Saturday, April 18, 2015

Joyish


I'm sitting here while kids fill my garage for "band practice" letting brownies cool, after a day home with a sick Ava yesterday where I busted out a ton of projects.  I painted the back of one of my kitchen cabinets the same shade my island got painted, and that led to a lot of shuffling around, door moving, etc. Best day ever!  I'll be sharing more about that, along with the organization of all my cabinets and drawers soon.

But...I just realized that my blogging anniversary came and went and I didn't even think about it. I've been blogging since March of 2008. Seven years of documented life... wowza.  That's a lot of words... and pictures... and heart outpourings... and faith fumbles and recoveries... and musings... and inspiration sharing... and DIY-ing... and friend making... and creating... and recipe trying.  A lot.  

I was clueless.  I didn't know where it would take me and how it would change me and shape me.  I became a blogger.  People who knew me were shocked and wondered why on earth I would do that.  They feared for my privacy to which I replied, "what privacy?"  I'll tell anyone anything, pretty much.  They shrugged and said things like, "well just be careful."  And then I met you.  And you loved on me, encouraged me, grew with me and pushed me to open my Etsy shop.  Pure joy in the discoveries.

That was a whole other ride starting in January of 2011 with some cute little "I Heart my man" tees.  Do any of y'all remember those?  They were crudely made but oh-so-sweet and I never meant to sell them, just wanted one for me and then so did others.  I sold them so fast it made my head spin.  It took me a while to find my feet in Etsy but everything I tried sold out so I just kept making things.  I made camera strap covers and chicken wire memo boards... I tried out jewelry and these adorable owl messenger bags that were perfect for my daughter's demographic.  One of my favorite things were screen printing and I taught myself how to make screens with emulsion and light.  It was crazy fun.. but so much work.  I made ball jar dishtowels and sold hundreds.  Eventually I shut those down because I saw too many copycats and that's not my scene. I made printed napkins and so many other items... then the company I purchased all my supplies from stopped making things and I didn't like anything else I tried so I put all the screen printing stuff away.  I hand-stamped hundreds and hundreds maybe even thousands of Christmas garlands.  It was the most wild thing ever.  They had the different Names of God on them and they were the bulk of my yearly income.  I stamped until my fingers almost bled.

Then came my niche.  Art.  Mainly watercolors but a few acrylic paintings remained.  I loved getting inspiration and then taking it to get scanned and printed.  That was my favorite and I loved being asked what I did for a living... I felt like I could actually say, "I'm an artist." What joy.

As seasons change, so did my schedule and I picked up a super creative part-time job. After two years of taxes that crushed us, I decided it was time to close my shop so I prayed over it and God specifically answered with a confirming "YES close it." Joy in the change.

So now I'm ready to say goodbye to Etsy as of next Friday morning, April 24th. (Don't worry, I'm not closing down my blog... I'll still be here!) You've fulfilled my wildest dreams of helping me sell my own artwork.  Your kind reviews knocked my socks off.  Your purchases floated my family in ways you will never, never, never know.  You made a difference in my world through my shop.  I have such joy in my heart as I close it down next Friday morning because I'm right where I am supposed to be right now and because of YOU.  You all are just the best.  Thank you for making my shop a success and for being my cheerleaders.  There is no way I could or would have ever done any of it without you. You can still place orders between now and then by clicking here.

I just adore you all so very much.  Thank you.

**UPDATE- I had to close my shop early because I sold out of everything.  What a lovely way to end. Thank YOU friends.  You are so dear to my heart. 

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10 comments:

  1. I am thrilled to have some of your creations. What a sad thing that taxes is what was the straw that broke the camel's back. THAT is maddening! Thank you for being so open with us in your life. You have shared heartache that matches ours...you have shared recipes that have become staples in our homes...you have blessed us simply with your Sasha-ness. Thank YOU!

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  2. I'm probably old enough to be your mom but when I grow up I want to be just like you. You are so cool. Good luck with this new chapter!!

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  3. Wow. Have just found your blog and its just amazing. I love the craft and tips. You have inspired me to start looking for crafty decorations for my daughtets baby shower. Thank you. Ps am slowly reading all ypur blog

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  4. My comments are from curiosity not criticism. Isn't selling on Etsy similar to being self-employed meaning that you would need to plan for the tax day? I'm just wondering if there's something I'm not aware of.
    Thanks!

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    1. Yes you do want to plan ahead for that... the government still sees Etsy sellers as "self-empolyed" and gets about 30% of what you make so if you've got a small shop that is just slightly more than a hobby shop, just like all small businesses, you've got to factor in charitable giving, quarterly taxes, expenses and the like. It leaves one with a slim profit and when all was said and done it wasn't the best choice for my family. Hope that answers your curiosity.

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  5. No, no, no, no, no! I just signed on after being off for awhile. (I teach, therefore I have no free time!) ha! And was so so so sad to see your easy shop is gone. If you have a rogue painting of a mason jar or cow or arrow sitting around, please, please, please let me know. I am all about supporting artists. I do understand that you must do what is best for your family! Best wishes!! So glad the blog will continue!!!

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  6. Etsy - not easy…. see how sad I was?! :-)

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