Tuesday, January 12, 2010

January thaw

Here is a little sunshine for folks that are weathering the winter season!  I find it so fun looking through my summer photos in the dead of winter.  It's actually balmy by Minnesota standards today, so after this, I am going down to do the long version of chores. I really enjoy taking care of my animals, it gets me outside every day in all weather,  and I truly would not leave the house some days if I didn't have to. 

In the winter I have a small studio up here at the house, and I am really enjoying making things.  Shipping was the order of the day this morning, and I was surprised and grateful for the sales since I have extended my internet break.    I also sent out another important package, and future posts will fill in the details.

Warmer temperatures here means our southern friends should be feeling a warm up too, I hope so,  I was really surprised when my mom told me it was  zero or below in Missouri where they live.

Here is my cold weather tip for folks experiencing colder than normal weather.  Dress in layers, and start with long underwear.  I put on my cuddlduds  in October or November, and they are a staple of my wardrobe all winter.  They have a bamboo fabric that is so soft it is like a second skin. They last me a full year longer than the silk version I had purchased from another company.   Okay I am off to enjoy the January thaw!!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Balance in all things

Today I put on my happy hat that I bought on Etsy from a really cool lady.   The hat is a tribute to her last goat, who lived to be eighteen.

This purchase was my gift to myself this year, and the money that I spent in her shop goes toward her donkey rescue operation.   This item touched my heart on so many levels, and considering the year end woes posted yesterday, I needed to fill my heart with a little joy.

During my hiatus from computer I have been sculpting, and goats are flowing easily from my hands, I have several in progress animals, but the goats are getting finished first and I am obtaining quite a herd. I can only think it is because of the magic goat hat!!!

Thanks Ady, donkey lady, for the cool hat and for the inspiration!!!

PS Thanks to my muddy buddies who posted with the cyber hugs, it means a lot!!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Back to work......

.....But I just can't seem to get enough steam to start my routine again.  Monday before Christmas was my last shipping day, and the last firing for any special orders.  Now I have wrestled with special orders over the years, and made the decision to end that practice for 2010.  The worst part of the deal for me is being the person in the middle taking orders, and then making sure Paul makes it, and then praying for it to turn out using various kilns, and firing methods.  I soooo hate disappointing my customers, and it is me that has to tell them when the piece they have been waiting for did not turn out.
   Besides the kiln problems, we had 2  deer/van incidents that finally put our van out of commission.  At the same time, I needed dental work and that is so costly. 
   The online sales had slipped, rather than built up as I expected them to at this time last year.  
    Midway through the December selling , my new computer crashed,  very costly repairs on that, and I think I probably voided my warranty in order to have it fixed here locally, but not before hours with tech support.

So on that Monday of the last day of shipping, I totally shut down.  I took the past two weeks to just shut off the computer, and not worry about stuff.  The trouble is now, I don't want to go back to it.  Especially the worrying.  It is now when I tend to beat myself up for the career choices I have made.  I do not know of many couples who work together the way we have,  but with Paul and I at this point in our lives have no other choice but to keep building on our skills, and keep being creative.  

Well with all that said, I am planning to stay away from the computer a bit longer, and focus on more varied selling venues, and give myself more time to do what I do all of this for, so I CAN WORK WITH CLAY!!

 I am confident that a couple of new ventures might pan out, and help our situation.  I will be posting my new work closer to February, and there will be new functional work offered soon.