Oct 24, 2006
"At the 18th mile you wonder why in the hell you are doing this and at 26.2 miles it all becomes clear." That was a quote I read on the back of a woman's T-shirt that was running in front of me at the Chicago marathon this past weekend.
Yup, I did it! Well, sort of. If you have been reading my blog, you will know that I went into the race with some injuries. The four weeks prior to the race, I couldn't train due to fierce pain in my arm and my pulled hamstring in my left thigh. So I rested for four weeks in hopes that all would be well on race day.
I flew up my older sister, Louisa (yes, I had to put that she is older - that is what sisters do) from Texas to see me race. She has never attended a marathon before and boy was she in for a surprise. This marathon is great! Almost 40,000 runners, over 1.5 million spectators, and lots of entertainment along the route.
Weeks prior to the race I have been eating lots of fish and chicken and really loading up on carbs. I am not used to all those carbs, all the more reason to start weeks in advance. I was beginning to feel like this race was not meant to be. First, my pain and injuries, then a WEEK early, my "ladies day" started the day prior to the race, cramps and all. Yes, I know this falls under the TMI catagory (too much information), but when I tell a story, I don't leave out the details. Then, the weather turns awful! It started out cold, and only got colder and the wind really picked up about mid race. And the two nights prior, I slept awful with the pain in my arm. You'd think I would have sense enough to say to myself: okay, there is pain, rain, PMS, and not enough training....maybe I should pass on this race.
But, who said I had any sense?
We get up at 4:30 AM and head for the 6AM shuttle that was 20 minutes late. We got to the starting area (Grant Park) and the wind started to really kick in. I had my sister carry my bag of "goodies" for me. It was filled with clothing, knee brace, gloves, hats, sun glasses, you name it. So as race time neared, and still trying to figure out the weather, I kept digging in the bag (and driving my sister nuts) and tried to decide: hat or no hat? gloves or no gloves? jacket or no jacket (I HATE running with a jacket), got my power shots? got my sunglasses? Ipod? earphones? oops, don't forget that extra tampon, now where in the hell do I store that on myself??? Water bottle? where is my other glove? ...it went on and on because when I run 26.2 miles, I want to be as comfortable as possible and have all that I need and not a single ounce more.
I stretch and warm up and pray that I get through this. My sis is snapping photos as if I was trying out for the Olympics. She is so proud, so happy, and so friggin sleepy and cold too.
I say my good-byes and go get into the crowd. I picked a pace of 5 hours. That means that I find the area in which other people think they can finish in about 5 hours as well so that way we all are running about the same pace. I looked behind me and was happy to see that there were two more pace times slower than the one I picked. I met a wonderful British woman who flew here to race her very first race. I welcomed her to America. The National Anthem played and I saw lots of gloved hands go over jacket covered hearts - mine included. It was a really touching moment. There were people from all around the world racing - when we all gather for a common goal - it really does make this world a whole lot smaller - which is comforting.
The horn blasts and we all cheer and ......wait....we didn't all start running just yet. You see, I am so far back in the pack, that it takes almost 20 minutes for my section to even get to the starting line. We all wear electronic chips on our shoes which record our time as we cross the starting and finishing lines and some area in between as well.
Well, I had on my Ipod, and as I crossed the the starting line, I cranked it up and the very first song I put on it, just for this race, was "American Woman." It has a great beat and I love that song. I was in a sea of bobbing heads and thousands, no, millions of spectators crammed on bridges, yelling, waving, cheering as we all passed under the bridge. Spectators were everywhere, making all the runners feel like Olympians.
I was really feeling good. No pain, nothing. I kept my pace a little bit slower than I wanted to, but that was a good thing. In fact, I ran the first 13 miles really, really well. In fact, I didn't even stop to walk or rest until after the 10th mile! I usually stop and walk a minute or two every 5 miles, but I was feeling so good. I remember thinking to myself: "Oh! This is what it feels like to be a real runner!...."
While running those first 13 miles, I put myself right, smack in the middle of the crowd. I wanted to be really "in the moment." You can't even begin to imagine what it felt like to be running side by side with thousands of runners and to look ahead and at the slight incline, get a wonderful view of thousands of runners, in all colors, sizes, shapes....and all of us headed for the same goal: the finish line. I had to look behind me, and when I did, I saw thousands of runners - some with smiles, some already huffing, some looking up at the buildings, some waving to their friends...it was just amazing to be a part of that crowd. For years, I've seen the famous photos of the Chicago marathon and its runners and always wanted to do this, and now, here I am - doing it. I even found myself choking up a bit with the thought.
