FRIENDS ARE THE SPICE OF LIFE

Thanks for bearing with me this month–I haven’t had much time to write. I hope everyone understands. I will try to do better.

These are crazy times but it is times like this that make me sit back and realize that there has to be meaning in all of this.

I think I’ve got it–what really matters are our friends and the relationships we create over time. Friends are the people that add spice to your life–make you glad to get up everyday. They make you smile and sometimes they can make you cry.

I have always had a lot of friends like my friend Alan–we have been friends since we were about 4 years old and we are still great friends today. I saw Alan last week for my birthday and while we don’t see each other often, it was like we see each other everyday.

And my friend Connie–we met in the 5th grade–that was over 50 years ago and we are still friends through thick and thin. Of course there is my friend Katie and her brother Jack who were the inspiration for Build-A-Bear Workshop. But then there are new friends like the ones I have met through Build-A-Bear Workshop.

There are the people I work with like Tina, Marilyn and hundreds of others and all the Guests that have made me smile by their love of stuffed animals and BABW. Everyday I get hundreds of emails from these friends giving me great suggestions about how to make BABW and BABV even better. I get suggestions about store locations, products to make and things to add to BABV.

One of my special friends is Kayla who lives in Canada. Kayla first wrote to me a few years ago and suggested that we open a store in her home town. We listened very closely but decided that a town a few hours away would be better for us. That was ok with Kayla and Carla, Max, Jake, Liberty and Katira her furry friends. We communicate a lot even though we are both busy. She with school and being a teenager and me with work. though we have never met in person, we have a special friendship. I hope we meet soon. On the other side of Canada is my friend Chelsey. I have met Chelsey because she was at one of our store openings. She and her family have become special friends!

Then of course there are the friends that contributed to my 60th Birthday Challenge—WOW!! We went way over my goal and now have raised over $67,000 for teachers and their classrooms. That is a lot of $$$ for sure. Many of the teachers are also citizens of BABV—like KimberlyMay17. She is a teacher in Texas and now her class has some new learning materials thanks to our new friendship.

When I started BABW I even gave it the tag line “Where Best Friends Are Made” because I wanted it to be a place where best friends came to make a new furry best friend and through our good deeds, people would see that being a good friend to each other, their school, their community is a worthwhile endeavor. When you create your own company or your own blog or your own online Facebook page you are communicating who you are, what matters to you and what you stand for to the world. Of course BABW did become a place where many friends have come together and did make many furry friends—in fact over 70 million furry friends have been made since 1997—that is a lot of stuffed animals!). Then we created BABV and people have brought their furry friends to life online and made many new friends.

Out of BABW came BABV where now I have over 8 million new friends. Many of those friends are very creative and have created fan pages on Facebook or even fan blogs. While these are not affiliated with BABV in any way, they do exist around our themes and so I know that while many are kids, they want to do the right thing. These kids are very Internet saavy and have created some great blogs or boards as they refer to them. I try to read as many of them as I can and most are terrific.

Unfortunately, some kids get carried away and they forget that while it may seem virtual in many respects, it is also real and when you say mean things or get very bossy, you hurt people’s feelings and most of all you are not acting in the spirit of BABV. I can hear you now saying, “I will never meet these people so who cares.” While your board is your board as my blog is my blog, I would hope that the spirit of BABW would inspire you to be even friendlier, even nicer and do more to make people feel welcome just like we do at BABW. I try to set a good example by being responsive and respectful to all of our Guests and the people that write to me because I know I appreciate it when people do the same for me.

Your Board or your Blog says something about you—who you are and what you value. It is your brand—maybe for some of you the first business you have created. I am learning the hard way from reading some of these that we haven’t been so successful in inspiring kids to be kind—some are down right mean. Guys,BABW and BABV is about fun not spite or mean statements to your Board/Blog Guests. Is that what you want to be known for? I hope not! In fact, I am sure not. You are all very sweet to me but I see some stuff I don’t like when I read your sites. Please, if you are really my friend, think about what you are saying and how you are acting and reconsider. Make a resolution to not allow mean stuff on your board or blog. Apologize to people whose feelings you have hurt and vow to have the friendliest and best board/blog in the world just like I vowed to have the best make your own stuffed animal store in the world. It matters! I will notice and so will your other Guests and who knows when you might meet your Guests in real life.

My mom used to tell me that you should “never burn bridges” or “what goes around comes around.” She was RIGHT (all Moms are by the way!) There are so many people I have been re-united with that say to me, “You were always so nice to me. Thank you.” I have received so many honors in my life. I think being nice is the highest honor I have ever received!

Love.hugs.peace to all,

Maxine and my new lamb, Ms Chop 🙂

21 Responses to “FRIENDS ARE THE SPICE OF LIFE”

  1. webkinzluver3 Says:

    i love your blog maxine

  2. Kayla Says:

    wow! That is a great post. Thanks for talking about me! You are a great friend and I can’t wait to meet you too.
    Love,
    Kayla,Carla,Jake,Katira,Liberty, and Max

  3. sarahbear371 Says:

    I can totally understand your being busy! I am half as busy as you and I can’t even keep up with all the new BABV stuff on MY blog!

    You are such a skilled writer and communicator! I love your blog! It is an inspiration to read.

