Autumnal greetings from the Grove! It's your friendly shop fairy Michelle, working in place for now at our Dallas HQ. As you may know, I post a semi-annual update to share shop news with our circle of friends, customers, and supporters (and maybe a handful of secret haters, who knows).
Our year, like just about every other business owner's, has been defined by the 2020 global pandemic. We've stumbled and stressed, angst-ed and adapted, but are coming out stronger thus far. This picture shows me after pulling an all-nighter to get a surge of online orders out the door. I'd never felt more exhausted. But I love my shop and my customers, and have been pushing through the unpredictable parts of this crazy, messed-up year.
Our country's amazing postal workers have been top of mind in keeping our small business working throughout the crisis. Something like 95% of our orders are handled by USPS, and we could not offer the same speedy and affordable shipping without them. We're also fortunate to have received a long-term, low interest federal loan, which will help us keep the shelves stocked and partners paid right away, even during these uncertain times.
Our toughest challenge right now? Inventory. As global supply chains have been disrupted, it seems like everyone is out of everything. A heartfelt thanks to you, our lovely customers, for being patient and understanding with the out-of-stock status of your favorite items. On the plus side, we're constantly adding new items to replace unavailable ones, and working with our vendors to get the essentials re-stocked as soon as we can.
Well, that's enough about Covid for now. How about some pictures of cool witchy stuff? Yeah??
We're loving these new laser-engraved altar tiles, which can also be used as mini crystal grids! Faery star items are hard to find, so I snap them up when I can.
And I was delighted to see that the classic Touchstone Tarot got a reprint this year. Touchstone Tarot was out of print when I was first learning Tarot, and I would often be tempted by the exorbitantly priced used copies on eBay. Now this sumptuous deck is affordable again! I wasted no time in grabbing a few dozen copies for the shop.
Speaking of irresistible, how about this cute succulent dragon pin? Maybe I've been bitten by the dragon bug, because new dragon items keep sneaking their way into the catalog. (A veritable hoard of dragon items can be viewed here.)
In other news, we moved our home and offices this summer. The new space has beautiful serene energy, lots of natural light (great for taking product photos!) and plenty of office room so my wife and I can both work from home without wanting to kill each other (just kidding, love, please keep me).
After the move, I upgraded the packing room with a new professional-grade packing table. This has really improved our workflow, allowing us to fill your orders with greater speed and accuracy.
On the in-person side of the biz, the news is less cheery. We don't know when it will be safe to go to big Pagan gatherings again, and neither does anyone else. I have—to be a tad dramatic—a festival-sized hole in my heart right now. We've registered for a couple of online events (including Austin Witchfest 2021), and hope that we can stay in touch with our beloved community until this thing simmers down.
Well, that's about all I have. Normally I'd post a recent booth photo here, but I don't have any, obviously—so here's a nice brewery pic from pre-pandemic 2020. Here's to putting this year in the history books, and seeing friends again very soon!
With love and gratitude,
Owner, Grove and Grotto
Check out our previous updates here!