Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Travel Tuesdays.Leaving Winter Behind

It's been cold here. And not . . .  brrrr. . . it's dipped below zero, cold.

I'm talking three or four layers are required to open the door and get the mail out of the mailbox cold!

Cold isn't all that unusual in Alberta of course, but frigid cold this early and this often is!

What I need is a little holiday someplace warm. Someplace smothered in flowers rather than snow.

Since an actual vacation is out of the question at the moment, I decided to revisit my photo archives and go on a virtual holiday instead.

Oh summer, how I miss you. . .

What do you do when winter gets you down? Do you have a favorite escape?

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Travel Tuesdays. The End of the Road?

This past weekend we had a Christmas Open House here at A Life of Whimsey.

We had been preparing for it for quite some time and last week was crammed full as we worked feverishly to get everything done.

Without my kids it wouldn't have gotten done!

Holly and I sewed, planted, created and baked.

Morgan came over with his tools and beautified some of my old windows. His girlfriend Kim baked three dozen delicious tarts.

Holly, Jesse and I took Jada and spent several hours delivering flyers on a snowy, chilly day late last week.

6 o'clock arrived. Apple cider and hot chocolate simmered on the stove. Whipped cream and all manner of sprinkles stood nearby. Cookies, cakes and pastries adored the three tired class cake stand.

All was in readiness for that first person to walk through the door.

All that is, except for me. I still hadn't priced things, designed and printed up special tags for my products or embellished my vintage windows the way I had planned.

I hadn't showered! And despite what Holly said, I really needed a shower.

Several lovely, talented young ladies joined my sale. Shelly and Marla from Made by Five, Elizabeth from The Olive Tree project, Cindy from Junebabycrochet and Kim who makes the most beautiful scarves.

The sale was open for business. It was a quiet evening. Several ladies dropped by and enjoyed a hot beverage and baked goods while they shopped.

Saturday morning came and we all hoped for a busier day. It stayed quiet all day.

So here's the thing . . .

Selling stuff is tricky. You can do your very best work but it doesn't mean much if no one comes to see it. That's true for every business whether large or small. The only thing that's different between the two is scale. ( well, not the only thing . . . ;D)

People don't come for a myriad of reasons. They were sick, forgot, had unexpected company, unexpected expenses or were just too tired to leave the house that day.

I get that. It happens to me all the time as well.

At what point though, does a business owner look at the bottom line and say . . .  I love doing all this stuff but I am not actually making any money at it?

A new business takes a few years before things really start rolling of course and it requires a lot of hard work, energy. time and passion to be successful. So what do you do if you start running out of some of these things??

Well, if you're me, you try harder . . .

But, this quote starts haunting you. . .

Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.

I'm not sure what the future holds but it's possible that this may be the end of the road for one of my dreams.

Thankfully, dreams are never in short supply at my house.

 Maybe it's time to pursue a new one.

How do you know when it's time to let a dream go go?

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

A Baby in the Studio.

I had such fun last week !

My friend Joyce brought over her five month old grandson Abe for a photo shoot.

I learned/relearned a few things about five month old babies:
  • They take a while to warm up to strangers
  • they put everything into their mouths.
  • they never stop moving . . .
Such a little cutie.

I've been so busy getting ready for this weekend's Christmas Open house that I haven't have time to go through all the pictures and do any editing, but this one caught my eye and I couldn't resist stealing a little time to edit it.

Check out Abe . . .

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Travel Tuesdays. Christmas Traditions

We are entering the Christmas season, one of my favorite times of the year.

Everyone in our family loves a good adventure, but at this time of the year the majority of our adventures happen at home.

My kids love family traditions and hold tight to all kinds of Christmas fun I thought they would have discarded long ago.

It makes me very, very happy. . . 

So without further ado, (or any of the cute collages I made in Picmonkey that refused to save and let me put them on my blog . . .  :( ) I give you our annual Gingerbread house build:

Does your family have Christmas traditions? How have they changed over the years???

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Getting ready for next week's Christmas Open House.

I was up until the wee hours of the morning earlier this week, designing my new calendar which will be ready for next week end's Christmas Open House Sale. (Nov 29-30)

Here's a sneak peak at a few of the pages.

Desk calendars will also be available.

These have most of the same pictures but not all.

A few of my favorite pictures didn't make the calendar, as for some unknown reason the files were too large to put in the program. If it hadn't been so late at night I might have persevered and found a way to make it work, but . . .

Maybe they'll show up in next year's calendar.

I'm looking forward to the Open House. I've been working on some cool new items and I'm also going to be joined by a few other amazing vendors.

I'll be spending time in the kitchen next week as Holly and I bake  lots of goodies for our guests.

Stay tuned for the flyer/poster which is coming out tomorrow both here and on Facebook with the details.

Can't wait to see you there!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Travel Tuesdays. A Spontaneous Adventure.

I mentioned in last week's Travel Tuesday post that it had been a while since I had been on an adventure, so, when one came knocking on Friday night, I opened the door.

 My friend Joyce  phoned me Thursday night.  Her cousin Lorraine was selling at a winter craft fair in Westlock which is about an hour outside the city . How did I feel about a road trip Friday night?

 You don't have to ask me twice! She even did the driving which made it my favorite kind of road trip. One where I didn't have to drive!

 We left the city a little later than planned, but had no problem chatting up a storm as we went.It had been awhile since we had seen each other, so we had lots to talk about. (Okay, okay, we would still talk up a storm even if we saw each other everyday . . .)

 Once in Westlock we had to do a quick web search to find out where the craft fair was being held. Imagine our surprise to find out we had missed the Santa parade and a festive dinner.

We hadn't missed the fireworks though!  They started at 9:30. Whoo Hoo! We love fireworks. For years it was tradition to head to her house on New Years Eve with the kids, hang out with other friends and their kids and enjoy an amazing fireworks display.

 First stop the craft fair.

 Lorraine's booth was near the front, so we headed that way  and before you knew it . . .we were chatting up a storm! Lorraine also has greenhouses and sells beautiful plants in the spring. Her greenhouses are a lot larger than mine, so it was great to get another point of view.

 It's 8:40. Whaaat?! "Joyce we'd better look around quick! they'll be closing in no time!"

 Ooooh, if you could see what I got! But you can't. Not until I get a sweet little newborn into my studio. . . stay tuned for that.

Send your pregnant friends my way if you can't stand waiting . . . ;D

 There was still a few minutes to check out a local store, who's name I've forgotten, something Joyce will never let me live down.  It's quite odd and she said it several times because it makes her giggle. Craziest place ever. But in a cool way. Cowboy boots and quilting fabric side by side, along with just about anything else you can think of.

 Crossing the street to the truck, we noticed another store with beautiful gift items. We were too late though. The owner was bringing the sign in. I mentioned how much I liked her store and that it was too bad I'd missed it.

 "You don't have to miss it. I haven't closed the till yet. Come on in!" We left with cool ceramic travel mugs (this one's mine) . . .

 and made it outside just in time to watch the fireworks.

 It was magical. And then it started snowing. Double magical.

I do love a spontaneous adventure.

 Thanks for taking me along on yours Joyce!

What about you? Have you been on any spur of the moment adventures lately?

© A Life of Whimsey