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Saturday, November 20, 2010

Cathedral City Sand Lot (Nov 20th - Dec 23rd), 2010

Since we cannot make it home for the holidays, Mike ran across an ad looking for a couple with an RV to sell Christmas trees.  It was free camping and we would receive 15% of the sales.  We decided two reasons that we would do this:  1) Give Jason some work and earnings; and 2) with our portion of the earnings we would purchase airline tickets for Kelsey and Shaun to fly out and spend Christmas with us.   Plus since it was a happy season of the year, the people would be in a good mood to deal with.  Our inventory would be around 400 trees, plus stands, wreaths etc.  So we arrived on Nov 20th to our designated sand lot.  We received water and electric from a neighboring house; and a large tent would be set up with a giant snowman and a pay booth.  However, the trailer of goods got broken into while being stored elsewhere so the set up could not be completed this date.  However, the actual trees would not be arriving until Thanksgiving Day so we had a few days yet.  Woody (our boss) didn't seem too upset about the setback so hopefully this isn't a bad note to start on our new adventure.
We concluded our season with some very nice balmy weather and all 410 trees were sold and a couple donated by December 23rd.  It was much more work then we thought it would be.   The lot had to be set up, the trees unloaded and inventoried when they were delivered (2 separate deliveries); Mike had to do all the electricity for lighting, drill, saw, snowman, etc.  We were open 9 to 9 seven days per week.  Doesn't mean we were busy all day waiting on customers, but someone had to be there all during the open hours -- better to have 2 people there all the time.  Each tree sold had to be netted (at customers wish); and every tree had to have a fresh cut and then loaded or tied to the customer's vehicle.  Trees ranged from 5 ft to 15 foot and at times were very heavy to put up in stands, tie down from the wind and prepare them for the customer.  But we survived and Kelsey flew in on the tail end of this adventure (20th) while we would down.  Still couldn't beat the sunny, warm days in the desert!!!
On to Palm Desert for Christmas.

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