Friday, January 29, 2010

Moving Copper Willow!

My January has been consumed by a big move in my business. Last fall, Leora and I decided it was time to think about moving. We were outgrowing our space and as a whole, the old space wasn't up to snuff. After viewing lots of spaces and even going through some bidding on a couple, we landed a space in the arts district of Culver City. Not a super busy area as of yet, but just down the street from the super busy downtown area, so hopefully the trend with travel that way. We signed our lease around Christmas and immediately brought in a contractor to ammend some walls and paint. We moved out of the old space by the 18th, which was very strenuous. We had movers relocate the machinery of course, but we really had so much stuff otherwise! Lots was donated, recycled or trashed. Lots still left over from the old owner. The set up of the new space quickly followed so we could honor a "soft" opening (no publicized) for Feb. 1. The space is looking great! Still lots of details remaining like some lighting and painting, signage, some shelf stocking, etc.

My mom has been a great help during this process. I've had to be at the shop constantly, so she's pitched in a ton of free time to help with Laurel's care. Mom is also one of the vendors who will be participating in our co-op retail space. She's going to be making paper floral arrangements.

Laurel seems to like the space a lot. Lots of room for her to run about and right now, too many things for her to make mischief with! I've been keeping her out for the most part because our heating unit is being replaced and it's been very cold.

We've had a ton of rain. Both during the move and mostly during the set up of the new store. The temparatures and moist weather have made the experience less that comfortable. In one of our many outings to the "mickey store", I bought Laurel some Minnie rain boots that she just loves to wear:).

Laurel is breaking out of her Disney-only clothing rule. She loves dresses, red and green ones especially. If it's not something Disney, she will wear a dress. If it's neither of those, I have to find some feature on the shirt or about the pants that is so pretty and cute that I can gush to her about! Laurel's favorite non-Disney things are those passed down to her by her cousin, Amber - 8 months older. If I tell Laurel it is Amber's sweater or shoes, she loves to wear it!
Laurel is still resisting the potty, so we're just waiting it out. But in food, she's made some acceptions. She is now enjoying peanut butter - especially on apples. She just loves it. She doesn't like to hold the apple with peanut butter because she doesn't like to get the peanut butter on her fingers. She's a clean, non-sticky girl. She doesn't like mess, gunk on her hands, and therefore won't touch things that she knows will mess her hands. Laurel's motor skills are advancing nicely. She is becoming very confident on stairs, eagerly using the hand rail to go up and down and insisting on doing it herself. on some stairs she will even slowly stomp up the stairs without using the rail at all. She's quite proud of herself:). Laurel's vocab has made some great leaps too. She's been working on her 3+ word phrases all of January but only recently starting talking about how she feels - I am tired, I am hungry for dinner. Also things that she wants or needs - I need napkin, I want tv on, etc. She just seems like a sponge lately!

Laurel is becoming a great little friend to other kids at her play school. She talks often about her friend George and my mom saw her playing and holding hands with some other tots when she picked Laurel up one day. Kids seem to be drawn to each other, so whenever we go anywhere and she runs into someone else her size, an interesting interaction occurs. They talk and giggle, sometimes shy, but then they play and get silly.
When playing she likes to push baby dolls in her stroller, play with her characters in the castle, serve and play tea, do puzzles, read books, color and paint. Her favorite thing is stickers still, lots of sticker books litter the house. She also likes the potato heads and play dough.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Christmas 2009

Christmas this year was pretty chill. We didn't travel much this fall at all now that most of our loved ones are located on the west coast. As Christmas came closer, I realized I had shopped for pretty much everything in needed and was ready way ahead. That was nice. Copper Willow's schedule though has been hectic. All in good ways, but all at the same time! Our holiday album was only in a few stores this year, it's debut season, but was a hit! So there was lots of busy-ness in custom-land. We've also decided to move! That's a big deal. We found a spot on Washington, in what hopes to be an up and coming area of Culver City, in the arts district. Our contractor has started and should finish up after the new year for a mid-Jan move for us. It will be quite a project as we still haven't fully gone through everything left over by the previous owner! But the new space is bigger and should be a really nice paper and printing haven for our little business.
In the midst of all of that, Laurel had gotten ready for Christmas. Presents slowly started collecting under the tree. She helped me wrap by putting some tape on, picking bows and scribbling her name on the tags. She even remembered which presents are for who, just by the wrapping!
Christmas Day started at Laurel's usual wake-up hour, 8 am. (Over time her 7/7:30 wake up got pushed later and so did everything else. She goes to bed around 9:30 and naps around 1:30...she's a night owl). Mom and Megan were with us in the morning to start with Laurel's stocking and breakfast. We then went for the presents and after all of that was finished, there were many naps taken! After everyone arose, we drove down to Mike's house in Yorba Linda. Christy and Mike got engaged a few weeks prior and so there was a lot of celebrating and toasting for multiple occasions!
Laurel was great with opening presents with great appreciation. Her Disneyland princess castle was easily a hit. She also has a tricycle, some new clothes, some new dress up items and some games and play figurines. The present opening in Orange County was a flurry of excitement and flying paper as usual. The kids were the best part, I think we could have all just watched them as a present:).