And so to Saturday, Day 1 of the Miniatura International Doll's House and Miniatures Show.
Had to get up at stupid o'clock in order to stow all loose articles in the van, shower, get dressed and drive the 3 miles to the NEC early enough to bag a good parking spot.
When we arrived at 7.30am the hall was already bustling with exhibitors setting out their wares. Unfortunately our business mascot wasn't going to be allowed into the hall, so had to stay in the comfort of the van. She was not amused at the early start, not being an early riser at the best of times, so she was somewhat disgruntled at the prospect of staying in a car park all day. Even when I took her for a quick constitutional around the car park, she disdained chasing a particularly large and probably very unfit squirrel, who had been scavenging in a bin and was breakfasting on a large sticky bun!
So, on the stroke of 10am, I was settled behind my stand, nervously awaiting the start of the fair and the arrival of our first customers. I didn't have to wait long, as one of our online dollclub members, Jenny, soon appeared along with her two grandsons, ready for a day's browsing and buying. Having a chat with Jenny soon dispelled my nerves, especially as she'd brought a gorgeous hand-made card to cheer us on. Miniaturists are such nice people!
The rest of the day passed in a bit of a blur. I didn't even get the opportunity to slip away and attend to some of the items on my own shopping list.
One of the highlights of the day was the interest shown by the editor of Doll's House and Miniature Scene magazine. She took lots of photos and then asked if they could feature my Vintage Toy Doll Kit in the Kit Review section of the magazine during the summer. What a result!
Modesty forbids me from repeating the glowing feedback from customers and browsers alike, but it was wonderful to know that all our creative endeavour was appreciated. Sale followed sale, leaflets flew off the stand and I finished the day at 5.30pm exhausted but exhilarated.
Thankfully, small dog's morning frostiness had thawed sufficiently for her to greet me enthusiastically when I got back to the van, footsore and weary, but brimming with ideas and plans for future projects. Even the rain didn't cloud our euphoria, and the evening was pleasantly spent over a delicious dinner with a bottle of most acceptable Sauvignon Blanc.
We even remembered about to put our clocks forward by one hour to herald the start of British Summertime, which was somewhat ironic given the continuing deluge, but a very early night would hopefully make up for the loss of one hour..........