Oops, my bad.


I meant to post yesterday. I really did. It wasn’t going to be all that impressive, but it was still going to be something.

Intentions

This is NOT a Lil Wayne quote…

But I ran out of time. I made a pair of fingerless gloves, took pictures of six items for my shop, and drank a lot of coffee. Oh, and I watched figure skating. Then I tried my best to look like a hooker for work, but I failed miserably at that too.
hooker-fail-epic-fail-1295920771

In fact, my boss told me I looked like a “church hooker”. I’m not sure what that means, partially because I don’t go to church, but I guess I’ll have to try harder tonight. It’s been proven, by me and my extensive experience, that servers make way more money when they dress slutty. I think where I went wrong was with the fake eyelashes; I just could not get them to stick. I worked at them for about 20 minutes before I finally gave up.

Anyway… I meant to post yesterday, just as I meant to edit all those pictures, but I got neither of those things done. I feel terribly behind my goals, but I finally got the edits done this morning. Everything is posted, so all the items in this post are up for sale. And without further ado….. Here they are!

Baltic Heather boot cuffs

Baltic Heather boot cuffs


Lady Slipper boot cuffs

Lady Slipper boot cuffs


Beige fingerless gloves

Beige fingerless gloves


Mustard fingerless gloves

Mustard fingerless gloves


Red tweed fingerless gloves

Red tweed fingerless gloves

The other item is a pair of yoga socks that I relisted. I did get to use my new tripod, which works amazingly well. It’s a bit hard to take pics of fingerless gloves on my own, but it’s totally doable.

So there’s my intended post from yesterday. Like I said, not real impressive, but there it is just the same. And with that done, now it’s back to work! Happy Saturday everyone!

Saturdays are made of yarn

Indeed

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Pardon my mess…


Oh. Hi. It’s almost 5pm and the only productive thing I’ve done today is make a damn blog button. It’s to your right, by the way. Go look at it. And when you’re done looking at it, please for the love of all that is holy, do something with it. I’m going to be really depressed if I spent all this time working on something that no one was interested in.

Ok, so that isn’t the only productive thing I’ve done today. I also got really angry at my new light box.

My Light Box

See the carpet in between the sides and the bottom? Yeah, that’s because the damn backdrop doesn’t fit. Argh.

Tripod

But it came with this tripod. So that’s cool.


See what I mean?

See what I mean?

Why???? Why doesn’t the backdrop fit? What the effing shit kind of company does this? Not to mention, the instructions for said light box were in terribly broken English. I should have read the reviews before I put it on my Christmas list, because apparently I’m not the only one with this problem. I guess that’s good; it means I’m not messing up on the assembly (but who knows; I don’t read broken English).

It’s not all bad. I’ll still use it. I’ll just have to slide my matte board underneath it so the bottom is covered. Not sure what I’m going to do about the back, but I’ll figure it out.

Boot Cuffs @MadebyMegAnd I did finish these boot cuffs. I wanted to finish a pair of fun purple colored cuffs too, but I got distracted. Damn blog button!!!

I also wanted to nap. I only get two days off this week because of Valentine’s Day (and I forgot that I have a boyfriend now, so I probably shouldn’t have asked to work), and we’re supposed to get another blizzard on Thursday. And I was up at 5am to watch curling. Yes, you read that correctly. I really need a nap.

But instead of doing either of those things, I’m sitting here and writing this blog entry. Because while a part of me (a large part) thinks I should be sleeping or knitting, another part says fuck it, it’s my day off. And it’s Monday. Regardless of the fact that it’s actually my Saturday, Monday still sucks.
Today Sucks

Tuesday Top Ten – Top Ten Worst Things About Working From Home


Last week I discussed my top ten favorite things about working from home. But as many upsides as their are (and there are actually way more than ten), there are just as many downsides. So today, I’ll continue with last week’s theme and discuss the Top Ten Worst Things About Working From Home.

