Saturday, May 27, 2006

nss recap

where do i even begin?

i managed to make it out of the house last friday without a cold.

my flight to new york was delayed 4 hours! it was blamed on weather and the amount of traffic coming into new york. once i was on the plane, the flight was uneventful and we arrived in ny at about 5:30 or so. after a long shuttle ride, i finally made it to the hotel and met up with my friend t from high school who now lives in south carolina. it was wonderful to see her again. we picked right up where we left off last year and started gabbing and laughing non-stop.

saturday was spent setting up the booth. we got there around 8:30 a.m. and i think we left by about 7:30 p.m. or so. it was a long day, but i was happy with how the booth turned out. the moron that i am forgot to take a picture of the final project. i have several picture of "along the way", but none of the final booth. t took a photo with her camera, so we're going to see if she can get it to me. promise to post it if i can get it.

being that it was my fourth year this year, i thought i had an idea of what to expect. traffic patterns of the last three years seemed to be really consistent, so i imagined this year would be the same. i couldn't have been more wrong.

sunday was the first official day of the show....usually my biggest day for sales. by noon this year, i thought i was going to jump off the building. sales were HORRIBLE. traffic was non-existent. i called the hubby at lunch and was ready to break down. this was completely unlike my previous years at the show. i could always count on sunday being a big day.

after returning from lunch things started to pick up. traffic got a lot busier and sales increased. i began to feel a lot better. we heard a lot of ,“we’re just looking today, but we’re going to come back tomorrow to place orders.” this isn’t unusual, but seemed to be happening more this year than most. maybe people were keeping a closer eye on their budget than past years.

monday and tuesday were a lot more of the same. very, very slow in the mornings and busy, busy, busy in the afternoons. this is one of the traffic patterns I mentioned that was completely different this year. typically mornings have been busy and afternoons; dead as a doornail. very interesting change. I’m not sure what the reasoning is for this, but my only suspicion is that it’s related to the floor plan change this year.

wednesday is the last day of the show. in all honesty, over the past three years, sales have been pretty non-existent on wednesdays. i wasn’t expecting much. once again, the traffic boggled my mind! wednesday was a very, very solid day for me. about the same as sunday, which is unheard of for me. i have no solid explanation of why the traffic patterns were so different this year. i was so completely petrified on sunday, but by wednesday, it all seemed to even out.

overall, i was a little shy of my goal at the show, but the way faxes have been coming in since being home, i expect to meet it with no problem. plus i have gotten a bunch of requests for catalogs from people who weren’t able to make it to the show that have already been mailed.

my only real complaint about the show is that they stuck another line that is WAY too similar to mine right across the isle from me. so similar, in fact, that one of my reps (someone who works with my line on a daily basis) said that she nearly entered their booth; mistaking it for mine! i’m obviously going to have a discussion about this with the show managers. (one of which came by my booth and immediately apologized for putting us so close together — blaming it on the internet and saying she had no idea we were so similar) we’ll see what they have to say when i talk with them over the next week or so. other than that, my neighbors were AWESOME this year. we had so much fun and were laughing non-stop. i can’t wait to go back and see them next year.

we did have one really great experience while at the show that is worth mentioning. one of our neighboring booths just happens to live in a penthouse suite on the upper west side, and invited a few of us up for cocktails after the show on tuesday. lucky me! the view was amazing from their wrap around rooftop balcony. plus they offered the use of their penthouse anytime we wanted….all we need to do is pay $60 for the housekeeper to come clean when we’re done! pretty sweet deal! (their primary home is in California, so they’re only in the penthouse two weeks out of every month!) rough life! i just may need to take them up on that sometime!

oh, and i almost forgot to mention all the wonderful paper people i met while at the show. i had talked to some of them online for nearly a year but had never met them in person. it was so nice to finally put some faces with the names and to see their products in person. too much fun!

Thursday, May 25, 2006

back from the show

i got back this afternoon from the show. i'm way too tired to give a full update right now, but i promise to do so, very, very soon....promise!

hope all has been well during my absence from the blogosphere!

Friday, May 19, 2006

on my way out the door

the time has come. i'm leaving in about a half hour for the airport. i'm all packed and ready to go...i hope. i hate that feeling that you're forgetting something.

i've gotten word from a fellow paper friend that my shipment arrived un-shrink wrapped and damage at the show site. i'm going to try and buzz in there tonight and check it out to make sure everything is still there. oh please, please, please let it all be there....especially my product.

thanks to everyone for the well wishes for the little dude and i. he seems to be over the worst of it and i manged to last this long without any symptoms. cross my fingers & knock on wood!!

i'll see you in a week!

