That went well….

So, here I am again, 2 months later. Work is still crazy, but I’m adjusting to that. It’s the new normal. It’s going to get even crazier again soon (co-worker/friend having a baby soon), but I don’t plan on letting it interfere with this quite as much. Let’s see how I do this time.

As I said in the last post, there are some changes coming for mgthumbprints as a whole. The main one is this…this blog will be changing from ‘business only’ to business and faith. I was going to do two blogs, but let’s face it, I’m not keeping up with one well.

Along with that, the shop will take a decidedly Christian tone. I’ll be selling mostly t-shirts, onesies, bibs, greeting cards, and tote-bags with a Christian or just positive  message. I’m always up for special orders from friends and family, so don’t think those are the only things I’m doing. Shoot me an email or a message through the shop, and we can talk. I still want to do shirts for fundraisers as well. I’m not giving up that part. I’ve not updated the shop yet, though. Give me a week or two on that. Still working on some designs.

Why am I doing this? Well, I’m a follower of Jesus. That’s who I am at my core. I want to glorify God in all that I do. That includes my small business. I’m a work in progress, so if you know me ‘in person’ you know that well.

If you stick with me, and I hope you do, you’ll learn a lot more about me and about Jesus. You’ll find I’m not a Christian Right person politically. At all. I’m much more about people and love, and what would Jesus do. Pro-life? 100%. That’s really my only ‘right leaning’ stance as far as ‘politics’ goes. We won’t talk about politics on here, by the way. I’m just pointing out that I’m not a closed-minded nut who does what televangelists tell them and not what the Bible actually says. So don’t be freaked out and scared away! Hahaha!

I’m really excited about the changes that I’m making. I hope you are too. This is really what I’ve wanted to do all along but I just didn’t want to alienate any of my non-Christian friends. Well, if they’re my friends, they will be with the change as well! (they are…I’m sure of that)

That’s it for now. I hope to be back in the next couple days. That’s MY plan, anyway. Today is daylight savings day so I’m tired and probably will be for several days. I love daylight savings time but I hate the change. How about we just leave it this way? Who’s with me?

Till next time…

Love you all bunches!

~Nancy

Hello!

I’ve not been here in a long time! As I said the last time I was, work has been crazy. BUT, new year, new start. I’m hoping to be back more. Not as often as when I first started the blog, but more than every 3 months!

The shop has been viewed quite a bit and I’m thankful for that! I have an order coming in soon for some shirts. I don’t know how many yet. I’m kind of excited/nervous about that! The ‘I don’t know how many yet’ is the part that makes me nervous! That’s ok, I’ll get it done. No problem. By the way, the shirts are for a non-profit so please keep me in mind if you need something. I can either discount or make a donation. Whichever you prefer. I will say though, I do reserve the right to make that decision myself if it’s a charity I just can’t back. 😉

Anyway, all that asideish, I plan to do some new things on the store as well as possibly building my own personal blog. I’ve been inspired by a friend over at functionalish and I know there is value in sharing and living in community. This is my business blog. The new one, when named, will be more of a ‘come along with me and share my crazy and my love of God and people’ kind of thing! I had one previously but didn’t put the planning into it that I need to do. This time will be different. I’ve learned a lot about blogging over the last 6 months. It’ll show. Plus, I plan to talk to Lorie about her awesomeness and get some hints (heads up!).

So….with that, I’ll be going for now! Tomorrow starts a new year at work. Same great time, same great people! Lots of stuff rolling around in my head and heart and then down on paper (or computer).

 

Take a pause

 

I’ve not posted a lot, I know. I was working on some projects, work has been insane, and well, the shipping fun. More important than that is that I started to question how much I wanted to do this business.

I suppose everyone who starts a business has that feeling at one time or another, especially near the beginning. It gets frustrating. Things aren’t selling like you were sure they would. Customers have complaints or ‘suggestions’ with no regard to the fact that you look at your crafts as art, not  just ‘stuff’ you make. It sucks the wind right out of you. Trust me.

Time to pause

I decided to take some time and really give this some thought. Was it worth it to me to feel the stress I’d been feeling? Was I putting the stress on myself? Yes, I believe it’s worth it, with some change in my perspective. Yes, I’m putting some of the stress on myself.

forest-for-the-trees

I think most of my crafts from here on out probably won’t be ‘custom’ and if they are, there will be very little that can be customized. I want to create and if people like it and buy it, then that’s awesome!

Sometimes  you just have to make the decision to make your business the way it makes YOU happy. I’m not doing this for a living. Just for fun! I need to keep it that way.

Thanks for visiting with me today! I’ll have a few more things up on the shop soon!

Have a great week!

~Nancy

One is the loneliest number

 

one

Hey gang! I haven’t blogged as much lately as I was doing for a while. My ‘day job’ has been really busy so I’ve been tired. I don’t think I’ll go that long between posts again though. Why? I checked the views for the last post and I was….

