The One About The Orange; Another Reason to Shop Locally Owned

Shop Locally Owned; The Story About an Orange

When we last left off, the plan was to get back to the story about the orange and why I shop locally owned a little sooner. Sorry, about that.

Life got in the way. Plus I wanted to keep things real and taste it first. I mean, I needed a genuine ending for the story about the orange for here on the I Love Cowichan blog. I also wanted to get some pictures while slicing it.

This Juicy Orange is a Good Example of why You Should Shop Locally Owned

Ummm, the orange was so juicy and sweet that I got carried away eating it. Fortunately, I remembered in time to snap a shot of the last slice. I’m glad I did because as it turns out, that sensational piece of fruit is an ideal example of one of the things that I love about shopping locally owned.

Now finally the story about the Orange

I was at the Old Farm Market checkout. Two people were helping me. One was ringing my groceries through and the other was packing them into bags for me. I was already feeling pretty valued as a customer when the person bagging, holds up one of the oranges and tells me it feels as if it may be a little on the dry side.

He asks if I want some pointers on picking good oranges. Most definitely yes I reply and explain that I have absolutely no idea what I’m doing when it comes to fruit selection of any kind. I couldn’t remember his name at the time, but I knew I recognized him from a story in the Cowichan Valley Citizen.

He finishes packing my groceries and we head out to the front where the oranges are. He peels the one I’d chosen and handed me a couple of pieces to try, while he chomps down on a slice himself. He’s right it’s a bit dry. Still really sweet and enjoyable but not juicy in the least. He takes his time going through the orange bin while explaining what I should be looking for. He then hands me the perfect looking orange to replace the dryish one I’d chosen.

Again, he was right. Wow! That orange was the perfect combination of juicy and sweet!

My Juicy Orange

 

My friends, that amazing customer experience is just another reason why I love to shop locally owned.

For those of you making that extra effort to #shopcowichan THANKS! Don’t forget to check us out on Instagram & Facebook. If you have any stories or pictures you’d like to share please do Contact Us.

Coming up next on the I Love Cowichan Blog… A page of sweet serenity 😉

Saturday Morning in Downtown Duncan

Saturday Morning Vibes

Kickstarted my sunny Saturday morning with a drive around downtown Duncan at 8 am. I forgot how much I absolutely love Duncan’s Saturday morning vibes. Especially in the city square as market people are setting up. It’s fun watching the sleepy little town picking up steam while on the cusp of becoming a full-on bustling little city.

Not only will the Duncan Farmers Market be packing them in, but it’s also day 9 of the 39 Days of July. Which means we’re going to have a lot of visitors today.

I popped over to Charles Hoey park to grab a couple of pictures of the Buckerfields Duncan stage before things get hopping at the 39 Days of July. So peaceful, it’s like the calm before the storm, but in a good way. And, snapped a couple of shots of Long John’s sunflowers in front of the Duncan Showroom.

Saturday Morning Winningest Smile Award

Saturday morning smiles at the Corner House Cafe in Downtown Duncan BC
Smiles at the Corner House Cafe Make my Day!

If ever you want to be greeted by genuine smiles then check out the Corner House Cafe in downtown Duncan.

Bonus! You can get some really great eggs benny for breakfast too. I’m also loving their coffee. 

Thank you for your exceptional customer service, reasonable prices, and yummy food. This place sure is brimming with community vibes and the conversations never disappoint.

If you come in hungry you’ll leave full. If you come in feeling anything but happy they will be sure to turn your frown upside down and you’ll leave filled to the brim with good cheer. I kid you not, their smiles are infectious.

Cowichan Valley Arts Council Youth

Saturday morning at the Duncan Farmers Market Youth Activities with Cowichan Valley Arts Council Youth Coordinators
CVAC Youth Coordinators at the Duncan Farmers Market July 6, 2019

The Cowichan Valley Arts Council has hired two local students as summer youth event coordinators. The team has been busy planning some fun and creative public art activities at the local market and the #39 Days of July festival. They will also be putting on youth art camps and participating in an art show.

