Good Morning from rainy, but warm Atlanta. We arrived early Monday evening after an uneventful and lovely flight. The weather was balmy, but no rain falling, and the path to the hotel easy to navigate via the Marta, Atlanta's subway system.
Tuesday morning bright and early we headed out to the corner bakery, had our coffee, and cheesy grits for me ~ my southern roots showing, and set out for the show. There are six of us this trip. Michelle, Marlea, Lucia, myself, my friend Melissa from Every Bloomin' Thing in Susanville and her mom, Linda. We have all traveled together before, to the International Gift Show in San Francisco last year, so it feels like a lovely reunion. Nothing can really prepare you for the magnitude of the Atlanta show. Melissa and I had done this show together two years ago by ourselves and we felt like we had seen only a third of the almost 60 floors of showrooms. So this year we came armed with assistance, better shoes, and the frame of mind needed to try and see it all. The first day we spent making appointments at the Christmas showrooms that we want to see later in the week, and walking the first four floors of holiday merchandise. There is a large benefit to ordering for next years holidays when this years have just passed. Everything is fresh in your mind and you don't tend to get "caught up in the moment" of ordering quite as much. You can take your time and remember the requests you have heard from shoppers all season, "Can you please look for some truly Victorian ornaments and carolers?" to "Please look for more ballerinas for next year", and from my young mom's group "We need ornaments that not only say Baby's 1st, but also the year".
We made it out of the Christmas floors in time to get some lunch, and then start on some general gift ideas. We looked for books, we shopped up and down the aisles for new silk flowers, baby wear, hats, jewelry, lotions and dishes ~ a little bit of everything. I tend to be a "just looker" the first couple of days. While it makes it a little harder, especially for your feet, to go back and place orders later, I tend to get a much better feel for what is out there and what will work for our store. Of course that did not stop me from placing an immediate order with a new company for us called "The Natural Life". The had wonderful clothes, hats and baby gift items and we have wanted to carry them for quite a while. Plus, my grandson Cash is always in need of a new adorable outfit. We rounded out the evening with an amazing dinner at "Aunt Pitty Pats" an Atlanta institution, and got our fill of collard greens, blackened grouper, fried green tomatoes, black eyed peas, BBQ ribs, and the best sweet pototoes we have ever had.
We are sitting downstairs in our lovely hotel right now. Having our coffee and downloading the 102 pictures that I took yesterday. Haven't seen much of Atlanta yet, but we have plans for the Aquarium on Friday, and antique/thrift shopping in Rosswell at some point. You know what they say about all work and no play. And we don't do dull!
To be continued.....Have a great day, Susan