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

i'm not complaining....really

i seem to have a problem getting to the national stationery show at 100% functionality.

two years ago:
i had just finished my first round of ivf and was 10 weeks pregnant. i had strict orders from the infertility docs not to do any heavy lifting....yeah, problem!

last year:
i had an emergency appendectomy and was released from the hospital just three days before getting on the plane to new york! yes, that's right. i had my appendix out less than a week before the show started. got on a plane three days after being released....with a 5 month old in tow. fun times. again, no heavy lifting allowed. i was miserable. barely functioning. my booth looked pitiful, but it was up, and that was all i cared at the time.

this year:
things are not looking good. the little dude is nearly 18 months old and has never...that's right....NEVER been sick. not so much as a runny nose. well, yesterday began the runny nose and sneezing. by bedtime i could tell things were not headed in a good direction. we were up from 11:00 - 1:00 crying and pitiful (him, not me). again at 5:00. today, it's a full blown cold. i don't know how one little guy can have so much snot. seriously. it's like a faucet. great timing! plus one of his eyes is red. i'm hoping and praying it's not pink eye. if it doesn't get better by tomorrow afternoon, i'm taking him in to make sure. i've already started myself on some heavy doses of echinacea and airborne. i CANNOT be sick for the show. i'm not going to let it happen again! it's going to be bad enough dealing with the guilt of leaving a sick child behind. i can't imagine being sick on top of that!

Sunday, May 14, 2006

the deserving

my intention was to write a nice little note to everyone about mother's day today. about how my hubby and son treated me to a nice breakfast in bed and a gift certificate to the spa. then, i started feeling a little selfish and guilty.

while i sit here with my happy child, there are so many other women out there who are still desperately waiting for theirs to come. i only know how this feels because at one time, that woman was me. i know personally how it feels to be the one who isn't able to celebrate mother's day....not by choice. the heartache of each year passing with no baby of our own, while everyone else around us seemed to be having them....easily....and even (gasp) unexpectedly. the feeling is unexplainable. it's one of those feelings that you just can't understand unless it's happened to you. the jealousy and the resentment were impossible to ignore. intellectually, you know that the pregnant women who seem to follow you everywhere are not at fault. they deserve to be pregnant, but at the same time, it's unstoppable. it seems out of your control.

i thought about this a lot when i became one of those pregnant women waltzing around the baby dept. at target. was some other woman secretly loathing my existence because i was pregnant and she was not?

and then i sit here complaining that we can't afford to have another one. how selfish is that when some others still don't have one to call their own. i have one....he's beautiful, healthy, perfect.

i now get to celebrate mother's day and get gifts of spa treatments and breakfast in bed....all because i was finally able to have a baby. how does this make me any better than those who cannot? it does not.

so here is to all of the women out there who want a baby of their own, but for some reason or another are unable....often suffering in silence, because it's "not something you talk about". they're the ones who are probably more deserving of a special day to call their own. one to honor all the treatments, painful procedures, failures, injections and crazy meds that make you loopy.

today i honor them. they are the deserving.

Thursday, May 11, 2006

my goodness!

seems our feature over on cool mom picks also got us some attention on blogging baby!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

cool mom picks

go check out our feature at cool mom picks today! yeah shades of violet!

As Seen at Cool Mom Picks

Monday, May 08, 2006

it's the little things. . .

that change when you have a baby.

it occurred to me this weekend when traveling to a family get-together 2 1/2 hours away. sure, there are a lot of big things that change when you add another member to your family, but really, it's the little things that tend to stand out to me.

so there we are, driving along, with the little dude taking his nap in the back seat. suddenly i realize that the chai tea i brought along for the trip had gone right through me. i mention to the hubby that i really need to use the bathroom. he asks me if i want him to stop. after contemplating it for a half second i realize that we can't stop. "if we stop, the little dude will wake up," i say. without further explanation, the hubby instantly understands the ramifications of such an event. for those of you who do not have children of your own; here's a breakdown:

tired baby + long car ride + too short of nap = nightmare baby for the rest of the day.

ah, the days of being able to use the bathroom whenever you'd like! like i really is the little things.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

mixed media

i can't even believe that may is here already! this year is just flying by! it's funny how working for myself is so much different than working in the corporate world. gone are the days where i long for i actually wish there were more days in the week....or more hours in the day. it's funny how my outlook is completely different now.

april was a decent month overall as far as business goes. i had double the sales that i had last april, which is great, but somehow it still seemed slow. i'm getting the feeling that may is going to be pretty pitiful up until the show. i could really use a few big orders to hold me over for awhile. cash seems to flow much more quickly out of my bank account this time of year during my preparation for the show. however, the money is not pouring in equally as well. i'm just hoping and praying that this year's show is a good one. i leave in just 2 1/2 weeks! hard to believe.

around the house:

the little dude learned how to walk down the stairs like a big boy. (facing forward and standing up as opposed to sliding down on his tummy).

the naughty mat seems to be working wonders! after only one week of use, the little dude started listening much better and has only had one visit to the mat in the last week. amazing what a little square of carpet can do!

the neighborhood drama has had more developments. we got a visit from the daughter of the family who's dog was accused of being dangerous. she dropped off a letter written by her parents defending their side of the story. very interesting letter. a few accusations were made and many grammatical errors were present. we haven't heard anything from either party (or the cops) in about a week now, so hopefully that will be the end of it.

Monday, May 01, 2006

mother's day special!

just in time for mother's' day! we're offering all of our loyal customers a discount to ensure that the mothers in your life get the perfect card this year. visit our new site.

for one week only, when you buy any two mother's day cards, you'll receive the cooking or gardening card of your choice free
of charge! (also great for mother's day!) just add the cooking or gardening card to your cart and then type in FREECARD at checkout to receive the discount on that card!

order now! this discount will only be available through monday may 8th.
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