I never realized it but these two words speak so much truth to me these days. I never knew I would want to be the one to live a simple life. Now I don’t mean to say simple and to say the purpose of our life has no big significant meaning. As a Christian I believe we where most defiantly put here for a purpose, to honor and serve our Lord and to share his word with others. Fulfilling this purpose is defiantly an honored life to live.
What I am talking about is living a life where everything doesn’t have to be a big show. A life where you don’t have to post every moment on social media. A life with quiet moments (my life could stand for a few more of these) and no distractions. A life where all the little things mean the world to you and you see what truly counts. A life where you appreciate what you have and don’t take things for granted (this is something I have learned over a course of years). A life spent with your loved ones, not because you were forced but because you truly want to. A life where you stop and really take in the moment, because it’s a moment you never want to forget. A life where you are in the present and not stuck in some electronic device.
Now I know this kind of life can be hard to obtain at certain times in our lives but over the past few years it has really hit me that I seek for a simple life. I never realized it until the past year or so. When I was younger I was ready for the next best thing, I couldn’t wait for a party or event to take place or to go on the next trip. Don’t get me wrong, I still love a fun trip but my most absolute favorite place is at home with my little family. We don’t have a big fancy house, in fact we live in a barn but it’s a place we call our home. In fact I love our barn, it’s simple but has so much character at the same time. I love a home you can actually “live” in, it’s not a place where we keep fine china (we actually don’t even own that stuff) it’s a place we can be relaxed in. It’s a place if the floor gets scratched or a piece of furniture gets a ding then we actually love it even more, we just say it adds character. I have just come to realize I enjoy the simple things in life verses what I call the complicated.
If this is not the life you like to live then that’s A-OK, nothing wrong in that. That just means you and I are different. That’s what makes this world go around, other than the Lord himself! However don’t let it stop you from taking a deep breath every now and then and enjoying the very moment you are in. Oh and one more thing, I have to tell myself a lot of times to take a deep breath!!
Until next time,
from our barn to yours….
*Thanks Clairmont Co for the reminder to” live simple”. Yes we do sell these signs in the general store, come see for yourself!
Michael and I just got back from market and we absolutely can’t wait to show you all the awesome products we found. We picked up some leather good items, paper products, home decor and we even found a jewelry line. Everything is made here in the USA and we couldn’t be more proud of the artisans designing and creating these products. We will be posting pictures as things come in so be sure and be on the look out!
While at market we were able to discuss some exciting things for 2018 that we would like to bring to the general store. Sometimes so many ideas come to our minds that I get overwhelmed and think how in the wold can we accomplish all this, I mean it is just the two of us. Then I am reminded of God’s direction and guidance. My prayer for this new adventure we started last year is to always follow the path God directs down and to be in the center of his will. Another prayer is to have the courage and strength to remain in the center of his will, no matter how scary it may seem. God wants to get us out of our comfort zone in order for us to allow him into our lives so we will depend on him. After I am reminded of all this, I then feel calm again and just breathe! One day at a time.
I am anxious to be starting a new year at Raw Furniture Co. We absolutely can not thank all of our customers enough. Our expectations were blown out of the water for 2017, I can’t imagine what will come in 2018.
World Wind…is about the only thing I can think of to describe the last two months! What am I talking about, its been like that for the past year, since our little one was born! Ha Seriously though, after opening the store it has been non stop ever since. We have loved all the support from our family, friends and our community. It has been overwhelming to say the least but we are so grateful for everything coming our way. Since my last post we had the official ribbon cutting and the grand opening for our little business. We love getting to do what we love and to be able to do this as a family is really the biggest blessing. We don’t know where this adventure will take us but we never want to look back and think “what if”. Life is just too short to sit back and let time slip away. We want a life where everyday is cherished, spending time with family and putting your whole heart into something you love. This is what we strive to do each and every day. We hope to be around for many years but it’s like my husband always says, “when we are old and gray and sitting in our rockers we will either look back at this time and laugh or we will say this was the best decision we ever made.” I always love when he says that because the only thing I really hear is being old, gray and in our rockers! ha I just love getting to do life with Michael and he makes everything fun, no matter if we will still be making handcrafted pieces for you or doing something completely different. But enough of all that, let’s talk about what is coming soon to RAW FURNITURE CO.
SANTA!!!! Yes ma’am boys and girls, Santa Clause is coming to Raw for the First Annual Raw Family Christmas Day. #deckthebarn We can’t wait to share all of these details with you but until then, be sure to mark your calendars for December 2nd, 10:00 – 3:00. The man in the big red suit will make his appearance and he is checking list!
4 days…only 4 days until our grand opening weekend! WOW this is crazy, we have talked about this day for so long and it’s actually going to happen! We have been crazy busy these past few weeks with the soft opening, running the store, restocking items for the store, celebrating Waverly Mae’s 1st birthday and baby dedication, and getting ready for the big party at the grand opening. WE CAN NOT WAIT!!!
We want everyone to come and visit and we hope we get to meet each and every one of you. Our friends, family and community have been so supportive and we have been overwhelmed with the turn out in just a short period of time. We are truly looking forward to the big celebration this weekend. We love getting to know all of you and hearing stories about how you know one of our family members, or the churches you attend, or maybe just your plans for the day etc. We feel it’s so important to stay connected with the community and that is exactly what we want to do.
So come see us this Friday and Saturday!
Friday 10:00am -6:00pm, Ribbon Cutting @ 12:00pm
We will be having a drawing for an early 1900’s church pew. We will go live on FB and Insta on Saturday 3:30pm to draw for the winner.
Here are the ways to enter for your chance to win.
Oh and did we mention you can enter more than once!!!
1. Like and share our post about the giveaway on Facebook.
2. Come to our Grand Opening either Friday, September 22 10:00am-6:00pm and/or Saturday, September 23 10:00am-3:00pm. Ribbon Cutting will be at 12:00 on Friday.
3. Spend $100 or more starting Thursday, September 7th through Saturday, September 23rd.
We have a few other things in the works for this weekend and we can’t wait for them to unfold!! Looking forward to seeing you at the green barn, across from Academy Sports in Tupelo!
We are having this little thing called a “soft opening” which is suppose to be a low key, non advertised, trial opening before the big grand opening. Any quirks or kinks that may come up will hopefully get worked out during this soft opening. So what do we do? Well, we invite everyone to the soft opening! ha If you ask us if we are ready we would tell you, absolutely not but we just feel led that it is time, ready or not! We know within time it will all come together but until we will just brew an extra pot of coffee each morning. So here are the details thus far….
With that being said we have been wayyyy busy these past few months getting everything ready. We have picked up a few more vendors which are all local and everything is handmade. We can’t wait to share their stories with you, which we think is the best part and makes the product even better. We just know you will fall in love with them like we have.
We just got back home from a relaxing trip to Texas to visit family. It was Waverly’s first time to meet some of her Texas fam, it was close to 50 family members (my mother-in-laws family) who gathered at The Frio River in memory of my mother-in-law’s father, Robert Simmons.
We started the trip in Austin, staying with Michael’s aunt Sharon, and then made our way to Leakey. We drove for miles and miles, what seemed like to be in the middle of no where but, it was beautiful country and I loved the scenery. Once we arrived, it felt like I was 10 years old again, on a camping trip but, only 20 times better!!
A crystal clear river ran through the backyard of the “farmhouse”, the name of the house we stayed in. Hills surrounded the valley, which made for a beautiful backdrop for coffee time on the screened in porch. Cell phone service was VERY limited but, if you ask me, this was probably one of my favorite things about the Frio Canon.
Each night all 50 something of us would gather at the community house or the “red house” they call it, for dinner and fun. Every night was a home cooked meal by a different family in our group. The food was wonderful but, the memories we made will forever be etched in our hearts!
We loaded up the car to head back to Austin on Monday morning, or so we thought. Gaga, who is my mother-in-law, planned a special trip to Waco, TX, to visit the Magnolia Market. After a few hours of driving I finally realized we were not headed to Austin, we were thrilled and it made the trip even more exciting.
