Tag Archive for: don’t keep your day job

It’s day 7, Sunday, the end of my first week of unemployment, or self employment. At the beginning of Week 2, I’m not sure what name it deserves.

I wish I had a map for this journey. Next to my OREGON map would be my INCOME WITH SERENITY AND FLEXIBILITY map. That’s where I want to go, but I haven’t seen that map. I think I have to navigate to this destination on my own (always with God in my pocket). If you’re following this blog, use caution not to take anything too seriously. I’m not sure which turns I’ll take, except to consider each intersection carefully, looking both ways before I cross the street.

An important part of this experience is to confer with wise and experienced people. Some of those people are friends who have a ton of knowledge and experience in owning their own business or consulting businesses. I talked at length with one friend last week who helped me identify some things that caused me to adjust my plan. As I sat down to begin and write out a business plan, knots began forming in my stomach, and I thought, “Dang. This is hard.” I began to question everything, and wondered if it’s possible to reach the destination I’m seeking.

I thought the same thing as I realized how lonely I feel during the day. I miss my co-workers and the camaraderie I had with them. When I was working, I longed for some breaks when I wasn’t interrupted and could focus for more than five minutes on a task. Now I long for an interruption after I’ve worked five minutes on a task. I want it all. I recognize the discipline needed to stay focused, the creativity it will take to feed my spirit with the energy I get from others, and that all of this has to be intentional in order to co-exist. I mentioned this aspect of working at home to my neighbor who is an at home dad. He said he finds that he spends a little more time talking with the cashiers at Safeway than he used to. Nothing against the Safeway cashiers. I’ve been going to the same Safeway for over 20 years and I would miss them if I moved. But I’m determined to be intentional and use my creativity that doesn’t include the Safeway cashiers. And yet… isn’t it just great to connect with people? I think I love them.

It’s just been a week, so I’m doing my best to grant myself a break. I’m in this weird place of knowing I’m in this season by choice and I’m on a mission, but I want to enjoy it, too. Like I’m heading down the road, but feel guilty when I stop for an ice cream cone. I want to write, but feel guilty if I do that, and read my bible, and make a dinner for a friend, get my hair done, and ride my bike. I want to free myself of those guilt emotions and find peace as I enjoy life and earn a living.

I’m working to sort out those emotions, but I recognize how easy it is to slip into patterns that I could regret. It’s been really hard to get myself to bed in time to get myself up around 5, the time I used to get up when I reported for work at 6:30. On days I rode my bike, I got up between 4:30 and 5. Because of that schedule I’ve earned an undeserved reputation of being a morning person and self disciplined. When one behaves so responsibly, it’s hard to convince anyone otherwise, but the truth is that I am not a morning person or self disciplined. I am determined, and that’s what drives me. I love to be up, so I guess I have to get up. Once I’m up, I love mornings and the solitude or productivity a morning gives me. I love to be productive, so I must get myself to bed. But I could watch TV, read, write, work on my t-shirt and party accessories business all night if there were no consequences to doing that.

WEEK ONE was getting my feet wet. WEEK TWO is stepping in a little deeper, with a little more knowledge, and committing myself to improved behaviors that will push me closer to: INCOME WITH SERENITY AND FLEXIBILITY.

Below is what I was able to achieve last week toward my business idea:

