Tag Archives: sarah richardson design

kind & generous

30 Jun

The lazy days of summer are a lie.  I discovered that last week and each day has confirmed it.  I love having my boys home, truly. I just didn’t realize that when their vacation started, mine would end.  I have played basketball, hockey, charades, golf, gone swimming to the mall & more.  We have been on “break” for exactly 6 days.  Critics may say I am contributing to the problem, that I should simply let them play.  I agree.  But we live on  street nestled away, quiet & peaceful.  Birds visit often.  But children, not so much.  Don’t misunderstand, left to their own devices, they would play these same games.  It would just be for minutes rather than hours.  Or end in a fight.  Or with a sprained finger, the way it did earlier.  I spent so much time when they were younger, encouraging them to make friends and be more independent and to play with others and too late, I discover this has totally backfired.  Short of moving to Sesame St ( or whatever the current cool equivalent is) they will have to accept the fact that their friends are not always going to be around.  Today was double the disappointment as both boys  thought they had plans with pals that did not work out in the end.  I felt like a failure for not having prepared them for this sort of disappointment (and yes I do recognize this is a minor one, perhaps just above realizing that your mom ate the last oreo).  But I dare you to spend 5 minutes in a room with two forlorn children.  Theoretically, there are all sorts of solutions (and some might argue that this is not even an actual problem) but for this day, in that moment it was.  And we were all in a funk.  Which sucked, because today I was going to write about the generosity of others….

I wanted to write about my old, old (sorry Dan) school friend who suggested that I consider turning the clothes swap in to a business.  And then when I politely ignored her, she  um, re-suggested it.  In fact, she is a successful entrepeneur herself  ( http://www.admiralroad.com )   and in the midst of writing a reference book with her business partner for other mompreneurs and yet she eagerly shared many ideas and insights with me.  I don’t think she realizes it but she has been invaluable in giving me the chutzpah to even think I could pull this off.  And then my next oldest friend Liz, found the words –  when I couldn’t –  to write my press release for me.  In a very short amount of time (and a huge heaping of patience), she was able to articulate suzieswapper in a way I never could.  A few kind strangers, hearing about my new biz, have made a point of sending me shout -outs and encouragement.  Tania Semper of efashionista.ca made it a point to pass along some valuable contacts.  Her business is planning a Fall launch so even more sweet, considering how busy she is.  And along the way, I have received tons of support from new friends Veronique and Jennifer, owners of a fabulous new spa Bella Clinique as well as my new bff’s from Smith Farms Products.  Their organic skincare line is  addictive!  I also became a member of  FTA (Fashion Takes Action), a company committed to finding innovative and eco-friendly ways to be fashionable.  Jill Balser’s incredible enthusiasm and encouragement is contagious and sincere. She has me convinced this is the right path for me!

Recently, I decided to create a fabric pouch to use for my calling cards.  My next idea was to ask, um, someone, to donate their fabric scarps/remnants to me for this purpose.  I though it was another innovative way to showcase the creative ways  we can reduce/reuse (and remain pretty & cute!).  so I asked a few gals,  Annabelle & Emeline of the newly opened sewers dream workshop/studio/ cafe and they generously agreed.  And just for fun, I sent out an email to my all-time favorite tv show host from Design Inc, Sarah Richardson & her amazing colleague Natalie. I explained what suzieswapper was all about, and asked them ( really really nicely) if they would also consider donating some fabric. And they did!

So, on a celebrity scale,  I would have to say Ms. Richardson is my bestest and biggest contributor.  But in real life, hands-down, it has been my two closest friends, Patrick & Caroline.  In Danielle’s upcoming book, she argues in favour of having a business partner, if for no other reason than to have another person as willing to talk about the biz as you are. At this point, I bet they would just as soon see this project fold as succeed, as long as I would shut up about it from time to time.  I do make a point of asking about their days, their plans.  But we all know I’m just faking it.  I can’t help it.  On so many levels, this is the most exciting thing I have created (Stop right there, I have not forgotten my children – but seriously – the whole getting pregnant & then  giving birth is many a splendid thing, but creative it is not).  Put it this way – when my oldest was just a few days old, I used to take him to the local cafe and sit on the patio, drinking a latte and reading the paper, acting oh so casual…until  a stranger would  comment, politely & innocently on my newborn.  Patrick had to interupt many a conversation where I would – in great red cheeks flaming just at the memory of it all – explain in excruciating detail, my son’s latest bowel movement, frequency of, etc.  I just found it all so fascinating, really & truly.  So you can imagine the “crap” that Caroline & Patrick have to put up with now.  And I am so genuinely grateful to them both for it.

So now we have come full circle – on the one hand I do not want my children to need to depend on anybody for their own happinness.  And yet on the other, I wouldn’t be pursuing this project without being able to count on mine…

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