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Hello Everyone and welcome to the August 2022 edition of The Nap Times! If you are receiving this and do not want a monthly newsletter from me, simply click “manage preferences” and click to unsubscribe from the newsletter. I totally get wanting to simplify and declutter your inbox and will not take it personally. 
FIRST UP: BIG NEWS! My bag collection with ABLE comes out in less than 3 weeks! If this is news to you, you can see my Able bag highlight on Instagram for the details. I created these bags to solve a very specific pain point and I cannot wait to share it with you! Because you are subscribed to The Nap Times, you get early access to purchase the collection (there is a very limited supply during this first launch). I will send an email when it releases exclusively to you on September 12 (a day before it hits Able's public website). Stay tuned! 🎉
OK, BACK TO BUSINESS. This newsletter topic is so fun for me: a Q&A with Nate! Nate and I have been married for almost 10 years, and I think he's the absolute best thing on the planet. We will end the way we always do, with current things I have read/listened to/watched. 
Let's begin!
A Q&A with Nate 🤓
There were so many questions submitted! We narrowed it down to 30.
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Before we begin, please enjoy this photo. Nate and some friends came to visit Charleston after our freshman year. We went on the beach all day, then my dad took us all out on the boat. We docked at a waterside restaurant for dinner, and watched a lightning storm over the ocean that evening. Easily one of the best days ever. We didn't like each other here. Just friends. Nate looks like a Backstreet Boy, hah! 
Give us years 1-30 in a nutshell. Tell us a little about growing up and your school/career journey. (Whew…30 years in a nutshell…good luck, Nate)
I grew up in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania with my three younger sisters. I had a rare and wonderful neighborhood experience, somewhere between the Sandlot and the kids on Stranger Things (without, you know, all the weird stuff). We rode bikes, swam, played sports, video games, and board games, hiked and camped, etc. Our parents gave us a lot of freedom. For the most part, we stayed out of trouble. After graduating high school, I went to Penn State. The summer after my freshman year, a friend convinced me to attend a summer program in Orlando, FL with a Christian ministry. I wasn’t very religious, but you lived with a hundred other college students and worked at Disney World, so I went. 
Looking back, this was the turning point of my life. I met Kate that summer. I started walking with God that summer. I made some of my best friends that summer. After the program ended, I decided to transfer from Penn State. Everyone on the program went to school in the Carolinas, so I went to NC State. After I graduated, I worked for three years for the same Christian ministry that hosted the Disney program, starting the ministry at Duke University. During this time, I decided to go to law school. It was also during this time that Kate and I started dating and got married. After law school, we moved to Charleston, and I took a job working for an international law firm. After about three years, I decided to transition to working in house for a convenience store operator based in Charleston called Refuel. My role was to oversee the day-to-day management of the legal department.This was where I was working when I made the transition to NTK. 
What is your go-to McDonald’s order?
At Micky D’s, I’m usually going with two McDoubles and a large fry. Occasionally, it’s “Old Faithful” – the number 1 – Big Mac and a coke. 
What made you decide to quit your job?
Our fourth, Alberta was a hard, fussy baby for the first month or two. I was still working full bore, Kate was working hard, and we had three other kids. We were exhausted. NTK had been doing well financially for a few years, and we lived below our income level. One day Kate and I looked at each and said “why are we doing all this?” I saw the transition as a way to spend a ton of time with my kids, slow my life down, and help Kate achieve her dreams. When I looked at it like that, it felt like a no brainer. We talked to our parents, and they agreed. That was big in giving us the confidence to make the move. 
What’s a typical day now?
Usually, I get up around 6:15 and unload the dishwasher and turn on the Weather Channel. The kids are up shortly after me. I sort of corral them until about 7:00 when Kate is done working out. Then I will go on a run (10-15 mins) and workout (10 mins) and get ready for the day. Kate will hand everyone off back to me around 8:15 until the early afternoon. She then takes them and I will work for a few hours. Then we tackle the evening together. We are still figuring out what’s best. 
How did you meet Kate?
Kate and I meet the summer of our freshman year in Orlando, FL (we were both participating in the same summer program where we worked at Disney World). We were friends immediately, and ran in the same social circle, so we would see each other often. It wasn’t until later on in college that we started liking each other. I wouldn’t say that there was a singular event. Kate’s ensorcelling charm and resplendent good looks got to me. I didn’t ask Kate out until we had been out of school for about a year; although by this time it was clear to us both that we really liked each other. I would say I felt sure even before our first “real” date that we would get married. We dated for eight months, then had a four-month engagement and were married. And then we lived happily ever after. 
What is your Ennegram or Myers Briggs type?
Not sure. Whatever number doesn’t like personality tests.
What was it like leaving a job you worked so hard to get? Fears? Worries? Explaining it to others?