  • Discussed business idea with a few friends and listened to feedback.
    • This was invaluable. The business idea is the same, but I believe I’ve refined it after a couple conversations.
  • Met with graphic designer (friend) about logo idea.
  • Contacted insurance about commercial insurance for my business and car.
    • I think insurance will legitimatize my business and give customers assurance that their assets are protected. Also, since I’ll be using my car for business, it’s important that I am protected if something were to happen in the course of a work activity. I don’t want gaps in my insurance. Most auto insurance doesn’t cover personal vehicles when they’re used for work activities, and when people use their vehicles for business and only carry personal insurance, they’re putting themselves at risk.
  • Researched how to write a business plan and began writing it.
    • I Googled this and am going through each of the sections. The first is the Executive Summary. As I go through each section, I’m prompted to sort through and make decisions about each area, for example, pricing, scheduling, etc.
  • Researched and signed up for a scheduling system. I signed up for G Suite, but am not confident that’s the way to go.
  • Worked on design ideas for Christmas products for sales.
    • I worked in my Silhouette for some Christmas ideas to sell and worked on a product for a friend.
  • Worked a Nike Offsite event.
    • This was such a treat. The company with whom I worked was such a pleasure. From the collaboration and exploration of how to achieve the end goal to working with the personnel at the event. I got home around 11, and I used that late job to justify getting to bed late and getting up late. I’ll take anything I can get to justify a sleep in!
  • Exchanged emails with a friend for a Day Of wedding coordinator in August.
  • Purchased a Legal Zoom membership.
  • Spoke with attorney (referred to through Legal Zoom) about an LLC and trademarking my business name.
    • I learned that an LLC is the way I want to go because it will separate the business from my personal assets and protect me.

Some things I did that were not work related:

  • Read the bible.
    • This makes getting to bed early(ish) worth it. I’m at Job in a whole bible reading plan. I’m in year 2. Yikes. I loved the exchange between Job and Zaphor. Zaphor thinks he has the answers for Job, and when you read what he has to say, it seems Zaphor does have some good answers. But Job puts Zaphor in his place and tells him to mind his own business. What joy to see that people are people, in today’s world, and before Jesus’s time.
  • Made a Bday dinner for a friend.
    • So fun to make a meal for a friend and enjoy the process.
  • Yardwork, made a small dent in cleaning out Bridgette’s old bedroom, rode my bike, walked Winky, talked with friends on the phone, put up some fall decorations, went on a couple of walks with friends, took car in for service, got hair cut and colored, football game and food prep for the tailgate, and… drumroll please, went to Chick-Fil-A for the first time… and now I know. The chicken strips were so moist and succulent and the lemon slushy thing is to die for. They squeeze their lemons every day!

I gotta tell you. The work stuff I did is the stuff that gives me knots in my stomach. It’s like turning down a gravel road without street lights. The other stuff are things with which I’m familiar, so no knots. But knots and all, I’m not giving up. If it’s like anything else, the more I experience it, the less scary it will be. I’m counting on street lights in my future.

Now, on to Week 2!

To read about what got me here, read My Unexpected Season.

As I sit here, rain pelts the roof and stormish clouds hover. It’s as if fall has bullied summer out. It’s forced its way in, impatient to wait for September 23rd, the date fall is in invited to join us with open arms, when we are inclined to invite it to stay awhile.

We have expectations of what each season will bring us, yet we are often hit with an unexpected weather change that causes us to wonder where our beloved specific season has left us. Prematurely, rain has replaced sunshine and blue skies have turned grey. I’m no stranger to the unexpected, and I find myself here again in my personal season. I’m startled by the change, but in moments where fear or anxiety tap on my shoulder, I fix my eyes on the bigger picture. I’m intrigued and find wonder in the way things can weave together so mysteriously. 

The end of summer and beginning of fall have always been hectic for me. Both kids’ birthdays are in the first week of September. When the kids were at home, we had the beginning of the new school year, which because of my work at a school, I now refer to affectionately as SY20XX. I’m big on abbreviations, but not acronyms for some reason. Anyway, add birthdays, the demands of the new SY and both kids playing a fall sport, and fall has always been a packed season. Bradley still plays football at a nearby college, and with working at a school, the intensity of the end of summer/beginning of fall persisted. This year I added something else to the mix: I left my school job on August 28th, and went to work for a new company on August 29th.

