Saturday, October 31, 2009

Trick or treat... give me something good to eat!

So, I think one of the things I love about trick or treating with the kids - is that they don't like to do it for very long. After about a half hour, they would rather go back to my aunts house, and pass out the candy to other kids. I love hearing my son greet them, and then compliment them on their costumes! And my daughter who's too shy to really hand it out, hangs behind him and echos his words. Really, it's too cute.

Of course, they are really great about sacrificing all their Peanut Butter cups for Mom. It's too funny, if they have one - they give it to me - then I tell them no, they should keep it but they insist. How can I break their hearts and turn them down? Far be it for me to do that! So, I ingest a few, four, five -- okay, maybe six of them. Good stuff.

Here I present to you the "I'm just a girl" kids, Halloween style. We have the handsome Heavyweight Champion of the World; and the prettiest little Rainy Day Duck I've ever seen. (If I do say so myself... though I might be just a teensy bit biased.)

Happy Halloween!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Friday's final thoughts....

*She sighs as she rests her tired toesies on the sofa*

Yes. I wore heels again today. I know, I know....I'm a glutton for punishment.

So it's Friday, and it's Halloween weekend -- and I've got a swirl of thoughts going around in my head and I figure I might as well set them free. Let's get started, shall we...?

1. Who doesn't love Halloween? Seriously. It's so much fun, even if you don't get dressed up it's a blast watching all the kids in their creative costumes. Today at the store - I blew threw 1800 pieces of candy to all the kids who came in to trick or treat at the local businesses and I was blown away by the creativity of some costumes. Loved them.

2. My daughter's costume however - is the most creative of all. I've come to realize just how artistic my little Princess Petunia is these days. Both of my kids are very imaginative and creative - both very artistic -- but she can make something out of nothing. She'll take a juice box that's empty and poke pencils in it, hang things from it - and come up with a brand new creation. So this year, she came up with her own costume idea: A rainy day. (I'd prefer sunshower, but she ixnayed Mommy's idea...). It's her favorite yellow rain slicker with a duck head for a hood, her yellow umbrella with light blue strands of plastic hanging from it to look like rain -- and slickers. Seriously, how cute and out of the box?!?! Love her...

3. Two weeks into the store and it's abundantly clear that staff needs to be rotated. Some, while maybe wine savvy just aren't cut out for retail. At least not fast paced retail.... and if anyone knows G, then they know he's a bull in a china shop on speed. He's got NO patience for anyone not working at his level, and while I'm high speed low drag myself, I've got a little more patience in that arena than he does. So, I've got to rework the scheduling a bit to see how we can't get more snazziness on weekends than we do at the moment. Love everyone there, but the speed isn't quite there... Ahhh, but such is the life in retail.

4. I'm convinced I won't be able to recharge any time soon. Running, yoga, massages, retail therapy...any or all of the above are more than likely a vision in the not so near future. But that's okay, after the holidays it will be appreciated and valued that much more because I'll really, really, really enjoy it....

Really.... !

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

I never thought I'd utter these words....

I just can't wear heels to work on a regular basis anymore.

It must be because I'm on hardwood floor all day long - but let me tell you - my toesies were killing me today! I've always worn heels -- always! And while it wasn't a huge delivery day today, I figured I'd break out my fun boots and not be dressed like I'm taking in deliveries, you know what I mean?

Big mistake. Huge!
(Little "Pretty Woman" reference for you, btw. One of my fave scenes in the movie...)

They're still hurting me.
I think I may have to change to Madden Girl boots -- if I can find a pretty pair that isn't too clunky looking. His heels, no matter how high - are the most comfortable shoes ever. And I'm sorry, but this girl can not give up the heels.

Refuses to.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Postscript to "overheard at the checkout counter..."

So, today I discovered my thoughts regarding the checkout dilemma were shared on one of my very favorite blogs to read - Universal Hub. (Great site, if you love to read whats going on in Boston from different bloggers perspectives - as well as news items, check it out if you don't already!)

