February 25, 2011

Stress Stress, ahhgh Stress!

Sigh. Two Quickbooks consultants have failed me this week. I'm starting to wonder if I've entered my own personal Groundhog day in which my taxes are never completed, the kitchen counter still has crumbs all over, and I'll never ever sell another piece of jewelry again. Pardon the forthcoming small business owner rant..... but seriously. One of my items was even featured in the "related items" section in this ETSY.com blog post. (You'll also notice our friends Totusmel and Ladyshuttlemaker in that mix) With the several hundred extra views that feature sent my way, I was hoping to gain a little momentum, encouragement via sales....but nada. It's a lovely article. But I'm absolutely not sure what I'm gonna do other than pray if February ends and I still have only one jewelry sale for the entire month. (please don't take this as a plea for anyone to hurry up and buy my jewelry, this is just my personal vent time....)

I'm sure God has things all figured out, but I'm just bewildered because it seems as if my sales have just vanished in thin air. I haven't had a month with such low sales in a year, and at this point last month I wasn't workin' nearly as hard at it. And the electric bill was astronomical this month. (breath, Krystle, breathe!)
Anyways. My drivers license is still unrenewed. The weather took a hard turn and I decided it was not best to be drivin in the early morning on ice rink streets. My taxes are unfiled as I've yet been unable to get my software up and running to process my information. I contacted two consultants, the first cancelled and referred me to a directory of other consultants, and the second failed to show at our appointment time today. Turns out she was stuck with another client, but I was pacing the floor with palpatations for two hours waiting for her to come, trying to figure out when I would make it to the grocery store to pick up food, because of course there is "nothing to eat" and we have a birthday party tomorrow. Have I ever told you how I really can't handle party planning or hostessing? It stresses me out more than taxes. I don't know why, and I wish it weren't that way. But it is.

So. In the midst of all my tumult, I did take a tatting break. And instead of making anything I "had" to make, I put together one of my favorite projects (pictured above). The hair combs are so much fun, because I just let the design grow as I go. In fact, I had a completely different set of beads and crystals picked out for this comb. The ones I did end up using were part of a bridal crown, given to me by a friend who was sad to see it sitting unused and wanted it to have a new life. No two combs will ever be alike, they are like little canvasses, my own artwork where I can just let my brain go and not bother to count stitches. (you can click on the picture or the link to see the other pictures of it in the etsy listing.)

Now I bid you adieu, I am off to unwind myself so I can set aside my stress and be ready to fully enjoy what I know will be a wonderful princess birthday party tomorrow. My little big girl turns 4 years old! How grand is that. I am feeling better already just thinking about it. I think I'll go stuff the pinata, using that as an excuse to sneak a little of the candy for myself :-)

February 22, 2011

Filing. I've resorted to filing.

Today, is avoidance day. Avoiding the inevitable amount of video based tutorials I'll be watching to get this quickbooks thing rolling. I don't want to deal with this so badly that I have resorted to something I hate almost worse than taxes.......filing. In truth, I probably do my filing once a year. during that year I fill drawers and cubbyholes with paper that I'm sure I'll need in the future. So today, goodness knows what posessed me, I grabbed the nearest hot mess of paper and started sorting on my office floor. Currently, there are about 15 piles of documents that need to be put in the file drawer. I'm avoiding that right now by bringing you this blog post :-)

Above you will see a little snapshot of an idea I had last year during the hectic craft show season. I plan on further developing this little bird charm idea with different colors, sets with earrings, etc. For now, one little necklace is up and listed in the shop.

Big Thank You to those who have recently made hand dyed thread purchases....It has had the desired effect of making Dr. Vonthreadmore pester me incessantly to get her thread wound.

February 21, 2011

Because my brain needs a break.

So today that was supposed to be tax day, turned quickly into oh no this software isn't going to do what i need it to day. So off we went, my four year old and I, to exchange the software and buy a pinata for her party. That was the high point of the day, and then, it turned into oh dear Lord what have I done my brain is fried from watching Quickbooks vidoe tutorials AHHHHH day.