Right now, they are by the stage in the town square having fun with some creative activities during the Saturday market.

And, that is where the new mini comic strip Destructo Baby was born.

While you’re there make sure to grab a free colouring page compliments of the Red Balloon Toyshop. They are having a  really cool colouring contest for kids of all ages. Good luck to everyone who enters.

 

Community Supporting Community

Me thinking about what I want to do with my life ; aha moment communityA few years ago I started trying to figure out what I want to do with the rest of my life. After much deliberation I made my decision. I know this is going to sound cliché but I decided that I want to make a difference. There you go I said it! A difference…

A tad too tired these days to take on the world.  Besides, I brought my girls up so that they’ll take care of that. So I narrowed it down a bit.

I want to make a difference locally. I can make a difference in our Community!

First step was tweaking our family buying habits so that we were spending more in our community. Especially when it comes to our food, shopping local means eating fresh. Eating fresh is eating healthy. Buying local means supporting our local economy and that’s what I call an all around win. Done; check.

Next I started preaching what I was practicing to anybody and everybody in our community. Some people roll their eyes. Most people though, they get it.  That gives me hope, and so I share my opinion every chance that I get.

“It takes a community to support a strong local economy” tweets @shoplocally. One determined citizen can help make that happen. Talking just happens to be my forté.

I call it spreading some #BuyLocalLove. It’s simple really. Come together as a community; ensure a healthy local economy.

I’m studying Social Media so that I can shout it out to even more people. Why do I say studying instead of studied? It’s a never ending process. Social Media changes daily. There is ALWAYS something new to learn. Which, I just happen to love doing.

That brings me to my own personal mission statement…

Support Cowichan Valley Business Growth to help our community sustain a healthy local economy.

Support Cowichan Valley Business Growth to help our community sustain a healthy local economy.
#BuyLocalLove

Well, that’s it for now because I simply must get back to spreading the #BuyLocalLove. Then I’ll try to figure out the implications of the latest “potential” changes happening over on Facebook.

Take care,

Shelley

www.ILoveCowichan.ca

Cowichan summer of 2015 pics…

PS- If you have a Cowichan business, project, cause, news whatever it may be please let me know so that I can share with our community

e-mail: shelley@ILoveCowichan.ca

Twitter: @ILoveCowichanCA

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ILoveCowichan

Newly launched…

Instagram: ILoveCowichanDotCA

Pinterest: ILoveCowichan

Cowichan Valley Treasures A Hunting We Will Go

The Cowichan Valley; a veritable trove of hidden treasures

When I was managing the Monk Office Supply store in Duncan, I met a lot of Cowichan Valley business owners. I saw first hand how hard they work. I also witnessed A TON of generosity. Even in difficult times they supported local causes.

Local shop owners are not only passionate about what they do; they take pride in and are supportive of their community.

These business owners taught me the importance of shopping local and what it is truly like to be part of my community. When I buy from a locally owned independent shop I am supporting my community, my friends and my neighbours.

It feels great being supportive, it’s nice being genuinely appreciated and I’m provided with expert service. They aren’t just merchants, they are specialists.

I know, I know, I’ve said this before a favourite thing about shopping locally is that I like to visit. For me it’s all about the experience, especially the smiles.

Amanda, Kendra, Taylor of Flynn's Fish n Chips Cowichan Valley locationThanks to the girls at Flynn’s for their wonderful smiles (including Amanda our very first Winner of the Winningest Smile Award), the amazing cheese fries and for helping me to finally convince hubby, that my kind of exploring is fun! Ummm I wanted to share Amanda, Kendra & Taylor’s beautiful smiles but it seems that Robert’s phone crashed. We’ll be back soon…hope to get all 3 of you together again. Kudos to all three of you for great service and radiant smiles!

