It is so exciting, the other day I made my 3rd sale on Etsy. That is a one sale a month average. Hardly an exciting start, as 1 sale a month is far from a living wage or even enough to buy a pizza. Depending on any discounts and cost of ads, it might barely be enough to buy a small pint of on sale ice cream, yet for me it is a huge deal as it gives me a minute taste of success and gives me hope that someday I might be able to make my dream a reality.
How long it will take for my shop to become a success, if it ever does, is uncertain. Like the Etsy and self-publishing experts warn, if you want to build a business that will last, you have to be in it for the long haul. You have to go in with the mind set that this is going to be a long term investment of your time. Otherwise you will be tempted to take short cuts that will hurt your reputation or even shut down your business.
You have to go in with the understanding that, especially if like me, you do not have a large media presence and a host of family and friends ready and waiting to buy your books or your latest Etsy creation, it is highly unlikely that your shop is going to start with a bang.
Like the tortoise in the story of the tortoise and the hare, if you want to have any hope of winning the race, you have to ignore the fact that you are not blessed to be one of the lucky few who can race out of the gate and within a few days be selling hundreds of dollars worth of goods. Like the tortoise you just have to concentrate on putting one foot in front of the other, knowing that it will be days, weeks, months, and even years before you have a flourishing shop.
Instead of focusing on how far you have to go, you have to take aim at the first goal, then the second, the third, and so on. Knowing that even though it does not appear like much today, like a puzzle, you are creating the frame work that will one day fill into a beautiful picture that you can be proud of.
Sure there are going to be a lot of days where you feel discouraged because it seems like nothing you do moves the cart in the direction that you want to go. That no matter how much time and effort you make, success refuses to acknowledge you. Sadly, while you dream of making a thousand sales in a month, you might for a time have to celebrate that solitary monthly sale.
But hopefully with a lot of prayerful work and persistence, the day will come when one sale turns into two, then three, four, a dozen, and eventually one glorious day enough to pay your bills and enjoy the life of your dream.
If you would like to check out this fun collection of word games, mazes, and more, click here.
A few months ago I wrote a warning article on my Make Time For Happy blog, a fun blog inspired by my little pup, about the dangers of letting your dogs outside without keeping a close watch after a hawk or an owl came within feet of my back door. If it had happened when we first moved in 14 years ago, I could have understood. As very few of the lots in our neighborhood had been built and it felt like we were in the middle of the country. But now ever lot has been built on, and areas that were once nothing but trees have been cleared and transformed into neighborhoods and more and more it feels like we have been swallowed up by the city. So you would think that it would be safe to open the door and let our little dog spend some time roam his fenced in backyard.
For the first few years we had Happy, we often did that. But every once and a while we would notice the shadow of a hawk passing over heard and heard the birds madly screaming as the mocking bird or black birds gave vigorous chase. Oddly, as the houses sprang up around us, we were surprised one day to look out our window and see a hawk sitting on our fence. For a few days after we decided that it was better to be safe than sorry, and accompany Happy as he ran and played. When, after a few days, there was no sign of the hawk, we figured all was safe and we let Happy out as normal.
On and off for a few years, there would be a pattern of the occasional visit by the hawk for a few days each year, and then an all clear for the rest of the year. At first it seemed like there was nothing to worry about as the hawk would only relax on our fence for a few minutes here and there for a few days, and take off at the slightest peep. For those few minutes we were able to enjoy the priviliage of beholding this breathtaking predator from our family room window.
Then one year, there was a somewhat worrisome change, yet it took time for us to recognize how unnerving it was. After years of making the occasional visit and taking off, we noticed that instead of taking off the moment that we opened the sliding glass door, it would linger and let us admire it from the safety of the porch. Our hearts thrilled with amazement as we stood on the porch and enjoyed this rare view. As soon as I had the chance I got out my camera and snapped a couple of pictures, thinking how lucky I was to be granted this rare priviliage.
Then one day I tried opening my porch door and take a few steps outside so I could get a better picture. And to my surprise, the hawk stayed and let me take a few picture.
