Friday, June 24, 2011
Posted by LeAnn Stephenson
Right after my fifteenth birthday, my dad strongly suggested I get a summer job. And by "strongly suggested" I mean every morning, while we were at the kitchen table, he'd stare at me for several moments - kinda blankly, but in a "summing-me-up" kinda way, and then shout over his right shoulder, "This kid needs a job!" I'm not completely sure who he was talking to because it was just the two of us in the kitchen, but he had a point. I mean I hadn't taken any steps toward my dream of becoming a millionaire or a rock star, so it was obvious that I needed a little nudge in the career department. My Mom was a vocational director at the high school where she worked and suggested that I enroll in the vocational program at my high school. I did and was placed at a beautiful china shop called The Brownie Shoppe. A lady named Boots (I have no idea what her real name was, this was her nickname) was my manager and I loved her to pieces. She taught me a lot about the world of work and tutored me in the manner in which to conduct myself while at work. Plus, she talked me through some occasional teenage angst and like to take soft-serve yogurt breaks!
So, I tell you all of that to tell you this - this summer I'm doing my best impersonation of Boots. And by that I mean that I have hired my children to help me get the shop ready for opening day and then requested that they continue on as sales staff for the few weeks before they are off to camp at the end of July. I'm not sure if I have given them any valuable information to take with them on to future jobs but I have learned a little something about myself - I have quite a healthy "micro-manager" streak developing - and I'm sure if you were to ask them, they would say that it's actually a fully developed "micro-manager" streak!
So my kids have become my full-time, on-location carpenters slash painters slash electricians slash plumbers slash landscape experts. Needless to say neither one of them had previously done a lot of this kind of work, so there has been quite a bit of on the job training. The other day I was perched on a ladder changing out the gawd-awful florescent lights that came with the space to something a little more attractive when I had this interaction with my kids:
ME: Okay, lets see . . . Oh, it looks like I need a different screwdriver than the one that I brought up here with me . . . could one of you go fetch me a Phillips? The tool box is in the bathroom . . .
NOAH: Right . . . I'll go get it . . .
OLIVIA: . . . (smiles and let's out a sigh and kinda sways from her heels to her toes as she swings her arms out in front of her and then to the back of her)
ME: . . . . . . wait, wait and wait some more . . . .
NOAH: I don't see it anywhere. . . . . . . What IS a Phillips?
OLIVIA: (with a facial expression I'll never forget, like she was amused and tickled and overwhelmed all at the same time said this) You named your screwdriver? . . . . how sweet! . . . . What's the hammer's name?
And after that I got nothin' . . . . except to say that my children and the Hubbs have worked the booties off along side me and I love them to pieces and thank them more than words can say!!
So below are a few photos of my children becoming familiar with the tools of their mother's trade and a glimpse or two into the decor choices for the shop.
Color inspiration photo courtesy Boden
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