People Helping People Around Town

I see many people helping out others who are less fortunate around town and we too want to help out.  One particular group would pair people together, no cash exchange to help out families and that to me is quite admirable.  There were two ladies who were on Main Street handing out stuff to keep people warm for the winter and a car company collecting winter clothing for children.  All very admirable I have to say and then of course, you see those who don’t really  need anything coming into the forum taking things from people who really needed them but what do you do?  you can’t call them out or you will be discriminating them.

I also saw a lady needing oil but the fuel bank wouldn’t do anything for her but thanks to some very generous people, the last I read, she had more than $400 worth of oil.  Hallelujah!  I don’t know who the lady is but I’m sure that would help her out for abit.

 Which comes down to the real reason why I wrote.  The organiser had called out the Mayor as well as the MLA for they had reply that they weren’t able to help.  On one hand I understand why they said no but on the other, $50 wouldn’t break them either.  But what is the protocol here for people who are calling out for help from the people who manages this town?  Do they have extra funds to help the people who are really in need?  or do they just have to turn a deaf ear or a blind eyes when help is really needed or worst dig into their own pocket to fund those in need?

It sure doesn’t seems a lot fair does it if they had to do that for everyone?  so what is the protocol?  one shouldn’t really blame the mayor or councilors if they are not that upbeat about digging into their own pockets because there are far too many people who are in need in this town.  But having said that, I have seen many people stepped up and help others.  Usually, I’ve noticed that these help comes from the less income folks but the elite, I haven’t seen lifted a finger to help.  Oh well, to each his own I guess.  Did we help?  yes, but we only did it anonymously.  We don’t need the credit , we just want to stay as low key as possible.

It Was Freezing Cold

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I’m so glad we didn’t have our Christmas decor up yet during the Xmas parade this year.  It was freezing cold !  i feel bad for the children out there in the cold watching the parade go by for 30 mins.  We did this once in the city because they said the city’s parade was better but it wasn’t worth it at all , waiting in the cold.  it was crazy!

My kid was sitting up in the windows watching the parade and keeping warm , i’m so glad she didn’t ask to go out.  So from now on , we ain’t decorating the store’s windows till after the parade. hahah!  we win!

Dancing For A Fund Raiser

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This summer we were invited by the Marriot Group for a fund raiser and dancing is involved. Lucky for me, I’ve taken some basic dance lessons when I was living in Asia because every now and then, we needed to attend cocktails thrown by the hotel.  Of course, my dance lessons were unlike those in  santa monica dance studios  where they gave professional instructions to groups or private lessons.  But for now, it will have to do.

I’m glad I didn’t embarrass myself or PB but I would loved to pick up some tips from a professional dance studio if i can in the near future.  As you all know I love wining and dining so much and I foresee that it will come in very handy for me.  At some point in our life, we will have to teach our kid how to dance for her first prom and also when she gets married as well plus dancing is a good form of exercise, now to convince PB to go with me.

Winter Renovation For The Store

We are planning to do a little bit of renovation at the store, so  Reid  it is to get all the tools we need for the DIY renovation work.  Why renovation?  because this winter, we are going to tackle the draft problem that we have had for years.  Sitting where I am, there is such a bad draft coming thru’ that I’m constantly cold and have a heater underneath my table.

Of course, the landlord isn’t doing anything about, so we are taking the bull by it’s horn and fixing it ourselves.  This way, I won’t be cold, the store won’t be paying so much to heat the store without bad draft and we can finally have a good winter from then on.

A New Vaccum

Now that the helper is gone, I needed something to clean the store whereby I don’t have to worry about it being too heavy.  The old one belong to my dead MIL and it was a good one but a really heavy duty one.  So I told the boss I needed one and we went out to get one when we had gone to get the movies a few weeks ago.

I love the new vacuum as I can swish it around anytime I needed and now the store has never looked cleaner.  Money well spent.  But now that we don’t have to pay someone for help, it’s more money to buy stuff for the store and save for a bigger store – woohoo!  in the meantime, we are still looking out to hire someone good.  But no hiring friends and family that’s for sure.

Migrating To USA

 My favorite customer turned into friend is migrating to USA with her family and since she is from Peru, she uses these  abogados de inmigracion  to help her out with the migrating papers.  I think it’s because people from Colombia, Peru or even Cuba has a harder time migrating to USA, therefore, some professional assistance is important.

