ash_blackwell: (slummin' it)
[personal profile] ash_blackwell
Some of you locally know most of this, some of you locally don't and almost all of my LD friends have not heard all this, so since I've been nudged by a couple people and have computer time at work today I’m going to try to give a highlights update since my last one almost a year ago… (I’m a bad girl, I know).

Just after I posted last about being really interested in a guy who was interested in me, but both of us having killer schedules, we decided that we’d likely never have better schedules, so to hell with it and we started dating anyways. With this one- unlike the last one- I think I chose well and we’re still dating and still very happy with our personal life. His name is Dave “Hat” H. (He does not like his last name, so I’ll only give the initial…) He co-owns the game store I’ve been frequenting for the last couple of years with his brother Jeremy, and while he is younger than me, most people don’t notice… Hell, most people who don’t know us well think we’re happily /married/, not just dating… (If I had a dime for each time I heard “I spoke to your husband…” or Dave heard “Your wife…” we’d have a nice little nestegg… ) [grynne]

First few months of this year was dominated with more Target nonsense that at the time pissed me off but really isn’t worth detailing now; and hanging out at Hat’s Games. Then Bildor- the orders manager at Hat’s Games- died in March. I volunteered to take some of the hours he had worked to give Dave a break. I stayed a cashier for maybe 6 weeks. Dave had taken over the orders once Bildor no longer could do them, but he’s not very good at bookkeeping when it comes to working with floating cash (and when it comes to a store this size, that’s about /all/ you are working with…) so I’m now working as the business manager and bookkeeper at the game shop and we’re almost to the point where I can tell Target “stuff it” and quit. We have a few more months before the store can afford to pay our health insurance and can cover all my bills, but with all the nonsense that Target /still/ is doing (“You get paid too much, I can only give you 30 hours a week”), you had better believe I’m counting the weeks… Even more thrilling for me is the fact I’ve managed to increase the orders budget 4 fold while taking a paycheque out.

The last few months have been the highest grossing the business has seen in all three years it’s been open with the exception of last December. Dave and I make a good team when it comes to the store as well as our private lives. He knows what we need to have on the shelf when we have to cut the orders and I’m good at working the money so he doesn’t have to cut the orders as often and prioritizing the distributors to stretch what money we do have. Neither one of us could have built the store up on our own, but together the results speak for themselves.

The only downside to all of this is currently I’m working roughly 90 hours a week (30-33 at Target, 55 at Hat’s and 3 1/2 hours at Charlie’s Comics still (which since Hat and Charlie are good friends, thankfully is /not/ a conflict of interest.)) Granted, since the game store has couches in the back for the Role Playing games anyways, Dave and I can take turns snatching naps, but I will be so happy when I can go back to a crash at 2 or 3 in the morning, get up at 10am and get all my sleep in one chunk while getting to join a couple of the after–hours RPG groups, and get to see the occasional late night showing of a movie (after 10pm when the store closes on the weekdays). Never seeing more than 4 to 5 hours of sleep at a time save for my nights off from Target is the biggest thing that’s bugging me right now, since the game store has more than made up the lost pay at Target.

In the middle of all this chaos, my parents have /finally/ left Florida and now live in the house I was watching for them for all this time. Which meant I had to somehow carve out time to move in the middle of all this. My new apartment’s only saving graces are it’s only 1/8 of a mile to the game shop and they let us have all 5 of our babies (Marina has 3 cats, I have 2). Outside of those, the place still reminds me of St. Michael’s in Virginia. The area is trying to clean up, but you can still see the marks left behind from the type of neighborhood it was.

All in all, while I’m still trying to get the last threads tied off from the stuff that’s been bringing me down the last few years, the good /definitely/ is out weighing the bad right now, and I can see the end of track when it comes to the bad.

The future right now holds a new gaming convention next year that I’m running the registration desk for, my second trip to the GAMA trade show (which is the closest Dave and I get to a vacation… It’s a working vacation, but it’s also the two of us in Vegas for a week looking at all the new toys…er… games that are coming out for the next year), a new employee sometime in the next 6 months (we gotta have ’em by GAMA) so the concept of “day off” can come back to Dave and mine’s vocabulary and the warmth of the store’s “family” growing day by day. The work may be hard, and the pay may not be quite enough to be “legal” if it was hourly yet, but from where I’m sitting my life looks real good to me.

For those who haven't seen me for a while:

Dragon's Horde 2006 (22 Oct 2006):

Dave and I (I'm not as fond of this picture of /me/ but it's a good shot of Dave who's as camera shy as I am) at Bildor's wake 17 Mar 07:

Date: 2007-10-08 02:15 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Way cool. Glad things are going so well.

Date: 2007-10-08 05:10 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
A day off is a very good thing. :) Now if my schedule eases up a bit and [ profile] matterntm injury heals up we can think about doing something fun once in a while.

Date: 2007-10-08 05:45 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Wow... you're alive! I'm glad you a live and sound like things are starting to get on track. Wierd that your parents have moved. I know Kenton will flip pver that.

I know that dress!

Date: 2007-10-09 01:26 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Love to see you're still wearing the green Italian. Dave's cute. Hope things continue to work out for you. Patrick would love to run a game store someday, but it's no way to support a family. Maybe when the kids are grown (and i ever start getting paid for my writing . . .)

Date: 2007-10-12 07:40 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile]
Congratulations, Number One! Let me know if you can ever make it out here to Comic-Con (if me and ri haven't escaped to Seattle by then).


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