When We Grow Up

We’ve been doing a lot of thinking about what our lives will look like in a few weeks, a few months, and even a few years with the impending arrival of the littlest Petersik. And a big part of that process included wondering about how we’d keep up with this blog once there was a tiny (yet huuuuge) responsibility around here to be cared for and coddled. So we put our heads together and concocted a few new strategies for making time for everything: each other, our baby, this blog, and of course our main man Burger.

We’re still as dedicated as ever to keeping this home improvement adventure going since we’ve had the fortune of taking this hobby/passion of ours and turning into a full-time job for Sherry. And at the risk of not saying this before I forget: THANK YOU for encouraging, supporting and humoring us on a daily basis so that could happen (read how Sherry went from hobbyist to full time blogger here).

But with a newborn on the way, we’re not delusional. We know how much time and effort that will take. Caring for Baby P alone could be a full time job for Sherry so we knew that maintaining our two-post-a-day habit and coordinating weekly giveaways, all while taking on consistent DIY projects would be a stretch. So we came to a major decision (not without a ton of careful consideration and number crunching of course). The verdict? We’re charging forward with Young House Love full force- and in order to keep things going we’ll be bringing on a second full-time employee (to help with both baby and blog duties). Any guesses as to who it could be?

I know, some of you are probably crossing your fingers that it’s Burger – he is quite a hard worker…

But it’s actually… me! That’s right, once Baby P comes along I’ll be saying a sad goodbye to my time as an 8-to-6 advertising geek and hello to full time fatherhood & bloggerdom. And for that, I feel incredibly blessed. So again: THANK YOU. It’s not like I don’t already work about 20+ hours a week on top of my full time job when it comes to keeping this blog going, but with all the time that we’ll gain with me being at home during the day we’re certain that we can better juggle the blog, the baby, and the rest of our lives. In fact we have big plans for YHL when I come on full time, so stay tuned for even more action around here in the coming months…

And what does my new role as a full time father/blogger really mean? Of course the obvious: I’ll be around to tag team both the care for our beanette and the blog with Sherry, seven days a week. So we can nurture each of them as one big (hopefully very happy) family. But it also means that we’ve got another major room makeover on our to-do list. That’s right, Casa Petersik is getting a bona fide two-person home office!

For now, all of my night and weekend work on our blog has been done at the dining room table, while Sherry remains parked at her nook in the den. But if I’m going to be around all day, we know we’ll need a more permanent space so we can reclaim the dining table and keep the room-to-room shouting to a minimum. Plus there really is something to be said for a designated work space to help delineate work and play zones, which we know will be very important when it comes to maintaining that fragile and oh-so-important work/life balance.

So if you haven’t already figured it out by process of elimination, the new office will be taking over our current guest bedroom. And with the nursery having given our other guest bedroom the boot already, we have to keep this office 100% guest friendly as well (yup, that means it must sleep at least two people as it always has). But it also has to accommodate two working bloggers, their wee one, and their playful nine pound pooch. Not to mention store all sorts of paperwork without looking too corporate for our guests when they come to stay. Oh yes, we’ll be walking quite a delicate line in there (all while trying to squeeze every last ounce of function out of the tiny 10′ x 10.5′ space).

Oh and did we mention that we’d also like to see it multitask as a playroom of sorts for Baby P since she’ll obviously be hanging out in there as we do our blogging thang? We didn’t? Well add that to the list. So stay tuned for the play by play as we attempt to fully reconfigure this soon-to-be triple duty room into a space for work, play, and overnight guests. It’s sure to be a doozie, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

And we’d love to hear any tips that you guys have when it comes to designing a home office, working from home without losing your mind, or just generally creating a room that has two or three separate functions. Share and share alike.

Comments

  1. says

    WHOA! Awesome John. Many many congrats on this wonderful decision. You guys rock and you’re going to be the best parents and bloggers out there!

  2. Sandra says

    That’s really exciting news! Quite happy for your family!

    If it’s not too personal of a question, how are you guys planning to handle health care? I’ve found that to be the biggest hurdle of self-employment.

    • says

      Hey Sandra,

      We’ve already signed up for freelancer’s insurance (a small family plan for J, me and the bean) that will kick in after her birth (we’re covered by John’s office until then). I’ve actually had it before (back when I was a freelance copywriter and John and I weren’t yet married so I couldn’t be covered by his company) and of course it’s an expense every month, but it’s also usually a monthly expense in the corporate world, it just comes out of your paycheck before you get it. We’ve definitely had to get used to a lot of we’re-a-small-business changes over the course of evolving this blog (like hiring an accountant, filing quarterly taxes, and even paying a pretty penny to host our site to keep it from crashing every day) so we’re thinking that we’re pretty well versed at taking on extra responsibilities to keep this whole thing going. It’s so worth it to us in the end!

      xo,
      s

  3. Jennifer says

    How absolutely wonderful that you both will be home with the baby!! My best advice for not going crazy at home is to make sure you still go out somewhere! – the park, mall, to dinner, church, high school ballgames, anywhere! Don’t lose touch with friends and make sure to have adult conversations at least once a week.

  4. Debbie says

    Hey what about something along the lines of a murphy bed that can be put away when you don’t have guests? You’ll have plenty of floor space for the little one and when a guest comes you can just pull the bed down :)? By the way a BIG HUGE congrats!!!

  5. Cindy says

    Congratulations on the exciting and scary decision. For some time now, I’ve been mulling over how to turn our small seldom-used guest room into a craft room with a place for people to sleep, so I am really interested in watching your process. (I’ve been considering doing Ana’s murphy bed plan from Knock-Off Wood.)

    Good luck and God speed. ;)

    • says

      Hey Jamie,

      John and I actually worked together when we met in NYC, so our life was a little something like this: go to work together, go to lunch together, go back to work together, leave work together, have dinner together, hang out til midnight or one, repeat. So we’re pretty confident that we love being around each other enough not to go crazy. Although of course we plan to have some separate time and to get out of the house (both together and individually) to keep ourselves sane!

      xo,
      s

  6. Andrea P says

    Congrats John!
    What a wonderful arrangement for you & your soon to be expanding family! So glad you can do what you love! :)

  7. Andie says

    Wow, that is so awesome! What a lucky little girl to have both her parents around! I’m looking forward to seeing what you’re going to do with that room.

  8. Ann says

    Yah! I am so relieved you aren’t giving up the blog, I could understand if you did, but you’d be missed very much. Love the pix of Burger behind the laptop. Too funny!

  9. says

    Congratulations!! I can imagine neither of you ever thought your little website would turn into a full time venture for both of you, but what a huge blessing to be able to be home with the little beannette! I cannot wait to see what you do with the guest room since our modest 3 bedroom house will eventually have our guest room converted to the same office/guest/playroom combination. Thanks for keeping all of us in the loop with all of your house (and life!) updates :)

  10. says

    wow congrats on the move! are you guys worried about not having a steady income coming in each week?

    I think this decision is great..having both parents being there for the new baby =)

    • says

      Hey Yvonne,

      We’re nothing if not extremely financially cautious (sometimes to a fault) so of course we crunched numbers for months and thoroughly thought through any number of situations before making this huge decision. Having a good amount of money saved up as a “backup” was helpful, just so that if things somehow change with the way our blog is growing we still have 12 months of income squirreled away to cushion us. It definitely wasn’t a decision that we made lightly, but it really does feel momentous to be saying it out loud after tons of consideration!

      xo,
      s