Haak WoodWorks

 Kayla and Justin have such a fun attitude towards Haak Woodworks. Get to know them behind the scenes and don’t forget to enter our contest!
 Kayla and Justin

1. How did Haak Woodworks Start?

Haak Woodworks started when I asked Justin to make a few hexagon shelves for our living room. After he questioned me on if they were in style haha, he agreed to make some. He’s seriously the best. A few friends who came by and asked where we had bought them, saying they had been looking for similar shelves and hadn’t been able to find any. We made a few shelves for friends and they loved them. A while later, when I was on a de-cluttering kick and selling stuff I didn’t need on Abbotsford Bidding Wars, I had the idea to try selling shelves there. I was surprised by how quickly they sold each time, but it was a little annoying to have to repost and watch the bids etc (also some people on Abby Bidding Wars can be a little crazy). My sister in law suggested we start an Instagram page to get the word out on what we had been making. Justin and I both didn’t have Instagram and we felt a little hesitant about joining that world… We’re quite private (him more than me) and not super techy or trendy or instagrammy (if that’s a word). But after some more thought decided why not? And here we are.

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2. What is the most life-giving aspect of your company to you?

The most life-giving aspect of our company to us… there are 2 things I think. The first is that it doesn’t take away any time from our family, in fact, it helps us spend more time together. We have fun with this! Justin builds the pieces (hexagons, tables, headboards etc) and I sand them and stain them and connect with the customers. We do this together in our garage with country music playing while the kids scoot around on their bikes or “help” sweep up the sawdust (which ends up being more of a mess but keeps them involved and they love it). It feels like a hobby we can all share together and it feels good to spend time doing something fun together instead of doing something like watch TV.

The second is that we’ve had opportunities to connect with some awesome people and local companies including Duft and Co, Spruce Collective, and Oldhand. These guys have just blazed the trail for local companies and they are so inspiring. We’ve also had the opportunity to donate some of our products for AMAZING causes including Casa De Luz, I Get To Legacy Chain and the Abbotsford Hospice. I think we sometimes underestimate the gifts we have and forget that collectively, small changes make a big difference. (Ok, let me stop myself here before I get on an inspirational rant. But seriously these guys are worth checking out if you haven’t already!)

 

3. What is the hardest part of starting your company?

The hardest part of starting our company also turned out to be the best and most freeing. Figuring out for ourselves that we could make this whole thing look the way we want and not having to copy a certain model to get there. At first, I thought we would need a Facebook page, an Etsy account, and “oh do I need to now add a blog about my family and post pictures of us making our products while wearing cute local clothing so people feel connected to us?” (Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against family blogs by any means or sharing day to day life. It’s just not me.) It feels good to be authentic and relaxed about it all and to just enjoy it for what it is.

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4. What words of advice would you give someone looking into or starting a small business?

Words of advice for someone looking into starting a business: Be inspired by other companies but don’t compare yourself to them. You have something completely unique to offer!!

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5. What is your favorite item you make?!

My favorite item is the crib we made when I was pregnant with our first baby and is now being used by our second. It’s big and sturdy and holds a lot of special memories. But other than that I LOVE the plant stands we make. I think a plant adds so much to a room, and the stand just shows it off a little better in a nice clean way. We also like doing new projects and hearing ideas from different people. Right now we are making a “house bed” for a friend’s little boy and I think it’s going to turn out amazing!!

 

6.Most popular item?

most popular item is definitely the hexagon shelf. People just can’t seem to get enough haha.

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7. How can we support you well?

Man, we have felt nothing but support from the beginning. We’ve had great encouragement and feedback, some cool collaborations and we’re excited for what is ahead!

 

THANK YOU JUSTIN AND KAYLA!

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GIVEAWAY INFORMATION

Enter to win a Two Shelves OR a Plant Stand (winner’s choice)

how to enter

  1. comment below about what you are looking forward to this summer
  2. like and share (for extra entries)
  3. tag friends in Instagram that would like this prize (one per comment)
  4. make sure you are following us if you have Instagram (Haak and F&M)

Must be 13 + years old to win. This is not a WordPress, Facebook, Instagram endorsed giveaway. Local Pick up only. We do not have shipping. Item will be from Abbotsford, BC. So if you have a way of grabbing it please enter!

 

contest closes Wednesday, June 27th at 11:59 PM.

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4 tips to get you outdoors, did you guess number 3?