The hardest thing was how to talk about it with other people. I had always done the right, socially acceptable thing from a career perspective. I had gone to a good law school and done well, then worked for a large law firm, then worked as an executive for a local company that everyone knew. I was climbing the proverbial corporate latter in a way that made sense when you met someone at a cocktail party. Now it was “I take care of the kids and my wife’s on Instagram.” Honestly, I had to decide I could live with the fact that some people were going to think that what I did was very odd.
What will you be doing for NTK?
Trying not to ruin it. In all seriousness, I think we are still figuring this out. Right now, Kate mostly needs time to create content, answer questions/emails, and think. I handle NTK’s books, contracts, help Kate edit her writing, etc. I run a weekly staff meeting with Kate and Jess (her assistant). I help with some of the longer term thinking and projects to help Kate shape the vision and values of NTK and make decisions through a helpful prism.
How did you get comfortable changing careers after all that time and money?
Kate and I made the decision years ago, and particularly once NTK started making money, to, if at all possible, live significantly below our incomes. We didn’t want to become “dependent” on a certain income and be locked in to jobs we didn’t like. Instead, we saved, paid off school debt, etc. We were able to make the decision without finances being the predominant factor. 
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Nate proposed in December of 2012 in a rose garden near NC State's campus.
What do you value most about Kate?
Kate’s the total package. She’s fun. She’s smart. She’s beautiful. But I would say I value her friendship above all. She’s a really good friend – she thinks for you, she’s loyal, she’s a good communicator, she values time together. We are good friends, and at the end of the day a marriage is about finding a friend and partner to make a life with. 
What advice would you give to a new dad?
Calm down. Most things aren’t as important as you think they are. “Where should they go to school? Are they getting enough social interaction? Do they eat the right foods? How much TV should they watch? How should I discipline them?”. I think that when it comes to parenting, only a few things truly matter and they are all really simple: your kids need to know that you love them; your kids need to know that you like them; your kids need to know that you believe in them. You can get a lot wrong if you get those things right. 
Tips for parenting more than two kids and bonding with each?
Still working on this. In terms of bonding, I want to try and find something to do with each of my kids that both of us enjoy. So far, that’s been golfing with Johnny. It’s been easier with him because he’s older and likes sports. I took Scout to a play this summer, and she loved it. So maybe that will be our thing. 
What is your favorite NTK recipe?
Bruschetta pasta or the One Pan Meal. And really any pasta recipe. My least favorite is probably black bean soup. I don’t know that it’s “Kate’s Black Bean Soup” that I don’t like. I think I just don’t like black bean soup. 
Favorite books/authors.
Living authors: I really like Amor Towles and Elizabeth Kostova for fiction. Some of my other favorite books: To Kill a Mockingbird, The Great Gatsby, When Breath Becomes Air, Lord of the Rings. I’m a big fan of biographies. I like Team of Rivals (Lincoln), The Snowball (Warren Buffett), and Manchester’s trilogy on Winston Churchill. I’ve read most of what CS Lewis has written. He has had a considerable influence on how I see the world. I also like George MacDonald’s and Henry Drummond’s books. 
What is your greatest strength and Kate’s greatest strength?
Kate’s biggest strength is her ability to connect with people. She is authentic and that’s attractive to people – both in real life and on a screen. I’d say mine is the ability to distill large amounts of information into digestible, actionable ideas or plans. I’ve always been able to get through a lot of material or learn about a subject quickly and grasp what’s going on. 
How does it feel to work for your wife?
Ask me in a year, lol. But honestly, I don't feel like I work for her. I work with her. There's a huge difference.
I love Kate’s “deep dives” of slippers, bags, etc. What would you do a deep dive on?
Frozen pizza brands. 
What’s one thing Kate does that drives you crazy?
Takes forever to get to the punchline! I’m not a good story listener. I think it’s the lawyer in me. In law school, they teach you to lead with the conclusion. (“Such and such is not legal in the state of New York. Here are the three reasons why. I will now expound on the three reasons.”). Kate will start a story with like “you will never believe the terrible thing that happened today” and then build up to the conclusion over three minutes and eventually I just cut her off and I’m like “IS EVERYONE OK OR IS SOMEONE IN THE HOSPITAL OR WHAT’S GOING ON?”  
Where do I shop? Favorite brands.
I really don’t shop. I don’t remember the last article of clothing I’ve bought. I usually just want until my birthday or Christmas and then ask for a new pair of tennis shoes or whatever I need. My favorite brands are Coke, Nike, and McDonalds.
What things do you continue from your childhood with your kids?
Letting my kids fall asleep on the couch watching sports. 
What is your perspective on child spacing, number of children, readiness for another baby, etc.?
One of my favorite quotes is from Mother Teresa: “If you want to change the world, go love your family.” I think what she is getting it is that “loving your family” doesn’t immediately change the world. It can feel meaningless in the moment. But doing “small” things produces large changes over time. Making something one percent better every day for a year makes that thing 37x better by year’s end. For the last few years, I’ve been stuck on this idea and how it hits a lot of areas of life. In fact, all of life’s great returns, whether financially, in relationships, or in knowledge, come from this principle of compounding. I’m massively in favor of having lots of kids. They are the best way I’ve found to compound your life, both your own personal joy and the good that can be done for the world.