I can think of no better way to enjoy a city, such as Chicago, then with the views that I and 39,999 other runners had that day. The streets were closed, and we got to see all kinds of neighborhoods, houses, buildings and have the city's finest (the police) wave and cheer us on as they blocked the roads and protected us as we ran.
I am asked often what do I think about or "do" as I run for so long. Well, in this race, I enjoyed reading the backs of the T-shirts of the runners. I liked the one that was in front of me for a few miles. It said in small letters: "If you can read this, then that means I am not last." Then there was shirt that said "If you are running this race, you are not a runner - you are an athlete." Me? An athlete? Never thought of it that way, and it may be stretching the meaning of that word a bit, but I will take it anyway! Then there were the spiritual shirts, religious shirts, the shirts that listed all the marathons its owner participated in. But then there were a couple of shirts that made it hard for me to breath because I got choked up. One shirt, worn by a woman said, "This jersey was worn by my sister. I run in her honor." Then it had her sister's birth/death date on it. Another shirt, worn by a woman, said "I am the first twin. My twin can't run, so I run for us both."
Then there were the spectators with their cheers and posters. A young man held up a poster that said: "Free massages for hot chicks. Everyone else, $5." I couldn't help but wonder if I would have had to pay or not. Then there was a poster from another man that said, "Are you tired? You should be. You have been running through my mind." Yup, the cheesy line is now in print. Another poster held by a woman said, "You can do it!" But what made it funny was that as she held it high, she chanted over and over "You can do it! But I can't do it. You can do it, but I can't do it!" And she chanted this as she jumped up in down in glee over and over.
Of course what is a marathon without a runner who juggles, a man in a cow outfit with utters, a man with a lizard hat, devils, fairies, clowns, "outlaws" in cowboy hats and a group of about 30 who blew whistles (loudly) with every step. Thank God they ran faster than me and I didn't have to listen to those whistles for very long.
About mile 12, I started to feel the all-too familiar pain starting to creep from my left butt cheek, down my thigh. Damn! I slowed down a bit and then stretched. I jogged some more, stretched some more, made sure I fueled up well, and kept going. I wanted to keep running, but my leg, at mile 16, said "ain't gonna happen." So, I had to stop. I stretched and stretched and stretched. I started to jog again, for only about 10 seconds and had to stop. That was it. I was now forced to walk the last 10 miles. I was so mad at myself and really, just pissed to put it bluntly. Well, I stayed mad for about a mile. I was just yelling at myself inside my head. Angry that all my training wasted because of this darn injury - and now I can't even run.
After beating myself up for over a mile, I finally told myself that I can stay mad for the last 10 miles, or I can just accept it and enjoy the fun all around me. I decided to enjoy the fun - and I also decided to power walk those 10 miles. So, what did I think about during those last 10 miles? The last marathon I did, last March (which was the very first marathon I ever did), I did a lot of thinking about my life, its turns, and what I went through in the previous months. This marathon, I thought of others. Not myself. I thought about my sister who was cold and waiting and waiting for me. I thought about my boyfriend, who is starting a new job and wondered how he was doing and really wishing he could be here to cheer me on. I thought about my new nephew, due in December and what he was going to be like. I thought about how today is Freddy's 50th birthday and I need to call him. I thought about my friend Debbie, and her 50th birthday coming up. I thought about my boyfriend's brother-inlaw who just found out the day before the race that he has cancer. In fact, I thought about him the most and how I wanted to finish the race just for him. I thought about all of my friends back in St. Louis, and how much they mean to me. I thought about all of you and how would I describe my day to you in this blog and if you would even care to read all the mundane details. I also just simply took in the beauty of the city, its people, and just being a part of such a great race. Oh, yeah, and I did do a lot of thinking about how friggin cold I was!!
Well, I had 800 meters left, and I wasn't about to walk across the finish line...so I began to jog again - with great pain, but I didn't care. I turned down my Ipod so I could hear the crowd and the announcers. I rounded the corner and I could see the finish line banner - never in my life did I ever love a banner so much. As I made my way down those last meters, I glanced around for my sister. I didn't see her, but then I heard "Go Bitsey! Go Bitsey!!" (That was my childhood nickname) and I looked up and she was cheering as if I was from Kenya and about to break a world record. I wouldn't say I set I record.
I finished at 6:31. A little more than an hour longer than my first marathon. I wasn't too thrilled with that. But, then again, I had to remind myself that I just completed 26.2 friggin miles in cold, the wind, and with a very painful leg. Not too shabby. Besides....there's always next year!