She just leaves everything to these immigration lawyers and is busy saying farewell to everyone here in Canada.  Of course, I will miss her and her family plus her business but if she was moving because of a better job, I say go for it.  Good luck ! my dear friend!

Spring Decoration For The Store

So Christmas is over – all the decorations are down and kept away – thank God for Gary – who did everything from putting them up and bringing them down.  I don’t know what I will do without him now – but wait till he sees the  hanging baskets flowers  that I have pre-ordered for spring decoration for the store – haha!  I know it’s too early for Spring but when you own a store – you have to be a season ahead of everyone else.  So when it’s time to hang up the flowers, I know I have them already.   Of course, we are not going to have a lot of flowers indoors but some to welcome the spring and look forward to a fantastic summer.  I think this summer is going to be way better than last.

New Floors For The Store

We were looking for garage floor tile  but ended up deciding that the store need new floor more than the garage.    Now if only the store belongs to us – we would gladly replace the carpets in the store but since it doesn’t why waste money on it right?  So the boss gotta talk to the landlord and see if he would do the carpets or else we would have to save the money for the carpet of the store.  Now if he is willing to do it – then we can use the money we’ve originally saved up for the garage instead.  You see being your own business owner is not as fun as everyone thinks eh.  While people think that we are swimming with money and can buy anything we want – truth is we always think of the store first and paying everyone first before ourselves.  But when it comes to our kid – that’s a different story altogether.

Downtown Promotion

So I’ve been asked by other business owners what I had thought about the downtown promotion – you see they didn’t participate nor supported giving the anything to promote it because they were the ones who had said nothing would come out of it.  We did support the downtown promotion by giving a $50 gift voucher for the draw and also a buy 2 get the 3 game free coupon for the directory.  We had thought it was a coupon book to every household before Christmas – to encourage people to shop downtown with those coupon savings.

i do like the directory and we do appreciate the work done by the 2 employees but I think we might have expected something different – but this is the first time doing it – so I guess we all had different ideas since we didn’t attend the meetings for planning it since we were busy and don’t have any other employees except for Gary who comes and help us as a friend.  I think maybe next year – they should invite the residents to sit in for the meetings as well – because hearing the consumer/s is very important too.

Bigger Store ?

A few months ago – we had an opportunity to move to Starrs Road and this week we have an opportunity to move to a bigger store but right on Main.  Of course, rent is going to be more – about 50% more and to me – there are the pros and cons but with this economy and the landlord that we are going to stay with – may not be the best idea to move.   But the spouse is thinking about it seriously and wants to see what the landlord is going to do about the renovation first before he decides.  I’m still adamant that if we do move – it has to be Starrs road or not but this is not my store – so I cannot make the final decision.

YMCA Renovated

The local Y was renovated and it had a re- grand opening last week – on the weekend, unfortunately, we were not in town but it doesn’t mean that we would have gone either.  Usually events like this are for the town councilors and MPs  – so the boss and I rarely attend these things as he is not always into small chats.  He cannot be bothered usually and just wants to go back to the store to make money and work hard.  Lucky for me – he is not a man of many words but a man who does work – muahahah!!

Going Green @ The Store

So around our building we try to plant flowers and plants to beautify the store – but we don’t seems to be getting the right fertilizer because the flowers just don’t grow the way we want them to.  A customer told us about a composter that she used to grow her vegetables as well as her garlic and stuff – one day she even brought me some.   I don’t know if I would be successful growing my own flower plot and garden at the back of the store or not – but I could definitely use a composter at home for the spouse’s father had always wanted me to grow raspberries and other things and I loved growing my own herbs and cucumbers and peas.  So this compost bins are pretty easy to use I heard – and we are definitely checking it out.  If we can make the earth a better place to live in and eat healthy – why not right?

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New Anchor For The Mall

The rumor has it that since Zellers had been bought over by Target USA – they are not going to convert this Zellers into a Target store – so the mall will need a new anchor tenant.  I’m hoping that we get another Kmart – because years ago – the boss told me they had a Kmart and they had all sort of deal at the Kmart.  A lot of people loved Kmart – and we could use kmart coupons for shopping.  Unlike the current store locally – we don’t get coupons – so we can’t save as much as we would like.   Therefore, I’m keeping my fingers crossed and hoping against all hope that we get another Kmart as anchor tenant.   I asked the mall manager about it the other day – but she was quite secretive about it – but she didn’t set me straight – so I’m very hopeful.