How does it feel to have a wife so many people look up to?
I think it’s great! I’m one of them!
How are you handling health insurance now that you are both self-employed?
Health insurance was definitely one of the things that really stunk about leaving my job. I had good coverage for our family, and I didn’t have to pay much. Right now, we are using COBRA and still on the insurance from my job at Refuel. It’s more expensive but it’s not crazy compared to what I have heard some people pay. We can technically stay on for 18 months. I haven’t decided yet whether we will do that, or just stay on until the end of the year and go through the Marketplace for new coverage starting January 2023. 
What is something that Kate does that refills my cup?
I’m an introvert, and our house is really loud. She gives me time or creates an environment where I can be alone sometimes, whether that means leaving the house and going somewhere, or just sitting outside in the sun. 
Are you still doing any “law stuff”? Will you miss being a lawyer?
I have friends who are either starting businesses or working on real estate ventures or similar things, and I help them out with various legal issues that pop up from time to time. I’m not doing anything “official.” I liked being a lawyer for the most part, but I don’t think I’ll miss it. It’s a lot different than the TV show “Suits.”
What are your favorite things to do to serve your family?
Do things no one else likes doing. Getting up early with the kids so Kate can sleep in. Cleaning the toilets. Unloading the dishwasher. 
Do you see yourself going back to working someday?
I don’t know that I see myself going back into the corporate world. But I think I will find productive things to do, whether that means starting a business, helping others start a business, coaching/teaching, writing, etc. I think there are a lot of things I can still do to add value. 
What is your vision for NTK?
I don’t have a grand vision for it. I’m hoping it is something that continues to help people navigate life better and add a little joy to the internet. I want Kate to enjoy it and for us both to feel like we are adding value to people’s lives. 
Will you create a podcast or NTK membership?
I actually think a membership of some sort would be a way to create value in the Instagram world. Kate has done an amazing job at building trust with people. She says “no” to a ton of companies who are willing to pay her to promote something. I think a model where the subscribers pay a little bit each month and, in exchange, get a whole slew of things – Kate’s newsletter and other exclusive content, access to deals that Kate has negotiated with brands, etc. – could be an interesting way to align incentives. The revenue from the subscription would allow Kate to never accept payment from a brand, which would mean Kate would have no other incentives except giving good advice. What do y'all think?!
What do you eat in a day?
I stopped eating breakfast so by 11am I’m starving and usually have left-overs, eggs, or a sandwich for lunch. I sort of snack in the afternoon with either like a cheese stick or a few handfuls of pretzels or peanuts. We eat dinner early, around 5:30. Sometimes I’ll have a drink once the kids go to bed and read or watch sports (or both). 
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Back in 2015. We had been married a little over a year, were living in Durham, NC, and Kate was pregnant with John Robert! Annie the Puggle (who is still alive today!) was the first member of our family. 
That's a wrap from me! If anyone has anything further to ask or discuss, please feel free to shoot me an email:


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I started our family vacation with the third book in the American Royals series, Rivals. It held my attention well and was the perfect vacation read! I have enjoyed the series and now have to wait till 2023 for the next book.
I then started Anxious People by Fredrik Backman and wasn't enjoying it. I refused to have another The People We Meet on Vacation misery so I stopped it 20% in. I then started another Elin Hilderbran because she is my safe author. In this busy stage of life, I need whatever books will keep me reading, and hers always do. Something I noticed between Elin Hilderbrand and Katharine McGee is that they have the same chapter structure. The chapters and named for the character's point of view you are reading. It bounces around and really keeps me reading. 
I still have Salt, Fat, Acid Heat as my current bathtub book, and it is teaching me so much! Samin Nosrat is a genius in the kitchen. She teaches basic cooking principles in such a kind and intriguing way. She also has a series on Netflix should you want a crash course in the use of Salt, Fat, Acid, and Heat in cooking.
I listened to Raising Worry Free Girls on audiobook and cannot suggest it enough. I respect Sissy so much and this book was really good. Unfortunately, Sissy does not read it and the reader makes me feel like I am listening to a 90's self help book. It blows my mind that someone would put so much time and energy into writing a book and then allow someone else to be in charge of the delivery. Perhaps read this one if you can. 
Nate and I watched The Bear on Hulu and loved it. It's super loud (literally, they yell so much), and has so much cursing. What we decided we liked was that it's different. It's not the same tired plot line you have seen before. It's artsy. We also started Only Murders In the Building and LOVE it. I do not like anything the least bit scary and if I am honest this is borderline for me, but it's worth it to see Steve Martin. I adore him. He wrote the show. It's quirky and endearing and all the things you love about Steve Martin and Martin Short. It's also turned me into a Selena Gomez fan!
Alright friends, that's all I have for you. I am so excited and ready for September. Have a lovely month!