Thursday, July 28, 2011

For Every Season Consignment - The Sale, The Family, The Story

Hello my Chatter friends. I have an awesome feature for you all this week. I will start with a question - Who reading this loves a good sale? Good!
Next Question - Who reading this loves fantastic deals, great items and a bunch of smiling faces all at the same time??
Very good!
Last question - Who gets crazy giddy excited when they start to get flyers from a group called “For Every Season.” I mean jump up and down run to their calendars mark the days in permanent marker and gets a sitter for the kids just so you can go?
If you are like me then you are not only raising your hand but you are also jumping up and down squealing and clapping (okay maybe that is just me) but I have to admit I feel like a school girl who just got asked to the prom when this glorious sale comes around. That famous purple postcard comes in the mail with that special saying “For Every Season Fall/Winter Consignment Sale” (or Springs/Summer) and I am in heaven.

I became a fan of “For EverySeason” about 4 years ago when a fellow Mommy friend of mine sent out an e-mail about the sale and that this was where she got all of her kid’s toys and outfits. At the time I had never heard of them before. I loved consignment shopping for the kids but being located in Lake Wylie, I usually had to travel to Pineville to Once Upon a Child. I had been pretty disappointed the last few times I went so I defiantly want to try this sale out since a) they were much closer to my side of town and b) my friend raved about it and she did indeed have some really cool things for her crew of little ones.
The sale I went to was their Holiday sale. As you will read in my interview, they do three sales a year and a holiday is one of them. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I was blown away when I walked in. Everything was labeled, tagged and organized and had a flow to the room. It was busy but not overly crowded. There were plenty of helpers and I not only found stuff for the boys, but also a rug for my foyer, a lamp for my guest room and a really cool purse. I was thrilled.
The next sale I went too was their spring/summer and I brought my Mom along. We both left with bags full of stuff and I couldn’t wait for the fall/winter sale roll around. I think it is safe to say that I have gone to just about every sale since then and seriously plan my schedule around the time of year when they are in full swing. My boys are 5 & 6 now but I still go and find great deals on clothes, shoes and books, especially since my oldest loves to read and I am always looking for books or puzzles that he hasn’t read in school or hasn’t seen yet. I still swing by the toy aisle and pick up a few things. Last year success was a Buzz Light-year dressed in the USA colors and was a “Special Edition” in the store a few months prior. Retail value was $49.99. I paid $8.00 and it was still in great condition. Ryan still plays with him today.
I will always love that Buzz guy and For Every Season for having a sale that helps Mom’s and families out with offering things we all need and use but at fantastic deals and great conditions.
I contacted Lisa last year just after their fall sale and hope they would be willing to be a feature on Lakeside Chatter. She was happy to do so and I am honored and so excited to share with you all. One of my favorite things about blogging is when I get to know people who I have always admired from afar and especially when I get to hear their amazing stories. Read more below and get to know this fantastic family owned operation and if you haven’t done so yet get those permanent markers ready for your calendars.

1) How long have you known each other, and how did you all meet?
We are sisters (Lisa is older than Lori by only 14 months.) Also, our parents are instrumental part of our sale in both their work they do for us as well as the encouragement and support that they give us. We share the same core values, but have very different gifts and talents which we have found to be an asset at being in business together. Lori is the retail manager and Lisa is the business manager of For Every Season—it works!

2) How did you all come up with the idea of For Every Season? Where did the name come from? We knew from the very beginning that For Every Season Consignment was going to be more than just a business. Both of us are very mission-minded and needed to make a difference rather than just make a profit. For Every Season is actually part of an Ecclesiastical passage from the Bible: “For Every Season, there is a purpose under heaven.” We hoped that our business could not only be a way for families to clothe their children and equip their homes “for every season,” but that our business would be a blessing to all in each season.

3) How long has For every Season been in Charlotte/Fort Mill?
Our first sale was the Fall & Winter Sale in August 2002 at the Leroy Springs Recreational Complex in Fort Mill. This year’s Fall & Winter Sale (September 1-11) will be held at The Pointe (2266 Deerfield Drive in Fort Mill—I-77, Exit 88--next to Knights Baseball Stadium in the former Bobcats Training Center.

4) How many workers/volunteers are involved?
The success of our Sale would not be possible without our wonderful helpers and consignors! We have over 300 3-hour helper shifts for each sale. Our helpers come to “work” at our sale with all of their enthusiasm, talents, and ideas. At each sale, we have helpers who make great suggestions because they are thinking outside the box. We also really enjoy the friendship connections that our helpers have made with us and each other. We have a group of ladies who met at For Every Season as helpers years ago and now socialize outside of our Sale! That makes us feel great!