I don't typically respond when a person comments - but this one sort of irked me a bit.
The commenter went as follows:

"More to the point...
By anon (not verified) Tue, 10/27/2009 - 1:16pm
...why is this blog even here? I thought Universal Hub was about important/amusing things that happen in and around the city, not the inane, outdated rantings of a bridge-and-tunnel Mom. I mean, really, worried about what junior's going to think when he sees Cosmo in the checkout line?

Unless... unless Adam's making a sly comment about the overall inanity of the burbs. That's it, isn't it? We're onto you."

(Well, Anon - aren't you the witty one. Not even using your name? Seriously now.)

Like I said, I don't typically let posts that are critical bother me. But, this one got under my skin. Maybe it's the Mother Hen in me protecting my young? (Or is it the pitbull in me that's covered in lipstick? Pick your analogy, I'm not fussy.)

Hence my response:
More to the point -- and for the record
By Rebecca (not verified) Tue, 10/27/2009 - 6:12pm
Just to clarify - I couldn't be any further from being a 'burban "bridge & tunnel mom". I'm an entreprenuer, multiple business owning city girl, owning two liquor stores (Not exactly a prudish business....) in both Boston proper AND a city North of Boston.

That being said, I'm not concerned about "junior seeing Cosmo" but was more expressing curiousity about why Cosmo is mixed in with Martha Stewart and Cooking mags in the checkout aisle, unlike other magazines that are grouped together. It's not about him seeing the magazine per se, it's more about my having to explain to him at an age far too young for me to have to explain about pleasuring a partner 12 ways to Tuesday in the bedroom.

Let's be honest -- a beautiful woman half naked on a cover with the words SEX in bold letters is far more appealing to young eyes than anything the Star, Enquirer or World could ever put on the cover. Is it damaging to the kids? No, of course not. But as a parent it's difficult to discuss such a big subject to such a tender age.

Clearly, you aren't a parent. Burb or otherwise....."

Hmmmph. Take that.

(she says flipping her non-suburban city chick hair while sipping a glass of wine.)

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Overheard at the checkout counter....

So, as promised - the following is the story that really made me think about how supermarkets need to remerchandise their magazines.

My son and daughter were with me at the market while I was shopping - and as I'm loading up the register area (you know, that scrolling black thing that pushes your food up to the scanner -- what's that called??) my son says to me "Mom, look at this..." in that "I see something I know I'm not supposed to see" kind of way.

So me, being very blase about it all says: "Oh, right - Cosmo - that's a woman's fashion magazine. You know, perfume ads - clothing ads, advice on what "not" to wear".
T: Fashion, huh? No it's's about sex.
Me: No, of course not! It's a Fashion magazine, truly...
T: Um, okay so then why is there an article about "12 ways to please your man"?
Me: Well, grown men like their women in pretty dresses! (feeling pretty proud of the quick response, might I add - but knowing he's so not buying it.)
T: Okay, well what about "the sexy (stressing the word "sexy" ) ass workout?
Me: Don't say that word!! (*thinking of a good answer...coming up with nothing....* )
T: Why does a person's butt (again, stressing butt) have to be sexy?!? That's disgusting! See, I told you it's about S-E-X.
Me: (Thankful that he loves pretty girls but still loving that he thinks that they're kind of disgusting at the same time --and at the same time defeated because he won. It's clearly about sex.) "Honey, honestly - that magazine shouldn't be here - I think someone filed it incorrectly -- it's about fashion, but there's dating advice too, you know? Just let it go, it's a grown up magazine..."

Seriously though -- why Cosmo is at the counter for impressionable 8 year olds to read -- is beyond me.

Anyone have any insight into this? Anyone....?

Cream coloured ponies and crisp apple strudel, Door bells and sleigh bells and schnitzel with noodles...