As soon as I got a breath, I imagined writing a post about the enthusiasm I had for the new career endeavor. I would have told you that on my first day, I was a bit embarrassed because I greeted my co-workers with a hug and held back tears. I’d left a solid job at the school and people I love, for a brand new profession, with the hopes (after several conversations) of a management position with the company. But for now, I took a substantial cut in pay. They wanted to try me out. Everything was so different all at once, and I think my body and spirit were more overwhelmed at it all than my mind was. It might have been putting on the brakes while I was doing my best to convince it that it would all be okay. I have a hard time deciphering between this thinking head of mine and my spirit who I like to think guides me.

I hope it’s not arrogance, yet maybe I’ve got some self reflecting to do on this topic. But because my work ethic and enthusiasm to learn are strong, I imagined I’d be moving up to management within a time frame my budget could tolerate (possibly supplemented with more t-shirt orders or signing up to be a Lyft driver). I also possess what some might consider an overdose of hope and peace.

You know that peace that surpasses all understanding that we’re promised in Philippians 4:7 and the hope we can count on in Hebrews 6? I think I scare my daughter with my hope and peace, and I sometimes wonder if I’m confusing it with ignorance or denial. I put it to the test though. If I were ignorant or in denial, I wouldn’t work so hard to achieve self sufficiency. I would throw caution to the wind and I would have flown to NY for my son’s away football game. I would splurge on spa treatments, buy cable, and be first in line to buy the new iPhone. I would take vacations!

I believe that I’m mostly aware of what I’m doing. I’m constantly talking to God, asking for guidance. I need input from others, and my bed partner Winky, doesn’t count.

Proverbs says, “Plans fail for lack of counsel…” so, I confer a lot with friends. They’re my partner substitutes. I pick and choose them sporadically to listen to my ideas, hoping not to overwhelm any one of them with everything that must be considered in one’s life. Then I make a decision, pray that God will bless it, and proceed. I have faith in that process, and in that, I find peace and hope. That means when things don’t work out the way I anticipate, I am not rocked. I’m planning my course, but like Proverbs 16:9 says, “the Lord establishes our steps.”

My dear friend who is not a Christian asked me the other day if I thought God is a puppeteer, orchestrating my moves. This is one of those moments that I wish my knowledge would allow me to spout off explanations about the mysteries of God. I love this friend and totally get what she’s asking, because I seek the answer to that question regularly. I do believe God is almighty and decides when the wind blows and the seas calm. And I also believe that he made the weather, and well, weather is weather, and if it rains in Portland, he lets it rain. This topic opens up a huge can of worms, and the biggest question a non Christian has is, “Why would God choose to save one child and not another?” My friend, in essence, asked that very question. I have to tell her that I don’t know. But what I do know is that he’s real. That he’s God. That he loves me, and that he is faithful to me. I also want her to read, The Reason for God, by Timothy Keller. He has the answers! I have it cued to listen to it again.

I can say this because God’s faithfulness to me is not a wand he points in my direction and grants me a charmed life. His faithfulness shows up in my heart, in my peace and my hope, in spite of anything but a charmed life, where hardly anything is what I thought it would be or what I would choose it to be, except that I am fully and joyfully at peace.


Joyfully I commuted to my new job, reveling in the newness of it all. The commute where for 30 or so minutes I got to pray or listen to Catholic radio or to a current book (I just finished “Dare to Lead” by Brene Brown: Five stars!). It was blissful car time that I’d never have anticipated tolerating, let alone enjoy. But what’s not to enjoy with a view of Portland on both sides of the Markham bridge as I moved with all my new car friends? As I turned the corner off the bridge, old buildings covered in graffiti and railroad tracks and trains that stop traffic several times a day surrounded me. The city is pumping the economy and I’m part of it. I loved it!

The new job however wasn’t as exhilarating as the commute. My eyes were opened to the back house of a staging company where the employees work incredibly hard to create a stunning ambience that will appeal to potential buyers. The first week I was both in awe and physically exhausted. Into week two, I’d discovered how to manage the job so I was contributing more by packing, unpacking, and placing items, rather than lifting bins. The team encouraged this strategy, as they know the toll on the body. I was beginning to get the hang of it all and saw a potential rhythm I would enjoy. But somewhere in the two weeks something unconnected to the physical work wasn’t lining up.