5) How many sales per year?
We host three sales per year: Spring & Summer Sale, Fall & Winter Sale, and Home & Holiday Sale. At all three sales, we feature children’s clothing & shoes, baby equipment, maternity items, and toys. At the Home & Holiday Sale, we expand to also include furniture and home d├ęcor, holiday decorations, electronics, appliances. At one Home & Holiday Sale, we even sold a kitchen sink! With the Home & Holiday Sale, no one ever out-grows our Sale! We love that because we enjoy seeing our consignors, helpers, and shoppers at each sale!

6) Most interesting thing you have learned since starting this adventure?
That the old saying “Never mix family with business” is not necessarily true--not saying that we haven’t had disagreements. However, when the mission of the business (to make a positive difference in the lives of families) is shared by all family members in the business (sisters, parents, husbands, and kids,) a family business can be successful. We have had to learn that each of us brings different gifts and talents to the business and we have learned to appreciate those differences. At the launch of our business, we kept asking ourselves, “Why are we doing this?” when we would get tired or frustrated. We sarcastically responded, “It’s for the children.” After the very first sale, we heard back from families thanking us for what For Every Season provided to the Fort Mill/Lake Wylie/Rock Hill/Charlotte area and what a difference it makes to families. The “It’s for the children” statement has quite a different meaning for us now.

7) Most rewarding part of owning your own company/business?
The most rewarding part is working diligently all year (it takes 3-4 months to prepare for each Sale) and then seeing the “fruits of our labor” as the actual on-site Sale time begins—from set-up to drop-off to sale days to pick-up. We are always excited to see our “old” friends as they come to consign or help (or both!) and are thrilled to meet new friends as they join our Sale as first-timers. We love the relationships we have made through this business

8) You are teaming up with Coupon Mama this year, how did that come about?
The savviest “Business Moms” are the ones that know that saving money is the same as making money. Coupon Mama teaches people how to save money in many various ways—from clipping coupons to not over-buying to not blindly follow the Joneses. For Every Season Consignment offers families an opportunity to make money through consignment and then save money buying at up to 75% off retail prices. Our missions interlace perfectly, so it was just natural that we would partner together. Our Facebook Manager, Michelle Taulbee, recognized this opportunity and put us in touch with Coupon Mama. We met with her recently—she is so dynamic and enthusiastic—check out the picture of us at the meeting on our Facebook page. We are thrilled with the prospects of what For Every Season and Coupon Mama can do working together for families in our community!

Any other fun tid bits you would like to share about your Experience since starting For Every Season?
Once we had a shopper who was unfamiliar with our Sale ask if we were a non-profit charity. Our Dad quickly replied, “Well, we are a ‘not-for-much-profit’ business!” Sad, but true—as we do not measure the success of For Every Season by our bottom line, but by the enjoyment and blessings we receive in For Every Season! Our parents are such an important part of our Sale and have been with us since the beginning. When they first offered their help (free help, of course!,) Lori and I wondered what in the world we could give them to do as token work to keep them busy and out of our way. Now we can’t imagine what we would do without their help! We give them their schedules, but remind them that they work 24/7 AND are on call.
It takes months and months of work just to do a 2-week event! Lori and I always smile when someone says to us, “It must be nice to only have to work a few weeks a year!” Well, it must be, but we wouldn’t know! Ha!

I hope you enjoyed reading about For Every Season as much as I have enjoyed getting to know them and feature them on Lakeside Chatter.  Make sure you check out their website and facebook page below.  More than anything though spread the love.  If you are an avid shopper and fan of For Every Season make sure you pass on their information and Chat Up this wonderful sale that I know personally will be one of the first in line.  Sale begins September 7th. 
Thanks so much Lori and Lisa.  You girls are truly amazing!

For Every Season Website 

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Prayers, A Walk and a Rock Star.

