The next adventure

As I’ve mentioned before, one of the main reasons we chose to move (and bought this house specifically) was the need for a better office space. Our office at the last house was slowly caving in under a mass of disorganized files, cables, and Things PR People Send Me That Are More Often Than Not Addressed To Sarah Armstrong.

Hey, Sarah! Is there a reason companies keep sending you hand sanitizer? Oh, right. You keep mentioning that dog who eats her own poop. Understood. Except, why don’t they just send you a new dog?

I remember the first time we walked through the house, how we kept gasping around every turn, and it was all amazing and everything we could ever want in a home. But then we walked into The Office. Capital T. Capital O. And Jon looked at me and I looked at him, and cue the love scene from Top Gun. Except behind the flowing curtains you find both of us naked and licking the walls. And Tom Cruise is just standing there shaking his head going, maybe some people DO need medication.

No, really. It was a romantic moment. That’s the only way I know how to describe it. Like it was speaking out loud and asking, “Where have you guys been? I’ve been waiting all this time.” Is that gross? Did you just pick up a trash can and throw up your breakfast? Not my fault, dude. You better go get a pregnancy test.

The possibilities for this office are so exciting, both in terms of functionality and in terms of design. There’s plenty of space for storage, tons of light, and there’s even a nook where we can hold meetings together, meaning I’ll sit on one side of a couch, Jon will sit the other, and Tyrant will sit across from us and say, “It’s his turn, Heather. Jon, how does this make you feel?”

What’s even more exciting is that when our ad partner found out about the new space, they put us in touch with a sponsor that has been wanting to work with us and was looking for the right opportunity. Note: we’re very picky when it comes to working with sponsors for obvious reasons, among the most noteworthy being that some sponsors like to EDIT or CENSOR, so you know. Any sponsor that works with us has to be comfortable with sweaty goat balls.

And luckily for us, this one is. Enter: Verizon. Just what is it that they are going to sponsor? Well, I want to take you guys behind the scenes with us as we set up and design our office. This includes the orchestral nerdery of setting up our network, the design of the meeting space and desks, the organization of All That Stuff, and a look inside Tyrant’s point of view. No seriously. They have provided him with a smart phone equipped with a camera. And considering how much he likes to exploit my anxieties and thinks it’s funny just how easily I startle, I might not survive this.

You can follow his flickr stream here. (please be nice to him, he’s new to flickr, also don’t believe a single word he says about me)

Words, photos, videos. Meaning I’m going to CGI John Larroquette’s head onto Jon, Gisele Bundchen’s onto mine (in fact, I’ll just go ahead and use her whole body), and for Tyrant? Who is that villain from the bond movies? Oh, right. Jaws.

These posts will be interspersed between all the other goings on here, meaning I’ll be updating normally, and then posts about the office will appear as we make progress. So this certainly doesn’t mean I’ll be depriving you of Chuck or Bobo, and oh! The fact that I had a giant cold sore on my lower lip going into that photo shoot on Tuesday because of all the stress! And when they mentioned that they might be able to cover that up I asked what sort of tricks they could pull with my chin. Turns out they don’t make software for that kind of blemish.

…….

Many thanks to Verizon for helping us take this next step. This house requires a phone on one’s person at all times, so another big thank you to Verizon for the 3 Motorola Droid X phones that help us stay connected during this time of chaos and adjustment as we redo our office. We’ll be sharing some behind the scenes photos and videos over the coming weeks. Learn more about how Verizon helps keep you connected here.

  • imjeffp

    So now Jon’s going to be carrying two phones? How’s that going to work?

  • Kuffy

    Funny, Cause I had trouble seeing the pictures posted this morning through my reader and came to the site directly and thought – huh, Verizon is all up in this shit. And then reading this post, it was like aha, and then I thought, where are the iphones crying in the corner? Are they for personal use and the androids for business? Are we(and by we, I mean you) not allowed to mention iphones with the new sponsor? If so, I gotta hand it to Verizon for their clever advertising. And I am looking forward to the new pics and updates of the office. PS Where is Leta? Can we get more Leta?

  • bouched

    I absolutely cannot believe my “sweaty goat balls” comment still lives on five years later.

    It’s basically the highlight of my virtual life.

    LOVE!
    Jena

  • jen.yaya

    Excited that there will be more of Tyrant! Interesting sponsor for the iFreaks, but cool!

  • happyfunpants

    Seems to be a stretch that you need Verizon phones to communicate and can’t do that with your own phones…but hey – what good is being rich/famous if you can’t have these kind of perks?

