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Heritage Handy Works is only in its infancy, however it has been in the making for many years.  To get an idea of what makes me tick and has led me to start Heritage, hell even the name Heritage you have to look at my father.  I’ve been following my father around for my entire life.  Sometimes not a willing tag along but none the less tagging right along with him.

My father would tell you that he is not a good teacher when it comes to me.  He would tell you that he always just expected me to be able to do something because I had seen him do it once, or because he had in his sometimes less than thorough way given me some cryptic instructions as to what he wanted done.  There were times that even basic instructions were not provided, just pointing and grunts.

I would counter this saying that my Dad was the ultimate teacher. 
First, he took me along, ALWAYS!  Never did I hear the words “no you can’t come” or “you’re too little”.  As I said earlier even when I got to a stage that I didn’t always want to go to the shop or hardware store I was “made” to go.  Let me explain this a little further as it is such a huge part of not just how I try to be with my children but who I am to the core.  This seemingly simple thing of including me in everything he did shaped me profoundly.  I spoke to adults as an adult from the beginning which helped me communicate and be communicated to.  I learned to listen, I learned to watch and most importantly I learned to try.  I also learned what it meant to dedicate yourself to your child.  In my humble opinion the single most important job we have as a parent is to dedicate ourselves to them.

Secondly, he threw me into the fray.  Nothing was off limits to me.  Seriously NOTHING.  I learned to drive by the time I was 5 so that I could pull the truck over to where he was working.  I had my own chainsaw (and the expectation that it be put to work) by the time I was 10.  I ran the circular saw, drills everything and anything at a very early age.  He taught me to use hand tools not just the things that make noise.  He let me wire outlets, cut lumber, measure items, pound nails, tear stuff apart and put it back together.  Through it all he never yelled at me for an honest mistake and never let me dwell on a failure.  Scrap or save it but move on.  This is also a huge part of who I am.  I believe that my Dad knew that I had to learn this way instinctively, he always understood that I learned best from doing.  Probably because he is the exact same way.  This can be a blessing and a curse but it’s who I am thanks to him.

Thirdly, he took time to play.  True our “play” changed over the years but it was and still is play to this day.  Part of the reason I have such an extensive knowledge of tools is because of my father and thus my love for hardware stores.  I’m not talking about the Home Depots, although the big boxes stores have a certain allure, nothing can compare to an old school hardware store with a glass counter, old tools on the wall and nails in bins.  Sadly these are a dying breed but that is a topic for another time.  My father purchased a hardware store in a tiny town when I was a toddler.  My formative years were spent in that store.  Most people understand how much time it takes to run a business, however my father would take time out and spend hours with me in the patio section of the store which magically turned into our fort when we would play Cowboys and Indians with our cap guns and Cowboy hats.  Thankfully this was during a more innocent time when people would just wait for him to finish our imaginary gun fight before requesting his assistance with whatever they needed from him.  This attention never wavered throughout my life.  From becoming a Scoutmaster even though he had never been a Boy Scout to coaching my baseball teams to just walking through junkyards or hardware stores with me.

Fourth, he led.  From having the courage to start his own business to being a sensitive and caring father in a time that did not require him to be one.  To showing me it is ok to fall, just remember to stand back up.  More often than not he led through actions, which as well all know speak louder than words.

I could go on and on, but fast forward to more recent times when you would think I would be taking fewer cues from him I find myself taking more and more from his teachings when it comes to being a father.  So when my daughter was born and I stood there holding her for the first time I knew things needed to change, I needed more time with her, I needed to be more involved, more everything my father was for me.  Sadly I missed allot of that with my sons.  I try to make up for lost time with Ethan, the one son still living at home but gone forever are the days of him running up to me when I get home from work just wanting to be in my arms or to play with me a game only he understands.  Not understanding how fleeting those days are is one of my biggest heartaches.