1. So much to do, so little time.
Sometimes I find myself a bit overwhelmed with everything I’d like to do. It stresses me out. I want to make boot cuffs. I want to make fingerless gloves. I have to find time to make seasonal items. But I also have to package up all the orders, and make sure that my best sellers are available. Just thinking about everything I could be doing right now, instead of writing this blog, is causing me to panic a bit. I’ll be alright, but I could really use just a few extra hours in the day.

frabz-Working-from-Home-What-my-friends-think-I-do-What-my-parents-thi-d0e9e82. What do you do all day???
I know that no one takes my little shop very seriously. No one but me, that is. I can work from 6am until 11pm, and feel very accomplished on my own, but the people around me just see that I’ve spent the entire day watching TV on the couch. I haven’t had a real day off in years. Not that I’d want one; I’d be terribly bored. But it’d be nice if the people around me could see all that happens here on a daily basis, and that it’s not just sitting around watching TV all day. Sure, the TV is on, but while it is I’m knitting, or blogging, or posting on Facebook, or promoting my shop on any number of other sites, or even reading about how to promote my shop. There is a lot of work involved in this venture, but most people just think I’m lazy.

3. Lack of social interaction.
I’m an introvert. I don’t like people. Which is why this situation fits me perfectly. But, even being so introverted, there are times when I crave the presence of people. My boyfriend is great, and my cat is a wonderful listener, but sometimes I need to be around other people. So I wait tables at night. If I didn’t have my “day job”, I think I would lose my mind. I’ve always said to the people I work with that even if I was a millionaire, I’d still wait tables. I need to have an excuse to leave the house at least a couple days a week, and since I hate (with a capital “H”) shopping, I need to work. I could probably quit and be ok financially, because I don’t really need a lot of money to live, but I’d be afraid of losing touch with reality. Facebook isn’t a good substitute for face-to-face contact, at least for me.

4. Distractions.
As much as I love naps (if you have read last week’s Top Ten list, you know how much I love naps), it’s way too easy to just lay down and go to sleep. And sometimes I run out of energy by 11am and could sleep for hours if I let myself. Or I could spend hours looking at Pinterest. Or the Etsy forums. There are so many things that I could do that seem like a huge waste of time. And some days, I allow myself to do those things. But most times, if I spend a lot of time on the computer or napping or whatnot, I feel bad about it and end up beating myself up for not being as productive as possible.

5. No benefits.
Now this one isn’t as much of an issue now, since the Affordable Care Act took effect (which I will discuss at length in another entry). But this job doesn’t come with any benefits at all. I don’t have a 401K (I do, actually, but for the life of me I can’t figure out where it is). There isn’t any life insurance. Etsy doesn’t offer a health plan. Thank god for Obamacare, because otherwise I’d be paying hundreds of dollars a month just for the minimum. Worker’s comp would be great, but that doesn’t exist either. Carpal tunnel is a pain in the ass.

6. What is this “sick time” you speak of?
Or vacation time. If I’m sick, my “boss” (my “boss = me) still expects me to work. If I’m on vacation? Yup, still working. Not that I mind, but still.

7. Lack of a consistent income source.
Now this isn’t an issue with working from home, specifically. It’s an “I own a small business all by myself” issue, really. Obviously there are times when my shop is busy, and times when it’s very very slow. The few months around the holidays are always going to be busy for my original shop, since I sell items that are more suited for cold weather. And the summer is always going to be busy for my second shop. But the in between times? I can go months in between without making more than $100. Thankfully I know how to save my money, and I have my “day job”, but if I didn’t I’d be screwed. Or homeless. Probably both.

8. My ass hurts.
No, not like that. Sickos.

I sit pretty much all day, every day. I’m really good at sitting. Sitting doesn’t burn a whole lot of calories. But since I’ve lost all that weight, I’m not so much worried about the calories anymore. I am, however, worried about how badly my bony butt hurts after a long day of sitting on it. And how stiff the rest of my body gets. This is where my “day job” becomes a benefit because I’m very active there, and I try to go to the gym after my shifts to balance out all the sitting I do during the day. If I didn’t have to leave though, I’m not sure I would ever get enough activity. I’d probably end up weighing 600lbs. It’s a vicious cycle.

9. I have no boss.
Other than myself, of course. It’s great, really it is. But as awesome as being my own boss is, it becomes hard to keep myself on track at times. Again, the distractions are numerous. And finally…

10. I have no schedule.
This one is an upside and a downside. I have a lot of freedom. But when does it become too much freedom? I try to schedule my days as much as I possibly can, because I need the structure. But if I don’t get that pair of yoga socks done by 7pm? Oh well. It’ll get done eventually. I develop kind of a “meh” attitude about things sometimes. Not good.

headerAnyway, I’m not the only one who feels that there are both upsides and downsides to working from home. Apparently The Oatmeal agrees with me. How about you? What do you think are the worst parts of working from home, or being your own boss?

Jumping right back in…


ImageOh hey! Whatcha been up to? Oh me? Nothing, just changing pretty much my entire life.

