Sunday, December 6, 2009

Acting like adults

Yesterday my mom and I decorated the windows and dining room at the restaurant for the holidays. And we didn't get mad at each other once! In fact, it was pretty fun!

That's saying a lot considering our styles are about as different as you could imagine. I am all about less-is-more, back-to-nature and my mom is all about blinking lights and dancing santas. She made a comment about how our lack of arguing meant we were "both growing." ha!

Friday we moved my great-grandparents' dresser into the restaurant (Keith's idea--a great one) in place of the salad bar. I had collected some things that I thought we could use for a seasonal display (craft stores and thrift stores a few months ago) and I think everyone, my parents especially, where a little anxious about how it would all come together. I think it looks awesome. They admitted it's pretty nice. And the feedback has been great.

Yesterday we went shopping for holiday tchotchkes and found a good deal on some second-hand ornaments and hit the hardware store for some garlands. It was slow after lunch, so we took the opportunity to take the fall decorations out of the windows (popcorn and pumpkins) and we ripped off an idea I saw on design*sponge, I think. Or The Kitchn? Oh, wait, it was The Kitchn.

This is actually not a good representation at all, but I didn't get a good picture during the day (dead batteries and blah blah blah). I will try to get one next week. Ornaments hanging on branches supported by gold ribbon.

Things are slowing down for us. We've expected this. People are saving their money for Christmas now. Hopefully fishing season will help us out. And we're going to start running budget-friendly specials instead of steaks, etc. Though we still have steaks every night.

It's a little stressful to have slow days (or weeks) and Keith, being in charge of the food costs, probably feels the most pressure. He keeps joking (in that not-really-joking way) about how we moved here to slow down and relax and what happened to that plan? That plan was ... put on hold? I told him I dreamt of pulling the Aloha down the coast of Mexico. He'd be on that in a second. Really.

I'm trying to brainstorm the aesthetic changes I want to make for the new restaurant and then prioritize those and factor in budget (minimal to nil)... One thing I am not sure about, maybe I should take an informal poll: chalkboard vs. whiteboard menu.

I really love the idea/look of a well-done chalkboard.
How fantastic is this?! VERY.

But my concern is that white (or colors) on black is harder to read than red/blue/black/green would be on a whiteboard. One waitress said chalkboard is definitely better, especially if you clean it with a damp rag to get rid of the ghosties. So I am leaning that way. Ideally I would be the one doing the lettering and art for these because I'm picky like that and not everyone on staff has A+ spelling and grammar skills. But that's not relevant to the chalkboard vs. whiteboard argument, I guess.

But I think a chalkboard just goes with the theme more. The theme being Family Cattle Ranch.
(Maybe a cow-shaped chalkboard?)

My grandma dug up some photos from her parents' ranch and I started scanning them to use on the website. And maybe blow up a couple on Rasterbator for dining room art?

Here's a great one where you can really see the X brand on that black cow.

I think this one said "dehorning" on the back. Eeeek. That's my great-grandpa on the right.

We're close to getting a sign for the building and possibly magnetic signs for the vehicles. I will be ordering business cards soon, with the name of the new restaurant... December's going to go by fast!

I told Keith we are taking a mandatory mini-vacation and that I was picking the location and he could pick the days. He picked Christmas eve and Christmas day (since we're closed on Christmas) and I picked Lolo Hot Springs. Cabin with satellite TV, micro/refrig/coffee pot. Hot springs and pool across the street. We'll take our own groceries. I'm very excited about hot springs in the winter. Keith is thinking about the possibility of sleeping the entire time. I told him he could---it's his vacation. Although I'm a little disturbed by the idea of a 36-48 hour vacation. Isn't that just a normal person's weekend? We'll take what we can get.


Northend Nique said...

Chalk. Definitely.

Chris said...

I like your seasonal altar. I mean seasonal display.

Sometimes short 2 day vacations are the best. You guys have certainly earned one.airpincs

knitty_kat said...

I like chalk too. Not that I'm an expert or anything, but if you run out of something sooo easy to make it go away.