So, Erin and I have spent the last 5 years and have pushed REALLY hard the last 2 years putting our plans in motion to allow me the freedom to leave a well paying, secure job and to toss it aside and strike out on my own.  True, I will probably have less money and fewer material things but one thing I will have is time to create.  Time to create memories with my wife, with my children, with my parents and family and yes just to create things.  No amount of money can purchase that, nor can it be taken away.

So with all of the lessons my father taught me and the support from my ultimate cheerleader and partner, my wife Erin and with my desire to lead a more rooted life, I give you Heritage Handy Works.

Author: Chad

I am the father of three wonderful sons and one amazing daughter. I am a jack of all trades, but master of none.

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46 thoughts on “A lifetime in the making

  1. Beautifully written!

    Posted on April 10, 2017 at 9:48 pm
    1. Thanks Heather!

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 4:54 pm
  2. Wonderful!! Agree all that is what makes us the perfect and successful people we are today! It can’t be bought, learned in school or read in a book! Life experience is priceless!

    Posted on April 18, 2017 at 12:49 am
    1. I agree, only by living can we learn to live

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 4:56 pm
  3. Learning through living life and from our parents or role models is what shapes us to be who we are today. Sounds like you are on the right path.

    Posted on April 19, 2017 at 11:42 am
  4. Your father sounds wonderful! I’m glad he taught you so much. My husband is in the military so he’s not always around, so we always try to have family time during his day off.

    Posted on April 19, 2017 at 12:53 pm
    1. He sure is, well most of the time anyway 😉

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 4:58 pm
  5. It’s comforting when we have such a great role model in our lives. Congrats on such a big decision and having the confidence to do it. I look forward to hearing more about Heritage Handy Works.

    Posted on April 19, 2017 at 1:16 pm
    1. Most of my confidence comes from my wife and family. Without them I would probably be curled up under the bed.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:30 pm
  6. Your family sounds wonderful. Learning from our parents is always something we can notice more once we become an adult.

    Posted on April 19, 2017 at 3:37 pm
    1. Thank you, yes they are wonderful. I am very blessed to have many amazing and wonderful people in my life.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 4:58 pm
  7. I’m glad you had such a great role model in your father, and that you have such an understanding and supportive wife! Good luck on your next venture, and congrats on making the move!

    Posted on April 19, 2017 at 5:16 pm
    1. Me too, I would hate to think how I would have turned out without their influence.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 4:59 pm
  8. Nothing can compare to the love and advice received from our parents! Your post is both beautiful and inspiring.

    Posted on April 19, 2017 at 9:41 pm
    1. Thank you! I agree, I wish I was better at listening to advice but I’m trying.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:00 pm
  9. Well done for you for following your fathers lead and making a name for yourself in the shape of your own business. Although there might be less money at least you will be doing what you love.

    Posted on April 19, 2017 at 10:55 pm
    1. I still have anxiety over the decision but in my heart know it was the right choice.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:01 pm
  10. It’s awesome to be reading a post from the hubby perspective. Cheers!

    XOXO // Check out my latest post if you like 😉
    SINCERELY OPHELIA | HOW TO | Small Bag in a Big City

    Posted on April 20, 2017 at 4:40 am
    1. Thank you, Wifey gets plenty of my perspective, I guess she figured it was time others shared the load.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:02 pm
  11. Its a beautiful tribute to your father. Congratulations and much success.

    Posted on April 20, 2017 at 8:22 am
    1. Thank you, oddly I didn’t intend for it to be a tribute to my Dad, it sort of just evolved into one as I wrote it.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:03 pm
  12. This was so beautiful to read. I like ideas birthed from years of planning. I love the old school photo too. Must be a major throwback for you. Good luck with your baby.

    Posted on April 20, 2017 at 10:23 am
    1. Thank you, yes it was taken in 1991 or so. We both have more gray hair and pounds on us.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:04 pm
  13. Sounds like you have a beautiful relationship with your family. I totally agree family is everything and it is so important to cherish every second that we have with them because time passes by too quickly.

