Thursday, July 16, 2009

Photos from The Whatever Shop, aka Shop 2 and a heartfelt confession

The second baby never gets as many photographs taken. I made sure to go around tonight and snap some pics at The Whatever Shop, after plumping up some displays getting ready for the weekend.

Fear not, that is just the Christmas room. I don't really put out Christmas in the main part of the shop this early. The Christmas room is surprisingly popular, though. It helps that we're just 1.5 hours south of Bronner's, though, and many Michiganders are used to the idea of year-round Christmas!

Important notice: Frivolities shop hours are officially 'by chance' until the end of August. What does that mean? It means that I can't promise regular to-the-minute hours (*snort* when could I ever?!), so have put this up instead of an hours sign. Mind you, the hours are *generally* noon-6 Tuesday-Saturday. I am open more often than I am not. If you are coming from afar, I recommend calling the shop to check on hours that day. The number is (734) 424.4438. The Whatever Shop is open Thursday-Saturday noonish-6. Closed on July 23rd.

I am working on a huge, life-altering project right now. It's terrific, but it is taking a lot of time and I have to accomodate other people's schedules who are involved in it, so I can't promise set hours. Besides, it's summer. Not exactly hot-hot-hot shopping time. My hours have been kerflooey ever since my dad died--really, pretty much the past three years, ever since he got sick--and I have been dealing with that. I love my shops more than ever, the spirit is always willing, but sometimes the body is not cooperating. I have gotten to the point where I am publicly acknowledging that I am not going to make myself sick to be open on a day if I physically cannot do it. I'm not a big old chain or a massive personality-less outfit. It's a personal, homegrown, family-owned shop. (Both of them. I know there are two, but it is basically one shop in two places.) I often make the mistake of working too intensely one day (decorating until 3am...) and then paying for it the next. I have had a lot of days where the ole bod says STOP IT AND LET ME REST. I have learned to listen to it. I ignore it in December, but in the summer? I'm all ears.

I didn't mean to turn this into a personal explanation, but maybe that's good. I have been very affected by my dad's death...sometimes it just hits me in the face and knocks me down. It got to me so much I ended an entire CAREER I had been looking forward to starting. (real estate) I had a lifelong interest in real estate and was making it a reality last year, got my license, was working for a brokerage, was gung-ho, all set to be a "top producer" and looking forward to closing my first million in sales someday, all while running two chic boutiques. I have a stack of letters I was writing to FSBO's (for sale by owners) to try to get their listings back on September 30, 2008. My dad had his mortal injury on October 1st. Those letters were never mailed. I never got back into it. I completely lost that part of me.

Decorating is in my very soul, so I never lost it for the shops. If anything, I have felt more inspired, more creative, more into it than ever. But the emotional fatigue kicks me in the ass somedays and that is that. I have also realized my shop's importance in the know, it's not that big a deal. And here I, the mother of that shop, am saying that. So it was closed one day. So what. It will be open again. No one needs anything I am selling. Of course it's fun to look in shops. Of course it's disappointing if a shop you want to browse in is closed when you happen to be out. But there is a reason why. My real, true customers understand and have been supportive. The others? Ah, I'm such a sweet old-fashioned girl, I won't write the things that pop into my head. *smile*

It reminds me of this one chick a couple of years ago who gave me a tongue-lashing for being closed one day. I think it was 15 minutes after that that the police officer I had called through 911 was opening up her bag to reveal over $200 of merchandise she'd been stuffing in there. LOL! I guess she had planned her heist earlier and I had "ruined" her plans by daring to be closed. Ooh.

Like dear Aunt Eliza says, "Empty vessels make the most noise!" Isn't that the truth!

Well, that was rather fun to write. And all I expected to do tonight was post some pics! I should write more of my deep, dark retail thoughts. I've got a few. Stay tuned. ;)


Robin said...

I did not know you had a blog {I know you were working on something} until you mentioned pictures on FB! The second shop looks beautiful!! I see some things I'd like to buy. :-D

Great to see you back in the blogging world again too!

Carolyn said...

Hi - there are several things I saw in your pics that I would be interested in seeing - where are you located and what are your hours?
I'm looking forward to meeting another free spirit!

S said...

hey there...i LOVE all the shiny black goodies in the 4th picture. do you have an online site where i can purchase these? my email is labrumwedding @ yahoo dot com. i look forward to your reply. thanks!!!