It took some prodding but hubby is now on board and has started exploring (and shopping) the Cowichan Valley with me. I love being out and about; seeking caches of hidden treasures that Cowichan has to offer.

This month we discovered and visited (twice!) Old Farm Gifts/Specialty Coffee. We’ve been going to the market for years and never realized what was going on inside next door. These pictures will help put into words what I can’t….

There is something for everyone.  In fact there are a whole lot of somethings for everyone 🙂 What a difference a week makes. Our first visit to Old Farm Gifts/Specialty Coffee was on a cold rainy day. What is better than sitting in front of a real fireplace sipping a coffee?

Cowichan Valley's Old Farm Gifts Specialty Coffee fireplace

The next week when we went back we sat outside enjoying the sunshine (while I sipped my delicious coffee). The one constant for both visits was Mariah Viberg’s warm welcoming smile. When she smiles, you just can’t help smiling back. Thank you Mariah for being so wonderful at what you do. You are ILoveCowichan.ca’s latest Winner of the Winningest Smile Award!

Mariah Viberg

 

I’m happy to report that my husband Robert, my daughter Brittany and my youngest Victoria are all on board with supporting their community (the Cowichan Valley) by shopping locally as much as they can. Can’t wait to see where we go next week.

Take care!

Shelley

 

PS- Remember to shop local…support your community, your neighbours & your friends.

PPS- Old Farm Gifts/Speicalty Coffee 5169 Francis Street 250-748-7147

Buy Local Twitter Ambassador

Over the last five years I’ve become more aware of why it’s important to “buy local”. I’ve been doing my best to be supportive of businesses owned and operated in the Cowichan Valley, especially in Downtown Duncan.

Besides the obvious…I started to buy local more often myself, I decided another way I could support Cowichan Valley businesses is by becoming somewhat of a buy local Twitter ambassador.

Now, I say “attempting” because it’s been way more difficult than I expected.

Buy Local Twitter Ambassador Spell Check
Apparently re-tweet is causing some verb confusion 🙂

What I expected was, to log in to my Twitter account (@ilovecowichanca) find all of my favorite Downtown Duncan businesses and follow them. Plan was to keep it honest. I would favorite and re-tweet interesting stuff. I would tweet about each and every excellent experience I have as a customer. I would tweet about my favorite purchases.

What I didn’t expect was….

  • to find as few twitter accounts as I did
  • the low number of acknowledgements I received after following
  • so little overall tweeting activity

I don’t think some small businesses realize how powerful a punch the right kind of tweet packs. Nor how many of their customers (plus, potential customers) are right there, ready willing and able to interact with them. They don’t yet see the value in having a Twitter account; the reach potential.

Buy Local Twitter Ambassador Thank you
Always say thanks to people who follow you on twitter

For those that do have a Twitter account, please understand that proper etiquette (manners) still apply in the virtual world. If someone calls or walks into your place of business you don’t just ignore them. You acknowledge their visit and you thank them.

The same goes for Twitter. If you have an account and someone follows you, acknowledge that they followed you by (at the very least) tweeting a thank you. There is a very good chance that the person who followed you is a customer.

You’ve taken the time to set up a Twitter account for your business, don’t have it just sit there dormant. Very little or no activity whatsoever is probably worse than not having an account. You don’t have to dedicate a whole bunch of time but pencil it in.

It’s only 140 characters for goodness sake!

Tweet something of interest (relevant to your niche) at least once per day. Not just a sales pitch in each tweet but something of value. Thank new followers every day.

If you’re stuck for something to say thank specific twitterers (wow that one is most definitely not ok with spell check ) for retweeting and/or favoriting your tweets.

A follower (someone who is interested in your business) is giving you permission to share information with them, don’t pass up the opportunity…and while you’re at it  do yourself a favor, consider following them back.

Support Your Neighbors Your Friends Your Community…Buy Local! (pretty please:)