I pray a lot.  I always have.  It stared with the book "Are you There God it is Me Margaret"  back when I was 12 and like the main character Margaret, I too prayed for what else -  Boobs!  And okay a boyfriend, and if he was in the mood I also prayed to be as pretty as Lisa what's her name.  You know, there was always a "Lisa or an "Alyssa" or a "Stephanie" or some grogoues name that went with the gorgeous girl you went to school with.
I prayed to be like her.
And as I got older I prayed for my heartbreaks to heal, my parents to let me have a longer curfew and for Jon Bon Jovi to never get married until I was of age and he could chose me.
After college I prayed for a job.  Any job that would allow me to get my own apartment and finally be on my own.
And when I was on my own, I prayed not to screw it up.
And when I did I prayed for forgiveness and another chance.
And then years later, once I became a Mom I prayed about everything...
Please let the baby sleep....Please let my husband grab that night feeding, please tell me I won't be a walking one eyed open zombie for the rest of my life..."
"Please tell me this child asleep on my chest will never get hurt, will never get sick, will always be safe, healthy and always always Happy."
Because Children deserve that.  All children! 
My prayers about children are very specific..."Please help that child." 
Because children don't chose to get sick, they don't chose to have a disease or a missing limb or a bad skin disorder when they can't be allowed out in sunlight.  Kids don't pick this.  It is just life doing what it does best, leaving us with questions with tugs on our hearts and of course prayers. 
I am not extremely religious but I am extreme fan of God and his son Jesus Christ.  I believe in heaven and I believe in the power of faith, of his will and that sometimes we are not in control of what he has planned for us. 
And clearly I believe in the power of prayer. 
And when I see the amazing power this has, I am overwhelmed, I am moved beyond words.  Even if what we pray for isn't exactly how we had hoped it would turn out....  I know eventually whether it is in this life or my afterlife, I will understand why.
So it is then I try to wait and maybe understand a bit differently why kids get sick.  Really sick, or why kid's are taken from us so suddenly.  Because in my book you don't mess with kids.  You just don't.  But my book is different than God's and I trust his over mine any day of the week.
So latley I have had a certian child on my heart.  Okay, a certain family on my heart.  Many of you in this community know the Greenwalt Family.  If not you are about too.....
Meet them here
And if this link doesn't work, go over to my blog roll and click on "Life Love & Laundry" 
Or google Mitochrondial Disease.
Either way you will learn their story, their struggles and what they too are praying for - A Cure.
I am honored, to know this family and beyond humbled by their story.  I care very deeply about helping this little girl fight her "sick"  The sick she didn't ask for or deserve, The sick that found her at only 3 weeks of age.
The sick that is still with her today, almost on her 3rd birthday.
So I ask you wonderful readers for two things, first prayers for this family. 
Second, please visit her "Saving Savannah" facebook page and learn how you can help contribute to a walkathon taking place this October. 
The walk is organized by  United Mitochondrial Disease Foundation -Energy for Life." And their team name is "Saving Savannah" which is a perfect name for this little girl.  She not only rocks her own walk, but rocks the hearts of everyone who has met her, who knows her and who loves her.
Meet Savannah, one of the many many faces of kids facing Mitochondrial disease.
One of the faces you can help. 
And I belive she say's it best in the photo.

Until one is found, I will be praying.  Please join me.


With Love,
Mary

 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Wednesday Chatter's "Chat"

Been a week you guys and I am sorry....  I so envy you Bloggers out there who post daily. Seriously how do you do it?  Especially in the summer?!  My mind seems to have melted right along with everything else lately.  However I can always find stuff to chat about so here we go...

First, I must tribute my beloved "first" baby. 
Bruno passed away this past Friday after almost 8 wonderful years as our pet.  We got him when he was only 8 weeks old.  He was the most perfect animal to have in my life.  He was big and sweet and gentle as a baby and loved anyone he met. 
Most of you know Bruno's medical history and our story.  If not and would like to, here is a post I wrote about him back in January where we were told there was nothing more we could do for him except keep him comfortable.  Bruno's Story.
I miss him terribly, but I know he is in my heart, that is about all I can say for now.  You dog owners/lovers know what I mean. 

So on to something so super cheerful and DELICIOUS!!!  Check out what the Cupcake Girl has going on.  I am so excited to see her and "Thoughtful Creations" team up and offer yet another fab giveaway and gift basket.  Click here to read all about the Cupcake Drop.  Too awesome.  Also, know of someone who has a wedding coming up?  Cupcake girl also says's "I Do" to weddings.  Oh "Mi Amore"

Mom Togging!!
I would love to share your July 4th Pictures with my readers.  Have a favorite photo you took over the holiday??  Send it to me at lakesidechatter@gmail.com and I will add to the photo gallery coming up in the next post.  I will get us started....

This is my neighbor's daughter, she just happened to turn away from me while playing with that peace sign necklace.  I couldn't resist the combination of youth, peace and the red white and blue colors.  I love when pictures take on a life of their own.  So send what you got.   Photo's can be of anyone, anything, any time of day.  If it is Patriotic, red white and Blue, Fireworks, even hot dogs then send it on.  Can't wait to see them and share.  Make sure you include your name and any info about the photo you would like to share. 

