The Importance of Time Off!

Some doodles I have wanted to turn into real works for a WHILE now! Giving myself a break brought these projects back into my mind.

Hello Friends!  I have had myself a very nice break from Etsy.  I have a few takeaways from this much-needed breather that I would like to share here…If for nothing else, my own reference.  If this encourages any of you out there who may also be Entrepreneurs or work from home Moms or even if you are in the workforce and have ever felt guilty for taking a break, then this might be for you too.  Sometimes it is easy to convince myself that I haven’t quite worked hard enough to take that break yet.  My problem was that I was forever moving the carrot a little further and further out from myself in an effort to trick myself into getting more and more done, but never could seem to actually take the break that I was striving so hard to “earn”…I am here to tell you TAKE THE BREAK!  In the last 3-4 weeks that my Etsy shop has been on vacation, nothing has fallen apart.  None of my Etsy followers contacted me to yell at me for my ill-timed vacation or to vow never to shop with me again because I failed to be there when they needed me.  No one called me out for being lazy, no one blamed me for needing a break.  My Etsy shop did not disappear  into a nameless void and I didn’t lose all of my momentum and enthusiasm for work.  QUITE THE OPPOSITE.  If anything, I am actually enjoying this surge of creativity and passion for my work so much that I don’t really want to go back to my online business just yet.  I have taken a step back in order to ask myself some hard questions, such as where am I now compared to where I want to be with my business?  Do I enjoy making the things I offer to my customers? Is my aesthetic still current and modern in the face of all the copy cats out there in the retail world?  How hard to I want to work and what do I hope to gain in the end with all of those late nights and swallowed tears?  Let’s face it…Momming is hard!  Working from home is hard!  Entrepreneuring is HARD!  Balancing it all while still staying connected and in love with what you do is not just hard, but like the Cat in the Hat juggling all of those things whilst atop a circus ball.  If any one part gets out of balance, you can bet you are going down.  There is even a Ted Talk called The Power of Time Off that I really love.  It comes back to me out of the blue every now and then when I am really needing that break to center myself and my work.  You can see that Ted Talk by clicking the link above.  I have actually opened my Etsy shop Kari Goodwin Quilts with all of my quilts, pillows, and a few other random things, but am trying out the shop without the baby items in it at this time…Maybe I will write a short blog post about that decision soon as well.  Folks Linen, The Tree House Kid, and Joshua Treeworks are also live and open for business.  Together the four of us make up Goodwin’s Custom Crafts.  We all thank you for reading and for all of your support!!  Until Next Time!

Dreamy Nursery Pics!

I would love to have the pleasure and anticipation of a new arrival (and let’s be honest, a nursery to decorate with beautiful creations!) but in leu of that, I have to surrender to my fate as an older mother with teenagers and kids who are quickly growing to look me eye to eye and depend entirely on shared customer pictures for crib shots these days.  I have considered getting a booth at the local artist market JUST to have a place to set up a crib and take collection photographs.  I have contacted local businesses that sell cribs and asked if I can come in and use them to take pictures, I have tried to rope in all of my mommy friends into letting me come manipulate their sacred spaces in order to take some product photos and let me tell you, all aforementioned routes are a LOT HARDER than you would think.  I have new dreams emerging in my life and a new direction I would like to take my business and included in that blueprint is a photography studio where I can set up and display multiple items at once that all coordinate and go together.  Nearly everything I make is intended to go together in some way, but that is a hard thing to capture when items are sold individually… I say all this to impress upon you the genuine LOVE I have for people who share their photos with me because they are giving me something I can not (currently) give myself.  I was so enamored with this nursery set up from fellow Etsy seller at Coastal Maine Creations when I saw it that I knew I would do a blog post about it.  She bought my constellation blanket with organic cotton sateen on one side and organic cotton fleece on the   back side, with a dreamy satin border as you can see in the pictures, as well as a Navy Constellation Map crib sheet.  I got in touch with her to see who made that AMAZING mobile with the keys because it reminds me of the part of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone where he has to ride the broom and catch the key to get into the dungeon, right?!  Especially since it is the 20th Anniversary of the first edition of Harry Potter being released in the UK this past week, Harry Potter has been fresh on my mind and I wanted to include it in my blog post.  So I asked her where she got it from and she told me she made it herself!  She is a master leather worker and carved the little wings herself and put this together for her own nursery.  Isn’t it amazing?!  I can only imagine what sweet little dreams this kid will have of flying through the stars and making magic happen every day!  The take away?  Send me your amazing nursery pictures and I will feature them on my blog with a link back to your shop or your instagram and will be forever grateful! 🙂  See this print and more of my work at Kari Goodwin Quilts, and know that I am always open to custom order requests like her Satin Edged Constellation Blanket.  I love custom orders!!