December 4, 2009 |  Category:   family life the biz


I know it’s not Father’s Day. It’s not even Mark’s birthday yet, but can we talk about him for a minute? As we make our push the next 3 weeks into what is our busiest time of the year, it just can’t be said enough how hard the guy works. I mean we’re both working an insane amount of hours right now, but most of my time is spent staring in front of this machine pushing pixels, emailing customers, talking to clients on the phone and packaging things when I can. Mark, on the other hand, has been running all over the city making deliveries, going to the post office, picking up supplies (sometimes even with a kid in tow), and doing his fair share of dropping off and picking up the girls, making dinner and putting the kids to bed all in a single day. And when he’s not doing that, he’s in the kitchen for 5-9 hours a day baking up to 2000 cookies a day and single-handedly filling orders by himself most of the time, which includes packaging cookies, organizing orders and packing it all up for postal drop off.

Essentially, Mark can and is doing the work of 2-3 people. How does he do it? I think perhaps all his years working in hectic restaurant kitchens has prepared him to be extremely fast and efficient. It’s certainly the best training for this business that he could have had and no matter how slammed we get, he manages to get everything done somehow. But did you know that he also has 2 other consulting jobs? When he left his position as Pastry Chef at the Central Park Boathouse 2 years ago, the restaurant never replaced him. They tried and one chef quit after a month, so Mark’s been going in one day a week most weeks working on their dessert menus. He also now makes the desserts for Bussaco, the restaurant where he does his baking, a decision that came after new chef and co-owner, the much celebrated Katy Sparks, stepped in about a month ago. That’s just a lot of work for one person and he rarely has a day off anymore.

So in the spirit of trying to keep upbeat while plowing through another holiday season – a month that should be spent going to holiday parties, doing a little Christmas shopping and taking the kids to holiday events around the city, but which now represents sleepless nights, hectic work days and no time off till it’s done for us and ALL small business owners out there who are working hard to meet holiday orders (kudos and good luck to everyone in the same situation as us) – I just want to take a moment and celebrate a guy who is the hardest working guy I know, a guy who remains good natured and never complains no matter how crazy it gets, and who still has time to be a great dad. Here are a few of my favorite pictures of Mark and the girls.











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  • NBK December 4, 2009 at 10:26 am

    Your family is cutness overload.

  • Tamara December 4, 2009 at 10:33 am

    lovely photos as always! Although it’s a very hectic time for you guys, I hope you’ll be able to find some time to enjoy the holiday season!

  • natalie December 4, 2009 at 10:34 am

    Fantastic tribute. What a great family.

  • Lani December 4, 2009 at 10:48 am

    Wow. Very nice, Jenna. I agree with every word!

  • veronica December 4, 2009 at 10:49 am

    i’ve been following your blog for a while, but this is my first comment. with both my parents owning their own small businesses, i can identify with some of the hardships and burdens that you and mark must be facing. i love your heartwarming entries, as well as the ones that address more serious topics and concerns. most of all, i really appreciate your honesty. this was a great post 🙂

  • cini.queeni December 4, 2009 at 11:03 am

    good dads are pretty much the sexiest thing

  • jackie December 4, 2009 at 11:06 am

    yay for good dads! every girl deserves one.

  • Qwerty December 4, 2009 at 11:06 am

    Such a sweet post! Thanks for sharing this!

  • Sooshi December 4, 2009 at 11:17 am

    I think you just turned me into a pile of goo

  • nichole Robertson December 4, 2009 at 11:20 am

    I clutched my chest when I saw that last photo. A huge shout out to Mark!

  • Caroline December 4, 2009 at 11:32 am

    This is such a sweet post, and Mark definitely is a Superman. You guys are very lucky to have him 🙂

  • Lois December 4, 2009 at 11:34 am

    Oh Jenna, I was getting teary-eyed as I read your post and lingered over your beautiful photos of Mark and the girls. It’s really heartwarming and encouraging to see (and read) how you and Mark band together as parents and partners in life through thick and thin. Thank you for sharing with us.

  • moodboard December 4, 2009 at 11:51 am

    oh my gosh, the picture with claudine’s tiny face poking out of his coat and his hand resting on Mia’s head *cries* so sweet.

  • Christie December 4, 2009 at 11:55 am

    I also got teary eyed reading this. What a beautiful entry. Sounds like you have an incredible husband whose a great chef and a loving father to your little girls. How wonderful. Blessings all around.

  • Niki December 4, 2009 at 12:11 pm

    What a touching and well-deserved tribute! The photos are so amazing and , Jenna, your words are full of love and appreciation…it’s really wonderful. Big KUDOS to Mark for being such a hard worker and devoted family man. There’s no greater success in the world than being a good parent. Have a great weekend, you guys! 🙂

  • Erika December 4, 2009 at 12:37 pm

    Such a lovely and sweet post. He IS a superman!

  • Claudia December 4, 2009 at 12:42 pm

    I almost cried reading your blog today. You were very kind expliciting your grateful and recognition about Mark and sharing it with your readers. My husband is also a multitask man, including the job, the households chores and my kids care and reading your post made me reflect about how I am lucky being married with him. Thank you for your post today.

