Monday, September 29, 2008

My New Job

You know how when you start a new job and you are learning all the stuff like how they do this and how they do that, and learning new stuff you didn't do before.  Well, I'm doing all of that, plus some, all at one time...but I'm the one putting all the pressure on myself and no one telling me to do it.  How crazy is that?  Maybe it's the Bowers in me.  I've always been that way.  I set my mind to doing something, and I will do it.  If I lose interest in it, forget it.  Or worse yet, I get a control-freak manager telling me what to do, and I lose all interest completely.   It's got to be something that drives me and let me go and do my thing.

Dennis has been doing the same thing.  He's really been putting a lot of effort in some new designs.  It takes so much hard work.

Dennis is more of the sewer of the two of us, although he was surprised at how good I was at it and how much I did know.  You see, he wasn't the only one who grew up with a Mom and grandmother(s) that sewed.  He's just the one that did the quilting and has more recently done it.  So I signed up for this charms(squares) purse class at our local sewing store.  I thought it would be a learning experience for me.  And it was.  And I was also able to show Dennis a thing or two ;) we always like to show each other off.
I didn't know that the class was all day!  Yikes.  That really was a shock for me.  I just wasn't prepared.  I didn't bring my Byetta.  So I had to go all the way home and then back and grab something quick and eat in the car to get back.  The teacher was kind of a slave driver ;)  I mean that nicely, but she was pretty regimented with the class.  So after my eyes were starting to stay permanently crossed on me, I finally looked at the lady next to me, and said, "I'm over it, done with it, and outta here."  So I was able to at least breathe a little when I got home, get some coffee, chill, and I couldn't let it lie when it was almost finished...so actually did finish the purse in one day.  Before the liner and outside were together, I took advantage of that, and embroidered my name on it.  And now that I've done it, it would be easier for the next time.  I don't have the name of the pattern in front of me.  If anyone is interested to know, email me and I'll give you the info on it so you can do a bag yourself.  
Used a button from my scrapbooking stash.



I cannot tell you how much I appreciate my local scrapbook store.  The area here has what's called ScrapFest and I asked them if Dennis and I could be a vendor for our business, Pillows 4 Me, at the event.  They said no because we were not scrapbooking related.  I was shopping one day at my local scrapbooking store and brought up our business.  He said you ought to be a vendor at ScrapFest....well, I did and they said no...he said make some up and we'll put them up.  I couldn't believe.  So I wanted them to be specific for them.  The name of the store is Scrappersaurus.  So kind of a long name to do in pillow letters.  And the whole event, to me anyway, is about creating, which is what are pillows are all about and what scrapbooking is all about.  So used the creative way of saying "Create" by spelling it "CrE8."  Made my own scrapbooking embellishments, embroidered "at Scrappersaurus" at the bottom of the 8, which by the way, is the first of the 10 numbers that Dennis designed so far.  We're getting there...it's just tougher than what you think...lots of trial and error, with more error. 

I was just so happy to see how well they came out and to see what I was aiming for...that they went perfectly with the stores logo and look.  Just fun and happy.  And what made me even more happier was when we dropped them off to see the smile on the wife/owner's face.  She was so excited to tell the husband when he walked in, "look what they did for us."  Small businesses taking care of each other.  I really appreciate them.  Did hear that we had lots of interest.  And one of the other vendors, that is a friend of mine, she and her partner said we could do the same for their booth next time around, they would be more than happy to do it.
We are really growing and expanding and really starting to take off with the business.  And that...is my new job.  I do not have time for a "real" job.  This keeps me way too busy.
...but I did have to do some scrapping, which I'm about to do now as well, to keep my sanity and document all this amazing stuff happening...life!
So this is my September calendar made at the end of the month...hey, at least it's done and it documents the biggest thing that took place...Gustav.  And just went crazy...nothing that would win an award, that's for sure...or be published, but to me, it conveys my anxious feelings and documents what's going on...
...and more of the new job.  I have overloaded myself with learning...I really thought that digitizing was like no way, I'm not doing that, not now.  I have enough to learn with the software, having two computers (one Mac and one Dell), learning stabilizers, stitch counts, how to hoop, how to embroider...ahhh, getting that all picked out, on the Internet to not be a confusing mess...enough already...  Well...that's just not me.  Not even a month has passed, and I'm embroidering, getting and always learning about which stabilizer for which fabrics, how to use the software, how to pull up designs, get them to the big machine...and doing more of the sewing of the letters...but also digitizing, yes, digitizing...basic/gotta start somewhere, but doing it.  So this is my first digitized design that I did this week...the Om/Yoga symbol.  Really an excellent one to do because it is so basic.  But it was a .jpg file, so I had to draw over it on the computer, which is very new to me...Hello?! ALL of this is new to me...losing my mind a little, not having fun a little, and that's when I have to take a break like I'm doing now...and then I have fun with it again...

Lots of little mistakes on it, but that is great, like I said this was a basic shape, and a good one to start out with...already fixed my mistakes and have it saved ready to go again.

