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    November 25, 2014

    Reasons why Phillip will need therapy in January (SORRY PHILLIP)

    The big fun thing that happened in the last few days was I SAW THE BAKERY NAME ON A WEBSITE THAT IS NOT ONE OF MINE. (Scroll to #7!) I only found this out from glancing at our stats and seeing a referral from the Seattle Magazine website. That was fun! I am absolutely certain that some staffers were told to compile links for an article and did a bunch of googling, but whatever, WE GOT MENTIONED. For a while now I've been noodling over doing some sort of press release, with pictures and Human Interest Angles (sisters! moms of toddlers!), but I keep balking. Part of it is the "what if no one cares!" fear, but most of it, I think, is that if we DO do that, then Thumbprints gets even MORE real and LESS of a hobby/side gig/experiment. 

    Except, Thumbprints ceased to be an experiment the day the corporate caterer printed our three kinds of macarons (candy cane, gingerbread, clementine) and "assorted holiday cookies" on their menu. Since then we've received invoices for 9 orders (although I was given a heads up about two more tonight) and just those 9 orders total over 800 cookies. And this is BEFORE Thanksgiving - what happens AFTER Thanksgiving, when more people start thinking about their workplace holiday meetings and gatherings? Eeek. 

    Oh, the other fun bakery thing is that I finally put up an online order system. THAT was a giant pain. But my own fault, as per usual. I spent weeks upon weeks creating graphics and writing copy for Storenvy, but when the Storenvy platform proved less than efficient for various reasons, I had to chuck it all and start over. I ended up using the Square Marketplace platform (we already use Square to take credit cards in person) because Lisa (@pixelatedmama, God bless her) sent me a link with directions for embedding a store "menu" into your OWN WEBSITE. Which is IDEAL, yes?! I honestly thought I could only do something like that if I bought a shopping cart dealie and paid someone much smarter than me to code it all up. 

    Sorry to anyone bored to tears over this stuff, but it's really all I do anymore. That and freak out about how I don't know anything about accounting. (Neighbor Ursula, who also finds herself in the throes of small business woe, has given me contact info for A Lady Who Comes To Your House And Sets Up Your QuickBooks For You and guess what I am doing as soon as the Christmas rush is over.) 

    SPEAKING OF URSULA. Okay. So (giant subject change here) I recently created massive Family Upheaval by telling my folks we (as in me, Phillip, and our kids) were going to do our own Christmas this year. HORRIBLE! My family celebrates Christmas on Christmas Eve, which is the proper way of doing things. We get together in the late afternoon and then it's snacky food and prosecco and presents and Christmas carols and loudness until everyone drags themselves to bed. Then on Christmas Day we (me, Phillip, and the kids) wake up, open our own family presents, go to church, come home, and host a brunch for Phillip's [much smaller] side of the family. Because my parents live about 50 minutes away, it's kind of a Thing to get down there and back on Christmas Eve, and then do all the Christmas Day stuff. It also means we can't go to the Christmas Eve Mass at our church (which is BETTER than going to Mass on Christmas Day IT JUST IS) and last year it meant my kids couldn't be in the Christmas pageant. Which was VERY SAD [for me] and I just felt like it was Time, you know? Time to start doing our own thing in our own house. 

    However! Because my family is awesome and we WANT to have our Christmas Eve party with the 14 grandchildren together all at once, my parents and siblings generously decided we could do our big family Christmas on the 23rd and everyone could have their own family Christmas (or go to my parents' house, whatever floats their boats) on the 24th. I was very much looking forward to Christmas at my parents' house on the 23rd, doing the Christmas pageant and Mass on the 24th and coming home to open our own family presents and start our own Christmas Eve snacky traditions, and then put on the Cheung family brunch the next day, without rushing around. YAY!

    Then Ursula came over and I was asking her when the Christmas pageant is this year (she goes to my church) and she was all, "There is no Christmas pageant." 

    HA HA HA

    Also, it turns out there wasn't a pageant last year either! It was just a children's CHOIR! But the guy who usually puts that on has a different job this year and no one has stepped up to take over and NOTHING IS HAPPENING. AND I CHANGED MY WHOLE FAMILY'S CHRISTMAS PLANS FOR NOTHING! 

    And then Ursula said, "WE should do it!" And I said, "Yeah!" And that is how I find myself 1) up to my ears in macarons and sugar cookies, running a brand new business during its craziest time of year AND 2) hosting a Christmas party AND 3) creating a Christmas pageant from scratch at my church, where I don't know anyone. This is either going to be the most awesome December on record, or my husband is going to leave me by December 26th. Shall we take bets? 

    Other things I need to do: 

    Christmas cards? I didn't do these last year. I hate that. I need to do them this year.

    Buy Christmas presents for P's side of the family. (My side? DONE. I am TAKING NAMES, people.)

    Decorate. (We're doing this tomorrow.)

    I almost never do Christmas stuff before Thanksgiving (besides send out our party invites), but this year? I mean, Katie's been warning me since JULY that I should get my other stuff done so the baking doesn't kill me. I started buying presents in October. And we're decorating tomorrow (sans the tree) because we'll be at my parents' house for Thanksgiving and then spending the rest of the weekend in Canada with Phillip's family. When we get home it will be SO NICE to have all our Christmas stuff up! I'm excited. I'll also be able to make a Stuff I Need For The Party list nice and early. 

    As for Thanksgiving.... MEH. I was going to make something NEW to bring to my family Thanksgiving this year, but of course I had no ideas and then my mom called this morning and asked me to be in charge of the wine. THAT I CAN DO. I feel bad that Thanksgiving is just a bump in the road to Christmas [FOR ME], but whatever, one has one's favorite holidays, yes? 

    OKAY I HAVE TO GO NOW. THINGS TO DOOOOOOO

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