Coming Along...

Wondering what we're working on lately? Currently we are working on creating a strong financial foundation, preparing for a move to North Carolina (goal date: summer 2013), slowly building up a collection of spooky items, and starting our foray into miniature models.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Emotions In Business

downtown Mount Carroll
 Last weekend we spent some time in Mount Carroll doing a bit more research on our bar plan. We saw a few more properties in the area; we revisited the property that set us on this path in the first place; we reviewed the books for the business that we are hoping to take over. I'll talk about all of this a bit more in the coming days, but the upshot was:

*we really like the original building that set us on this path, and we could feasibly move in and take over even if we couldn't raise the money to make all the changes we want initially
*the books for the business are pretty bad, and that's concerning, especially as we would have to work hard to endear ourselves to the locals while we also tried to bring tourists in
*we have no capital to speak of, and raising the money we need is going to be difficult
*we really kind of love this place and want to do this. Or at the very least, *I* do. I'm not sure if my husband loves it like I do or not, but he's definitely on board with wanting to start this place.

So it's sort of come down to 'shit or get off the pot' time. I knew I wanted to do this before, but after this weekend, I REALLY want to do this. And that's scary. I've tried not to get too emotionally invested in the process because when you're trying to buy a place, that's the first thing they tell you - 'don't get emotionally invested; there are lots of properties, and lots of reasons deals fall through, and you can just keep looking'. I know that's true. But as human beings, it's really hard to move along with a dream and NOT get emotionally invested.

I really liked these booths (from a different property).
Now that we have determined we really do WANT *this* place, the emotions are rising. My to-do list has grown even more after this weekend, and it all suddenly seems so DIRE. Especially the part where I need to hustle and raise money. The amount of money we need isn't as huge as it would be if we were looking to buy a bar in a large city, but it's still a lot of money, especially when we have none to speak of. I have some plans in place for trying to raise capital; to raise at least enough of a down payment where we can convince someone to give us a mortgage for the place, if not a little extra to do some of the decorating and carry us for a few months of losses. All of my ideas take time though, and I'm suddenly feeling that squeeze of 'you don't have TIME!'

please don't fall through the floor, please don't fall through...
It's an uncertain thing. The building is for sale, the current business isn't doing very well (for a number of reasons), and the area isn't in high demand. It's likely that they aren't going to get any offers for the place in the couple of months it will probably take us to get funding together. Then again, it's also very possible that they will get offers, and that will be the end of this particular dream. For now.

It's going to take a lot of work to get everything we need together. I think hoping for a month is extremely unlikely; two months will be difficult. Three is probably more what we'll need to get all of our ducks in a row. A short amount of time and yet also a long amount when I let myself worry about someone else buying the place while we bust our asses trying to get it first.

my husband found this picture and these glasses in a closet.
Clearly THIS building hasn't been inhabited since the 80's.
I have so much work to do. So much effort to put into getting the money together, getting the business started... and so much still when it comes to running my family. So many loose ends to tie up, so many obligations to back away from, so many changes. This is a huge transition; we will be changing virtually every aspect of our lives. It's a change I desperately want for us, but it's ginormous. Almost everything about our lives as we know them right now will change. Our careers, our focus, our schedules, our proximity to family and friends, our finances, even our marriage. For better or worse, we will suddenly be together almost 24/7. The stuff we have; we'll be in the bar so much that we won't need most of it. (One could argue that I don't 'need' most of it now, but as a recovering semi-hoarder, we're just going to leave that one alone!) We are looking at huge shifts in our lives.

THIS unused hotel was... like The Shining or something.
Someone could EASILY turn this place into Raven's Grin 2!
It's... frightening. Don't get me wrong, I'm ridiculously excited. I want this, I want it VERY badly. But it IS scary. And I don't want to drag my feet and hold myself back. Most of me is ready to dive in headfirst. But it IS more than a little scary at times.
And the scariest part, for me anyway, is the fear that I will throw myself in headfirst and make tons of progress towards this... and someone will buy the bar before we get to it. Or they won't sell to us. Or something. Something to pull the rug out from under me and make it all go away.

Our daughter frolicking in what could become her backyard.
But one can't allow fear to dictate one's path, and as they say, nothing ventured nothing gained. Someone might get to it before we have a chance to do everything we need to do, it's true; but if I don't start doing those things, we'll certainly NEVER get to it ourselves anyway.

This is definitely not for the faint of heart though, I'll give you that.

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