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Boreal Community Media

Meet your Cook County Neighbor: Saffron Straub

Apr 14, 2022 04:20AM ● By Editor
Submitted photos

A Boreal Community Media Exclusive • April 14, 2022

So many of us know you from the days of seeing your smiling face at the beloved Harbor House (a place that we miss terribly).  However, some may not know that you are a self-employed business owner right here in Cook County.  Tell us a bit about that.

I’ve always had people asking me to do side jobs for them! I was actually picking up a lot of shoveling jobs when I was still at Harbor House. When the restaurant closed I decided to go for it; I started SS LABOR. I was sick of working long hours in the hot restaurant. I worked a lot of nights and every weekend in the summer! I wanted to be outside! With my business I offer lawn care services, raking, and shoveling. I actually missed serving tables, so I’m working a morning or two a week at Bluewater Café. 

What a year of record snowfalls.  Have you had a chance to slow down with all of the relentless snow that keeps coming, and coming, and coming?  What is the latest snowfall total for the year that you are aware of?

I’ve finally been able to slow down. Although I just finished shoveling a roof this week (April 11), that has to be a new record! It was a hard winter to keep up. I shovel for a lot of businesses & residents. When I wasn’t doing that I was shoveling roofs. 

I honestly lost count of the snowfall totals for this year! 

Funniest or oddest job that you have ever been on with your business?

We shoveled this roof this winter that had a crazy amount of snow on it! I try and bring my dog with to some of my secluded jobs so he can get some exercise in. Anyways, when we had finished the one side of the roof the snow was level with the ground. My happy black lab bounded up on the roof and hung out with us! (Don’t worry the roof wasn’t harmed). My dog thought it was the funniest thing in the world! 


Were you one of the lucky ones who had the chance to escape to somewhere warm for a few days over spring break?

I actually recently got back from a little vacation visiting family in Georgia. Me and my mom love to go shrimping & fishing on Jekyll Island! (Photo below of my mom caring a shrimp net). Usually me and my fiancé (Slade Bickford) get to escape together for a longer period of time- but that just wasn’t able to happen this year. 

As a young, self-employed female who owns a business that involves a lot of physical labor, you are a role model to so many young women.  What advice can you give to them on taking chances, defying odds, and following their dreams?

Believe in yourself & your vision of what you want! 

Sometimes you have to take a risk and that’s okay! That’s how we grow, become more resilient, and more confident. 

When you are not working, how would you describe a fun day off?

Even though I work outside it would be still getting outside! Either snowboarding, fishing, or taking my crazy black lab for a hike. 

What was your favorite dinner that your dad (Chef Ed) had on the menu for you at the Harbor House?

I miss all the food at Harbor House! Definitely the seafood alfredo though! 

Where do you see yourself in ten years from now?

I want to keep expanding my business & offer more services! 

Favorite part about living and working in Cook County for you?

I have some pretty amazing clients. I love being able to chat with them. Some of my clients give me small gifts; it really just makes my day! I also of course love the beauty this town has to offer! 

If someone wants to hire you for snow or lawn care, how should they reach out to you?  Do you have a website or Facebook page?

Still working on getting a Facebook page. The best way to contact me is via email, texting, or calling me. 

[email protected]



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