Dungeons & Dragons Toys

We’ve brought in some Dungeons and Dragons toys for the game – and they are very cool!  I loved it ! and hope they will sell at our store.   I don’t know how much the boss will be selling it for yet – because it hasn’t been priced yet – but I got a box just for myself and the kid.

So if you are looking for some cool gifts for the boyfriend or husband who plays D & D – you know where to find us.

Making Wise Decisions When You Run A Business

When I used to work for a bigger company – I didn’t need to think of how the company’s money was being spent – I used to buy the most expensive stationary or fly business class only when I travel for work.  But now that the spouse owns his own business – it’s a different thing altogether.  Every penny spent needs to be carefully spent – from debit rolls to plastic bags – even our garbage bags.  When it comes to mandatory expenses like insurance for the store or insurance for the contents of the store – and the car insurance – we look for the best but cheapest insurance.  Everything else in our life  had taken a back seat for the longest time – but last year – the spouse took up a life insurance – because the business got better and this year – it’s my turn.  I hear that the cheapest life insurance quotes can be found  – so I’m going to check it out and get my life insurance done up – that way I don’t have to worry should anything happen.  You never want anything to happen – but if by any unfortunate incidents – it does – you want your loved ones to be protected too.

Dressing Appropriately For Work

Teenagers and young adults love coogi clothing and I fully understand it – it’s the “in” thing in this town  – but unless you are working in a casual environment or a sport store, shoes store – then you probably should leave those clothing and shoes when you are going out for the night with the girlfriend or boy’s night out.   If you were working at our store – for sure coogi clothing would be a great match – because we are on a casual environment type –  we ourselves wear jeans and sneakers to work – so we won’t expect our employees to be putting on a tie and suit to work.  But if you are working for a law firm or an accounting  firm – then probably  not.  So yes – you want to be dressing appropriately for work – and if you are not sure – ask ! and I’m sure someone will let you know.  Good luck all!

Our Customers & Us

I have to say that we have a darn good repertoire with our customers – so much so, that we’ve come to know them personally, their children, their parents and friends as well.  Yes – we are that good, we talk about anything under the sun – from having babies to beauty products to eye check ups, food reviews and even going to the gynecologist for thrush treatments.  Yes! you get the idea – we do compare – talk and learn from each other – we do pride ourselves for being so good with people and most customers actually turned into friends.   And I like the fact that there is nothing we can’t talk about – even personal stuff, it’s great to have customers like that eh.  I really love what we do at our store, many are such good people.

Saving Money On The Road

We used to travel to the city a lot for work – like visiting suppliers and looking at new products to bring into the store – many years ago.  And because of the traveling on the road so much – we also have roadside assistance that we had paid for – on  a yearly basis.  But when we got busy and had less employees – we were no longer able to go up to the city as often as we want to.  But since last year – we have been making more trips to the city for work – since the store is more stable now – and this year – we anticipate at least 6 trips to the city for work – within the next few months – plus we also have 2 trips to make to Moncton and Toronto for a family vacation and weddings – I’m glad that our roadside assistance covers both our RV and car  – and that really helps – because we don’t have to worry if we do get start in the middle of nowhere.   So yes – we are saving money big time on the road – and have a peace of mind – wherever we go.

Good Clientele, Good Repertoire

After 10 years in this town and Canada – I can finally say that I’m beginning to feel like I am at ease and have groundings here.  I don’t know if you know what I mean?  because for the longest time – I feel like I am an outsider – but nowadays – folks know that I’m the other half.  We now do have Good Clientele, Good Repertoire with our customers and in fact – I’ve picked up a good friend or two here.  I do feel good this year – with the store and the customers (of course – we still have the assholes!)  but overall, I think we are getting our grounds covered.

Fishing Community

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Nova Scotia is a fishing community – that means – not only do we have fishermen – we also have lots of truckers around our community.  And of course, we have those that we know that have moved to Alberta to join the oil rigs – and construction work.  But we don’t have any injury lawyersaround this area like they do in the States.   A few years ago – when the ferry terminal had an accident and caused some workers to stay in the hospital for weeks, I don’t think they were represented properly.  The took the Worker’s compensation and therefore – didn’t get the full compensation that they were supposed to get – due to the negligence of the ferry service.  It is quite sad – because one such worker – we know him personally – and today – he still walks with a limp and when the weather turned cold – he is in great pain.  Just not fair you would think – but if only he was giving the right advice then – he would not be in this position.  Sad!

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