Swags For Music Fest

The music fest had just ended in town and every year I wished they gave out swags for those who attended the music fest, now that would be something to look forward to right?  Maybe, next year, we can buy altieri gig bags at wwbw  and sponsor the local music fest this way.  Who wouldn’t love one of these gig bags right?  I received one when I attended a street music fest in San Francisco one year.  Hopefully, next year the music fest organizers would approach us earlier that way we can make the order for them in time for the music festival.

Piano Lessons For Kids

Many parents wants their kid to take up piano lessons when they are young but they are afraid to get a real piano right away because you never know if you can keep the kid interested.  I can fully understand it because my kid had just started taking up piano lessons too.  We bought a keyboard for  her because it’s cheap and easily available but when she came home and told me that she needed to use a pedal for practicing I got worried too – that she may not be learning to do certain things correctly.   I had wanted to rush out to get her an acoustic piano but learned that a sustain pedal  is all I needed to get for her.   So for those who are worried about the same issues, have no fear because the sustain pedal is made to feel just like the pedals on the acoustic piano.

Stocking Up For Christmas


It’s 6 months away from Christmas but if I see something I can get for really cheap to decorate the store for Christmas, i would get it right away and stock up for Christmas.  In our kind of business, we only buy things that are wholesale prices – so when I saw these nutcrackers from  http://www.balletgiftshop.com for wholesale nutcrackers   I had to get them for decorating the doorway of the store.   I’m still looking for a bigger one for home and I can only afford a doorway one for home if I get them from a wholesaler.  If I had to buy it in a retail store, it would cost me double the price, so I always shop smart and buy them from wholesalers only.  One does have some perks when you own your own business.

Dog Friendly Town

When some dog owners complained that our town isn’t a dog friendly town, I think they are mistaken.  The town had put in so much effort for dogs and its owners to the extend of providing poop bags on Main Street for dog owners who do not pick up their dog poops was another example of how the town wants to encourage dogs to be downtown.  It’s the irresponsible owners who refused to pick up after their own dogs that makes the people in this town upset.  Dog lovers spend all sorts of money on their dogs and some bought  dog beds for large dogs  on a special site just because they have a huge dog, so why can’t they buy their own poop bags and pick up their dog’s poop?

Making it harder for those irresponsible dog lovers  who insist on dirtying the down to get away is the first and foremost thing to do.  Why go the round about ways right?  just give it to them straight.  And those regular town folks who hangs around the coffee shop should report irresponsible dog owners and get a stiff fine for these owners – that way they would never do it again.


Slow Computer

My computer in the office had been driving me nuts lately – and i suspect that it’s because of spyware since i loved watching my chinese movies online.  Regrettably, I’m unable to get any chinese movies here in town or even in the city because I’m in the West and the ones that is on Fairchild – that offers chinese shows are ones that I’ve already watched a long time ago.  And apparently, my free anti spyware  isn’t as good as the one that one paid for – thus I’ve decided to invest in a anti spyware that can protect my computer for work on real time.

Even thought the spouse is technically inclined, I don’t really want to make him work on my computer if he doesn’t have to – especially since he needs to clean out customer’s computer all the time.  So I’m pretty smart – and for those customers out there – you should get one too – because it’s definitely a good investment.

Tea Paradize In Downtown

Love new businesses in downtown and something that I liked too !  so I’m really excited and have been buying a lot of tea from them.  It’s slowly growing on all of us and they even have specialty coffee as well and I heard the gelato are coming in for the summer as well, now that would be a lovely treat for the kids.

New Store New Renovations

So our journey continues, looking for a bigger store to  move into and we have had several options from owning our own store to renting a bigger one.  But all needed some kind of renovation work – the difference is only – whether we have to fork out the money on our own or continue renting from the same landlord in a bigger location.  So I went looking at  replacement windows richmond va  for some prices for comparison – in case we decide to buy a building – which is the preferred option.  But any place that we decide to move needs good windows because we have had experience where the windows are not double paned, we ended up paying a lot in heat and that really almost caused us to close our store one year many  years ago.

So this time, we are going to be very smart, if we do move in anywhere, we are going to have the windows replaced and doors replaced since they are very old buildings and only by doing it the right way the first time, we don’t have to pay and arm and a leg for heat.   A lot is on the table right now and even though I rather stay at this location because of the best feng shui we’ve had in years, it’s a necessity for a bigger store.

A Business Opportunity

Yes, a building is up for sale and PB is interested in it – so he went for the first viewing and I went with him for the second viewing today.  Apparently there were several parties who were interested in it too but a look at inside the building makes me hesitant because it was not taken care of.  But there is potential and if we had the time and money for some major over-haul then it would be a great project and investment to make.

