Thursday, May 10, 2012

Innkeeper Profile 1.0

Shellie & Tony your innkeepers
Shellie is replaying this blog article about your innkeepers here at The Claiborne House from 2010.   
Alrighty then, fair dinkum, as we had a carload of Aussies show up at our door to check in last night, pleasantly surprised to find Aussie innkeepers here I figured I better post an innkeeper profile 1.0 blog article. The website is so jam packed with inn-formation, the more you put on there the less people read.

So for more details...we have the blog.

Let me begin by inn-troducing myself.  I did a quick review from my profile here on Coffee Talk and discovered 400 other blogs by innkeepers.  A few, a very few, had any inn-formation on the innkeepers, they were inn-cognito blogs of sorts. "Here's what's happening at the inn" period, full stop or cooking tips. Not all innkeepers are that boring! Or shall I say bland? I am a bit cheeky when it comes to writing, and this blog. This is a place to share more with our guests until we meet them in person. 

Not learning anything about the innkeepers before a stay worries me, as ya'll are staying in our home, so you should know something about us as well!

There is nothing mysterious about these innkeepers at The Claiborne House Bed and Breakfast.  I have featured photos and inn-formation on the website and blog articles from day one (on this blog alone I have written 766 articles to date!) We are open and friendly, not stuffy and cold, this certainly helps with the whole vibe at The Claiborne House.  

As I often say "This isn't your Grandma's House!" 

This is an inn, and the inn is set up for you the guests, not the owners. We're here to serve you and make sure you have a relaxing and enjoyable stay. We are not trying to be your best friend or entertainment, this stay is about YOU not about us. So this article should help clear that up.

Current photo 23rd anniversary Jan 2012
I am Shellie, inn-side innkeeper, Tony is the outside innkeeper.  In fact, Tony was eager to test out his new chainsaw today and to "nip in the bud" the mulberry tree that not only drops purple berries all over cars in our parking area, but also provides bomb-making-material for the birds who devour them.  (Don't worry we have a bird feeder where they can dine to their hearts delight!)

Without being too wordy (I know I know, too late).  I was born in San Diego CA.  Met Tony is 1988 fell in love with his Aussie wit and charm and moved to Sydney Australia where we were married on the Central Coast of New South Wales in Gosford in January 1989.   That was over 23 years ago...what a trip it has been, still in love and anticipating each and every day together.   Tony, who was naturalized Australian Citizen when he joined the Royal Australian Navy in 1983 was born in Auckland New Zealand, but he asks that you not hold that against him.  (LOL)  

Leete Family Innkeepers
I went through the full immigration process to become an Australian Citizen in 1991.  Until recently Australia did not recognize duel Citizenship, so by becoming an American Tony would relinquish both his Aussie and Kiwi Citizenship.  So that is the current next step - the only Immigration lawyers here are in DC - this sure ain't California! But we have been back in America since 1993.

Tony moved to Australia when he was quite young, back to NZ and then back again to Queensland where he decided he would join the service and faithfully serve for 10 years.  His ship was the H.M.A.S. Adelaide, which is now submerged and turned into a natural reef off the Central Coast of New South Wales.  No, it was not a submarine, it was an FFG.  Read more here.

Junie is our family dog
Tony's parents live in New Zealand, his brother and sister and families in Australia.  We have relatives in NSW and Victoria and my sister and family live north of Dublin Ireland and also north of Seattle Washington.  My parents (Dad who recently had a knee surgery) are now living in Virginia, and snowbirding to Southern CA like all good Canadians...except of course they are Americans. Dad was Union Ironworker his entire career and is now retired.  So his full time job is now hunting and fishing. Mom's would be to prepare and cook all this game he hunts and fishes!

So after 5 years in Southern Sydney (Caringbah living on Wallumatta Road) and Randwick (the oldest suburb of Sydney near Coogee Beach) we moved to Gig Harbor WA, then built our first home-home in Port Orchard on some acreage.  We adopted our two beautiful daughters through the Foster Adopt System and from there moved all the way across the country to Virginnie to buy and operate this B&B.  The girls love small town America, they have more opportunities here than ever imagined.  Marching band, church, walk to the library and park, and a school system that is in the Top 10 in Virginia.
Both kids are in high school marching band
Tony is the handyman here, although he holds down his regular 9 to 5 + job as a Network Administrator (i.e. I.T.) Shellie works full time plus here at the inn, marketing, blogging, website, cleaning, cooking, more cleaning and more cooking.  In case you have ever wondered, no the laundry never ends...

So this is the blessing we call Innkeeping, the reason you might be reading this, and we might actually get to meet you in person!  

Through our doors have been many interesting guests.  99% terrific guests (yes, the 1% is the one that will always getchya!)  But fortunately 99% is a pretty high average and makes this job fun!  I always say, and people are sick and tired of hearing it, "Variety is the spice of life for an innkeeper."   If we were in a typical resort area with cookie-cutter guests we would tire of the business.  Each day is new, each guest unique and it makes it all worthwhile!  No regrets, would not change a thing.

We hope to welcome you through our doors too. We hope to offer you some sweet tea as you sit a spell on the porch, serve you breakfast at our dining table and add you to the list of interesting guests!

Life is too short for bad coffee...Shellie your innkeeper @ The Claiborne House Bed and Breakfast in Rocky Mount, VA - Blue Ridge Country! You can book your room online at any time right here

The Claiborne House Bed and Breakfast is 15 miles to three exits off The Blue Ridge Parkway.  We are located at the half-way point of this beloved road in Virginia, exit at MP 121.  We were awarded a Certificate of Excellence from Trip Advisor - click here to see our certificate.