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  1. #46
    Forum Member roarmouse's Avatar
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    I chuckled to see the Stephen Mitchell translation of the Tao Te Ching. He also wrote a translation of the Bhagavad Gita that I found so moving I transcribed my favourite verses. I've since obtained several other translations but his version holds a place in my soul.

    Peace!

  2. #47
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    Greetings,
    Would it be possible to get an update on the showroom remodel? How is it going? Perhaps a few photos of the current progress? Any unexpected surprises?

    As a TB aficionado, I really appreciate all the hard work that goes into TB products. The delight that I get each time I see the bright liner when I open my bags, the thoughtful use of o-rings, and the way everything works together ... it all brings me joy while keeping me organized!

    Thank you, Tom Bihn! Thank you, Tom Bihn Staff! elisa

  3. #48
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaGirl View Post
    Would it be possible to get an update on the showroom remodel? How is it going? Perhaps a few photos of the current progress? Any unexpected surprises?
    The remodel is almost nearly done and we're just waiting for a few finishing pieces (most notably, the hooks for our new bag displays are still at the powder coaters). It's so almost nearly done that it's even harder to wait for it to be done now!

    We're going to have a Keurig-type machine in the story for people on their way over from Seatac or just local folks who came all the way down/need something warm to drink. I finally found environmentally responsible coffee and tea pods that look pretty good through San Francisco Bay Company -- yay! (If anyone knows where to get fair trade/organic hot cocoa pods, let me know.) We'll occasionally have snacks too. When we have snacks, we want them to be homemade, so it'll be Tom (he makes amazing hazelnut biscotti) or me (I make gluten free/vegan cookies that are pretty tasty) or Cyndi (a talented and professionally trained baker) on baking duty.

    We're hanging stuff on the walls today, so expect a photo update later today or tomorrow. You can see previews of some of the stuff we're hanging on Mainframe's Instagram.

    Quote Originally Posted by AlaskaGirl View Post
    As a TB aficionado, I really appreciate all the hard work that goes into TB products. The delight that I get each time I see the bright liner when I open my bags, the thoughtful use of o-rings, and the way everything works together ... it all brings me joy while keeping me organized!

    Thank you, Tom Bihn! Thank you, Tom Bihn Staff! elisa
    Thank you, Elisa: that means a lot to us. Smilie
    Have a question? @Darcy (to make sure I see it)

    Current carry: testing new potential materials in the form of Original Large Shop Bags.

  4. #49
    Forum Member marytattoo's Avatar
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    @darcy I've been using San Francisco Coffee Co code for quite awhile now and love it. An drinking Fog Chaser right now and I like it better than rainforest blend. Also their Breakfast Blend. Not fond of French Roast though but that's just me. Feel good that the pods are almost completely biodegradable! I do also use the reusable cups into which I use my own coffee but don't know that would work in a store setting.

  5. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darcy View Post
    We'll occasionally have snacks too. When we have snacks, we want them to be homemade, so it'll be Tom (he makes amazing hazelnut biscotti) or me (I make gluten free/vegan cookies that are pretty tasty) or Cyndi (a talented and professionally trained baker) on baking duty.
    Darcy, One day I hope to get to the TB retail outlet... it sounds like you guys are doing a wonderful job creating the perfect atmosphere to complement your fantastic products.

    I don't want to come off as one of the internet "soapbox people", but perhaps you can reconsider the type of snacks you plan to offer. As the father to an extremely nut-allergic child I cringe a bit when I see nut products being considered. While my son is very careful and avoids home baked goods since they may contain nuts or have had cross contact with nuts, he can't avoid fingerprints (with traces of nut proteins) from someone who ate a hazelnut biscotti and then handled a bag or touched a display fixture. Even this type of contact can trigger a severe anaphylactic reaction. Thanks so much for listening!