But as it is – we don’t have a lot of time on hand and we rarely have good luck with carpenters or construction workers here in this town.  Although I’m familiar with new hotels and looking at structural defects, Canada is far different from Asia and the type of contractors I was used to.

Back home I’m a very tough worker, but in Canada I tend to be a lot more laid back even with the employees because over here, they can quit and go on unemployment or sue you if they feel that they are not happy with you.  The unemployment agencies in this province seems to be more for the workers than the employers.

Just yesterday, I was told by our worker that he wished he would have known we are gonna be a few minutes late because he would have brought his meds with him.  We were only gonna be 5 mins late – and he was upset with us?  So if we are gonna be tough on the contractors like back home, they can quit and leave the job halfway ?

Unlike in Singapore I cannot hire another team because there are already so feel contractors  – so yes, to take on this project is going to be quite the heartache for us and a lot of stress I foresee but still it is a good business opportunity and I don’t wanna be a wimp about it and stop PB from buying it.

Office Automation

Many a times we have customers asking for software for their computers like the   web workflow software  or the powerpoint software and sometimes drawing software.  And as much as we would love to be a one-stop shop for every customers need, there are just too much software out there to stock every thing there is out there.

As a small business, we know that the changes in software’s need is so rapid, so instead of stocking them, we only order them when a customer needs them.  Unfortunately, not everyone is willing to wait for the software to arrive in a few days but luckily, web workflow software can be downloaded immediately through the website, I wished that other software allows my other customers to download immediately with a code, now that would make things a lot easier.  One can always hope that one day it would be so easy, even with a kiosk that sells the software would be great for our store.


Back In Its Hay-days

Back in the hay-days, Mr Leonard`s looked quite the flourishing business but some 4 years after he died of heart problems suddenly, the building was left closed up and no one took care of it.  It doesn`t look like this anymore of course and it`s quite a shame truth be told.  We were interested in buying the building but a check with our carpenter, it looked like there were more damage inside and outside and on top where the roof is.  He cautiously predicted a renovation of up to $100K no less.

So even though the people who owned the building were very reasonable in asking for the said price, it would mean that we would have still overpaid for the building in the end.  Plus with not much reliable contractors to handle such a huge job, we figured we better hold off on offering any money for the building.

We are quite disappointed if you asked me – but I`m not into buying a building that needs that much repair, no time and don`t want to be in such a project.

Storing Our Vehicles For Winter

Some cars we only use during the summer because during the winter, there is too much salt on the ground and also we don’t have winter tires for the vintage car that my father-in-law keep for a hobby.  This year we are thinking of buying another vehicle for plowing the snow with so a  bendPak lift may be the way to go, if we want all our cars kept in the garage.  So instead of building another garage or expanding the present one, the easy fix is to get a bendpak lift which is way cheaper than buying a storage unit or renting one in the long run. The ones we saw for our need is not expensive at all but of course, they do have the heavy duty ones for people who likes to work on their cars or trucks during the winter.  I do like the use of these lift because we can store it away when we don’t need them and they can be easily move from one place to another.

Good Deals For Christmas

Everyone wants to look for a great deal for Christmas and I don’t blame them and even though we own our own small business, we are still looking out for good deals in anything we need.  We wanted to get some cigars for our business associates and clients – like those that give us regular business (ie :  the schools and some rental places and of course the justice department) because without them, we won’t be around for this long.  Cigars in town are quite expensive, there we get them from some  cigar auction sites  after I accidentally stumble upon it.  Now I can get any amount of cigars that I liked by bidding on them. But I do read up on them and it tells me exactly what I’m bidding for, sometimes i can get cigars at really good prices here.   I used to only know how to buy the Davidoff brand but now with the auction site, I am able to see more varieties at a good price, so buying Christmas gifts for Christmas don’t break our bank no more.

Feng Shui For Offices

Many people uses feng shui for their homes and offices and water fountains from  henri fountains  has a whole range of of water fountains that one can buy to use in their offices or home.  I’ve considered using a water fountain at the store myself  – but they say that placing a water fountain at the store needs to be placed in a wealth position and the wealth position  needs to be calculated according to the people who are in the store or the person who owns the store.  So I prefer to let the experts tell me where my wealth corner is – that way I wouldn’t make any mistake and have the store suffer a loss in money.  Of course, for those who just want a water fountain to beautify the office or home, you can do so too.  But anything to help the store make more money is good – a prosperous store is what we all want for the business.

