Saturday, January 1, 2011

Farewell to a friend....

From the Once upon a time family:

As we say good-bye to 2010, we are also saying farewell to a dear friend and associate.

Aniene Porter, who was a member of the original team that started Once upon a time, passed away this past week, while in St. Thomas. Aniene had traveled to the Virgin Islands, to spend the holidays with her daughter Samantha.

To all of us who knew her, it provides some comfort to know that she left this world, from the islands that she loved, while spending time with her cherished Samantha. Her last email to us confirmed that she "had a lovely Christmas...." and was about to "step out on the porch and look at some lovely scenery and have a cool drink".

Aniene was part of the foundation of the store. She is to be credited, for spending time and attention, on all those little details that we all take for granted. We always had boxes and bags, gift certificates, and beautiful wrapping paper, because of Aniene. We had homeowners booklets, and tape, and printer ink, because of Aniene. We had all those little things to keep us going, because of Aniene.

Thank you, Aniene, for tirelessly going through catalogs and tapping your resources, to keep our front room stocked with unusual and intriguing toys and gifts, many of which remind us of childhoods past - and all of which remind us that we're never too old to smile or have fun.

We depended on Aniene for taking care of Playmobil and Madame Alexander, for making sure we had unusual animals from Folkmanis, and cuddly teddies from Gund; and, because of Aniene, our book section was always stocked with an amazing assortment of titles - some new, some classic - but how did she choose them all?

We will no doubt be reminded, every day, of something that she took care of - and something that we probably took for granted.

We will all miss Aniene

We depended on Aniene to be here on Tuesdays and Fridays. And she always brought with her a smile, a positive outlook, words of encouragement - and a story.

Most of all, we will all remember Aniene for her stories. No matter what the occasion, no matter what the conversation topic, Aniene always had a story to tell. She'd tell stories to everyone who passed through our doors.

Wasn't she therefore destined to be part of a place called "Once upon a time"....?

If you have a story to share - either a story that Aniene shared with you, or a story about Aniene, we'd love to for you to put it in writing. We'll be collecting Aniene stories at the store - or via email to The collection will be given to family, and shared with friends.

We'll look forward to hearing your stories.

No comments: