Tuesday, January 5, 2010

One Door Closes, Another Opens

Because this is my year of Operation Simplify, I have made the decision to put Fleur De Ink on an extended vacation. I'm hoping the powers that be at Etsy don't REALIZE it's an extended vacation (and I suspect they won't) because I want to keep the shop, in hopes that one day it can be reopened. But as of now, my other shops are keeping me busy enough and flower pens just aren't high on the priority list!

Why? Eli. That's why. My baby boy was bringing me a sock monkey jack in the box this morning and saying "Socky". (which means he wants me to push it down so he can make it pop up). But I was trying to send an email to a customer about flower pens.

Really? Flower pens are NEVER EVER more important than Socky with Eli. In fact just about NOTHING is more important than that.

Eli is my opening door. The chance to save him is there.

Eli has autism. Plain and simple. Yes, he's very high functioning and has great potential to be mainstreamed just fine one day. Yes, he's not even 2 yet (Jan 23!!) but it is there. Yes, he's done awesome being Gluten Free and I think one day we'll barely notice anything was wrong. But what if I don't capitalize on the improvements he's making now? What if I push "Socky" aside to do my work? That's not a risk I'm willing to take because my REAL work is being a mommy to two beautiful boys. And although Harrison is in school, he has his own unique needs and sensory issues that will likely escalate as he gets older.

So, I decided (several weeks ago) some things have to give. One being Fleur De Ink. I'll still gladly make them for friends, gifts, and myself, but there is no need to run a full shop around them. I continue to run Mama's Little Monkeys, Amelia Amos and Destash City because I do love doing it, and there is immense pleasure in having something that is ALL mine and NOT mommy related. And thus far, those shops are easily managed with the time I have.

Now I will not be updating, adding to, or what not to them as frequently as in the past. 3 Etsy shops, 2 Artfire shops and 2 Hyena Carts are a lot! Thankfully, they're all mostly full of ready to ship items, or easy to make items. Steamlining is my goal here this year!

And let's be honest, if I didn't get a free account with Artfire and have already paid for Destash City for 2010 I'd probably bail on Artfire. As much as I love the people, the sales just aren't there. But I plug away because I enjoy writing for Handmade News and I'll make the most of my time there best I can.

My teams are also important to me, but thankfully I have very understanding members and friends who are awesome at making the teams the best they can be! Most are also mommies and understand how life is! So remember to search "Cafemom Team" and "HandmadeLouisiana" on Etsy.com! :)

I create and sell handmade because I enjoy it but there is also a business side. If this does not make a profit for our family--in this much needed time, I'll pull the plug in a heartbeat and do what I have to do. So far, it's going good and I'm finding a nice steady rhythm of sales/fun/management. But if the cause was there, I'd turn it all in for my family in a heart beat....and just sew for me! :)

Besides, if things do get really bad, at least I'll have fabric to keep us warm and soap to keep us clean!!

So if you want any of my flowery prettiness, hop on over to Fleur De Ink because after Jan 8th, it's going on vacation for awhile!!

But you can always find me at my other shops--for now!



Amanda said...

Eli is beyond adorable! How could you NOT play "Socky" when that cute little face comes asking!!!! I honestly think that putting a shop on vacation indefinitely isn't as odd as you might think! Life happens, and you need to prioritize. If the time allows, then you can always "open" back up!

As for ArtFire, just keep in mind that it's still in it's Beta stage...that's what I keep saying to remind myself not to give up on it just yet. I've had 11 sales in over a year. Very dismal, but the potential for ArtFire to blow Etsy out of the water is there...look at all the things they've done already to make having a shop there so easy!

I really enjoyed reading this post. Keep up the good work. We all greatly appreciate you!

Geaux Handmade!

P.S. One of my 2010 goals is to visit Team Blogs :)

TiLT said...

Sounds like the best reason there is to go on an extended vaca :) I know when Wyatt was in speech therapy & such that I did little else...and it was so worth it...now we can't get him to be quiet :) Enjoy your time with him :)

mamaslittlemonkeys said...

:) Thanks guys. Amanda, you're def right, I've been a HUGE supporter of AF since the beginning and I know they can do awesome if we can just get the traffic there! :)

Oh and I totally played Socky...lol!

~~Sew Happy Designs~~ said...

My adopted daughter...I sew totally agree with you on all points that you made. I find myself searching for a balance these days, and I have children that are grown, so that part my hat is off to you on!
I have many balls in the air at the moment and something has to give, I fear it will be my shops. Maybe we can chat soon.
Hugs and Blessings~

Walk in the Woods said...

No matter where you are I will hunt you down and find you. : ) And ...

"...REAL work is being a mommy ..." Absolutely! And being a mommy is real work - important work - the most important work that there is.

mamaslittlemonkeys said...

MUAH you guys :)


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