So we're a little crazy right now.  We have more samples to run so we can show the embroidering on our site.  We have more samples to run to show for the St.Tammany/Washington Fair, which is thanks to our amazing local sewing store.  And before we know it, it'll be March...which we are hoping to be ready for the Kid's Directory vendor exhibit.  So YIKES!  Things are blossoming and it's crazy, exciting, scary, stressful...I  HAVE  MORE THAN JOB...!!!  So exciting!!!

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Friday, September 26, 2008

Taking Care of Business

Gustav delayed us getting started with all our new equipment, computers, and software for embroidering, but we made up for lost time.  

Just stopping in long enough to say we're doing great, very thankful for orders, and having a lot of growing pains...

Will have some pics and did do a little scrapping, so will have lots to share later...

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Sunday, September 14, 2008

Perian Perfection

Remembering when I had problems with the video on my new Mac and you know how you get those alerts to install Flip4Mac to run videos on your computer from websites?  Well, got me curious if there was now anything said on the Apple forums about .avi files not playing and not having audio.  

And you know how you always find something when you really were not looking for it?

Found it.  If you do not get your video or your audio in QuickTime on our Mac...go here and download it, then follow the downloadable window by moving Perian.component into the QuickTime folder.  I was able to delete all the other stuff that Apple had taken me to before  to make the videos play correctly that did not work before. 

Will save yourself a tech call...

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Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Coming Out From the Dark

We were both losing it with no power, no water, no sewer, no a/c.  And this night that we sat in the dark, I decided to snap some shots...not that it's happy memories, but it's memories.  We had gotten out of the house and drove around in the car with a/c to see the neighborhoods all around us with power.  We were so mad and angry and frustrated, just no way to get it out.  But then 2 a.m. on Friday...5 long days...I feel for those who were out longer...

All this....due to a bad thunderstorm...


Used the flashlight to at least do some scrapping...just something...
The cats were not bothered with it...although I do think Archie was a little uncomfortable...
Dennis with a smile on his face, but not happy on the inside, that's for sure.  Thanks Dale and Amy again for this light you gave him for Christmas...really came in handy being in the dark for 5 days.  Had to get onto him to drink some water.  The first or second day, he was lightheaded, dizzy, and blurry vision...thankfully we had the gas stove to get him some food and made him drink water.  He was fine after that...just had to keep on him.
Let's see, what do I want to remember about this?  Hmmm  using bottled water to take a bath...it was cold, but at least it cooled you off.  Didn't fill up the tub, we're talking bottled water, okay?  No, we just used the orange bucket and the silver bowl.  One was for soaping up, the other, clean water to pour on you...
When my sister told me Walmart was open one day, we headed there for some underwear.  We could have washed, but bottled water remember, not exactly a cheap way to wash clothes...we were getting a little discouraged and worried about where to start washing clothes...
I didn't notice this until I uploaded the photo...the bottle to the right of the sink says "waterless"  HAAAA!  How appropriate...sink is on full blast, and only a drop or two...really losing it at this point...
...hmmm...well, that's one way to get your refrigerator clean...
Did some journaling in my art journaling...

Gotta love that chrome duct tape...
Used some fun Bam Pop paper for these pages...it was perfect!!!




This was pre-Gustav.  The album I was working on for the photos from the Def Leppard and Joan Jett concert...finally...they are here...
Used lots and lots of stuff, and lots of non-scrapbooking things, which are usually my favorite things to use...





































...and the first two inside pages are pre-Gustav, the bulk of the book I did the first day during the storm...that was the coolest day by far.  Did this for my future sister-in-law's wedding shower.  Used lots of inks, glimmer mist, non-scrapbooking things...can't believe I gave it away.  Used my new Zutter to make the book, lots of layers to it.  I know she would like to scrapbook once she is married.  She loves paper crafting...so I know she'll appreciate the work that went into it...
























All of this scrapbooking/paper crafting/art journaling was good therapy for the anxiousness from the storm.  did some birthday cards as well...no pictures for those though...


...ahhh...so nice to have power and to start learning and playing with the embroidery we're going to have soon on all of our pillows.  So exciting!!!!!!!  I've really found my niche in our business...
Yes, that says something other than MacBook Pro.  I still have my Mac, but want to keep it that way and did not want to add Windows or Vista to it for the software we needed for our business.  I feel kind of special...the software is so expensive that it requires a security key...  After one year, we are really jumping in with both feet and going for Pillows 4 Me.  We sold 36 letters in August and already two so far for September, each month has increased from the other.  Lots and lots more ideas to add as well.  Just have to get the Corporate mentality out of my mind...because everything we do, "we" do it.  No one else does it for us.  So all of the ideas take time to come to life.  Nothing like something homemade though... And we will not rush to put something up just to say we got something up on the site...I love unique finds and want people to be very happy with how they spend their money on our products... 
Back to enjoying my life with lights, water, a/c, and sewer...

...and one more important post...Dear God, if you could, please tell my Dad I love him and wish him happy birthday from his baby girl...

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