Key Lime Tea Cookies. "To Die For" dips - any variety. A very good and emollient hand cream, just lightly scented. Really good chinese food, like the kind I grew up on. Cinnamon Toast scented candles. A fabulously delicious Zinfandel, say "Sin Zin". The feeling of my floors when they've just been washed. The smell of my daughter's hair after a day outdoors. Seeing, touching, feeling when I shop. A perfectly made Spicy Tuna roll. Feeling proud and accomplished. Anything pumpkin. A dinner made by anyone else but me - for me. Watching home videos of my children. Spending time with my friends who are working with me. Missing yoga and running, but knowing I'll get back to it. A strong, deep tissue massage. Living life, laughing and loving every moment of it -- the good, the bad and everything in between.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Fridays Final Thoughts...

1. I've been so involved in business -- I've not been able to watch any sports! Well, I saw part of the Pats game, but seriously - since the Sox loss, I've yet to watch tv or listen to sports radio. Thank goodness for my Twitteratzi friends, otherwise I'd never know what was going on!! But even with them, I know what's going on in current sporting news -- not so much the baseball back office kind of "stuff". (Code for: what's the skinny on the Captain for next year?)

2. Tonight was our first Friday night - with minimal advertising. I have one word: wow. I don't know if it's because it's new - if it's because this was previously a dry town, or if this is going to be the norm, but we're doing numbers that resemble our Boston store. Insane.....

3. Did I mention we've got a ribbon cutting ceremony? Yup. Tuesday, we will have a photo op that will forever be chronicled within the history of the community. I am finding it hard to believe that me -- a girl from the ghetto on the North Shore (if you know me in real life - you know where we're from and totally get the joke! Not truly a ghetto, but still...) and a boy from the "Ville are responsible for this. See what a little ambition and elbow grease can get you...?

4. Busy weekend as always on the agenda - but wow, this is a different kind of busy. Tonight, the kids and I had a Taco Dinner night with my aunt; tomorrow, the kids and I will hang out - and then they have a play date with their cousins while I work for a few hours; then tomorrow night hopefully we'll just snuggle with a movie. Sunday, we have a birthday party for our Grandmother - and hopefully G and I will switch off watching the shop with the staff that day. Truly, Sunday staff is seasoned and capable with retail so I think they'll be okay. But we'll see....

It's been an interesting whirlwind of a week. Once we can get a decent amount of staff on per shift for end of the week - I think life will once again have a semblence of normalcy.

I think.....

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Pretty things....pretty things...everyone loves pretty things....

You know what this girl needs?
A good Sephora visit.
My long, lost happy place.

Actually - the downtown community where I opened the store -- really could benefit from a cute little cosmetic and perfume boutique, ala Beauty Mark. That would make a fortune....

If I was to open a second business, unrelated to what I already do -- that is what I'd do.
How fun would that be?

I'd call it Pretty Things.
(Who doesn't love pretty things?)

This girl is always full of ideas.
One just never knows....

Monday, October 19, 2009

If a picture paints a thousand words....

Be the master of your own destiny. If you do your research, and take risks that are calculated - anything is possible.

Opening day....

Friday, October 16, 2009

Who needs a little sprucing up? And other random thoughts for Friday....

This girl does.

I've so neglected myself. Before our opening in the next few days, I must get a haircut and my nails freshened up so that I don't look like a homeless woman when we open. Pretty haggard I'm looking. Pretty, pretty, pretty haggard. (A little humor for all you "curb your enthusiasm" fans. How great is this season thus far?! Seriously - love that show. But I digress...) Truly, I'm mortified when I see anyone I know out and about these days. I'm so emotionally spent, I may make a total rash decision and cut major length of my hair. Maybe....

So the store is on its way to being completed. I'm a little overwhelmed, I have to admit.

My artisan cheese won't be approved for selling until next week, and truthfully - I'm okay with that. I think that's a huge undertaking and truly I need to ease into it. It might be disappointing for some, but honestly -- I'm so good with it.

Here's a little question for you... why do supermarkets have Cosmopolitan at the checkout counter where 8 year old boys who are bored with shopping with their mothers can read it? Oh, I promise, that conversation is going to be a post very, very soon.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Every day is another day to have a good day....

