Monday, 4/23/12, at about 5:30 PM Connor, my oldest son, asks me to take him to work with him for “Take Your Child to Work Day”. “Sure”, I tell him, “What day is it?” “Thursday”, is his reply. THURSDAY? How am I going to possibly make Thursday work? “Sure Connor, I’ll take you.” “OK, but are we going to sit in front of you computer all day? That’s kind of boring.” That, coming from the kid who could glue himself to a DS, but the thought of watching me design makes school look like the better option.
As a part of the design team at Design Build Planners, a good portion of my time is spent in my home office, working on CAD (Computer Aided Designs) for my clients, as well as other DBPlanners’ clients and clients from our Preferred Remodeler Network. I do meet with homeowners at their homes during design, and visit the active jobsites as they progress. However this week, I have two design projects that must be complete by the end of the week as well as some alterations a homeowner requested to a third plan, on top of my “normal” work load, and was not planning on leaving my desk. On top of it all, rain is in the forecast for most of NJ on Thursday. I’ll just have to make it work.
And I did. Some late hours Tuesday, early ones Wednesday and Thursday, and by 10:00 AM (I spared him the early computer time) we were ready to go. In the car, we spoke about what I do. I told him I was in the remodeling industry, where we fix, change, and add to homes that are already built. “Well, then is modeling when they build new homes? Is that what models do?” I told him “not exactly” and we discussed New Construction, and how it is different from the specialists in remodeling. For a 6 year old (6 AND A HALF if you ask him), he had some pretty good questions and was really interested. He was ready to visit some job sites, and maybe take some pictures for me
Our first project was a multi-phase addition that is just beginning the second phase. The project was split, so the clients could live on the side opposite the construction, and save the cost of moving out. The project leader wanted some input on the Master Bedroom Fireplace height, so we took some measurements of the master bed and the fireplace wall, and I will be able to give them a computer image to reflect the proper height to see it from the bed.
The second project is a large, contemporary home that is getting major interior renovations, along with 3 different additions, a paver patio, and a roof deck. The clients are not living in the home during the construction, which helps speed up the construction time. The electricians were working, so I was able to explain how the wiring works, and how it must be routed around the framing. Connor was thrilled to walk around the site and take pictures. On this project as well, I was able to review some items with the project leader.
Ready for lunch, we went to Bobby’s Burger Palace and spoke mostly about baseball (his newly discovered sport) and not remodeling. However, he did find the time to draw his own design of a house complete with a swingset, for my next design. We rounded out the day with a trip to a cabinet vendor, and headed home.
As he was dosing off in his booster seat, I asked him if he wanted to work in remodeling after seeing everything today. “I want to be a daddy” was his reply. I told him that was great, but especially if he is going to be a daddy, he will need to work at a job. “No, a Daddy, a You. I want to do what you do, and be like you, because you are really good at it.”
I can’t wait until summer break for our next work day together!
Just wanted to comment on this. What you and your son did on that day will stay with him for the rest of his life( and yours, I think). So many children do not have this opportunity in their lives. You are a special man and please take a moment to celebrate the choices you have made. God Bless!
Thanks Ralph, I have a 2 more younger ones and can’t wait to get them involved as well!