A few weeks ago,we left the hustle and bustle of our regular day and met up with the two beautiful ladies behind Namaste Hiking Co.we spent a magical evening going on a brisk hike up Mt.Thom and while enjoying some quiet moments at the viewpoint, we sipped some amazing tea and had some delicious snacks. It was so calming to engage as a group in yoga ( despite Carla’s giggles and special poses). Here are some ways to get outside more often,

1. Find like minded friends – it’s so important to have one or two friends who are interested to get you going. Maybe similar lifestyles to be able to work around schedules or bring kids into it.sometimes this is hard, so maybe try social media platforms to see if there are any interests in your “friend” circles (facebook, instagram, bloggers,twitter,pinterest,linkdin?)

2. Start small– you don’t need to do the Grouse or Abby grind as soon as you have the motivational explore the outdoors. Just try out something close to your place,even a nice walk like the fort-to-fort trail.

3.find something that is organizedNamaste Hiking Co. was such a great intro to organized yoga as well as hiking.they have multiple types of explorations and you should check them out ! Let us know and we can be your new hiking buddies.

4.It’s all in your head- you need to understand every time you tell yourself you can’t, it really means you won’t. You need to start with your mentality and go from there. Believe you me, I am not perfect and constantly set ridiculous like,it’s to what I can and can’t do. You won’t become an outdoorsy person if you don’t try and say you can! Or find someone to keep you accountable.

We really enjoyed going on this little excursion and look forward to the many social media meet-ups! please check out Namaste Hiking Co!

 

Carla and Jessica

I am not alone

We have our first blogger sharing a time in their life. please read, love the raw beauty of her soul and encourage her!

changing names for anonymity

Wife- Julia

Husband- Henry

Ring, Ring, Ring “Hey babe, what sup? I just left, why are you calling me?” says Henry casually driving to practice.

” Who is Scarlett red lips?” Julia asks as she is casually searching on google and happens to have google’s best guesses and most recent search history up on the computer. She innocently goes on to find out why this one actress in a tv show looks so familiar only to be bombarded with googles dirty little secrets.

“I am going to watch her until you get home” she calmly reacts to this not so new idea that her husband might have an addiction to pornography.

” NO, I AM COMING HOME NOW, IM SORRY, IM SORRY, IM SORRY! Stop watching Julia, PLEASE!” as Henry pleads in embarrassment and shame in being found out.

“nope. I will watch till you get here so I know exactly why you need this over me.” click. Julia hangs up in shock, disgust, trying so hard to keep watching but with no desire whatsoever to get caught in this trap so many people pine over.

What do I do? Why am I not good enough? I thought this would be over when we got married. yes, I knew that he struggled, we have many conversations, I ran over his computer while we were dating in sadness. I am constantly getting to this point again where I need to add more filters, more passwords, less time apart in times where he could struggle or look, or be tempted into thinking for one small moment that it’s okay. When I share that we have struggled with pornography in our marriage,80% of the time, the person I share with also is going through something oh so familiar. YET we still don’t talk about it openly and without guilt and shame and darkness.

Henry rushes home in tears. which to be honest I only have seen him cry MAYBE 2 times before this.

“I don’t know why I even do this”, he shares ” I can’t help it, I look, feel guilty, can’t bring myself to tell you, and then look again in shame and being stressed out with lying”… It is a constant cycle so far in our 4 years of marriage. Couple months go by, I come home early, he looks sheepish, I instantly guess what’s been happening. deny, deny, FINALLY, he shares and I look at him and say “WHY DO YOU LIE!” I am honestly more upset with the lying than actually looking at pornography. Why am I so easy to lie too, even though I KNOW, with my gut that he is lying. But you don’t want to call him out every time it happens.

the thief comes to kill, steal and destroy…. well it is killing our marriage, it’s stealing joy and memories, and it is destroying a man who could be doing amazing things without the crippling effect of addiction.

please share with me that I am not alone in this story.

This is Part of a Story…..Only one part.

Featured Female : Danielle

We are so excited to have Danielle as our first Featured Female of 2017.  We are wanting to start our year off with a “BANG” and getting ready to launch our secret project that we have been working on for the past few months. So, it just seemed fitting that Danielle would be our first featured female.

We are excited to share each month a female entrepreneur. Someone who is inspiring and hard working and making her dreams come true. Danielle is setting the bar high and we are so blessed to share this little snippet into her life with all of you. Not only is she a goal setter and an inspiration she is also someone we are proud to call a friend.

