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    Sunday, March 18, 2007

    One Of Hundreds

    Sorry for not posting yesterday, I was exhausted beyond words. We stayed up until 5am Saturday morning, napped until 8:30am then got ready to go the rest of the way. By 10am we were on the square in Springfield, Mo, setting up the booth. This was our first time with the screen room, and that was an adventure in itself with the high winds (sandbags and stake line marker flags next time). We stayed at the square until about 4:30pm, when we headed home to unpack the business goodies and pack up the stuff to give away at theFreecycle(tm) Free-For-All, where we stayed for three hours chatting before we realized what time it was, grabbed some soft tacos for the girls and my mother and drove the girls to spend the night over at grandma's. From there, a friend took us out to eat at the newly-reopened Chinese restaurant that had burned down last year, we dropped him off at home, and went home ourselves to do some arts & crafts. After painting some terribly enticing paper buttons (they said 'free candy') and pinning them to both the front and backs of our coats, we were off again to try and sell "hangover candy" to the revelers at the downtown pub crawl. We didn't sell anything, but we gave away quite a few samples, so hopefully folks'll be looking for us next year. *grin* We got home and crashed hard at 15 after midnight, and woke up, still exhausted at 11am.

    It didn't snow on St. Patrick's Day, it sleeted. softly. Lightweight tiny hail-bits cascaded down from the sky at semi-regular intervals while my fingers froze to their core because I forgot my painting gloves. *chuckle* Amazingly, the day (and profits) were better than last year, when it rained for half of the day, but was somewhat warmer. The events were grand, with the square filled nearly to the brim with vendors, contests, rides and fun. I didn't get to see the girls in the parade because I was swamped with customers who were anxious to get decorated.

    The Springfield Brewing Company let all of their waitstaff and bartenders off of work for a time during the parade festivities for the express purpose of coming to me to get "the coolest shamrock ever" painted on their faces, and that was a huge ego boost if I do say so myself. *grin* The photo above is of one of the great many happy faces I helped to create on the 17th. (likeness used with parental permission, catch of Z in the pic, a complete accident. Hi Z! I can see you!!!)

    We had an absolute blast, even if we did manage to not take a picture of the booth and setup, or the lovely rainbow & pot o' gold I'd made for the event. We're going to make that a regular thing for the parade from now on, it was a HUGE hit! We didn't sell much blarney this year, but we almost sold out of the lip conditioner, and our "Gaelic Green" Vita-FizZ sold rather well as both a candy and a hangover cure. *wink*

    Having prices on everything and a tip jar proved to be a very wise move, as we ended up with quite a surprising amount (though anything beyond the marked prices would have surprised me) in tips alone from our happy customers. We learned that we need to have a rope line to corral the customers for face painting so they don't block the product displays, but that is a lesson learned, and we'll be sure to implement it as soon as possible.

    I met back up with a lot of old and new friends and acquaintances, which has become one of the expected joys of this particular event. It was great to see how many people were willing to brave the cold for a bit of family fun!

    We're still exhausted and sore all over, but it was a great day of work, and almost too much fun, so it was well worth it, and that's what it's really all about.

    [where: park central square, springfield, MO 65806]

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