“Oh my gosh, my cheeks are killing me. I can’t keep smiling like this anymore. I am exhausted. I need a break. A little break? Okay. Whew!” (Barbie from Toy Story 2 =)
I spent the weekend with my sister at a women’s expo in Utah in a 10×10 booth surrounded by her Sashay wares. I did my very best with smiling and selling and modeling and handing out catalogs and … I think I earned my keep for the weekend, and I liked seeing my sister in action. She was in her element.
I, however, was in … a … different element. My body never knew what time it was, and then we were inside a windowless convention center from sun-up to sun-down for two days. But I had a great time hanging out and catching up and at the end seeing my nephews for a few hours. It’s been 3 years, and it took them a while to remember which aunt I was (I am the oldest of three sisters). But after all of about 5 minutes, I was a member of the family.
I’m going on another trip in a couple of days, but with the whole kit ‘n’ kaboodle … and more. Our Swedish friends arrive tomorrow, and I am cleaning, decorating, shopping, packing, etc. for their arrival. I am so excited; I just hope I don’t pass out from exhaustion when they arrive. I usually just have to clean with company coming. This time our friends are staying with us a couple of nights, so I am planning menus while decorating for Halloween at the same time. But not too much because we leave the morning after trick-or-treating. The 10 of us are getting on the road bright and early for a 13-hour road trip to the Sunshine State.
I’m going on a trip this week! Out of town! On an airplane! All by my lonesome! I’m excited! I’m going to see my little sister, who I haven’t seen in almost three years. Her husband’s job has them out in Arizona while I’m on the other coast in Virginia. A little over a year ago, she discovered a brand new company started out there in Arizona called Sashay Jewelry. She became a consultant while they were still fairly young and has been trying to get me on board to expand their business out this way.
Unfortunately, I am not a salesperson. I don’t like negotiating to buy a new car. I didn’t like haggling with street vendors when we visited Thailand (even though it’s what you are supposed to do). I don’t like all the pressure. I’m just not built to be in sales like my sister is. She loves her product, and you can tell. You want to buy from her. I can’t do that – okay – I’m just not comfortable doing that.
Moving around with the military has made it perfect for spouses like me to have businesses like this one. I have hosted (and bought from) several parties for my friends who sell kitchen items and scrapbooks and jewelry and make-up and children’s books and … I came very close to being a consultant more than once. But I have learned that I like being the hostess. I will support a great cause; just don’t ask me to be the spokesperson.
And that is what this trip is about – helping my sister (plus we get to catch up on sister stuff that we can’t do over the phone). She has a show in Utah this weekend, and she needs someone to go with her. So I’ll help her drive there and set up her display and sit with her at her booth and keep her company while we chat and she sells. I wish it were at my house, then I could bake cookies and make hors d’oeuvres.
But this time, my kitchen will stay clean, and I will hang out with my sister. And I may start my Christmas shopping while I’m there, too: http://www.sashaylaura.com/.
While we lived in Guam, our family saw a Chinese circus perform. I didn’t expect a lot when we bought the tickets, mainly because Guam doesn’t usually attract the big names. But after the first couple of acts, I was thoroughly impressed. These were really great performers, balancing things and people on top of one another and in the most unlikely postions. Their bodies twisted and turned in ways bodies are not meant to be twisted and turned.
Yesterday, when I picked up my oldest son from cross country practice I asked him how his day was, a question I ask everyday. He said it was fine right off the bat but then contracted it by saying that this year is a lot harder than he thought it would be (he’s a high school junior). He’s gotten to the higher maths and sciences and in all honors classes on top of that. And then, there’s a girlfriend in the mix as well. He’s a good student, as evidenced by his honors level, but has to work for it. Some kids can naturally absorb information and ace their tests; I always envied those kids in school. I had to study as well. But now I am glad I was/am that way. I saw what it did to kids like that; they were so smart, they didn’t care about a lot of things because they didn’t have to work for them.
Two weeks into school, my son is realizing summer vacation is over, and he can’t surf the internet or play games or talk to his girlfriend for hours on end each night. He’s got to create a balance. My husband and I feel lucky that he’s got a good work ethic. He cares if he did poorly on an assignment, quiz, or test. It seems to make him work harder. I hope that he continues on that path. I see his younger sister and brother on the same path as well. I relate to my oldest son a lot; I am an oldest child of 3 as well. Until I was an adult, I didn’t realize how much my sisters looked up to me, hopefully in a good way. As much as they quarrel at times, I know that my younger two look up to their brother also. My husband and I stress to him that the actions he takes are being carefully watched by them. Sometimes, I know he doesn’t like that. All the pressure is on him, and I know it doesn’t seem fair. I have to remember that, since I was in his position (not too long ago).
We all have a balancing act of some sort in life. I have 3 children who each play a sport, each are in the band or chorus at school, 2 are in scouts, one is in braces, and then there’s always the occasional hiccup, like a husband who has hip surgery just as the sports season starts.