Introducing Danielle the founder of:

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Web pageVancitybusinessbabes.com

Instagram – @vancitybusinessbabes

Facebook – Vancity Business Babes

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Picture by @amberleighphotog

1. Why did you decide to start your own business? What inspired this dream and idea to take flight? and What do you do?
I spend some time working for other people in traditional jobs and I found out very quickly that it wasn’t for me. I wanted more freedom and flexibility with my schedule!
I first started partnering with a health & wellness company and started my own home based business with them. I loved diving into entrepreneurship and learning about marketing, social media, and also all the personal development that came along with it.
I Later launched a women’s networking organization that brings like minded ladies together to share their success, strategies and it is also a space to connect both for business but also to create community and friendships. I wanted to create events that were educational, fun and gave people an opportunity to connect in an authentic way.
2. What has been the hardest part of your journey so far?
I think the hardest thing about building your own business is believing in yourself and getting over “what will people think?” There is a lot of fear surrounding this. I think that is why it’s SO important to surround yourself with people that are going to lift you up and encourage you!
3. What Advice would you give someone who has a dream to start their own business, but doesn’t know how to go about making it become reality?
Connect with someone who has created a business for themselves, talk to them about your dreams and bounce around Ideas. Ask for advice and start to research what will be needed in order to build that business. Start with very small steps (30 min or less) per day but work on it every single day. You’ll be shocked at how much you can get done!
4. How do you gain new inspiration to keep your business fresh and appealing?
Asking people what they want! 🙂 The best thing you can do as a business is to connect with your clients and community you have built and ask them what they would like to see. The main reason you are in business is to serve them, so ask them how you can do that!
5. Who has been an inspirational person in your journey thus far?
That s a very hard question. I have many local connections who have been extremely inspiring to me! But I also have many, what i like to call “virtual” mentors. I listen to their podcasts and videos! One of my favorite podcasts at the moment is “Goal Diggers” by Jenna KutcherJenna Kutcher
6. What is your favorite part of your day?
When I first wake up! I do about a 10-15 min workout, then I make myself coffee and I sit and read for about 20 min. I am currently waking up extremely early: 4:30/5 am- But I am also going to bed around 9:30 pm
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7. How do you relax?
A bath is one of my favorite ways to relax, with bath salts, or a good hot tub! (I would love to have a hot tub in my own backyard someday! )
8. What brings you joy?
Time with family and close friends, and my Faith- I love spending my Sundays at church and going for breakfast after with Family! Favorite time of the week!
9. what would you hope to be known for one day? What do you want your legacy to be?
I want to be known as someone who was authentic, someone who made others feel comfortable enough to be vulnerable. I want to be known as someone who was encouraging and inspiring! 🙂

 

Thank you so much Danielle for taking the time to share with us a little from your journey. Looking forward to following you as you continue to change the world around you. 

-Jessica

Getting to know my daughter

My daughter is 14 months old. In the past few weeks she has really opened up and shown us who she is. Let me tell you–  she is sassy, opinionated, ridiculous, mischievous, hilarious, so cute and pretty much the best thing I could of hoped for in a daughter.

I was thinking about her today, and as I was watching her play, she looked up at me and just started babbling about something super interesting, and as I just listened and did the occasional “oh yeah”, she just smiled and went back to reading her book and playing.  I couldn’t stop feeling oodles of love for her!

I would just say, I love this stage. She can walk, feed herself, play by herself, climb, smile, sleep well, and I am IN LOVE with her. She also gives the best hugs.

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Just thought I would share.

What is your favorite stage in kids? What has been your favorite memory?

 

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Quality over Quantity

This year I challenged myself to make sure I bought Quality over Quantity. Sometimes we  get so caught up in buying because of sales, or that my kids NEED to have so many extra pairs of clothes so I should make sure I am equipped. This year, for the kids I decided to make sure my “extra clothing” were hand me downs for daycare and preschool, and that I only purchased the a few extras for those other times where I might want to support local, or have them wear a little special item that matches my style.

P doesn’t like haircuts, so hats and toques or sometimes a pony tail happens for him.
She wears this dress every Sunday haha.
I can’t believe she turned one in October, all items were hand me down besides the “1” shirt.
This is P’s Once upon a child outfit.
Again, mostly hand me downs and Buy-Sell- Swap 
Hunter boots, Once upon a child and hand me downs
This toque is from Old Navy, sweater is from Montrose and George purchased last February, plaid shirt was a present and grey pants were Once upon a child
Jacket- TNA purchased 4 years ago and comes with a down insert ( I wear this jacket 50% of the time), Shirt- Montrose and George . Jeans- MCC (below the belt brand) and Blundstone shoes that were a gift last christmas (and I wear on the daily)

R’s outfit is all once upon a child HandM Brands. and you can’t see but Minimoc moccs purchased at there storefront after selling her last pair for $30 on buy sell swap. ( PHOTOCREDIT #kimnorcrossphotography)

 

R’s Padraigs purchased after selling her last pair for 70% of what I orginally paid. P is wearing Jax and Lennon pants, and puddle jumper sweater. Black Vans that were purchased for $20 at outlet store.
My daughter literally wears that dress on the daily. If I can these are the outfits I would choose them to wear as much as possible.