After much thought, reflection, prayer, and some conversations, I came to the conclusion to give my notice. Again, I put my process in place and made a decision. I can’t say I know where God fits into these specific steps, but I felt solid going into the job, and while disappointed, I felt solid leaving.

Suddenly the season that I’d anticipated had switched gears. Of course I considered waiting it out. There’s a really good chance things would have worked out. But at this time in my life, I wanted more control. I’d left my school job for more opportunity and I wasn’t feeling confident that this was going to be it. As I sought a solution to the confusion about the job, I wondered what I could do, where I would work, what can I offer? I was reminded of something I do well, which is to juggle things. Maybe it’s from the years of restaurant work or from being an oldest child taking care of my younger brothers and sister, or my foster siblings. I’ve been in charge and juggling my whole life. Maybe this is what I have to offer!

So, with the decision to leave my job, I am forging ahead with a new plan. While in traffic on my way home from church on Sunday I came up with a business idea and name I love! I’m not yet sharing the name on social media until I research a trademark. I conferred with a Legal Zoom attorney yesterday. Which, BTW, I am so far, impressed with Legal Zoom! My concept is that I will be a source for those who need help juggling the tasks and demands of their life. We’re all stretched so thin, and I will be the one you call to fill in the gaps. Need gifts picked up and wrapped? Call me. Need your house spiffed up for company and the table set? Call me. Need a “Day Of” wedding coordinator? Call me. More to come, but that’s the gist.

I hope to incorporate more blogging into my new effort as well, so you if you follow me, you can move from one season into the next with me, and witness how I manage the clouds, knowing the blue skies are not far behind.

H A P P Y  F A L L !

Swallowing AND chewing.

I’m often listening to God’s word these days. Mostly while I get ready in the morning, but if I haven’t made time for it then, I squeeze it in somehow, maybe when cutting back my flowers or taking a walk. It’s an amazing tool we have for which I can’t say enough. I feel the same way about YouTube, as it provides me with instructions about my side biz for which I’m incredibly grateful. I’d marry the inventor, I’m that crazy about him… oops, maybe it’s a her!

But today is my first 3 day weekend for the summer and I’m relishing the opportunity to read God’s word, going back over a passage and recording my thoughts as I discover a new finding or dig when I am confused.

Listening to the Bible sustains me. It keeps me mindful of God’s will and puts me in the right frame of mind for the day ahead. When I’m hit with frustrations or disappointments, God’s word is in and part of me.

Yet when I shut down the Holy Bible You Version app as I focus on my outfit for the day (which is not a multi-tasking event),  I want to know more, understand more.  But I’m up against the clock as I scramble to leave for the day and I’m left feeling like I’ve swallowed before I’ve chewed.

Matthew 4:4 says

“Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’ ”

I miss a whole lot of God’s words when I listen and don’t see them. This third day off is a game changer, and so is the nourishment of God’s word.

The summer school schedule is under way. WooHoo! It’s been 4 days since most of the staff left for the summer. It’s been 7 days since the kids left for the summer. It’s been 10 days since we held graduation, 11 days since graduation practice and senior breakfast, and it feels like a million days since my last day off (I’m including my side biz work). Last night I went to a friend’s house for dinner. This morning I slept until 7, tonight I’m having some friends over, and Sunday I’m going to breakfast with a friend after church. I’ll fit in my side biz, yard work, and I’ll fit in have tos that keep us afloat, like correspondence, bills, etc.  But three days off after the work demands of the last few months is like being given a snow day in June.