This blog post is so I can get my brain to think about something else before it completely shuts down. How about that interestingly orange thread you see in the picture above this post? It's Lizbeth #696..... soft orange or something like that. Anyway, it's a strange color. I saw it in person at IOLI last year, and swore I'd never buy it. Ick. So, looking in my drawer last night, I found it....unopened, and honestly I cannot remember what posessed me to order it! I think, generally, I have a good knack for color coordinating in interesting ways....but this was just staring at me .... laughing at me. Finally, I had to call in Dr. Vonthreadmore. I had been approaching the color from a floral mindset.....and it just wasn't happening. I held it next to every single drop bead and seed bead within my collection. Nothing looked right. Well, Dr. Vonthreadmore, as helpful as she can be, let me stew over it a bit longer before dropping a vial of creamy pearl seed beads in my hand. Without a word, she stalked off into the night. (she's not talking to me agian, I promised her an etsy shop of her own last year, and she knows that I have been rethinking that idea) After staring darts at the back of her head (really, I get enough attitude from the girls... Dr. V just needs to put on her big girl panites and move on) I took a glance at her selection. Badda bing she was right! Instead of tryint to push a pink or a green on this orange thread, the pearly smooth color she had indicated was perfect! A creamsicle pairing! Delicious! Now, I think we have a winner, and a use for this interesting and no longer awful thread color! So, thank you Dr. V. I'll do right by you soon, I'll have a whole batch of thread wound and ready for dye.......as soon as I figure out how to set up Quickbooks. Maybe our next thread should be called "death by taxes".

February 20, 2011

Where did this month go?

Tee hee, sorry I've been gone so long folks!
One commenter on my rather lackluster bloggerversary post got it partially right. The kids have been sick, and we've had a wonderful time discovering allergies to antibiotics. Now that it's over, we are preparing for the 4th birthday of my eldest. She has chosen a princess theme this year, and a quick trip to the dollar store got us all set up with fine princess decor. My dearest husband has even chipped in on the planning (there are few things I detest more than event planning, paperwork being one of them...) so I have actually enjoyed the process. I even got the invitations out two weeks in advance! That is a major accomplishment for me right there. I've been unfortunately neglectful of some of my ehem, responsibilities lately. My Drivers license is expired, and of course did I remember that before I got carded at a club? I'm not the barhopping type mind you. My dad and I follow a few musicians in the area, and he'll take me for a coke and potato skins while we enjoy some fine tunes. Anyway, imagine my joy when the 6 foot bouncer at the irish pub gave me the evil eye....apparently he's not supposed to let anyone in with an expired license. Who knew? Well, he let me in out of the kindness of his heart I guess, and we enjoyed the musical delights of Jerry Miller (Moby Grape anyone?) So, needless to say, I will be in line at the Department of Motor Vehicles promptly Tuesday morning. Really, I just forgot. Then I was sick. Then I forgot again, and then the kids were sick...you know the drill.
The other area I've neglected is taxes. GASP! HORROR! This being my first year as a business owner, I cannot tell you how confused I was.....there's the IRS, the DOR, and they both want different sets of information from me. Did they bother to mention any of this to me when I got my license? The "pamphlet" that was included with that license was less that usefull. Anyway, I am an annual filer with the state of Washington, so my DOR taxes were due January 31st. I had scheduled a class with a local accountant to help me understand the hot mess, but, of course that was on the calendar while I was sick..... after recovering and rescheduling, I managed to attend recently, but am still facing the process of actually extrapolating the information I'll need....as well as set up a correct and useable record keeping system. Sigh. Really, I just want to make some earrings people. I'd choose dental work over bookkeeping. Seriously lacking motivation but Jim is home tomorrow for President's day, so I'll have no excuse to not shut myself in the office and get 'er done. Pile on top of that my miserably low sales in the etsy shop so far this month, I'll need some serious chocolate to make it through the day tomorrow!

Back to the Bloggerversary. I had planned on a big to-do over it, I've been blogging for two years now. Many changes have happened in that time around here.....arrival of daughter #2, purchase of our home, transition into jewelry business, quitting my day job. Now that it is several weeks past, it no longer draws me with the same charm to celebrate. BUT. I did want to do something special to say thank-you for all of your support through these two years! SO. Leave me a comment on this post, and let me know you'd like to be placed in my drawing and I'll send something special (I haven't decided what yet) to one of you. International entries are welcomed! I am so happy to be connected to this wonderful community....and for those of you dedicated enough to make it to the end of this post, I'd love to send a little friendship your way! Just remember to make sure I have a way to contact you, either an email address or a link to your blog.
Thanks everyone!