos of him to update the ‘meet the barbers’ section of the shop website.
We happen to be those people who go to do one thing and have to take this crazy detour to get to our original destination. Every accomplishment we get to, makes me extra proud because of all the behind the scenes it took to get to it; so in and of its self, the shop is worth photographing to me.
I don’t know how to even go about explaining the dynamic of these three. I can simply say that every addition has been just the right one; like the puzzle piece we didn’t know we needed yet. I’m so grateful to have Josh and Alex at the shop and for caring for not only the shop, but our kids and Chris like family. They’ll forever be a part of ours. Hell, we talk about them at home more than we talk about some of our own family.
Owning your own business has to be something you LOVE. If you don’t, you’ll never make it.
Everything about owning the shop has been intense work. Like I’ve always said, what normally is divvied up to different people at a normal job, all falls to the two of us for the shop. I do the paperwork, taxes, marketing, and design work. Chris puts in the physical shop work of making sure they have everything they need, ordering product, face time, the most important hair cutting part, and the bill payments.
It’s hard ya’ll. We did NOT get a tax refund this year. We owe so much. So, so, much. I almost shit my pants in the poor accountants office when he told me how much we owed. That reminds me, I need to write a post about THAT experience…
So, here’s what the shop looks like right now. Next year it’ll look different, so this is just a wonderful documentation of this moment in time.
Even though the barber shop has been open for 6 months now, we're still adjusting to our new schedule which begins later and ends later. One of the harder parts has been that Chris getting out so late means he can't participate in as much as he would have been able to before, but I'm getting better at planning and organizing morning activities. Like this one!
The Grand Rapids Children's Museum is one of Ana's favorite places EVER. We could spend an entire day in there if they had coffee. So when we realized they opened early enough Chris could spend an hour with us there, it was game on yesterday! I was just expecting the usual awesome stations they had, Ana's favorite being the grocery store and play cafe, but when we hit the second floor, we were so pumped.
Ana talks about how she's going to be an animal doctor and baby doctor CONSTANTLY o when we saw the Diagnosis: Fun! exhibit, we were blown away. The different centers they had were so incredibly realistic, which is one thing Ana get's frustrated with when it comes to the doctor set toys is they're so toy-like. So when she got to shove Chris through a tiny tube and take his photo and use a working stethoscope, she never wanted to leave.
She has since requested a legit doctor kit "like the museum has, not the baby stuff" and spreading the word that this is such an amazing exhibit for a child who is so interested in becoming a doctor or nurse! I'm so stoked that Chris got to participate too. That way I wasn't taking the brunt of the bandaging and proding haha!
I know a lot of you out there think a new year doesn't mean jack shit, BUT! I love them. I always have. I love setting goals, making lists, and that fresh start feeling. Before we get on to my hopes for 2018 and my resolutions though, lets recap a little on 2017.
Highlights and Hardships of 2017:
We moved back to the Grand Rapids area from Lansing, MI with Wild Thing, a giant dog, and two cats.
In April, we decided to open Avenue Barber Shop, found a space, and filled it out and opened September 2017.
I left a job I really, really, really loved and began a new one in GR.
Ana started a new school that is infinitely better than her last and rebuilt her trust in teachers and schools.
We battled another bout of drug addiction in our extended family that hit my anxiety button all over again.
The barber shop took off faster than anyone expected it to!
I finally made the decision to start saying "No" and left my job in GR to work on marketing and Mrs. Motley's Crew full time.
Chris and I put another notch in our "built together" belt. Literally, the barber shop was pieced together by the two of us alone. It doesn't get much more grassroots than that.
We all continued to be blessed with health, amazing friends and family, and so, so much love.
2017 was a huge year for us. I remember making an Instagram post on my personal account when we first moved back saying something like "Big things are coming," and big things have indeed come. We've made a lot of new starts, the three of us, but this one has been one of the best, most exciting ones. I feel like we're FINALLY finding our stride, no matter how many jumps, bumps, and bruises are included. We're just happy we're still here to collect them.
Even though this year has been great, we can't wait to see what 2018 has in store. Buttttt, I'm kind of bossy so I have my own list of what 2018 is going to do for me. Are you ready?
What 2018 is going to do for Aslyn:
It's going to be the year that I for real have no fear of saying NO. I hate, no, loathe, letting people down or disappointing them, so this is actually kind of rough for me. I'm going to own that word by the end of 2018 though.
Eat more cake. Seriously. I love cake and I haven't eaten enough of it in 2017. So watch out for my reviews on cake recipes and my steady weight gain. #dontcare
Work on patience. I have a short fuse. Chris will attest to that. Wild Thing would too, but I hate being the crazy lady. I want to be that calm, collected, icy queen when I need to be. Not the "she hasn't showered and she's giving me crazy eyes" lady. SO. If you have ways that have helped you grow your short, short fuse, I NEED HELP! SHARE!
I'm going to date my husband more. This guy works 6 days a week. Dating is hard when you work that much. But I'm going to figure out ways to do it. Maybe it's breakfast dates, maybe it's home dates. We'll see.
So that's what I've got. I know it's not a lengthy list, but it's mine and it's a truckload for me. What about you guys? What are your corny resolutions? Please tell me yours in the comments!
To go out with a bang, we went to the Grand Rapids Public Museum. NERD ALERT. But seriously guys, it's pretty freaking cool. Their new exhibit, Dragons, Unicorns, & Mermaids is here until May, but we couldn't wait any longer. We were being curious (a corny way to tie in their Be Curious slogan)