So here’s a recap of the past year…

In January I started my new shop. So far, I sell coasters, magnets, and various other accessories there. But the best thing about it is that I can expand it pretty much as far as I want it to go, as opposed to my original shop which should just stay with knitted items, if I want it to stay coherent. I’m trying to decide how I should arrange it as we speak, but with the most recent changes to how many items are listed on each page, I think I’ll wait to make a decision on that.

In March, I decided that I needed to lose weight. If you know me, you know that I’ve struggled with my weight for as long as I can remember, but when it was discovered that I had a problem with my thyroid I lost about 45 pounds. I’d gained about 15 of that back over the few years since then, and was at 157lbs two summers ago. This was me then:Image

So I needed a change. A big change. My first goal was 120lbs. I started Weight Watchers. I went to the gym 3 to 4 times a week after work. I bought a pedometer, even though I didn’t wear it much. I made an awesome “gym mix” on spotify. And by July, this was me:

Image

The green thing is my row counter so I can knit wherever I am

Well, at some point I decided 120lbs wasn’t enough. I decided I wanted to be 115lbs. I’m not sure why 115 sounded better than 120 to me, but it did. So after going a bit crazy on vacation, I got back to it once we returned home. And by the time August had come and gone, this was how I looked:

ImageAnd on Halloween, I finally felt comfortable wearing a “slutty” costume, even though it’s clear that I was more concerned with being warm. Not sure why, because I went to work and sweated my ass off.

Image

Me in the cheetah costume, and a few of the girls from work.

So now I’m done, and I’m hovering between 112lbs and 116lbs. I’m not really done, as I still have to get some tone to me, but I’m finally happy with my weight. But it’s amazing how much extra skin comes from that much weight loss! I started, about four years ago, at 188lbs. So in total I lost about 75 pounds. I still feel fat every now and then, but I’m starting to get used to being a little person. I haven’t been this small since I was ten (TEN!!), so it takes some getting used to for sure. 

In October, I began dating my best friend and roommate.

Image

Us at the summit of Mount Snow in Vermont, after 3 days and 15 miles of hiking.

It’s been a bit rocky, but things have kind of always been that way between us. He is and always will be my best friend, and I love him very much. We just kiss more now. Lol, so really not much has changed there.

Anyway, that’s the major things that have happened in the last year. I promise I will be back soon. I want to talk a little bit about my plans for the next year, but know that it involves a solid plan to not disappear for another year! Take care all, see ya soon!

To work, or not to work…


Turns out I don’t even get a choice in the matter. I was scheduled to work tonight, but because we got an itty bitty amount of snow (I’m talking an inch, maybe), I got called off. Damn restaurants and their common sense, not to mention lack of customers. I need to work!

Ok, I guess I don’t really need to work. I sold these fingerless gloves last night, so I should probably finish them up. Then I have a pair of socks that’s only halfway done that I can work on, and of course there are always coasters to make. I also found a pattern for little felt hearts that you can put treats and stuff in, so I want to make those eventually (hopefully before Valentine’s Day, but you know how I am about schedules). So I guess this works out alright.

Anyway, I finished these two sets of coasters last night, so my second shop has a bit more inventory in it. And that’s all I have to say right now. So enjoy the coasters, and don’t freeze to death in this terrible snow storm we’re having (total sarcasm)!

I hate these socks!


These socks, I hates them…


Honestly, I hate everything about these particular yoga socks. I don’t like the color, I don’t like how they look when they’re done, I really don’t like anything about them. But I seem to be the only one. When I first picked up the yarn, I was all like, “ooh, that’s a neat color!”. And then I started the socks. And I couldn’t wait to be done with them. There is something inherantly bad about working up a pair of socks in a color that I really hate. But I finished them. And there they sat, in my shop, taking up space (which is a good thing), but not selling. And I crossed my fingers that they wouldn’t, because if they did I’d have to make another pair.

And then they sold. And I put off making another for a while, but finally I did. And then they sold again. Argh! Why is it that these socks I hate are so popular? I have no freaking idea. But I posted them in my Wanelo team the other day, and last I checked, they had over a thousand saves. A THOUSAND!!! Dear lord, people love these ugly socks. Which makes me think, maybe I should make more socks in colors that I hate? But no, because then I’ll just spend two days grumbling to myself and my cat how much I hate them.

If only wearing ugly socks could make people this happy...

