calling it

After careful thought, lots of number crunching, and long discussions I have decided to call it quits with my wee home business.  Though it may appear to have come out of nowhere I have been wrestling with this decision for months now.

As I said in a previous post, I create for two reasons; 1.) to make extra money and 2.) to make pretty things.  Instead of making money, it has become an expense we can not afford.  Supplies, shipping, craft show fees, gas, postage, and time.  I am quite sure I have not made a profit yet.  I do well at craft shows, but don’t do enough to make it worth my while.  It is an all or nothing venture and I can’t commit it all.  I am pulled in too many other directions.

As I stood in the aisle of the bulk food store gathering  more supplies for the items I plan to sell at this weekend’s craft show, and tallied up the cost in my head, I knew it was time.  I had to call it.  My energy and focus are scattered around the house in scribbled lists, recipes and directions.  I feel resentful when the kids won’t let me accomplish a single task to completion.  I feel guilty doing anything unrelated to show preparations.  To top it off it is costing rather than prospering.

To be honest, I am tired of putting myself out there, shifting gears, and changing direction so frequently in hopes of making money and pleasing others.  Letting it go feels right.  It is time to focus on being available for the kids; put my energy into frugal living, baking, sewing and knitting, tending chickens, and running a house efficiently.  It is time to get healthy and put some energy into exercise and myself.  I look forward to doing things for me and my family unfettered by guilt and anxiety.  Making things despite the time and effort involved because it is a labour of love for myself and my family.

I will be doing the Twinkle Craft Show this Friday and Saturday in Peterborough and one day of the Peterborough International Film Festival in January, but after that I will be done.  I may not close the doors forever and I may re-visit it when the children are older and we can do it as a learning adventure together, but until then…I create for me again.

I will still be switching websites as I enjoy capturing our days.  My hope is to blog more often and to share details of our frugal, homesteading life with recipes, patterns, resources and {hopefully}a smidgen of inspiration.  It is time to return to the root of it all; a young family trying to carve out a simple, handmade life in the country on one income.  If I can’t make money at it, I can at least share what I have learned with you.

Thank you to all of you who supported my shop whether it was financially or as a cheerleader;  I couldn’t be more grateful.

go gently + be wonderful

e.

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10 Comments

  1. Posted November 28, 2011 at 3:16 pm by Denise | Permalink

    a few months ago I was brainstorming ideas for additional income – along the same lines. I too came to the conclusion that at this time – my efforts wouldn't be worth my investment. Looking forward to the direction you plan to go here.

  2. Posted November 28, 2011 at 4:18 pm by Lynnette | Permalink

    Like a breath of fresh air, I hope this time is filled with peace and joy.

  3. Posted November 28, 2011 at 4:50 pm by Melissa Bothwell-Inglis | Permalink

    oh gosh, that must have been a very tough decision to make – but I trust you made the right one for the sake of your young crew and self-balance – I applaud you! You have an amazing.talented.beautiful spirit that comes through in all you touch.. I have no doubt it will only be more refined and inspiring when/if you take up the 'trade' in years to come.. now I really have to sneak out to Twinkle – you're 'limited edition'! ;o) xoxo
    Mel
    needle and nest

  4. Posted November 28, 2011 at 5:01 pm by Cortney | Permalink

    It feels wonderful, letting go, doesn't it? I was a "professional photographer" for about a year and during that time I felt less and less in love with the art of photography, no longer taking everyday family shots. So I shut it down and never felt happier :)

  5. Posted November 28, 2011 at 5:33 pm by sarah elwell | Permalink

    Congratulations on making the right decision for yourself and your family. I hope it takes you to the places you want to be. Many blessings.

  6. Posted November 28, 2011 at 9:41 pm by melanie | Permalink

    I totally understand. I was trying to do everything a while ago too – although with me it was taking on freelance writing jobs while trying to be present for my children. The result was that I was never really there for anything. So, right now my blog is my writing outlet and the journalism degree will just gather dust for a while until I'm in a place where I can give more to my writing without taking away from my girls. It felt good to just let it go and be happy with where I was in life. Good luck!

  7. Posted November 29, 2011 at 12:55 am by anne | Permalink

    I have children similarly aged to yours, and I've toyed with the idea of selling things. But then my 3yo daughter said to me "just give me a sec," the other day, a line I repeat all to often when I get in crafty mode…and I realized that this just isn't the time. So I too am shutting down other ventures and focusing on being there, really being there.

  8. Posted November 29, 2011 at 8:07 am by The Knitty Gritty Homestead | Permalink

    "Unfettered by guilt and anxiety"…that's my new year's resolution. I know the urge to do it all all too well…you're wise to listen to your gut.

  9. Posted November 29, 2011 at 12:27 pm by Julie Wallbridge (feminist farmer's wife) | Permalink

    I congratulate you on a brave decision. I know you will reap the benefits of a 'simpler' life very quickly. I look forward to reading about your journey.

  10. Posted December 16, 2011 at 3:10 pm by Ana | Permalink

    I keep periodically deciding I won’t do any more craft fairs for my photography… because honestly its been almost 6 years and I really don’t think I’ve made any money off it – maybe just enough to pay for supplies, but often not even that. I found this lovely little coffee shop/craft shop in Toronto that stocks itself with bits and bobs from artists in the community. The lady only takes 10% of whatever you make, and the first $10 are yours in their entirety. I just gave her some of my cards and she already sold two… I think its a much better way than craft fairs, at least there’s no expensive table fee, and I don’t have to even be there at the store. Maybe you could find some places like that for some of your things, eventually.

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