  • cyndi December 4, 2009 at 12:55 pm

    Jenna, I have tears in my eyes. I can feel the amazing love you have for Mark and think this was such a touching tribute to that love. The pictures are fantastic and the last one made my heart melt. You are a beautiful family and the love you share will help you get through this crazy busy holiday season.

  • alice @quaintliving December 4, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    That is so sweet! Those photos kill me. Good luck to you both in this busy season.

  • danielle December 4, 2009 at 1:05 pm

    Your children are absolutely beautiful. I found out about your blog on Moodboard.

  • Chery December 4, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    You have such a lovely family!
    Mark – You are one awesome Dad!

  • alli from hooray December 4, 2009 at 1:21 pm

    What a sweet post! Best of luck to your family & business during this craazy time of year. Love your blog.

  • Tumus December 4, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    All the best guys. Mark you rock, stay sane.

  • Laura December 4, 2009 at 2:11 pm

    what a lovely post. your daughters will be so grateful to have had their dad so much a part of their lives.

  • Ann December 4, 2009 at 2:41 pm

    Okay, this post turned me into a weepy fool.

    Mark: stay awesome.

  • mixette December 4, 2009 at 3:34 pm

    When they get older, your girls are going to love that they have so many great pictures with their dad. The hug train is awesome.

    Mad props to Mark!

  • Megan December 4, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    What a lovely post! Beautiful family. ::hugs::

  • Jen December 4, 2009 at 5:54 pm

    Bless you.

    The first picture, that lovely rug — where do I find one of these?

  • kribss December 4, 2009 at 6:46 pm

    he seems to be the strong, silent type. what an awesome and loving tribute to your man!

  • Lee December 4, 2009 at 7:57 pm

    What. An. Undeniably. Lovely. Entry!

  • Chai Ling December 4, 2009 at 8:08 pm

    Jenna, you are a lucky woman!
    Hat’s off to all the men in the world like your man, Jenna.
    A lovely family always ~

  • unha December 4, 2009 at 10:58 pm

    this made me teary eyed. xoxo

  • quyen huynh December 4, 2009 at 11:58 pm

    What a great tribute to Mark! Thanks for sharing.

  • sally December 5, 2009 at 12:14 am

    superman, indeed!

  • Lecia December 5, 2009 at 12:47 am

    This is an amazing set of pictures, and such a nice tribute to your husband. Your daughters will really appreciate being able to look back on this record of their lives at this point in time.

  • Dinah December 5, 2009 at 1:45 am

    Oh, Jenna.

    I’ve been zipping around like crazy all week selling off a bunch of excess supplies. And in the midst of it, sometimes not knowing whether I was coming or going, I’d think of you guys. “This is their every day? Every week? How do they do it??”

    What a wonderful way to celebrate your hero at home. Just beautiful.

  • Angela December 5, 2009 at 4:13 am

    that is really too precious. what a sweet sweet post!

  • Zooey December 5, 2009 at 11:15 am

    That is so amazing. Thank you for sharing with us. Kudos to Mark and all the great men & dads in the world 🙂

  • sooki December 5, 2009 at 12:19 pm

    most of the time lurker, delurking to say… melt. my. heart. mark sounds like an amazing dad and husband. so much love in these photos.

  • amber of December 5, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    I love this. I can picture your girls, years and years from now, showing these off and going, “Oh, this is me and my dad! Look how YOUNG he looked!”

  • Alexandra December 5, 2009 at 6:02 pm

    Yes, I think that all of us want Mark to be our dad.

  • ChantaleP December 5, 2009 at 6:48 pm

    So sweet! Hang in there guys.. and I really really hope you get to enjoy the holiday season as well!

  • jenifer December 5, 2009 at 6:51 pm

    i am 16, and i really cant connect to most of your struggles.
    but hearing the other side of parents is so mind opening.
    i love your blog, mostly because its honest and truthful.
    thank you

  • RJ December 5, 2009 at 11:40 pm

    … sweet jenna…!

  • ranee December 6, 2009 at 1:43 am

    hwaaa……………. what a real superman and lucky little girls.
    I admire your family so….. much

  • kate December 6, 2009 at 4:48 am

    that actually made me cry. beautiful.

  • Clouds December 6, 2009 at 5:50 am

    Mark is fantastic. I want someone just like him! 🙂

  • Annie From Seattle December 6, 2009 at 9:31 am

    Nice. Cheers to Mark!

  • cvjn December 6, 2009 at 11:04 am

    so sweet. it’s easy to forget to appreciate your spouse, so it’s lovely that you took the time to publicly acknowledge Mark.

    (won’t it be awesome when this post gets MORE comments than bitergate!)

    happy happy holidays to you and your lovely family.

  • Kate December 6, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    I’ve been enjoying your blog since the summer, but haven’t yet left a comment. I couldn’t read this kind-hearted entry without saying something, though! How thoughtful of you to pay tribute to your husband this way–he seems like a great Dad.
    Good luck getting through the holidays!

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