Speaking of Togging.... Must share my new favorite site.  Paint The Moon.  Okay so if you are a togger and new to Photoshop (or even a pro) at photoshop I highly recommend you check this out.  Annie has 100's of unique textures and actions you can download for Photshop, and Photoshop Elements.  I am in love with this chic and her talent for creativity and design.  She has made me like Photoshop (I have had a long time fear of this application and even now learning it sometimes still feels like Greek to me). But she takes a lot of the time and confusion out of editing and comes up with so many wonderful unique actions.  She even responds to e-mails (people she is FAMOUS) so I was so excited when I e-mailed and said "Hi I am a dork and no NOTHING about photshop" and she got back to me very quickly and said "No you are not a dork, try this and try that and e-mail me if you need any help."  And boom.  Instant fan for life.  Take a peek at her stuff,her prices are very very good. she has freebies you can try out and I think you will love her as much as I do. 

Organizing Tip of the Week.

Rubber Band ID
A guest's wineglass won't end up in the wrong hands when one of these brightly colored name tags identifies it.
Thank you Carolina Neat Freak for this tip.  To see more and learn about how a professional Organizer can help you declutter your life check her out at Carolina Neat freak.


New at SUGAR CREEK GARDEN CENTER:
Xeriscaping!


Xeriscaping is landscaping in a way that reduces or eliminates the need for irrigating.

On Saturday, July 23 at 10AM We will be featuring a class on xeriscaping and how you can make your landscape both beautiful and less dependent on irrigation!
For more Information on this event click here : Sugar Creek Garden Center.
Okay my peeps, that is it for now....  I will have more coming by this weekend.  Hugs to you and please keep the comments coming and share the love on Facebook as well.  I couldn't do any of this without you!!


Much Love,
Mary

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

My "No Holds Barred" Take on Casey Anthony.

I wasn't planning on it, but something told me to write anyways...

Via Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/pin/56919950/

This feels personal!
Scratch that. This feels utterly disgusting! And maybe I wouldn't be so riled up if we haven't just come off a Holiday weekend celebrating our country' freedom. Because, quite honestly, our American Justice system has let me down, big time. Say what you want about the evidence or lack there of, say what you want about reasonable doubt and yeah the family was dysfunctional and yeah there was no “clear” understanding of how this poor child died... And everyone is going to have an opinion about everything and that is just the way things are....
But don't tell me "Not Guilty."
Because there is no doubt in my mind that she anything- BUT guilty! She was her MOTHER people. The one woman Caylee could trust, depend on and knew would keep her safe. And if she didn't end Caylee's life on purpose if it was an accident of some kind she is still GUILTY. Because she partied and she smiled and she danced and she made out with guys and drank cocktails.  She went shopping and she lied and lied and lied again. And oh yeah the Tattoo the freaking TATTOO "Beautiful Life" it reads.....  "MONSTER" it should read.
She never, ever grieved!
She only cried in court when it was about "her" and not her daughter.
She is mean she is cut throat and she is-
Free... To do what she wants. To have another baby to get away with something so horrific and she will be able to probably write a book about it... Reality TV shows because that is how it rolls.... The more awful you are, the more attention you will get.
It is disgusting!
And what about the child abuse charges?? She is not guilty of that as well? Really?!? Your child is missing for 31 one days and you don't report it? If that is not abuse I don't know what is.
I don't know much about much. But I know that when you become a mother it is no longer about you it is about them. It will forever be about them. I have to confess here….  I actually  have more respect for Cindy Anthony for still calling Casey "Sweetheart" on the jail cell phone during their talk’s right after Casey was arrested.  Because, honestly, that is what mother's do. Cindy's daughter was in jail no one knew what happened yet, Casey kept lying and spinning more webs of pain and Cindy still said "I love you sweetheart." Because to Cindy it was about Casey. Her daughter was in jail and scared and Monster or not, unconditional love is what it is. And that I get. I get that families are screwed up and upside down and no one is perfect and bad things happen.... But your child is your child and will always be "sweetheart" to your mother.
Unless you have no heart, then you are nothing and nothing will eventually catch up with you. Even if 12 men and women handed you nothing but the ability to go free, and therefore nothing has changed. The dust will settle, injustice will forever linger and a three year old little girl will never laugh or sing or swim or dance or even become old enough to and enjoy her own beautiful life.
I don't get it.
And I never will. That is why this is personal. My pack, my people, my fellows Mothers there is one amongst us who broke every rule in the book. Who failed their child and danced anyway.
Land of the free? Clearly!!!! 
This just feels wrong.
And wrong wasn’t supposed to be how Caylee’s life ended. 
She deserved better, she deserved our help... Her justice was due.
I just don't get it.... 
Do you?