When you work at a high school, the end of the school year is like Christmas, New Year’s eve, and April 15th (tax day) all at once. The relatives are coming, the presents have to be wrapped, and there is a deadline that doesn’t budge without an unforgiving consequence. Students have earned a graduation ceremony worthy of celebrating their accomplishments, in many cases, one they didn’t believe they could achieve. On days when I’m being pulled in multiple directions, these kids and their families inspire (or motivate) me to press on. After dedicated work by the students, staff, families, and supports, graduation is the reward of all the tears, frustrations, and above all, commitment.

As the principal’s secretary, I’m surrounded by staff who are eager for their summer break. I truly am happy for them, I think. I love hearing about their pending adventures. But I feel a little like I’m sending them off on their European vacation while I stay home with the baby, because I’m the “man of the house now, and they know I’ll take good care of things.” 

But I have today off, it’s a Friday, and I’m luxuriating this morning with my bible, my doggie, a gratifying view of my back yard, I’m writing, and I have the anticipation of a “to do” list that includes things that will bring me lots of satisfaction.

Happy Summer!

This week kind of killed me.  One minute I’m virtually talking trash to myself, and the next minute I’m singing my praises. My non crafty side asks what on earth I think I’m doing and my creative determined side pats me on the back when I have a finished product. I sound like a broken record, but I can’t say it enough. There are so many variables! Each project has a new twist that I’ve got to figure out. For example, I didn’t know that heat pressing over a seam would make one of those ugly seam marks we get when we iron. I had to research how to avoid that, which led me to purchasing heat press pillows. Then I had my blade inserted wrong, which led to having to take a couple of hours off of work so I could connect with Silhouette customer service, plus tons of wasted vinyl, and vinyl is money.

I know I sound grumpy as I work through this learning process. And at times I am super grumpy. I’m frustrated that I don’t know how to put vinyl on t-shirts, what settings to put on the Cameo machine for the various materials, and that I can’t see the cut marks to weed them off of their carrier. But then I come up with a design that I’m sure will please my friend (customer) and you’d think the Blazers won game 3 in the Western Conference Finals.

Or, I get perspective.

On Saturday I got to help at a fundraiser for an organization called Ethiopian Orphans Relief. I never thought I’d be helping with an organization about Ethiopian orphans. I have worked really hard to stay focused on the things that tug at my heart. I tend to be scattered with a lot of interests and I have to be dogged not to be distracted from the things that are already on my list of causes. It’s a challenge to know where to stop helping all the causes that need attention. I have a dream of starting an organization to help single moms who don’t have families to help them. They are in a sense orphans and I know God did not intend that anyone do life alone. The dream has so much potential, if only…

In the elevator from the parking garage I was making small talk with a couple dressed like they were country music fans. I was in downtown Portland and country music fans usually play in the suburbs or rural areas, yet, I’m definitely not in the know about where to go country dancing these days. The woman asked where I was going and when I heard myself say, “A fundraiser for Ethiopian orphans” I followed it with, “Really, I am. I mean, I’m helping at it.”

There are so many people in need close to home that I have this kind of promise to myself that I won’t get distracted by the needs across the world, when my neighbors are in need. That when my friend who is suffering from cancer and another good acquaintance recently died, that my energies will be put toward those things if I’m asked. With my sparse resources I have chosen Compassion First and Young Life as the two organizations I donate to consistently. And the way I work toward my dream of helping single moms, is to help single moms. When a single mom friend I know needs something, I do my best to be a resource for her. So, when I told the couple that I was going to a fundraiser for Ethiopian orphans, it sounded like I was trying to imitate a socialite in a movie, and I grappled to remedy it.

I wanted to explain to the couple that I was helping because the  co-founder of the organization introduced me to the Silhouette Cameo 3 that I now use for my business. She was integral in showing me what the machine was all about and I wanted to do something for her in return. But the elevator door indicated the conversation was over and we went on our separate ways. Which by the way, I was almost hit by a guy driving a big black SUV as I crossed the street (legally). Because I was voice texting the EOR founder as I crossed the street, my phone still has the words I was saying to the potential manslaughter criminal.

