Another Thanksgiving has come and gone; another Black Friday under my belt, too! Let’s begin this entry by recalling about a week ago (last Sunday/Monday). That was when I learned that our kiosk/cart would be coming very soon. I thought for sure I would be at work when it arrived. I was not, but I did walk around the mall and find it sitting right where I thought it would be — very close to Santa’s house!
By the time Mom and I arrived downstairs, I saw Thayne and his friend Dick setting it up. I was so happy! “Finally I can see what it looks like!” I almost shouted when I walked up to Thayne and Dick. Thayne gave me a warm smile and hug. “Yes, you do!” “So where are the directions? Have you found the directions yet?” I asked while leaning on the counter trying not to bounce up and down. “Not yet!” Dick calmly replied. Then I introduced Mom to Dick and Thayne had already given her a hug. Dick smiled warmly and greeted Mom with a hug and said, “Hi, Mom!” I laughed, but continued talking to Thayne as Mom and Dick conversed.
“You’re going to help me put this together! You’re going to be the first person to work this cart!” I beamed. “Really?!” Thayne smiled and nodded approvingly. “Yes, really.” “Oh my gosh! I can’t wait! I mean Nicole told me I’d be the first non-manager/owner working it, but I never thought…” I couldn’t finish my sentence; my voice trailed off. I was so excited. “That’s amazing!” That’s all I could finally say.
Mom and I left the mall and I still was super excited! I couldn’t wait to start helping. The following day was my first day working with Thayne on the cart. It was time to start learning about the inner workings of this cart. I spent most of my shift learning how the pieces all fit together, put together the bubblers (or lemonade holders), and making sure all the trays fit together, etc. I was having fun! It’s not every day I get to make something at work.
“There’s much more work I’m going to have you do to finish setting up the cart,” Thayne told me via text message. “Call me when you get to work today.” It was one day before Thanksgiving and I had been assigned to work a seven hour shift. Most of that shift I spent working on the cart. I made strawberry lemonade, regular lemonade, stocked the mini fridge, labeled the subsections, found labels for the trays, put the trays in the cookie cabinet, assigned a receipt printer, and so much more. My poor legs were exhausted and I was about to collapse due to my hard work, but I wouldn’t give up! Thayne left me in charge of this cart and I was not about to let him down! This is my cart and I am going to make this work! I will make Thayne proud that I pulled this off all on my own! I kept chanting over and over again to myself. I even managed to get the doors back on the cabinet (they had fallen off the day before).
I called and texted Thayne a total of at least 7 or 8 times that day alone! I am sure after a while he was going to get tired of hearing from me, but I needed his input and we were doing this together — even though he was in Derby and I was up here in Overland Park. I know I made him proud! We did this! Together! At last it was finished and ready for Black Friday. I left feeling very proud and accomplished!
Thanksgiving came and I could definitely say I had a lot to say that I’m thankful for this year! 🙂 ❤ I guess I should start by saying I’m thankful for the fact I was able to give back to Thayne by offering my talents of being mechanically inclined and ability to work hard physically. I finally could show my gratitude for him never giving up on me! I’m also thankful for still having a roof over my head and someone to come home to that always cares about me no matter how many times I’ve failed him (Steven). I’m also thankful for a mom who wants to show me how to make some awesome food according to family recipes. I’m thankful I can still walk, see, and talk. I’m thankful for the opportunity to now be able to teach, instruct, and help others learn recipes for work (e.g., how to properly make a Dulce Split Dazzler or whipped cream according to our Haagen-Dazs recipes). I’m also thankful for still having a job even if a lot of days I come home and complain about customers and their complaints about our prices. Lastly, I’m thankful for the opportunity to grow in my faith again; I have been growing by leaps and bounds after learning about online devotionals from Thayne. Lastly, I’m thankful for all of you fellow travelers on the road of life with me. Without you, this blog wouldn’t have been possible and I probably would’ve abandoned it multiple times if it was for you and all the people who once they learn about it keep coming back or have subscribed. I feel very loved and touched to know so many of you enjoy this blog and reading about my journey; I hope we can continue this one for a very long time! Feel free to tell your friends and family about it, too. ❤ 😀
Now Black Friday started very early for me this year; in fact, I couldn’t even sleep Thanksgiving night. I last looked at the clock (even though it was a bit fuzzy) and read it was 10:35 p.m. I hadn’t even been able to doze off for five minutes. I think I fell asleep somewhere between 11:00 and 11:30 p.m. I woke up briefly at 2:00 a.m. and took some medicine and fell back asleep for an hour and a half before waking up and quickly turning off the alarm so it wouldn’t wake Mom (I slept with her that night so I could just get into the master bathroom and change clothes, have breakfast, and sneak out the front door). I quickly and quietly changed into my work clothes and then turned on the dinning room light and dimmed it very quickly to have my breakfast: about 1/2 a cup of fruit, 1/4 cup of nuts, 1/4 cup of cubed cheese, a Greek yogurt, and an energy drink. I left a couple of notes for Mom and Steven, brushed my teeth, pulled on my hoodie, out the door I crept to my car, and was off to the mall by 4:30 a.m. I arrived at the mall at roughly 4:45 and made it to the parking garage where other mall workers were arriving. A security officer greeted each of us, “Where are you stationed today?” he said with a smile. For whatever reason, I couldn’t say anything, but held up my hat that read: Haagen-Dazs. “Ah, ice cream and cookies! Okay.” “Well, I’m working at our other location — by Santa — so if you want any cookies, you can come visit me!” I said beaming with pride.
I had a few quirks and mishaps on the cart that morning, but it was nothing I couldn’t handle. By “afternoon” (roughly 9:45 a.m.) things were calmer (as far as Black Fridays go) and I managed to get my kinks worked out and the quirks were mostly gone by 11:00 a.m. I was told by 2:00 p.m. things were set and everyone was happy. I was home and enjoying Mom and Steven’s company by that time. I believe I fell asleep by about 9:45 or 10:00 that evening and slept until almost 5 or 6 Saturday morning.
So as you can see from all these photos from Black Friday, it was a rather interesting morning/day. I had fun and was glad when my shift was over so I could just collapse. I keep telling myself that one of these days I will get out of retail and when I do I am never shopping on Black Friday because I know first hand how hard and difficult it is. I also know just how insane it is to waste a perfectly good night’s sleep just to save a few extra dollars here and there. It’s not worth it at all. I mean just the day before you’re giving thanks for all that you have and then within hours you’re out there pummeling others and shouting at them to get the best deal and make it so they can’t get the item they covet. It’s just not very Christian-like and not worth it at all!
By the way, I took a few videos of Black Friday, but I’m not sure they’re anything that great to look at or listen to, so I may or may not upload them eventually. We’ll see; maybe in a few days I’ll upload them and reflect solely on Black Friday, but don’t hold your breath on it. 😉
Well, guess that about wraps up my week leading up to and concluding with Black Friday. It was an interesting week and bound to be an interesting retail, holiday season. Time will only tell how much more excitement will be had, but you can be sure this much, I’ll catch every bit of it on my phone and report back here on my blog for all of you to enjoy. 😀
Love and prayers, as always! ❤