About Me

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JLynn has been in the Art, Craft & Jewelry industry for over 30 years ~ promoting creativity through Education and Media. As a published designer, JLynn is known for her detailed, colorful Jewelry, unique Altered ART Wood Tiles, and Artwork. Online since 2004, a former eBay Power Seller, and currently on Artfire and Etsy. Family, Art, Nature and Kaleidoscopes are her biggest inspirations

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Take NO Prisoners!

The Sky is the Limit!

TODAY...is a "Take No Prisoners" kind of day!

Which in my book means that I'm not too concerned about anything other than kicking some butt and checking off some things on my long list of to-do's!  And you know what????   It feels good!

Time...just goes by way too fast!  My life as they say has been a tad on the crazy side with LOTS going on in my personal life, as well as, my business life.   Time has been at a premium...and we were not able to do a vacation this summer...but we did get a little creative with our "refresher breaks" ;)


Being that my husband and son were tied up (and I'm not saying whether I tied them up or not)...my daughter and I did what we girls do best - we planned our escape!  In mid-July we found a few days and took off to the Poconos to enjoy the mountains and Waterfalls at Bushkill Falls...and just this past weekend we combined a trip to NJ to take my Mom home from the Rehab hospital she was in for her knee surgery with a couple nights in Beach Haven, Long Beach Island NJ!  It was nice to plan a quick, economical get-away that was within a three-hour radius from home.  Our time was filled with lots of laughter, making new memories, R&R, Shopping, enjoying nature, fun in the sun, toes in the sand - and one of our best memories to date...watching a lot of Shooting Stars on the Beach this past weekend (Yes - we made lots of wishes).

Life is full of changes...some years are smooth sailing and others you are faced with challenges, sicknesses, and deaths.  There is not one person on this earth that is exempt...but having had my share of things this past year - I will tell you that the one thing I take comfort in - is having the ability to see the positive and good in everything and learning from the experience.  When you can do this...it really helps warm the heart, and strengthens you to shift your priorities and juggle things in that forward motion.  

So - having weathered a number of things over the past year, and coming back from our mini-get-away and R&R at the beach, I have had that restless energy to get moving and get things done!  Today, it was to revisit and finish some things that I started over a year ago...the renovation of my Home Office turned into my Business/Jewelry Studio.  The below picture is the one I took a year ago after I got things relatively cleaned up and somewhat organized.  However, at this time the studio was not fully functional because I hadn't "lived" in it yet...

Well - a year later and it's definitely "lived" in...and messy...and well, in such a "working" state that I can't even find my camera to show you a picture lol!  

SO...today was IT!  It was the "Take NO prisoners" approach - and I definitely kicked some butt in my office/studio today.  I suppose some people would call my progress in the office today as a "small thing" - but I'm so proud of my accomplishments because all of my business necessities were ordered online and at the best price (versus running to the office supply store in a panic because I ran out of ink cartridges lol).  

Seriously though...if you have your own Home Office/Studio/Craft place...there are things that you need to stay on top of - like ensuring that you don't run out of the basic office supplies including paper, Bubble Mailers, Shipping Labels, and if you ship smaller items...those plastic bags and Sheer Voile Gift bags.  Over the years, I've gotten in the habit of ordering before I run out completely - and although I'm not perfect 100% of the time...on a whole, I do pretty well because of the habits I've formed and business practices I've put in place.  So if you're in business and would like to get yourself organized to be better positioned for a successful Fall & Holiday selling season like me - here's a few helpful tips...

  1. Take inventory of all your shipping and packing supplies...and order NOW.  Papermart, Uline, Starboxes and a few places on eBay are excellent resources to purchase things like Bubblewrap, Bubblemailers, packing paper, and more.  Getting organized now will help you be more productive and efficient as we end the 3rd quarter and start the busy 4th quarter.
  2. If you are a crafter or designer that sells your creations...also take inventory of your packaging/presentation supplies...not just your sheer gift bags, boxes and ribbon - but also your business cards, pamphlets, notecards or thank you's.  It's easy to create your own in a variety of Publishing programs - but you can also create and order things quickly and online at Vistaprint, Moo, and Zazzle to name a few.
  3. Necessities...need I say more?  Do you use a certain type of glue, varnish, adhesive - or maybe a specific metal for jewelry making, a certain crystal color for those Christmas Tree earrings - Artisan beads...the list is endless.  My suggestion - is to really think and forecast your needs and take the time to stock up now, because if you wait, chances are those popular must-have colors and findings will be out of stock when you are hit with that "Oh my Gosh...I need...!" type of feeling/thought.  Many online companies have promotional coupon codes (google Promotional coupon codes for websites like retailmenot.com or couponcabin.com to find the latest for all your online shopping).  And for those that go through certain supplies quickly - check out online stores like Craft for Less to get a super price on purchasing in quantities.  Likewise...snip those coupon codes for JoAnn's and Michael's for the 40-50% off coupons and make sure you use it on those highest priced items.
  4. Idleness?  There is no such word when you are in business for yourself.  Every minute counts...so use your time wisely.  This is not to say that you are working around the clock or can't take time for a little breather and social fun...but it's important to not waste too much time with the things that do not benefit our creative souls and financial goals.  Social sites are good for networking - but let's not stretch the truth here because they are also a huge time sucker...and won't help you at the end of the day when you stop and think about exactly what it is you accomplished... so my suggestion...come up with a realistic plan on time management - whether it's a certain time of day or a certain day to do a specific task - set it and stick with it.  You will be amazed at how much you can do when you "plan the work, and work the plan"!
  5. Lastly...Journal ~ wherever you go.  I love the physical feeling of writing, so always have a small notepad on hand...but I also love my e-gadgets too and utilize my Notes App too.  Whatever works for you - USE it!   Fleeting thoughts and spur of the moment ideas are often forgotten...but if you take the time to jot them down and put them in action - there's a good chance that one or two of them may lead you to a really "Hot" seller or a new signature piece for the upcoming season.
So my lovely friends - go forth and set some goals for yourself...jot down some ideas, make a plan of what you'd like to get accomplished for tomorrow or for the week...and as I said earlier, "Take No Prisoners"

Have a great day!