Once in Waco, we visited the Market and made a stop by Harp Design before checking into our hotel. We had dinner with Michael’s aunt and uncle and then finally turned in for the night, but not before a dip in the pool.
The next day we made a few more stops in Waco before heading back to Austin and catching our flight back home. It was a wonderful trip and we hope it becomes a yearly vacation to visit all the aunts, uncles, and cousins in the “everything is bigger in Texas” state.
So a lot has happened since my last post., more renovations on the upcoming store, orders have been delivered, vacations are underway and our one toothed little person is now 10 months old!
Wow, where has the summer gone? When I hear my MIL and SIL talk about going back to school, it almost makes me want to cringe, even though, I don’t have children in school, I guess it just makes me realize summer is almost OVER! Our target “month” for the Raw store opening is August, therefore, I realize my little world will be okay again. We haven’t set an exact date yet but our hope is August!
As far as renovations go, we have done a little painting on the inside, done some major cleaning, and we put up our store front sign! We still have a few more projects left at the store until its complete, but like Michael said, it’s starting to look more like a store.
Had to get rid of the bright blue and orange, see here for the before.
We also have been working on inventory, some new things I can’t wait for y’all to see in person. We also will be carrying some awesome local vendors, we are excited to bring their work to Tupelo. More on them to come.
Aside from business we have been gardening and enjoying fresh picked vegatables, chasing a little brown haired crawler who is getting faster by the minute, doctoring snake bitten dogs (Daisy is much better now) and enjoying vacations with all of our family members.
Summer is one of my favorite seasons for lots of reasons but I must say I am pretty excited about the next Season to come.
Demo has officially began at the store. We had our first demo day last week and boy was it work. We started out taking down all the old and I mean old insulation. Maybe it wasn’t old, maybe it was just in really really really bad shape, either way it had to go. My awesome sister-in-law, Megan, had the idea to take it all down and just leave the ceiling open to see all the wood rafters. It was a great suggestion and glad we followed through with the work. It really made a huge difference.
Next we tackled the upstairs, well Michael actually got to tackle this all on his own. Waverly had a Dr’s appointment that day, therefore, I missed out on all the fun. The upstairs had lots of junk. A few good finds but mainly junk. We will use the upstairs for extra storage and possibly an office.
Next up on the to-do list will be a good cleaning, trim work, some fresh paint, and maybe a few other surprise projects for Michael.
A few of you may know already that we plan on opening a brick and mortar later this year. As exciting as this sounds there is a lot of work that goes into owning your own business, a lot of work!!! Did I mention A LOT of work?! To begin this process we needed a permeant wood-shop for Michael, so the past few weeks this is exactly what we have been doing.
Michael got a great deal on a used metal building, which just so happens to be a building that was already in his family. Along with his dad, they took it down piece by piece. A few injuries may have been involved in this process but after a quick trip to the dr clinic, everyone is well!
We had to clear out an area for the new (new to us) shop, we relocated our wood-shop to our place at Crossover Creek. Next was dirt work and concrete, Michael got to help out a little with the dirt work. Just between you and me, I think his beard grew a little longer that day! He takes pride in working hard and I appreicate the drive this guy has, none like any other!
Getting the shop transported was another story, thanks to the help from my dad’s crew and my family’s sod trucks, made it a breeze.
Reassembly was next, Michael even had myself lifting metal beams wayyyyyy above my head. Lets just say I lasted one day and that was it, Michael’s dad came to the rescue. Praise the Lord! So once again piece by piece each one went up and slowly but surely the wood-shop came to life. This building has been an answered prayer, we needed so desperatly a place for Michael to build out of and I love knowing I can walk just down the drive way with a fresh glass of lemonade to my mountain man husband.
My name is Andrea Gibson and along with my bearded husband we own RAW FURNITURE CO. I hope to use this blog to keep you updated on all the crazy projects I let my husband talk me into and our simple country “barn” life. But for now I will just tell you a little about ourselves and how RAW came about.
