Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!
I wish you all joyful days for the rest of this year and all those that follow in 2020!
I apologize for the way things have been looking around here lately. Life has been hectic and unfortunately I have not made the time to keep things up. It is not an excuse, just a reality. I am a stay at home dad and watching two children has consumed so much of my time and life (as it should.) Many things I hold dear have taken a back seat to parenting.
I started to roast coffee because I have been so passionate about the beverage for most of my life. When I started in 2015 I was so excited about the new venture, I never thought it would grow so quickly. I tried to keep up with the demands of being the stay at home parent, a coffee roaster, a husband, and an entrepreneur. Something had to give. It was a hard pill to swallow, because I am hard working and full of pride for my business and creation at Young Mugs Coffee. I sided with my family, Laura and the kids.
I am not throwing in the towel. I've work too hard for the past four years to do that. But this year, this summer's farmer's market season, has shown me that I had to pick one thing and put everything else on the back burner. Watching two very active children and running a business is like having two 80 hour a week jobs and I wasn't getting very much fun family time.
I still roast coffee two to three times a week. I am honing my skills so that I can provide an even better tasting product. I am investing in the future of Young Mugs Coffee (with two highly potential employees.) As the kids grow up, I will find the time to roast coffee and run the business. Andre starts school in a few weeks and I will already have a little extra time each week. Next year, both kids will be in school full time, giving me an opportunity to be a great dad and a business guy.
Thank you so much for all your continued support for the past four years and as I transition into a more balanced life between husband, father, and coffee roaster. I have some awesome ideas on how I want to grow the business and will share them in time.
Have a great day!
I drive past this sign for the Rustic Drive-in several times a month these days, but I grew up near this place. So close, in fact, that I thought it was part of my home town of Lincoln, RI. Turns out it is located in the next town over.
For some time, I have wanted to take a photo with one of the screens in the back ground as it is a unique roadside attraction. I'm sure Freud would have a field day with it.
The last time I went to a movie here, Will Smith starred in Independence Day,. 22 years ago this summer! Actually last September, I tried to take my son here to see Incredibles 2 and Christopher Robin, but their hours had been reduced to the weekends only at that point. If I had done my due diligence, I would have known, but we found out the hard way when we arrived. So instead, we ate our homemade food at the gate and then went to the arcade at the Lincoln Mall. When one door closes, another one opens, right?
I don't know about you, but where I live, spring is in the air.
According to the Weather Channel app on my phone, the days are going to be in the 40s and 50s for the next couple weeks. I hope that trend continues beyond that time.
Yesterday, I walked around outside breathing the fresh air. It was so nice. Warm sunlight reaching into my body and melting away the winter doldrums. Tulip buds cracking the earth and stretching toward the sky.
This time of the year has always been special to me, rejuvenating. Before long, the family and I will visit the Putnam Farmer's co-op and purchase our chicks. I've missed having the duties and responsibilities of caring for chickens over the winter. I love the benefits of having chickens. The kids are endlessly fascinated by having birds. Delicious eggs. No ticks!
I was reminded today, as I tried to get into my jeep, that warmer days are not to far away. Tried was the operative word because the temperature got up to 1° in Webster, MA and the lock on the driver side door wouldn't unlock. It was frozen! The rear driver's side door could open and I was able to just jump over the seat to start the vehicle with little trouble. It did take about a half hour before it was warm enough to open the drivers door.
Durning this time, I could reflect on a few things, such as the Patriots are returning to the Suoerbowl for the fourth time in five years, the Red Sox will return to Florida soon for Spring Training, and before long I'll be hitting the rode on day trips with the kids looking for unique roadside attractions. Here is one the kids and I discovered last summer right here in Webster, MA!
Happy New Year!
I know its been sometime since I've posted. I regret that I don't update my website more often. Its not that I don't think about it, but life and the kids occupy my time.
It was my intention to be more proactice writing as soon as 2019 arrived, but like many people's resolutions, mine fell short of my expectations.
I'm not giving up though! I will be more present online and write about coffee, life, and whatever odd things come my way.
I hope you are having a spectacular start to the new year!
Esmee had her first school field trip today, though I suspect they accually stayed at school. I havent heard the full scoop yet, because her new game is "don't tell daddy anything about her school day, only mommy." I'll hear about it over dinner, I'm sure.
What I do know is that last week I signed a permission slip allowing Esmee to eat ice cream during this field trip.
While Esmee was at school or on this field trip, Andre and I had our own field day. We went over to Douglas Farm and Orchard and visited with Farmer Nick. What a pleasant guy! He show us all around his farm and us a lot about the importance of high quality food and knowing where your food comes from. We saw pigs, lambs, chickens, and ducks. They have several projects currently underway, including a 95 foot long greenhouse, where fresh, organic vegetables will be available year round.
Andre had a blast, as did I. Andre's favorote part of our trip was the pigs. I dont blame him!
I am grateful for people. Many of my favorite places or experiences are because of the people I shared them with.
I am speechless tonight. Right now, I am beyond words, filled with so much emotion.
I was roasting coffee tonight when I noticed my phone blinking.
The notification revealed this: http://www.envisionkindness.org/young-mugs-coffee-roasters-pays-forward-zoe-faye/
I never mention my daughter, Zoë, in the same breath or conversation as Young Mugs Coffee. I have always wanted to keep them seperated, in fact, because I want my coffee to sell on its own merit. I never wanted anyone to buy my coffee because they felt bad for me.
The things I can't seperate are the exeriences I had with loosing a child to cancer and how that made me feel.
On my other blog on www.teamzoecamcersucks.com I once wrote a story that I had hoped to have actually enacted with Zoe one day when she would arrive home from school. I would be waiting in the kitchen, with three pots of boiling water on the stove. I would also have a plate on the side with an egg, a carrot, and some coffee beans.
I would tell her this: when you place the egg in the boiling water, it enters
soft and becomes hardenes. The carrot enters hard and becomes soft. The coffee beans enter the boiling water and change the emvironment, the flavor of the water.
What is ironic is that I wrote this blog post long before I considered starting a coffee roasting business.
The message I wanted to teach Zoë, and eventually Esmée and André, is right there, right where I am. I want to change my environment, change the flavor.
I can't seperate Zoë from Young Mugs Coffee, as much as I thought I could, or tried to. Young Mugs Coffee Roasters is an extention of The Zoë Faye Foundation.
I am writting that because when Zoë was sick and even after she passed away, we received a tremendous amount of support and I knew there was no way we could pay it back. The only option I could come up with is to pay it forward.
In that, I honor Zoë.