After first announcing her retirement from Two Chicks & a Hammer this past fall, Good Bones star, Karen Laine, is appreciating time away from the renovation company built off-screen from the ground up with daughter, Mina Starsiak-Hawk more than a decade ago. But with news of Laine laying down the hammer as Starsiak-Hawk heads the company with a team that includes sister Kelsy Gray and close family friend Alexa Howell, confusion has sprung up among fans assuming retirement consists of an exit from the HGTV series. Fortunately, that is not the case as Laine tells PopCulture.com exclusively she is not leaving the show — something that will provide a sigh of relief to fans.
"So it's really simple. I retired from the company, Two Chicks and a Hammer, because there comes a certain time where you need to let the next generation run things," Laine told PopCulture, confirming she is still on the HGTV show with her daughter. "A crucial thing for a founder to know is when is it time to step back and let the kids do what the kids are going to do. It's part of Maslow's hierarchy of needs. You get to a point, and one of the things you're supposed to be doing is generativity, which is, you've created something, and now you can move on."
Proud of what Starsiak-Hawk, Gray, and Howell have accomplished with the company — which most recently opened their first boutique and bistro, District Co. in the Bates-Hendricks area of Indianapolis — alongside their team, including Thadeus Starsiak, Darla Williams, MJ Coyle, Madison Mascare, Austin Aynes and Cory Miller, Laine admits chilling back has been nice, especially as she gets to spend time with her husband, Roger, a lot more.
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"I have been working in my garden. My husband is retired, so I have a playmate 24 hours a day. I'm his favorite person. I don't understand it," she laughs. "It doesn't make any sense to me, but he just loves hanging out with me, and he's my favorite person, but it makes sense with him because he's super nice. And he has a Harley. We go for Harley rides. We get the kayak out and go for floats. We have a boat on Lake Monroe that finally got unwinterized, so we'll start sailing again."
Laine goes on to share how she also loves to travel, and will often see her mom in Florida when she can. "We go camping; we go hiking, we go bike riding. Just hang out in the yard and play with the plants. Do little projects around the house. The stuff I did before but didn't do enough of. Now I've got plenty of time; I can do all I want," she said.
She further shares how the confusion among fans about retiring from the company off-screen equating to retirement from the show has been "sweet," and considers the blurring to be a form of appreciation. "I think of it is as a compliment," she said. "'Oh, we're going to miss you on the show.' I am going to be on the show. It's okay, and so typically, my reaction is thank you, and then set the record straight."
Laine adds that it's not "quite that dry" because people tell her stories all the time of how the show has impacted their own lives, as she and Starsiak-Hawk have meant a lot to fans far and wide. "I get to respond to all these stories. They tell me about what they're fixing up, what they got inspiration from, whatever — I'm always asking people for pictures. I think that is so sweet," she said before sharing how she opened up her own official Instagram page to respond and connect with fans on a personal level. "I answer every message I get on social media, and sometimes they write to me, and I always answer those letters. So, it feels nice that people care and that they're watching. That's job security for me. I like it. And that people get inspired and excited by what they see. That's fantastic. That's cool."
Amid retirement and spending more time with her husband, Laine also shares the show has provided her the opportunity to do things she has always wanted to do. One of those things includes the former lawyer starting up a 501c3 to address homelessness in Indianapolis called Indy Home with a rather controversial concept. "It's called Housing First and the idea is to really address homelessness, you have to give someone a home. If you have barriers to that, like, you require them to give up a pet, or a loved one, or alcohol, or whatever it is, before they have a home, they're going to resist being in a home," she explained. "But if you let someone have a home where they feel secure, and again, Maslow's hierarchy of needs, that first basic need is being met and they can keep that dog, change comes from there."0comments
Laine adds that when one feels secure and gets the reassurance that they have a home, "it makes a difference." Another thing she is looking forward to embracing in retirement is her studies in Divinity school, which she begins at the end of June. "I'm very excited! You would think that a [Juris Doctor] would be enough, but I love school, and I've wanted to preach forever," she said. "And so now that I've retired from the company, I have enough time and I have the funds to go to Divinity school. I'm excited. A lot of exciting stuff in the future!"
Good Bones airs every Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET on HGTV. For more with Laine, stay tuned to PopCulture.com as the beloved matriarch of the home renovation series shares what fans can expect with Season 5 and what she thinks of fans criticizing her daughter, Mina Starsiak-Hawk's "sass." For the latest and freshest news in popular culture, follow us on Twitter @PopCulture for the latest!