  6. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darcy View Post
    The remodel is almost nearly done and we're just waiting for a few finishing pieces (most notably, the hooks for our new bag displays are still at the powder coaters). It's so almost nearly done that it's even harder to wait for it to be done now!
    This is so exciting! I was in briefly the store a few weeks ago, and it already looked so different from the old layout. I can't wait to see the final(ish) version of the remodeled store! Hopefully on Black Friday, if you guys decide to open up for a while. Smilie
    Rambling On. . . . .

  7. #52
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    I was there recently and I kind of like the look now...LOL

    It's wide open and you can see the workers, but the best part of it was you can see the stock!! Shelves upon shelves and boxes and boxes of lovely TB goodies!!!

  8. #53
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by giantsteve View Post
    Darcy, One day I hope to get to the TB retail outlet... it sounds like you guys are doing a wonderful job creating the perfect atmosphere to complement your fantastic products.

    I don't want to come off as one of the internet "soapbox people", but perhaps you can reconsider the type of snacks you plan to offer. As the father to an extremely nut-allergic child I cringe a bit when I see nut products being considered. While my son is very careful and avoids home baked goods since they may contain nuts or have had cross contact with nuts, he can't avoid fingerprints (with traces of nut proteins) from someone who ate a hazelnut biscotti and then handled a bag or touched a display fixture. Even this type of contact can trigger a severe anaphylactic reaction. Thanks so much for listening!
    Thanks, giantsteve: I have to admit I was totally ignorant on this subject. Are baked goods without nuts but made in a home kitchen that uses nut products for other recipes safe enough from the traces of nut proteins?

    And Hemel and Meglet, I'm glad you two have already gotten to see the transition! You guys will have to come down again soon for another visit, if you can. I think we'll be quietly open again sometime this month; all the very last details should be done by early December. Still figuring out our day after Thanksgiving schedule; Tom might be working the store a few days in early-mid December instead as we'll likely be working last minute details for Monday's (Nov. 30th) debut on that Friday.

    And yeah for the biodegradable pods, marytattoo! (Already ordered the French Roast but I'll try Fog Chaser next time.)
    Have a question? @Darcy (to make sure I see it)

    Current carry: testing new potential materials in the form of Original Large Shop Bags.

  9. #54
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    With regard to nut allergies, everyone's level of reaction is different. My son is allergic to peanuts and all tree nuts except almonds. He doesn't react to eating food that have come in contact with those things; however, he'll break out in hives all over if he were to eat even a couple peanuts, for example.

    Other children at his school have more sensitive allergies, where they would have a reaction to someone eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in the same room.

    When I have prepared foods for people with allergies, I make sure that allergens don't come in contact with the foods that I am preparing for those individuals. As always, the dishes I am using for preparing the food are clean, and my hands are washed Smilie.

    I would be careful to not use cast iron pans that are normally not washed with soap.

    We used to make and bring in cupcakes for birthdays when my son was in montessori, but my son's elementary school policy is packaged foods only to avoid cross contamination issues at home. Packaged goods will generally have information like "prepared on equipment that also processes x, y, z allergens" or "may contain traces of x, y, z allergens" because the item is produced on shared equipment or in a factory where there may be cross contamination.

    With regard to receiving a bag where someone has very sensitive allergies, I would wipe down the bag with a damp cloth, or even wash it in a bath of water and a gentle dish soap (Mrs. Meyers).
    Last edited by maverick; 11-05-2015 at 09:33 AM.
    -m

  10. #55
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    @Darcy,

    Allergies (with severe reactions) to nuts are not uncommon. Take a reread of @maverick's to New York with the western flyer thread. There are the usual great pictures, but I'll just highlight the text section
    Quote Originally Posted by maverick View Post
    hi folks,

    it's been a little crazy busy here, but my son took a day trip to new york city this past monday. we packed entirely too much stuff, but the western flyer made the load super comfortable to carry!

    inside was my macbook air in a cache (thought i'd do some work on the way back on the train, but we were both so tired that we slept sooner after eating dinner!), ac adapter, ipod touch in a small padded organizer pouch, 2 box juices, 2 box milks, a bag of chocolates, 4 granola bars, a bag of cheddar bunnies, 2 bagels, a 2" thick hard back book, two workbooks, two thin paperback books, a fuji x10 camera in the emc2, tickets and guides, and other stuff i'm forgetting now.