Fishing Season Open Soon

Dumping day is just round the corner and the fishing season for the town is about to begin here – I see the fishermen with their trucks all ready with  jib crane  for the season.  The weather had been really warm just like last year – I wonder how it would affect the fishermen this year – but one can always be hopeful right?  Fishing had been the mainstream livelihood for this town for the longest time but the fishermen rarely spend their money in town it seems – they also usually go on holidays with the entire family as soon as the weather turns really cold here.   We don’t usually see them around before the fishing season starts and after the season ends – they are all out of town – but the people who benefits from the fishermen are the car dealers, the heavy machines business and of course the oil company but I still wish them well – and hope  that the season will be a good one for them.

Selling & Buying Used Computers


We buy and sell used computers all the time at the store and buying and selling of used computers are a lot more profit than selling a new computer if you must know.  But there are work to do when someone brings their old computer to sell to us – first we have to  erase hard drive  , clean everything up and make sure that all the drivers are in them before we can place them out for sale.  So if you bring in your computer to us, you can actually make it easier for us if you erase your own hard drive first – so that all your personal information will not land into another person’s hand by accident.  Sometimes, we also upgrade the ram before putting them out for sale – that way the customer buying the used computers will be able to have a better computer with just a little bit extra.

You will be surprised how many people come in looking for a used computer – whether for a back up computer, or a computer for their children or older parents.  But yes, we do sell a lot of these used computers and will keep selling them at a good price but of course, we will make sure that you will get the best out of what you need it for.

Back Pain While At Work

 3 weeks ago, my back started hurting where the spine is.  I know I didn’t do anything strenuous at all nor could I have a slipped disc  – not possible.  So I was guessing, it was probably strained from carry my kid and some baby that belongs to a friend.  Anyhow, I started taking pain killer with codeine in it but it didn’t helped at all.  Everyone’s advise was to go see a doctor or a chiropractor but I know that it wasn’t that serious and time will ease the pain and I will get some relieved some time soon.  But after having the painf or 2 weeks, I was beginning to get worried, especially if one needed to work and look after a kid full time.  Of course, my back is feeling much better now and then I saw this meds called traumeel  – now if i had known about this meds – I would have tried this too.  This meds sounds really like something I need and they are about the same prices that I paid for – my pain killer with codeine.  What a little research on the net can do for one eh.

Health Insurance For Workers

Workers compensation here in the West only covers so much for the worker and we’ve been looking for health insurance for our workers and ourselves lately because the store is doing better this year than we did for the last couple of years.  So it’s time to look out for ourselves as well and like they say – the workers is our greatest asset and if you don’t take care of your assets than you are not going to be making a lot of money.  Blue Cross can get very costly but I know that they do cover you for dental and the  best hearing aid  if you need it and we all know that when you get older you do need them. We do have a ear, mouth and nose specialist in town and he told us recently that hearing aids are much more needed by workers than we think.  But we are going to check out other insurance agencies to see if we can get a better rate to cover our health and others.

Car Trouble At Work

I was having some trouble with our car door for the longest time and a customer who had seen me come out of  the car with so much difficult came to help me one day when I got to work.  It was the  rivet nut  that needed replacing and truth be told I wouldn’t know what to do but most men are very handy and this one being a mechanic, well, he knew what was wrong with the door immediately.  It didn’t take him too long to fix it and now my car door is all good.  I’m grateful for all these good customers and I can named a few who have been helping us throughout the years we’ve been in business, so as much as I don’t like retail business, I have to say that these helpful and good customer does make my day.

Before We Put Away Our Sandals

Before we put away our spenco sandals  we are going to head out to the beach one last time before the weather turns too cold for the beach.  So we hope to head out to the city this weekend and visit Peggy’s Cove and head out to the waterfront  or  the beach if the weather permits if not, we will have to  swim in the hotel’s pool.  I don’t know if we are going to have time to head out to the city again anytime soon but I’m hoping it won’t be too long before we go again because of my Chinese/Japanese  food and the swimming pool in the hotels that we stay in.  I’m so looking forward to this weekend and if you are wondering why we didn’t go during the long weekend, it’s because nothing is open during the holidays here.

New Business In Town

A financial institute is supposed to be coming next door to us where the gift store used to be but for months now since last year November, they had been renovating the inside of the store.  The other day, our parking space was taken again and work was being done according to the boss at the empty store, so I had wanted to go during lunch time to ask them to move their van and saw some  church chair  inside the empty store front – I am guessing that they will be moving in really soon.   I’m extremely curious to know who they are because the old gift store neighbor had always been good with us.  Unfortunately, the physio-therapy office on the other side never even bother to say hello – so sad.  But yes, some office chairs that looks like chairs that my church uses were all wrapped up still and sitting and waiting to be unwrapped.  Can’t wait to see who our new neighbor is.