Sticky:  Am I really allowed to have this? I’m not sure yet, we’ll just have to see…

So here are my intentions with this blog: As you already know, I have a great website full of information, faq’s, and photos. It’s exactly what I want to represent my business on a professional level - however, it is not the proper forum for my occasional rants and opinions that need an outlet that may be sometimes… well… not so professional? I’ve needed a casual space to express my views in all areas, and sometimes feel like I may burst if I don’t get it down somewhere public. So this brings me to my blog revolution! I’ll try to stay out of trouble, and please bear with me while I figure out this format :)

Thank you so much to all of my visitors from all over the Globe. I can’t believe that my small contribution to the plumbing world has been able to reach so many, and I have truly enjoyed helping you all through your household woes!

~Kristi~

I don’t know… is it? When do you tell? Who do you tell? Well I guess in my case: THE WHOLE DAMN WORLD!!! Is there protocol to follow? Who do I run this by to get any answers? I haven’t figured any of this out yet, so I might as well spill the beans…

I am with child - again - numero two! Dos cervezas por favor… ooops, that’s not allowed anymore.

Yes, the Hansen’s have gone out on a crazy limb - if you think having baby number one is a bit out there, well consider what having two of them will mean! I mean, this is loco! Who’s idea was this anyway? We figure that this timing is most likely perfect - Ali is just about 2 years old (how did that happen?) and I’m currently 4 months preggers with the next bundle of trouble. All of you are already accustomed to me NOT working on your household issues or renovations, so it just makes sense to do this now rather than get started again only to pull the rug out from under you again.

If you are truly, deeply concerned about how far gone your PP has become (that’s Personal Plumber, by the way), you have good reason to be!!! The only reassurance I can provide you with is this: I’m still only an email away :)

I shall keep you posted on the progress, and thank you for supporting my procreationary endeavours! You’re children and grandchildren will thank me profusely when they have super hot, very qualified tradesmen groomed since birth showing up on their doorstep… hmmmm, maybe you will too!

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Ooops, I forgot to post this back in January! After rereading it, I decided it warranted publication… lol
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Want to ruffle my feathers? Want to see me suddenly flick a switch, shudder, and come unglued? Well you’re on the right track if you work for the government or one of its sectors! I’m so pleased to have this arena for expressing my disenchantment… :)

On an unexpected trip to the emergency room on January 1st of all days (not alcohol related and another story for another time), I of course had to check in with the ER Receptionist. When asked what my profession was, I responded with “Well, as many other professional women have chosen, I’ve set my career aside to be a Stay-At-Home-Mom” (note the capital letters). When I was handed my dodgey little blue card and printed forms, one piercing statement captured my attention in seemingly bold and blinking letters…

Occupation: Unemployed.

What? “WHAT?!?” I cackled at the receptionist “Are you kidding me?!!” Then in my most indiscreet of voices I guffawed at her “I am a business owner! I am a professional Plumber! I have invested 15 years into my career and made the decision to shelve all that I have built to have and raise a family only for you to list my occupation as UNEMPLOYED on your government database?!” She sheepishly responded that she could change it to Homemaker if I would like… Homemaker. Homemaker? Well that’s certainly better than Unemployed, but it still irked me. Homemaker sounds like you’re sitting on the couch eating bonbons and watching Dr. Phil every day (hmm, wonder what’s on today?). Yeah, you make sure dinner’s on the table but it might have been produced from the microwave. Stay-At-Home-Mom (or Dad, of course) is hands down the most daunting, demanding, stressful, and rewarding career direction I’ve ever plotted. Dynamic would be another accurate adjective… People yawn when you say it is literally a 24 hour a day job that you’re volunteering for, the audience is too young to appreciate you, and no one actually witnesses what your day to day encompasses. There is no day off and the breaks you do score are often fleeting - I have never known weekends to pass so quickly! Yet I wouldn’t change it for anything, I feel this is such a noble and worthy cause that I’m very proud of… but to have it demeaned by a government employee - a WOMAN who has probably raised her children and sent them out into the world - to have them summarize you as either Unemployed or Homemaker? Wow, that just doesn’t work for me man. How about…

Occupation: Successful Professional Contributor To Society Now Focusing All Previous Experience On Molding Society One Individual At A Time

I like it… now add it to your effing forms.

Ooooh mercy… it’s time to bite the bullet! I am terribly flattered that my cell phone is still ringing off the hook after 1.5 years of me being off the plumbing market - I’ve received many messages and emails from my faithful clients pleading “when are you coming back?!?” So here is my sincerest apology to all of you: I’m so sorry! I often think about jumping back into the circuit and putting Ali into daycare, but I can’t seem to take the next step towards doing this. He is at such an important stage of development where he’s learning something new every single day, and I have trouble imagining myself leaving him in anyone else’s care (except his fathers!). This doesn’t mean I’m totally absent, however; I’ve been helping some of you with your issues via email which is a rather savvy and engaging approach if you ask me! The thought of assisting homeowners through email coaching has been an interesting avenue to explore, for you on the other end as well! All we can do is give it a shot, and if it doesn’t work then it’s time to call Hillcrest - damn that Uncle Bill “stealing” all my clients…!