    we had a blast! it was cold, but it was also fun!

    we took the amtrak from union station in washington, dc to penn station in new york city.

    we walked down to the empire state building and made our way to the 86th floor observatory. we got the express passes online, which made this a fun experience! we got to bypass all of the lines, allowing us to make more of our short time in the city.

    afterwards, we walked to a nearby vegan cafe called franchia. the food was excellent, though we had a little worry at the end. my son is allergic to peanuts and most tree nuts, and we told our waiter about this. it was our first time there, so we asked for recommendations. we ordered mixed vegetables and tofu with a brown sauce (on the side), and pad thai.

    my son really liked the pad thai, but as i finished it, i noticed some peanut peaces. i don't think my son ate any, but to be safe, i gave him some benadryl. he had a severe reaction to eating 3 or 4 peanut m&m's a couple of years back, where he broke out in hives and had to be taken to the hospital. but the reaction came a couple of hours after having eaten the m&m's.

    fortunately, my son didn't have a reaction on monday! either the benadryl did its magic, or he didn't react to the pad thai.

    i know mistakes happen, and to their credit, the folks at franchia were very apologetic, and even followed up with a phone call to us the next day to make sure that my son was okay. i would definitely go back to eat there again. actually, jaiden liked the pad thai so much that he wanted to go back there for dinner that day! Smilie


    from franchia, we took a taxi to the children's museum of manhattan. this was not the most ideal choice, as the activities they had were more geared to younger children. so we didn't stay there long and went on to the museum of natural history. we've been there before, and love their dinosaur gallery! but this time, i wanted him to explore something else there. that place is huge! i could probably spend two days there and not see everything!

    we explored a little, and then saw the journey to the stars in their planetarium, and it was awesome! we both loved it!!

    from there, we went and picked up dinner to go at terri's an organic vegan cafe. we got a roasted vegetable sandwich, a meatball pizza sandwich, a couple of cupcakes, and some green juice.

    we took the subway from there back to penn station and just made our train.

    jaiden was asleep within minutes of eating his dinner, and slept until i woke him up as we were approaching union station. i also drifted in and out of sleep all the way back. it was a fun and full day!

    below are some pictures from our adventures...
    These allergic reactions can be really severe. For others, gluten allergies might be more manageable, and are another concern when traveling with your (allergic) kids, though it can be hard to find restaurants that specifically cater to this, which is why I added a postscript to one of my comments to @Toblerhaus:
    Quote Originally Posted by moriond View Post
    P.S. Totally off topic, but I was thinking about you and your Hawaii Trip earlier this year, since I found a nice restaurant on the Kona side that has gluten-free menu options: Under the Bodhi Tree
    Most restaurants that announce specific gluten-free menus will also have signs up about accommodating food allergies, and will be very aware of the kind of nut allergies that @giantsteve's son and @maverick's son might be prone to.

    HTH

    moriond

    P.S. No M&M's in your travel tray displays, no matter how great they looked in @Ilkyway's pictures!

    ETA: Sorry I see that @mavericj has already weighed in on the nut allergy issue.
    Last edited by moriond; 11-05-2015 at 09:45 AM.

  11. #56
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    Thanks, maverick and moriond. I'm aware of nut allergies in general, but was unaware of the fingerprint/traces of nuts sensitivities, so I want to make sure we're as careful as we can be. Maybe packaged stuff would be the way to go -- there's so many good options out there now!

    I meant to add: I'm glad your son was okay after that peanut incident, maverick. Scary! I am glad the restaurant followed up with you guys.

    We really have come a long way towards recognizing and respectful food allergies, preferences and intolerances. As a kid (and still now, mostly), I was vegetarian or vegan, and I remember it not being taken very seriously at some restaurants. My first job was working as a prep cook in a restaurant and I was so totally excited when, one evening, someone requested a vegan dish. I made sure everything was as vegan/non-contaminated with animal products as it could be. Now that's all so normal -- I note the deli staff at my local market changing gloves when handling different foods from the deli case, etc.

