Tolkien, artist

Winding Down and Holiday Cheer

 The Holiday Season is winding down. Chickie is busy making leather items for her friends, I am busy making a last couple of gifts for friends of mine, and the shopping panic has hit the general public. We've been getting a lot of customers (for which I am very thankful) spending more than their usual amount (for which I am also very thankful) because the realization that Christmas will occur in less than a week has finally hit and panic has struck. We are selling craft supplies because people are still making things (some of them are absolutely wonderful in conception). But we are also selling finished product - rings, earrings, pendants and bracelets as well as tools and books and lots of Gift Certificates. And I am very grateful because this is the quantity of people and the general interest that I have been missing this year.

Sandi Reindeer

These crazy reindeer antlers stay on my head no matter
if I have to bend down to floor level or lean over a countertop.

The store, which has been in our current location since 1993, has been our main method of making a living for the past 25 years. It either makes it or we have to find other employment. Given that the employment picture is bleak because of our economic condition in the world today, we rely on the shop to pay our expenses and those of our employee. This year has been a hard one, but this week at least gave me hope that under the right circumstances we can still be busy and happy helping customers find products to make the perfect item. That's fun for all of us.


Chickie Jester

Chickie usually wears a hat year-round, but for the Holiday
Season she wears a jester hat with a snowman pin.

We get into the holiday spirit in a variety of ways - we have our frenetic Christmas tree who's lights flash on and off in a completely unpredictable fashion, we have Christmas carols on the radio (and often sing along with them because we know almost all of them by heart) and we wear our holiday gear. I have the set of reindeer antlers in the first picture. They stay on my head even if I am bending completely over to get something from a lower bin - I have never found another headgear that fits me as well. And Chickie wears her jester hat with a Swarovski snowman pin. I wear a larger version of the Swarovski snowman as a necklace. If you don't have fun with the holiday season when you're working retail, it can really get to you. So we sing, we play, and we try and make the lives of every customer a little more festive. As we enter this final week of the season - Solstice for me and Christmas for many of you - I thought I'd share a little Stormcloud Trading holiday cheer with all of you.
Lovely post and wonderful pictures! You and Chickie look super!

I am very glad that the retail has been going better for you too! :)
Oh, what fun! Thanks for sharing the photos, She-of-One-El! You and Chickie are quite the festive bead shop proprietors. :^)

Solstice, Christmas...I celebrate 'em all. :^D

Off to find some greenery for the mantel now.
My mother was always of the belief that she would celebrate anything if she could have or attend a party. Gifts were even better. So we were pretty open on what we would celebrate.

In my house we celebrate Solstice, Christmas, and my DH's birthday (which is the day after Christmas).

Thanks to all for the kind comments. I know that I don't photograph well, but Chickie looks great in every photo I've ever taken of her over the years. Lucky, youthful Chickie ... LOL

- Erulisse (one L)
Your mother has an excellent philosophy!

You look just fine in that photo, like you're ready to burst out laughing and that's a good look on anyone.

As far as photogenicity (if that's a word) is concerned, I know I am not, but apparently David Beckham begs to differ:

Pandë as a tattoo
You are very kind, Pande. And Beckham is always a pleasure to look at :-)

- Erulisse (one L)