So what have I been up to these days? Well, securing a variety of futures for starters… you know: mine, my family’s, my wider reaching audiences, the trades as a whole, the planet Earth’s… that sort of thing. I’m getting into all sorts of trouble that will ultimately benefit a wide range of people. I know my blog entries are far and few between, but please continue to check back and I’ll keep you updated on what sort of projects and ideas are coming together for me. 2008 is going to be an incredibly exciting year, and I intend on finishing it with a BANG!!!

WOW!

That’s the best word I can come up with when thinking about a certain theme that seems omnipresent in my new life… I’m talking about poo. Turd. Crap.

Never, ever in my born days did I imagine that I would handle more shit as a mother than a plumber! So I thought I would share the comparison with all you mothers out there who maybe don’t have a full appreciation for what you are constantly exposed to. For starters, let’s give one point to baby poo sheerly for the fact that at least you know what it was. Those raisins were definitely consumed yesterday and although they don’t bear the same colour any more, you can rest assured that you put that into your baby’s system. Fortunately I have always made my own organic food for my boy and have quite a rapport going with his little digestive system - that jarred stuff? Forget it! If you want a guaranteed nappy disaster that seems to have been scraped off the bottom of a cow barn floor, smell and all, then you’ve found it! Stay away from that stuff.

Now that’s not to say that when you feed your baby food from scratch, that you don’t wind up with an offensively malodorous nappy covered on every side and angle - this also applies to your baby, especially when their kicking feet enter the picture. Quite the opposite is true, depending on what you feed your baby. Of course, I have been blessed with a baby who wants all things flavourful and spicy; curries, seafood, Japanese, East Indian… I think Asian Fusion might be his favourite. This gets a little hard on his mother’s very weak gag-reflex, as I’m sure you can imagine.

What does a Professional Seasoned Plumber do with such a wretchedly foul nappy? Well this PSP refuses to use disposable diapers, I could not sleep at night if I were throwing 15 diapers into our garbage every single day. I used a diaper service for the first 13 months which was AWESOME! Toss that shitty nappy into the bin and they take care of it from there. But in the last 2 months, I’ve decided to purchase nappies and wash them at home. After all, he was finally pooing less and it seemed to be of a more manageable consistency… well, some of the time anyway! Back to my point: what does this PSP do with atrociously soiled cloth nappies? I started off dumping the load in the toilet then tea-bagging these barely recognizable heathens in the water, but found that I had to flush and dip and flush and dip and flush… I, as a devout environmental PSP, can not justify that many flushes for one single nappy that remains filthy. So now I power wash what’s left in the bathtub. That’s right, I get the shower head on its jet setting and blast the leftover poo to smithereens! Now I know you might be horrified at the thought of all this fecal matter swirling around inside your tub and the extra jet action thats needed to break up the bigger bits to get it down the drain - so here’s a little info to get you through it: The tub drain is directly connected to your toilet drain. It is connected closer than the distance between your tub and toilet. The size of your tub drain is the same size as the trap cast into your toilet (you can see it clearly under/behind the bowl, the funny intestinal looking part of the toilet). There is no issue with blasting poo down this drain, except of course… the new found fecal content of your bathtub! That’s what CLEANING is for people, I have a new found motivation to actually clean my tub on a regular basis.

Some people might say “Kristi, isn’t that using more water than repeatedly flushing the toilet?” The answer is no. Look at the size of the tank on your toilet; every flush empties it. You can blast a nappy nearly clean in about 15-20 seconds which then also allows you to wash them on a shorter washing cycle. It’s working great for me!

I do hope that you’ve found this interesting and informative. If you have any further questions about it, you are always welcome to email me about it! At the very least, you could breathe a sigh of relief that I haven’t posted any photos to help demonstrate my point. Alright, back to work…!

Hanging with my fun little fella, of course! He’s 9.5 months old now and way too much fun; crawling, standing, hugging, playing, laughing… seems he does just about everything except cry, yell and fuss! A very happy boy, and definitely steals my full attention (knowingly!).

My tiny little world that has mostly known heavy machinery, dirt and tools has been blown wide open with all sorts of new things! We’ve been to mom & baby yoga, mom & baby snowshoeing at Mount Seymour, and now we’ve started parents & tots swimming classes… where was all this stuff when I was a wee sprout? I also did the rounds of some baby groups and such with my sister Erin and her 1 year old Giselle (this is Gordon’s little girl) and didn’t find them exactly appealing. They were just so wholesome and gentle, and I’m so… not! So a few of us have gathered together for our “Naughty Moms” play group which is awesome! I just knew there had to be other bad-ass poddymouthin’ moms out there for me to relate to. Sadly however, no one to talk about power tools with… yet… or endlessy rant about all the things to be bothered about with Mike Holmes… or to get really really excited about the infant sized Carhartt’s I stumbled across…

Hmmm… maybe a really enterprising new mum could lose herself in a project like tradeschool day care - where kids of various ages participate in the masterpiece coming slowly together in a mass of dirt, timber, clay, and non-toxic paint! Your child is guaranteed to come home exhausted and filthy every session, and by the end of the year we have sown a seed of inspiration in the kiddies to nourish again and again through the coming years! Forts, treehouses and sandboxes may never be the same again!!!