    I’m a bit sad because I have always associated Apple products with you all. And that seemed more…genuine somehow.

    I have to say that if this is going to be a regular thing, you’re might need to doctor the photos though…they’re dark (because I assume they have no flash built into the phone) and we’ve been spoiled by the awesome lighting that you usually have on your other photos.

    Not sure it’s going to be a successful thing for Verizon, but whatever floats your boat!

  • tracy

    Funny that with all this design talk (and I LOVE design talk), my burning question is over the switch (addition?) to droid phones. And it seems I’m not the only one!

    Not judging, just curious!

    Tyrant has been added to my Flickr contacts & I can’t wait to see how the office progresses.

    Oh hell, I get excited over the thought of seeing how you’re going to design this house. It’s a gorgeous house, and again ~ not judging! ~ it just doesn’t look like a house I would have envisioned for the Armstrongs. Too traditional maybe? So, I’m really curious to see how you can work your modern magic into the space, and I have no doubt you will!

  • wordsupmixed

    you could have done worse with the sponsor. from my perspective (IT weenie) choosing between Verizon and Comcast is like choosing between a child molester and a pederast for a babysitter.

    And I’m still waiting to hear about the chickens.

  • Leask

    I’m ridiculously excited about this, I’m not embarrassed to say. While your home reno/design work is always interesting, it’s home office design that truly fascinates me (largely because I’ll have to do it someday soon). I can’t wait to get your take on things.

  • d3 voiceworks

    can you read me NOW?
    ;)
    isn’t apple/iphone heading over to vzw? i thought i heard that.

  • apostate

    Heather,
    I just want you to know that I covet your chin. I am a gal with chin issues. I hate my chin above all. I have NO chin. My chin just kind of blends into the rest of my neck, causing me to always look about 80 lbs larger than I actually am in photos. Thus, every time I’m called to wait outside the temple so that I can be in a family picture, I am distressed for two reasons instead of just one. (One reason is enough to deal with in this type of situation as I’m sure you well know.)
    I have quite large (and in charge) girlfriends with reasonably shaped chins who look much thinner than I look in photos taken from the shoulders down. Life is unfair.

    Every time I see Heather Armstrong’s chin, I think: Now there’s a girl with a chin that doesn’t just blend into her neck, causing her to look about 80 lbs larger than she actually is in family photos (standing next to her three size 0 sisters in law. THREE. All size zero. Even with the extra layers of clothing. I’m not shitting you.)

  • Truthful Mommy

    You’ll have to keep us posted on how the Droids are working out. I am in love with my iPhone but my husband keeps telling me when we move,I’m going to have to switch to Verizon. I’m more than a little bit afraid to give up my apple crutch. SO, hearing how it is working out will make it easier for me when the time comes. Congrats on the new office and the sA-wEEt new sponsor! Holy Sweaty Goat Balls, Batman…that’s awesome!!!Happy Mothering!

  • jon

    Verizon asked if we would use the Droids as work phones. Personally, I was dying to check out a sweet Android phone and was very very happy when Heather agreed to use the Verizon phones for work. It’s always good to see what else is out there and put it to use in real world situations. Ironically, it is an advertiser/sponsor who is giving us this opportunity and it is sweet. I’m not sure how much more “real” it is to use product x over product y, but I understand that some people might get jangled.

    I’ve heard stories of people having multiple phones (business people, famous people) as a back up in times of serious negotiating or at an event where one carrier might be hammered over another one. This isn’t that kind of a deal, but as a geek, I’m digging on the chance to put a cool phone to the test.

  • Greta Koenigin

    Tyrant is an excellent character. I’m glad you added him. And you tell a great story here. Never thought I’d be interested in the developing details of a home office, but I am. Bravo!

  • proudmary

    for the love of God and lost hikers, tell the people at Verizon that we need some cellular service in the Catskill Mountains of New York State! They won’t listen!

  • amw84

    I miss Leta. Also, Tyrant is hot.

  • lisdom

    I’ve had my Droid X for a week and a half and I LOVE IT.

  • Jules K.

    I can’t wait to see what you come up with. Will we see any of this on HGTV?

    Congrats!

