Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Selling All Occasion Cards, Wrapping Paper and Ribbon, Our First Job

Proverbs 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, And when he is old he will not depart from it. (We learned about working but no one in the family had a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus – that time was yet to come)

It was brisk in the autumn winds. My sister and I pull our wagon loaded with cards, wrapping paper and ribbons down the street amidst the swirl of colorful leaves; red maple, rusty oak, pretty elm yellows surrounding us and sometimes smacking us in our faces.

We go to our neighbors and then a few blocks beyond. On weekends Dad takes us to other neighborhoods we have known. Back to the house where Colette and I were born, we knew everyone. Over to my grandma and grandpa’s area where we had lived while our house was being built. We were twelve and ten with our little note pad for orders and our change bag for those who bought from the wagon.

This is the wagon that I pull Colette to school in. She had polio the year before the big epidemic in 1952 and is left with a limp and legs which don’t always do whats she wanted them to. She might have to sit down on top of the boxes of cards but we have a business to be proud of.

We end up selling over $400 worth of cards and other items available from this company which netted us $100 in profits. Yes, we did this for several years and had repeat customers.

And poor Dad, he doesn’t get paid for his time or gas money but I think he is using this to teach his two young girls some valuable lessons. Yes, there are a few rude people but most are gracious and listened to our brave little voices telling the potential customers what we are doing. Many invited us in so they can  look at an example of our items for sale. That give us a break from the Minnesota weather and a chance to warm our cheeks and hands for a time.

Did either of us excel at sales in later years? Nope. But this was a great first job. The thing which made it the best are the people we talked to and who bought from us, also the company which has such great cards and other items to sell. The very best is having a Dad who cared and is taking time to help us even though he already worked six days a week at his paying job. He is spending evenings and Sunday building the home we have moved into. We have “carpenter’s floors” (plywood only) for years before we can afford to get some tile and an area rug. We have orange crate cupboards in the kitchen for four years before he make real cupboards. Yes, the orange crates are painted and have cute curtains to close them from view. Did we feel strange or funny compared to our neighbors who bought their homes finished and ready to move in? No, we know we have hardworking parents who care about what really matters. We are always their special daughters who are taught, encouraged and challenged to do our best by our parents who really did care.
Are they perfect as in “Ward and June Cleaver” – nope, but they try and we all learn and grow through the mistakes.

I loved that first job and my family which made it possible.

(C) Marijo Phelps all rights reserved - use giving proper credit only

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