So we are 50/50 at the moment. Half recovering from the incredibly busy November and December and thanking God everyday that we aren't inundated with parcels but half missing all the personalised gifts arriving, being wrapped and dispatched out of the door! I was gift wrapping a Christmas bauble this morning and almost felt like I was missing Christmas!!
But onwards and upwards and I am really looking forward to see what 2017 will bring. I have new product ideas, am lining up a few new suppliers and we will be continuing to work really closely with our customers to ensure we help them treasure each one of the special events and occasions they have coming up in the year ahead.
And yet, what of 2016? What a blast that was! Our first full year in operation and in all areas the business just grew and grew and GREW! There are so many highlights and favourites but I thought I'd just share a few.
This commission of a shirt and cushion for a little baby boy who would never meet his Grandpa really touched my heart. The items themselves were utterly gorgeous but to know they would both help connect little Rowan with his Mummy's Daddy was so important and we were honoured to rush both gifts through for Christmas on behalf of his Grandma.
Personalised Fingerprint Trees or Bears are always super special to create and we love to hear back from customers about how they went down at the party or event. This paraglider was created for a special customer who's brother was doing his first jump to celebrate his 30th birthday! Even the dogs signed it! It's now proudly on display in the hallway. Drop us a line if you have an idea you want us to explore!
2016's best seller! Official! This Memorial Bauble,
brand new in stock last Christmas was our best selling item last year. It is so lovely for us to carefully choose and item and then see it so well received and loved so much, so many customers go on to cherish it.
Everything about this image melts my heart. From the gorgeous Memory Cushion made from her beloved Mum's nightie to the smile of contentment on Sarah's face. From the way she is still holding the ribbon from the gift wrap to the fact that this was a gift from a friend who didn't know any other way to help her through her grief. I am sure, but I still hope, that Sarah feels close to her Mum.
I am actually proud of the fact that my three kids can clearly what hard work looks like, every single day. They know to be quiet on the phone when I'm talking to customers, they carry parcels to the Post Office and chat away about our deliveries, they know what to do with parcels when couriers collect or deliver and they love the face that they feel part of our business (Zac, 9, has already told me if he doesn't make it as a footballer he will be taking over...coz I'll have passed away by then!) This was my Anya, caught in the act adding more packing tape to a rather large box. How could I be cross with that face and her "helping"?!
But my absolute favourite of 2016 has to be this! I loved hearing that Muriel was thrilled having all her family and friends celebrate her 100th birthday by putting their fingerprints on her Fingerprint Tree. I miss my Granma so so much and she would have been 99 next month. Seeing Muriel placing her own fingerprint, with the Queen's card next to her and a huge smile on her face was honestly such a Wow moment of 2016!
The Lovely Keepsake Company was conceived in Hull Royal's Neo-natal Intensive Care and here the kids are on one of their regular visits, this time celebrating their 3rd birthday in May 2016, with a cheque for our fundraising. So pleased we can continue to raise funds for such an important place in our hearts through this business. Thank you to everyone who ticked YES to donate.
I am so unbelievably humbled and privileged to have been allowed into so many people's lives and stories in 2016. This is the best job in the world and I look forward to many more memories and keepsakes in 2017.