And after a couple of days take a few steps in its direction and take an even better picture.
It would seem that alarm bells should be going off at this point that this wild bird felt comfortable enough to let us open the screen door and get within 50 feet of it and then calmly turn its head and let us take its picture. Overcome with the excitement at being so close, it never occurred to us that this wild bird was slowly losing its fear of us, and that this could put our dog in danger.Continue reading “The Danger of Leaving Your Dog Alone Outside Even in the Suburbs”
So finally, after more than a year watching videos, I finally decided that it was time to listen to the advice to try and diversify my income stream by repackaging my activity books to sell on Etsy. When I finally decided that it was time to open my shop, it was not because I was ready and waiting with dozens of products ready to upload. At the time I only had half a dozen packs that I thought where ready and waiting. Instead I decided that it was time because if I did not make the move now, I might never make the move at all.
I realized that after months of watching and planning, I had gotten comfortable with watching and planning. With hundreds of videos on You Tube talking about Etsy, it was becoming very easy to say, I need to watch a few more videos before I make a decision to do this or that. And to push the decision off to a more convenient time because I had no clue what I was doing or what I was getting into.
The problem is that like learning to swim or drive, you can only learn and understand so much by sitting on the sidelines and watching others. You can watch a hundred videos on creating the perfect listing or ensuring that you have flawless SEO, and think that it all makes sense, until you are the one standing on the diving board looking nervously down at the water. In that instant it is so easy to postpone the decision for a better time when I had watched a few more videos, made a few more products, or felt no pain.Continue reading “There is Never Going to Be a Perfect Day”
Happy Sabbath. I hope that God has granted you the blessing of enjoying a wonderful Sabbath day of fellowship and study.
Initially I had plans to write about some of the difficulties of starting an Etsy shop when you are basically housebound. That was until my uncle called and said that he was coming to deliver some stuff to our house this afternoon. Even though he was in the middle of emptying my grandmother’s apartment due to her recent death, the fact that he was making the near 3 hour round trip out of the blue struck me as odd. Due to another potential reaction to the super safe iron for pregnant women, my appointment for Monday’s iron infusion had been delayed for another week. And since he and my aunt had made the long trip to our house Sunday to deliver a bunch of furniture, this sudden, unexpected delivery caught my attention, and I could not help but think that God was sending him to our house for a bigger reason.
For the next two hours, except for the fact that both my mother and I felt miserable, things went smoothly, and it seemed that my initial instincts were unfounded. That was until I remembered that the day before we had missed a call from the hospital nurse to see how my mother was doing after her four or five day stay in the hospital almost a week ago due to extremely high blood pressure and chest pain. I did not think too much of the call, and decided that despite the pain I was in, I had better clean as many of the dishes before my uncle arrived, until my sister came rushing over with the phone and insisted that I needed to talk to the hospital nurse.Continue reading “Before You Call I will Answer”
Happy Sabbath. I hope that you are having a wonderful day and thanking God for His many blessings. I know that I am thanking God for helping me to finally be able to get an iron infusion. It is only the first of several, but already I can feel a difference in the way that I breathe and I have a little bit more energy to read the word of God and complete the basic task of the day.
Here is another Find the Difference game to make your Sabbath day more enjoyable and to help hide the word of God in your heart.
Also, if you enjoy these Bible games, my family and I would appreciate prayers for little dog Happy. He has developed an eye infection, and thanks to his diabetes (a common issue with breed), and so far after several months of trying different medicines nothing has worked. We were told today that if the medicine does not work by Monday, they will have to scrape his eye.
Happy Sabbath afternoon. I hope that you are enjoying this wonderful Sabbath day and making use of this valuable time to draw as close to God as you can. Here is another fun, Bible inspired, Find the Difference game to help you in your quest to learn the word of God.
Happy Sabbath. I hope that you are enjoying this blessed day of rest and communion with God.
Here is a fun Bible quiz to test your knowledge of the Bible and to help hide His word in your heart.