A Merry Christmas

We made it! All the way through our holiday season, and out the other side.

We’re wishing you some merry and bright days ahead, truly. We’re looking forward to some calm ourselves.

It’s been one crazy holiday season, another one for the books. As always, we’ve had shipments coming in, boxes stacked on top of boxes, and us lost in the maze of shelves and boxes and recycling. The shop door bell has been ringing like crazy, and as someone very short, every time I go out there with the crowds, I feel like I’m about to get lost. What a wonderful thing, to realize that people haven’t forgotten about writing.

I love that what we offer here aren’t just generic gifts or “stuff,” but truly tools that can bring so much meaning into someone’s life. In the midst of all the holiday shopping and crowds at the mall, I like to think that our shop is a bit different.

I love that when people walk through our doors, the things on our shelves are tools and supplies to help people slow down. These are gifts that I honestly hope people will love and use for a lifetime.

I can’t count the number of people who have said getting a fountain pen has encouraged them to take time with their writing, who have reconnected with friends through letter writing, who have begun journals or recording their travels, or who simply just enjoy writing again. Even though a pen can sometimes be seen as a trite gift for a graduate or a boss, I think a quality fountain pen, with a bottle of ink, comes with the ritual and process of filling and thinking and carefully putting words on a page.

But of course, we couldn’t do any of this without our wonder team. I’m mostly in the back with the baby, and it’s sort of a joke that I’m a bit rusty out front whenever people ask really complicated questions, like how much does this pen cost, or do you have any more Leuchtturm dot notebooks. I suppose like all jokes, it’s only funny because it has a grain of truth.

But we really couldn’t do it without the hustle in the back getting orders out and inventory counted, and our front staff, who are keep the shop clean and stocked and looking great, but most importantly, do a pretty amazing job helping people figure out what exactly they’re looking for or need. These guys make everything possible, and we are so thankful for them.

L-R Jon, baby, Sarah, Danielle, Brendan, Micah, Caleb, Derrick (Liz behind camera, Super eating something off the staff table, Chicken lurking in a cardboard box somewhere)

Our busiest day of the year – the last Saturday before Christmas – was even crazier than usual. We had our staff breakfast in the morning, and then in the middle of the day when I was running a load of a laundry in an effort to get things cleaned before we head up to the cottage, Caleb pulled out the hose from the laundry machine and there was a mess everywhere.

Following that, we had Christmas dinner at my in-laws. Last year I was asked if my dish (Hong Kong style curry fishballs) was “for the kids” (two 2-year olds and an infant), so clearly this year I had to bring something a bit more serious.

In any case, it’s Christmas Eve, and we survived another holiday season. We’ll be on our way up to the cottage soon. The shop will be closed December 25th and 26th, but open again on the 27th. However, we’re taking an extra few days, since Caleb will be off preschool, and I can’t wait to see all the snow up there, everything pristine and fresh.

I’ve got big and small plans: hot chocolate, blog posts, thick books and popcorn. Snow shoes, pen cleaning, steaming soup and a wood stove crackling. Caleb got this hilarious moose balaclava thing for Christmas from his grandpa and I can’t wait to watch him bobbing out there in the snow.

Wishing you a merry Christmas, and all the greetings of the season.

7 Comments

  1. Harry

    Merry Christmas to you and your family as well! I am grateful that there are shops such as yours. I agree with you wholeheartedly about fountain pens slowing you down. It was as if I was learning to write all over again when I first “re-discovered” fountain pens. It has slowed me down and I have enjoyed the process. It doesn’t hurt either when someone notices my handwriting and goes out of their way to compliment me. “Me”??? Really, the person whose writing a few years back would have been illegible.?

    • wonderpens

      Merry Christmas to you, too!

      I know just what you mean about learning to write all over again – rather than scribbling quickly, I found myself just naturally slowing down and paying more attention. Sometimes it’s because I’m trying to figure out a nib, but more often it’s because I’m just enjoying the physical process of writing. I’m glad to hear your writing is so nice! I’m still waiting for mine to get a few compliments 😉

  2. Jenn

    Your staff is wonderful, Liz. I’m pretty new to the whole fountain pen thing and every time I’ve visited your store everyone I’ve dealt with has been incredibly warm and friendly. They don’t make me feel stupid for asking stupid questions, haha.

    Hope you guys have a happy new year!

    • wonderpens

      I’m so glad to hear it! But of course not surprised – our staff really is wonderful. They put up with all of my crazy ideas and idiosyncrasies with patience and love, and we really couldn’t do anything without them. Thank you so much for taking the time to write! Happy New year!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *