As a kid...
I would spend every summer in the Tucson desert working with my Grampa. I was taught how to shovel rock (lots of rock, during the summer no less) and I learned what craftsmanship was. He wouldn't allow me to use any power tools until I made it through basic training - hand tools. The man would build his own house, aircraft hangar, and three kit airplanes before he passed in 2013. He taught me the patience and detail of an artist, but also let me learn and fail as a craftsman. By the time I was late high school my parents allowed me to design and build my very own bed ~ little did I know, this was only the start.
With all the construction exposure from my GP as a kid I always wanted to grow up and be the guy in nice work clothes among a bunch of hard hat wearing people pointing to the sky with a set of plans. So.. I went to college and got my degree in Virtual Construction Design and did just that. Prior to my career shift to self employment I would achieve my dream job.. designing hospitals and complex operating rooms. I was that guy pointing to the sky with my set of drawings! I would design the electrical systems and would coordinate with my field crew on how to build them and install them per my drawings.
Brilliant Water Features
Once I was grown up enough to by my own house I started building and fixing everything. With my the knowledge my GP gave me, along with my design background, I would start my first legitimate company. Brilliant Water Features, https://www.youtube.com/user/brilliantWTRfeatures. I build them now more so as a fun hobby for friends and donations. Over the course of 15 years time I had built and shipped water features all over the country. Complex mechanical designs, stuff I had never done before, but it was the teachings of GP that enabled me to do so.
Grampa's final years
As the complexities of my water feature projects would continue I would frequently reach out to Grampa for guidance and wisdom. He had such a knack for teaching and guiding. As the years would carry on he would on occasion reach out to me for guidance. Up until his passing in 2013, he was my go to person for business, life, and craftsmanship. Today, in his absence, everything I do is filtered through the lens of him...WWGD "What Would Grapma Do". He was a selfless and authentic man who defined true solid work-ethic, a handshake meant something, and had a deep appreciation for the human spirit.
After GP, on my own, self employed
In 2015 I would leave my dream job designing hospitals and pursue a career in real estate. I was at a point in my life where connecting and helping people was more important than design projects. So, I worked both the day job and water features to prepare for the launch. I practiced in the spirit of my GP and was able to go full-time real estate in 6 months or so. Since then, I've not looked back. (although I very much miss design and complex construction) It was going into real estate that brings me here, to, today.
8/28 on 8/28 | RIP Grampa
The real estate industry exposed me to a big problem. It amazed me how important service people are, yet, many cannot follow through and provide good service. With all of my construction experience and handy'ness, I would frequently be called upon from friends, family, even clients who needed help around the house. This and a collection of other things lead me to the conclusion to raise the bar and take all my experience as a craftsman AND real estate agent and lend another hand for reliable service. The GUD Hand LLC was born! Because hell or high water, when things get complicated you always need a Gud Hand to help!
The future, a legacy~
As I continue in life I'm far more aware of things than I used to. The trade teachings in schools are no more, our society is getting older, and the younger people are more educated with their head than they are with their hands. I had a gift of an opportunity learning and practicing under my GP. Now and into the future I can pass it forward by teaching my boys how to fix things, how to serve people in a capacity of old world teachings. Someday when I am no longer here my boys will know how to spell "HAMMER" and also lend a good hand when someone calls upon them.
So many would tell me to not be so transparent or spend the detailed time to give you a rich history of who I am, where I've come from, and where I hope to go. I believe that we need more storytelling in our lives.
I hope that my story here shines some light on the person I am and am trying to become/keep up with. I want you to feel comfortable knowing me more than just some blurb about I can do anything.
There is a lot here, so thank you for taking the time to read my story. If you would like to read more of my thoughts and perspective on life, building cool shit, damn delicious recipes and the PHX Real Estate market, please visit my weekly picture blog www.GratefulMan.com
As stated earlier, thank you and I'm grateful for your time,
The Gud Handyman :)