But he didn’t hit me (nor did he apologize, but a nice bystander witnessed my near death and comforted me by calling the driver a bad name) and on to the fundraiser I proceeded.

First, I have to say, it’s been a very long time since I’ve been in a nice hotel. The event was at the downtown Hilton. This sounds so ridiculous, but I didn’t realize that I’d missed being in a hotel. For awhile nice hotels caused me distress. I think I had a kind of PTSD about them after my divorce. I won’t go into that, but hotels had lost their innocence and I was happy to live a simple life where I could count on what I could see.

But I’m over my PTSD, and in fact had forgotten I’d ever had it. The evidence is how much satisfaction I had by just walking into the lobby and enjoying the luxury of design and service. The high ceilings, soft lights, and furniture design that reflects the current trends of mixing metals and wood. Oh, I loved it!

Working at the fundraiser was fabulous. The people I worked with care about their cause like I care about mine and it is equally legitimate. The organizers gave the guests good reason to spend their evening with them. The auction items were hard to say no to, and easy to say yes to. Guests were incredibly generous, as I observed when a dozen NOLA donuts went for $2800 and a three tiered chocolate cake went for $2700. The guests held back and only paid $700 for the bundt cake.

I love to watch people spend money at fundraisers. We can affect change in many ways, and sharing our money and for some, their wealth, is one of them. I was impressed and proud of my friend who makes such an impact for the orphans in Ethiopia, and grateful to discover this need and to bring it closer to home. And as always, perspective…


I’m sharing a few items I’ve made over the last couple of weeks. Sometimes I have to hold back posting them because it would spoil the surprise for someone.

No mistaking who this towel wrap is for.

Bridal shower cups

Bridal shower cups. I guess flamingos are a thing right now!

This is a yard sign flag. It got shipped to New Hampshire where my friend’s rock star sister graduated from NHSU.

School logo and colors

You wouldn’t normally put these flags in the toaster, but you can put them anywhere and everywhere!










I’ve discovered a whole lot this week about using my Silhouette machine. You know how we learn from our mistakes? This week seemed like a crash course in learning. I had to put production on hold last week because of my birthday and then Easter. Take the hours away spent for a birthday and a holiday, add the other things that are part of everyday life, plus my day job, and I easily get behind. So putting the previous week behind me, I dove in this last week to tackle a few orders with deadlines, fully expecting accomplishment and success. I’ve learned so much in the last few months, it didn’t occur to me that there was still more I didn’t know. I’ve been steadily making mistakes and it seemed I’d paid my dues, but there are more to be paid.

It’s just been a few months since I began exploring this new craft, and while I am creative, I’m not a crafty person, so this might as well be a new language. Words and abbreviations that are common to the Silhouette crafters like, HTV, vinyl 651 and 631, tape transfer, vinyl transfer tape, carrier, Siser, permanent and temporary vinyl, (glossy means one, and matte means another), weeding, flocked, print and cut, platen. The vernacular is extensive. I’m learning a new software program called Silhouette Studio and a new piece of equipment called a heat press. I had to determined whether I buy a swing arm or clamshell, 15 x 15, bigger or smaller? Do I buy a mug heat press? What brands and sizes do I buy and from whom and what’s the best product for the best deal? What kind of mugs do I buy? Can I use Dollar Tree mugs and transfer contact paper (Yes for vinyl – no for sublimation). What kind of heat transfer vinyl do I buy – by the roll or sheet and from whom and what brand? This put me right back in the grocery store when I was a new mom and would stare down the diaper aisle. Except this has been going on for days and there are more than just diapers down this aisle.

As I set out to execute my orders, I faced new particulars unique to this craft, or if you’re me, to this new business. For one, the process I’d believed I could do for one particular order required another piece of equipment. I thought I was all set because I had purchased a mug heat press. But with sublimation, another technique of transferring images on to a mug, it requires a different type of printer, ie: not the one I own, the one my dear friends bought me for Christmas. I scrambled, scouring the Internet to determine if I should buy another printer: websites like Silhouette School, TRW, YouTube, and Facebook support groups. I tried desperately to ascertain if sublimation is a part of a Silhouette business, and what part it would play in my business model, the one I haven’t yet developed. 

After hours of research I began with the other order on deadline. I felt fairly comfortable with this job, yet I found myself struggling with other decisions: How far down to put graphics on a shirt. There are factors to consider: size and type of shirt, and size of graphic. Some women like it across their breasts and some do not. Then there’s the length of time the heat press stays on the shirt. That depends on the vinyl you’re using and the shirt fabric. My friend had given me a material I hadn’t yet used. Then, do I peel the carrier off when it’s hot or cold, or does it matter? I thought I knew this for the most part, but the new shirt material threw me off. Depending from where you get your information on the Internet, you can get twenty different ways to do the same thing. Who is the expert? Which method do I choose and which website do I trust? Which will save me from wasting materials and time? And in this case, which will save me from ruining the shirt my friend gave me?

My lack of knowledge became apparent. The lack of experience became evident and defeat set in. I felt like a slave to it all as I considered the amount I must learn before I will enjoy the rewards of fulfilling a service and purpose and begin making a profit.

I was so disappointed when I discovered I couldn’t put my friend’s logo on the mug like I thought I could. Then I sat down and cried after I discovered that oil can get on a t-shirt if it’s not placed a certain way on the platen of the heat press, and that I would have to throw out the t-shirt. I cursed because the guide gauge wasn’t locked down and caused the sheet to slip around in the Silhouette machine, costing me vinyl and over an hour of time as I hunted for the problem. I cringe when someone asks me a price, because I haven’t been able to track my costs or time and I’m determined not to charge customers time and materials specific to my learning curve.

Blood, sweat and tears – prayers and podcasts. I listen to a podcast called, Don’t Keep Your Day Job. It encourages me and I’m grateful for those who have gone before me and the technology we have to be encouraged and to learn. I think the founders of YouTube deserve my money for all the YouTubers who are teaching me, yet I’m really grateful I don’t have to add that to my expenses.

A couple of months ago I felt certain in the decision I’d made. That I wouldn’t make money with my Silhouette machine if I was hand ironing projects and sharing kitchen counter space with my dinners. So I rearranged my family room into a dedicated work space and I purchased a Trans Pro Select 15 x 15. It comes from Pro World, but I bought mine (and was fortunate) from someone on Facebook Marketplace. It’s a great piece of equipment. Then I bought a  TransPro 3 in 1 Mug Heat Press from Pro World. Two big purchases to improve efficiency, capability, and opportunity. Although, I thought I would be using the mug heat press for vinyl 651, only to learn that’s not a method for vinyl 651.

I thought the equipment would be the magic equation to turning out products, but like everything of value in life, there are no shortcuts. I’m happy to have the good equipment, but the equipment doesn’t give me the knowledge; the practice does, and the blood, the sweat, and the tears.

Vacation and Bonjour

Party flair for a French themed party

I purchased Melissa Viscount’s E Book, “Cutting a Profit.” She’s the author of Silhouette School. Through my research I’ve figured out that she’s a “go to” Silhouette guru. I’ve only read the first two pages and on about page two she says not to take an order for anything you don’t know how to make. Oops. I’m glad I bought her book. I’ve got a lot to learn.

But learning I am. There was success this week. My friend had a French themed party and these items (minus the VACATION MODE) were the perfect touch. 

As I look at my yard this spring, I’m reminded of what blood, sweat, and tears can produce. Well, a lot of rain and sunshine has a lot to do with it, but I need the encouragement, so I’ll take some credit, too.

Merci Beaucoup,



And a little dogwood in a jar to start off the week