Louisa snapped photos and I waved and grinned so happily. I got my medal, my "warming blanket" and my chip off my shoe. I met Louisa at the tall chain-link fence and the first thing out of my mouth: "Is there any food in that bag?" She handed me a giant, and I mean giant cookie that I ate in about 3 minutes and asked for more food. We got a cab and went straight for the hotel. I jumped into a hot shower, gave my sister some BenGay and asked her to rub it in my left butt (what are sisters for if you can't ask them to rub BenGay into your sore butt???), I got under the covers, to try to get the chill out of me and then grabbed the "warming blanket" and used that to help me warm up. The photo below sort of says it all. I was out.
I woke up about 7PM, we ordered Chicago style pizza, watched the Cardinals, talked to my boyfriend on the phone, and I was out again.....I was out....I was happy....I was warm....I was full of pizza.....and I was an "athlete."
Thank you for your well wishes. They mean so much to me.
from my house to your house,
Oct 15, 2006
Chicago Marathon Update....will I race?
I have had several emails lately asking me about my progress with my training for the Chicago marathon this coming weekend, October 22nd. I appreciate it so much that you are even interested!
If you have read my blog, you will know that I did my very first marathon last March in NYC. It was so very hard, but I am crazy enough to try it again!
I have been training and eating right, but the last four weeks or so have been a real challenge. I have been living with severe pain in my left arm, hand and my left butt cheek down the back of my thigh. At first, I thought I just pulled a muscle in my thigh, but the pain is not going away with stretching and rest. My left arm and hand, I am afraid may be more serious.
In 2001 I had neck and spine surgery due to the pain in my left arm and hand. Basically a bone chip was cut from me and fused into my neck to allow the spinal fluid to flow as it should, thus relieving the pinched nerve. I had to wear a neck brace for five months. No driving! I had to sleep sitting up. It was terrible. Really terrible!
Now, about a month or so ago, the pain returns. Some nights it is so fierce that I just can't take it. I get an average of 2-3 hours a sleep a night for weeks now. (That is reason, if you look, you see several of my posting published in the wee hours of the night - I can't sleep due to the pain.) I went to the doctor last week, and she gave me a splint for my arm and some meds. Monday I go for an MRI and bone scan later this month. At the end of October I go and see a neurosurgeon.
Obviously, I am frustated, as I wanted to improve my race time. I wanted to feel good and healthy. I have ran only an average of 4 - 6 miles a few times a week the last several weeks. Not good training. I did manage to get in a 10 mile run right before the pain really set in. So what does this mean?
Well, I need to go to Chicago on business anyway. I have hotel room anyway. And I really, really want to "run" this race. So, I am going to do it. I may not finish it, or I may have to walk it, but I want to be a part of the crowd. I worked for this. I want to be inspired by all the women who are older than I and be amazed at their strength, their health, their speed, and their passion. Like everyone else, I look for and need, inspiration too.
So, just in case you are interested, my bib number is 19335. I will be starting with the group that paces about 10 minutes a mile....much slower than I want to start, but at this point, I just need to take it slow. If you log on to the
www.chicagomarathon.com I believe, I am told, that there is a way to track runners as they cross check points. I would love it if any of you are going to be in town and want to cheer on a "crickety old woman" (inside joke with my honey) and see if she can run across the finish line or not.
If this turns out not to be the race I hoped for - then there is always the St. Louis marathon or the NYC marathon. Yes, I am nutty enough to train, yet again, for another race. Why? Oh, I don't know. Maybe I just like the idea that at age 42 that I can even walk 26.2 miles, much less run it. Maybe I like pushing my body to its limit. Maybe I just need something in my life that has nothing to do with my business - something I do just for me. No one else. Just me.
Or maybe I just don't have the good sense to spend the little free time I have to take well-needed nap.
I have never been one to nap though.
Thank you again for asking. Your well wishes are appreciated and I will give you a post race posting to let you know what happens. And yes, I will let you know what the MRI says as well. And as I cross the finish line, I can tell you this: I will be thanking God for my health, I will be grateful for all that I have, I will feel blessed to have so many well-wishers and I will be needing a really good massage. :-)
from my house to your house,
Oct 13, 2006
Shop Talk Volume 5 - Designing your displays...
Welcome to another posting of my series of "business of boutiques." This posting is for those of you who own a boutique, want to own one, or are in the dream stage of owning one. In previous postings, I covered the importance of location, your company name, the atmosphere of your boutique, and the passion it takes to be in this business.