    The singing contest starts today, doesn’t it? I am so excited! I probably won’t get to go to Los Angeles or anything, but I can at least try for the top 50 (or top 10, I forget since I lost my brochure thing for the contest) so I can get a $50 Bear Bucks gift card!

  4. JocelynRocks Says:

    I love this post. Many of my friends learned about the forums and boards part, and they realized their mistakes. Im glad they will all hate the hatred they had, and just become friends and get over with the past. I realized my mistakes way sooner than they did, and tried to talk them into it, but they didn’t seem to understand me. When one of my friends read this, she quickly emailed me the link, and so to everyone who were fighting. I was really glad she had understood, Im waiting for the others to finally realize that the hatred only brought us in trouble..honestly, I want to thank you soo much for posting this and making people realize that hatred [instead of violence, since there is no violence], is never the answer. 🙂

  5. JocelynRocks Says:

    I love this post. Many of my friends learned about the forums and boards part, and they realized their mistakes. Im glad they will forget about all the hatred they had, and just become friends and get over with the past. I realized my mistakes way sooner than they did, and tried to talk them into it, but they didn’t seem to understand me. When one of my friends read this, she quickly emailed me the link, and so to everyone who were fighting. I was really glad she had understood, Im waiting for the others to finally realize that the hatred only brought us in trouble..honestly, I want to thank you soo much for posting this and making people realize that hatred [instead of violence, since there is no violence], is never the answer. 🙂

    *the edited version

  6. Aaliyahgroovy4 Says:

    I truthfully think this is the best post that you have mad Maxine. All your posts are great, but this is the best because you talked about your friends!! I love all my friends!! Many people suggest things to you, and they actually happen! I suggested to you that you should make the friends list on Buildabearville in alphabetical order, and I am thankful that happened!! Thank you so much Maxine for making Buildabearville so much fun by the minute. I am so excited for all the up-coming events happening at Buildabear Workshop.

    Sincerely,

    Aaliyahgroovy4

  7. AngelAdventureBear18 Says:

    Cubgratulations on your new BAB, Ms Chop! 😀

  8. Freya/Buildabearvilleblog Says:

    Your right! Moms always know best 😉

    That was a great post and it seems well needed Maxine. Thanks for addressing a difficult subject we can all learn from.

    Congrats on meeting your birthday challenge with donors.org.

    Hugs, Freya

  9. tweety9102 Says:

    I have a very immportanr question, ok so I was at bearville outfits and I am trying to add credits because I am out, How do I add credits? There is no optoin to add credits.

  10. NancyMusicMaker3 Says:

    Brava, MamaBear!! Thank you for bringing this to your blog and for saying it so well.

  11. tweety9102 Says:

    major glitch!! I cant go shopping at the bear stuff store!!!

  12. ZoeyGirlsRock327 Says:

    Maxine, I agree with you 100% !, I believe friends are your spice of your life !,

    My best friends are Maxine clark- You ! Timmystar3, KoriSprinkles, SageGoaliebear3, & ErnieSurf, And yes i have real life friends too ! 😉

  13. destinygirlsrock10 Says:

    I agree 110% with you maxine I totally understand you being busy but I’m glad that you post at leat once a month

    Andi/ DestinyGirlsRock10

  14. destinygirlsrock10 Says:

    Maxine I have a great idea for BABV we could Have a mortgage for are cubcondos but it would be due when ever you wantted to pay it there could be no due date and each time we pay the mortgage are cub condo would get bigget and each time we payed the mortgage are rooms would get bigger two and then the biggest you can get would be a mansion that is like bigger than your cubcondo on BABV I hope you use this idea thanks

    DestinyGirlsRock10 and my new bear cutie

  15. leopapatch2 Says:

    Destiny did you get that from Animal crossing?

  16. destinygirlsrock10 Says:

    no I don’t even have animal crossing but i want it :).

  17. Susan Budetti Says:

    Ya, How do you add credits Makenzie???????????

    Askly curios Friendly,
    Susan

  18. makenzieblue11 Says:

    Hi, Susan, how’s Texas. Well, there’s this wordpress blog that I quit, but I want Maxine to see those comments, because their from BABV citizens and their very rude and they make me cry because they think I make hate blogs! But I don’t. It’s all Tristan2Hip9’s fault! He’s the one who lied to them and told them it was a hate blog, and used my name and said super rude things! It’s http://everythingyouneedtoknowabouttristan2hip9.wordpress.com/ on the first comment of this post, it starts to get mean, but they keep getting meaner. Maxine, please check it out.

    From,
    MakenzieBlue11

  19. MakenzieBlue11 Says:

    Dear Readers,

    Hi everyone! I’m Makenzie. I love this post, but I don’t have any friends. I only have two friends, actually. Her username is LillyHeart286, you may know her, and RamonaSparkle Bear, or Susan Buddettie.

  20. Faith4LeafClover584 Says:

    I love your blog your llife is sooo excting!!BTW what’s you r e-mail?

  21. hayleychocolate110 Says:

    I agree 150% with u maxine. Me and my bear skye will be going 2 BABW 4 my bearthday but the drive is 2 and a half hours away. I live in australia and my mum said she would make the long trip 4 us. Plus its near my nan’s. I would like 2 suggest somethings2 u 4 BABV

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