Happy 2023 from your corner stationery shop! We made it through the first winter holiday season thanks to all your support and encouragement. December was a tiring month and I think I pushed myself too far on the path to burnout. I know next year that I’m going to close the store for a longer period after Christmas to rest and recharge. That’s the thing about doing all of this for the first time- I don’t know what to expect and I’m trying to give myself grace as I keep learning. It feels like constant learning about things like what sold well or what didn’t sell for the holidays, how much to budget for heating and snow removal (when will it ever stop snowing!), and navigating all the changing shipping costs. But I’m deep in the nitty gritty- it’s no longer a vague idea for a store, it is an actual business now.
It’s wild to think Clancy, Napkins, and I have lived in Jefferson for over five months. While we’ve fully settled into living in our own place above the store now, we’re still adjusting to small town living. We’ve both gotten involved with local organizations (Clancy joined the movie theatre board and I helped planned the town’s winter festival). As expected, Napkins has to fend off the paparazzi anywhere he goes. It’s quieter here in the winter and sometimes we have to go out of town to buy kale (what is my life) but in turn, when my wifi is down, it’s fixed within an hour by people I know.
So, what’s going on next? In a couple of weeks I’ll be making my way to NYC for two different stationery shows or “markets.” I’m excited to get to meet some of the Warm Wishes makers in person and visit old friends. And also just have a trip out of town to help reenergize me during these dreary winter months. The store is fully in Valentine’s Day mode. I have a card making event planned with the local library and an upcoming artist workshop from one of the store makers- but more on these once details are finalized! And the store is undergoing a (small) makeover these next months as I make my vision more concrete.
Another stationery store owner told Clancy to help me just make it through January, the slowest time in retail. I survived my first day of no one coming into the store last week. A friend reminded me that five months of constant in-store traffic is also something to celebrate. So here’s to that and to hoping the store doesn’t get buried in the anticipated eight inches of snow later today!