Monday, February 6, 2017

I Missed My Calling

I've never been a career person; while I was in college, my major was journalism with an emphasis in advertising, but I didn't end up finishing college and I don't have any regrets about that, actually.  It just wasn't for me, nor was having an established career path - I've had a lot of jobs off and on over the years, but there was never anything that made me want to work at it exclusively or for the long-term.  Plus I wanted to stay home and raise my children, which I did.  It all worked out.

Of all the jobs I've had, I've enjoyed the ones with customer interaction quite a lot.  I know...how can that be, considering that I hate people?  Just kidding, I really don't - but I do enjoy my solitude.  However, I like helping people - my seasonal stints at James Avery were really fun, even with working during the holiday rush.  And while I didn't set out to work at the gift shop when I applied to be a volunteer at the hospital, I've ended up really enjoying my time there as well.  I like helping people choose things to purchase; neither of these jobs had any stress on me as far as commissions, so that's probably an extra bonus to liking them - I wouldn't want to feel like I had the pressure of making sales or the pressure of making someone purchase something...I just want the fun of helping them feel good about whatever they're buying.

I guess my enthusiasm for shopping translates to our gift shop customers, because my co-volunteer, Rosalie, and I end up doing really well on our days there.  What can I say - we like a lot of the stuff we sell, and when someone is interested in it, we can't help but show our love for the product.  Kendall, who is in charge of the gift shop, noticed this a while back and started letting us choose the Fossil items for the shop - purses, wallets, watches, and jewelry.  I can't tell you how neat that is, to sit at the computer and click on all the items we think are cute and put them into our shopping cart - basically we are buying everything we love, without having to spend any money.  A few weeks ago, Rosalie and I placed another Fossil order; as usual, we picked out everything we liked and left the cart for Kendall to review.  We were shocked when she asked us if we submitted the order - she trusted our judgement that much to not even need to see what we'd chosen!  That made us feel really good.

The week after we placed our most recent order, Rosalie was on vacation, but I came in to work to find that several boxes of purses and jewelry had arrived.  Kendall saves all of the Fossil items for us to display, because we seem to do a good job with that as well.  I unwrapped all of the purses and set them out, and within 30 minutes, one of our new totes had sold.  I love it when a customer likes what we picked out - makes me feel like we are on the right track.  Then another tote sold.  Then a purse and a wallet that I'd paired with it for display sold.  I was elated, but sad that Rosalie missed out on all of the fun (although I'm sure she was having fun on her vacation, of course). 

The first thing to sell...this pattern also sold in another style as well.  Kendall reordered everything that sold so quickly, so this is the second set of bags in as many weeks.

So apparently, based on my limited time in the gift shop, I should have been a purchaser for a boutique...and also someone who does displays.  We have a small locked cabinet to showcase the jewelry and watches, and we do the best we can with what we have; while I don't think I could handle doing an entire shop's worth, I can make smaller displays look nice.

Of course, I really don't want a full-time job, so this is all just speculation right now.  But it's interesting to discover a possible career path - one that I never had any idea I'd be good at - and it's also kind of neat to see how opportunities appear when you're just floating along in life.

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Paco update:  He's doing better.  We've been giving him some canned pumpkin, which is supposed to help with stomach issues for dogs, and he loves it.  I was thrilled on Saturday to see that after he lapped up his couple spoonfuls of pumpkin, he went over to his food dish and actually ate some kibble!  He's not eating a lot, but he IS eating, and he's kept everything down for about 48 hours now.  Fingers crossed that he's on the path to getting back to normal.  Thank you, everyone, for all of your concern - I know that Paco the wonder dog is very popular here, and it's nice to know how loved he is.

38 comments:

  1. Our hospital gift shop started selling Fossil items too--coincidence? I think not... I'm with you, I do enjoy working with people but I also don't enjoy it. People have become much more confrontational and that's a challenge for me.

    Glad to hear Paco is on the road to recovery!

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    1. That's pretty funny about your gift shop carrying Fossil, too.

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  2. Glad to hear Paco seems to be starting to feel better! Wonder if dogs get the stomach flu too? Any way I hope he continues to improve.

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    1. I wonder - I guess dogs could get the stomach flu same as people? Interesting thought...

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  3. You definitely missed your calling. I think I would enjoy what you are doing as well. Maybe as my retirement job.

    I knit all afternoon yesterday. Thought of you.

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    1. Love that you knitted and thought of me. Socks??

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  4. I'll have to get your advice on some new display ideas :)

    So glad to hear about Paco!

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  5. I love Fossil purses and wallets. But, I still like a to carry a smaller purse and they are hard to find. How strange that pumpkin is good for a dog's upset stomach. I'm glad to hear Paco is doing better.

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    1. I agree, most of Fossil's purses are on the larger side. We do have some smaller bags but not nearly as many as the bigger ones.

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  6. It does sound like you've missed your calling! But at least you are having fun with purchases and displays now! I would love this as well. :)

    Glad to hear Paco is feeling better!