Now I wonder where we’ll find the time and location..?

So I decided to shake things up a bit; you know things get rather dull with a 5 month old baby around, there just wasn’t enough to do it seemed. I found that with so much spare time on my hands that maybe I should explore doing a simple project with my fresh new apprentice - get him started nice and early. Words now come to my mind, words like DISASTER and WHAT WERE YOU EXPECTING and let’s not forget HAVE YOU LOST YOUR EFFING MIND?!?! - all of these words in any order would have been helpful if they came before I started the job, but I tend to be a tad overly-optimistic when given the chance. Thank goodness I was trying this work stuff out on very patient and good friends of mine who have had unlimited tolerance for the work pace.

Here’s what I’ve learned in retrospect:

a) Plumbing is dirty work… hey, I know this seems obvious, but I have a different scale of dirtiness to the rest of you. I know when it’s safe dirty or hazardous dirty - my scale has now shifted closer to your view of it! Dashing between baby and work is exponentially more complicated on both ends when your hands have grease or glue on them.

b) Babies can only be temporarily held off by people they don’t know… in fact, babies are difficult to hold off by people they DO know, like aunts and grandparents - that boy wants mum or dad and when he’s had enough of others, there’s a very short list of who can come to his aid!

c) It takes at least triple the amount of time to do things with baby in tow… which isn’t fair to you, me, or Alistair. Nobody is winning in that situation!

d) I realize that there is only one of me and only so much I can give… I have a teeter-totter effect between one individual who needs me and a massive group of clients who also need me. Unfortunately I am NOT the “get a nanny” type, and there are so many plumbers out there! I know, I know… you want me! I am your plumber! You don’t want anyone else messing with your homes private bits! I completely understand…

So there you have it. This is a very special time in my life, one that I know everyone with children can relate to. Alistair is the coolest little man I have ever met, I am really enjoying this whole experience with him! I had no idea how much my life would change once he arrived, and I know it will continue to evolve from here.

I do have some exciting ideas in the works, ways that I can reach you and your issues through my website. My extremely handsome and tech-saavy husband and I have been brainstorming, so please continue to check back here to see what we’ve come up with! Until then, thank you SO MUCH for your loyalty - you are NOT being unfaithful by taking another plumber!!!

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As most of my clients know, I am pregnant… but things have advanced pretty quickly, because now I suddenly find myself really pregnant! As of this post, I’m 33.5 weeks along, which is roughly 8.5 months - this is a strange fact about pregnancy: gestation is 40 weeks which is 9-3/4 months, not the 9 months that we are all taught at some point? So I am officially term within the next three to six weeks, which is slightly alarming to say the least! Our estimated delivery date is July 3rd…

Pretty Plumbing is officially CLOSED until further notice!

I am entrusting all my clients to my friend Uncle Bill and his company Hillcrest Plumbing. You can phone them at (604) 879-1415 for any of your service needs.

If you need any renovations performed, please contact Shell Busey’s HouseSmart Referral Network. Many of you have found me through this route, so you already know what level of service you will receive! The Referral Network number is (604) 542-2236 or email info@housesmartcentre.com

Please check back with my website to find out my current status, and I thank all of you for your well-wishes and support! I’ll keep you posted…

Fusion Television has produced HGTV’s latest interior design show with a twist - taking Vancouver homeowners’ favourite indoor spaces and creating them outdoors. The result of Kelly Decks’ designs are stunning: garden settings for living rooms, kitchen cookups, classy dining rooms… and Pretty Plumbings’ contribution: a gorgeous Zen-style water wall and pond feature. All custom built, this outdoor office space is the peak of tranquility - I was definitely ready to move in myself!

I believe the first episode airs June 6th, 2006 on HGTV Canada, so keep an eye out for it…
www.fusiontelevision.tv

Well I guess the first bit of news I have to divulge is a pretty big one… I am the Preggo Plumber! That’s right, my husband Joshua and I are 5 1/2 months pregnant with our first baby. We’ve done a fairly good job of not allowing any such chaos interfere in our lives and career so far, but something dawned on us: I’m not getting any younger!? Oh that sucks… I am a career woman, I have had a full and adventurous life, and have big plans for my future; but no where in that plan did we factor in children. We knew we wanted a family, but thought it would happen when it would happen - well time has shown us that we’ll put it off until it’s too late, and we made the decision to go where no man or woman has gone before!!!

So some things have definitely changed on the workfront: I am more focussed on service work at this time, as I can’t commit to anything requiring my full weeks or attention - some days I just don’t have it in me! I’m much more effective on the service level at this stage, where the need to focus is only for a day or two on the same project.

What happens after the baby is born? Well we don’t quite know just yet, we’ll just have to see…! Life is for Livin’ and we’re just going with it!