BLOWN AWAY! There was 1. O N E. Just one. The loneliest number. My goodness! Did ya’ll give up on me? Or was it because that was a sponsored post? I’m actually seriously asking these questions so if you could comment, that would be great! Here’s what I learned on my own, though….

To make something grow, you have to feed it. Duh! Of course I knew that. I need to be here more. If you have a blog, make sure you show up! No matter what, post about something! I’ve seen pins on Pinterest that give ideas of what to blog about. Writing prompts or very general ideas. I think that’s a great thing. If you need inspiration, that’s where to go!

I also learned that people like when I’m myself. I need to write the blog in ‘my voice’. Everyone who writes a blog should find what’s comfortable for them and stick to it. It’s more comfortable to write that way and sounds better to your readers.

While I believe in Tailwind and think it’s a great app, I’m not sure if I was ready to write a ‘sponsored post’. I may again in the future when I’m more experienced at blogging and more comfortable with the idea. I felt a little ‘pressure’ when I wrote it. Sponsored posts are almost sales pitches in a way! Don’t get me wrong. It was my idea to do it. The pressure was from inside me. I don’t write as well when I put pressure on myself.

Bottom line is, I’ll be back a lot more often. More like I was before. I missed doing this!

Thanks for stopping by again!

Side Hustle

Side hustle doing your own thing

Notice how the penguin is off on his own, doing his own thing? The others are back there, just doing whatever it is penguins do. (Oh, yes, I like to go to the zoo with my grandson so there will be animal pictures on this blog from time to time.) Sometimes its good to go off and do your own thing. I have a full time job. I love it. I really do! Its not exciting, but I work with great people and I enjoy the work. But in spite of how much I love that job, I wanted to do something just for me. Something on my own. All mine. Extra. No pressure to pay the bills, just something fun.

That is a side hustle. Doing something you like that’ll earn you money, but maybe not to pay all the bills. At least not at first. But it’s fun. That’s the main thing. I love making crafts. It’s so much fun to create something. I never thought anyone would be interested in buying things I made…but… Etsy is there for exactly that reason. As you saw with the ‘guest post’ from My OBT, people sell all sorts of things on there! So, now it’s my turn! I’m still getting my footing, of course, but the journey is fun!

I first learned of a ‘side hustle’ when I read the book “Do Over” by Jon Acuff. (that’s not an affiliate link-just a recommendation) Do Over talks about doing what you love for a living. And yes,  you often have to start off with it being a side hustle. Actually, Jon talks about hustle a lot and has influenced me a great deal in this endeavor.

Build a plan, I’ve talked about that before. Stick to it. Before you know it, you’ll be doing what you love. This is ‘hustle’. The stick to it part. As I’ve said, as long as I have things down on paper (yes, paper) I get things done. I’m on ‘vacation’ from my ‘day job’ this week. One full day I’ll spend with my grandson. A lot of the rest of the time will be working on my side hustle! I’m so looking forward to it! Expect to see new products, PinsTweets, and Facebook posts in the next several days!

So, what is it that you want to do ‘on the side’? Sit down and make a plan to do it! I tell you, it’s one of the best things I’ve ever done!

Do the hustle!

~Nancy

 

Blogging, planning…oh, and crafting

Sunday was such a fun day! I was busy all day long. I worked on the blog, I spent hours on Pinterest, I signed up for Mail Chimp (I’m sure you saw that…please subscribe! There are benefits!) and planned out the week. I did a lot to help my business grow. It was a day well spent.

Monday I worked at my full time job then added a coupon code to my Etsy shop. From there I set up an email campaign with Mail Chimp. Subscribers now get the coupon code. I did some research and some reading. I read about ways to grow my blog, get traffic to my shop, get more followers on Pinterest, how to make money on Twitter. I even scheduled pins with Tailwind. I was putting in some time to be sure my new little business was going to succeed! I was tired when I went to bed last night. Then it hit me.

I was doing all of these things. All good things. All necessary to grow the business. But I hadn’t created anything in days! I had lost sight of why I was doing all of this! Yes, I want to blog. I love blogging. I love doing all the business stuff. But, a couple of months ago my 5 year old grandson asked me what my dream was. What I really wanted to do. “Sell my crafts on Etsy. That’s what I’d like to do” is how I answered him. He said “Then do it, Mucka! You can do it! All you need is confidence!” Out of the mouths of babes, right?

Today after work I went to the grocery and came home and sat at my computer designing some stencils. I took those stencils and etched some vases. You’ll see those on my Etsy shop in the next couple days!

I feel so much better. I learned that I need to stay focused on my main goal. All the other things were created to support the first. If I don’t do the thing I love, “make pretty things” then there will be nothing to sell on Etsy, will there??

So, added to my calendar each week will be big blocks of crafting time. It’s all about focus and balance. Make sure when you’re working on your blog, or shop, or whatever it may be, that you take time to do what got you into that in the first place! Keep a firm grasp on the roots. You have to have those to grow your business, too!

Happily crafty,

Nancy

Focus