It all started shortly after we married, we were living in a small zero lot line house in Saltillo, MS. A few months before we had wed, I moved back home from attending college at the Art Institute in Atlanta, GA. Michael was getting settled into his new home he had purchased prior to “us”. We were married in November of 2010, myself and along with all my luggage headed to that zero lot line house. As excited, as I was to marry the love of my life, I had never lived in a neighborhood but as long as I was with him it didn’t really matter.
Not too long into our marriage Michael mentioned the word “moving”, that seemed exciting to me, maybe a bigger house and defiantly a bigger lot. So we gave it some thought, and after a year of searching for what we thought we wanted, Michael had another idea. “Hey lets buy some land, move into my grandparents house while I build us a pole barn to live in, and then one day we can build our dream home.” Now you can only imagine the looks I gave him, he couldn’t be serious. Oh but he was and he didn’t give up until I finally said yes.
So off we went, after selling our house, we moved into his grandparent’s house, which happen to be next door to his parents, right smack dab in the middle of town. We bought a little over 50 acres and Michael started building what we call “The Barn”. The Barn consists of a pole barn with wood beams and metal trusses all wrapped in red tin and white trim, with two overhangs. I knew when we built our dream home one day that I didn’t want the pole barn to look like an awkward building in the back yard. So I thought lets make it look like a barn, fake hayloft and all. Oh but wait I have left out one major problem and yes to me it was or could had been a major problem. Michael wanted to finish out the inside of the barn with his own two hands…..WHAT IN THE WORLD??!!! NO NO NO, are you crazy I thought? In case if you are wondering he is crazy, but the good kind of crazy. You see this man of mine had never built anything in his life, expect a small shed in the backyard of his parents house and to be honest I think his dad did most of the work. He didn’t even own a hammer but he thought he would just watch some YouTube videos on framing and that would be good enough. Well I am here to tell you after those YouTube videos, some prayers, tears, laughter and a whole lot of hard work; we had ourselves not a barn but a home. However we still think it’s kind of cute to call it The Barn. Let me clarify some things, Michael did not put up the actual building itself, we had a work crew do that for us, but Michael with a little help from his dad on some weekends, framed out and built the inside for us. He also had a hand in the plumbing and electricity to save a few bucks along the way. About two weeks before we were going to move in, I had a nervous breakdown; I had waited just about as long as I could wait. We hired a few more men to finish up some things for us and it was time to move out to the country. With help from both of our families we were finally getting ready to move.
I was hoping Michael was ready for this move. It’s not far from his hometown, but he grew up on concrete and I just didn’t know how he was going to take living out in the sticks, where I felt right at home. I grew up in the country, close to where the land we were about to make home, so I couldn’t be more excited. Michael bought himself a John Deere tractor, purchased a couple of yellow labs, oh and the Wrangler Jeans! I started to see a different side to him. I thought to myself, well maybe this is what he has been missing the whole time. And I was right…Yep, now Michael feels right at home in these sticks. He tells me all the time he is just making up for lost time.
Well one thing led to another and Michael found himself building us a new swing for our lean too and a coffee table from old pallets. He found interest in this new adventure and started building all kinds of things. He had a great idea to sell some of these builds at local craft shows. I couldn’t let him have all the fun so I decided to jump in as well and started playing around with hand poured soy candles. We took a liking to all this handmade stuff and especially all the time we got to spend together. After a few shows the orders started piling in, at this point it was hard for Michael to keep up with all the work and continue his fulltime job as sports director. God has been leading Michael on this journey and we can’t wait for more of the story to unfold.
Truth be told I thought I had my life planned out, I had majored in Fashion and Retail Management and would had been fine living in a big city for the rest of my life, or so I thought. Michael’s whole life up until a couple of years ago had revolved around sports, he grew up playing all sports, played football in college and for the past 5 years was the sports director in our local town. Neither of us thought we would be where we are today but we have realized God’s plan is far beyond better than ours, and if we allow Him to direct our path, He will exceed all our dreams.
I can’t write a post about “us” and not include our sweet baby girl, she was born last year and bless her bones, she will also be along on this crazy ride. with us. Waverly Mae is her name but also goes by Wavey, Wavey Mae, Wavey Baby, Baby Waves or simply just Waves, I guess we couldn’t just pick one nickname.