If you know me well, you would know I have about 20 articles of clothing and 3 pairs of shoes. Yes, I have Blundstones, and Tessa Hughes pants, a TNA winter Jacket (that I have owned for 4 years now), American Apparel Sweatshirt and a pair of Second Yoga Jeans that I found At MCC for 5$.

I often feel like people are judging me because my kids don’t wear no name brands, or I don’t shop at Wal-Mart or Superstore for the cheap items. I know I will get in trouble for this, but I am feeling like this is something that is needed to be said. I am buying Quality over Quantity. My oldest has Hunter boots which are gender neutral so that my younger Daughter can wear them and they will most likely get passed to nieces or nephews that would like to use. I paid $40 for Hunter boots for my kids (GASP), but I have had such bad experiences buying $6 carters rubber boots only to have them break in the same season as buying them. my children both have maybe 2-3 pairs of shoes, we rotate and sell them after on facebook for sometimes just as much as i paid for them.

 

Where I shop:

I try my best to save up for local business items, because I really value Supporting Local and showing that my town can thrive on small shops. So for myself, I live in Abbotsford. So Spruce collective, Borealis Manufactory, Once upon  a child, MCC , Hidden Treasures thrift, Value Village, Spruce Market, Montrose and George, and all those lovely shops downtown abbotsford. I also love ladyfern at highstreet. I love online shops that you can find at pop up shops or markets. I really find Jax and Lennon as one of my favorite kids clothing companies, Locomotive Clothing Co., Whistle and Flute, numpher, and a few more that I can share with you if you ever want to know my favorite shops.

How often do I shop:

I probably attend 50% of the markets that happen, and with being a youth pastor, I tend to look around downtown shops 2-3 times a month. but I am very intentional on purchases. I allow myself to look but make sure that I really think, Do I need this? how often would I wear this? Is this something I can justify buying at this price?

When I purchase something I literally wear it ALL THE TIME, because a. I only have a few articles of clothing, b. I do not keep items if i don’t wear them c. I only look for items that I replace from my original wardrobe (ex. 1 plaid shirt replaces another plaid shirt).

With all of this said. yes, I don’t have huge incoming expenses to pay for large wardrobes and fancy items. So I figure if i am intentionally buying for longevity, diverse easy pieces to pair with others, and something i could potentially resell or reuse for multiple people, than that is why I purchase an Item.

So I purchased in November a 2 pairs of pants for 12$ (because i found pristine condition pants from MCC that are high quality and I had no jeans) and a ABBY shirt from Montrose and George.

This Christmas, I really want to sway you in thinking quality over quantity. We are actually not doing Christmas presents as a family because i know relatives will give to our kids and we are doing a few gift exchanges. Instead we will be getting a few books as a family from Hemingways to read and share some of our older books with friends who want them.

So i guess the answer is yes, I have expensive taste, but i don’t have excessive spending habits so it actually is saving me money vs going over budgets for clothing.

 

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LET ME KNOW IF THIS WAS HELPFUL! I would love to hear some feedback, I know this isn’t for everyone, this is just my opinion and how I approach shopping.

Sprucing up on a budget

Oh man, sometimes I walk in the door after a long day and look around. Besides the mess of life, I sometimes feel bored or wish I had more feature pieces in my home. I honestly don’t want to spend the money to purchase form anthropologie or Urban Barn (though I have a few items I love from those places).

I found some great websites with some awesome ideas on cheap and easy ways to update your home.

  1. This one is the first site I found and loved. I am swooning over the Printable house calendar.
  2. change your chairs.
  3. Bedroom Headboards.
  4. make your own wall art!

 

Here are just some of my research on how to spruce up your home without saving up for it.

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feature photo courtesy of https://www.google.ca/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwjW0o6mvo3QAhUKzWMKHQLtBKYQjB0IBg&url=http%3A%2F%2Fnurserydecorr.blogspot.com%2F&psig=AFQjCNFFR32kSAVX9cG78ubCN2tO98YR8A&ust=1478293386399223