I have a small boy to thank for turning around a terrible day and bringing joy to me and to others in the way that only children can. Making a product yourself and marketing it at retail & craft shows is hard, hard work. Our little pop-up shops (whether indoors or outdoors) take a lot of heavy lifting, schlepping and crazy logistics (none the least of which is childcare) to pull off. Obviously I love what I do and I do love the direct contact with my customers and the mutual joy when a new customer finds my booth/tent and exclaims, “where have you been? I love this!”
This past weekend was one of my favourite shows of the year (The Cabbagetown Arts and Crafts Sale in Riverdale Park), but it turned out to be one of the most challenging of the year due to incredibly bad weather (for outdoor craft shows….GREAT for ducks!)
Overnight between Friday and Saturday, a major storm caused the destruction of quite a number of vendors’ tents (including our friends at Patouche) and worse, damage to some people’s hard-worked-for goods. Saturday got off to a difficult start for everyone, with fears that no customers would even come (hence no sales to offset our efforts and investment).
As my husband works around the clock during TIFF (Toronto Int’l Film Festival) I had to bring my younger son along with me for the entire day. Initially he complained as we traveled across town in the pouring rain on TTC – but when we arrived (and just as my confidence was flagging) he warmed up to the day and began singing and splashing with his umbrella and rain boots amongst the broken tents and stressed-out vendors.
Throughout the day, he played with the costumes and pranced around the park. He found new ‘clever’ ways to wear our new Eye Patches and wore my new Power Cuff prototypes all day long. Somehow all the drama and stress evaporated from me. It was replaced by joy and satisfaction in what I do and fierce gratitude to be his mother. How I love this little boy!
When’s the last time you looked at your child and thought your heart would simply burst with love? That’s what happened for me on this day.