Over the past year, I have gotten to experience what it is like to be a shop owner, and I have learnt so much about myself and the role of inspiration in the process.
1. No matter what I make, no matter how perfect or imperfect, my children will love it with all their hearts because it was made by their mama.
Lesson: make two of everything and let them have the ‘model.’
2. Feast or famine is the name of the game.
Lesson: don’t get depressed when sales are down, because just when you feel as though you’ve hit bottom, an order will come in that will throw you for a loop, take over your life and dwindle all of your supplies.
3. Never underestimate what you have to offer.
Lesson: you may have to crack away at things again and again, but ultimately, you will come up with something that pleases you.
4. Much like writer’s block, you will experience frustration and want to walk-away and give it all up.
Lesson: I’ve been through enough writer’s block in my career to know that you can push through it, and handmaking children’s toys and accessories is no exception. Take time away and come back later with fresh eyes – it works every time.
5. Social media is the stuff of life.
Lesson: be diligent about updating your Facebook page, Twitter, blog, Pinterest, etc. (*Note to self: still working on the diligence part…it’s almost a full-time job in and of itself!)
* * * * * * * *
I am also excited to share the details of an extraordinary giveway being hosted on Natural Suburbia right now, sponsored by our Natural Kids Team! Enter to win organic and eco-friendly baby and kids toys from Niko & Nonnie, as well as many other shops. This is one of the most generous giveaways I have seen in a long time. There will be one winner per shop, so please pop over to Natural Suburbia’s blog and throw your name in the hat!
Finally, in the past year, we have seen our daughter graduate from preschool and then held her hand and wiped our eyes as she went to kindergarten for the first time, our hearts swelling with pride…cried through giving our son his first haircut and in return, discovered the heart of our little boy… packed up our house and all of our belongings and reduced to bare essentials… discovered I was (surprise!) pregnant with our third child… survived our re-location from Vancouver, British Columbia to Austin, TX for my husband’s job transfer (our third international move in three years)… found a new place to live and have settled in as best as we can… taught myself how to needle felt, learnt all I can about the Waldorf method and began homeschooling our children…
Now, all these months later, we can finally look back and reflect on what has been concurrently a very difficult and rewarding year. Here I must thank my husband, our children A+F, as well as my family and friends for standing by me and encouraging me to never lose sight of my goals. I know we may live a long distance away, but you are never far from our hearts and minds. We experience new sets of challenges nearly every day, but in the end, it’s most certainly worth it. We are always grateful for each new day.
Lesson: live without regrets.
Thank-you for your readership…thank-you for welcoming Niko & Nonnie into your hearts and homes.
Last, but not least, wishing my mother and grandmother, along with all the other mothers, grandmothers and female role models of this world a very Happy Mother’s Day!