Onward and upward!

Thank you for being part of our journey these 3 years! We've so appreciated all your kind words and visits. Onward and upward with our journey!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

7 Seeds to Celebrate

Dear My Toy Garden Friends,
It really is what childbirth is like I image. Being an adoptive mom, I can't know for sure but I suspect birthing a toy store has it's parallels to this life experience. The clock was zooming forward, my pillow was a stranger, Pizza King was by new best friend and I had a laser focus on one day...opening day of My Toy Garden! A year ago, I was challenged by pregnant shelves stacked with unopened boxes of toys. A new Mac computer with new Lion software that didn't want to play nice with my new Point of Sale software. It took us 4 days to figure out why my keyboard kept flipping into Japanese mode. There was soooo much to be done before clicking on the Open sign for the first time and delivering this miracle for everyone to enjoy.
We're turning one and it's time to celebrate!! Here are my thoughts on a few seeds that have been planted this year and dreams that will grow from them.
  1. Be Determined - My mantra said daily on the edge of my bed each morning for at least a year before My Toy Garden came to be was Dream, Decide, Do. Three powerful little words. Try them repeated over and over and see what adventures they lead you to!
  2. Be Consistent - When there are systems in place, all flows much more smoothly. This is true for bedtime routines for children and certainly true at My Toy Garden. Writing these routines down one by one makes it clear for all what is to be done when and how. Confidence grows and hearts are happy. What routine do you need to clarify and be more consistent about at home or at work?
  3. Ask for Help - I've been totally overwhelmed by all the help I've received this year!!! Thank you to all who have volunteered to help with windows, filled in so I could step way when needed, helped with wrapping, worked special events. I adore you! We tend to think we can do it all ourselves. That's not true. We are human and need help. Ask and you'll find yourself surrounded in love.
  4. Have a Budget - This has been a major learning curve for me this year. I've surprised myself at my skills in this area. Having a budget that is clear about past spending and conservative about future spending is so freeing! It gives you control over small and large financial decisions and peace of mind to your days. Do you have a detailed budget for your household that you update and discuss monthly?
  5. Welcome All - My goal was for all to feel truly welcome at My Toy Garden and I feel that we have accomplished that goal. From moms with extra smelly children who use our Mommy Emergency Kit to the customer who grunts when they arrive and leaves smiling to the special needs child whose Mom now knows they are very welcome with us no matter what. All are welcome. Period.
  6. Celebrate Small Steps - Our tendency is to want more, to make it better. I want to add so many more classes, camps, services but I know that in order to maintain the level of quality products and quality customer service you've come to know, I need to let growth happen slowly. The staff and I celebrate all that we already offer and do well. Celebrate the good things you do! What have you patted yourself on the back for lately?
  7. Take Time for Self - My to do list, like yours, is like a dry sponge shoved in a bucket of water. I commit myself to take 2 days a week and step completely away from the store. I spend quality time with my 2 young children and my husband. I treasure these moments while my chlidren are young. I take a 20 minute nap in the afternoon on my days off. The store seems to survive my absences, thanks to my amazing staff, and I return to the garden renewed each time and ready to make a difference on a new day! Do you take time for yourself on a regular basis?
Thank you so much for making this first year completely amazing! Your kind words, repeat visits, referrals to friends and family make my heart swell and gives me tremendous hope for the future, for us and for our children as we grow and play together. Bless you.
Toylady Janet

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