  • Truthful Mommy

    @ Jon,
    I totally agree about the back up phone. We found that out the hard way. My husband is working contract for a company, had a VERY important phone interview with another and wouldn’t you guess it..AT &T dropped the call…TWICE! My husband was livid and that is when Verizon first came up for us. If he gets that job ( Thank God they forgave the drop and interviewed anyway)..we will have to switch. So, I am very interested in how it compares to the IPhone. Seriously, you will know first hand having them there to compare.Keep us posted:)

  • Ezza

    The timing on this is great, I’m in the middle of a home office re-design myself. (What is it the hipsters say? Squee?)

    I love how there is a community of people who are all moist about voyeuring in on someone’s new office design.

    By the way – I’m in Australia and I have no idea what Verizon is … I was reading it as ‘venison’ for a minute there.

  • heatherbot

    i predict you are going to love your droids. seriously, i looooooooove mine. love.it! my only complaint… battery life isn’t great. other than that, the phone is freakin’ amazing!

  • Wombat Central

    I’m still giggling over the nekkid wall licking.

  • Schnauzie_Mom

    Yay, design porn! Can’t wait:-)

  • Amanda Brumfield

    Sounds fucking awesome to me.

  • Daddy Scratches

    Man, what an unbelievable coincidence; we’re experiencing almost the same exact thing. Yeah, we’re moving from Boston to Philly at the end of this month, and we found a sponsor who’s helping to make the move possible. Perhaps you’ve heard of them; they’re called: My Wife’s Parents, Inc.

    Apparently, they really want their daughter to live near them again.

    Unfortunately, their “sponsorship” is actually more like a “loan.”

    I really need to get more readers.

  • Britiney

    Why don’t you just call Steve Jobs and tell him to get over himself and hook up with Verizon. Better yet. Tweet about it. We know YOU have the clout to make it happen. Pleeeeeeeze.

  • lizneilvoss

    I just made the switch to Verizon about 2 weeks ago, and I’m *loving* my DroidX! I can’t wait to hear what fun apps you guys download, so I can copy, haha.

  • vent

    Congrats Heather and Jon! Way to go! I happen to love Verizon. I think they’re one of the best companies for having the BESTEST customer service ever.

    Any sponsor that works with us has to be comfortable with sweaty goat balls.

    Bwhahahahahahahahah….too funny!

  • Sneeka

    For some reason all the tech talk is turning me on

  • skeabs

    The naked wall licking is funny, and I know you have to pay for the new house, but I’m pretty unimpressed by the selling out going on here. Especially with the italicized paragraph at the end of this entry. Don’t be a corporate tool, Heather.

  • jon

    @skeabs, the italicized paragraph is meant to be a disclosure that certain posts are sponsored as well as a thanks to the sponsor. While you might feel that this is somehow selling out, the disclosure part is a requirement by the FTC. Entities must disclose when sponsorship is taking place.

  • freckleface

    I know you have to make a living and I know that you are picky about your sponsors, and I’m sure that you really were happy to try out free new phones (who wouldn’t be?); but that italicized paragraph is so not dooce. I’m not against the sponsorship but seriously that forced, contrived paragraph has to go. This is coming from a girl who Loves her Verizon network and her Moto Droid.

    That said… I hope you enjoy the phone and network! :)

  • peashelle

    Haters to the left! ;) I think it’s ridiculously awesome that you’ve been able to make your dreams come true by sharing so much of your lives with us. Yeah, I’m envious, but more than that, I’m thrilled for you guys! :)

    Jon, I think it’s so nice how responsive you are to the comments.

    Also, my Captcha words are “Chickens RJ:” Predictive?

  • MsMLJ

    Congrats on the rad sponsorship. I love my Droid Eris.

    Like others have mentioned, I miss Leta too. She has been MIA on here for a while now.

  • lisaann

    Tyrant is cool, but..WHERE THE HELL IS LETA?

    In all of this moving it seems like a long time (blog wise,) since we seen or heard of her. Has she reached that age of eye rolling hands on hips standing “oh you are so not gonna put my picture or tell this thing on the internet stage!”?

    Please tell her that the Internet still loves her and thinks good thoughts for her even if she doesn’t love us anymore. (sob!)

  • the adams family

    I miss Leta, too!

  • Schnauzie_Mom

    I’m not sure why people feel the need to post something negative about the italicized paragraph at the end. I mean, if you start reading something you don’t like…stop reading it! And now you know for next time, avoid the italicized paragraph:-P I, for one, am psyched that we get to see the office renovation and how Heather/Jon choose to make that happen is not really any of my business.

  • Rebecca from Texas

    Heather! Jon! This is so effing awesome. You guys deserve all the greatness that comes your way. Huge fan and wish you all the best.