If only wearing ugly socks could make people this happy…

I know you all aren’t having “ugly sock parties”, but maybe someone is trying to start a new trend? Stick with the ugly sweater parties, they make me smile.

So anyway, back to the resolutions. In particular, the one about keeping myself to a schedule. This morning I decided I’d give it a shot, and schedule myself a little bit of time to get my internet work done (blogging, posting in teams, starting up a new round of the BNS, etc.) and then set a schedule for knitting. So far so good, as I told myself I’d do computer stuff until 9am and then get back to work on the socks. It’s 8:45 right now. I’m not sure I’ll have time to spread the word about this new post, but a few extra minutes past 9am won’t kill me. The problem I have is with the schedule for knitting. Ok, so I’m saying 9am, but what is my stop time? I have all day, so I’ll probably try to knit all day, but I know I’ll eventually get distracted and pick up the computer. Stats are still the bane of my existence, and I still look at them eleventy billion times a day. 9am until… noon? And then an hour of internet work, and then 1pm until…. what??? I suck at schedules. Blargh.

Whatever, I’ll knit until I don’t feel like knitting anymore I suppose. I could always work on stuff for my other shop, since my mother just gave me a load of new, fun papers for my coasters. And I do want to get started on these trivets. I guess I get so stuck between knitting for the original shop and doing the enormous number of other crafts I could be doing. That’s why I need a schedule, because if I think about all the things I could be doing, I end up thinking too much and not doing any of them. Again, blargh. But anyway…

free-poster-wypygxb5fv-HAPPY-TUESDAY

Resolutions, part deux


Yes, this exists.

No, I don’t speak whatever language that is. I think it’s French maybe? The only foreign language I speak is Spanish, and I’m terrible at it. In fact, the only thing I remember how to say is “I like to dance in the bathroom with the chicken”. There aren’t a whole lot of uses for that.

Anyway, now that I’ve got that out of my system… I promised you business resolutions, and yes, I suck at keeping to deadlines, but better late than never I guess? So here we go…

SAM_01121) Open a second shop.
*Technically I already did this. And here it is. There isn’t much there so far, but I’m working on moving my non-knitted listings from the original shop to the new one. I’m waiting until they expire, because I don’t want to be out $.20 (as little as that is). And I did buy enough tiles to make 25 new sets of coasters recently, so I’ll be making those soon. I figure it’ll be slow going, but I’ve got a Facebook page for it and I’ve started promoting it a bit, so hopefully my current fans and friends will just naturally migrate.

2) Start a newsletter.
*I honestly just came up with this while I was sitting here writing this. I’ve been thinking of doing this for a while, but for some reason I never came up with a plan for it. Honestly, I’m not sure anyone will be interested. I figure I’ll get convos out to all my current customers asking if they’d like to receive it, and go from there. I would LOVE to hear from anyone who has done this before, or from someone who has some pointers for me. I suppose I could always just go to the forums, but there’s an awful lot of angry people there as of late.

3) Blog on a regular basis, at least three times a week.
*I’d like to have a schedule for this, but I’m terrible at schedules. I think it has something to do with the inordinate amount of freedom I get from working at home, but I can’t keep to anything. I tell myself, ok, I’m going to do some promoting for an hour in the morning, and then I get caught up in those forums and I lose three hours. But I’d really like to start blogging on a regular basis again.

4) For that matter, stick to a schedule.
*Yeah, I know what I just said. But these are resolutions, right? And they’re supposed to be things we want to improve on, right? So yeah, I’d really like to stick to a schedule. It was easy when I had two jobs and one of them was in front of a computer; I could just do my computer work while I was, well, at work. But now I’m home all day long and aside from going to work at night, I don’t really have a set direction. I kind of just do what I want, when I want to do it. Which is nice, don’t get me wrong, but it’s no way to run a business. So I need to set aside a little bit of time to peruse the forums, to post in my teams, to check the BNS that I run, and to create. Because I spend far too little time actually creating these days. I’m so sick of these darn (hardy har har) socks, and I’ve still got 20 something pairs left to make. Ugh! But they, along with the fingerless gloves, are my best sellers, so I’ll stick with it as much as I can.

Ok, that’s it for now. But while you’re here, go check out Fresh Eggs Daily. Lisa did an amazing review of my gloves, and she’s helping me with my very first giveaway! And let me know if you have any business resolutions, and how you plan to keep them. I’m not doing so great with the personal resolutions… Ok, I’m sucking the big one at keeping them. So I need a bit of advice on how to stick with these, at least. Anyway, happy Friday everyone!