Thursday, December 13, 2012

We are still here

Well all I can say is that it has been a rollercoast of challenges, emotions and more challenges.  We have shown up to do a couple of markets over the last couple of months but only a couple.  It was used to lift the pressure of the bills that needed to be taken care and help purchase the firewood for the winter. 
Bakery and store that we had hoped to start was not a success.  We gave it all we had but we were eating most of the produce and enjoying the baked goods ourselves.  Yes, it was wonderful to have all different kinds of fresh bread, cookies and cakes but really not great on the waistline and not good on the pocketbook if we were the only ones eating it. 
I find ourselves now with having to close the bakery and store.  The shelves are empty and most of the coolers shut off.  We closed in October for once the boys stopped selling ice cream and fries, people stopped coming over.   
Now we look at what use to be the fish plant and it is still there.  Sure stuff has been moved around and some flour on the floor instead of fish scales, but all in all, it is still there.  The knives still hang on the wall, fish bins still sit empty and smokers still stand waiting for us to make up our minds. 
It is now almost the middle of December and we have to make the decision to return to fishing or not.  Question is when and how will it be different so that we don't come to this situation again.  Two large questions.  One thing that needs to be taken care of immediately is a vehicle.  Our little car is just that, little and dying quickly.  I don't think it was built to do what we have done to the poor thing.  It has paid for itself 50 times over but we need to let it go.  It won't do another trip to Toronto for us again.  I only ask it to continue getting the boys back and forth to school but even that is 120kms per day.  Why do we drive them?  That is another bucket of worms but luckily we only have a year and a half left and they all can get on the high school bus. 
What would we will do different is start a CSF which stands for a community supported fisheries.  This will allow us to purchase the gear for Andrew.  The gear being nets, rope, rain gear and maintain the boat.  We also will be able to use this to take care to of some of the business expenses which is hydro, office supplies, bags, smoking supplies, cleaning supplies, fuel, employees, equipment and this list could go on.  This won't take care of everything but will give us some breathing room.  We use to start the season with nets that had more holes then netting and hope we had stocked up before winter that we won't have to buy anything for a while like cleaning supplies and bags. 
This is a big change and I could see this working.  Shortly I will be putting out a form to sign up for this and it will detail it a bit more and have the prices and dates it will go for.  If we decide to return to fishing. 
We also know the environment is changing.  This is a big one for we really have no control or say over this one.  We will need to learn to be flexible and also have fish in the freezer for these times.  Normally we don't have much in the freezers for the fish normally goes right to the smoker or for fresh.  This won't work though for it doesn't allow for bad weather.  We will need to put some fish away to allow us to still be at market with some product and allow Mother Nature to do her thing. 
This is just what has been going on.  What we are thinking and planning for.  First off we need to make it through the winter.  One step at a time. 

2 comments:

Philip Cox said...

You can count on my support if you decide to return to the business.

The quality of your product speaks for itself; it's a shame that our government isn't doing more to support delicious, culturally-enriching, sustainable initiatives like this.

Best of luck to your family.

lisa ann said...

Anything not based on economic reality is doomed to failure. Whether it’s farming, mining, tourism or small business, Family First is a truism that capital goes where Family First is made welcome and stays where it gets looked after. And whilst Australia is indeed blessed with abundant natural resources, Australia’s real wealth is not beneath the ground, it is between the ears!