(Me among the boxes of product feeling quite overwhelmed!)
I am not quite sure how to start this blog post. I think my struggle is in line with the notion that "thank you seems so inadequate..."
I'm a bit overwhelmed by the kindness and generosity of the many people that have contributed to the En Liten Svensk (A Little Swedish) Shoppe's creation. This morning I'm spending a little time reflecting on what it has taken to get to the official Shoppe opening. It all began with a conversation and an idea and now it's a reality... a beautiful testament to the hard work and dedication of so many people.
(My mom and I on opening day... we look a little weary. Amazing bouquet from my dear sister-friend, Jodi.)
Sure, I'll take some credit (for hard work and persistence) but this is soooo not a one-woman show. There's many collaborators and I'm really fortunate to have these people in my life.
There's been many small, but crucial steps along the way... the details that make the difference about the feeling of a space which we believe is important for our customers and those that love Scandinavian culture and art as much as we do.
(Aunt Teresa and my dad bringing "big ideas" to life.)
(My dad prepping the sign for the exterior of the building.)
(My husband and dad hanging the sign on a very windy day.)
The following folks, some I've only recently met and some I've reconnected with after many years of being gone from Roseau, have been invaluable to the Shoppe's opening.
Did I mention I'm grateful...?!
~Ross - for creating a beautiful barn wood bench that has added the perfect eclectic touch to the Shoppe.
~Sheila - for hand-painting the authentic Dala horse sign that adorns the outside of the Shoppe.
~Cindy - for the beautiful Scandinavian design on the flyers and for the many, many wonderful ideas.
~Goin' Postal - for their generosity when printing the flyers and the bonus poster for the Shoppe.
~Wholesalers and Importers - Beth, Marie Louise, Mark, Martha, Marissa, Mary, Caila, Liv, Lisa and many more folks I haven't had the chance to meet for being open to countless questions and my learning process. And for being supportive and sharing in my enthusiasm.
~Local Artist Vendors (Janet, Bonnie, Tallie, Bob, Karen, Jean, Liesa, Pat, Dean, Jolene) - you have been generous with your time and talents. Your support and your dedication to your art and to our community shines... the Shoppe would not be a "destination" without you.
~Delaine - for stepping right back in to being my "second mom" and for all of your printing support.
~Pete - for your construction skills and talent for creating a beautiful, open retail space out of former law offices and a bank!
~Jen - for creating beautiful Swedish cookies reminiscent of my childhood to offer to guests and customers during opening weekend. And for knowing I'd need more cookies...
~Duane - for being an all-around great guy and a super cool landlord.
~Amy - for being open to questions and ideas about "where's that?" and "who's that?" and for flyer delivery.
~Community of Roseau - every day has been a "mini-reunion" and a reminder of why I was so determined to come home again.
~Mary Hoffer and the C & C - for the lovely plant and wholehearted welcome, support via online advertising and for helping to generate interest about the Shoppe.
~Fellow business owners in Roseau - thank you for visiting, for supporting a new business and for your feedback and ideas about how we can continue to thrive together.
~NW Foundation Mentors (Deb and Grant) - for being "idea factories" and for asking the hard questions.
~Sandpiper Designs (Kati, Paige and Wendy) - for patience with a new, overwhelmed business owner and for the window clings which are the icing on the cake.
~Scott's True Value - thank you for being a few doors down and always having that "little thing-a-ma-jig" we need.
~Nathan and Crew - for being young and strong and willing to move big, awkward furniture.
~Pam - for sharing your experience, generosity of ideas, resources and support.
~Simon and Peter - for showing up at "just the right moment" from Sweden and for the thoughtful bouquet to celebrate our opening.
~Aunt Kathy - for being there with support, coffee-making skills and kindness on opening weekend.
~Aunt Teresa - for all things design and detail... and mostly for being generous, loving and available when we need you.
~Mom and Dad - for supporting me when I wanted to come home again, for being there every step of the way, and for being tireless and unconditionally loving.
And last but not least -
~Bob, Alex and Garrett - for never doubting me, for listening endlessly about the new Shoppe, for letting me run away to Roseau for a while while I pursue a dream and for being the best husband and children I could ever hope to have.
I'm worrying I may have missed someone and if so, you have my apologies - please stop in for complimentary coffee!
It's been a journey to say the least and without question, a reminder that hard work pays off in ways we may not realize until we sit down at our laptop and reflect a bit.
Here's to many years of success which for me, translates into offering a space to gather and connect, reminisce about our common histories, and chat about the weather, our families and what's for supper.
See you at the Shoppe!