    I'll post some a couple of preview photos of the store later today. Smilie
    Last edited by Darcy; 11-05-2015 at 10:12 AM.
    Have a question? @Darcy (to make sure I see it)

    Current carry: testing new potential materials in the form of Original Large Shop Bags.

  12. #57
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    I don't know if I'm not being conservative enough, but I think it's probably okay to have allergens. Just wash hands after eating.

    Although, this may be hard -- no kissing the bags!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    -m

  13. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by maverick View Post
    I don't know if I'm not being conservative enough, but I think it's probably okay to have allergens. Just wash hands after eating.

    Although, this may be hard -- no kissing the bags!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Maybe they can have a variant of those aggressive signs you sometimes see in stores, like "You've kissed it, you've bought it"

  14. #59
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    Heads-up! Seattle Factory Showroom Closed For Remodel

    Just as long as we don't impede on an individual's right to hug the bags - that would be deemed cruel and unusual punishment!

    I fully expect that every bag and accessory I receive from TOM BIHN has been hugged by at least the individual sewing and packing it!!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    -m

  15. #60
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darcy View Post
    Thanks, maverick and moriond. I'm aware of nut allergies in general, but was unaware of the fingerprint/traces of nuts sensitivities, so I want to make sure we're as careful as we can be. Maybe packaged stuff would be the way to go -- there's so many good options out there now!

    I meant to add: I'm glad your son was okay after that peanut incident, maverick. Scary! I am glad the restaurant followed up with you guys.

    We really have come a long way towards recognizing and respectful food allergies, preferences and intolerances. As a kid (and still now, mostly), I was vegetarian or vegan, and I remember it not being taken very seriously at some restaurants. My first job was working as a prep cook in a restaurant and I was so totally excited when, one evening, someone requested a vegan dish. I made sure everything was as vegan/non-contaminated with animal products as it could be. Now that's all so normal -- I note the deli staff at my local market changing gloves when handling different foods from the deli case, etc.

    I'll post some a couple of preview photos of the store later today. Smilie
    Darcy, thanks so much for your concern and interest in the food allergy issue. As Maverick mentioned, the level of sensitivity to allergens varies greatly. Unfortunately for my son and many kids like him, a few peanuts would constitute a life threatening exposure. There is a great overview of food allergies on the website of FARE (Food Allergy Research & Education, a non profit that funds research, does legislative lobbying and acts as a clearinghouse for food allergies)

    As far as eating food, my son can't safely consume anything made in a facility with nuts. In fact, such an incident resulted in a trip to the ER. But serving foods made in such a setting at the TB store, or anywhere else, is fine. He knows to stay away from baked goods and at 16 he is learning to navigate through the world where food isn't always safe for him. My only concern is if there is food with nuts being served in a retail setting he could be exposed to trace amounts when he, and others like him, have their guard down. A store is unlike flying when the first thing he does is wipe down the tray table, arm rests and other surfaces surrounding his seat as he knows that these surfaces may have traces of nuts.

    You are right that dining out is becoming much easier for people with food allergies and preferences. I think that industry is coming to appreciate that catering to those with needs and preferences is all part of being in the hospitality industry. One of the leaders in this change is Danny Meyer, a widely acclaimed chef and restaurateur, whose Shake Shack chain is just the latest success in a storied career. Check out the mission statement for his company:

    "What does it mean to enrich lives? It means leaving the world a little better than how we found it, improving someone’s day with good humor and thoughtful hospitality, taking care of our community, making positive change in the world — that’s what motivates us to achieve at USHG. We love what we do because it matters to us. And the better we are, the bigger our impact, so we tirelessly strive for excellence."


    With a few small changes this could very well fit the Tom Bihn company. Danny Meyer is widely acknowledged as a leader in customer service and organizational culture and has spoken to and consulted with organizations and firms across many industries. I think a collaboration between him and Tom in this area would be interesting!

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