You may be slightly confused that whilst looking for your favourite blog, Gift Shop Hub, you’ve been sneakily redirected to Wishes of Cudworth. Please don’t be alarmed, do not adjust your computer screen, you’ve not hacked and all is as should be. I’ve had to make some changes behind the scenes and this blog post will explain why I, Chris Fox, Gift Shop Hub head honcho plus Wishes of Cudworth marketing manager has decide to close GSH. Actually not so much close, more merge, improve and evolve. However before that, here’s a story about Hermit crabs…
Harry the Hermit Crab
I’ve always had a soft spot for slightly tenuous metaphors. So, I’d like you to imagine if you will, this blog as a hermit crab. Let’s call him Harry. Hermit crabs as you may or may not know, uses second-hand shells to protect their extra squishy bodies from predators but frequently need to find new homes, as they grow bigger. Which, to bring this crabby metaphor full circle is very much the problem this blog is facing. Yes, I afraid the time has come for Harry/Gift Shop Hub to move shells. I promised you a distinctly iffy metaphor and hopefully I came through with the deal.
It’s not just the need for a bigger shell. The problem is Harry has too many shells. Instead of just the one home, he’s moving back and forth between multiple mollusical dwellings. This inevitability means some shells are more lived in than others. Some shells are even forgotten and lost to depths of the deep blue sea. In many ways Harry the hermit crab isn’t a metaphor for the blog but rather me.
Let’s put this existential crustacean dread to one side and get to the point of this article. Gift Shop Hub is unfortunately my most neglected shell and so it’s sadly time to pack away my crabbing pot. Don’t worry, Gift Shop Hub fans, this is not the end. The blog will continue here on our website Wishes of Cudworth. In many ways the blog will be better than ever, with a greater emphasis on interesting and quirky articles. To say a sorta goodbye to Gift Shop Hub, in true blogger style, I’m going to tell you why I’ve decided to merge GSH into Wishes in five handy button points.
One of the recurring themes in my most recent articles is community. I’ve long preached the virtues and benefits of high street retailers working together. Cudworth Businesses & Community was formed in August 2017 to make Cudworth, the village in which our shop is based a better place to live, work and prosper. Cudworth Businesses & Community or to use are far more ‘street’acronym CBCT is a passion project of mine. I really do believe in the power of a unified community. I’ve spoke about the group before so if please follow this handy link to read more.
As part of the aforementioned CBCT I’m currently putting together a Cudworth website. Featuring the latest news from the village including local events like our awesome Cudworth Christmas Fair in which I dressed up as a hipster elf. Both these very worthy projects are a major time drain. There is no choice: sacrifices have to be made.
You may have already gathered from my opening story about my life as a hermit carb that it’s writing part of the blog that I enjoy. Sharing my experiences and almost wisdom about life in my partners shop, Wishes of Cudworth. Ok, my articles are 40% shop stuff, 30% random thoughts that come into my head, 20% hermit crabs and if I’m generous 10% actual usable information but I do hope they connect with someone.
My focus moving forward is to write more content and spend less time in the backend of the ‘job’. I’m still hoping to run supplier interviews but will be moving away from guest bloggers as often the material suggested is not relevant, submitted only to get a back-link. I’m freeing up time to do the things that I enjoy. Which leads very neatly into…
Gift Shop Hub gets a lot of spam. My virtual mail box overflows most days and the emails range to laughable to disturbing. It’s part and parcel of any website and I really do need to implement a captcha on our contact form soon. However running multiple websites means the spam is never ending. We’re talking mountains of spam. More spam than one man can stomach. It’s time to cut the spam out of my life.
I’ve always wanted to write a novel . A Zombie detective novel. Honest. Before I’m 40. Which gives me a December deadline and time is ticking by to breath life into my undead masterpiece. At this rate of progress the undead will have rose before the book is finished and it will become a work of fact not fiction.
Wishes of Cudworth
The main reason I started Gift Shop Hub was to document the trials and tribulations of our shop Wishes of Cudworth. Then somewhere along the road, the blog took a life of it’s own. This was great and I’ve had a smashing time meeting new people from all greeting card and small shop community. I’ve struggled to balance the shop, community association, blog and my full time design job. I’ve tired, oh I’ve tired but in doing so I’ve started to fail all four. Therefore I’ve decided to put the shop and the Cudworth community first. I’ll still blog on this website and I’ll still write my Greetings Today Magazine column as long as they’ll have me (I’ll be posting the latest articles onto here over the next few weeks). It’s a case of not spreading my crab paste to thinly.
And that is indeed that. Thank you to every supplier, artist, shop and guest blogger who has given their own amazing insights to Gift Shop Hub. The inspirational words you’ve shared will live on here. This is not end but rather a new beginning. The next chapter in our small shop’s story. I’m currently moving all the Gift shop Hub posts over to the Wishes of Cudworth website. The content is now mostly here, it’s just a case of importing the images which is a time consuming and manuel job – ahhhh!
To quote Boyz II Men: “Although we’ve come to the end of the road. Still I can’t let go”. So, I won’t. I’ll continue to write these Hermit crab obsessed articles. To celebrate the independent heroes and small shop champions. To shout “shop local” and to praise those plucky shop keepers who dare to be different, bold and unique. Cheers, Chris.