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    1. I definitely am having fun playing shop, anyway. :)

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  7. It is a good fit for you--you decorate your house tastefully, and NOT over-crowded. Also, you just have good taste :) Do you think your years of working in an art gallery were helpful (I think you worked in an art gallery?)

    So glad to hear about Paco. Hoping that doesn't happen to one of my dogs, but I will remember pumpkin!

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    1. I forgot about working at the Arts Center - yes, there was a gallery there and I got to arrange the little bits in our tiny gift shop! Huh - funny how I forgot about that, but the jewelry that I displayed did really well. Shoot! I really should have done this for a living.

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  8. You're making me want to go visit my hospital gift shop just to see what they have! I think you're correct about your possible career path - maybe you wouldn't mind doing it full time if you actually owned the shop and could set the hours, etc.

    Glad to hear about Paco!

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    1. You totally should pop into your local hospital's gift shop - I can't tell you how many people have wandered around ours saying how amazed they are at the neat stuff we carry.

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  9. This is such an interesting post! I too went to college for Journalism and before that, for Fashion Merchandising. I wanted to do kind of what you do at the gift shop. I ended up managing a clothing store for a while and although I love the excitement of retail (loved shipment days) I wanted something that gave me a better schedule and family life.

    Glad that Paco is doing better. Dogs do love pumpkin for some reason. I have to crush up pumpkin cheerios and put them on top of Baylee's pills for her to eat them. I have 2 boxes left and don't know what i'll do when they are empty since they are only a seasonal item!

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    1. Very interesting how our early paths were similar!

      Paco has been slurping his antibiotic pill from a spoonful of pumpkin - maybe when you run out of Cheerios, you could try that for Baylee?

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    2. My dental hygentist just gave me a recipe for a dog treat that is made with pumpkin so I might try that. I can pass it along to you if you want.

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    3. Yes, I'd love to have that recipe!

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  10. I'm not surprised you'd be good at buying and displaying for a boutique, you always seem to have such good taste from what appears on your blog, and a clear eye for design and colors etc.

    Hope it leads to more opportunities in the future! (And glad Paco is doing better!)

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    1. Thanks - I don't have any big career aspirations, but I do like playing around with stuff like I get to at the gift shop. :)

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  11. "It's also kind of neat to see how opportunities appear when you're just floating along in life."

    Ooh, I needed to hear this today, thanks! I am in a floating along moment and getting really antsy.

    I always like your posts about your work in the hospital. It sounds really tricky, I can't imagine trying to shop for things other people would like; I can barely dress myself :-). I had no idea the gift shops were so swanky, the ones I have visited in the U.K. and Germany only sold dusty packets of nuts and cookies, sad fruit and horrible greeting cards.

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    1. See, that's what I thought hospital gift shops were, too - and when I was offered the gig there, before seeing the shop? I wasn't very excited about it.

      I hope your opportunity appears soon - floating along is OK, but getting antsy makes it harder.

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  12. Glad you are still enjoying the gift shop!!! It sounds like you really do have a knack for ordering and displays for sure!!

    Sooooogald to her you dog-baby is doing a bit better!!!

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  13. Picking that stuff out sounds so fun and you truly have a knack for it! I bet you can't wait to tell Rosalie how fast things are going!

    Yay, I am happy to hear Paco is feeling better!

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    1. I will have a full report for Rosalie on Thursday, LOL!

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  14. That sounds like such a fun gig!!!! And SOOOO glad to read that sweet Paco is on the mend!!!!! Yay!

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    1. Today (Wednesday) - he's looking like his old self again. :)

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  15. Just read the other post and am happy to read Paco is doing better!

    You sure missed your calling if you ask me. Looks like you are doing a great job at the gift shop but more important: you love doing it.

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  16. Pumpkin to the rescue for Paco! That's what I've always used for pup stomach troubles. I'm glad he's starting to eat a little more!

    That's so great that your volunteer gig is so enjoyable, and that they let you do the shopping! I love Fossil, so that would be especially fun. I've always thought that would be a lot of fun, and I really liked doing merchandising when I worked in a department store in college. I sort of fell into my "career path," so I totally understand where you're coming from there. I'm still waiting for inspiration to strike...

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    1. I hope that for those who earn a living (as opposed to my piddly jobs that were for extra help, like when our kids went to college), that you are afforded the opportunity to change direction/careers, if you want. Getting to do what you really love would be so much nicer than just having a job.

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  17. I envy all your free time Shelley! Love that you love what you are doing - I agree if you love something it's easy to transfer that love to another person. Glad Paco is feeling better!

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    1. It's probably a good thing I don't work in a yarn shop - not only would I be enabling other knitters big time, but I'd be bringing home all the yarn as well. :)

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  18. Checking back in on Mr.Paco.
    We love our canines and here we had NO IDEA about the pumpkin and are filing that away just in case...

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    1. Not only do I think it helped, but he LOVES it.

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