27 September 2007


Changes-David Bowie
I still don't know what I was waiting for
And my time was running wild
A million dead-end streets
Every time I thought I'd got it made
It seemed the taste was not so sweet
So I turned myself to face me
But I've never caught a glimpse
Of how the others must see the faker
I'm much too fast to take that test
Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes(Turn and face the strain)Ch-ch-Changes
Don't want to be a richer man
Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes(Turn and face the strain)Ch-ch-Changes
Just gonna have to be a different man
Time may change me.
But I can't trace time...

This song made an impression on me when I was a teenager. Adding to the allure was the fact that David Bowie was having issues with his label (at the time) and you could not buy it anywhere, but that is a different story...
If you asked me at seven what I wanted to be when I grew up I would have said a chemist. Fast forward to fourteen and I wanted to be a combat pilot in the Navy. Later in my teens I thought I would be single and probably working for the FAA, like my father did, but being an air traffic controller (yikes!) In college I entertained the idea of being a flight attendant. If you know me you are rolling on the floor laughing hysterically at this... I worked at Radio Shack during college and to date have never loved a job so much. Too bad the pay sucked eggs. For a brief moment in time I worked in computers and was a project manager. Right after I got married I had a momentary lapse of reason where I thought I might want to stay home. That passed quickly, thank goodness, when we moved across the country to NH. We then had a chance to be business owners. It sounded perfect to me. My brother owned his own business, and my father in law had nothing but positive things to say for that avenue. When I first started the business I had it in my plan to sell the business after five years or so. Five years came and went and we still had the business. Art was very content where he was at, and I enjoyed the freedom and flexibility we had. Pellet seemed to be taking off and we thought we would be foolish to jump ship. Then it all seemed to screech to a halt. The government incentive that we all worked so hard on turned out to be for lack of better terms just a political tool so they could say they supported alternative energy, never mind that they never intended to fund it... Then oil prices came crashing down, and pellet prices shot up. Add to that the soft economy, crashing home loan scandal, and failing consumer confidence and our industry has had a couple of tough years- hearth in general not just pellet. So with the ever face of change we find that we may be at a turning point. Our main stove company was just purchased by a much larger hearth group. Our stove company was the last of the family run stove manufacturers. There is much speculation of what this will do to the line, and the people involved in promoting and selling their products. We don't have to look too far back in our own history to see what a disaster Lennox buying (and consequently destroying) Whitfield turned out to be. We also got a potentially serious offer from someone to buy our business. While we are extremely skeptical and extremely leary I imagine we will at least talk about that prospect. But then what? I always knew what I wanted to do even if the 'what' changed from year to year, but without this I am not sure. Where do you go from here? Do we stay in the industry we have worked so hard to promote and support, or do we make a complete change, or do we ride the tide, hope for the best, and see how it plays out? One thing is for sure. It's never dull or predictable around here...

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