Thursday, October 30, 2008

Thanks to Everyone Who Made October 29th Special for Someplace Special and the Children in Ghana

The Press conference is over.
Finally I can breathe and finally I get a chance to write! Forgive me for taking so long to get to it. As you know I am pretty busy at work, but it is now time to thank everyone out there.

There were many people in my store Wednesday, October 29th, and I had a wonderful time. So many things happened and there are so many people I must thank.

Of course, the first people I must thank are the people working for the children in Ghana. Without their love for the children and their commitment to help get the word out, I would not have found out about what was happening and been so moved to help.

So I want to thank:

Eric Peasah, Slava Madorsky, and Niurka Pineiro from the IOM. Truly, they are wonderful people and the world is a better place because of them.

Everyone from Oriental Trading Company who went out of their way to make my winning the contest a wonderful event. Yes, they certainly do "Make the World More Fun!"

Craig Katz and Linda Chokoverty, who helped with some of the planning and set up events at Mount Sinai Hospital and at their home.

The Monroe College SIFE team who raised money by selling bracelets that contain the name of one of the children I sponsor, Welcome and who are thinking up business plans for the moms in Ghana so they will become self-sufficient and not feel forced to sell their children to traffickers. In fact, the SIFE team will continue to support the IOM and sell bracelets and make money to help support the children.

The news organizations who covered the event: The Daily News, The Caribbean News, the Riverdale Press and the Bronx News, along with countless Blogs who featured me like Bronx Mama, Mommy Poppins, Boogiedowner, and others.

Bruce Silverman who is technincally not with the news but who videotaped the event for the Oriental Trading Company.

David Bonanno who helped make my store look great, and is an all around nice guy.

Eliot Engel, who attended the ceremony at my store, and added me to the congressional record, I could not believe it! And Oliver Koppell who came to Monroe college to speak about the problem of child trafficking with the SIFE team and Mr. Peasah..

I ESPECIALLY want to thank my customers, and new and old and friends and relatives who voted for me in the contest, without whom I wouldn't be writing this today! Click on this, and see the story that won!

AND, of course my sweet wonderful husband Gary Axelbank, who helped me with EVERY aspect of this event (and my life) and set up some great PR, and finally got me on to BronxTalk, his TV show on channel 67! Now that was fun!

I am sure there are more of you to thank for one of the most wonderful days I ever had, but we will get to that, and post photos as soon as there is time. THANKS ALL!!!!!

And let's keep helping those children! You can bring any donations to me or send them to USAIM yourself. The truth is I was doing this before the contest and I'll continue to support them after the contest!

And if there is anyone out there who wants to send me to Ghana, so I can bring some donations personally, just give me a call!

Friday, October 24, 2008

We Are Having A Press Conference With Mr. Peasah of Ghana, and Oriental Trading Company!

Wow! We here at Someplace Special are now getting ready for the arrival of The Oriental Trading Company as well as the great Mr. Eric Peasah of Ghana. We are having a celebration in my store on Wednesday October 29th at 10:00 for the Oriental Trading Company to present checks to Mr Peasah and to me. I am hoping there will be a decent press turn-out, as well as some of you showing up to share in the fun!

After all, the contest was to MAKE THE WORLD MORE FUN! and hopefully, that is what I did.

If you want to make any donations to Mr. Peasah for the fine work he does in rescuing children that have been sold into forced labor, you are invited to do so. I would be happy to give the checks personally to Mr. Peasah. Or you can give them to him!

What an honor for me!

Or you can donate directly to USAIM, or the IOM. In the meantime, you can check out the page that Oriental Trading did about me and my store, and the work I do.

On A Different Note
Finally, you don't have to go downtown to buy them!
In the store we are now selling great wooden trains made by munipals with all of your favorite subway lines. The A, the 1, the 4, and others. They are wonderful and well made, and will fit on your Thomas the Tank Engine and Brio track. Don't forget we also have inexpensive loose track made by Melissa and Doug to add to your Thomas and Brio collections. Come in and take a look.

Or just come in and play!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

If Your Child Does Not Like Haircuts or Even Hates Haircuts...A Couple of Stories.

Early this morning a mom came in with the sweetest looking little boy around two and a half, three years old. She whispered quietly, "we've never had a successful one" meaning of course a successful haircut.

I went over to the little guy as he eyed my Thomas the Tank Engine play table. I got down on my knees and started playing with the trains. Knocking them off, saying silly things. After a few moments, he came over and started playing with me.

This went on for awhile...and this is one of the reasons I like my job... I get to sit on the floor and play! When I felt it was time to get closer, I took the plunge and started actually buzzing his hair. I left out a lot of the little tricks I used to make him feel more comfortable, But he never stopped moving, yet it came out great! His first successful haircut!

Now, I don't mind if a kid is walking, playing, dancing, or doing anything that involves his or her head moving. And when I am working on a child, or any age kid, that child is the most important person in the shop to me.

Sometimes I am working on an Autistic child, or a child in a wheelchair, Or any kid who needs extra attention, and another customer might feel a little uncomfortable. My attitude is go out and take a little walk! Whoever I am working on is my focus, just as you will be my focus later on. I try to give 100% to the most important person. The child on my chair! Or, of course, the child walking around and playing while I cut!

I have another boy who's come to the shop a couple of times. He's an older boy with autism. I will say that he is not a big lover of haircuts! But there was one point that I looked into his eyes, and a smile came to my face, and then a smile came to his! At that point it was smooth sailing! It worked out great.

Since then, I have listed my services on two Autism websites, along with being on the lists of countless schools. As a matter of fact, I worked in a school for autistic children a few years ago.

Some children cannot be soothed. They just hate or are scared of the whole process. If you want me to do their hair in spite of their crying, I can. I will be careful, quick, and will not hurt them.

Some advice...many children get more scared if you talk to much about and go over and over the process. For some kids, the more they talk about something and ask to do it, the more scared they really are of it. The ones who cry really cannot help it.

Come see me! I can never guarantee your child will let me cut his hair quietly. I cannot guarantee your child will let me get close, or touch her or him. But I work hard, and I respect your child! Let me make friends with your child. As I said, I do my best, and I love what I do!

Friday, October 3, 2008

And the Winner Is...

I can hardly believe this! Check out this web page Oriental Trading ...scroll down to the big button that says "Make the world more fun! Contest and instant win game. Read the winning story." And read the winning story!

I can hardly believe it!

And get a load of your Oriental Trading Company catalogs! You know you'll get at least two in the next mail. There is my name bigger than life on the back. Wow!

Remember, you are all invited to our little party on October 29th when we will be presented with our prizes from the Oriental Trading Company. Mr. Eric Peasah from Ghana, and Slava Madorsky from USAIM will be right in my little shop to accept, along with me, and the Oriental Trading Company!

Wow again! And Thanks!