  • filmlady

    Just fired up my new Droid X yesterday. After all the suspense waiting for it, I’m not sure I like it. It has junkware that you can’t get rid of. I sucked at using the Swype keyboard app — looks cool in the ads, but made all my texts look like crdchs, so switched back to the normal touch keyboard.

    This thing makes me feel STUPID because I can’t figure out where things are. Yes, I’m an old fart (54) but I’m not a tech imbecile. Oh, and watch your battery, mine dropped to half within first 2 hours of use :-O Of course a lot of that was spent downloading a ton of free apps (there’s a lot of good stuff out there for Android) Have fun with it. And watch your back for Tyrant sneaking up on you with the camera.

  • Kirstin

    So no more iPhones? I’m a very happy former-iPhone, now Verizon/Droid user. I’m not against the sponsorship and think that you guys being able to support yourselves with this website is awesome but I do want to know if the Verizon deal means you can’t talk about your Apple products anymore. Or maybe you can’t even answer that.

    How about a *wink, wink, nudge, nudge* if I’m on the right track…

  • TexasKatie

    That is cool that you get sponsored now to build your office. Although I guess I am just not all that into reading about someone setting up an office that is paid for by a huge multi-billion dollar company. I guess I’m more the type who wants to read about someone fixing up an office that the regular peon could put together on a budget. But that is just personal preference. I have no doubt the new office will be rad.

    I agree with the commenters who miss Leta. Her absence from your site has been striking. I can’t remember the last post you wrote about her, or even the last picture of her where she isn’t off in the background somewhere. I am guessing she doesn’t want to be on the internets anymore – 6 year olds get a mind of their own. I guess it just makes me sad. :-(

  • JessicaM

    Congrats on the sponsorship!

    Running a business can be tough, and if you can get a break like that, good for you. With all of the bandwidth you use and the need to have a server/back-up, etc., I’m sure it will be a help to have a sponsor to help you getting the office up and running.

    Expecting awesomeness. Don’t disappoint me!

  • souphead

    congrats on the awesome sponsorship! i’m a proud moto droid user and can’t wait to hear what you all think of the android os. and that office space is gorgeous. excited to watch the whole house come together.

    Welcome to planet Droid Armstrongs!

  • swiftserenity

    You know, as I was watching Top Gun the other day I remembered you had your ‘awakening’ during that love scene. A bit funny how Kelly McGillis has come out now…

  • jon

    Stay tuned, @TexasKatie. I think you’ll find useful, affordable things being used to furnish our office. Our desks were $199 each when we bought them a couple of years ago!

  • KKW

    So does this mean my recent rant about Verizon in the Community will be eradicated? ;-)

  • genya

    Heather.. Sara… same thing but no, not at all.

    Reminds me of the time someone asked me after I told them my name if my name was Jellybean. Dead seriously.

    Cool deal with Verizon. I wish we had such fancy fandangled cell options in Canada. We’re getting there with Wind Mobile!

  • deege

    As usual, I had a mouthful of water when I read the naked-wall-licking comment. Naturally, water spewed everywhere, all the down the front of me, at the same moment the doorbell rang with the mom of one of my daughter’s friends at the door.

    Damn you, sweaty goat balls.

  • Braidwood

    Just call me Janice…

    When you said Verizon, I couldn’t help but think of this scary deal they and Google have going.

    Please check it out everyone and tell Google, “Don’t be evil.”

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/josh-silver/google-verizon-deal-the-e_b_671617.html

    And while you’re at it, please tell your representatives that you are in favor of Net Neutrality: https://secure.freepress.net/site/Advocacy?id=356

  • jon

    @KKW, Nope.

    @Braidwood, have you seen this:
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/t/google-no-verizon-deal-we_20393606477.html

    If you want to talk about it publicly, why don’t you ask a question in the community? Net neutrality is a big deal, but this post isn’t the best place to talk to about it. You’d get a lot more response in the community (and it’s one of the reasons we set up the community).

  • TexasKatie

    @Jon, I am happy to hear that you will be using affordable items to furnish the office! Don’t worry – I will definitely stay tuned. I couldn’t stay away for long! :-) I am glad that you aren’t going out and buying $2,000 desks just because you can (although if I could, I would – lol). Then again, sometimes the most fun part about decorating a home is doing it on a budget and finding beautiful things on the cheap. It is cool that you still stick to your personal style while being modern and current and fun.

    So definite thumbs up on that! :-)