COVID Check-In

This is just a little check-in/housekeeping/staying in touch update, nothing too heavy (hopefully). Everyone is feeling the winter this year, myself included, so we’re all in good company.

Shopping

Because of the new COVID variants I have tweaked our service policy a little, and we are no longer able able to sell stuff at the front door. I know this is a bummer, we know everyone is tired of jumping through hoops. The science is constantly updating, but the trend is clear – these new strains are very contagious and if they aren’t taken seriously we will end up in a third wave in April. I know everyone is hoping for things to reopen to in-person shopping in March, but I don’t honestly think that it will be safe for a while.

In the mean-time, here’s what we’re trying to do:

  • We are trying to complete all transactions before you come to the store, and payment in advance is always the safest thing for everybody. If you call your order in we can email you an invoice for your order lickety-split and you can pay securely online.
  • If circumstances determine that you have to pay when you get here you can use a tap card with our little machine through the glass, or we can email you an invoice and you can pay directly from that. We’ll get your information before you come to speed up the transaction when you arrive, but please bundle up if it’s cold out because it isn’t a fast process.
  • If you need to look at something in person you can call us in advance, tell us what you want to eyeball, and we can lay it out in the window for you.
  • I’ve always been niggly about colour accuracy in our photography (although reds and turquoises are always tricky), and we’ve been working on updating the images on the website; Noel is currently shooting and colour correcting the Cascade 220 Superwash (she just finished the 220 Superwash Heathers).
  • Shipping, delivery and pick-ups are still working very smoothly. The same-day pick-ups have been great – our turn-around on orders has been well under an hour, often it’s half-an-hour or less. The courier who does our same-day/next-day delivery has been wonderful and we have been working together to make it even better. Canada Post continues to be reliable, there have been very few bumps since the holidays and when there has been the odd hiccup everything has ended up happily-ever-after.

The Government has been talking about reopening non-essential stores to in-person shopping, but as long as I feel it is unsafe I’m not going to do that. I know it may be an unpopular choice, but I won’t put anyone at risk. There is a Jewish adage: “To save a life is to save a world.” This pandemic isn’t over, and even without a third wave the epidemiology is still predicting another eleven-hundred COVID deaths in Ontario over the next two and a half months. For now, shopping online is a very small price to pay for life.

Inventory Disruptions

International shipping has also been disrupted by the pandemic … I actually wrote a whole paragraph about it, but then thought better of putting you to sleep with shipping-container drama (if people were interested in international shipping logistics there would be reality TV shows about it). Basically, everything is a bit of a hot mess, and I’m grateful I don’t work in that industry.

Inventory has been very sticky during COVID, for many reasons. Many lovely yarns are milled in South America, especially Peru, which has been badly affected by the pandemic. The mills there have been running at 30% capacity since March of last year, so subsequently all of the yarn companies orders are delayed and thinned out.

Everyone in the yarn industry has been working really hard, trying their best to get you the products you want as soon as they can lay their hands on them. We’ve all been getting extremely bendy as we flex and jump through hoops and over hurdles (some of them on fire).

Growth

This is very off-topic, but I’ve noticed lately that A LOT of you are struggling with growth. This isn’t a shocker, periods of disruption often trigger periods of growth. Growth is AWESOME, it’s the goal, and you DO NOT want to stay stuck in one place and not grow, it’s a horrible way to live. But ‘growth periods’ can be stressful, destabilizing, and can make life not so much fun for you or the people around you.

Growth Period Symptoms (you may be in a growth period if):

  • Your body feels weak or achy, but you aren’t sick
  • You’re feeling grumpy, impatient, angry, or irritable
  • You’re blaming other people (‘WTF, what is *with* everyone?! What are they so incompetent?!”)
  • Feeling defensive, explaining yourself, feeling the need to prove yourself (Note: you’ll want to send long, angry emails – DO NOT PRESS SEND!)

Some people resist and avoid growth because of the discomfort, but that’s really the opposite of what you want to do. If you’re in a growth period it’s because you are ready to grow, it’s your time and opportunity to level-up. You need your growth, you’ve earned your growth, you deserve your growth, and once you’re through it you are going to be sooooo much happier! What you want to do is lean into your growth and ease yourself through your growth period with as much ease, grace and joy as you can muster. Think of leaning-in as chicken soup for your growth period.

How To Heal a Growth Period:

  • Stop analyzing and/or blaming. You’re creating more negative energy, you need to put it in check.
  • Stop talking about what you think your problem is. You’re spreading pain around to others, and besides hurting other people, it’s going to wreck havoc in your life.
  • Admit and accept that you’re in a growth period. Own your growth period, be open and ok with it, let the people around you know you’re having a bad day (or week) and are feeling irritable. Acceptance will help you get back to a neutral place.
  • Engage in gratitude and amusement. Apologize to anyone who was in the the path of the storm. Feeling negative? Stop and write down 20 things your’e grateful for, charge up your positive energy.
  • Focus on healing yourself. I’ve read that ‘running your energy‘ is an ideal type of meditation for a growth period, but any kind of healing you are comfortable with is always good.

These aren’t my insights, they come from Jeffrey Allen, who deserves much credit for his remarkable work. Ok, some insights are mine, but the core concepts and directions are pure Allen.

Last Thoughts

Don’t let a scarcity mentality wear you down, we live in an unprecedented place in the history of humanity. We are so fortunate to live in such profound abundance – even in a period of disruption we have access to so much, it’s really an embarrassment of riches. I have heard that gratitude creates abundance, but I wonder if we are also already swimming in abundance and the practice of gratitude opens our eyes to what has always been surrounding us?

P.S.

My current binge-worthy TV picks are Ted Lasso, The Morning Show and Oprah Winfrey’s Conversations on Caste on Apple TV+. Upload on Prime Video was ok, so is Wanda Vision on Disney+ – but I like a good Marvel super-hero action movie.

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