Farewell 2020

posted in: Reflection 0

Farewell 2020...adios, au revoir, arrivederci, see ya, peace out and Bye Bye Bye.

The end of the year has us reflecting on the crazy year that was and thinking about what to expect from 2021. There is only one way to go but up. As parents and small business owners in New York City, this pandemic seemed to put us right in the epicenter of everything in more ways than one. We could tell you about the times we cried in the shower (the only place to be alone when you have kids in a NYC apartment), the hours spent on hold for small business loans (like the time the Small Business Administration recording said you are 1,121 in the queue), the roller coaster of misinformation about those loans and various relief programs, the difficult conversations with employees, the difficult conversations with customers (including 29 birthday party cancellations), trying to buy hand sanitizer on the black market...okay okay we'll stop right there.

Moving on to what we are proud of, what went right and the silver linings we can take into the new year.

The size of our location is a blessing and a curse. We have such limited capacity, but in this case it allows us to keep the overhead low and know that we can clean and manage every inch of the space to safely welcome small groups in. On the relationship front. We spent A LOT of time with our families and while teaching Kindergarten last Spring was certainly not ideal, I am thankful to have had all those extra hours and experiences with my own daughter. My favorite mom saying is the days are long but the years are short and it has proven to be so true. Our business partnership flourished, we always say we have totally opposing skill sets and a healthy respect for what the other brings to the table. This was ever more apparent as I applied for loans and got educated on all forms of technology while Judy glued individual pearls onto our new birthday party backdrops, repaired dresses and gave the store a face lift. Our customers are gracious and supportive and we are so thankful for them.

Things we will take into 2021. Virtual offerings. While nothing can replace the in store experience, we are proud of our virtual product and will continue to offer those programs going forward. Social media. We really focused on staying in touch with customers and utilizing Instagram to share behind the scenes info, craft and activity ideas and highlight fellow small businesses. We have built a community of like minded small businesses that we love working with and supporting and can't wait to do more of that in the future. And lastly, we hosted Santa for the first time ever and it was such fun that it will be on our December schedule for years to come.

We truly love running this business and we miss our customers! We know precious time is passing and they are growing up as we speak. Judy has been in the space on East 85th for over a decade and we plan to be there for at least another 10 years. We believe the magic of dress up and tea parties is timeless and of course we believe in our ability to deliver a first class experience, so we cannot wait to welcome you back in 2021.

Because once upon a time is now...