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Happy November, friends! Wednesday night I stepped outside to photograph my spooky front door to send the Koropp kids because all live away this year for the first time. I was feeling nostalgic. Once I hit "SEND" though I realized I'd left the dumb door open and you can't see my pretty lit-up wreath! Alas, I was too lazy to go out and re-take the photo because I was already settled in by the fire with my book. Oh well, I'm pretty sure my youngest, freshman in college Tom, frowned down at my text for a fifteenth of a second and thought as he deleted it - "Mom, why?" Oh me, even if my kids weren't feeling pangs for Halloweens past, it was a perfect autumn day . Hope you enjoyed it too.

This morning I took a new look at the photo and saw that door as a message of transition. As many of you know by now, I'll be closing and then hopefully opening new "bookstore doors" someday soon. Somewhere. I was happy for the Price family to learn that their gorgeous building I've been nestled into since June, 2014 was sold to College Church so that the congregation can extend their thriving fellowship. However, that means me and my PPB peeps will most likely be packing up and moving. As I've mentioned to you before, our Hale Street Annex is a short-term lease so we are looking to consolidate into one store -- but where? It's both fun and daunting to imagine. Every morning I overstuff my arms with things from home for the stores -- apple pie bars to share or one more set of sparkle lights from the Koropp basement to polish a book-display -- and struggle to unlock the door with my "free" hand. (Sandy, will you EVER take TWO trips??). What will my new door look like?

Regarding our second store, to be honest, the construction on Hale Street has been impactful. In case you've not been by, here's a photo from the inside of my store yesterday morning. I hear (hooray) this phase will near completion in the soon-coming days so we will go back to our regular open 7 days ANNEX hours starting tomorrow. Still I am wary of a downtown Wheaton location only because the next years of work needed to make the streets as wide and welcoming as Front Street is now, are tough on an independent retailer. If you haven't seen it, here's a link to the long-term project map www.wheaton.il.us/DocumentCenter/View/6031/Downtown-Streetscape-Map--Project-Timeline?bidId=. Exciting and beautiful it will be, though!

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I'm taking a creative look at all my options and hey, if any of you know of some charming site with a lovely door just perfect for me and PPB, gosh, I'd love to hear! In the meantime, elves at both my stores are stringing miles of twinkle lights, carefully placing tiny Scrooge within our Dickens Village, positioning wreaths and Santas and sleighs, and displaying our most charming holiday reads just perfectly so. 

As ever, thanks for all your support, and yes, now is the perfect time to support PPB. It's true. So stop in and shop — for yourself or for all on your list. Of course we wrap for free, more on that in a few days … hint: it involves Emma and the class analyzing one's gender she is taking this fall. Never fear, I'll get you "woke on the wrap ish" (alert you to new viewpoints on the issue of gender and wrapping paper). Sigh.

  Thanks Ellen for steering me towards Ted Kooser's new poem collection. It was just the thing to settle into once the last Trick or Treaters had run off.

Thanks Ellen for steering me towards Ted Kooser's new poem collection. It was just the thing to settle into once the last Trick or Treaters had run off.

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