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December 2010

The Wind Beneath My Wings...

Seeew...have you ever seen that movie, Beaches?'re's in the "book"'s a requirement. Remember how C.C. Bloom (Bette) is getting all of this attention while Hillary (Barbara Hershey) whilts away to heart failure? And remember how like...Hillary watches on while Victoria and C.C. frolic in the sand?  Need a reminder? 

Well...I'm C.C. and our staff (all combined) equal Victoria. My mom (Jan) is "Hill" (don't worry, nobody is dying). If I may have my tangent moment can I ask, has anyone ever noticed in those last moments it's like this...cut to C.C. walking to chair, cut to C.C. giving "Hill" a heart warming smile, cut to the sun about to set, cut back to C.C. as she turns away from "Hill"..and...she's dead. Que horse running on sand for extra dramatic effect. Que sun setting and...funeral. Nothing like sending a tidal wave of emotions to rock your world! Give us a moment to grieve would ya?

Anyway, I would like to introduce to ya'll my "Mothership."  Everything I have learned and continue to learn, I've learned from her. My mom has never been one to be the center of attention. She actually shys away from it and she's fairly quiet. Seeew, it's very rare that I can capture her in a picture.


That's her...the one with the water bottle...that's the wind beneath my wings. The one and only..."mothership"...Jan. I caught her with Melissa Hoffman, one of our fabulous long-arm quilters, on a break during our recent Fig Tree Quilts Weekend with Joanna Figueroa.  Since I love to observe human behavior, I find it fascinating that some people tend to assume the first person they interact with in a shop is the owner. I don't know how many times people have mistaken my mom, for someone else who works here. And of course, to some...I'm just the stock boy. What do I know, right?

While I am playing with all of the quilts (much like C.C. playing with Victoria) and while I frolic with the staff (remember...they are Victoria) as they help and chat it up with mom  makes sure it all keeps happening. Who do you think picks out the furnishings, the decor, the gift collections, those sensuous fabrics, decides which patterns will be made into kits, which samples will be made, and what events we will come up with etc? Certainly not me!  It is very time consuming! You'll usually find me sitting at her side saying things like, "hideous" or "loves it"...and griping about the amount of work that is about to come our way.  And when I have run flat out of is mom....who continues to be the wind beneath my angelic wings and comes up with a completely new idea. "Brian...wouldn't it be nice if we could get a farmhouse built" Look for that at some point in 2011. I think that out of the entire world of retail, a good quilt shop is one of the most labor intensive types of shops to own. But we love to keep it fresh.

Since I do not reveal much about our personal lives on "Boughs of Holly," many of you wouldn't have imagined that in addition to owning three businesses, my mom has recently become a mom my four year old niece, Jenna. This of course, has definitely turned my mom's life upside down in addition to the deteriorating health of her own parents (my grandparents). She literally takes care of everyone. You should see how many times her cell phone rings during a day. I now totally understand why I despise my own cell phone. 

We took Jenna to Disneyland in November! Did you know they now let you build your own Mickey Mouse ears? As she emerged, I'll admit that the veil combined with the sequined ears had me asking, "Is that...Lady Gaga?" My mom better watch out for her teens, she might decide she wants to wear a meat dress! Since she is very fussy (like me) she likes to dress herself and my mom figures it's best to let the child express herself. Even if her style does resemble Cyndi Lauper. As any grandparent knows, part of the joy of grandchildren, is that grandparents typically do not have to raise the children. The children go back home to their parents. I truly don't know how my mom manages it all. Seeew, if we seemed to have slowed down a bit, it's because we've learned that when it comes to family and health, the Shoppe will wait. At least...we tell ourselves that. I'm starting to feel like Rapunzel, trapped in my tower. If I start yearning to see the lanterns that float outside of the Shoppe in the night sky...I need an intervention. Have you all seen Tangled? All I am going to say...those lanterns...they are magical. And the scene in which they are lit for the first time, um...I just feel so moved. It's a very sweet moment and probably one of the "sweetest" Disney movies I have seen in awhile. 

P.S. I've got a little blog give-away going on today and it has to do with this next set of pictures. Mmmk?


Seeew....when we went to Disneyland we stayed at Disney's Grand Californian Resort. Now, we've stayed there before, but this was the first time in the new villas. As you can see we had lots of bathrooms. I'm not kidding. Each of our rooms had three. One of the bathrooms...was in the hallway. THE HALLWAY. My room actually had...a hallway. And the view? It looked directly out onto the phenomenal, "World of Color" show that is presented in the lagoon inside Disney's California Adventure.'s my clue...the bathroom in my was "bigger than the blue banana."  Not kidding. If you can tell me where the phrase, "his bathroom, it's bigger than the Blue Banana" comes from and who says could win one of these....(continued below)


Post your comment to us (Jan & Brian) before the clock strikes 12am on 1/1/11 and you could be the winner!


Here's to inspiration in the new year! ~ Brian & Jan