There is nothing I enjoy more than to walk into someone's beloved boutique and just be "wowed" by the creativity of the owner's displays! Don't you just love it when you enter a store that makes you stop in your tracks and you think to yourself, "I don't know where to start...there is so much to take in!!" I LOVE finding uncommon ways to display common products.
First, the practical side of things: when designing your display keep in mind a few practical hints that will save you and your customers headaches:
Keep the aisle wide enough for two people to pass each other
Keep extra merchandise available for purchase so the customer doesn't feel like she is going to "mess up the display" by removing part of it
Make sure all pricing is visible without needing to move or rearrange the products to find the price. That will discourage buyers from buying
Make sure your display is safe - no teetering objects, breakables away from edges of tables or high enough away from curious little hands, and tall objects secured so when bumped, they won't topple.
Now for the creative side of displays:
Always display in bulk or mass - never "sprinkle" your objects around the store. For instance, I have a wonderful fine wire plant stand near my counter that houses all of my bun candles in a mass pile. I would never take these candles and put some here and then add some there, and also near the door. It loses impact. A big glass urn filled with antique keys will intrique a customer much more than a single key hanging off a knob of a dresser - who hasn't seen that done a million times before? Or big blocks of French soaps piled in antique tin milk pails all lined up on a drugstore counter case makes a statement - a few soaps in a dish or a few in a basket does not.
Don't be too frugal with "display only" items. I do spend some money on items that are for my display only. Piles of old, stained books, broken lamp frames, lots of skrim or materials, moss, hops, pine cones, rocks...you name it. And just when I am sure that no one in their right mind would ever want that broken off arm of an antique doll that I stuck in between the pillow case diplay, I will get a call from my employee telling me a customer wants to know how much is that broken arm? I even had a customer who wanted to buy a waded up piece of paper that I balled into the size of a softball, wrapped some old string around it and stuck it somewhere in the store! Really!
Also, stack things! Put that wonderful little chair on TOP of the table - not next to it. Then pile old books on the chair or hang a wonderful linen table cloth from the back of it. Put smaller tables on top of larger ones. I even put iron beds on top of a large bin I have in the center of my store and filled it with dried roses.
Think in themes - not just seasons. I always have a theme in my store, which is not really apparent to most people, but it helps me when I am designing. This last spring I photo copied beautiful butterflies, dragon flies, and catapillars by the 100's and cut them out one by one. Yes, a little nutty, but I got to finally sit and watch some great movies while I cut them all out. Then I hung them everywhere in the store. They were pinned to cheese cloth, taped all over my huge chandeliers, stuck in frames, under glass jars...I mean everywhere! People loved them and thought it was my "spring" look. Actually, it was a very personal thing for me.
As most of you know, I am newly divorced, and after 22 years of married life coming to end, I felt "dead" inside for a time after it all happened. About this time, a customer confided in me that she felt I was living the life she felt she could have, but never did. She felt it was too late for her. I told her that there are bascially two kinds of humans in the world. Some of us are content and comfortable in our "cocoon" and never venture out and that is okay. And there are those of us that, after some growth, we find our "cocoon" too tight and it doesn't fit as well so we begin to struggle and break out of it. And during this process, as we venture out, we become frightened and afraid of failure. We hang on to our branch, afraid to fly from it....but we now see so much that we never saw from inside our own little cocoon! But, with time, even the branch doesn't feel right and so we spread our wings and fly from it.
We may flounder a bit and not have a clear direction at first. But soon, we find ourselves flying and experiencing so many things that we never would have discovered if we never left our cocoon. That cocoon is called our comfort zone. And having my marriage end so abruptly, I was forced out of my cocoon and then I hung onto that branch for dear life. But last spring, I decided it was time for me to fly again. And so you see, all those butterflies in my store are "pretty and fun" for my customers, but for me, when I enter my store and see them, it is a private reminder of all the wonderful things I have yet to see but will. I am still floundering a bit, but that is okay too.
I didn't mean to go off on a tangent, but my point is this: when designing a display, think beyond what sells and how to sell it. Of course, that is important. But make it a personal reflection of YOU. And even if no one ever "gets it" it doesn't matter. It is something that came from you and you are sharing it with others.
One final note about creative displays: think of color, texture, and like items. Look at the photo above. That arrangement is on my dining room table. The colors are tone on tone. The textures are cloth, wood, china, and dried flowers. It is quirky with the tiny chairs which keep the formality of my 17th century Dutch bowl from being stuffy. It is a simple, simple display that I am looking at right now as I type this, and I enjoy looking at it. And my theory is...if I enjoy looking at it, then others will too. And to those who don't "get it" I say: you don't have to.
Enjoy your space, use it freely, and let it whisper, not scream, your vision. You whisper your vision and then let your customers scream in delight. Now that will put a smile on your face. I promise.
from my house to your house,
Oct 4, 2006
Elizabeth House gets another citation from the City of Maplewood again...
Well, this will be a short posting as I am at the end of my rope. I just wish there was a noose at the end sometimes. I opened my mail today and what do I see? I wonderful love letter from our endearing city inspector saying that he "inspeceted" my location and I was in violation of the city ordinance on portable signs and I have 30 days to correct it.
See the photo at the top? It does me no good having my sign right there on my front porch area because people walking down the sidewalk can't see it until they turn the "bend." But should they actually find my store, it is nice to let them know that I am open for business.
If you have been reading my blog, you know that I am hiring new employees and one new employee put the sign way out on the sidewalk (where it can be seen) instead of next to my front door. I didn't make it clear that it was to be right by the door, and she, being new, had enough sense to realize that the sign does no good at the front door and placed it where it would actually be visible. I am out most of the day on appointments and did not know this happened. The inspector writes me up again instead of just coming in and checking to see if there was a problem. I am not sure if I go to court again or not - or pay a fine - or what. According to the last time I was in court, the judge said he would revoke my business license should he see me in court ever again over this issue. No license means no doing business in Maplewood.
Maybe this is a "sign" for me to move? Is there a quaint, but high foot-traffic town out there that would welcome a small boutique? I may be shopping around.
Apparently, City Hall doesn't even know its own Mayor's email address. Prior to my post regarding this issue, I called city hall myself to get the Mayor's email address so you readers, if you felt like it, could email him your opinion. Apparently your emails have not gone through at all.
Here is another email address so please try this one if you feel like telling the Mayor how you feel:
To get the complete story, please view my posting titled "Signage." And no, I haven't heard a peep from my alderman or the mayor, or the chamber of commerce since I last left them all messages or spoke with them about this issue last August. All of whom told me on the phone: "I will look into it and make some calls and call you back." No calls yet.
I appreciate your support, concern, and outrage. I am just fed up. Period.
from my house to your house,
Oct 3, 2006
Shop Talk Volume 4
A boutique's atmosphere is more important than you might think.
So many times I hear my customers walk in and say "oh, it smells so good in here!" Or they ask me what is that music I am playing. Or they walk right up to the burning candle and want to know what am I burning. Or they pick up the huge block of French soap.
Welcome to Volume 4 of my "business of boutiques" series. Today, I want to spend a moment to talk about what impression your boutique gives your customers. Ask yourself this question: What is the one thing I want my customers to think or do after they leave my store? Besides telling all of their friends, you want them to remember you and your store when it comes time to buy that special gift. And research has shown that the sense of smell is the strongest sense out of all five senses. A smell can revive a long lost memory quicker than a photo, a sound, or a touch.
A wonderful scent is so needed! However, you have to be careful about allergies or overpowering the store with a scent, or too many different scents. I sell wonderful lavender soaps and when they first come in, they are so strong! I put them near the door so customers smell them immediately, but as they make their way towards the back of the store, the scent fades and doesn't overpower them. Also, take note of the type of scent you provide. Does it go with the mood of your store? If your boutique sells clean, modern glass and metal vases and lamps, then a baby powder scent just won't go with the store's atmosphere.
Besides having a great scent, lovely music is wonderful too. I have to say, I just can't stand going into a little store and there is no music playing. Even worse, if there is a TV on and the volume is up. Music can be soothing, or exciting, or upbeat. Your boutique will dictate what type of music that will go with your products. I happen to talk a lot with my customers (no surprise there) and I find instrumental music best. I don't want to compete with Celine Dion - she would win every time against my Texas accent and fast rate of speech. Not a great combination. I want my customers to feel like they can linger, visit, smell the candles and soaps and listen to calming music. Because once they leave my store, it is so hetic in the "real world."
Great displays are necessary. I will have a shop talk volume on merchandising next time. For now, make sure your store allows for a stroller. That boxes and inventory are put away. (Okay, as I speak, I have a box right in front of the store holding a beautiful bronze and crystal chandelier that I have yet to hang up....I am hoping that my wonderful scents and soothing music will help my customers overlook that big ugly box - not likely, but worth a try.)