    Posted on April 20, 2017 at 3:25 pm
    1. I do, and I agree 100%. Sadly it is only through the passing of time that I have realized this.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:06 pm
  14. What an amazing childhood you must have had, by the sounds of it. Nothing beats having a magical adult in one’s life.

    Posted on April 20, 2017 at 7:12 pm
    1. I did, of course at the time I thought I was being tortured sometimes. However looking back on it I grew up in a way that is all but a fading memory in our society.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:14 pm
  15. Your father sounds remarkable! I love that he never said no to letting you come along and watch and experience things.

    Posted on April 21, 2017 at 12:17 am
    1. Yes, he is. I hit the father lottery.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:16 pm
  16. Beautifully written! This truly shows the impact that your father had on you and how you can implement it differently to fit your lifestyle and make that impact on your kids! I have no doubt that your kids will feel the same way about you!


    Posted on April 21, 2017 at 2:45 am
    1. Thank you, my family always seems to enjoy my writing, it is very nice to hear from someone that is slightly less biased.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:18 pm
  17. A good relationship with our parents gives us a string foundation for what we want in life. And for what we want to achieve. Kudos to your Dad.

    Posted on April 21, 2017 at 9:43 am
  18. This is really beautiful. It’s good that you have a dad who has been nothing but an inspiration for you. He sounds amazing and it’s nice that you’re taking his lead and following your dreams!

    Posted on April 21, 2017 at 11:18 am
    1. Thank you! Sometimes we can lead by following. Hopefully that is what I can achieve.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:19 pm
  19. I am launching my business as well. I loved taking that risk to follow what I really want to do in life. It’s just a little sacrifice to achieve your goals. I think it’s lovely that your dad is your inspiration, not a lot of people can say that.

    Posted on April 21, 2017 at 11:22 am
  20. This post is so well-written. I couldn’t agree more. That life experience is the best resource tool available. We learns things from watching others, reading books, school. but actually doing something and learning from it – so amazing.

    Posted on April 21, 2017 at 1:26 pm
    1. Thank you, I appreciate that. I couldn’t agree more. Get out there and do it, whatever it might be!

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:21 pm
  21. This reminds me of the quote ‘Nobody on his deathbed ever said, “I wish I had spent more time at the office.”‘ You have a wise father, and I am grad you are taking after him.

    Posted on April 21, 2017 at 9:56 pm
    1. You are so right, for the last 2 years that has basically been my mantra.

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:22 pm
  22. Great story! We can’t deny the fundamental part of parents to their children’s success. Im touched when I heard about a father-son, father-daughter story together and enjoying each other’s company as family.

    Posted on April 22, 2017 at 1:38 am
  23. That’s a great tribute to your Dad! I’m sure it just made his heart swell with pride and happiness. I think it’s great that you want to be that kind of Dad for Ethan and Clara.

    Posted on April 22, 2017 at 11:38 pm
    1. Thanks Doug!!! Actually he was mostly embarrassed but there again, to him it is just the way a father should be. Nothing to boast about.

      He is a lot like someone else I know. (Doug)

      Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:25 pm
  24. Thank you all for the comments. I’m touched that you seemed to find my little unintentional tribute to my father enjoyable and even more appreciative of the compliments.

    Posted on April 24, 2017 at 5:28 pm
  25. This made me miss my dad which I haven’t seen for 7yrs already.

    Posted on April 26, 2017 at 11:05 am
  26. What a beautiful story! Very nice.

    Posted on April 27, 2017 at 8:29 am
  27. This all makes perfect sense now that I’ve gotten to know you better, and I’ve met your father too. You are so much like him, for better or for worse! (But of course I think that’s a good thing because he seems like such a kind and humble man). You are lucky to have had such a wonderful example and mentor.

    Posted on May 13, 2017 at 3:38 pm