I have “Commitment” issues. I have “Schedule” issues. I have “Discipline” issues. All those goals I set for myself, to do this at this certain time every day, each Monday, each Friday, every fiber of my being rebels against those most basic rules I try to establish for myself. WHY?! I figure it is probably a sign of lingering immaturity and nothing can be done to “fix” it. Life and living gets in the way of work and I get distracted. Distracted like the four-month old kittens we are fostering at the moment, who couldn’t stay on a straight path unless it was a B-line to a crinkling potato chip bag or the smell of chicken cooking in the kitchen. Distracted like a kids jumping on a trampoline. Distracted like a 38-year-old Mom of three who works from home. Yeah, that is totally Me! I try to set timers for myself, to diffuse “focus” oils to help me stay on track, I take my vitamins, get exercise, and drink plenty of water, get plenty of sleep, but nothing seems to help. I will inevitably find myself wandering through the house looking for a stray sock, just so I can put it in its proper place and it makes me feel crazy! Like C.R.A.Z.Y.! Too much to do to worry about socks, but somehow, I can’t make myself focus. Two weekends ago we were a part of a Native American Cultural Festival and I had SO much time to think and reflect and I think I got a lot of answers I have been looking for my dilemma. They were subtle and quiet and whispered ever so faintly to me while the drums pounded and the voices rose up and the people mingled in a gentle and cohesive fellowship. The answers that came told me told me to learn from the mistakes I’ve made, in seasons of life where I not only burned the candle from both ends, but from every direction like the arrows of a compass…All converging to one central point in my mind, heart, and soul to burn me up. The breath and the oxygen that it requires to keep burning is no small thing! It is easy to forget the importance of this, but it can’t be ignored for long, and it seems that only by slowing down (just a little!) and knowing when to go inward and recharge can mean the difference between sustaining that crazy pace that life demands of us sometimes and completely burning ourselves out. JUST like the spring plants in fall, who stop growing in order to come back bigger and better the next season, I too need to go inward to recharge. The contradictory part of that is that Fall is the big retail season, so it is really hard to find time to slow down and recharge amidst all of the jobs that being a business owner entails…Not just the retail season (which I must admit, I do find wildly exciting!) but also the family holiday season that comes with its own special kind of charged excitement. After my 6th year working for myself, i can safely say that it is inevitable that I will hit this wall, where not one more project can be started, and not one more stitch thrown into anything, before I take adequate time to recharge, go within, and ask myself the most basic and meaningful questions. Am I still on the right path? Am I still doing what I love and living a life of meaning and passion? Do I still “like” and feel proud of what I putting out to the world? So until then Friends, I wish you a Happy New Year! Be safe and keep asking yourself the hard questions. Take time to truly listen to yourself and find the answers. If we don’t do this, we will burn ourselves out before our time. Imagine if a tree didn’t lose its dying, colored leaves in the fall! Imagine if it held on, no matter what to all those things trying to cast off to make room for new growth. We are like that too, when we don’t honor the need for rest and restoration. I think it is less about the “Lingering Immaturity” as I mused early, and more about the need for this rest and restoration.
Etsy runs this special blog series called “Quit Your Day Job” where they feature a shop who has “made it big” in the world of Etsy, and taken the leap to quit their full time day jobs to be full time makers and sellers. WELL, Etsy hasn’t featured us in their blog, we are taking it upon ourselves to feature our own selves!! The New Year brings a lot of exciting new changes for the Goodwins, which you might suspect at this time, means that Josh Goodwin of Goodwin’s Custom Crafts has quit his day job of ten years to be a maker and a seller full time by my side! Well, not literally by my side, as his shop is outside and mine is inside, but you get the idea. We are really excited, and honestly, a little nervous too about this new leap, but it just felt like the right time to give it a try. We are young and full of energy, the kids are all really supportive and crave family time, and we have this amazing global network of shoppers who LOVE high quality, hand made stuff! How blessed and greatful we are to be able to make this announcement. But most of all, humbled. Humbled by the support of our family and friends, by our fans and loyal customers, by the shear magnitude of this leap of faith in our craft. Wish us luck, and cheers to 2015!!!