I take as much product out of packaging (unless the packaging is just fabulous) and let my customers touch and feel. I try to avoid plastic at all costs. Women are touchers. Have you ever watched a woman go shoe shopping? Think about it. We stop, look, touch, pick up and feel the shoe -the outside of the shoe. Not until we are satisfied with what we feel, do we ask for a shoe in our size to try on. Really, that is what we do. Never mind that once we actually buy the shoe and wear it, we no longer feel it, we just put it on and go. We don't reach down during the day and touch the outside of our shoe, now do we? But we sure did when we were deciding to buy it or not. Think about that when putting your store together. What can your customers touch?
I hope this volume helps you to really think about your store and what impression your customers walk away with when they leave it. Take time to make your boutique one that people will not only talk about, but will actually bring in their friends because "they just have to visit it!!" What a wonderful compliment.
from my house to your house,
Oct 1, 2006
I am always amazed, but flattered when someone will email me or a customer will ask me: "What is a typical day for you?" First, I am amazed that anyone would even care. But I am flattered because apparently I give off the appearance of having a day that some of my customers would find interesting. So, I decided I would try to describe a day in the life of Elizabeth. There is no such thing, and I really mean, no such thing as a "typical day." The photos in this posting shows the "real me." Not that I am never "not real" but sometimes people think I live an elegant life filled with shopping, hopping around Europe and posing for the next photo shoot for the next magazine I am fortunate enough to be in. Not that those things don't happen, but they make up about 2% of my normal activities.
I live above my store and I try not to bring work up there, but as you can see by the photo of me sketching out bedding, I am in my apartment. Oh, by the way, that photo was taken about 2AM. But basically a day in my life could easily go this way:
Wake up after about four hours of sleep and go for a run - maybe 6 miles if I have time.
I then jump in the shower and plan my day in my head.
The phone rings while in the shower, I do not answer it
I usually eat eggs and bacon for breakfast while I answer email and listen to my messages.
I run down to the store, before it opens and write out notes for my employee and things for her to take care of.
I am off to my first appointment of the day - 9:00 AM for a paint consult for a commercial building lobby.
I get three more phone calls on the way to my appointment from clients, seamstress, upholster.
After my consult, I run over to the fabric store and pick up sample and shop.
I then get a call from a magazine editor wanting to know if I have any photos of chairs she can use "of course!" I fire back, not knowing if I have what she needs.
I then call my employee and ask her to hunt for said photo. While on the phone with her she tells me that Client A needs to reschedule and so must juggle my appointments.
I get gas, my drycleaning, go to the bank, and Office Depot - it is now only noon.
I call my employee on the way back to the store and ask her to mapquest directions to my hotel in Chicago, since I will be leaving the next day, it would be nice to know how to get there.
I get back, jump into my paint clothes, paint some samples and while the first coat dries, I answer phone calls, type up a bid for slip covers, and call the vendor to find out where are my candles.
I start to paint the second coat, but my employee calls me and reminds me that the newspaper ad is due today and what doI want to adverstise?
I stop what I am doing and go upstairs to the store and help her work on the ad. Answer two more calls on the way.
Two clients come in the store and "catch " me there. We chat and visit and go over some design issues and then I schedule an appointment with them.
It is now 4PM and I must change into clean clothes, pack up my car with props because I am to speak at the St. Louis Culinary Arts Society on table top design.
As I rush out of the store, my employee stops me and says she can't find a chair photo for the editor. I stop what I am doing and go to the computer and hunt down a couple of photos and ask my employee to download them , email them to the editor for me.
On the way to my table top design presentation I answer three more calls.
I unload my car, set up the tables and hand out flyers with tips on table top design. I demonstrate my paper theme and speak for an hour, answer questions, network, and then find out that someone was there to do a story on my designs for the paper. Very flattering!
It is now 9PM and I am loading up the car and heading back to the store.
I unload the car, grab my briefcase and head up to the apartment to work on bids and to design more bedding.
I get a call from my sweetie at 11 PM and we talk for an hour - I am happy for the break.
I go back to work, working with fabrics, designing and make a list of all the things I didn't do that day that I need to get done tomorrow.
I go to bed about 3AM and a new day waits for me only 5 hours away! This time in Chicago.
And yes, I do sleep. Really.
Thank you for taking interest in my daily activities. I have no doubt that you business owners fill up your days and nights just as well. It is part of being a business owner. Not easy, but I love it.
from my house to your house,