My Accidental Etsy Shop

Posted by on Jan 8, 2015 in Yarn Ami Amour | 0 comments

YarnAmiAmourI think that somewhere inside me is an entrepreneurial bent. I remember that playing pretend fabric shop owner with Mother’s stash of fabrics (no cutting allowed) as a little girl was a delight. I would unroll the piece(s), measure it on the yardstick, jot down the yardage on a tablet and tear it off then slide the “cut” goods to the pretend customer. “Thank you. Have a nice dress!,” was my line.

In college during breaks, I worked for a local microwave oven store where I got salary and commission for selling microwaves. I also got to teach a few cooking classes. I enjoyed the income and was pretty successful at 20 years of age moving the customer up to the top of the line product. I learned earning a little money was kind of fun.

Then I graduated and began teaching home ec to 8th graders and that was the end of my confidence and desire to ever earn money again until I quit to be a full-time mom of our first baby boy. Money was tight so…

For a short period of time I went the direct marketing route with Discovery Toys (which are awesome toys, by the way), but the pressure to secure others to sell under my name in order for me to pay for my starter kit was not fun. I was able to get my starter kit at the last minute for free after two others jumped on board to sell the toys. Whew! Then I quit. I kept the toys and my grand son is enjoying them now.

Fast forward to the second baby boy and the money being tighter, my husband and I decided that I should try my hand at teaching private sewing lessons to young ladies in our home . In addition I made custom bedskirts and draperies (that was a ton of pressure). I also made and sold frozen rolls to pad the “dough” of our nest egg. I did all of that for seven years and it was fun and fulfilling, and we had money that was needed. It was a blessing.

After the boys’ homework loads grew, I realized I needed to quit the sewing and bread biz and lay low. Our financial situation had improved in those seven years and we were at peace.

In a blip the nest is empty and I have time to earn a little money again, but I still want to be available to be a wife about the home, assist our married children, a grand baby, our parents, volunteer, and teach as needed in our church.

So I opened an Etsy shop. Accidentally. Well, on purpose, but early, at the urging of my sister, daughter-in-love, and a young friend.

Read more about that here.

A rose by any other name is not necessarily an Etsy shop name. Oy. The name of the shop was supposed to be Yarn Ami (yarn friend). Rob and I had been watching way too many Poirot mystery shows on PBS, mon ami. Oui? So for lack of a better name and trying to tie it in to my name, that two word name was born, but alas, not available.

Ugh.

So, back to the drawing board. I loved that name. Amour. Love. Ah, mon ami, I checked in on those three words together and voila! They worked! Yarn Ami Amour (yarn friend love) was born!

Now, I’m in the discipline mode (my #oneword365) to make Yarn Ami Amour legit, and at times, I get rather overwhelmed fearing that my meager earnings will be audited and that I will owe more in taxes than what I netted. Oh dear. The process of trying to secure a state sales tax and use registration certificate is rather taxing! But, I shall persevere or peddling my wears shall cease to be.

But, I’m learning, and I’m having fun (most of the time…when everything works out online and in person). Hopefully, I’ll make enough to support my hobby (not my hubby). But, if I go global, then maybe I can support my hubby.  (She typed, giggling).

You can shop at Yarn Ami Amour any time. I’m working on winter and spring offerings now, so check in often.

 

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My Word for 2015: Discipline

Posted by on Jan 5, 2015 in My One Word | 2 comments

Discipine

 

Here we are. Just a few days into 2015 and I have honed into my one word for the year. It’s better than a resolution. It’s a focus for my spirit, soul, and body for the year. It is very much needed in my life.

Discipline.

I’ve known it for some time. The signs are external and internal. The external affects the internal as the internal affects the external.

And it’s all connected; the spirit, soul, and body are all connected. So often, I just let my spirit be a doormat to my soul and body.

A good healthy understanding of discipline in all those areas, mainly in my spirit, is sure to bring about good results this year.

My desire for this year is to strengthen these weak areas to the point that I will be able to notice improvement in my spirit, soul, and body. I don’t expect to be perfect at any of it, nor to be consistent, but I have confidence that with God’s help and me doing my part, there should be change for the better.