And unfortunately, while the day before yesterday -- or yesterday -- wasn't one of them -- today is a far better day.

I got some of my Italian specialty items and cured meats and panini rolls -- my pastas and such. As well as the fun cheese mixes, and spreads/salsas and other fabulous goods. What was even better than that - was the reaction I got from two people today when I loaded the frozen pasta. I have pumpkin ravioli which they both expressed that a local specialty shop sells for more than double mine. Love to hear that kind of thing.

Friday, the cheese is coming!! I'm beside myself over that. And of course, the fresh olives and stuffed cherry peppers that I can't wait to display. How to keep myself from snacking all the time is the issue....

Displaying everything is going to be the most challenging aspect - and the most argued thus far -- but it will all come together beautifully. I'm sure of it. My mother in law is an amazingly talented designer and so for her to stage the store with me and some of the people who are helping out and retail oriented -- is really going to be fun.

But in the meantime, onwards and upwards and hopefully in very short order - this stressful time will be behind me. It didn't have to be so stressful, and I wish it wasn't....but hey - it is, what it is.

Time to move on.....

Monday, October 12, 2009

Brought to you today by the letters "F" and "U".

What is:

Stressed, stressed and more stressed.
Angry. Frustrated. Disappointed. Saddened and unfortunately, not surprised.

Drama. Chaos. Tension.
Irritating, irritated, irritable.

What should be:

Stress, stressed and more stressed.
Teamwork. Communication. Respect. Dignified conversation.
No drama. No Chaos. No Tension.

Grown up.

Friday, October 09, 2009

I'm your biggest fan, I'll follow you until you love me....

I am so digging Lady Gaga.
Fabulously artistic, she makes Madonna look like she tried too hard all of these years.

Interestingly enough, she's adorable. At first glance, she's rather Amy Winehouse-ish looking but the truth of the matter is, she's actually quite adorable. When she doesn't have overly dramatic makeup or crazy wigs (or just one or the other), she's really pretty. But I think what I like even more about her is the fact that she doesn't try to let her appearances matter (okay, she does flaunt her body which is fabulous, so maybe she does just a little....) but it's not in that superficial Britney Spears kind of way. It's more in that "I am an artiste" manner, and daring to live outside the box.

I have such respect for talent.
Is she the greatest singer in the world? No, not at all.
But she's different, she's unique -- and while I don't love all of her songs, I do really like her style.

Rock on sistah.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Holy Smokinoli...

It's already Thursday.

Okay, let's see -- it's going to have to be a random thought kinda day.

1. I am psyched for the Sox game.... though truthfully, I don't know how much of it I'll actually get to see tonight; I may have to DVR and play catch-up tomorrow (or catch-er... kidding. The little Jason reference sounded funnier in my head. Clearly.... ) because God knows I'm not going to have time to listen to sports radio or watch NESN tomorrow.

2. Speaking of tomorrow.... it's a 10 year benchmark for me and the Mr. It's amazing how quickly time flies when you're having fun. Kids, houses, businesses.... can't imagine what the next 10 will bring! Hopefully just lots of health and happiness. We have nothing planned - with the store opening, there's really nothing we can do since we're so busy getting it ready. Tomorrow night (if I can get a sitter and truthfully, it's not looking very promising!) is going to be just he and I in the store, stocking. Maybe a glass of champagne while we're at it. Actually, that's not such a terrible way to spend it -- this store is after all, part of our life's venture.

3. I am absolutely loving the buildup and excitement towards our opening; I am however, hating the effect that touching all this cardboard is having on my hands. Must. Get. Gloves.

4. Have I mentioned how much I'm out of everything? Lotions, perfumes and the like. I am so out of touch with my hair as well. I have to make an appointment for a good cut and subtle highlight before the store opens. I really, really, really need a pick me up.


Tuesday, October 06, 2009

We have so much time, and so little to do - strike that! Reverse it.

