Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Year's Eve

Well as I've allowed myself to look back on the past year I feel it is time to look to the upcoming New Year, 2009. I pray that this year will be my best year yet!
I have only one real resolution. The rest are goals to upgrade my life! My resolution is to quit drinking my beloved Pepsi. As I love it so much it is pretty much all I drink. I know that this isn't healthy and it's past time to give up this habit. I need more water in my life and less sugar and calories. I want my energy and my figure back!
Needless to say I don't drink coffee or tea, or diet drinks. They all taste very nasty to me. Tea tastes like dry, musty leaves. The only tea I've liked was made with fresh peppermint. Coffee is extremely bitter, but I LOVE the smell of it! As for the diet drinks I can taste the artificial sweetners in them and they leave a nasty taste in my mouth!
I have many goals in mind to help make my life better and easier. Both for my personal life and my business.
I need to lose weight, drink more water and eat less fat and sugar and get my teeth fixed.
I'm going on a fianancial diet as well for both my business and personal. I plan to better promote my business online, offline and locally.
To start keeping those business books like I need to!
I hope to learn how to write a business plan.
Basically I plan to start taking my business seriously. I recently realized that although I am making and selling stuff, the rest of my business "plan" was just a blur of thoughts in my brain.
I have many exciting ideas for creating this year as well! New color designs, new techniques and a lot more fun!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Reflections of 2008

Reflections on my business.
I had some great ideas this year and came up with some great fused glass colors. I can finally say that I am starting to develop my own style in wire wrapping. I put together some great designs and came up with several original ones that I even managed to impress myself with.
One advantage of being stuck in Portland was the ability to go to the Bead Expo at the Portland Convention Center. I had a lot of fun and got to see a lot of beads!
I broke down and finally started selling on line. I have really learned a lot about creating a good looking store and how to take great pictures of my jewelry. Dichroic is a real pain to get good pictures of. With glass there is the glare and reflection factor, add in the dichroic and you have twice the reflection and colors try to change or come out wrong! Oh, and previously I've been trained to think "One Good Picture", well online one has to have multiple good pictures! I'm learning how to do more than take a variation of the same shot over and over!
Sales were better than I expected due to the economy. However I sold mostly $6.00 to $12.00 items.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Reflections of 2008, Part I

I've found myself thinking back upon the past year and allowing myself to admit that personally it was rather horrible. In hindsight I've been to hell and back. I think most of my family, friends and ex would agree with that assessment.
It is hard to believe that it was just a little over a year ago, December 22, that our eight year old daughter was diagnosed with acquired Aplastic Anemia. This plunged us into a seven month hell of hospitals, treatments, complications and a routine of bi-weekly blood tests, weekly transfusions and a complex schedule of medications including a daily injection.
Unfortunately she did not survive and succumbed to complications from the disease exactly seven months to the day of her diagnosis after fighting a three week battle with an aggressive fungus. She astounded all her doctors, nurses and caretakers with her will to survive. She is my hero.
I'm grateful for many things that have helped me through this difficult time. I have my spirituality and have found much comfort in the meaning of "God's Will". I don't have a lot of regrets thankfully. I loved and appreciated her while she was here and I know that she knew that. I had the chance to make my peace with her and to say good bye. Also lots of support from friends and family and my craft to keep me busy and give me a reason to keep going.
I have now made it past my first Christmas without her. I still miss my buddy, cohort, junior partner, third generation glass artist, grade A student who had an unquenchable zest for life, a great sense of style-my darling "baby" girl.

Promotional Goals for 2009

I have created several goals for 2009, the first I wish to list are about promoting myself and my work.

One-To learn the ways to promote, advertise and get traffic to my websites!
Two-To enter into some higher end, juried shows (if all else fails to be ready fo 2010 season for these shows).
Three-To promote myself locally by getting into some shops and/or galleries.
Four--To have better promo materials at my shows.
Five--Be a featured artist at my local Central Oregon Saturday Market.
Six---To submit pictures of my work to magazines for use in the gallery and show/tell sections.

These are all the ones I can think of for now. If anyone has more please comment! Thank you, WillowWalker

I'm here!

I have manged to find my way here. As at this point in time I find a lot of computer stuff confusing. As I don't always understand the lingo, or what they "want", I tend to make a huge mess out of the simplest things!
So in about a two weeks I'm "borrowing" a good friend's son & husband to help me set up gadgets, "share", widgets, etc; and to hopefully help me put it all together for managability!
I'm on Facebook, MySpace, Ning, ArtFire,Plumdrop, Etsy,.... I'm hoping for a way to link one blog to all! I did finally learn how to copy and paste again!
This is just one part of my business goals for the New Year-learning how utilize the web to "advertise" my business.