I understand that accountability is a way to promote success in areas. I’ve decided that this blog may be a good place to check in for the benefit of  accountability. Not many readers will care about it, and that is okay with me. Maybe just maybe, though, it will be that good and right kind of personal push for me to keep up with the general things here, not the nitty gritty progress.

Every so often expect unveiling of goals, plans, and progress reports with a measure of struggles and prayer requests, too. If/when I find things that are helping me, I’ll share those.

This concept isn’t new. If you find yourself interested in doing something similar, you can read more about it at OneWord365.

If you were to assign one word to your year as a prompt for improvement in your life, what would you choose? Feel free to share it in the comments. Happy new year!

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Empty Next?

Posted by on Dec 31, 2014 in Life on the Hill | 4 comments

Grandson sunlight

{As 2015 becomes part of our years, I share this piece adapted from a writing I submitted for a small group of bloggers who have been writing one another during the Christmas season. They read the gist of this yesterday. Today, I share it with you in hopes that it will encourage you as you face whatever leaves you wondering what is next. My prayer for you, kind reader, is that God will fill your year with good things that prove to you he has not left you in the mire of sadness, emptiness, or loneliness. He is certainly pointing out all the ways he has planned to give you a full life. Let’s open our eyes each morning to his new and fresh mercies with much joy for his glory. Read Lamentations 3:21-24. Happy new year!}

Are you familiar with the empty nest? Maybe you are in it or maybe you are the reason someone else is all too familiar with it. Perhaps you are dreading it?

It’s funny, but for some reason, when I type those two words for years now, they most often come out as E M P T Y  N E X T.

Are you facing an empty next? What do you dread? Why?

I find it rather ironic that I do this so often because I believe something deep inside of me has a dread of this season that has moved me from being a full-time wife and mom at home to doing whatever is next.

That was the problem, though. I had put my identity in my being wife and mom at home and had made it an idol. For 25 years I had been clinging tightly to that idol.

A sure sign of bowing down to the bugger was that as I was in the midst of the emptying season, I wondered what would go on next? Would it be full? What would I do now that I was eliminating my position as full-time mom? How would my marriage move forward? What was I to do with all my time?

Surely, my life was going to be empty and not just my nest.

Have you talked with God about this empty next? Perhaps he has been trying to show you the root of this?

One particular morning during my prayer time I came to the above realization of where I had placed my identity for so long. That’s when I concurred with God that I had made it that ugly idol. Was it any wonder I couldn’t fathom moving forward? That’s what idols do, you know. They hold us hostage until we suffer from Stockholm Syndrome and serve and yearn for that slavery from our captors with whom we’ve fallen in love.

That day, by God’s grace, I remembered my identity is found in God through Jesus Christ.

He made me a woman with gifts, talents, callings, and gave me responsibilities to handle for his designated time. Season after season, if I focus on honoring him day by day, when the next phase in life comes, I can proceed more at ease if I keep him as my focus rather than myself or my title.

Thankfully, God has warmed up my heart and mind to the thought of moving forward into the next phase of life.

The nest might be empty, but life in this next season is abundant with blessings.

I have more time with my husband and we finish sentences, whole conversations even, with no interruptions.
I get to volunteer for things other than room mom.
Spending time with our first grand baby is pure bliss.
Seeing our sons and their wives in marriages that hold up the Gospel is rewarding.
I have time to assist our four parents when necessary.
Hobbies that were dormant or nonexistent are finding their way into my life.

My sons and daughters-in-love need me in a new capacity. I’m enjoying focusing on being their sister in Christ who encourages rather than their mom who oversees and disciplines.

My fear of the N E X T was because of my sin of idolizing that season’s main role for me. I had to let it go.

What might you have been gripping that needs to be released? How can your perspective change for the better? Have you thanked God for your past, your present, and your future?

Just as there were blessings before children arrived and while they shared our home, there are blessings in this next season. I don’t want to miss one of them mourning over something that I’m no longer called to do. It’s time to move forward excited and trusting God in what he has planned next for me.

E M P T Y  N E X T? Not a chance when our focus is on him.

 

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