Okay, so I'm feeling a little overwhelmed.
It's a good thing, but still.... of the 8 components that run this business, I'm responsible for 6 of them. Eventually, it may be all 8 - but for now, even the 6 is enough enough to make anyone's head spin.

I very rarely dream, and even more rarer is it for me to remember them; but while I don't remember my dream per se from last night, I know my teeth were cracking and falling out. (eewww.) According to the dream dictionaries it basically means that it can be representational of subconscience feelings of insecurity about undertakings.

I think if there wasn't such anticipation regarding our opening, it wouldn't matter so much -- but to be the first real wine shop in a previously dry community -- there's definitely anticipation and expectations. I'm sure we'll meet them, it's really just feeling that our processes are ironed out that hangs over my head.

Speaking of expectations... please tell me that wasn't the Captain's last regular season game in uniform this past weekend?!?! I haven't been able to keep up on my sporting news with all of this, but I did see him tip his cap and he received a standing ovation which truly, got me a little faklempt thinking this was it. Say it isn't so!!!

Actually, we were offered playoff tickets right on the first baseline for this weekend and I'm so disappointed we aren't able to take them. We were supposed to have been at Foxboro for this past Sunday's game actually - but as a result of the timing of the opening... no such anniversary soiree is happening. That's okay... it's a small time in life to sacrifice.

So that's where my head is at today. We're potentially two weeks out from opening, and there's so much to do to get ready yet we are so close.

So close....

Saturday, October 03, 2009

Sparse. sporadic.... Saturday

So, while I'm trying to stay diligent on my blogging - with the new store getting ready for opening, I must admit - it's going to be difficult. But I will try to not miss more than a day or so; partly because it's a therapeutic and fun thing for me -- and I don't have much fun these days (only temporarily, I know...) -- and partly because I really want to share the excitement and tribulations of opening the store.

We received our first wine shipment yesterday -- 80 cases. That's alot to receive in one day. But, that was the largest and they'll get smaller each time until we're full - which is great. I placed my first food order yesterday, and this week I'll be pulling the trigger on the other ones I have lined up so that we can start getting the store merchandised - and most importantly, everything into the register properly. My last food shipment will be the fresh cheese and frozen products; they've got a different shelf life so it's important to do them last, and quite honestly - they're a breeze to merchandise.

I do want to share one tip with everyone -- and to no one's surprise, it's a cleaning tip. I bought some of those Mr Clean Magic Erasers; I'd seen them but figured - seriously, what can that do that I can't with a little Fantastic and a nice cloth? Let me tell you -- it's awesome. I went over my walls with it this morning and I was most definitely impressed at how it cleaned without ruining the finish, and with such little effort. When you have tan hallways and little hands in your house, you'd be amazed at how dirty the walls get -- and I was equally amazed at how easily it cleaned and almost made the paint look brighter! Love them - and if you haven't tried them yet yourself, I highly recommend that you do.

So that is my personal endorsement for this rainy and yet very comfortable Saturday afternoon. Our soccer game was cancelled (clearly!) and we have a birthday party to attend today, but it was a last minute invite and truly - this girl doesn't feel up to going to a party at the moment, but who knows - maybe that will change.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Life is but a dream....

I'm going to give a peek at the new store.

I'd been toying with doing a blog, and showing the progression - but I've been trying to keep an element of surprise to the whole effort.

The windows have been covered up - and will stay that way, until the weekend prior to opening.

You see, we're going to be the first liquor store to open in a previously dry community; there's another store that is going up as well - but they're 3 miles or so down the road from us and not anywhere near the center, so we are truly in the heart of it all. And so I'm hesitant to let too much of the cat out of the bag, however....

I can't resist since Nichole asked.

It's just a tease; the store's not finished -- and there's still much more to do, but at least the guts are in.

The next time I show photos -- it will be stunning.
Truly stunning.
And I will show before, during and after photos to really capture the progression.

(And Nichole, now you have to come in and visit us next time!)